The Right Volume

Find your voice. Find your volume.

A Quick Note

Samantha Livingston of The Right Volume

I’m so glad you’ve come. Here I reflect on life and share from my own desire (struggle) to walk with Jesus through both the joy and pain—also the mundane. If I have any ‘goal’ it’s simply to move people toward him. And by “people” I mean me. I’d love to have you join me.


When I miscarried our third child one conversation with a friend sticks out in my mind in particular. Funny thing is, I don’t remember a single word she said.

What I do remember is collapsing into the brown chair in my bedroom, heavy breaths and strained words pouring out of my mouth, before moving to the closet where the full-length mirror hangs, and describing how it sucked to look pregnant but be digesting the fact that I wasn’t.

I’m sure she talked too; it wasn’t only silence on her end, but I did most of the talking and that’s precisely my point. She wasn’t uncomfortable in the quiet moments where only tears dripped between us.

We all have a friend who’s suffering–maybe several. What is the best thing to say to her? And when we’re in pain what do we want to hear? How do we love well? Read more →

water's edge

I set out down the driveway, head down the street, and am soon pounding the pavement. I have two lead weights for legs. You know that bible verse about the deer in high places? I am the exact opposite of that deer today.

I pass what we locals call The Duck Pond, where three fountains spray high and ducks and pigeons cover the sidewalk with poop, before heading south to turn onto the streets which zigzag parallel to the river. If only I could see out onto open water, maybe I’d be lighter and faster on my feet, but neither the view nor the feeling ever present themselves.

Rounding the bend I pick up the pace, but only because a new song comes on with a faster beat than the last. Even over the music, I notice each street carries its own unique sounds ranging from quiet, except for the occasional birdsong, all the way to the abrupt roar of a motorcycle revving up and sounding overdue for an open road.

Read more →

I fried a pound of bacon this morning mainly because one of the girls had a friend sleep over and we’re low on exciting food. Then, after going on a run and hopping in the shower, but forgoing the hair washing, I soon discovered when using the blowdryer to spruce up my hair, that the smell of bacon had fully lodged itself into my hair. At first this concerned me, but I quickly realized if I have to walk around all day with hair smelling like something other than shampoo, it could be much worse than bacon. So I’m rolling with it.

In other recent news it is now 12:04 pm and it occurs to me I have thus far today had the strangest assortment of food. A bowl of oatmeal, 2 or 3 slices of the aforementioned bacon (I lost count), some grape tomatoes hastily dredged through hummus which I ate while unloading the dishwasher, and, after I completed that chore and was able to give snacking my undivided attention, I smeared a few pieces of romaine lettuce with hummus and put a grape tomato on top.

Note: this is my latest snacking obsession but usually with a slice of Havarti. We’re out of Havarti, though, and I was too lazy to cut from the gigantic hunk of cheddar from Costco so I ate it sans-cheese. This combination is so good the girls have even gotten turned onto it. Not nearly as much as me since I’m popping HDTs like candy, but they’ll snack on it after school if I happen to have all the necessary parts splayed out on the kitchen counter. (Hummus-dredged tomatoes. Catch up.)

(Pun intended.) ;) Read more →

I come to sit in the creme-colored wingback chair–the one Jon doesn’t like. Coffee mug in hand, I prop my feet on the old oak chest which belonged to my great aunt, Lucille. It’s hard on my heels and I grab a pillow off the sofa to tuck under them.

I sit still and listen.

It’s still dark outside. I heard an alarm go off down the hallway when I first entered the kitchen, so I know someone’s stirring, but I’m not at great risk of being interrupted. Not yet anyway. The pipes begin to creak as the water heats up and, although she’s the first up, she’ll also be the last to surface.

I didn’t make it up as early as I sometimes do–having slept good and hard following several nights in a hotel bed with a girl who’s all knees and elbows–but early enough to snatch a few minutes alone I hope. Read more →

Last night I had an unexpected date. I think the pockets that open up at the last minute in an otherwise dry and dusty calendar may be the ones which bloom greenest.

Things have been a little strained lately.

And by strained I mean I’ve been even more impatient than usual with some forgetfulness belonging to one of the two of us and her tendency to get off-track. And since I’ve been on a sharply-focused route to production, the one couldn’t be me. No time for stops on this train, baby. Only full-steam ahead.

But, as it turns out, hunger is an even more powerful force than a steel locomotive so when we stopped after the game to grab some take-out, I said, “You wanna eat here instead?”

OT 33-v2
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