911One of my favorite things to do is to help make a house into a home. There’s been a lot of that happening this year. We’ve been to Alexandria to help Chelsea and Will settle into their new house, which kept us so busy, I’m afraid I took very few pictures . . .

Awaiting the Sofa
Awaiting the Sofa
Remy, relaxed in his new home
Remy, relaxed in his new home

Here’s one of their neighbors, since the Potomac is easy walking distance from their house . . .IMG_2373

Boathouse and Hat Decor← We’ve also, in the past few months, been down to Denver a couple of times to help Brittany settle into her new house, which she’s chosen to ornament with views from Sunapee . . . ↓IMG_9256

The guest room is ready . . . ↓

Guest Room
Brittany’s guest room

Meanwhile, we continue to wrap up projects at our home in Fort Collins. The bookshelves are in and filled! Library

Maybe it’s not much, making a space personal. But hopefully, by outfitting it with things that remind us of places and people we love, we’re inspired to offer comfort and welcome to others.

As we near the close of this year, which included terrorist attacks in Paris and elsewhere and mass shootings all too frequently, I’m left with swirling emotions: certainly sadness for those affected, relief and gratitude for the safety of Anna (our dear friend Pascale’s daughter, who currently lives in Paris), but also frustration at the powerlessness I feel to stop the evil or even the hatred and distrust that ensue in its wake. This on top of other acts of senseless and random violence, and it seems we all need a haven more than ever before.

May our lives, even more than our homes, be a safe and welcoming place for those we meet.

Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come. ∼Henri NouwenDecember Sunrise