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  • Writer's pictureBeth Hildebrand

9 Things I Learned in March and April


Oops.  I skipped a month.   Maybe because I’ve had more opportunity to live simply with intention lately.  I consider it a gift.  I’ve been overlooking the importance of living the simple-ordinary because busyness can keep me from taking notice of these things.  I’m glad to be joining with Emily P. Freeman and other writers for “Things  I Learned in April”  Here we go –

  1. It’s so fun to hear your daughter learn houw to play the ukulele. It’s not an instrument you hear every day and it’s been enjoyable hearing her strum on it upstairs while I’m fixing dinner.


2. Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman is Such. A. Good. Book.  It’s been on my bookshelf since the day it was released in stores but I keep putting it off because of 3 reasons: 1) I won’t be able to put it down and I wanted to start it when I knew I’d have a little more wiggle room to read (but I couldn’t wait any longer because that time might not ever come) 2) I didn’t want to start it because I knew that meant I’d finish it and I don’t like good things to come to an end. 3) I have know idea how those words will move me and sometimes that makes my nerves on my forehead tingle.   But IT’S A MUST READ!  A MUST READ! 


3. There’s MANY cherry blossom trees in Washington D.C. and it’s most beautiful to see them when they’re in peak season.  I had heard all about them and seen pictures of them but not in person.  I was able to chaperon a middle school field trip to DC last month and the blossoms were in full bloom.  It was a beautiful band of pale pink surrounding the pond in the middle of the national monuments downtown.  The fact I learned about them was that they are in blossom for just about 10 days.  That’s a small window but if you ever have the opportunity, go experience it.




4. I learned many facts about the history of our country that I had not paid attention to in class when I was younger, or skipped reading in the history book, but really…because our tour guide gave us inside addition stories that probably didn’t go into school text books. But let me tell you, our tour guide’s name was Walton and he was in his 70’s giving tours a few times a week.  Those eighty 12 and 13 year old students (and their chaperoning parents) could hardly keep up with him!  He walked so fast and blended in with thousands of other schools and people visiting our capital those two days.  Thankfully he had a bright, orange umbrella he held up when he walked but he’d get so far ahead of us, it was hard to find him in the crowd.  So, we found ourselves often calling out loud, “Where’s Walton” referring to “Where’s Waldo” books where you have to find the guy in the red and white striped shirt in books.   Can you find Walton who’s holding up an orange umbrella?  (Our group was not wearing orange shirts, by the way.)



5. There’s a software for writers called Scrivener. It’s a pretty impressive tool to help writers compose, structure, and organize their thoughts as they write a book, articles, term papers, blog posts and even to write songs. I ended up purchasing it and even though it’s rather overwhelming at first, I’m learning and am enjoying it.  I hope I’ll be able to use it frequently. Thanks Hope*Writers for the information about that resource.

6. I enjoy watching college tennis games. At least Elon University’s tennis games in person.  I’ve been able to get to hang out with and get to know some girls on the Women’s Elon tennis team this year and I wanted to go cheer them on and boy, I was so impressed.  I played tennis when I was a teenager during the summer for fun and even had a few lessons to help improve my stroke and serve.  This past spring when I went to watch some matches, I had to re-learn the scoring because it had gotten pretty rusty but it was a LOVE to watch and cheer for those girls. I was very impressed with their talent.


7. I enjoy hanging out with Elon Fellowship of Christian Athlete (FCA) students. I’ve had the opportunity to go to a few of their meetings and it’s a joy to see their love for the Lord, their sport and friendships. It brings back many good memories when I was in FCA when I was a student at Elon and they bring me joy.


8.  I still have a thousand miles to go when it comes to “public speaking”. That’s why I like to write- but I’m sure I have quite a ways to go with that too.  “So take my broken offering and make it whole….” and I’m trusting He will.  I thank God for the opportunity to grow my faith.

9.  When I was reading Luke 8:35-43, the story about the blind begger I noticed something, that to my surprise, I had never noticed before. That story about Jesus healing a blind man was pretty near and dear to my heart because of my partial blindness.  When I was preparing a talk to a group, I read verse 40 where the blind man told Jesus he wanted to see again   Again.  Until a couple of weeks ago, I had never noticed the word “again” in that story.  And oh my word – the word “again” is used three times in the Message version.  How could I have overlooked that?  The word again means that that man once had vision, but he lost it.  That’s me.  I was born with it but lost some of it after brain surgery.  How many times have I said too, “Jesus, I want to see again.”?  But this time God said to me, “I don’t want you to be normal and see things the way the world does. I want you to focus on the things you cannot see.” Like the hearts of others.

That’s what I’ve learned the past couple of months.  What have you learned lately?

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