Amaryllis the Giant

Every day, I chronicle the gifts, His grace, His fingerprints all over my life.  And time after time, your name finds its way into the Journal of Thanks.
#7  The amaryllis that blooms faithfully and sometimes unexpectedly, inspiring poetry and photography alike
#73  Amaryllis buds popping up in late January, surprising and delighting my heart.
#111  First amaryllis blooms laying out horizontal, taking on the color of tangerines

#118  Tangerine-colored trumpets opening atop the amaryllis to greet the sun

#122  Sun-filled photo shoot with Amaryllis the Giant

#133  Second amaryllis bud growing tall and straight, towering over leaves

#165  Three amaryllis blooms open wide, four more just days away from showing face  

#224  Turning the amaryllis twice a day to keep flower stalks growing heaven-straight

It isn't because I don't see Him in other places, don't have a thousand more gifts for which to give thanks.  I do.  Oh, I do.

But I've said it before and now I'll say it again:  You remind me to breathe deep and celebrate the color of joy.  And this journey of thanksgiving, of eucharisteo, is a journey about joy.  Something you were teaching me long before I even counted my first gift.

Is it any wonder, then, that you should be found over and over among the Thousand Gifts?

I found an old picture of you today.  You came to me small, only two leaves to your name.  Even two years and two bloom cycles later, your leaves still numbered only five.  Here you are in the kitchen window of a life I once lived:

And when we left that life I loved, I didn't know if either of us would survive.  Joy fell out through gaping holes in my world, and I tried as best I could to hold on to life itself.  But you had no intention of merely getting by.  You weren't about to let joy fly away.  Two more years and I hardly recognize who you were in light of who you are:

Now I call you Amaryllis the Giant, with your bulb the size of a softball...

...your pot bursting with life, gradually pushing the soil above the rim...

...and all your offspring dancing around you, giving rise to a whole new generation of joy.

Every day, I wonder at the way you grow, the way you bloom, the way you thrive in this temporary home of ours.  And every day, it's true.  You remind me to breathe deep and celebrate the color of joy. 

You are a gift to me, Amaryllis the Giant.  A gift from a dear friend, but really a gift from a near God.  A gift I will never tire of giving thanks for.

#208  Waking up to the sound of rain

#209  Blueberry muffins stowed in the freezer

#210  Wrapping up in a quilt made with love

#211  Buddy cat cradled in one arm, sleeping like a baby

#212  Birds chirping their morning song outside my window

#213  Dark brooding sky threatening to storm

#214  When the brooding sky changes its mind, gives way to blue

#215  Drinking Christmas tea in February

#216  An apple named Pink Lady

#217  Snow flurries!

#218  Sun breaking through clouds while snow falls heavy

#219  When dinner turns out delicious despite shaky beginnings

#220  A tea named Calypso

#221  Crouching in front of the oven, watching cheese bubble and potatoes turn brown

#222  Sneaking a bite of breakfast casserole as a bedtime snack

#223  Promise of snow in the quiet of predawn hours

#224  Turning the amaryllis twice a day to keep flower stalks growing heaven-straight

#225  Peeking out the window at 2 a.m. to check for snow

#226  Strength to press on when weariness grows strong

#227  Strangers who pray, give grace, cheer me on

#228  Hail covering the ground like snow

#229  When the hail finally turns to long-promised snowflakes

#230  Breath fogging up the glass while I watch winter descend

#231  Heating pad heavy in the pocket of my robe, hot against my leg as I climb stairs to bed

#232  Kitty fighting bedtime like a strong-willed child

#233  Making it halfway through the whole of a book...

#234  ...and still being determined to press on

#235  Evergreen trees dusted with snow

#236  Smoke spirals from nearby chimneys

#237  Perfectly green bananas, all firm and starchy

#238  Warm sweaters for cold days

#239  Half-moon over roof peak

#240  Bedtime prayers for the girl in all the photos

#241  Wind blowing snow off rooftops, making glitter clouds in the sunlight

#242  Cat within petting distance while I work

#243  Dancing shadows

#244  Timer announcing tea time

#245  Nine birds perched in one leafless tree

#246  Pie dough

#247  Freshly zested lemons

#248  Golden peaks of homemade meringue

#249  Birthday dinners with family

#250  Laughing with my brother

#251  Walking briskly in frozen night air

#252  Quiet end to a long day

#253  Sitting cozily in the house while harsh storm rages outside

#254  Friend who gave an amaryllis and, with it, gave joy

#255  God Who shows His face in the Joy Blooms


  1. such an amazing plant but it was your persistence and patience that gave it what it needed. Your list has helped me to rejoice in the simple things that I see everyday, but don't always take the time to acknowledge the God who gave them to me.

  2. WOW! That IS Giant! and yay!!!!!! for the tangerine color...should give you my other two so I can find out what color they are. =)

  3. i founded beautiful amaryllis..!


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