Morning by Morning (1/31/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan’s four best friends at school that he loves playing with- Alex, Brayden, Karen, and Elaine. They seem to be such good kids and I love building relationships with them and their parents.
  2. Getting a step closer to having a tea cart in the PICU!
  3. The peace of God that calms me at most anxious and scary moments with the truth that God will lead me beside still waters, restore my soul, and lead me through the valleys and shadows. It’s a beautiful thing.
  4. Southwest Central Church of Christ. It’s a home in a way I can’t ever put to words.
  5. The crisp chilly air yesterday morning in Houston that allows me to wear sweaters and double layered socks and beanies. I don’t often love the cold but it was great to think “winter” for a bit here in Houston.
  6. The gift of FaceTime for Ryan and my family, and all the kids and far off family members out there.
  7. Art fun at Ryan’s school!

Morning by Morning (1/29/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Observing Ryan growing into loving Liz. It’s a beautiful journey seeing him welcome and see her as part of his life.
  2. Catching up with Jerry Taylor yesterday. Jerry was a mentor and friend as I served as his GA for years when I was at ACU. He gentle personality and trust in God is almost indescribable. And I loved getting to hug him and thank him for his support!
  3. The worship at the minister gathering. Those five songs brought out a spirit in me that was for moments, solely focused on God and Gods work in my life. It’s been a while since I was fully invested in song like that. It was helped by singing with the people who share my calling and passion in life.
  4. Ryan’s belly laughter.
  5. Balloons.
  6. Bubbles.
  7. Brownies, and especially the ones with chocolate chips in them!

Morning by Morning (1/28/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan saying he is grateful for Liz during our bedtime gratitude routine.
  2. The Cirque du Soleil Luzia show. I mean, just wow, and what an awesome sight! I was like a kid in a candy store just amazed and blown away by the music, colors, acrobatics, and artistic display.
  3. Fun times with Natalie and Chris, another fun loving couple. I enjoy them a ton!
  4. Continuing to learn to trust myself, as a parent and partner.
  5. My morning meditation and the feeling calm and perspective it brings when I feel anxious.
  6. Hot showers.
  7. Waking up breathing and surrounded by many forms of love. Waking up is a gift on its own, but to wake up loved is even more moving.

Morning by Morning (1/26/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan’s snuggliness this morning. He came into my bed and while being yawny and sleepy, placed his arm around my neck like his lovie and laid next to me for quite a bit.
  2. Ryan’s friends Alex and Brayden. Such sweet boys!
  3. Spinach and artichoke pizza I made in a cast iron skillet. It was delicious. 🙂
  4. Slowness of Saturday mornings.
  5. A play date for Ryan with his friend and his friends family. These are special moments to me in which Ryan is transitioning from toddler to boy.
  6. Jeff Childers, a professor at ACU whose great humor is second to his immense passion for teaching and growing wise students. Happy birthday!

Morning by Morning (1/25/19)

My daily (and late today!) gratitude for:

  1. My awesome Thursday night with Liz at trivia night at Maple Leaf Pub. We had a lot of laughs and it was wonderfully relaxing.
  2. Caleb McDaniel, and the genuine faith and devotion he carries towards those in his family and friend group. Even towards those he serves at Rice, Caleb carries a faithful intentionality and simple love for the other. My privilege to call him friend!
  3. Ryan’s sweet relationship with Reba, Liz’s dog. Tonight after Reba returned from chemo treatment, Ryan hugged her, played with her, put a blanket on her, and pet her. So so sweet!
  4. Ryan’s friends at school. He’s got great classmates who love him a ton too.
  5. The books Ben Snyder got me for Christmas, one of which I’ve read and the other of which I’m halfway done with.
  6. A weekend after a slow moving week. These next couple days are a welcome change of pace.

Morning by Morning (1/24/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. My morning meditation, which often is so peace giving simply because I purposefully engage in being still, not one of my strong suits.
  2. Huntsville State Park, which provided a quiet and lovely hike this past weekend.
  3. That moment when Ryan and I connect and hug after Ryan has been in trouble and I’ve gotten angry with him. That moment is full of forgiveness, connection, and love that means so much.
  4. Liz taking care of Bailey right now. He is there to help her dog eat and feel happier while going through chemo, but it is no easy thing to care for two big dogs, and I know it helps me every morning I have Ryan so I’m not managing large dog walks and child. Blessing indeed.
  5. The many pediatric chaplains I get to serve and learn from as the secretary of the PCN Advisory Council.
  6. Building puzzles with Ryan.

Morning by Morning (1/23/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryan’s cuteness as a sleeper. 🙂
  2. The playtime Ryan has with Liz yesterday. They had such a fun time at the park and that set up a good night for him at home!
  3. The simple but very delicious meals Liz has made us over the last three weeks.
  4. Baileys silliness and love of attention.
  5. Welcoming Chris back from his vacation since the PICU has been so challenging over the last week.
  6. Stretching when I’m sore…so good.

Morning by Morning (1/22/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Enjoying adventures of hiking with Liz! Yesterday we hiked Huntsville State Park and it was lovely walk through the piney woods.
  2. Phil and Barbara Rice, and especially for their parental love for their child, and their love of life.
  3. The Child Life specialists who serve the PICU so faithfully- Ashley, Torrey, and Holly!
  4. The peace of God I feel most mornings, even in the midst of child chaos getting ready!
  5. Those moments when Ryan gets talkative and imaginative at the same time.
  6. Honey lemon tea this morning. It was perfect!
  7. The ability to have a hot shower.

Morning by Morning (1/19/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Steve and Chelsea Sargent. They have been more than faithful in their ministry and love of Gods people at Southwest, but mentors in faith and in how to live in Gods presence. I am blessed by them so much.
  2. Aiden and Ryan and their brotherly love.
  3. All the nurses and physicians involved in the grueling coding yesterday. They would know what I mean by that. But to care for children and families in ICU is also to open yourself to the brutal, tragic, and distressing of medical care to a child. I respect them all so much for keeping focused on that child and that child’s critical medical needs.
  4. Finishing a book last night, which was a gift from Ben Snyder. I am thankful for his gift of a fiction book, and for the excitement of finishing a good read.
  5. The quiet apartment on a Saturday morning.
  6. Playing Clue and MarioCart with Liz. It was wonderful to play games like kids and laugh a lot.
  7. My uncles and aunts who I just love so much- Fred, Shelley, Mike and Linda. They are proudly my family and I celebrate all the ways in which they have impacted me over the years.
  8. The laughter of children, especially the giggles!

Morning by Morning (1/17/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The excitement each new day brings in the morning. I may not be a morning person but between meditation, getting Ryan ready, reading devotions, coffee…I always seem to feel like each day has great potential.
  2. Legacy building with a family I’ve known for a long time. Yesterday a boy died and his parents are gentle yet abundantly fierce in their love. I cherished hearing them talk and build the foundation of his legacy that they carry forward. This is the part of grief that is so beautiful and moving and keeps me coming back.
  3. Joyce Van Houten, a lady at my church who is just positively darling and joyful. It might be a week late, but she deserves a happy birthday!!
  4. Watching Ryan eat a big McDonalds ice cream cone yesterday…and seeing his pride that he completed the mission!
  5. Grapefruit juice. I love that tang.
  6. The taste of good water.