I’ve just returned from a visit to my homeplace, the little town where I grew up…  a place that’s done quite a bit of growing up itself. I had some adventures there. I spent a day on the beach with my terrific husband. I walked my pug down to the lake where she tried to eat a mussel and was teased by the little waves. And I got to spend two evenings with my zany cousins.

And I am struck with the fact that though we are born with our very own personalities, where we grow up and who we grow up with becomes a part of us forever. I grew up on the water and almost felt I couldn’t breathe until I finally got back to it. My favorite pals and best friends were my cousins. We had adventures every time we were together … and still do. I was given the gift of a terrific mom who loved me completely and made me feel like anything was possible.

All these things made indentions and smooth places on the heart that I was born with, like a sculpturer’s polish…like an artist’s brush. And though the things that come into my life now might affect the shape of who I am, those early impressions and experiences are the things that have given me the color of my soul.

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