I believe in grace and second chances, the power of sunshine sketches, and I love you with a full heart etched across a napkin and folded into a lunch box between the apples and carrots.
I believe in the wink and the smile, the thumbs-up across the room, the shoulder squeeze, the I’m so sorry, will you forgive me?
I believe in How did that make you feel? and You have such good ideas, and Jesus, hold her close, and Let’s pray and What can we do about that?
I believe in the power of shared meals and communion and stories and questions and the recognition of failings and the ways mixed up mess can be transformed into shimmering beautiful.
I believe in honesty and a life ruled by love and not shame.
I believe in You Are My Sunshine and I’m thinking of you and Take good care of yourself, honey.
I believe in laughing at myself, learning all I can about the world and doing something. I believe in truly considering what makes that somebody tick.
I believe in walks on the beach and running from the waves and body surfing and decorating a pineapple top like a Christmas tree and thinking it might be the most beautiful one I’ve ever seen.
I believe in nicknames like Golden Face and Honey and Aysh and Sweetheart and Tiggie because someday they’ll be the way I sign my own name without even thinking twice.
I believe in the power of family and friendship and the One who made the bright, smiling glorious sun.
I believe in the power of holding tight and letting go. Of giving and receiving love. Of offering thanks like it’s breath, repeating the same over and over again while looking for something new to really see.
Today’s post is inspired by thoughts and memories of family, a sunshine from my mama that arrived in the mail yesterday and the prompt Believe at Emily Wierenga‘s Imperfect Prose.
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*sigh* I just love this. I’m so weepy at the moment, but I believe in a lot of these things, too, and reading them felt a little like sitting in a bean of sunshine. Also, reading the phrases you love made me think of Grandma Shafer, who used to always say: “Come back, now, you hear?” And I loved the way it sounded even before I understood what all the words meant. Lots of these things in which you believe, Ashley, to you. xo
Oh, thank you, Brandee. Your response touched me. It’s so good to share in these collective words that remind us of our roots, our foundations. And your grandma…I didn’t know people really said “Come back now, you hear?” living up here in the Northwest. I love how those words speak you are mine, and I want you with me again soon. Thank you for sharing with me here. :-)
I believe in the power of words like these.. this made my day! xx
Thank you, Smidge. You made mine. xoxo
Ashley, thank you for this inspiring post this morning.
Thank you for your encouraging words that you let flow so freely, Luanne. I truly appreciate it.
I believe so much as you believe, my Golden Faced Aysh, the girl who held to those napkin suns for years, and I believe in You! xxoo
Remember how hard it was for me to close that top drawer with all those artistic napkins crammed inside? :-)
And, by the way, I believe in you too, Mama. xo
Beautiful, beautiful…. and I want a sunshine in my mailbox , too. I love your mom already :) It’s always a joy to stop by here.
I know. I think I need to learn how to make one of those suns. You should have seen how impressed my girls were!
LOVE this “I believe in the power of shared meals and communion and stories and questions and the recognition of failings and the ways mixed up mess can be transformed into shimmering beautiful.”…ME TOO!
Ah, thank you, Melissa! I so appreciate your presence here. It’s a shared meal communing of sorts, isn’t it, this sharing of our stories and mess that doesn’t just stay.
I can’t help but get caught up in the power of this manifesto, Ashley. You have gathered such beauty here and I can see your very arms, overflowing with grace and love and light, and it spills and splashes all over me. Thank you for this. Thank you.
Wow. What an amazing comment, Holly. I am just grateful for your words here. They are a gift to me. Truly.
Yes, yes, yessssss! This was like a ray of sunshine for my heart, too, Ash :-) And for some reason, this one stuck out to me – “I believe in nicknames like Golden Face and Honey and Aysh and Sweetheart and Tiggie because someday they’ll be the way I sign my own name without even thinking twice” – because, well, I just love it. And I believe in you, too, friend.
Ah, thank you, sweet one. Your post about the threads of your life that I read today moved me with all the detail of what makes your life yours. How I love that in sharing our uniqueness, we also connect with others in the common experiences of our humanness. Kind of a miracle to me, really. I love this journey with you.
“Of offering thanks like it’s breath”, one of many beautiful lines of yours that I take to heart :)
Oh, thank you, Deb. I’m so grateful for you.