From a Mother’s Heart

Jamie, my 33-year-old daughter, and I talk almost every day. But last week, she told me something about herself she’d never revealed before. I knew I’d be pondering her words for a while. Maybe forever.

“Mom, I love the solar system,” she said. “It makes sense to me.”

“Really? I pretend it doesn’t exist. Maybe because I don’t understand it.”

“Remember that science fair project I did with Styrofoam planets?”

“Um-hmm. Fourth grade.”

“Some day, I’m going to get a telescope.”

“Have you always loved looking at the sky?”


How could I’ve been her mother this long and not known?

She told me all about the upcoming blue moon and texted me a recent picture she’d taken.

“It’s Venus and Jupiter,” she said. “You can only see them at certain times.”

“Amazing! How do you know this stuff?”

“I study the solar system.”

She talked a little bit about blood moons and end of time prophecy–something we’d never discussed.

After we hung up, I dug through a box of old pictures, not really sure what I was looking for. Clues maybe?

Did she love the night sky as a child? 

September 21, 1981. Jamie was born the next day.


Three years old.

She found a pair of scissors and chopped off her pony-tail. I remember thinking, I should’ve been watching her. How’d I let this happen? 

Teaching her to ride a bike, I’m wondering,

When is it safe to let go?


I searched through her elementary school pictures.

Nothing about the solar system.

A couple of nights ago, I went outside and sat in the damp grass. The blue-black sky was glorious–diamond-like stars taking up every inch of it.

I looked up until my neck hurt. 

Lord, there are so many things I don’t understand about creation. And children. 

How did You fling the stars into space?

Why don’t we fall off the spinning earth?

Can You connect with Jamie and her musings? 

It was as if He whispered like a good friend–right into my ear.

Just relax.

Enjoy the view.

I’ve got this, Julie. 

What puzzles you about creation? Children?

Do you understand the solar system?





  1. It’s fascinating. When we had a trampoline, we’d lean back and look up at night … my husband would point things out to us … he knows so much more than I do. 🙂

    • How romatic, Shelli! Someone on FB said she and her husband watched the sky on dates before they married. Maybe they still do. We all should, shouldn’t we!


  2. Great piece, as always. I’ve always studied the stars and planets. Puts me in my proper place with my Heavenly Father. I may be a tiny speck in the cosmos but not in His eyes. Oh, and to answer your questions, since you asked…

    What puzzles me about creation? Nothing.
    Children? Everything.
    Do I understand the solar system? Yes.

    Understanding the Universe is easy compared to understanding people. Lol

    • Chuck, you’re so LOGICAL. Of course you understand creation in its entirety–including the solar system. Maybe I specialize in emotions???? Well, I guess not. I missed my daughter’s love of the SS.

      Oh, well. Thanks for reading–means a lot coming from an intelligent sort like yourself!

  3. Anna Haney says:

    So sweet. My husband and I sat on the porch Saturday night at his mom’s and looked at the moon, the stars, and felt the breeze. He has a phone app that points out the constellations. We think we saw Jupiter or Saturn. Early in our relationship, way back when we were just friends, we sat on his porch and watched the Hale Bopp Comet flash against the sky. That night we thought of those sad folks (a cult who committed mass suicide) who thought the comet was coming to take them to a better life. Saturday night, I sat, feeling the cool breeze, holding the hand of the man I know God sat aside for me alone, and marveled at His handiwork in every intricate detail of that night!

    • Ohhh, Anna….your words are beautiful. I got the best image in my mind as I read. So peaceful. Such a memory, I’m sure.

      Thank you. And thanks for being my friend.

  4. Lynne Gentry says:

    Our children are like little tightly wrapped packages. We’re blessed every time a little bit more of the treasure inside is revealed. Thanks for sharing this beautiful post.

  5. My husband’s birthday was Friday night, blue moon night. We went outside and watched the moon. I found Frank Sinatra’s “Blue Moon” on Pandora and I asked him to dance. He said “What are we doing?” I said “we are dancing to “Blue Moon” on your birthday underneath the Blue Moon.” He said “ok.” I could feel him smiling, his cheek resting on my forehead. Oh my goodness. Be still my beating heart. 🙂

    • FELICIA—-

      Ohhhh, my. What a romantic person you are! What a memory you made!!!!!!!

      And you could FEEL HIM SMILING.

      How I love reading this….

      Beautiful. Just beautiful.

  6. Cathy Mayfield says:

    The solar system? Understand it? I’ll answer with a piece from a book on homeschooling I started to write many years ago, sort of a preface to the chapter to help people know they CAN homeschool.

    “But I was sure there were only seven planets!”

    “Today, we’re starting our space unit study,” I told my daughters at breakfast one Monday morning. “We’ll learn about the solar system and the space program and stuff like that.”
    As the girls finished their breakfast and brushed their teeth, I gathered the supplies and books. The day’s plan included an interesting experiment about the earth, the sun, and the moon, involving a flashlight. I also hoped to begin creating a mobile of the sun and the planets.
    By mid-morning, with a need for new flashlight batteries, we concluded our experiment and read a Weekly Reader about the sun. (Did you know the sun is just a huge ball of gas?!) I cleared the table and put newspaper down to protect it while we started our mobile.
    “Mom,” Holly, my oldest elementary scientist, began, “there aren’t enough pieces for all the planets.” She gestured to the pile of art supplies.
    “There aren’t?” I quickly recounted the pieces. “Sure, there are,” I answered in my I-went-to-public-school-so-I-should-know voice. “Here’s one for the sun, and these are for each of the seven planets.”
    When Holly burst into giggles, I looked at her dumbfounded. Why was she laughing? I counted again; yes, there were seven pieces.
    “Mom!” Holly hiccupped between laughs. “There are NINE planets!”

    Yes, they did graduate. Yes, they know about the solar system. And yes, to us, Pluto is STILL one of the sev…nine planets! 😉

    • I love it, Cathy!!!! See–that’s why you and I are friends!!!!!

      And you’re children survived!

      Thank you. Whew!!!!

  7. I am so glad, I can live a little through your eyes. I was so sick, too sick to get up and go experience the blue moon. In fact, I have yet to be up for a sunset. But when you share so exquisitely from your own view from the porch, your own reflections, those words He spoke to you? Speak to me, too. Maybe for different reasons, but they still heal and comfort equally. My husband loves the solar system and now, my youngest son, too.

    Thankful for your wonderful way with words! Much love to you~

  8. “It was as if He whispered like a good friend–right into my ear.
    Just relax.
    Enjoy the view.
    I’ve got this, Julie.”

    Yes, he surely does “got this.” He made it. He made it all. The stars, the moon, the earth, our children, our passions that burn inside of us. He is the creator. Of all of it. Sometimes a child has traits we ourselves don’t have. Sometimes we have traits others wish they had. But if God made us all the same, we’d be carbon copies of one another and nothing would ever widen our eyes in surprise, or be looked at with fresh perspective, or muddled over with a sense of wonder. I enjoyed your post so much beause I love to hear how we are all different. (Warning: cliche coming: It’s what makes the world go round.) Hugs!

    • So true, B.J.!!!!!!

      Your cliche totally works!! And I just pretend the world doesn’t go ’round. Too big. Too much for my little mind.

      Love you dearly.

  9. Jo Ann Thomason says:

    So sweet! Thank yoou for sharing the sweet and deep thoughts.

  10. marci says:

    Julie, what a wonderful share. What a reminder – and the memories of them growing up.
    It is easy to think we know everything about out children, what they like, don’t like, etc. Yet we still can be surprised! Who knew? And then think, “Now how did I not know that?” I so understand that feeling and I really like the way Lynne G put it too. A good way to look at it.

    You are far from alone in the “I did it myself” haircut.
    And how it hits home, .. the God whisper, … “I’ve got this this.” I’ve needed that message more since my daughter has been grown than when she was underfoot. I can hear the whisper, “Didn’t I take care of you?” “Don’t you know I love her as much as you do?.. Trust me” and “Relax”

    You always find the lesson in the everyday things in our lives.

    God Bless!

    • Beautiful thoughts, Marci’a.

      And who’d have ever thought we’d need this kinds of messages more now that they’re bigger?!?!

      Love you, my friend. And you know, I think you may have just settled something in my heart–that’s sorta what I love doing–“finding lessons in everyday things.”

      Thank you.

  11. Mary Lester says:

    Enjoyed the post so much, Julie! You tell a story with dialogue…woo-hoo..and so much heart! The pictures are so precious…what memories! The last few days from my comfortable couch I have enjoyed finding a full moon peeking out of the trees. Now when you look at the moon, Julie, I bet in the mix, you will be thinking about Jamie..a new memory hook God has given. Yes, God’s got this! I need to be reminded of that daily sometimes hourly. ( I think I’ll put in an order for a kitchen magnet smiling moon with the shout out, “Yes, God’s got this! ) 🙂

    • Mary–I love what you said. “A Memory Hook.” Yes, yes, yes! Never heard that before–or even thought it but that’s exactly what this is!

      I’m amening right along with you.

      Yes, God’s got this. And I’m so glad He does. Because I sure can’t make the stars twinkle or the sun come up.

  12. Julie Gilleand says:

    My brothers loved astronomy. There was a well-loved lady in our town named Erma. She owned a candy store and also a telescope. She’d tell the kids about the stars and let them look through her telescope sometimes. My oldest brother Steve was so inspired, as a teenager he bought a very expensive and huge telescope to study the stars in our backyard. In college his major was astronomy. My other brother loved it too but maybe not with as much passion. Me, I was just along for the ride. I liked to join in with whatever they were doing. I learned a few constellations was as far as I got. But one summer night when the heat was oppressive, we spent some time outside after the sun went down, to cool off. My brothers were at it with their telescope, but I was lying on the hood of our dad’s station wagon just looking up at the stars. I saw them twinkling and I got an idea. Maybe the stars weren’t lights at all. Maybe they were holes in the sky and what looked like blinking or twinkling was really just the people in Heaven walking over the holes. My very smart brothers laughed at their little sister’s dumb notion, but I liked the thought. I maybe didn’t understand the science, nor care, but I did love the beauty of the night sky and I thought my notion about the stars was a lovely thought. One I always remembered. Today, all these years later, my husband loves the stars and even more — watching the weather. He told me his dad used to teach him about the weather — and how to read the sky. I never met his dad. He died before Rod and I met and as many bad memories as Rod has of his dad and his childhood in general, I think it’s nice he has that one lovely memory of something special shared with his dad. Our middle son Andy also loves astronomy and in fact it is one of the subjects he tutors at his job. So I guess it runs in the family, in one way or another. My mother likes the wind and storms. I love a stormy sky. I wonder if we love those things because we see so much of God in them. Our gaze and our hearts are drawn heavenward. I might have gone off track a little from the point you were making. Or maybe not. But it made me think of some very lovely memories again and thank you for that, other leafy Julie 🙂

    • Leafy….this is beautiful. Such a strong memory. So deep. Makes me feel closer to God just reading it–and in His vastness, He cares about you and me so much. “He is intimately acquainted with all our ways.”

      And while He was creating the world, surely He knew how it would draw us to Him.

      So much love,
      Other Julie — P.S. I loved your new ring from Rod!

  13. Patricia Martin says:

    Hiya Julie!! Praise God! I passed my driver’s test for my license and God sure worked a miracle because I did not have to be selected to be retested!! Hope you had a simply wonderful summer with your family.(((;
    I enjoy looking at the solar system, but cannot figure most of it out. (); I know, though, that the moon is not made out of cheese. My grandma spent all of last week talking about that blue moon, and some day we should get out our family telescope and study the stars!

    • Patricia! Patricia! Patricia! I’m jumping up and down for you!! Wo-hooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

      Sooo happy for you! And your grandma sounds like a wonderful lady. Hope you two get to study the stars together….

      And I’d never really thought much about the solar system until just last week. So glad I’m paying attention now.

      So much love to you~~

  14. I love the precious pictures of Jamie…your girl, our children are so unique and as they grow- isn’t it a wonder to discover them? love you both xo

    • What. A. Gorgeous. Sentence. Robin.

      “Isn’t it a wonder to discover them.” You’re so right. Even when–maybe especially when they’re almost 34.

      Love you and all your children dearly.

  15. What a precious post, Julie. I love that you talk with your daughter almost daily. Sweet benefits of a relationship that can only come through an investment of heart. 🙂

    • Thanks, Vonda. Perfect words–a relationship that can only come thorough an investment of heart.

      Love, love, love how you said it!

  16. I think I’ve told you this before but I’ll tell you again: you’re one blessed woman.
    Have a wonderful weekend with your family! 🙂

    • Thank you Dear Lux. I’m smiling at your beautiful face in your profile picture!

      And I’m so blessed we’ve blog-connected!!!

      You’re such an encourage-r. (spelling??)

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