Day 3: Eight Minutes

A triple dose of joy hit me early yesterday morning.

JOY ONE: My sweet husband insisted I sit down right then to open the day’s remarkable Wordless News, adding you’re gonna need eight minutes and it’s so worth it. (I love it when he brings his enthusiasm and shares it with me.)

illustration by Maria Fabrizio
© Maria Fabrizio

JOY TWO: I clicked on the Wordless News link to find Maria Fabrizio‘s wonderful illustration of our South Carolina Purple Martins. You may remember two summers ago I joined the Carolina Wildlife Care Purple Martin Cruise and wrote about it here; year after year hundreds of thousands of these gorgeous creatures return to Bomb Island at Lake Murray to roost. It is quite something to behold.

Well, this year, something very mysterious happened. The Purple Martins didn’t come. After all these years, how do you explain the disappearance of a half million birds?

JOY THREE: NPR’s Adam Cole came to investigate. His story, told in video, is both fascinating and delightful.


Thank you, Cole. Thank you, Maria. And thank you, Tim!


30 Days of Joy

The Daily Grace in your inbox? I say yes!


Maya, Maria, and Grace

Today’s Wordless News took my breath away.


Wordless News 5.29.14

(Click here to see the full image.)

Thank you, Maria Fabrizio, for a perfect and lovely tribute to one of the most beautiful souls ever to grace this Earth. Heaven is most certainly rejoicing.


If you’d like to receive Maria’s remarkable Wordless News in your inbox each day (as I do), click here to sign up.

Friday Love 1.31.14

a little roundup of things that inspired me this week

1. theSkimm, Superbowl edition  I thank my sister-in-law, Colette, for alerting me to this fast, fabulous daily e-news service called theSkimm. Today’s version is a quick download of all the most interesting things about Sunday’s Superbowl. Check it out. Sports fanatic or not, it’s just fun.

2. The Stitch Block Cowl, from purl bee   I covet. Would someone make this for me? Please? (The link includes the pattern.)

photo credit: the purl bee

3.  The Gap from Ira Glass      What is the difference between a hack and an artist? According to Ira Glass, it’s volume. In a talk beautifully animated by photographer and artist Daniel Sax, Glass talks about doing the work to cross the gap between recognizing (“taste”) and creating (“skills”). And that requires some serious volume. A fascinating theory on the creative process that promises there’s hope for any of us willing to put in the time.


3.  Wordless News 1.28.14     I love every illustration the fabulous Maria Fabrizio creates for her astounding project, Wordless News. And this one from January 28th? I love love love. Take a peek and see what happens when an artist (who has clearly crossed The Gap) reports a top news story using exactly NO words. And she does it five days a week. Just wow. (Note: At the bottom of each post, Maria provides links to word-filled news stories if you want more context.)

5. The Dark ‘n Stormy      It’s the national drink of Bermuda, and it’s also the cocktail that got us through Storm Leon. The link here is to the recipe from Goslings. I must confess we added a splash of simple syrup, an option we discovered during a fun dinner with friends at Cafe Caturra last weekend. (Did you know they have feathers hanging in the restaurant?) The Dark ‘n Stormy. Mmmmm.



This is what I think about a good bit of the time: how random are the relationships that bring substance and significance to our lives.

Forgive me for this: It was but a wild act of impulse, followed by another wild act of impulse (or two) that led to meeting, falling in love with, and marrying my husband. (To be fair, it was exactly the same for him.)

I totally agree with the person I heard on the radio today talking about this: The most important decision you make in your life—more significant than where you live, where you go to school, what you choose as a career—is whom you marry.

Yes, yes. And Good Lord it can be so random.

But I have gotten off track. This post is about my amazing friend Maria, who came into my life in a most unexpected way, but who is such a remarkable part of its baseline today. Maria brings all of this to my days: Calm. Creativity. Wisdom. Perspective. Beauty. Inspiration. Grace.

And the art for the header of thedailygrace, both that with which you are familiar and today’s gorgeous update.

And her own remarkable illustrated series, WORDLESS NEWS, which you can (and should) follow here: Studio Ria.

This is what my husband says about Maria’s daily wordless news illustration:


And I love her enough to just let that slide.

Thank you, Studio Ria. Thank you, Maria!

Editor’s Note #1: If you ever have trouble guessing at the news story an illustration represents—don’t fret. Maria graciously offers a link to it at the top of her Wordless News post each day.)

Editor’s Note #2:  This is my favorite.