Okay, I am a proud scone grandma and I’ve just got to share: The classic scone at SconeGrown in Bellingham, Washington, owned by my son, Xander, and my daughter-in-law, Kyla, was recently chosen by PETA as one of the top ten vegan desserts IN THE ENTIRE COUNTRY!!! No, I am not kidding. It is, in fact, the only dessert in the Pacific Northwest to make the top ten this year.
I visited Scone Grown last week and had this tangy tastebud-pleasing delight – my new favorite scone – I present to you the orange spice scone with orange curd:
I’m trying to find the words to describe what the magic of yesterday meant to me. I woke up feeling unsettled. Disturbed. Scared even. Trying to find some peace about the state of our world. But one of my former eighth graders, Austin (who’s all grown-up now and father to an amazing grade schooler), gave me a huge gift yesterday that helped me remember what a wonderful world we live in. Austin invited me to help chaperone a group of youngsters on a four-mile birding adventure near Edison, Washington. It was cosmic, my friends. The snow geese flew circles around us – it felt like we were inside a snow globe of snow geese!; the trumpeter swans and Canada geese honked their greetings to us as they flew by; a mama horned owl eyed us from her perch above her nest; a seal raised his head above the Samish River; eagles flew all around us; and peacocks! – yes, there were even peacocks! – and I took a photo that proves that peacocks actually DO fly (sort of).
My lungs got all filled up with fresh air and my soul got all filled up with beauty today. I don’t know how to begin to thank Austin for this gift.
You are my precious child. Feel yourself embodied in my body – embodied in the body of Love. I AM Love, all-power, all-presence, always with you. I AM impenetrable Love, all encompassing – the only presence or power or Mind. You are never separated, isolated, or apart from Love. There is no place you could go, or be taken, that is outside of Love. You are never apart from Love. You are never in danger because you are never outside of what is Good. You are in an impervious armor of Love. You are a part of the Life that fills all space and never ends. You are the expression of never-ending Life itself. -Karen Molenaar Terrell
The son and I talked about the tree on the drive home. 850 years it had lived on this planet! It had been seeded in the late 1100’s – around the time of Genghis Khan and England’s King John, before Mansua Musa or Marco Polo, da Vinci or Michelangelo. Before Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, Shakespeare, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr. or Mooji. It rooted into the soil as a tender seedling and grew during the Black Plague; grew while the ash from Krakatoa blocked the sun; and while factories sprouted up across the northern hemisphere. It grew while soldiers fought to end slavery; while World War I and World War II raged across Europe; while our planet warmed; and while division and despair made humans sometimes wonder if our planet was beyond repair. It grew. Quietly, without fanfare or medals or approval or star ratings – it lived, created oxygen, and grew – because that is what trees do. And maybe when it was older and sturdy, indigenous children played in its bends and called it “friend.” I like to think that’s true.
Yesterday I visited my wise friend, Charles. He could tell I was scared about our world. “Just be present,” he said. “Be a tree.” -Karen Molenaar Terrell
There are nobler things than “shows of strength,” stronger things than greed, more worthy things than ego, better things to feed. There’s Love and Truth and Life itself – all-power, always beautiful, always here. Greed and ego don’t have a chance against the Love that we draw near. -Karen Molenaar Terrell
“Draw nigh to Love and love will draw nigh to you.” -James 4:8
I could write a poem right now – find a word that rhymes like vow, bow, DOW, maybe cow – but I don’t wonna and instead I’m gonna go back to bed and sleep. -Karen Molenaar Terrell, great 21st century nut
Here is a picture of a cow with her new baby. Photo by me.
Five years ago today we brought Moz into our home. The nurturers from hospice came in and showed us how to care for Mom. Moz and I spent the afternoon telling each other how much we loved each other. At the end of the day it became hard for Moz to speak, but I was greedy. I needed to hear it one more time. “You love me, don’t you?” And I’ll never forget the expression in Moz’s eyes as they locked onto mine and poured her love into me. I knew exactly what she was saying to me with her eyes: “You KNOW I love you!”
No one loved me like Moz loved me.
Early the next morning, as I lay sleeping on the couch next to her bed, she passed on. I could feel her brush by me in my sleep – it was this beautiful, joyful dream – full of peace and joy and love.
It’s been almost five years since then, but it feels like yesterday that you left, brushed by me as I slept, on your way to the other side of infinity. There are still days when I think I should pick up the phone and give you a call. But I know I don’t really need a phone to talk with you. I feel you with me – here and now. The sons are both married now; and Dad has gone – joined you on the other side of infinity; I’m retired, sort of; and we have a new president. Everything has changed and nothing has changed since then. I feel your love. You must feel mine. -Karen Molenaar Terrell, from Since Then
The Brush of Angel Wings
The end was like the beginning – the oxygen machine breathing, making the sound of the womb, a soothing rhythm in the room as she slept on the bed next to me. All is quiet, but for the pumping of O through her mask. In my dreams I feel the light brush of angel wings and fear is replaced by freedom and limitless joy that comes through an opened heavenly portal. I open my eyes to see the battle over and done. She has won. I rise and stand on holy ground. -Karen Molenaar Terrell, from The Brush of Angel Wings
“…individual good derived from God, the infinite All-in-all, may flow from the departed to mortals…” – Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures
“Marriage should signify a union of hearts.” -Mary Baker Eddy
Scotty brought me flowers to celebrate Valentine’s Day. I’ll attach a photo below. Aren’t they pretty?
On March 31st Scott and I will have been married 38 years. I couldn’t have foreseen, on our wedding day, what was coming down the line – I couldn’t see that there’d come a time when I’d need to bring Mom into our home; I couldn’t see that there’d come a time when I’d become responsible for Dad’s health and finances and well-being. I couldn’t foresee the struggles and challenges – and all the good stuff, too – when I married Scott. But I sure couldn’t have picked a better partner to have beside me through all of it – through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Every single time we’ve been up against the wall, Scott’s come through for us. When I was feeling overwhelmed and exhausted as we cleaned out my parents’ house, Scott said, “We can’t quit. We don’t have a choice,” and mopped and packed and dusted and swept right alongside me. When we realized we needed to find a place for Mom after she was released from the hospital that last time, and I asked Scott how he felt about bringing her into our home, he said, “We’ll make it work!” and took lessons, with me, from the hospice nurse so he could help care for her. When I asked him if he wanted to climb Mount Baker with me, and then Mount Adams – he didn’t hesitate to join me on those adventures and – knowing I’d suffered a glissading accident when I was a youngster that had given me a terrible fear of glissading – he helped me work past my fear on the way down from Adams and showed me, again, how much fun glissading can be.
He was with me when our sons were born and with me when I said good bye to my parents for the last time. He was the one I went to when I discovered Mom had passed as I slept on the couch next to her bed – I wasn’t sure she was really gone, and woke Scott to ask him to come with me to her bedside and check. He checked on her with me and said, “She’s gone, sweetie.” He was there with me during that moment of recognition that Moz had moved on – and was there to give me the strength I needed in that moment and in the weeks to come. He was there when Dad needed help in the bathroom, and there when Dad celebrated his 100th birthday on Rainier. He’s been with me through both the sublime and the ridiculous.
Scott helped build our home – he did the plastering and taping, sanding and varnishing, of our physical home; and helped nurture the love and security of our mental home, too.
I can’t imagine how I’d have gotten to this point in my life without Scott beside me.
Scotty brought me flowers to celebrate Valentine’s Day, but he’s showed me his love every day for the last 38 years.
“Matrimony should never be entered into without a full recognition of its enduring obligations on both sides. There should be the most tender solicitude for each other’s happiness, and mutual attention and approbation should wait on all the years of married life.” -Mary Baker Eddy
I know. We’re already two months into 2022, but better late than never, right? Here are some of my favorite photos from 2021: autumn in Bellingham; seal on the Oregon coast; hawk on the tree outside our window; sunrise in Skagit County, WA; a gladiola gift from a friend; snow geese near Bow, WA; flipped reflection of Skagit Valley daffodils; a couple of photos from Neskowin on the Oregon coast; Mount Rainier; an owl in our tree; and otters scrambling on a rock in Bellingham, WA. (Photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell.)