Sunday, 21 December 2014

a place is just a place?

stumbled upon a couple songs on this album a few weeks ago.  this weekend, it occurred me to listen to the rest of it.
and, purchased.
listening on a loop.
multi-layered.  epic sounds. 80s reminiscent.
if you feel so inclined, you might take a listen.

why do I love london so deeply?

yes, it for the red postboxes, the centrality of public transport, the accents which abound...
these lovelies (and a million more) most definitely endear, but at the heart of this affection, you will find that all these tangibles actually serve to provide the context and setting for a formative time in my life that can hardly be explained.
in the confines of the years I spent with a UK address, I lived life fully.
in a john 10.10 type of way, I experienced full on, utterly awake, transparent engagement in daily awareness.
not every day, of course.
after all, 'wherever you go, you take yourself with you'.
as someone who connects, relates, and lives deeply within her context, place is pretty important to me.  especially as I live life on my own, in a state of singleness.
and as I possess a fair amount of introversion.

so, a struggle will always exist, I suppose to find my niche.  (I think we all search, to some degree.)
I learned years ago that my home (where I lay my head at night) is of key importance in my quest for health.  if said home base is uneasy or unclear in regard to safety and cozy, my spirit struggles to rest.  home in flux can only exist for a short period of time.
in all my travels, I have also learned to create "home" wherever I am.
so, if these previous sentences lead you to feelings of sadness on my behalf, there is no need.
I comment on 'place' as a processing of words, the title of this post, I have spoken to others and over the past year have said to myself many, many times to help soothe the loss I feel from my most recent change of zip code.
(boston sits companionably near to london on my list of homes.)

I'm not sure.
not AT all. (spoken in jude law accent.)
is a place just a place?
at my core, I believe people are of the most importance.
yes, yes, I do.
as someone who has lived many places and made connections (real, life, heart friend sort of connections) in each of those places, deciding where to create home can be pretty daunting.
having numerous options of location can send me into a sort of paralysis.

acts 17.26-28...
"from one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set of them and the exact places where they should live.  
God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.  
'for in him we live and move and have our being'..."

so looking for open and closed doors has become my mode of operation.
praying I can live in the present and breathe.
how do you define home when you are able to find it so many places?

I'm not sure.
and, I suppose in some ways, that is the point.
trust (belief in the reliability, truth, strength of)
and faith ("sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." hebrews 11.1).
and both require...

and, the ultimate, overarching beauty that I am always led back to believing...

john 15.4, 15; 16.33...
"remain in me, and I will remain in you."

"I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business.  instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you."

"I have told you these things, so that you may have peace. in this world you will have trouble.  
but take heart!
I have overcome the world." 

recently, through a new friend, I have been reminded of how
soulful truth encourages my spirit.
how funny and sweet is the Lord in how he brings into my sphere people who,
simply by being themselves,
point me toward and remind me of
who I am,
what I want to be about, and
what I love.
press play...

happy weekend,

Friday, 5 December 2014

le cinquième de décembre...

je parle un peu français. (I speak a little french.)

so, back in august, I decided to take a french class.
this choice is,
by far,
one of the better decisions I have made in quite some time.
so, each tuesday evening I am sat with a couple others at an international school learning accent, conjugation, and intonation of this lovely, challenging foreign tongue. (some weeks this class finds me being the only student in attendance.)
as you know, part of me will now and forever be international, so my spirit is fed here.
additionally, being a student of people, culture, and words, each bit of information absorbed reminds me of how intricate and interesting is our world and each person within it.

school has always been a favourite place of mine.
would I call myself a nerd? sure.
I have a genuine love for learning, studying, and memorizing.  it is just true.
hence my love for travel, culture, exploring, being trusted to hear people's stories... all feed the inner student within me.
sure, most of this aforementioned list does not have to do with pencil, paper, or notecards, but each without doubt teaches me, shapes my perspective, and enhances my life in ways similar (though much more personally) to my time spent in a classroom over the years.

life affords me loads of human interaction/learning, but it has been some time since I opened a textbook and took active notes while sitting at a desk, looking at a whiteboard.
and, you know what?  I have missed it.
many of you know that I have been thinking of going to grad school for many years.  in fact, my move to boston contained that goal in its sights.  for one reason or another, my re-entering the classroom has not come to fruition in the way I might have hoped.  I, honestly, am not certain when the pieces will fall into place to obtain that advanced degree that I have long seeked.
that being said...
l'apetit vient en mangeant.
(the more you have, the more you want.) 
each class, my french teacher begins by teaching us a french proverb.  as I write about becoming further educated, I find this phrase popping into my head.
I hope this whetting of my appetite for learning, both in books and amongst people, only grows stronger.

time spent living life alongside people ranks highest on my list of things preferred. (full stop)
it just turns out that spending time with my nose in a book enhances and enriches my life immensely, as well.  just another noteworthy reminder of the deep importance for me to
"know my name".

in october, I took a birthday holiday to brooklyn and boston.  colour of autumn leaves and footsteps on cobblestone street paths abounded.
how do I sum it up?  almost impossible.
I will simply say that I breathed deep that week.
I walked and walked and walked.  goodness, I miss walking and not having to drive. 
I reconnected with lovely friends.
the time there was absolutely cathartic to my spirit.

upon my return from new england, I find myself feeling a bit more present in dallas these days.
thankful for peace.

I have spoken many times about the "tension" in my life...a lesson learned while living in a colorado mountain town.
the full on realization that struggle and joy co-exist. 
that feeling of...
being entirely sure I am where I am meant to be
feeling that I do not love the location/situation fully where I am found.
the brow-furrowing moments of...
"why exactly did I need to move?"
mixed in with the thoughts of
"this moment finds me feeling completely joyful and healthier than I have been in awhile." 
when I am convinced that...
"my gifting/who I am is celebrated in this space and amongst these people."
alongside the thought of
"oftentimes, I feel like an alien here." 

more moments exist  on the positive/hopeful side of that tension as of late.
life never ceases to surprise...
He never ceases to surprise me...
in loving sorts of ways.
in "I know you because I made you" ways.
in fun, laughter-filled ways.
in sweet, gentle ways.

this morning, I found myself in a conversation about how comfortable it is to be a believer in and a follower of Jesus.
"EVERYTHING about having faith is uncomfortable!,"
said my friend with a voice teeming with passion.
I am not, in my nature, one who debates.
but, hearing a statement made with such feeling of absolute, prompts me to provide my personal perspective.
I replied in an intentionally even tone that as a believer, not EVERYTHING about my life is uncomfortable.
at times? absolutely.
everything?  absolutely not.
the conversation continued on amiably, our friendship remaining very much intact.  :)

perhaps, he did not mean this remark as literally as I heard it.  
it is possible, I am a bit sensitive to tone, inflection, and volume.  
yes, it is possible.
equally plausible is the fact that "combatting" this definitive statement and speaking the truth I have experienced spoke to my spirit in a way that moved me to a place of perspective.  

I will simply say here that I am thankful today for

"...I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. 
I know what I’m doing. 
I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, 
not abandon you, 
plans to give you the future you hope for.'"
(Jeremiah 29:11)

happy december.
bonne week-end.


Wednesday, 3 September 2014


a place of safety or refuge.

a handful of years ago, living a country not my native, I first discovered the absolute necessity of having such a spot.  and in all my moves and all my house numbers, that london learned lesson of haven non-negotiable is once again my most tangible subject for thanksgiving.
in the words of my friend, jas, in regard to my response to how I am liking dallas... 
"no matter what, just remember you have a kick a%$ apartment!"
indeed, my friend.
and on days when I feel out of sorts or ill at ease, this aptly described structure where I dwell truly is my place of comfort.
a friend asked me today what is next for me here.  

"you got an apartment.
you are still searching for a church.
now what?
join a singing club?"  

yes, this is honestly what he asked me.  
had I not been sitting on the inside of the booth with another friend blocking my way, I might have laughed my way onto the floor.  

well, I am not sure, my silly friend.  more than likely, my next to-do will not be anything to do with vocal performance, though.  (at least not apart from in my haven)  
music is, of course, a constant there.
(see below video.)

some ideas on the brain of the "nexts"...
as we all well know, it is a process in this psyche.
so, I will keep making lists, writing down inspirational quotes, and brainstorming.  
I'll find those soul-feeding connection points.  places that feed the various corners of my story.
I choose to believe I will.  

another friend said a kind word to me about my future being bright.  
today, in particular, these words meant loads to me.  
when in a role that oftentimes finds me feeling a bit alien, it is a sweet gift to still be able to make connection with people (even if with a smaller number than in previous realities and roles) who engage in authentic conversation in the midst of email sending and spreadsheet formatting.  

look for the little signs of hope.
choose to recognise. 

how about a song and video that makes this person happy?


I dare you to not want to join into that dance.  
(and, yes, I looked up the lyrics, and this post title is copied directly.  I couldn't pass it up.)

janelle monae, electric lady...


Friday, 25 July 2014

so glad they still make...

music videos.
it turns out mtv has a channel that airs hours of videos.
and, I happened upon it when I moved into my new place a month or so ago.  palladia.
this one made me smile this morning.

happy weekend.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

will I...

choose moments?

and allow life to unfold as it will?

a daily option.
yes, please.


Friday, 4 July 2014

people are people.

this song popped up on my songza yesterday as I sent email after email at work.  
it brightened my day.  perhaps it will do the same for you.
amos lee music is lovely.

happy weekend.  
hope you enjoy some soulful moments. 
may we be thankful for freedom, as we are all navigating this life together.

A thousand empty windows
And only half the lights are out
I wonder what these people's lives...
What they might be all about

Do they got a lover
And could they have a family
Could it be they're just as lonesome
As you and me

I wanna shout out
Shout out loud
Why don't you all
Just come on out
And we can
Tear it all down, yeah

White lights burning
Down an empty avenue
I wonder if their driver
Found someone he can go on home to

I wanna shout out
Shout out loud
Why don't you all
Just come on out
And we can
Tear it all down, yeah

Cause everybody's got a part in the game
And everybody's got a cross they can claim
And everybody's got somebody to blame
But we all must find our own way, yeah yeah

I wanna shout out
Shout out loud
I wanna shout out
Shout out loud
I wanna shout out
Shout out loud

Shout out loud, yeah, yeah
Shout out loud, yeah, yeah

Shout out loud
Shout out loud
Shout out loud

Well I walked over the bridge
Into the city where I live
And I saw my old landlord
Well we both said, "Hello"
There was no where else to go
'Cause his rent I couldn't afford

Well relationships change
Though I think it's kind of strange
How money makes a man grow
Ah, some people they claim
If you get enough fame
You live over the rainbow, over the rainbow

But the people on the street
Out on buses or on feet
We all got the same blood flow
Oh in society every dollar got a deed
We all need a place that we can go
And feel over the rainbow

Sometimes we forget what we got
Who we are or who we are not
I think we got a chance to make it right
Keep it loose, keep it tight, keep it tight

I'm in love with a girl who's in love with the world
Though I can't help but follow
Though I know someday she is bound to go away
And stay over the rainbow
Got to learn how to let her go over the rainbow

But sometimes we forget who we got
Who they are or who they are not
There is so much more in love than black and white
Keep it loose child, you gotta keep tight
Keep it loose, keep it tight, keep it tight
Keep it tight, yeah


Tuesday, 17 June 2014


I read an article the other day written by an Englishman who was commenting on his definition of home.
many of the lines resonated within me, but a few stood out specifically.

"perhaps home isn't the place you fit in entirely.  perhaps home isn't even the place you fit in most.
perhaps home is the place you allow yourself to fit."  

as many of you know, my definition of 'home' has expanded tremendously over the past several years, and it appears that this knocking down of the supports of previously designed fences and boundaries around most things I try to "get to the bottom of", will continue.  
thanks be to God.  

for where change exists, 
hope lives.  
laughter is needed.
connections with people are made.
lives are altered.
love is experienced.

so, within my quest to be obedient to the word OPEN which has been placed within my spirit, I am working on allowing myself to fit here in dallas.

ninety days.
a milestone hit today in my new role, 
my new job.

and it is fun.
I like it.

what a surprise.
one surprise after another, in fact. 

surprises from Someone who knows me and loves me.
the absolute best sort of surprises.

people are people.
opportunities abound no matter what the setting.


for He is good.  
always clear? 
always free from pain? 
always good?  

if you happen to be in dallas, my place has a sofa bed.  and I am a stone's throw away from  a starbucks and a bookstore.  I mean...  just sayin'.  


Monday, 19 May 2014



"...the Spirit helps us in our weakness.  we do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.  and he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance to God's will.
and we *know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
                                                                                                                                   ~romans 8.26-28

in all my moving.
in all my jobs.
in all my relationships.
in all my hurt.
in all my joy.
in all my questions.
in all my victories.
in all my unknowns.
in all my tears.
in all my conversations.
in all my silence.

grace abounds, and I am gifted with windows into goodness.

I feel loss, poverty, plenty, connection, confusion, frustration, clarity...sometimes at the same moments in time.
tension exists.
I like peace.
my romantic heart and head gravitate toward stillness.
within the reality of life lives tension.

tension leads to deeper trust for me.
I arrive at the end of my ability to go it alone in that stretching.

in the last six months or so, I have understood little.

I have recognized and tried to respect reality...
while understanding
and in the midst of all of the afore mentioned "in all my"s,
goodness is alive.

oh, that I would *know more.
a friend of mine put the word convinced into my faith vocabulary.
I like the emphasis and passion behind that word.
may we all be more convinced of how deeply we are loved
and how much good is to be encountered.

may your week find you bumping into goodness...

Monday, 21 April 2014

marathon monday!

'ordinary beauty'... the boston globe

so thankful that so many got to run today with joy.  
that so many got to cheer with joy.

so thankful that this day of such celebration in the city of boston 
was once more 
a day 
of joy.

happy patriots' day!


Friday, 18 April 2014

last year, on this day...

I had not slept much.
a manhunt had started in my city, and I was glued to the television anxiously
(perhaps the most anxious I have ever been)
awaiting the word that the the surviving brother had been caught.

'remembering the shootout in watertown'

when stacey left for work around 5:00 a.m., as it was a truck day, I was sitting in the chair in the living room.  she was wicked confused about why on Earth I was awake at such an hour looking scared and haggard.  (not long after she left, she called marco and nadine downstairs to tell them I was upstairs looking a bit uneasy and asked them to check on me.  she is a great friend.)
I explained the situation, and told her I was not planning on leaving the house.
soon after she left, my boss called to say we would not be opening, as all the businesses in watertown and 'the newtons' had been asked by the governor to close to help enable the police and FBI to search more efficiently.

constant news coverage.
replays of footage of the bombing, of the security camera views of the brothers at the marathon.
explanations of how the car chase had begun during the wee hours of the morning:
a convenience store robbery.
an MIT officer from somerville shot and killed.
a car-jacking/kidnapping.
a shootout on laurel street, which also involved the detonation of another pressure cooker bomb.
another officer shot in the leg which nearly killed him.
the older brother being run over and killed by the younger as he drove frantically away to escape.
(it is difficult to remember what details I knew then and what was learned in the days afterward from  news anchors as they found out more detail from that night.  
regardless of when the timeline got pieced together, the memory of my feelings are clear to me.)

at this point in the day (as I began to type this post), stacey had arrived back at home, and though the ban was just about to be lifted on city shutdown, the brother was still at large.

I feel the need to remember today.

watertown is a quiet, residential community adjacent to the handful of newton neighbourhoods.
my daily drive to work at my pilates/barre studio took me the exact path that the brothers took in their police chase overnight on thursday into friday.
while watching the news coverage, the surreal awareness of each corner where the reporters were standing and filming resonated deeply.

'that is the cemetery on common st., where I cut through to get to the belmont pilates studio.'

'that parking lot where the police headquarters has been set up is the same parking lot where I parked to get my MA registration, tags, and driver's license, as well as a target I go to often.'

that day, as I sat in my house wondering if at some point, a suspected bomber might drive into my neighbourhood, I looked out my window to see this lady across the street.
I had to capture it.

after stacey got home, we sat and watched it all unfold.

while filling up my car that week, at my local service station, I noticed the flag at half mast.
the ban on the city gradually was lifted.
firstly, taxis were allowed to return the streets.
then, the T-both subways and bus service.
then, residents were told they could leave their houses.

a man on franklin st. noticed that the cover on his boat was flapping in the breeze, so he went to tie it back down.
the younger brother was found.
911 was called.
and, the news coverage followed the next couple of hours as we wondered if this could really be him.

could we sleep soundly again?
breathe a bit easier?

they got him.
he was injured but alive.
he was caught.

truly, boston's finest. (watch 'boston's finest' on tnt.)
people lined the street in watertown to cheer the police, FBI, bomb squads, etc. as they drove out of watertown back to their respective precincts and offices.
the news footage was emotional.

I slept better that night.

the next morning, I drove the normal drive to work.  it was quiet like it normally is at seven in the morning on saturday.  
I saw orange cones blocking the entrance into franklin st, and just beyond a news truck.  
other than those indicators, all was as it normally is in my view.

but, it was not the same as usual.
what one sees on the outside oftentimes does not match the inner struggle, pain, and shock.

but, we did, as a whole, as a city, feel a bit better.
we felt proud of our city.

my story of this horrific week in boston is from a distance of a couple miles.
there are so many I know who were feet away from all that unfolded, on boylston street and in watertown.  
I have friends who were two shops away from one of the bombs, saw body parts strewn along the sidewalks, and ran into nearby shops to take cover.
and friends who had bullet holes in the front door of their home from the shootout.
and friends who had men in riot gear search their houses for the younger brother.  

everyone has their own story of that week and each is unique.
how each of us felt is important and real.
we all have a story from that week.  
one that we will not forget.

I wanted to tell a bit of mine.

I pray patriot's day begins to be healed on monday as boston runs a marathon with special significance.

boston, you're my home.


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

a year ago today...


it was attacked and shaken.
however, not forever broken.
people, communities of new england, fight and persevere.
they rally and root one another on.

I was meant to have been there only feet away from a tragic event that tainted such a normally glorious day of celebration.
instead, I stayed home to nurse a headache.

I wish I were in my boston home today to commemorate, remember, and honour, in person.
I am not, and yet,
I will

I love boston.  I will always miss it.
it is full of lovely, loyal friends who love people well and live life with authenticity.
it will ever be part of my definition of home.

I am thankful for my family of friends in the commonwealth,
and although I think of you often,
especially today,
I remember alongside you.


{photo: @mindykaling}

Wednesday, 12 March 2014


an earner once again, I am.  last week I was offered, and today it became absolutely official.
I have a job.
one that provides finances for all I need.  
which allows me to work at only one company.
to have a space of my own.
a day-to-day desk where I am able to support others and contribute to a team.
in the uptown neighbourhood of dallas.

each of these facts boggles my brain and will take some time to sink in.  
let the breathing into re-settling into a new city begin.  
may the healthy version of kym emerge once more and hopefully continue to increase in depth.




{photos via: sfgirlbybay / victoria smith (pinterest);;;}

Monday, 3 March 2014


"walking your little walk...
it is like a woman but also like a little girl."

cold temperatures today make my heart breathe deep while others feel frustrated and frenzied.  

striving for simplicity.

aesthetics ever important to me.

will it find me nesting?

full on transition ongoing...

{pictures: via:}

Thursday, 6 February 2014

no part.

a diner.
a date.

this picture, I love.
(at a glance, it reminds me a bit of harry and sally.)

a city I miss deeply.
a state I relate more to than one listed after a city and prior to a zip code at the end of an address on an envelope.

coffee or a cuppa, depending on the time of day.
a lamp to soften the light in a room to enhance coziness.
a bed indicating a place to rest.
antiquated bricks show character and life lived.
a window allowing for a view but keeping unwanted elements out.
neutral colours to provide for feeling of cleanliness and simplicity.
saucer holding crumbs from recently finished pastry.
my friend, joel, made a comment the other day that stuck with me.
there is no part of the story that God is disconnected from.
I find that statement deeply comforting.

friends and family who surround and support are the best gift I have been given in my life, full stop.
how overwhelmed and thankful I am for those who love me so well and so consistently.
thank you notes could be written every hour of every day to each of them, and I would not scratch the surface of being able to communicate my gratitude for how each of them have literally shaped me, influenced me, and uplifted me.

as I slowly navigate this time of 'shift', I know prayers and check-ins from these loved ones literally hold me up and point me forward.
thank you.
blessed, I am.

a bit of work begins this week.
every little helps, in the words of my local grocery spot in londontown.
God is good. all the time.
look for the little things.  they are always there.

{pictures: via:, kym brinkley, @madewell}

Thursday, 16 January 2014


Living with Hope

Optimism and hope are radically different attitudes. Optimism is the expectation that things-the weather, human relationships, the economy, the political situation, and so on-will get better. Hope is the trust that God will fulfill God's promises to us in a way that leads us to true freedom. The optimist speaks about concrete changes in the future. The person of hope lives in the moment with the knowledge and trust that all of life is in good hands.

All the great spiritual leaders in history were people of hope. Abraham, Moses, Ruth, Mary, Jesus, Rumi, Gandhi, and Dorothy Day all lived with a promise in their hearts that guided them toward the future without the need to know exactly what it would look like. Let's live with hope.

- Henri J. M. Nouwen  

during the last few days, hope has risen to the surface.

the possibilities of employment have become a bit more tangible.
some bills waiting to be paid have been sorted out for a bit longer which helps the stress level on my shoulders.
a friend from boston treated me to coffee and a chat this morning which helped to provide perspective and brought a wave of encouragement and a listening ear to allow me to process all the blessings which have fallen upon me in the short time I have been in dallas...
one of my favourites things is connection, new or by way of reunion.  in the just over a fortnight that has found me in this metropolis, chats have occurred with friends from so many of the life chapters in my storyline...

I am sat full of

the Lord's plan for us is good and intentional.

10-11 This is God’s Word on the subject: “As soon as Babylon’s seventy years are up and not a day before, I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.
12 “When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen.
13-14 “When you come looking for me, you’ll find me.
“Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed.” God’s Decree.

(jeremiah 29.10-14~the message.)

a day to day journey continues in my life in transition.
I am fairly certain in each of our lives, there is some sort of shifting and/or pocket of unknown.
at times, it all is just a bit more full on than other times.
may we all pray and plead for hope over those corners (or all encompassing parts) of our lives.


{photos via:}