Tag Archives: Home

We All Come From Somewhere We Consider Home

©IBKimage 2012

The place we currently live may or not be where our heart considers home.  I was born in Northwest Germany within a mile or so of the North Sea.  When I was almost 6 my family emigrated to the U.S. and we settled in South Central Nebraska … flat like Northern Germany but wide open spaces where patchwork quilts of prairie and farmland replaced the sea that one is always in relationship with when living near it.

Many years later I live in landlocked Colorado surrounded in Denver by beautiful mountain vistas, and yet as my mother before me longed for the sights and smells and sounds of home near the sea, (even though she adapted beautifully to her new land, and learned it’s ways and language, ) I too find solace in remembering where I came from and am nourished by the sights and sounds and smells of the water.

You all have places where you’ve come from and where your heart remembers  being home … sometimes it’s not the place itself, but the peace you felt when at a loved one’s home who resided there.  Anyway, I encourage you in this busy, noisy, chaotic world, to take yourself home for a bit and “sit with that for a spell”.

Today’s image is along the Eider River in Northern Germany at sunset where I got to be for a while. A river that cuts through flat farmland.



Posted in Aging Also tagged , , , |

Visiting Home











You can’t go home again but you can sure visit a place that you came from, finding there a familiarity that you’ve carried with you all of your life, no matter how old you are or how far your journey has taken you away.  The image today is a small car and pedestrian ferry that crosses the Kiel Canal, at Hochdonn, in Northwest Germany near the area where I was born many years ago.  As we approached the ferry recently, to cross over, memories flooded back to a time when my mother would ride her bicycle, with me in a carrier in front, and my brother, six years older, riding his own.  Our journey was from the small village we lived in before we emigrated to America and our destination was to my maternal grandparents home, in Meldorf,  about 15 miles away. I must have been 4 years old.


During my recent visit, I attended a Friday morning market in the town square, where fish, and cheese, egg and vegetable vendors of a new generation offered  their wares.  That brought to mind the trips to the market with my grandparents when the fish were so fresh from the local fishermen’s overnight catch, that some still moved in their wooden crates.  The fish was wrapped in newspaper, put in my grandparents market bags, and off we went, on foot to their house, where my grandmother was soon cooking the fresh fish and vegetables for our noon meal.


So many years later, I realize that walking to places, buying my food fresh, building relationships with local vendors, being always drawn to and longing for the sea with it’s attendant breezes, smells and sights, is what I keep looking for in the places I have lived, but of course even the place I’ve described  now has supermarkets (albeit smaller) and fresh prawns  from the area are  outsourced to Morocco for cleaning, preserving and sent back to the area for sale.  In my grief, I can at the same time be grateful that I have experienced the gifts of the sea and the fresh offerings of the land and farmyard. Most of all though, my return reminded me that the relationships and love of family and friends can nurture in us a desire to wander.  You can’t go home again, but I can hardly wait for my next visit.

Where in your heart and mind, is your home port?



Posted in Blessings, Seasons Also tagged , , , , |

The Gifts Of The Table















Picture this: A beautifully appointed table; napkins folded in creative ways; fresh coffee and tea in pots atop a lit warming unit; platters and plates and baskets filled with beautiful torts, cakes,breads and freshly baked hard rolls with oh so soft centers; area butter, soft boiled eggs , honey, local sausages in casings and raw; artisan cheeses, local/regional fresh and smoked fish from the North Sea; and so much more.  I experienced all of this and so many more culinary delights in my two week stay in an area of Southern Ditmarschen County in the Northwest Coastal area in the State Schlewsig Holstein, near the town of Meldorf, Germany, where I was born and lived until emigrating with my family at age 6, and where my mother and father, grandparents, aunt, uncle, cousin also resided in their adult years.  Breakfast and “kaffe trinken” (afternoon coffee) are standard practice.

We came as a family – sons, daughter-in-law,husband – to honor my late mother’s wish to have us spread her ashes on her beloved North Sea.  Along with my hosts later in the trip – dear friends –  adult children of her former best friend, we took an excursion boat on a stormy day at sea and said our final goodbyes. After a couple of days the rest of the family traveled on to other parts of Germany (yes Oktoberfest too) and then returned home.  I was the privileged guest in the home of our friends for the next ten days and that’s where I continued to be nourished by the wonderful food mentioned above. At the table of hospitality, it’s not only the body that is nourished, but through  the gracious gift of love and kindness by the hosts, one’s heart and soul and mind are also touched in profound ways.  “I was hungry, depleted, and you took me in …”  What I thought would be a final trip to my former home, is now a longing to return again to experience the healing of the North Sea air,water, wandering and of course, experiencing the love of God through his children with their unique and wonderful gifting -whether at hearth  or field; by baker, fishmonger,market vendor, hotel or restaurant owner to name just a few.

Oh, today’s image is a picture of all kinds  of  regional North Sea fish specialities prepared by my friend and hostess.  We ate it for supper after a three o’clock “coffee” where we ate two kinds of torts and other delicious things.

I’m looking forward to sharing more with you in the coming weeks.  In the meantime, think about a time when you’ve experienced the gift of hospitality and renewal.  What does that look like for you?


Posted in Blessings, Hospitality Also tagged , , |