Our Voice: Bombings make us pause and think about our lives

Monday's bombings at the Boston Marathon are sobering, still. In fact, now that the initial shock has worn off, we have a reason to take inventory today of the things we are grateful for as individuals and as a community.

Life can change quite quickly -- in a heartbeat, if you will.

Expressing gratitude makes us realize the good things in our lives. And, you never know which words will be your last. Wouldn't it be great if they were words of love?

Organ donor

Some dates are seared into our memories. For the family of Sierra Murray, Oct. 20, 2011, is one of those times.

That's the day she was hit by a car. She died a week later. Her kidneys and liver were donated.

This week, Sierra's family was honored by Gov. Jay Inslee along with five other donors' families in Washington.

In reading about Sierra's life, we're sure her family misses her every minute and still long to have her with them. But we're also sure they are grateful for the time they had with her -- short as it was.

The family's generosity gave life to someone else. It's a hard trade. But we're grateful for people who donate organs.

It is the gift of life.

Swing at cancer

Hannah Davison organized a golf tournament to benefit people with cancer. It is also her culminating project at Kamiakin High School in Kennewick.

In first grade, Hannah was diagnosed with cancer and spent a long year fighting her way back to health.

The end result, according to Hannah, "It made my heart bigger."

We suspect some culminating projects are just one more thing to check off the graduation requirement list.

This one, however, has personal meaning, and it seems to have sparked an interest in a possible career.

Once again, you can't spread around goodness without getting some on yourself.

Asparagus season

It seems like asparagus gets a little ink in this column every year about this time. We typically acknowledge the contribution agriculture brings to the Mid-Columbia. Sometimes it's a springboard to talk about farm labor. Today it seems appropriate to talk about spring -- and hope.

Spring is deceptive with its teasings of warm weather, sharply followed by yet another blast of cold. But when the asparagus starts up through the soil, we finally feel like winter is honestly past.

There's something renewing and comforting about those green little spears.

Sometimes in our seasons of sadness, there is nothing more to do than hope for -- and hang onto -- the first signs of spring.

It's something to be grateful for.