Palm Sunday🌴🌿

& remembering Beverly Cleary

Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it; and he sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut in the fields. Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting, ‘Hosanna!’

Was Palm Sunday more like a parade or a processional?

I have limited processional experience. 

On my wedding day, my dad walked me down the aisle. I remember wondering if we were walking too fast or too slow, trying to keep in-step with the music. I was earnestly adamant that he wasn’t “giving me away.” It is funny to me now how much the little details of our wedding seemed to matter at the time. Now I fondly remember the donuts and the square dancing and the details all blur together. 

I also have limited parade experience. 

In 8th grade, I was the drum major of our middle school marching band (oboes don't march). I had white gloves and conducted the menagerie of pre-pubescent band instrument operators through the downtown streets of Albany for Veterans Day—we boasted being the largest veterans day parade "west of the Mississippi."

All these people gather in Jerusalem for the festival of Passover and they see this event unfolding. They join in, waving their palm fronds like Moana leading a sea turtle back to the water. Was it a processional, like a king walking to his coronation, or was it a parade, with Jesus as the star like Santa at the culmination of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade?


For Beverly Cleary, In Defense of Reading 

I hope children will be happy with the books I've written, and go on to be readers all of their lives.

—Beverly Cleary, who died this week at the age of 104

I remember in elementary school trying to crack my hard boiled eggs on my head in the lunchroom. I secretly hoped it wasn’t actually hardboiled so I’d have egg run down my face, just like Ramona.

In seventh grade, my drama class put on the play, “Beezus and Ramona.” I auditioned for Ramona with all the gusto I could muster. I even forced myself to cry onstage in my audition, really living into the part. I ended up being cast as Beezus—I was taller than the other decent actor in the class and she got the part of Ramona. I remember on opening night I had a terrible cold and I had to chug lemon tea in the dressing room between acts to deliver my lines and hopefully save my voice for the rest of the shows. 

I remember driving down Klickitat Street in Portland and realizing Beverly Cleary’s books were set in Portland

When we moved to Yamhill county, I picked up Cleary’s book, “A Girl from Yamhill” and read about how this land and these towns were 100 years ago. Her mom even started one of the first libraries in the county. 

Books have always been my escape, my safe place, a place my imagination can run wild. My mom always told me, “If you want to be a writer, you have to be a reader.” I’m happy Beverly Cleary was one of those authors who made me happy to be a reader and excited to be a writer.