The Hope of Rootedness

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Welcome Home!

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New Birch Trees

It’s been two months since I’ve published a post. Here’s a summary of what’s been going on: we finished building our home, moved across town into said home, moved back out while the first floor was re-sanded (the wood floors were the wrong color initially), and have been dealing with our daughter’s traumatic dental accident where she dislodged her permanent front teeth. Additionally there was all the normal stuff of life—attending kids’ lessons and games, paying bills, seeing friends, caring for daily needs etc. It’s been a season where I couldn’t put time or heart into writing.

I underestimated this transition because I’m an experienced mover. I understood many aspects of what I was getting into when anticipating the move, but not how low my reserve would be to deal with it. Juggling the building process, two jobs, four kids, one husband, and the desire to live a full, creative life had chipped away at something fundamental in the last couple of years. Like a pregnant mother’s nutritional intake is funneled to her baby through the umbilical cord, my energy has been slowly leaking away to give life to people, projects, and processes and left me depleted of core nutrients.

This is why I’ve declared the coming months a year of healing. Mind, body, and spirit, I’m seeking renewal.

We’ve been in our house a few weeks now, and it’s beginning to tip from just a structure towards a home. It’s becoming a haven of respite and a safe zone for the renewal I’m longing for. It’s challenging to experience healing in the midst of chaos, so organizing our physical space has been a priority.  It’s paying off—I’m finding that not every spare moment needs to be spent hanging another picture or coaxing construction dust off a door panel. All the unpacking and nesting actions I’ve completed like a focused robot, hardly able to look up and out beyond my tasks. But it seems that robot is starting to become human again.

Have you ever been through a chaotic season where all but your most basic brain functioning temporarily went to sleep and then you realized it only when you experienced the sensation of waking up? The past couple weeks I’m again delighted by music, aromas, and details. I’m noticing trees, the sky, and my children’s smiles. I chose to read instead of watch t.v. last night. I sat my rear in a chair this morning to write, instead of frantically rushing to the gym to summon endorphin soldiers as my effective (and legal) uppers.

Signs of life emerging.

Outside my kitchen window, there are three newly planted birch trees—the landscaping plan that was once only on paper is coming to life, too. They’re nearly identical to the quaking aspens of Colorado, the place I spent the longest number of years living (eight). Tall, with white trunks and fluttering leaves, they wave enthusiastically whenever I pause to observe them. As much as they represent a new beginning here in Wisconsin, they equally call up memories of Colorado mountain escapades in the first decade of the 2000s, where so much of my young adult formation occurred. A meeting of the old and the new in one tree species; a fresh hourglass turns to signify a new phase of life.

Time, that sneaky girl, she has a way of slipping by.

Time has shown me that even in chaos, in depletion, there is always a friend that will walk with us along the way if we’ll let her. Her name is Hope. And in this season it’s Hope in Rootedness to be exact. Most of my life, I’ve seen moving as an adventure and an opportunity for perspective, and that they were. I don’t think I’d trade the gypsy way for a home that still is filled with my childhood bedroom furniture and memorabilia; it’s shaped me well.

But the time has come to nurture Hope in Rootedness, to find healing and contentment in this place. A place that will hopefully be our home for years to come. It’s not about the house, I’m not implying that. I want to hang out with the same people for the next ten years. I want to be a part of change at church. I want to spend less time picking out paint colors and consuming for this configuration of a home. I want to have a base from which to launch my kids into the world. I want to bask in the One who has led me through the whole winding road to get here.

Hope in Rootedness is the positive expectations I have for the long-term relationships we’ll have here and a pace and longevity that allows for that.

Because I don’t actually have any control of my future, maybe none of this will come true. But watching those birch trees this morning, I can picture them years later, taller and more robust with peeling alabaster trunks, and I have a feeling it might. 


Just a few sneak peeks before I get my act together enough to take you on a real photographic home tour!


The Study (technology free, and yes…I organize my books by color)



The Mudroom


The Living Room

So excited to have an original Betony Coons painting for over the fireplace coming in August…




  1. Cathy Wheeler says:

    Isn’t it such a comforting feeling when you walk in and realize “ah-h, home sweet home” for the first time in your new home? It suddenly feels like home! I love the tree analogy and your descriptions of them. Glad you can get down to real life again!