Pancakes in an old diner.

Kind eyes.

Direction coming into focus.

Holding my girl against me, and feeling her fluttering heart.

Being cherished simply for who I am.

Playing with her hair.

Peace in the middle of the storm.

A drive as the leaves turn.

Dancing at a wedding.


The first steps as open arms await.

Dialing that last number, for that first call.

Learning her story.

Watching my favorite song played live.

The banjo out of its’ mind.

Debating the inner workings of that first kiss…..and the second…..and the third…..

Beating my father for the first time at the sport we both love.

Talking trash with my mother while playing cards.

The gift that showed me, I am known.

Food from an distant land.

A song that paints a moment I previously didn’t have words for.


Freely giving.

Letting go.

Standing on a stage and telling a funny story to an audience, not knowing the response.

The orphan placed in his father’s arms.

Watching him sleep in his mother’s.

Observing my son make his grandparents laugh.

Being present for a broken heart.

Rebuilding another’s house, crushed by a wave.

The embrace when words cannot meet the moment.

Giving hope.  Giving value.

Teaching life through sport.

The temptation to peek on Christmas Eve.

The giggly first game of hide and seek.

A little boy’s kiss on his father’s scruffy cheek.

Unsolicited affirmation.

Forgiveness before apology.

Listening to Gramps tell me a “when I was young” story.

Holding my grandma’s hand when she took her last breath.

A listening ear, when there is no other solution for the pain.

Seeing my parent’s pride.

Telling a troubled teen that he has a good heart.

Chocolate milk mustache smile.

The overflowing toilet, with the guilty puzzled child watching it all go down.

The “read it just one more time” story, right before bed.

Being told, “Dad, I love you.”

My student’s realization, that I really do care.

A Valentine’s Day card in September.

Infectious laughter.

Reading my brother my letter as he left for war.

His return home.

Letting go of the “E”, when saying, “I love you” for the first time….Not knowing how it may change things.

Understanding eyes.

A hand on my shoulder when surrounded by doubt.

A nap on a rainy day.

A motorcycle ride in a coconut grove.

Time given.

A random phone call from a dear friend whose voice I haven’t heard in far too long.

The intoxicating sound of waves.

Conversation around a fire.

Cheers from the one I love, when competing in something I love.

Approving eyes.

What makes your list?  What do you treasure?  Be intentional to remember and cherish the moments because life is fleeting.  But life is also full of joy, and is rich, and is full of surprises that we can never expect.  Let us live well, love well, and pace ourselves slow enough so that we catch it all.  When our time is coming to an end, these are the moments that we will hold onto as well as the moments that will be our gift to those we leave behind.

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