Camera, Coffee and a Crotch Rocket!

(This is a journal entry of mine from years back now a blog post)

Sundays are special to me. I love to worship God with other believers. It is also a highlight because many Sundays I get ready to go to church with my lovely daughter Grace. This morning I hollered up to her, “Hey, Panny Lu (one of her nick-names) come get ready with me in my room!” Putting make up on together and doing our hair, while talking about whatever is on our minds, had been our routine since she was a little girl.

This June morning it seemed even sweeter because summer had begun and I thought about her transferring and going away for college in the fall.  I asked Grace about her day and whether we could ride together or not. She reminded me that she was going to ride her motorcycle because it was a full day. She planned to attend worship with me, grab some lunch, go to two different photo shoots. So, as we smoothed the foundation on our faces and used the blush brushes to lightly brighten our cheeks with color, we chatted about people and life. Time flew by.

Grace, though the youngest, has always been CEO of family logistics. In fact, when she was younger, I would have to curtail her desire to boss even me around. However, I didn’t want to squelch the apparent ability she had to mobilize people, think through details and timelines, so I just coached her through her supervisory role gently. As is her custom, Grace in her typical way said, “Okay, mom we have about 10 more minutes and then I need to go put my camera in my backpack and we will need to head out.

I then had a flashback to when she was just a petite, young, girl, she would say,”Mom, I heard the kitchen timer, I think it was set so that you could write out the check for our piano teacher and remind us to get on our bicycles soon for our lessons.”  I would glance at the clock to check the time, knowing full well that she was right.

This morning , reminded me of one of those days. She let me know that I would need to take a car because she would be taking her backpack loaded with her camera for the photo shoots and hop on her motorcycle. As I listened to her comforting voice she stood before me. Grace Elizabeth you look so beautiful. Her long, wavy, dark brown hair falling loosely on both shoulders. Her new scarf tied perfectly around her neck as she lined her eyes and applied her mascara carefully and deliberately. “Okay, five more minutes mom!” She instructed. So, I grabbed a pen, notebook, Bible, purse and poured an iced coffee into a recycled cup. Okay, I’m set!

I backed out of the driveway but Grace remained in the garage getting set to straddle her motorcycle and back out. I motioned to her gesturing my question, Do you want me to follow or  go ahead of you?  She shook her head, raised both hands shoulder height palms
lifted upward, signifying,  I don’t care you choose.

So, I backed out, waited patiently in the street so I could follow her. She descended the driveway backing out slowly. I watched as she zipped her black, leather jacket, then placed her helmet on her head with her long hair draping down her back, next she tightened each motorcycle glove, and adjusted the straps of her filled backpack. I continued to observe as Grace looked over her right shoulder to do a proper head check down the street before she pulled out into it. I smiled as I watched my daughter make her way up the street. I followed closely behind her. We wound through the residential street, turned out on the highway and finally merged into the oncoming traffic of the interstate.

I grinned as she weaved in and out of the lanes she chose to ride in. I followed directly behind her. Every time she signaled and switched lanes, I did too. I remained directly behind her every move she made. I never lost sight of her or allowed her to get too far ahead. Even though she rides almost daily on her motorcycle by herself to destinations without me accompanying her but today I was her escort.

I delighted in watching her as she rode with ease down the interstate. I enjoyed
watching her bend down low to be more streamlined and faster. I watched as she released her right, followed by her left, ankle from time to time. She seemed to be stretching out any part of her body that may be cramped or fatigued or perhaps warm on this summer day.

I watched as a few people in the cars around gave her a double take. As they acknowledged the fact, that’s a young lady driving that Honda CBR 600 F4i. I giggled as we approached the stop light because even the way she placed her feet on the ground, to steady herself was smooth and confident, ballet- like . And I followed directly behind-with her at every junction. I was reminded of God’s incredible awareness of and delight in me.

These are a few promises that He makes:

Never will I leave you, nor forsake you.

For the Lord your God is with you where ever you go.

I will bless your coming and going both now and forever more.

Yet another promises floods my mind -The Lord watches over your life.
The Lord goes before you and is your rear guard. That one made me chuckle.
For some reason, this morning, I felt as though Grace needed an additional rear guard. So I followed her meticulously every step of the way and did not allow any cars in between us. Whether I  accompany her or not, God is with her at all times. That brings me such comfort.

We turned into the parking lot, I watched as Grace slowed down as she approached each speed bump. Next she selected a lane to find a place to park, but I went down a different one. I found an open parking spot and took it. I entered the building,  headed directly to the nearest bathroom and glanced at my phone with an incoming text from Grace. It read: I’m in the front with Elliot and Grace.My sweet daughter had again handle the logistics, had gone before me, selected the seats and now we could worship the king together.


I am blessed. It blows me away. The God of the universe, the one in control of all things, has given me the privilege of being Grace’s mom. I loved getting ready in the morning with her but a true highlight for me was to sit in the same pew together and lift our voices in harmony and our hands in praise to King!  We made it on time. I was grateful that earlier Grace had said “Okay, mom in five minutes we’ve got to go!” As I took a sip of my coffee, I thanked God for his traveling mercies I’m grateful that he cares about everything in my life even trafic, cars, cameras, coffee and crotch rockets.


  1. Maddie · June 2, 2016

    Love this. So much


  2. Elizabeth · June 2, 2016

    This is very poignant. Thank you, dear Rachel, for sharing your heart and life with all of us


  3. Abby · June 3, 2016

    Loved reading this! And WOW does Grace look like you or what? Beautiful


    • rinouye · June 3, 2016

      Oh,boy! That means the world to me because sweet Grace(Panny Lu) is so beautiful. Thanks Abby!


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