blue-iris-805827_1280Pam laid the bundle on the oval table. The newspaper unfurled protecting the oak from the dampness. Purple iris, pale roses, pink lupine, and a bit of greenery spilled out.

Sunbeams streamed in the window and swallowed up the remainder of the previous night’s raindrops.

Her hands moved smoothly, choosing blossoms and trimming stems. The radio filled the kitchen with a mix of spirited jazz and melancholy blues.

“Lord, if only I could organize my family so easily into a pleasing arrangement that reflects Your beauty and brings us peace.” Tears tickled her eyes then gave way to a chuckle.

roses-411761_1280“We do look something like this batch of flowers. We’re alike in certain ways . . . ooooh, some personality traits. But we’re also different . . . distinct individuals, aren’t we?”

Her index finger rubbed under her bottom lip. Time to start choosing. Pam enjoyed the fragrance of the rose for a moment before putting it in its place.

“I’ve been growing veggies and flowers for twenty-five years. The kids are off on their own and Joe’s at the office more than ever. Can’t blame him for that habit though. Our needs seem to press his income year after year.”

lupine-557487_1280Memories slid through her mind’s eye. Caring for her garden became scenes of nursing sick children that turned into images of her husband laboring from project to project on the fixer-upper.

“Those days were a trial. But at least we handled ‘em together.” Her bangs flipped back and forth as if too whisk away her thoughts. “These days everybody’s rushin’ around so much we hardly get to see each other. I’m not even sure we’ll be together on Thanksgiving this year.”

The Jeopardy theme song made her jump. Her left hand positioned the bouquet in the middle of the table as the right reached for her phone. Click

“Hello, Susan.”   Pam’s free hand fumbled to clear the mess.

vase-1236276_1280“No, I’m just putting fresh flowers in that old cobalt vase, the one your father gave me.” The newsprint parcel slid through the swinging lid of the blue bucket.

“You know I always love it when you bring the children to visit.” Her eyebrows went down as if she were working an algebra problem. Then her eyes flew open as if she’d solved it.

“Oh, I’d love it if they could spend the night. Your father’s out of town and I could use the company. Yes, yes. You can come any time now. I just need to make up the beds.” She grabbed the phone with two hands. And held her breath.

“Yes, I suppose they could help me do that. All right. I’ll see you when you get here.” Click

Pam clapped her hands and headed to the pantry. “Hah, they laugh. But my secret box of brownie mix is gonna come in handy again.”

“He has made everything beautiful in its time.” Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV1984

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