Your children are not your children.

They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

kahlil gibran, on children

thank you for sharing this, feeding the soil.


my dear ramona,

love your family. we are weird. we are flawed. we will say the wrong things. we will embarrass you. we will fight. but we love you. we will always let you be you and we will always listen to you. we are celebrating you every single day. take advantage of this wide support system you have in your parents, your grandparents, your aunts and uncles, your cousins.

love people, as you love yourself. people are fun! get to know them. all sorts of them. don’t let appearances or backgrounds necessarily get in the way of getting to know and love others. treat them well and you will open up for yourself a community of beings that will teach you so many different things. not everyone will love you back but that’s not the point and don’t let that hold you back. it doesn’t always happen exactly when you want, but love people honestly and you will make good and faithful friends.

love creatures, too. treat animals with respect and honor their lives by being conscious of and thankful for the gifts they are giving you with their bodies. pet them, feed them, talk to them, care for them. you will learn a lot by watching a brood of hens or a tribe of goats. and the quiet time and fresh air is good for your health and well-being.

love hard work. choose something you love and go after it ferociously. people say to find the thing you love to do for free and then find a way to get paid for it. i tend to agree with these people. but it won’t always be easy so be ready to fall in love with working working working at it. you will get rejected, you will make mistakes, you will fail. this is ok. usually, when these things happen, it helps you redirect or refocus your work. success does not usually look like your original goal. be flexible. but love what you do.

love excellence. love craft. love the underdog. love details and the big picture. love moving your body and jumping and dancing and singing. love the quiet and what you discover in moments of prayer and mediation. love the written word.

love deeply. too many people are too careful with love. they hoard it for the “right” moment. it is of my opinion that these people miss out. do not be afraid to love. 

love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

love yourself and know that you are loved.

i love you.

love, mama


read other letters to ramona bean over herehere, here, here, and here.

this post is done in collaboration with sakura bloom. the sling i am wearing is the simple linen in wheat. the beautiful photos are by lashley rhodes.

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i’m not quite sure why we waited so long. i mean, i’m thinking it was a bit of my lack of confidence in anyone but myself (and only recently, jp) to put my daughter to bed and take care of her if/when she woke up later (bc she always wakes up later). maybe it was also that the thought of her wailing in someone else’s arms would interrupt my enjoyment away.

but now i realize all that was silly. i mean, justifiable since i am a mama who cares deeply for my little bean and desires for her to have sound sleep and feel secure. but, yes, silly. bc when jp came home from work yesterday and ordered me to put on my new high heels, some red lipstick and head down the block to root down for a drink while he took care of the baby, and i did just that, and talked w some old co-workers, had a cocktail (or maybe even two) and then came home totally refreshed, i realized: i need to do that more often. bc it makes me a better mama to go away and come back with new eyes and a less weary mind and excitement that i get to see my baby.

and when jp and i got all dolled up and i tried my darndest to put ramona to sleep before the in-laws came over but she was still whimpering in her little bed when they arrived, and we just gave them some quick instructions and left before it got worse and went to our 8:15 reservation and had some amazing food and some perfectly-paired wine and talked and flirted and even argued a little bit, i realized: i need to do that with jp more often. bc it makes me a better wife to be with him without the baby sometimes and come back feeling sexier and more in love and, thus, better able to communicate.

i may always be the best person at getting ramona to sleep at night. and i may be what she wants most when she wakes up. but we will all be alright –i’m becoming more convinced that we will be better— if i step away from that role once in a while and i give myself some emily time.


dear little ramona: your papa introduced me to a love of bikes i didn’t know i had. this is even though your nona and pops had taken me on wonderful family bike rides since i was very little. that’s sorta neat, really, that a love i already had could be increased unwittingly by another love in my life.

like mother like daughter, i hope, in silliness and love of sunday afternoon bike rides.

p.s. please always wear your helmet. always. always. always.


each year, jp and i send out valentine’s cards to our close friends and family. i wanted to post this for all of you to give an official HAPPY belated VALENTINE’S DAY! (it’s one of my favorite holidays).

i couldn’t do these valentine’s each year and make them look so good without the help of my very talented friends. i am not a photographer and i have no clue how to do anything on illustrator. but i do know people that do. thank you, luca and brandon.

also, here is a link to a PDF of a simple heart card that brandon created for us, which we used to enclose our valentine photo in. hearts are appropriate all year long so please feel free to print it out, cut it in half, fold it, write in it and send to your loved ones (please credit me if you post it on your blog and please do NOT use it for commercial purposes). it’s printable, downloadable, and free!

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