Waving Goodbye

by | May 3, 2012 | Uncategorized

We’re walking into church with a group of latecomers when she calls my name and I turn around startled. She is a familiar face in the crowd, but one I have only known in casual conversation at crowded dinner parties.

She admits reading an early blog post I wrote after our family trip to Washington, DC and how it resonates with her. The way I find inspiration in travelling to new places. How architecture and new faces open doors to rooms in my mind that seem locked in the mundane smallness of every day. She asks me to meet her for coffee to talk more.

That random story, it starts a new friendship. We find out, after a few brisk walks and pushing toes into sand, that we have more in common than just our need for inspiration and broad perspective.

Our solo life intersects with community through shared experiences; that comfortable middle seat of common on the row of diversity. Like the time I led a women’s retreat tucked away with the birds.  

I walk down the hall of the retreat center with a girlfriend when we notice the Brighton purse on the shoulder of a petite blond woman with big blue eyes. It pulls us over to her like a magnet. And after we tell her how much we like her purse, she tells us about how she is new to the area and doesn’t know anyone. It’s why she came to the retreat. To meet people.

I didn’t know then, that a Brighton purse would lead me to my best, most cherished friend of sixteen years now.  

My husband and I leave today for England and Scotland to celebrate our 22nd wedding anniversary.  Led  there because of family history, a castle that stands in the North of England where relatives still reside . . . and the inspiration of pea green hillsides, vibrant gardens, and accents that sound like beautiful music.

I’m taking a blogging break on regular posting for the next ten days.  I hope to share what I see and learn, what God whispers over rolling hills, under drizzle of rain, with you afterward.

I plan to share a few photos along the way on Facebook and Twitter. You can like my page and follow me, if you haven’t already,  for a taste of the journey.

Our solo lives have intersected in the common bond of Christ here in this community called Redemptions Beauty. And while I am away, I will be holding you in my heart, thanking Him for each of you.


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  1. kd sullivan

    Oh how I will miss you! Have a wonderful time giving yourself over to the one who has won you over! Waiting to hear all about it!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Kim, I’ll miss you too. Sitting in the airport on a layover before we board our international flight and what am I doing? Responding to comments!

  2. Anne

    Do hope and pray this trip is all you expect and more. Have a great celebration. Look so forward to what God says and shows you. Be safe and have fun.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Anne, can’t wait to share it with everyone.

  3. Dea

    I wonder what is behind those doors? I guess will soon see. Bless you, bless your husband — may the time slow and the days grow long. Just a little jealous 😉 but very happy for you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Dea, taking you with me in my heart dear friend. Can’t wait to share our trip afterward.

  4. Paula

    Have a safe and wonderful trip.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We will, we will. Thanks for the mothers day earrings Paula. I brought them along on the trip. Love them.

  5. simplystriving

    I’m with Kim. Enjoy your time with the two that hold your heart the most! (will keep your son and safe travels in my prayers!)

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Nikki, will be taking you along in my heart and miss reading your heart for a few days.

  6. Jody Lee Collins

    Miss Shelly-SO happy for you. Europe for an anniversary–be blessed and safe. I can’t wait to hear what God drops in your heart to share!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Jody, appreciate your prayers and can’t wait to share our adventure afterward.

  7. robinwalling

    Shelly I will miss your blog, but I am glad you aren’t going to worry about posting. Enjoy the time away.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Robin, you are such a gift to me. Can’t wait to board our flight to England in a few hours and breathe deep with my man.

  8. waterthecamels

    Congratulations on 22 years of marriage. Have fun in Scotland, I pray it is a refreshing and memorable time for you both!!!

  9. LuAnn

    O Shelly,
    I love you and miss you. I miss sharing life with you. Retreats and Brighton purses…meeting new people…God is so good. Have a glorious and blessed time in England. I will be praying for more than you can even imagine in refreshing rest and invigoration. When you return let’s plan …

    • Redemption's Beauty

      That retreat has been spinning around in my mind lately. Plan to write a story about meeting you and Kelly soon. It was providential that we met and its been way too long since we have hugged each other. Love you and can’t wait to connect soon.

  10. charinabrooks

    Have a safe and wonderful trip Shelley! Blessings!

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