I couldn’t have imagined,

not in my wildest dreams

that those branches, severed

so suddenly, shaped and twisted and

joined,  now, a place for vows, love

and future hopes

and the plank, cut straight through

my trunk, a seat for you

to watch, to rest, to wait

for love to find you

aware and ready

to take the






Your love is like liquid fertilizer-  spilling down into the roots of my heart, extending them deeper into the soil of my soul, causing new nutrients of hope to pulse back up through my branches, pushing forth verdant new shoots.

The spring green leaves that adorn me are signs.



I ran my fingers, fanned out, down the length of the fence, past the open gate, getting up close. I stopped. I took my index finger and placed it at the pinnacle of the sharp point. I held it there, as I slowed my breathing. It didn’t hurt. I was okay. 


I continued walking, head held high, anticipating something I knew awaited me just around the corner. I’d been here before, many times, but I was afraid to enter. Not anymore. I began to skip, quickly, ready to see, ready to lay hold of the treasure.


I could see him just on the other side, through the shiny black bars, and I gasped with delight. He’d been waiting for me, patiently. To come, To enter, To simply be myself. This was my moment. And it was also his. Just a kiss, only a kiss, was necessary to bring him back to life.


 I didn’t hesitate. My fingers touched lightly the ornately carved handle. I applied pressure, down and then back, pushing the gate wide open. His hand was on his heart, and so was mine, but soon, our hands, like our hearts already, would be locked, together, forever.


Longing, when it is allowed, can become something more.

Dale and Brad’s Wedding

A few days before the wedding scheduled for May 21st, I received a call early in the morning from Dale.

“Mom, are you working today?”

“This morning I am, but only until noon. What do you need?”

“Brad and I are going to Phillipsburg this afternoon to get our marriage license, and we need a witness. Would you be able to be our witness Mom?”

The joy, the absolute joy, that I was being given such a privilege.

“What time do you need me to be in Easton to ride over with you to Phillipsburg?”

At the courthouse the three of us stood together, giving information to the clerk. This moment had come. Finally. Driving across the state line from Pennsylvania to New Jersey was a minor inconvenience to fulfill a dream that at one time seemed impossible.

Originally the plan was to have the judge at the courthouse perform the ceremony, but the day Dale and Brad wanted to marry  was already booked. As it turned out, the ceremony was held in a lovely park not far away, a much prettier place to celebrate the love and commitment of two amazing and special people.

Thank you to Paul Strikwerda, for officiating so beautifully.

Photography by our dear friend Alex Gergar.

The happiness is visible on Dale and Brad’s faces.

Congratulations, with so much love!

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5.21.14 Dale + Brad Wed139    Brad and Dale

5.21.14 Dale + Brad Wed141The Zuercher Family

5.21.14 Dale + Brad Wed173The Grandfield Family

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Mother’s Day

I saw the card, addressed simply: “Mother,” but when I picked it up the bright green cover of the book underneath caught my eye. I opened the card first, brought the book into my lap, and for a moment I stared at the front cover.

“The Giving Tree.”
By Shel Silverstein.
Celebrating 50 years.

I didn’t get past the inscription from my daughter Rebekah before the tears began to flow. And by the time I read the last words of the book, I was sobbing.

Just a few days ago I spent time in a favorite forest, taking photos of several large trees which had been blown over in a recent storm.



The tree gave and gave and gave. Because of love. All for love.



I believe it was during my pregnancy with Rebekah (she is my fifth of six children) when someone asked me a rather insensitive question.

“How is it possible to love so many children at once?”

My secret was simple. Each one enlarged my heart further, causing the roots of love within to grow deeper and stronger. Each one made me more.

The love from my children to me and back to them is an endless loop that radiates in us, to us, through us, and beyond.


These are my six awesome kids!


Rebekah, Amber, Dale, Lisa-Noel, Josiah, and front and center, having a little too much fun the night of his 21st birthday, Chadwick.

And almost a year ago love arrived in the form of this little angel, my first granddaughter, Harper.

1970549_10152014494048339_1548880225_n photo taken by my daughter Amber Moralis

 Happy Mother’s Day to all you “Giving Trees”… with love!



A Feast

Love After Love
by Derek Walcott

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the
stranger who was your self.
Give Wine. Give bread. Give
back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who
has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you
by heart.
Take down the love letters
from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate
peel your own image from
the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.


by Danese Grandfield


I kneel, before
the early morning dew
in thanksgiving
for this

moment- suspended,
believed, captured
and inhaled.

The feast is
everywhere I look
such bounty

and it catapults me
to dream.

I press the shutter,
and rise

my knees,
my heart,

Thoughts of Love

Love is raw, emotive,
doesn’t make sense.

Love sometimes slams a door in your face,
or shuts one behind so that you cannot go back.

Love removes obstacles,
kicks them aside,
determined to prove it
will not be stopped.

Love dreams, in colors,
all colors of the rainbow.

Love maintains composure, even
when all hell is breaking lose.

Love holds fast.

Love stays.

Love tucks in.

DSC_4893And sometimes love leaves,
lets go,
moves on.