| a weekly capturing of contentment in everyday life |
A few photos to practice contentment this week (aka, an update in this Season of Fortunate Events)
| pretty |
Natalie, the high school senior
We're about 21 days from our youngest daughter's high school graduation, but who's counting? This girl, that's who. (and, to be honest, her Dad and me - with reasons depending on what day you ask us). In the meantime, I'm a proud momma showing off her prom pictures.
I've been sitting for hours on end trying to finish up her life-time of scrapbook albums (a family tradition), and crying, laughing, praying, delighting in each moment of her colorful, impassioned life. I did nothing to deserve this gift of a girl, and am hoping to receive the story of her life as the means of grace that is most certainly has been and will continue to be for Brian and me. In the meantime, friends, I admit it. I'm grieving a bit - sometimes to the point of feeling a bit wacky. I reassured a friend this week that it's not to the point of me weaving fabric from strands of Natalie's hair or anything (my friend seemed relieved on this point), but the feelings have surprised me with their intensity, nonetheless.
| happy |
The First Anniversary of an Engagement
It occurs to me now that I never shared more of the engagement story for these two sweethearts. May 3rd was the anniversary of their engagement so I'll take this opportunity (before the onslaught of long-awaited wedding photos and college graduation photos you can expect soon in this space).
Here's the first part of the story: Alex was interning for the White House last spring. After a long-distance relationship during all of their college years, this was even further geographically than the previous semesters. I suppose the up-side of that arrangement is that Alex got really serious about asking Rebekah to marry him sooner rather than later. And getting serious about a proposal meant getting serious about an engagement ring. With his evening and weekend free time, he busked the streets around our nation's capitol. Maybe some person you elected helped contribute to the my son's engagement - you never know?
Alex's supervisor and D.C. friends helped collaborate a beautiful surprise proposal during a private tour of the White House Rose Garden (maybe one of the best things to ever happen there?). With only a secret service guard as a witness, Alex kneeled and asked Rebekah to be his wife.
| funny |
Andrew, one of the 12 Funniest People in Austin
This guy. I mean, seriously funny, and serious about being funny. Ever since I've known him (which is his entire life), he has applied a laser-like diligence into whatever he puts his mind to accomplishing. And right now, he is accomplishing the stand-up comedy scene in Austin like a champ. Since his first year doing stand-up, he has participated in the 31st annual Funniest Person in Austin competition. Each year he has made it through the preliminary rounds and into semi-finals. This year, judged by Comedy Central personnel, he's gone all the way into the finals round. He'll compete Monday night for the title of Funniest Person in Austin. He started in a pool of over 200 comics and is now one of the last 12 comics standing!
If that weren't enough, he said this about me on Mother's Day:
Throughout my life, Tamara Hill Murphy has never told me I couldn't do or try something, as long as it's done out of Love. My Mom radiates Love. There isn't a single person I know who's met her or been around her, and hasn't felt it.
She is also a fantastic writer, a great singer, and a human Library. I read about a book a year, at best, but it's always on a recommendation from her.
Stand-Up comedy is probably not the most regal of art forms. I wear hoodies and talk about Snacks, movies, and body parts in front of tired strangers, but I never write a single joke that doesn't go through a Mom filter. And that will always be the most important one. You could put me in front of a group of my favorite comics and have them judge my set individually, but at the end of the day I'll always be thinking 'Would Mom like this? Would this make her laugh?'
| real |
Kendra, the Chaplain
She's coming home today! Our daughter, Kendra, completed her sophomore year at University of North Texas this week. Her major - International Development and Humanitarian Affairs - requires the type of coursework that (sometimes literally) makes me drool. When I'm not drooling about the papers she has to write about things like providing care for the marginalized in any given culture, I'm coveting the roles she's taken in her beloved sorority (Sigma Phi Lambda) - worship leader, Chaplain, - and my favorite job title ever - Edification Chair. When she told me she'd been elected as Edification Chair, I suddenly had an epiphany of what I wanted to do when I grow up. Put me in any room ever and that's the chair I want to be sitting in too!
We'll be working hard the next couple of weeks to get Kendra sponsored, packed up and prayed over for a summer of mission work in Kenya. Her vocational calling is in the area of missions, and she is praying about where in the world God is leading her. She's been in Central America a couple of summers (and fallen in love with the people there), but wants to widen the net as part of her discernment process. As her mom, I couldn't possibly be any more proud, while at the same time praying through my very real, momma-sized fears for God's provision and protection over her.
In the meantime, we're going to soak up as much time together as we can in the coming weeks - drinking morning coffee, packing suitcases, fighting over the bathroom, and thinking deep thoughts. God bless us, every one.
Have YOU captured any contentment this week?
I'd love to hear about it!
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