Learning to Breathe

The playground was filled with big third graders. I missed being on the first-grade playground where I felt safe. Second graders had been moved to the main Tremont School campus and recess was now an uncertain time where older third graders roamed. I ran to the swing set and Sally yelled at me to “wait…

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Knowing in Full

In honor of the tenth anniversary of Red Tent Living, we are featuring a monthly legacy post written by one of our regular contributors from the past decade. Becky Allender is one of the original Red Tent writers; she’s been with us since 2013. Her voice has offered the blessing of a matriarch and been…

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Lifting Another

My husband just returned from his annual fishing trip to Montana. This year he fell while trying to get his fishing boat on top of the car. There was a crowd of young men who watched it happen and a few came over to make sure that he was alright. Life holds moments of embarrassment.…

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A Window into the Wild

My father was an odd, obstreperous, curmudgeonly rebel. He was one of the first in our community to own an electric car in 1972. He delighted in plugging the car in at friends’ houses when his batteries were low. He often wore a hat with the price tag dangling from it, like Minnie Pearl. He…

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Change Is Afoot

It was a sunny winter day in the Pacific Northwest, and I had my Miele vacuum cleaner in hand. The endless days of gray hide the dust and scattered debris. But once the sun shines, I become a cleaning dervish! I hate dust. I hate clutter. I hate busy rooms with items not in their…

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My Prey Is Love

I know next to nothing about hunting, but I know a lot about needlepoint. Many of the hunters I know have trophies on their walls—preserved, marble-eyed animals. I suppose they are a reminder of the many hours spent planning, preparing, hiking, stalking, aiming, shooting, and gutting, then taking the unstuffed body to a taxidermist to…

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The Mystery of Marriage

Lovemaking is the sensual offer of goodness to our partner, but when we think of the word “lover,” it seems to immediately connote sex. What happens before and after sex often sets the parameters of what degree of pleasure will last after an orgasm. How little I understood the mystery of marriage during my first months of…

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Gospel Wild

I was driving on a road that normally takes two minutes; it took me forty to reach my destination. I thought that there had been a car accident because I could see a car angled and a few people hugging on the side of the road. Caught in this gridlock, I sat in my car.…

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Surviving the Sea

“Curiosity killed the cat” is an aphorism that warns us to stay safe at home. It suggests it is dangerous to dream, wander, and explore. All exploration is a call to enter mystery that may intrigue but also harm. We know the greatest mystery is the thin realm that divides what can be seen from what is unseen. Romans…

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The Finish Line 

Athletes are often encouraged to visualize the finish line and to run the race with the image of crossing that mark as motivation to finish well. For us, the finish line is not death but what comes as a simple greeting: “Welcome, my good and faithful servant.” 

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