Morning by Morning (11/29/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Sharing joy and fellowship with Texas Childrens friends at a luncheon today
  2. The Rice family, and Barbara in particular today. I love her gentle support and fun humor! Happy birthday Barbara!
  3. Any time I get to have dessert!
  4. The good walk to and from my office to parking garage. I love the steps and reflection time.
  5. The conversation with a mother who expressed a deeply open spirituality and openness to do whatever she could to help her daughter through her crisis. It was a very moving time.
  6. Supporting the patients and families who receive transplants, and supporting the donor families who enable transplant in the first place.
  7. Ryan, Ryan, Ryan. I loved my morning today with him, and I felt such a great bond to him this morning as he played and showed off his monster trucks!

Morning by Morning (11/28/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Working in a place where people of all cultures and ethnicities and perspectives walk around. It’s a joy to hear the voices and passions and learn from them all.
  2. That feeling of being productive.
  3. Watching “Muppet Christmas Carol.” It’s just awesome.
  4. Forgiveness and being forgiven, especially in the parenting relationship with Ryan. It’s such a great challenge to teach him forgiveness by handling his mistakes, and to allow him to forgive me for mine. It’s not just cute, it’s a sacred blessing.
  5. The playtime at school that Ryan so loves (pictured)
  6. Rusty Pipes, a great man of faith who has taught me so much about joy and going the extra mile for those you love. His generosity and remembering me is such a blessing to me.

Morning by Morning (11/27/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan’s silly faces!
  1. Having the flexibility to take a day off when I need it to take care of important matters, as I did yesterday. That ability enables me to focus on the problems and not get too distracted.
  2. Playing silly games with Ryan last night.
  3. Lindy Dawkins, a friend who I met through Oplin Church of Christ. Lindy is such a gift in her care for the community and being present to those she is with. Happy birthday Lindy!
  4. The Pardee family. They have loved me from the moment I first came to church. Ron, Cyndi, and Justin are awesome, and Cambry has been my best of friends. They are mentors in faith and laughter that I love deeply.
  5. Searching for Christmas gifts. I enjoy getting gifts and enjoy the search for a good gift.

Morning by Morning (11/26/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. My friends in California who I appreciate so much, like Adam, Jon, Bryan, and Daniel.
  2. Waking up to the Christmas season in the house.
  3. Dr Ettinger, a physician who I have a ton of respect for because of his passion, his ability to talk with families, and his intentionality in his work.
  4. The theme of Advent joy!
  5. The fun of making fondue as a family last night. I love exposing Ryan to new foods and new ways of making food that can also bring him a ton of fun.
  6. The chilly wind that has brought winter season back to Houston.
  7. Liz and Ryan reading together 🙂

Morning by Morning (11/23/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The support and space Liz gives me every day for gratitude and meditation. She appreciates what is important to me and I love it.
  2. Shailendra Das, a friend and physician who I am always grateful for. His love of life, his compassion, his loyalty and his ability to listen and show great friendship is just amazing. I am very grateful to know Das and to have learned from him as well.
  3. Greg Himes, a friend from Pepperdine who I loved playing ultimate with late at night and then ending with a Ralph’s run for a lemonade and 3 musketeers! Happy birthday Greg.
  4. Not overeating on Thanksgiving day. It’s a small win but a good one, and it meant that I had some good Plated meals too.
  5. Decorating for Christmas with Liz.
  6. Playing MarioCart on the Wii. It’s so fun and reminds me of my time in high school and college.
  7. Running water that allows for warm showers in the fall and winter.
  8. Hiking, and getting cute pictures while hiking!

Morning by Morning (11/22/18)

Today is a special day of course. The kind of day where I look around, take stock, and see the beautiful in ordinary and appreciate the genuinely good that surrounds me. Thanksgiving is a day in which a sense of awe and humility in the face of that awe are appropriate. Holy awe as a friend calls it, is a gift, but today is the kind of day I want to cultivate that gift.

My daily gratitude for people like:

  • Liz Bryant, and her loving presence and sweet spirit.
  • Ryan, who was given to me as a gift of God to show me the holy awe of fatherhood.
  • Natalie, Chris, and Tom, some of my favorite colleagues at TCH.
  • The nurses whose faces motivate me at work and help me feel at home and loved, Kristen Schapson, Carleigh Greenly, Megan Austin, etc.
  • The parents of children I’ve served at the hospital who share their love with me and affirm my work and the God given connections with them, like Chanda and Will and Natalie.
  • My parents, John and Teresa, for being consistent people whose giving hearts have shaped and inspired me.

My daily gratitude for things like:

  • A job
  • Good health
  • The beautiful nature that surrounds me, even in Houston, where I can take advantage to find joy and awe.
  • Early Christmas gifts!
  • Holding hands with the one I love
  • The foods of Thanksgiving
  • Laughing at myself and my silliness
  • Sunshine on cold days
  • Podcasts that make me aware of the world and challenge me to be a better human and disciple of Christ
  • My church
  • Houston and all the fun stuff here.
  • Being alive and breathing. Thank God!

Morning by Morning (11/21/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Blessing the BMT cells of a boy I dearly love. His family means so much to me as resilient people of faith and people who are walking alongside me as well. Blessing cells is always such a moment of hope that I wish I could put into words, and when it’s for a child and family I know, it’s just special. I am honored to be a part of this families journey.
  2. All the science and tech and wonders involved in a bone marrow transplant, and all the nurses doctors and techs who bring a bag of cells to the moment of infusion. Amazing.
  1. A wonderful dinner with the Bells and Liz. It was a lot of fun to be around such good people.
  2. Kindness from Liz’s parents towards me, Ryan, and my dog Bailey.
  3. Seeing Reba, Liz’s dog, doing quite well and having lots of energy.
  4. Not driving a whole lot this week.
  5. My health, especially as a father and protector of Ryan for much of his near future.

Morning by Morning (11/19/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Showing off pictures of Ryan to family and friends.
  2. The gift of decorating with Ryan! He was so participative and engaged and loved his time decorating the tree and putting lights everywhere. That joy gave me plenty of joy too.
  3. Having parents who I love and trust so much.
  4. Ordering Christmas cards! This is the first year we will do them and I can’t wait to send them out with our pictures!!
  5. Baileys calm presence in our house.
  6. Creating a new holiday routine with Liz- hiking on Thanksgiving. This is the kind of coming together that is so meaningful to me, wherein our family becomes unique and taps into our collective personality.
  7. Long hugs!

Morning by Morning (11/17/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Miss Clementine, Ryan’s teacher, who welcomed me into class yesterday before the Thanksgiving lunch. She was great with the kids and very welcoming to fellow parents. She is quite the gift to Ryan!
  2. Ryan’s school friends getting excited when I walked into his classroom. Many of them know me as playful and get excited when I pick up Ryan or come in!
  3. Lunch a bowl’s. They’re just a simple children’s snack that I love too.
  4. The patience and understanding of my colleagues at work when life happens.
  5. A working car.
  6. Being accepted by my partner with all my quirks!
  7. Baileys new dog bed, where he can sleep in peace and not on my furniture.

Morning by Morning (11/15/18)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan announcing “Daddy, I’m ready for school!) this morning before I was even ready. I’m so thrilled that he loves his school so much. Thank you Grace for being such a great place for Ryan!
  2. My brother Joe, who has always been a fun person and very loving. I love seeing his purpose and gentleness in his care for children with special needs. Happy birthday brother!!
  3. Grief done well.
  4. Celebrating milestones with nurses on my units, whether marriages, engagements, baptisms, children, new homes, new cars, or other life changes. Shared celebration is just an amazing and life giving gift!
  5. The many thanksgiving and Christmas meals that will be shared over the coming weeks.
  6. The ability to walk. It’s so assumed. But the biological capability and good health allow for so much!