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Willingness to Help #SOL22 Day 24

She’s always there–rain, shine, wind, snow, sleet, sun. Dressed for the weather, which has been rain boots, a rain suit, and an umbrella most of this week. She hustles out to the road with her lit up stop sign to usher me across the street busy with morning school traffic. She is Peg, my crossing guard.

I live right across the street from my school, hence the blog name “oneblessedblock.” Much of my life takes place in the block that is my home and school. I enjoy the ease of my morning commute. Peg and I exchange pleasantries every day. We talk about weekend plans and the weather. We gasp at beautiful sunrises and complain about ice cold temperatures.

Yesterday, she stopped me to let me know she would be gone for the next ten weeks. By the time she returns we will be out of school for the summer. Peg is hopeful she will be assigned to my cross streets again next year, and we can resume our casual friendship arranged by our daily circumstances.

She went on to tell me the reason for her absence. She is traveling to Poland. In Poland is a school she helped start which now holds 150 Ukrainian refugees. A need has arisen and she is risking her own safety to go help. As we parted ways for the morning, I offered her positive thoughts and prayers for safe travels and that her actions will make a difference. We both acknowledged that she will be blessed just as much as she blesses others.

I walked the remaining steps to school with a tear in my eye. I was so touched at her kindness and her willingness to be available to help those in need. I will continue to pray for Peg and hope to hear more of her work in Poland.

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The Seasons of North Christian Church: Spring #SOL21

your grandeur is unmatched
vast all-embracing roof to shelter those inside
tall reaching spire that touches the heavens
our eyes reach upward
a direct line to God
lines, angles, symmetry
everything in its place

The first to arrive are the daffodils
announcing spring is here
perky and fresh, dewy and delicate
you skirt the majestic meeting place
with a canary smile

Tulip trees trumpet
(in case you missed it)
spring is surely here
soft pink petals adorn the trees
only to fall in a cascade of perfume
a carpet of silk leaves
cushion the magical fairy garden

two reminders that the next lap begins
a hand off of bitter days 
in exchange for glimpses of warmth
an emergence of new growth for the earth
and the soul 



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Mother Nature

I take the same picture every year. We have lived in our current house for almost 13 years, and I have close to that many pictures of this scene. The blooming Magnolia trees on our block. I watch them closely, from no bud, to bud, to partially opened bud, to partially flowering, to flowering, to petals falling, to gone. This is the focus of my daily walk from mid March through early April. Checking in on the Magnolia trees. I’ve always looked forward to these trees blooming and found particular joy in watching them, but this year it seems extra important.

I need the stability of things in nature right now. I find strength in noting things that haven’t changed. The sunrise, the singing birds, the green coming forth from the earth, the blooming magnolias. In this time of uncertainty, Mother Nature reminds me to stay calm, to stay steady, to find strength in the rhythm of nature.

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Our Daily Walk #sol20

Part of my blessed block is the route I take Josie on for our daily walks. The sidewalk that surrounds a piece of my neighborhood makes a perfect 1/4 mile rectangle. Just the right amount of space for a 15 minute jaunt to get some steps after dinner and give the dog some space to sniff, relieve herself, and stretch her rigid, aging legs. I try appreciate my surrounds every time we go on our outing.

Part of my block contains a piece of history. A National Historic Landmark. A work of design that people travel across many states to stand and see and photograph. I get to admire this structure everyday, in different shades of sunlight, moonlight, and cloud formation. With a spire that reaches to the heavens, it is breathtaking. I remind myself, Don’t take this view for granted. I often take pictures of this architecture to capture it’s beauty with the setting sun as a backdrop. But then I remember, I’ll get to see it again tomorrow, and tomorrow, and the next tomorrow. It is a consistent piece of my daily walk, one I feel blessed to view everyday.