Each summer I look forward to the return of my sunflowers. They re-seed themselves and if blink they grow from a foot to five feet overnight. They withstand wind, and 95-degree heat seems to make them thrive. Sunflowers persevere. They seem to have adapted to the harsh climate of Colorado. These flowers have grit, tenacity, and a sort of staying power. I love to harvest and share bouquets of the giant flowers. I save the dried flower heads for the birds who delight in their seeds.

The Sunflower is a national symbol of peace for the people of Ukraine. As Ukraine continues to suffer under Russian invasions, I pray that they, like sunflowers would survive and thrive against the harsh elements of this war. I also continue to be aware of the challenges in the lives of our families and community. I hope we individually and collectively grow and thrive in this next season. I realize there are always challenges (the wind and the sun) around the corner but I hope to continue to grow, add color to the world, and feed others. I hope we can do that together. Thrive, shine, and share.