Growing Older: Reflections and Gratitude

How grateful I am to be growing older. There were significant health challenges for me in 2018. I think of this year as “Recovery Phase 2.” I rest in faith and good care. I also say “daily dedication and small steps.”

As I helped with my mother’s care, I saw that part of being older is the acceptance of how life changes. People we once knew “in person” may no longer be here.

In 1987, I earned the Doctor of Education (Ed.D) degree at Northern Illinois University. This past week, a fellow student, Gretchen, passed away. In the previous many years, Regina, and then Karen, also passed away. I help with an email newsletter, as professors and students have stayed in touch. They all have achieved so much, and continue to serve. We honor all.

Many ways to serve and make a contribution. A blog post that sends out light, joy, creativity, and hope is wonderful. I enjoy reading/viewing posts each day.

Karl’s photos add so much to my/our blogs. Here are a few from 2018:

Lake Michigan
Oostburg, Wisconsin
July 2018

Garden Journal
July 2018

I continue to pray the Psalms. They give me strength, hope, and are both familiar and always new.

Ellen Grace Olinger

“Wait on the Lord”

Wait on the Lord:
be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the Lord.

Psalm 27: 14 (KJV)



I took these photos at Kohler-Andrae State Park (Sheboygan Country, Wisconsin) in October, 2015.


Ellen Grace Olinger

Photo Challenge: Transient



I took this photo in 2015.  I like how the daylilies are bowed to the ground – beauty, grace, humility.


This was the last daylily in 2015.  The next photo shows how the lilies are growing this year.


I love seeing how the light changes in the garden through the days and seasons.  Praying the Psalms, everyday beauty, being creative in small ways – all last, have held true for decades.  I have also needed to learn flexibility, with health challenges and losses.  I hope to write more about this topic, in a quiet and devotional way.   I think of my photos as haiku photos – they express a moment, and the seasons are classic.

each flower
a star for a time

Ellen Grace Olinger


New photo of wildflowers by the wood railing yesterday, and again the light.

Thank you