Morning by Morning (5/30/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The family support group in the Heart Center that has been life giving in even the first two meetings this first two weeks.
  2. Pictures of Ryan as a baby! (Pictured)
  3. Ryans sweet hugs.
  4. My breath. I love the feeling of paying attention to my chest rise and fall and feel the relaxation involved.
  5. The Volunteer Services Tea Cart, which I ran into 2 times today and enjoyed Jasmine Blossom tea and a Lavender tea. I loved both of them!
  6. Wedding registering at Bed Bath and Beyond. It was quite fun and not nearly as stressful as it could have been. It’s great to build a home together.
  7. Having a boss who listens and engages feedback. My new boss is great and I am so grateful for the first month with him.

Morning by Morning (5/28/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Hungry Hungry Hippos, which has taken over our household and filled Ryan and us with so much laughter and joy!!!
  2. Our lovely and devoted and skilled interpreters in Legacy Tower…America and Jose especially have been amazing in so many ways. I have been so humbled by their compassion and insights that connect them with families and show their deep hearted and faithful personalities.
  3. Ryans hand gestures…hilarious!!!
  4. The setbacks and failures in my life that have led me to see beauty and experience success at work and in my relationships.
  5. Watching the clouds move, and this morning I saw how fast they were moving. It’s kind of cool and mysterious, at least to me.
  6. Lots of beach time this weekend. The waves are a gift of relaxation.

Morning by Morning (5/27/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryans yell of “Daddy” when he sees me after school or after church class. It melts my heart in love for him.
  2. Leland and Scott Bowers, two friends from high school that meant a lot in my life and drew me out of my shell. They taught me courage and humor at its best.
  3. Jessica and Alex Vaughn, for many reasons, but particularly for the depth of love and courage to be ready to adopt a child. They love God so much, love others, and love church. That love speaks into their desire to adopt.
  4. DeAndre Gibbs. I have had the joy to watch him grow up, learn to be a young man, and mature in faith and life. And I had the honor to pray over him for a graduation blessing! (Pictured is both DeAndre and Keyshon’s family)
  5. The Holy Spirit, and the way it speaks through still small voices, nature’s grand gestures, Scripture, my imagination and heart, and the wisdom and voice of others. The spirit is a gift and it is all around.
  6. A house that feels like home.
  7. The sun shining off the water at the beach. The shimmer is fascinating and beautiful.
  8. Having a quiet washer and dryer.
  9. Learning to play better soccer. And getting to run, play, defend, pass, shoot, and just have fun with a bunch of people. I love this every Sunday!

Morning by Morning (5/24/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Stephen Lucas, for his loyalty and playfulness as a friend. He has stood by me, supported me, encouraged me, challenged me, and made me laugh a ton. Happy birthday!!!
  2. The three day weekend. So nice after a good full week and a really hard ending in the EC.
  3. Our house being unpacked fully.
  4. Cuddling up next to Liz to enter the weekend!
    Looking back and laughing at memories. After watching Liz run after Bailey who got out of the house this morning, she was fearful at the moment but will laugh heartily later on.
    The taste of good water.

Morning by Morning (5/23/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. My cousins Chris, Amanda, DJ, Brittany, JV and Chris D. I’ve got great family.
  2. Helping Ryan learn…including last night practicing writing his alphabet letters and also learning the hand eye coordination to screw in screws and build things! I love being a teaching father…which leads to being a proud father.
  3. My small group and the supportive community we share which offer windows into Gods heart and work in many ways.
  4. The profound sacred power of laughter in a hospital room. And I love bringing that as part of my ministry!
  5. Playing soccer with a giant beach ball with a hospitalized kid this morning. It was such a pleasure to play with this 5 year old and laugh with him and his dad. It’s a great experience to start with in my first week in the Heart Center.
  6. My Legacy Tower 14th floor office. I love the large windows and sunlight and all my office mates.
  7. Trying new coffees and exploring the different tastes.
  8. Exercise, and specifically getting to play soccer and disc golf this weekend and get back into that routine.

Morning by Morning (5/21/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Meeting new Heart Center staff. It’s been fun and life giving too.
  2. The brutal honesty that grief brings. I’m humbled to be a listener and sojourner to that those bare lives and honest expressions.
  3. The charge nurses of the PICU that I have been so blessed to learn from, grow with, and be blessed by- Carleigh, Ashley, Rachel, Donna, Jennifer, Brittany, Ashley, Sarah, Nicole, Dawn, and so many others.
  4. My time as a Spiritual Life Advisor at Pepperdine, which was essentially a chaplain of a dorm. The experiences and laughter and young students I got to know still bless me deeply.
  5. Rainbows. They are just lovely.
  6. Ryans coming graduation from pre-K. I love that he gets to have his first graduation ceremony!
  7. Our dogs loving their new yard.

Morning by Morning (5/20/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The help from Josh and Jacqui all weekend. Their efforts at building and unpacking and encouraging were so helpful.
  2. The little kiss I get every morning from Liz!
  3. Ryan sleeping in his bed through the night all 4 nights he has been with me since the move.
  4. Stacey Jutila. I do appreciate the way she listens to others and thinks through issues and perspectives. She was great to serve with and always seemed so present to me as I shared about my family life. I very much appreciate her!! Happy birthday Stacey!
  5. Hearing about anime, voice acting, and some more of Luci’s life story at church last night. Her joy for her work is wonderful.
  6. Presenting and facilitating discussion at Lifeline events like the one this past Saturday. It is still challenging to present as an expert but it is so fun.
  7. This college teacher humor which I have laughed at a lot watching Liz teach!

Morning by Morning (5/18/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz’s love and love languages during this time of transition and life together. She is quite kind and consistent in her affirmation and commitment to talking through everything.
  2. Seeing my house more as home as boxes get unpacked and rooms begin looking as they are supposed to.
  3. All the PICU Fellows that I have worked with over the years, including Nirica, Rich, Ryan, Corey, Emily, Erin, Jaime, Melanie, Spencer, Nate, and so many others. I have learned so much from them.
  4. Josh and Joe, my brothers. I am so proud of their personalities as helpers and friends.
  5. Ryan talking so much this morning. It makes me laugh with love to see his comfort with his life so he can share freely.
  6. The new and coming challenge of taking on the Heart Center as a chaplain. I look forward to being challenged by some experiences I don’t often encounter.
  7. The sunshine that comes after rain. I love the way the sun shines in the mist of off wet grass and plants.

Morning by Morning (5/16/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The three movers who were absolutely amazing yesterday and very kind and careful, especially with Ryan around.
  2. Finally getting everything in last night. That was a relief
  3. Watching Ryans excitement with a new place and seeing his room come together again.
  4. Performing a baptism yesterday. It wasn’t a joyful occasion but for a family that was disconnected from pastors because of bad previous experiences, I got to be a little light to them in a dark time.
  5. The loving and affirming gratitude I have received from the nursing staff in PICU. This has meant a lot to me, hearing from staff I love and staff I didn’t know so well and staff I didn’t even know had seen good work in me. What a treasure!
  6. My chaplain friend Matt Schlageter. I love his love of FSU, especially now that I am in the family, and I love his consistent voice for justice. Happy birthday Matt!
  7. My cousin Chris Denham. I appreciate his love for family and his kids, and I cherish all my great memories with him as kids in Cali.
  8. AC. Since it’s still pretty early in the summer heat, I didn’t realize how much I valued the AC. Wow. The machine is not quite turning on at our new place, and it will be fixed this morning. Last night with moving boxes and trying to nestle in bed, it was fairly warm and humid! Can’t wait for the relief of AC.
  9. The joy on childrens faces. Contagious.
  10. Beach sunrises.

Morning by Morning (5/14/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz, for being a great partner traveling to a wedding, crying with me at two children’s memorial, caring for me during my 24 hour sickness, and packed with me.
  2. Peace Cowens for coming over and packing for me while I had to collapse in exhaustion and fever after getting sick. She was a trooper and more than kind helping me out.
  3. Ryans random hug and joy that I was feeling better this morning. Beautiful.
  4. Ryans growing comfort with letters and numbers (pictures)
  5. One more sleep till a new place and new beginning for our family.
  6. Packing no more. On to unpacking!!
  7. The wonderful support of my friends, Liz’s friends, and both our sets of parents as we are transitioning.