Tag: Illness and Health

the view has changed

With the ash tree gone, the view has changed. I watch a different sky. Before dawn today, the light through the clouds, that spanned the horizon, was similar to how the snow rested on the long evergreen branches. The branches extend to part of the view through the window – the whole tree is not seen. I thought, “This is a poem.” Hope I can write the poem. Perhaps another image will arrive.

I have watched the weathered trees, as you know, and noted the harder times in a tree’s life. Revised my views about beauty and age. There are spaces without new growth in the interesting and beautiful trees. Because I have been posting here since December 2009, my blog archives are like that too now.

This morning, I remembered this Bible verse:
“for when I am weak, then am I strong”
2 Corinthians 12: 10b ( KJV).

Good can grow from the hard times. This I know, and learn again and again.

Ellen Grace Olinger


Christmas memories
and timeless thoughts

I think of a collage of words and photos from different posts, or perhaps reflections to develop more.  Much begins here.  

Examples are:

all the year has held still holds

a hard year a good year

years go by
and some things
have not changed
rather have grown

Years and years ago, when I was a graduate student in education, I had courses in research.  I surely feel I reached my limits with math and science, though as I spent lots of time in study, I gradually grew in these areas.  My gift was being able to integrate material from a wide variety of sources.  Illness changed the course of my life, yet also blessed me in the long run.  My parents grew up in an economic depression, and they did not expect life to be easy.  My mother’s parents had both died before I was born.  I think I am like her mother, my grandmother Grace.  My mother said things like, “God works in mysterious ways.”  Dad said to me once, “Everything will be OK in the end.”  They modeled service.

I have stayed in touch with former professors, friends, and colleagues.  They supported me in times of loss.  Believed I could achieve.  And when one chapter ended, encouragement for the next.  More gratitude.

Some of my major lessons were that being flexible and able to adjust to change are important for happiness.  I learn slowly, hopefully well, over time.  “Deeper Places.”

Many ways to create, grow, make a contribution.  I could not have imagined blogs back then!

For health reasons, I did not drive for most of the summer.  I waited to feel stronger again.  Karl drove us to many parks, and I am enjoying sharing some of his photos again.  My mother did not drive, and she used the bus system in Milwaukee for work.  After my father died, she knew how to navigate for volunteer work.  She taught English at a church to people new to our country.  How she loved this work.

Greenwing Drive retention ponds
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
July 17, 2018

With a grateful heart,

Ellen Grace Olinger

December begins

December begins
and winter is already

days are short
and colder

grateful for rest
this year that began
stronger for me

or so it seemed

then a valley

and new strength

new poems
new dreams

taking care and
following instructions
every day

because I trust this care
this kind and good care

keeping a health journal
at peace in my heart

daily dedication
and content with small steps


Thank you and blessings,
Ellen Grace Olinger

“Thou tellest my wanderings”

Thou tellest my wanderings:
put thou my tears into thy bottle:
are they not in the book?

Psalm 56: 8 (KJV)

tears that were not
cried at the time

kindness that carried
me along to words

and poems that may
sometimes be tears too

Favorite photo from Spring 2016
Flowers from a store
Winter 2017

Ellen Grace Olinger

Shapes Of Snow

shapes of snow
along the evergreen

they stay there
on this morning
of little wind

sun on the birch tree
outside my window
and trees further away

so many seasons
and life chapters
in this little room

illness and new health
caregiving and griefs
healing and then
new challenges

the stability
of praying the Psalms
taking good care
receiving good care

creating new posts
my archives a journal
of growth and hope
beauty and trust

His ways beyond mine
and unconditional love

grateful to grow older
heart full of peace and


Blessings, Ellen