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...and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room in the inn. Luke 2:7

Psalm 139:13-14 You alone created my inner being. You knitted me together inside my mother. I will give thanks to you because I have been so amazingly and miraculously made. Your works are miraculous, and my soul is fully aware of this.

Frogs. They may seem like an insignificant little amphibian to most of us, but as a mom of five sons, I can assure you that in the Cramer household, frogs have always been anything but insignificant. As children, my boys couldn’t go for a walk without keeping an eye out for the little critters. And to this day, even as grown young men, if they are blessed enough to see a tree-frog with it’s sticky little feet planted against our living room window, the adrenaline is rushing and the boys are gathering around to get a closer look at the intriguing little green creature.

I thought maybe this time would be different. I thought maybe I would sleep well last night. I thought maybe the anxiety I feel would be less this time around. Yet, three and a half years after my cancer diagnosis, I still feel the walls close in around me as I prepare to go to my check up.

It was a beautiful evening. The sky was blue. The clouds were fluffy. The breeze was light. And one of the best parts was that my boys were peacefully playing outside. So I thought this would be a great time for me to take some time with my husband; we could walk around our yard and enjoy the peace and the beauty of the evening.


Tuesday is the big day. Record numbers of people will be hitting the poles. Some may stand in line for hours waiting for their turn to make their voice heard. Some may stand in the rain, confident that their vote is making a difference. Others have filled out their mail in or absentee ballots already, assured that they too will be counted. That their ballot will make a difference. And then we will all wait. We will watch the television, at times getting frustrated with the process. We will keep updating our computers to see the latest counts. We will scroll through our phones watching for minute by minute changes. And then, at some point, some are speculating days after the election, we will hear the announcement of who will be the President of the United States for the next four years.


Ever since our five boys have been old enough to walk, they have had a basketball in their hands. Ok, let’s be honest, probably since before they were old enough to walk. Whether it was playing with the Little Tikes hoop that stood in the living room, the Nerf one that hung over the door, the one attached to the wall in the basement, the hoop in the driveway, or eventually the gym, the game of basketball has been something that has kept our family busy for over thirty years. For Todd (my husband) in particular, it has been a wonderful way of bonding with the boys. Whether it has been watching the boy’s games or discussing them over meals, it has always been one of the highlights of him being a dad.


I walked around the neighborhood and was in awe of how good most of the houses looked. Oh sure, I could see a water line here and there on the outside of the structure to show how high the water had been, but for the most part, the homes didn’t appear damaged. Since I knew these homes had suffered severe hurricane damage, I couldn't help but think this was strange. Many of these houses, from the looks of their brick exterior, stood beautifully poised in their upstanding neighborhood, appearing strong and untouched.

Our Granddaughter enjoys the season!


It’s that time of year again that a farmer’s daughter (me) begins to think of all that went into the harvest season for our family. As a child, it was wonderful memories of riding in the beet truck, anxious to see what treats mom had packed in our dinner bags, or listening to the comforting sound of the corn dryer humming all night. But for Dad, it meant a lot of work. He had to get the beans, corn, and sugar beets out of the fields. And he was under some pressure from us kids; he was on a race to finish the job before October 31st. Why? Because then Dad would be able to take us trick or treating!

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