Five Stars… Five Balloons…and Five Kites to “Mary Poppins Returns!”


I didn’t think they could still do it.

Create a new and lilting, touching, charming, engrossing movie – for both young at heart adults and children — in the style of musical gems of my childhood.  

I’ve watched disappointed, for example, so many fresh attempts at “new” versions of Anne of Green Gables… but in every one, the chief actors are consumed with trying to mimic Megan Follows’ most wonderful performance, right down to her inflections.  So rare to find anyone who offers new facets or character or charm.

As the iconic Mary Poppins however, Emily Blunt shines both as the Mary we love and remember  (“Spit, spot!” she is still commanding her charges… 🙂 ) while  simply making the role truly her own.

I wondered about how they would do the music without the original Sherman brothers who penned so many of the movie songs that set our feet and hearts to dancing and singing long after each film  (and added a delicious and super new word to our vocabulary!) Though the credits do show that one of the Shermans acted as musical consultant in this new film.  Their music had such unique quality…

Well, though I think I might have to listen to this majestic new soundtrack (which I immediately want to go out and buy!) several times before I could sing them by heart, from the opening song to the last the music is just as lift-you-to-the-sky, carousel feel glorious!

I loved all the London architectural background, both in beautifully photographed scenes and in lovely painted portraits… The way  the new story line, though still set in turn of century eras, draws you deeply into the grown up lives of Jane and Michael Banks on Cherry Tree Lane… The way certain scenes echo distantly of the original but add so much new delight… And most of all the way the “magic” remains sweet, endearing, with absolutely NO notes of overly high tech-y or darkness.

There is a joyous vibrancy and color and style to many scenes that made me think of lovely turn of the century English paintings,  Gilbert and Sullivan, images I’ve seen of the Gibson Girl in her striped long dress… and simply lifted me into them.   And as Michael says in one scene, he as a painter would love to capture the beauty suddenly burst on the world, this movie makes me want to do that too!!!!

Though I’d say the majority of actors are not well known, which really made this all the more fun,  I happened to spot a few classic surprises in the Movie trailer on TV — so I was actively looking for them to appear…  But maybe it is better if you simply let yourself fall into wonder and enjoy what you don’t expect…  🙂

I didn’t think they could do it.  But OH… how they did!!

Somehow, I can just envision Walt Disney joining in on the exhilarating last scenes of the movie, a twinkle in his eyes, pride of legacy shining, lifting him to the blue-skied clouds in free abandon!  For this one… this one… truly reflects the heart he created like no other musical film I’ve seen since he gave us the original.

Soooo…. Mark this one down for your Christmas joy and don’t let it zip on past you!  Take the kiddoes, yes… but do expect a movie that speaks to your adult heart just as much!   The clever characterizations, the beauty in sets and scenes and costumes, the heart in the story, they all just made me smile (and sometimes dab a tear).  I can’t wait to go and see it again!  🙂


© Pam Depoyan

Image from “Mary Poppins Returns”


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A Jolly Un-Holiday

“Hill Top Farm, Near Sawrey, Cumbria England -Home of Beatrix Potter”


“Mo-omm,” I moaned, in pitiful voice.  “I don’t feel well today.”

Tossing all night, I felt like one of Mom’s dishrags tumbling from the dryer.  I wasn’t really sick.  I just couldn’t face school today.  Not another pop quiz from Mrs. F.  Not another volleyball game I always fumbled at during recess.  Yet – I’d never fibbed about being ill before.  And it made me feel guilty.  I wasn’t sure I could really fool my mother the way other kids bragged of doing.  Or if I really wanted to.

She stretched her cool palm across my forehead.  Looked down my throat.  “You seem okay,” she said.  “Does it hurt anywhere?”


“Have a headache?”


She gave me her “hmmm” look.  The kind that always seemed to look right through to my thoughts.  For just a minute I thought she was going to scoot me out of bed, but her expression changed suddenly and she only tucked the blankets around me.  “Okay,” she said.  “Just rest a bit… then we’ll see if you feel up to eating a little something.”

I leaned back into my pillow, listening to the sounds of my sister and brother brushing teeth, getting dressed.  To Dad calling, and car doors slamming.  Then… quiet.

I couldn’t really pinpoint why I thought so exactly, but there was a different feel in the air about weekdays at home that I never felt on weekends.  Sort of like even the sunlight casting dancing shadows  on my walls was different, softer somehow.  A peacefulness that cocooned every room.  Still… beneath it all, a tingling of – what?  Maybe… an undercurrent of adventure in just being home alone with Mom at a time I normally would not be?

I could hear Mom humming as she cleared breakfast dishes.  I could also hear birdsong waking the neighborhood and a workaday truck rumbling down the street.   Then… the click of toast popping up in the toaster, and footsteps coming down the hall.

“How about a little toast and tea?”  Mom smiled, bringing in a small tray for my lap.

I sat up.  “Yes, please,” I said.

She perched on the bed, watching as I ate.

“Y’know…” she began slowly, as if figuring out some plans, “I was just thinking – it’s nice to have someone around today.  Maybe you could help with the dusting.  Would you like to work out with me when the exercise program comes on later, too?”

I eyed her, trying to decipher if this was a trick.

“Okay,” I said.

“Join me when you get dressed, then,” she invited.

As I pulled my sweater over my head, stepped into my jeans, I heard the stereo go on.  One of Mom’s favorite singers was belting out her beloved “Spanish Eyes.”   In the living room, I found her dancing the dust cloth to rhythm of the beautiful tune.  Her own dark eyes sparkled as she handed me a cloth.  The song ended and another, livelier one about dancing on Sunday in Greece came on, urging our feet and hands and transforming the work to fun.  Soon we were singing loudly as we ran the cloth over each piece of furniture in two rooms, giggling together and pretending to sing into a hand mike.

Mom glanced at her watch.  “Time for Jack!” she said, flipping on the well-known TV exercise show.  “Hello there,” the host’s friendly voice seemed to boom just to us.  “Glad you could join me today… let’s warm up with a few jumping jacks…”  Soon we were stretching, jumping, and laughing as we tried to imitate his more complicated moves.  Stepping on each other’s toes occasionally or slapping one another by mistake as we moved only made us crack up a little more.

“Whew!”  Mom said, when the 30-minute show ended.

I fell into the chair and blew out air.

“Do you do this every day?” I asked, thinking how school always made us exercise on the playground.  I never thought of Mom doing that too.  Or of taking her own kind of “recess.”

“Mm-hmm,” she answered.  “Only its been more fun today with you.”

I grinned.

“I’m thinking we’ll do a touch more work, eat lunch and then maybe a take a ride this afternoon,” she told me.

“You’re going to take me out on a school day?” I gulped in surprise.  What if someone saw me outside of school?

That idea didn’t seem to phase Mom.  “Well, I need to run over to the “Prima Dona” store and pick up a gift,” she said, “and I think you seem well enough to get some air and run an errand with me…”

Mom’s best friend Kathy, who was also the mother of my sister’s and my best friend, worked there.  What would she think of me being out of school today?  It was a really nice children’s clothing shop where people often dressed up just to come in there — one of those places that was especially fun to visit because of all the lovely things and the grownup way they treated even the kids as exclusive customers, though we rarely stopped by.

Again, I slid Mom a sidelong glance, but she just seemed – happy.

Me on the other hand… well, guilt was tinging the fun with uneasiness.

A jolly bell tinkled over the doorway as we entered the quiet shop.  Only one other customer browsed in a corner.  Looking around, I spied an array of inviting cookies, little plates and sturdy disposable cups on a side counter. I wondered why they were there.

“Hi guys!”  Kathy greeted us, stepping out from behind an array of pastel dresses on a rack.  “What a nice surprise!”  She bustled around hanging a few stray pieces, then led us over to the cookies.  “Like some hot chocolate?” she asked me.

I looked at Mom, and she nodded.

“A few cookies to go nicely with it too,” Kathy said, handing me a plate and steaming cup.   The other customer left and soon we were sitting on some stools just chatting and visiting.  I munched silently, enjoying being in on the grown lady talk, as if I belonged here.   It reminded me of another time when Mom and Kathy had treated us and her daughter to a fashion show lunch at a fancy department store downtown.  Just one of the ladies together.

On the way home, I could stand it no longer.  “Mom,” I said, “you figured out I wasn’t really sick, didn’t you?”  I watched her mouth twitch a small smile.  “I’m sorry I lied.”

“Mm… I knew,” Mom said.

“Why did you let me get away with it?”  I wondered.

“Because… I saw something in your eyes that made me remember – everyone can use an unplanned jolly holiday occasionally.  Even moms.”

“Like Mary Poppins and the Banks children?” I asked, remembering that joyful movie scene.

“Exactly,” she sparkled.  “Only remember… such a day comes only like rare treasure. School is important.”

“Yes,” I sighed.  “But I’m so glad you’re a mom who knows about jolly holidays!”

“Mums the word,” she grinned, making our special just-the-two-of-us day as warming as that cup of “Prima Dona” hot chocolate between my hands.




Autumn Glory

Christmas Wonder



© Pam Depoyan

“Hill Top Farm,” portrait drawing shown above, available in my People and Landscapes After the English Heart at  ASK ABOUT PRINTS OR CUSTOM PORTRAITS DRAWN FROM YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS!   Contact me at

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

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Happy Thanksgiving

Little Boy Pressing Leaves

“The Little Leaf-Presser.”  See more of my fall landscapes and portraits in Autumn Glory




~ Katrina Mayer

 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—  for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.  This is good, and pleases God our Savior…  1 Timothy 2: 1-3



© Pam Depoyan


Autumn Glory

Christmas Wonder


(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

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The Girl Detective (Me) and the House of Spies… :)


“Ha!  Grandma and Papa are NOT spies!”  I scoffed.

“Not THEM,” my older brother whispered, in his superior-to-the-witless-one tone.  “It’s those – friends – of theirs!  You know how mysterious they act whenever they get together for Saturday night cards, speaking in code, whooping it up and giving secret winks…”

Hmm… Well, I didn’t know about their speaking in “code.”  Though, it was odd that all these American-speaking people never spoke English for longer than a greeting whenever we kids were in the room.   More than that, the voices of the three couples always rose louder and louder, until my grandparents’ tiny living room sounded like a cafeteria full of roaring children.  And the way they laughed so hard until they nearly fell over — what was so funny anyway?

“No, there’s a reason they always talk so we can’t figure them out,” my brother continued.  “And I think that reason is – they are spies!”

A shiver ran over my shoulders like a mouse on tippy-toes.  This Saturday, my grandparents were taking my little sister and I to the house of one of these friends instead of hosting cards as they usually did.

That’s when I decided.  Harriet the Spy had nothing on me!  If my brother was right, I was going to catch them!

“You’d better watch your back!” my brother hissed in my ear before my sister and I left for the weekend at Grandma’s house.  He made a sort of slice across the throat, in Hansel to Gretel warning.

I flipped my braids over my shoulders nonchalantly.  “Don’t worry.  They won’t even know Pam the Spy is on to them!”  I crowed.

I held onto that brave feeling all the way up to the front door of the house of spies.  Until the door opened and there stood one of the tallest, thinnest women I’d ever seen, seemingly staring down at me from great mountain heights.

A grin cracked across her stony face.  “I’m so glad you and your sister could come tonight,” she said.  Then to all of us, she added, “Come in, come in!”

I smiled.   “You don’t fool me,” I thought.  “I bet you are the ringleader.”   As soon as we made the hand-shaking rounds, my sister and I sat on the couch beside the television.  Immediately, she was caught up in some program she liked.  But I wasn’t going to let TV distract me from my detective mission.  I pulled out my notebook and looked around for clues.

“Pamela’s going to be a writer,” I heard Grandma boasting as everyone turned and saw me jotting notes.  “Someday, she’s going to write some of my stories, aren’t you my love?”

I nodded, mutely, red-faced.

Papa winked at me across the table.  Not a spy wink… I was certain it wasn’t.   Still, it was conspiratorial in a way just between us two.

The “ringleader” suddenly stood in front of me, holding out a silver platter with rounds of chocolate on it.  Oh my gosh… it was Baby Ruths, cut up in pieces.  “Care for some candy?” said the spider to the fly.

I could see my sister’s hand about to reach up, and quickly pushed it down.  “We aren’t hungry right now, thank you,” I answered for us both, politely.

“I’ll just leave them here for you,” she said, putting them on a buffet table.  I eyed them longingly…but…who knew what she might have injected into that delicious looking chocolate and caramel!  She wasn’t going to poison us!

At the card table, they were drinking their usual mini cups of dark, rich coffee.  Turkish coffee, Papa called it.  Very bitter to little ones, he told me when I asked for a taste once.  Hmm… bitter.  All the more easy to hide a sleeping potion in, I laughed silently, knowingly, with a Snow-White, wicked-stepmother edge.  But if the spies did that, they’d still have my sister and I awake to their deeds.  The coffee must be okay.

My eyes combed the small room, up and over the bookshelves, glancing at the homey furniture, taking in the pretty vase of flowers across the room, the inviting landscape watercolors on the walls.  Very cozy, charming even.  But that didn’t mean anything.   I was sure that even spies liked a pretty place to call home.

Nonchalantly, I got up and moseyed over to the bookshelf to check out the titles.  Most of them made little sense to me.   But then I saw them! Three detective crime novels!  Interesting…  I jotted a note – “Are they concocting spy plans from these books?”

I turned away and nearly slammed into the ringleader standing an inch behind me.

“Are you sure you won’t try some of these chocolates?”  she asked sweetly.  Oh my gosh – had she seen what I uncovered from her books?

“Um… um,” I stuttered, feeling as though she could read my mind and was trying to keep me from deciphering clues.    “No, thanks…”

She gave me a strange look, started to say something, then simply placed the platter back on the table with a shrug.

The slapping of cards, the roar of their coded conversations, the laughter went on and on…  I scribbled notes, but what did they really add up to?

Finally, the game was breaking up… coats gathered… and we stood by the door saying goodbyes.

She tried once more… lifting up the platter… “Are you sure?”

I gritted my teeth and shook my head one last time.

We drove for a short bit in silence till Grandma asked, “Why didn’t you take any of the candy, Pamela?  She bought it especially for you because I told her it was your favorite.”

Before I could say a word, my sister suddenly blurted, “Because they were a house of pies!”

“Pies?”  Grandma puzzled.  “What do you mean?”

I gulped.

And then… Papa erupted into the deepest, rumbliest of his warm laughter.  I could almost feel it rising up from his center, the way his rich singing voice did.

“Ha…ha…ha…ha…,” he laughed, his joy booming around the car.

“Spies, Mabel,” he spluttered to Grandma.  “They think our friends are spies!  Pamela, our little detective at work!”

“But Papa,” I started.  “How do you know they aren’t out to poison you?  No one ever speaks English… I don’t know what you are all talking about… and I saw the funny looks and winks different couples were giving each other!”

Pulling into his driveway, he stopped the car and turned to me.  “Yahvrose, Yahvrose,” he said, laughter like music in his words.    That was one Old Country word I knew… “Sweetheart.”

“We are all proud Americans of many decades,” he said.  “We cherish our adopted country.  But for old and dear friends such as we are, it is good to keep up the traditions and enjoy our old language together sometimes.  Like tasting beloved dishes you shared in your childhood… It celebrates the old and the new of who we are.”

That night, Papa tucked us in with his warm words and hug.  “And you, Yahvrose… this land, and you children are the best of who we are now…”  Words to dream on… along with wishes for those banished Baby Ruths!

Image result for vintage baby ruth images


Autumn Glory

Christmas Wonder



© Pam Depoyan

“Storybook Girl,” portrait drawing shown above, available in my Autumn Glory at  ASK ABOUT PRINTS OR CUSTOM PORTRAITS DRAWN FROM YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS!   Contact me at

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

Join me at my Facebook Page where I display new art portraits daily!  Click the link up top on the right…

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A true tale… in thanksgiving for our stories… 1

“In Apple Pie and Cinnamon Time,” new this season in my Autumn Glory gallery at “Picture it in Pen and Ink”


Remembering Grandma, with thanksgiving


“Good Morning Pamela, Sweetheart!” Grandma’s emerald and gold parakeet sang out croakily, the minute it spied me entering the sunny breakfast room.

I clapped my hands.  “But…how does she know its me?” I asked wonderingly.

Grandma’s mouth twisted to a proud smile.   “That’s because Bimbo learns what I teach her very quickly!”

“Morning John, morning John, morning John!” the old bird greeted my grandfather as he popped in then for a bite of toast and a quick slurp of coffee.

Papa and I laughed together.  “Bimbo doesn’t forget or mistake us, but she sometimes gets stuck like a broken record!” Papa said.

I took a bite of my own breakfast, savoring the scented air around me that was Grandma’s house in the early morning.  Papa’s strong dark coffee squeaking as it bubbled in the old pewter percolater.  Grandma’s taste for the blackened toast, like perfumed char, that now waited atop the kitchen counter as she shooed Papa out the side door and off to work with his large metal lunch box.  I sighed contentedly.

Grandma’s house, I mused, was like Alice’s Wonderland where things seemed naturally to tilt just a bit off the everyday happenings.  A place where a bird talked to you and knew your name.  A place where sunlight tripped lightly through the windows and danced across the table where I sat, like in a cartoon musical.  A place where unusual adventures seemed ready to pop out at me anytime.

“What are we going to do today, Grandma?  I asked.  It was only 7 a.m. and already she was bustling around, measuring out flour here, gathering the rolling pin there.  To my five-year old estimation, something was up.

“My women friends are coming to lunch and we have lots to do…,” she smiled into my eyes.  “And you are going to help me!”

Soon she was guiding my hands upon the rolling pin as together we stretched the freshly made dough across a board.  I watched as she sprinkled a tea cloth with water droplets, her fingers moving as airily as ballerina legs on tiptoe, then laid it across the dough.  “To keep it from drying,” she explained.  Then, rolling the cloth back just a touch, she began to cut little squares.   “One for you, one for me,” she said.

Gently, she moved my fingers across the square piece, showing me how to flatten the edges just enough.  She handed me a teaspoon with a tiny bit of seasoned ground meat mixture, helping me to place it in the center.  “Then, we pinch it closed, so,” she said, “and form the dumpling for our soup.”

Quicker than I imagined, we had them all made, lined up like soldiers on cookie sheets, and baking in the oven.  “When the girls get here,” Grandma said, “we will drop these into the tomato beef broth to soften…”

“Do we have a dessert?” I asked.

Grandma’s eyes twinkled.  “Let me show you.”  From a cabinet she pulled out a covered rectangle cake- size pan as if it held treasure.  Slowly, she peeled off the cover.  There, little fingers of baked pastry nestled close as golden Easter eggs.  Eyes big, I breathed in the lovely aromas of nuttiness, cinnamon, sugar and spices.   “What is it?” I asked softly.

“This is what we Armenians call ‘Paklava’,” she said, as if she were telling me a great secret.  (Many years later, I discovered the Greeks have a similar recipe that’s name varies only by one letter.)  “Now we will pour a syrup over it to soak some more,” she said.   I wasn’t sure I would like this dish, but it was beautiful and fun to create together.

Finally, we had the kitchen sparkling, the table set, and a little time to spare.

“What shall we do, now, Grandma,” I asked, as she untied our aprons.

“Hmm,” she thought, looking at her watch.  “It is time for Rosemary Clooney on TV.  Now we shall – dance!”

“Wha-at?” I squeaked.

On went the tiny black television set in the living room.  And there was Miss Clooney singing.  Grandma’s hands went up into the air as she slowly began moving in circles, bending her legs here and there.  Then she raised my arms in the same way and showed me how to move.  I’d never seen anyone dance like this before!  But it was fun!

When the show was over, we both tidied up, put on our good dresses and laid out the platters of fruit and salad to go with lunch.  Soon, the breakfast room was bustling with several women all clucking and chattering like chickens on holiday.  Shyly, I sat silently, to watch and listen.  I liked to hear their voices and their stories.  So many stories of so many things they knew about and things they were doing.

Suddenly, I had an overwhelming desire to tell them about something I could do.

“I can tell time now!”  I blurted out into their conversation, like tossing a penny into a bubbling fountain.

Everyone stopped talking.

“You can?”  several ladies said together.

“What time is it now?” one of them asked.

I ran into the kitchen and stared up at Grandma’s clock above her stove.  Then I froze.  Something was very wrong with this clock!  It didn’t have numbers on it, just lines!   Oh no… oh no… oh no…  a voice rumbled inside me.  I really did feel like Alice, tumbling down down down the hole.  And I wanted to crawl in and stay there.

Slowly, I returned to the party and all their expectant smiles.

“Um… um…”  I stammered.  “It’s — 3:30!” I declared, just hoping.

Laughter broke like a thousand little pieces of a precious teacup fallen onto the floor and I simply stood there…feeling just as broken.  And like hot water had been poured over my head and transformed my face to the color of our tomato soup.

That’s when Grandma stood up and turned me in front of her, enfolding me in her arms.  “It is good to laugh, isn’t it?  Because it reminds us how silly all of us can be at times!”

“Yes,” said one lady.  “Sometimes the most fun is laughing at ourselves and then getting up and trying again!”  She told us a story of a time when she had made a nutty mistake, and joined in as everyone laughed with her.

Grandma told a memory about the first cake she baked when she was a girl, and how it came out lopsided.  “But it tasted wonderful!” she laughed.

“And today,” she went on, “we are all feasting on this delicious soup that my granddaughter helped me to make!”

“You did?” the women asked, wonderingly.

“Grandma showed me how to form the dumplings,” I said softly.

“They are the best I’ve had in a long time!” one woman exclaimed.

Grandma patted my shoulders in a way only I could feel, her fingertips telling me all was okay.  I was one of them, even if they were grown ladies and I was still a little girl.  That little moment of love, it was one I’d never forget.

“That’s because dumplings seasoned with love and friendship make the best soup!”  Grandma twinkled.


Autumn Glory

Christmas Wonder



© Pam Depoyan



“In Apple Pie and Cinnamon Time,” portrait drawing shown above, available in my Autumn Glory at  ASK ABOUT PRINTS OR CUSTOM PORTRAITS DRAWN FROM YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS!   Contact me at

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

Join me at my Facebook Page where I display new art portraits daily!  Click the link up top on the right…

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When you are considering giving up the vote

This reminder is still vital, to the Lord, our nation and us … two years later…


Writing... Apples of Gold

A call to hope and not giving up!

If ever we needed to humble ourselves and pray for our land, stand up and be counted, it is now…

Thank you, Lord, for our home of many blessings…


“I’ve been hearing it everywhere,” the Pastor began Sunday. “People proclaiming they don’t like either candidate, have good reasons to feel that way, just want to give up and not vote.  But God– what is HE saying?  Believe me – I do understand this sentiment, but now is NOT the time to give up! God is warning us, we are on a precipice in time…”

Inwardly, I nodded assent.  Sat forward a little to hear.

“What we don’t realize is that God is holding us responsible for the gifts He has given us – especially the gift of voting. And we will reap what we neglect or empower…


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Seed Pearls

“There’s a story hidden in every wedding dress I’ve ever created,” twinkled the 90-something couturier, confidingly.

A rivulet of sudden knowing what was coming next  rippled like a whisper over me as I watched this scene from Hallmark’s latest in their mystery movie series, Signed Sealed and Delivered last Sunday evening.  Misting my eyes, for in this character’s words I heard God echoing a memory back to me, reminding me… there are so many ways He invites us to sow into each other’s lives…

To the amazement of the two postal women who were searching out the sender identity of an undeliverable package containing a partial letter and a disheveled wedding gown, the designer – gingerly fingering along the hemline of the dress – quickly and surprisingly pulled forth a bit of  tucked away material stitched with a message on it.    She smiled.   “Yes, every gown holds a secret story,” she revealed, “but not the one you think.  Mine is the story of a secret prayer I always tuck inside each one for the bride to be…”

“Ohhhhhh…” I breathed over a lump in my throat.

A tucked away prayer for each and every one of her clients!   I loved this!  Especially because it reminded me of one of my first jobs after college…   Young, freshly renewed in following the Lord and asking Him to open ways for me to lift others to Him, I often found myself praying with heavy burden for a single mom co-worker (Nancy) who seemed lost, hurting, and seeking solace in all the empty places…  She’d often invite me to go with her to a restaurant across the street after work “to talk,” and I always hoped we might truly do that talking.  That maybe God wanted to open up a heartfelt, healing sharing of Him.   Only too soon I began to understand — I was just there as cover for her to not be alone at “happy hour,” where no real conversations ever took place, but my prayer burden grew stronger as I listened to her woes.

One day, I’d brought an example of something a friend was creating and selling — popular at the time — stuffed bunnies in beautifully sewn outfits, and displayed it on my desk.

“Oh, my eleven year old daughter would love one of these,” Nancy told me.

When she ordered one, I suddenly had a thought.  “Would you stitch a hidden prayer note inside the body of the piece for me?”  I asked my creative friend.  Like a prayer cloth that St. Paul wrote of in the epistles, this hidden prayer would be a bit of His Light in their home… So, writing out a prayer for Nancy and her daughter, I included several scripture  promises of His drawing this family to Himself, slid it into a tiny envelope and gave to my friend.  Without peeking at it’s contents, she carefully sewed it like a hidden jewel into the stuffed animal body…  Presenting it to my co worker, I often pictured it sitting on her daughter’s bookshelf, a little beacon of prayer where maybe there was no other…

I don’t know whatever happened to Nancy and her daughter, long ago grown up.  Or to that prettily dressed rabbit, or how long it may have “lived” in their home.  I soon left the company and moved on, losing touch.  But He knows the little flames He sets through us, and fans them in ways we don’t imagine…

I still find myself wanting to tuck away hidden prayers like  this one.  Only nowadays it is more that I pray over every piece of artwork I sell… lifting the owner and family and home up to Him, asking Him to pour out showers of His blessings, His light and joy, His heart on these.  That every time they look upon the portrait I made, they will somehow see His Light shining in it, know His heart drawing them, healing them in whatever ways needed, embracing them.  Similar to this bridal designer in the movie,  I want my work to tell a story too… both of the lives of those who buy the portraits, and for them, in ways only He knows they need…

It’s something I often do in writing to encourage as well… praying for those who read, that He will transform the words in ways that touch and lift up…

I like to think of God sitting beside me as I watched that movie.  Anticipating my viewing of this scene, as one who has planned it for me to hear and remember …  reminding me how much He calls us each to join in weaving His story into the tapestry stories He writes through us each upon another… if we ask Him to…   Some hidden, like secret seeds waiting to burst into bloom.  Others already more fully blooming and ready to place into another’s waiting hands.

Whose story are you sowing as pearl seeds of prayer into today??  🙂


© Pam Depoyan

“Bridal Reflections in Cameo,”  portrait drawing shown above, available in my Bridal Reflections at  ASK ABOUT PRINTS OR CUSTOM PORTRAITS DRAWN FROM YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS!   Contact me at

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

Join me at my Facebook Page where I display new art portraits daily!  Click the link up top on the right…

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What Irving Started… Let us always lift up! Happy 4th!

4th of July Classic Car-darker

God Bless America,

Land that I love
Stand beside her and guide her
Through the night with a light from above
From the mountains to the prairies
To the oceans white with foam
God bless America, my home sweet home
God bless America, my home sweet home

~ Irving Berlin


Holy Spirit, as we sing and lift up these stirring words of prayer this 4th, remembering the foundations our forefathers set upon this land, even the most stoic gently wiping away tears at the true meaning of it all … O, turn the hearts of this nation (and all nations) fully back to Your Heart. 

To seeking Your wisdom, to discerning Truth above Lies.  And not jumping into the fray with misinformation or believing what only seems to be.

Deliver us from the evil tongues and wagging words of derision and divisiveness and unwittingly letting ourselves be a part of it with false sense of righteousness – when it is really driven by the enemy of our souls delighting in sowing discord wherever it will root .

  Renew a sense of recognition of this, a conviction on Your People everywhere to understand the true SPIRITUAL source of all the tearing down and anger and hate spewing. 

Stir Your longing all around the world each day to pray for those who lead us to follow Your Spirit.  And as we celebrate this joyful day here in the USA, let the glory raining color and sparkle and amazement in the skies pour out a deeper awareness of You, Your Grace, Your Heart for us all, Your Majesty lifting us to true awe in You.



© Pam Depoyan

Happy 4th everybody!  May your day and hearts sparkle with parades that celebrate our heritage, streamers and songs, ice cream and hot dogs and hamburger grillers…family and friends and laughter…and thoughts of praise  and thankfulness to the God of true freedom and peace soaring your spirits like the fireworks shooting into the skies!



“The Horseless Carriage:  Classic Restored to Lead the July 4th Parade,”  available in my Fourth of July Americana at  ASK ABOUT PRINTS OR CUSTOM PORTRAITS DRAWN FROM YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS!   Contact me at

Join me on Facebook to see the many 4th of July portraits I’ve been sharing… or if you do not have access to Facebook, I hope you’ll go to my art blog here at this link –  Fourth of July Americana .

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At Home in the Land of the Brave

I’ve been neglecting this blog too long lately… mostly working on initiating my Facebook art page and creating several new 4th of July Americana drawings to show there.

 This one is inspired by my Grandma’s stories of her first days here in America, back in 1910…  when she was only 10 herself!…And I thought I’d share a bit of those with you today!  🙂

I’ve titled this portrait of a young girl at a train station back then, “At Home in Our New Land” — if you do not have access to Facebook, I hope you’ll go to my art blog here at this link –  Fourth of July Americana  – to see the many new pieces I’ve just added there and been sharing on Facebook!  Many of my others have color added, but thought this one should be just classic black and white …  🙂


When I was five, Grandma taught me that a person just five years older than I was could be awe-fully brave.   Fantastically brave, to my way of thinking.  Well, at least fifty something years ago when she had been a ten-year old girl in both the turn of the last century and newly arrived to a long dreamed-for land.  Maybe children back then were a whole lot braver than I could ever imagine being.

“’Who will we send to go find your sister in this vast place?’ my Mama asked,“ Grandma would tell me, settling into her story mode.   “When none of my brothers spoke up, I said — I will go!”

Grandma’s sister had been sent away to the land of the free to start a new life as a mail order bride.  This part of the story always swept sadness, like a coverlet, tossed over me.  For a young girl of about 17 to sail off alone to another part of the world, never knowing if she would see her family again — and to a stranger!  What did she feel about it?  Had she wanted to go?

“Rose had little choice,” Grandma sighed, “because Papa felt she would be safer in the new land.  We had letters, but the address was vague… and now that we were finally here too, I couldn’t wait to find her either. “

“You went ALL BY YOURSELF, Grandma?” I squeaked, even though I already knew this incredible part of the story.  That Grandma’s Mama and her Papa actually sent her alone on a train in a land she didn’t even know yet!  I could barely comprehend that kind of independence thrust on her at such a tender age.  I was only ever allowed to play within the radius of my own house.  But then my own mom had amazed me with tales of being able to walk and play all around town with a girlfriend when she was quite small, something she would never permit of me.  Maybe over the years, freedom for what kids  could do by themselves just kept changing in that way…?

I had never met Grandma’s older brothers – they had either scattered far across the country or passed away by the time I was born.  But I wanted to stomp my small feet at them.  How could they even think of not volunteering – at the very least, to accompany Grandma on this adventure to find Rose!   Had they been lazy?  Scared?  Good for nothings?

“Yes, it was my very own adventure!”  Grandma smiled.   “A mystery I would solve on my own!  So Mama took me to the station and I traveled on the train by myself to the last area we had heard from in Rose’s letters.”

I looked into Grandma’s shining eyes full of story and memory.   “But – you didn’t speak English very well, yet, right Grandma?”

“That’s right,” she nodded.  “So, I had to use all my wit to communicate with others who might be able to direct me.  To look for and find and decipher all the clues.   I showed them letters with the name of Rose’s husband’s farm printed on it.  Pointed to myself and out to the land beside the train.   Mama had tucked a few sandwiches in a basket for me, but I shared them with some passengers on the train… a mother and toddler who were looking up at me with huge eyes.  We could not really talk, but in a way we did, with hand gestures and smiles.“

“And it took you three hours to get to the town where Rose might be,” I anticipated her tale.

“Mm… yes.  When I got to the station, I sat for a bit to collect myself.  No one would be meeting me, of course.  So, I had to think.  Then I began showing Rose’s letter around.  It was a long, tiring day, trudging from spot to spot along muddy, unpaved roads, trying not to be discouraged by people who just stared at me dumbly, or worse…seemed to laugh mockingly at me…until finally I found some people from our old country who could understand me. “

“And some nice men showed you the way to Rose’s husband’s farm!”  I said, triumphantly!

“Yes…,” she answered, patting my knee.  At this point, I often wondered at a tinge of sadness in her voice.  I sensed there were parts to the story she was carefully leaving out.  “Then, finally, I knocked on her door!  When I saw her, we simply fell into each other’s arms!”

I tried to picture Rose, but I couldn’t fully see her face.  For poor Rose was terribly ill when Grandma found her… tuberculosis and terrible exhaustion from being tremendously overworked in her weakened condition.  Having often spent 20-hour days trudging in the path of the farm horses, working the land till she dropped, she had died at only 24.   Grandma then began raising Rose’s two small boys when she herself was just a little girl!

“That was just the beginning of my story here in America…”  Grandma would say.  “And I have many more stories to tell you another day… for someday, I think, you may write them down…”

I already knew a bit about some of them.  Like the time a horse and wagon had run away with Rose’s little sons and Grandma singlehandedly raced on foot after them, throwing herself onto the seat somehow as the wagon careened this way and that —

I snuggled against her then, wanting to say something that would be like a gift.  “You were so brave, Grandma!” I simply said.

Much more so, then I really understood then…


 “Be strong and courageous,

for you shall bring the sons of Israel into the land which I swore to them,

and I will be with you.”

Deuteronomy 31:23

© Pam Depoyan

Who were the unsung “heroes” in your family? I’d love to hear a bit of their stories in my comments if you’d like to share!  🙂


“At Home in Our New Land,” available in my Fourth of July Americana  at


View all my artwork is available on my art gallery site,,

I also invite you to click my Facebook link up blog top, right to enjoy an early BOUQUET of postings celebrating summer and the fun of the 4th! 

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

Posted in 4th of July and Americana | 11 Comments

Words of Joy to Sprinkle You on Mother’s Day!


“Life began with waking up and loving my mother’s face.”

~ George Eliot

“I believe every woman is tempted at some point to believe she’s not a mother. Perhaps you’ve never married and wonder if you’re disqualified. Maybe you have children but feel like an imposter. You might be an empty nester who believes your time as a mom is over. You could have dealt with challenges, mistakes, or tragedies that make it seem like you’ve lost your chance. Whatever your circumstances, I want to gently challenge you to believe this: you are still a mother…

“How God calls each of us to mother looks different and may even vary throughout the stages of our lives. But what we all have in common is this: we are a powerful force God wants to use to change the world. Never underestimate what God can do through the heart and hands of a woman. We are influencers. We are nurturers. We are fighters. We are Deborahs. We are mothers.”    

 ~ Holley Gerth



When blossoms fall and glisten as raindrops from their pink umbrella branches…  open your arms to receive His delight over you!

~ Me


“Is that a joyous choir I hear? No, it is the Lord himself exulting over you in happy song.”

Zephaniah 3:17 Living Bible


© Pam Depoyan

“The White-Crowned Sparrow in Pink Blossom Time,” available in my Pretty Little Birds and “When the Magnolias Are in Bloom,” available in my Easter…Spring…and Mother’s Day  gallery, both at


Enjoy a week’s BOUQUET of postings celebrating mom stories of the heart on my Facebook Page! 

Just click the Facebook link up blog top, right

(Please do NOT copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

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