Quotes from the Peanut Gallery

Here are some quirky quotes from the peanut gallery.


4 year old: “Can you dance like me?”

3 year old: “No, I can dance like myself.”


4 year old: “Hey! The spider I was catching got away. And he didn’t even leave footprints!”

4 year old: “This woodbug is going to be my real pet. I’ll call him Bubsy. Actually, no, Twinkle.”

Potty Training


Me: “You go pee, honey, like a big girl.”

3 year old: “Yeah, I’m a big girl now. I’m going to peep.”

Me: “After your turn I’ll go pee too.”

3 year old: “Yeah, you’re big, too…like a giant, or a mom, or a dad, or a fire worker, or a vampire…actually, no, not a vampire…I was just pretending that you’re big.”


6 year old: “Why is grandpa lying down?”

Me: “He has a sore back…his sciatic nerve is giving him trouble, like I have when I’m pregnant.”

6 year old: “But Grandpa’s not pregnant.”

Me: “Nope!”

4 year old: “That’s cause babies don’t like boys, only mommies.”




The Consolation of Beauty

Since sorrow hit my heart I’ve become more of a photographer. I hoard the consolation of beauty the way a dragon does pearls.   

There is something about the ruggedness of naked branches, tangled and bare, but alluring, that speaks to me. They seem to say, “We have been stripped of everything but hope, and though we seem lifeless, sap pulses within us, and new buds will sprout again from our fingertips.”





Loving and Giving

Anna Eastland:

I just love this snippet of truth which really grabbed me. It’s so true that in giving of ourselves we become more who we really are deep down inside, under all the layers that hide the light within.

Originally posted on Merging Traffic:

True loving is
that giving of self
in which we become
more of our self.

© 2015 Dennis Ference

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The Stomach Storm: A Children’s Poem

‘Cause writing a silly poem is the best response to 2 am tummy bugs…  

Upon the arrival of the Stomach Storm

and lest we climb Mt. Doom,

we attacked the land with broom in hand

and Lysol weapons, too.



We sailed the sea of Bubble Bath

and towel-clad began

the ascent of Mt. Laundry,

at it’s highest since the world began.



We prepared to imbibe

that blessed drink,

elixir for the storm,

’tis called Ginger Ale

I think, in its sparkly form.



And slowly sunny skies appeared

o’er the land of Tummy,

the noxious gases disappeared

and soon again our suppers will be yummy.



“The Wounded Healer” by Henri Nouwen 


Shortly after I lost my baby Josephine in labour nearly 6 months ago, a friend lent me this book by Henri Nouwen: “The Wounded Healer: In our woundedness, we can become a source of life for others.”  The idea expressed in the subtitle caught my attention, because it spoke a truth that I had recently discovered myself…that my pain and brokenness had become a means of connecting deeply with others, and of helping them release their own pain. 

This process is not one of having all the right consoling things to say, or of having found a magic solution to blot out pain. Emotional healing is not about making pain disappear, but about learning how to live with it while maintaining a sense of hope and joy. 

There is a huge difference here, because one involves living in the reality of our broken world, with a hope that transcends it, while the other involves hoping in a world that doesn’t exist in the present…one without any suffering. 

Acceptance or denial, peace or rebellion. Choices we make every day when we live in pain. 

The world may tell us that life is not worth living when there is deep pain, and that the supposed nothingness of death would be better. But I can honestly say that there are things pain does which are very beautiful: 

Pain breaks down barriers between people and connects hearts. 

Pain makes beauty stand out in sharp relief, and helps one appreciate what was previously taken for granted. 

Pain burns away the fear of being authentically yourself, because the petty concern of what others might think ceases to matter as much. 

Pain rips open your heart to let the world in; no longer do you judge those who are struggling. 

Pain makes you rely on God, because your spirit needs support to bear this weight gracefully. Meaning with God’s grace. With prayer. 

Connection. Gratitude. Authenticity. Compassion. Interior growth. These are all pretty big gifts. They make life more beautiful and worth living. 

When you truly suffer, your heart hurts deeply, but loves more deeply as well. And this love, coming from a humble place of pain mingled with hope, can be a source of life for others. 



Eat My Heart Out

Sorrow creeps into my heart

like a crazy caterpillar

and eats everything in sight.


 Then falls exhausted

into a dreamy upside down slumber,

while the delicate paper-thin chrysalis

pulses with new life—

silent transformation. 

From the broken walls of my heart

emerges a vivacious hope,

bourne up on the wings

of a butterfly.