One year.

One year ago today, many of you wept with me and my family as we said goodbye to our beloved Charley.  How one year has already come and gone, I have no idea.  Never one to shy away from uncomfortable situations, it seemed best to dive headfirst into facing the sadness of this Memorial Day weekend by acknowledging Charley’s passing in a very intentional way.

P1190692I’m not sure what Momma was expecting when I rolled up to her house with the 36″x48″ canvas… and the paints… and the brushes.  Eventually I explained to my family that because Charley was an artist and because it’s been one year, I wanted all of us to express our sentiments – together as one family – on this one canvas, in memory of him.  It didn’t matter if our inspiration was perfectly laid out on the canvas, just so long as we all participated with honest hearts.  Not everyone was able to hang out yesterday afternoon, so we’ve left some blank areas to be filled in soon.

P1190694Who knows where this painting will end up?

P1190696P1190704Not too worried about that though.  In total cliche fashion, this was definitely more about the journey than the destination.  My contribution is the top right corner, the piece that looks like a yellow throne in the sky.  Whenever I think of Charley, I picture him in glad adoration of his mighty Savior, Jesus, completely dwarfed by the majesty of heaven.

Bennett’s contribution is just below mine.

And Brian’s – at first glance – looks like a blue football with its laces.  But upon closer inspection, it’s a watering can (Charley) and the sun (God) causing the flowers (us) to grow.  Isn’t that precious?  My sweet husband was a bit wary of participating because he’s never artistically expressed himself through paints, but I love that he tried. P1190706


  1. May 26, 2014

    Thanks, Suzy … it was therapeutic … especially the babe, running around with pizza in one hand and a paintbrush in the other … and let’s not forget Esther, joining in every chorus that Delilah and Macey started … all wrapped up with hearing Bennett say, “I love you.”

  2. May 26, 2014

    What a wonderful idea! A great way to honor any loss and find some peace. I may have to steal this idea or some version of it!

  3. May 26, 2014

    Beautiful! And so fitting that you get to remember such a strong man of God on Memorial Day. Love you all!

  4. May 26, 2014
    Katy Laulo

    What a beautiful way to honor Charley. You guys are all so special ((BIG hugs))

  5. May 27, 2014

    what a great idea!

    my contribution (though i’m not family) would be a picture of a sea otter reading a newspaper–the time i got to hang out with Donna and Charley in Vancouver was so much fun–and i remember a) how much Charley enjoyed the sea otters at the Stanley Park Zoo, and b) what a kick he got out of all the free newspapers handed out on the streets in the morning

  6. May 29, 2014

    How very sweet!

  7. June 5, 2014
    Louise Purdy

    Didn’t realize it’s been a year. Love to your whole family……and as I say to Esther, HEEl, or is it Heal!

Add a Comment

Make sure you share your opinion with us. Fields marked are required. Any other information is optional and for your own pleasure. Your email address will be hidden and never published or used in any way.


Optional Details

If you like you can tell us your website URL and Twitter Username. We'll link your name to your web address and we'll add a twitter link to your comment. This is completely optional.