Time for Another Miracle: New Life, New Friends, New Home in Old Water Valley, Mississippi

I suspect that the eyes of my more fundamentalist friends roll when I tell them, over and over, that something miraculous has happened in my life.

After my debut picture book The Donkey’s Song was acquired for publication, I told people that my book deal was a miracle:

A Pitch for #PBpitch: How My Picture Book The Donkey’s Song Was Discovered

I do Believe in Miracles, but not in the ways that some might define the word “Miracle.”

“Every time something hard becomes easier; every time you adjust to a situation which, last week, you didn’t know existed; every time a kindness falls as softly as the dew…. every time a blessing comes, not with trumpet and fanfare, but silently as night, you have witnessed a miracle.” ― Faith Baldwin, Many Windows, Seasons of the Heart

This past Saturday morning, one of my old friends alerted me that another miracle was about to occur. A decent house was available to rent in the old, quaint town of Water Valley, MS. That was the foreshadowing of the miracle of that day.  It is rare for a decent house to become available to rent in Water Valley. For that matter, I had discovered that there are few decent houses to rent anywhere that I wanted to move in Mississippi. I know. For weeks, I had been frantically searching for a place to move.

You see, I am currently renting an old house in the Ozark Mountains. I had wanted to buy this house, but the owner, who was living in Washington State, didn’t want to sell it. [another miracle!] A couple of weeks ago, she told me that she was moving back–into my house. [another disguised miracle!] I was cast into despair and into a frenzied search for a decent place to move

I am normally very optimistic, but I was losing hope, “When what to my wondering eyes should appear….” – a call about a house for rent in Water Valley. I rented that house–sight unseen. [Big Miracle for Saturday, March 4, 2023]

“Miracles were just second chances if you really thought about it–second chances when all hope was lost.”
― Kaya McLaren, How I Came to Sparkle Again

The day after I found the house, I began to unravel the entire story. My finding that a house was available for rent in Water Valley was only 1 of a string of miracles–it was only part of a chain of miracles that is definitely impressive.

“To witness miracles unfold in your experience, count your blessings and be thankful. Perceived small blessings accumulate to be the most powerful.”
― T.F. Hodge, From Within I Rise: 

A couple of weeks before I found the house, I had posted a desperate plea on Facebook, asking for help finding a place to move. I named 4 towns in Mississippi where I’d prefer to move. Water Valley was one of those towns.

My childhood friend, who I had not seen or talked to in over  55 years saw the post, and she re-posted the plea on her Facebook page. Soon afterward, her stepdaughter heard about this house that was available. [I had never met this stepdaughter. I didn’t even know that she existed.]

But the weird tale goes back further. The stepdaughter had discovered the house from another source who had discovered it from yet another one.

Honestly, I don’t believe that any person on the chain knew anyone else. The information was passed by word-of-mouth, like a gigantic game of Gossip.

When the ball of yarn was fully unraveled, it led to the person who lives across the street from my new, older house in Water Valley. Her daughter lives next door to her. Within a few hours, I became Facebook friends with these two people across the street, and through them, doors began springing wide. I haven’t even moved yet, and I already have a host of new Facebook friends and contacts in Water Valley.

“But when first the two black dragons sprang out of the fog … they had merely the effect of all miracles – they changed the universe. … with a sound like song.”  ― G. K. Chesterton


The Lee House

My new neighbors must be Water Valley divas. I am quite sure that the mother is my fairy god-sister. Her daughter, who is next to her, lives in the Lee house, and she also owns the Simmons House, which is a destination spot for elaborate weddings and events.No photo description available.The Simmons House

The Lee House [where the daughter lives], her mother’s house, and the Simmons House are a stone’s throw from where I’m moving. On the following map, I’m moving to 111 McClarty Circle.


Photo Credit: Jack Gurnin on Facebook

This is the house where I’m moving.

My house is the one with the red roof. It is the more modern house that is surrounded by antiquity–it is the lonely little onion in the petunia patch.

My new neighbors have sent me photos of my new house and yard, and they have introduced me to their friends. I have virtually met almost everyone in my new neighborhood.

“There are days when I think I don’t believe anymore. When I think I’ve grown too old for miracles. And that’s right when another seems to happen.” ― Dana Reinhardt, The Summer I Learned to Fly

But Yes! I do believe! I believe in miracles. Miracles happen around me every day–some of them more “miraculous” than others. But now that spring is on its way, we will all behold the miraculous turning of winter into a glorious new growing season.

“What is a miracle if not the manifestation of light where darkness is expected?” ― Leigh Ann Henion, Phenomenal: A Hesitant Adventurer’s Search for Wonder in the Natural World

“The perfect orchestration of the symphony of life is one of the Creator’s greatest and most beautiful miracles.” ― Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

And in its own soft, silent way, winter is also a miracle.

“But, oh, how precious those things were! To look at the sky, breathe the cold wind, have fingers nipped by chill and skin stung red and heart stirred to life … [I] marveled at hailstones and mourned over falling leaves. What miracles there were all around….”
― C.J. Cherryh, Fortress of Owls

I do believe in miracles. In my opinion, miracles are not always about making the lame walk again. Miracles are also the magical, serendipitous twists that occur in everyone’s’ lives. Everyone experiences the miraculous. The fortunate realize that a miracle has occurred.

And right now, I am quite sure that this week, I have been granted another miracle. God has picked me up from the dust and has blown fresh air into my nostrils. Again, like many times before, the winds of change are swirling around me. I am about to start a new life.

New Life, New Friends, New Reason to Live–in Old Water Valley, Mississippi.