life pieces.

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mornings are best.
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man’s first trip to the Oregon coast.

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vacationing for us.
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glorious, glorious morning.

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borrowed table to upgrade from book boxes.

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Easter vegan dairy-free cake attempt.
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our apartment garden beginnings, thanks to thoughtful wedding gifts.
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Japanese fried chicken attempt #1.
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Sunday mornings.
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place of employment.
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hot off the press.
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yes, most of my pictures are currently food.
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brief escapade back to origins and revelry in singing.
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radish crop (strawberries from the market, unfortunately).
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apples and bumpling. Baby is most active during anything food related and when the man of the house is speaking.
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garden grown up! But who knew chipmunks are the devil.
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First crop of many.
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Oregon coast again real quick.
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transatlantic thoughts on memorial day

Today, I am thinking about you,
like most of us, you had no aerial view,
and you marched out,
for what you believed in.
Whether with understanding
or the possession of open eyes,
I do not know.

I imagine,
you thought freedom would carry you
would be left in your boot tracks.

Or was it just that
adventure awaited,
the blood was up,
prosperity called,
you saw a free fix to a reputation,
or had pure desire to bring pride to your mama.

Yours was a drama few are remembering
in a war that seems to mean nothing.

You exist
only to hearts who lost you.
And perhaps as a faint statistic to someone far away
who sells steel and news paper
and other raging things.

You are done and gone
free from delusion or glory or righteous zeal.
You have received your reward.

Today, I am thinking about the hearts that hold you.
Holding on to a future
where some earthly justice
redeems you.

To freedom beyond these politics
that will one day scream from
the soil where you fade with decay.

Salute.
To your babushka.

She has been tempted longer than most to believe in meaninglessness.

Every market day, she jostles her way into a trolley bus with her sack to sell of fruit from her borrowed soil.

matrimony: day the first

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding
rehearsal feelz.

Just learning to sort emotions and words again after these last 41 days of resting and building and moving and settling and missing and rejoicing and growing and being forever and ever and ever blessed. These golden days.

So, not saying much here.

(Photo cred to Peter Mahar and assistants and the volume and magic of them all is untold here. These are just the ones I picked for this ole’ blog.)

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding
dress from my Ukraine and my family there. weep. ❤

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their weddingWedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

here’s a space of home that walks and talks and comes and goes and prays and laughs with you. and is cozy even when it isn’t and you feel like everything is going to be okay while you’re doing the least safe thing you can imagine on earth.

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

 

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding
grandpa’s truck.

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

 

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

Love (III)

Love bade me welcome: yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lacked anything.

“A guest,” I answered, “worthy to be here”:
Love said, “You shall be he.”
“I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on thee.”
Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,
“Who made the eyes but I?”

“Truth, Lord; but I have marred them; let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.”
“And know you not,” says Love, “who bore the blame?”
“My dear, then I will serve.”
“You must sit down,” says Love, “and taste my meat.”
So I did sit and eat.

-George Herbert, 1593 – 1633

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding
best of all imaginable gifts is the people we somehow have.

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their weddingBB Wedding 1000

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding
“Alfred’s” last ride.

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

 

“Love is what carries you, for it is always there, even in the dark, or most in the dark, but shining out at times like gold stitches in a piece of embroidery. ”

― Wendell Berry, Hannah Coulter

Wedding photography in Newberg OR. Happy couple on their wedding

Surely goodness and mercy have been with us every moment of our lives, behind and before.

Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

before march.

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Comrade’s contribution to American reintegration. 
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Portland.
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wedding planning (don’t you see the facebook screen). Yeah, Ole’ Mother Hubbard did most of it. #saved.
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cold walks with hodgepodge fam and bff.

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January sister beach trip. Also, two stalwart baby youths along.

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finds from all worldly possession consolidation. 
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airport runs.
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finally brave/desperate enough to use one of sister’s handcrafted, wistful hot cups.
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last visit to the man and apartment and new state before coming back in matrimony. 

pine trees and caffeine.

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After the last seven hours of travel and seven cycles through Mat Kearney’s Just Kids, I slipped back to my place of origins last Wednesday.

Disembarked to nieces and nephews and incredible peeps and pretty much nonstop feelz and catching up and magic since (with a little side of stress bearing down upon you).

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Processed with VSCO with f2 presetLike it was glorious to be with people and other types of homes, it’s glorious to be home. Even if I am still awkward at it for now. All processing and coherent writing still to come, but probably no time too soon. I am incredibly thankful for this world and people (as in, world in the north west of America and the world as in the world).

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As many of you know, I had the joy of doing a series of interviews while I was on the road. I’ll be publishing the ones from Rivne, Ukraine in the spring! (Not my original vision, but matrimonial celebrations in 94 days and job hunger really get to ones schedule.) I would like to publish the site in anticipation and it can be found here! Sign up, if you will.

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Got to say a highlight of arrival was the chickens my farmsick dad and I got to feed at the tree farm. We were happy fools.

Thank you to everyone who has been patient and ridiculously kind in my adventures and over busyness and non-existent brain. And, who, I know will be tried in the crazy three months to come. I don’t know how you exist. Please stay my friend.

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And for anyone who has ever been homesick for Oregon (no restriction to those who have actually been here).

Hammersmith

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Oh Lord, make me a hammer,
I wanna be a hammer for you.
I wanna run the race,
I wanna get the prize,
I wanna be a hammer for You!

Oh Lord, make me a hammer,
I wanna be a hammer for you.
I wanna brave the cold,
I wanna lift the load,
I wanna be a hammer for You!

Oh Lord, make me a hammer,
I wanna be a hammer for you.
I wanna use my hands,
I wanna walk beside,
I wanna be a hammer for You!

Oh Lord, did you know what you were doing,
when you made me something else.
when you didn’t give me lists
to check through dawn to dark.
When you left me forever outside
of some square where I wanted to put my head
down and sweat.
When you made me face nails,
And made me incapable of hitting them.
Of getting up in the morning,
and having hands and feet.

Did you want me to sit with my brain,
always fighting me, having to face myself again, and again.
Unable to hide from the weight of things,
trying to communicate because I can’t do nothing else.

Oh Lord, I wanna be a hammer for You!

Being this other tool is too hard
For this pathetic, little girl, you made

For You.