a new year...many blessings...

Things here at Chez Lenaburg are moving forward at a very clipped pace this New Year. Miss Courtney is finally responding positively to the re-calibration of her VNS device after a pretty rough start. She is smiling once again and is more alert everyday. We still have a ways to go but I am pleased with the direction we're headed in.

This new year snuck up on me. One day I was hanging stockings and before you knew it I was writing 2012 on my checks. Time truly does move much quicker the older I get. With all the recent stress with Miss Courtney's health, I promised myself that I would take a deep breath each morning helping me to stay in the moment. I try to soak in every smile, giggle and snuggle that the good days have to offer so that I had more strength to survive the bad days.

Even in the midst of the busy holiday, the medical emergencies with Courtney, cooking, cleaning, de-cluttering the house room by room, rearranging two bedrooms, pulling up carpet and scrubbing floors until my shoulders were screaming, God was present in all of it.

He really was. He was there in the high fives my hubby and I exchanged after defeating 30 year old carpet with out lungs still intact.

He was there when our son graduated form Northern Virginia Community College with his Associates of Arts Degree. Not the first path he started down but God provided the guidance and perseverance to find his way through some serious emotional weeds. So proud of my boy!

He was there in the simple things like making my first lemon meringue pie and having the lemon curd NOT curdle. Trust me when I say I was praying the entire time and every thing turned out beautifully.

What??

I pray every single time I am in the kitchen and some times it sounds more like begging..."Please God, please God make this work!"

But the blessings don't just come in the kitchen. They come in the renewed patience I feel these days to give myself a break from all the negative self-talk and perfectionism that bears down on me every single day. It's quite difficult to start new habits but I am determined for the betterment of my life and my family's.

One day, one step at a time.

Life is a marathon not a sprint...thank goodness because I am way out of shape...I would puke if I had to sprint!

So many blessings, so many gifts given freely from above with grace and mercy:
#693 ~ #733
#693 - new cookbooks....yea!
* all the culinary possibilities that new cookbooks bring to my kitchen
* clean counter and newly organized kitchen cabinets that allow me to work quickly and efficiently
* bowls of creamy, hearty soup
* fresh baked bread slathered in fresh "churned" butter
* the smile on my beloved's face when carving the roast beast for Sunday supper
* the feeling of providing well for thos you love
* patience that stretches over my life forcing me to stop and listen to where God needs me to be
* new habits, old habits, there all the same just dusted off 
* the blessing of praying for other sick children after so many have prayed for mine
* for the miraculous birth and healing of Miles Powers...God is good all the time and He hears EVERY prayer prayed...EVERY single one. This time, He chose to heal and for that we sing His praises!
* for the renewed purpose a New Year brings to those life long goals staring up at me from an old faded piece of notebook paper
#704 - Sunday afternoon naps...sweet...
* for sleeping daughter and Sunday afternoon nap times.
* for the gift of my sight and all it allows me to take in 
* to finally understand my relationship with food and how it mimics the way I feel about money. HUGE aha moment this week. Thank you Lord Jesus...thank you!
* praise for Miss Caryl's doctors to discover what was wrong and to fix it!
* praise for Jonathan's achieving his AA diploma. Now prayers begin for what the next step is
* for water bottles jiggling with warm goodness clothed in flannel and fleece
* a toasty bed to crawl into due to those fabulous water bottles
* warm feet in wool socks
* for friends to pray with and for
* hugs...lots of hugs...
#714 - Magic buttonholes...
* for sewing machines that create beautiful buttonholes
* praise for actually finishing a sewing project from start to finish
* praise for a sewing instructor that always encouraged - no matter how beginner my mistake was
* for a graphic print that makes me feel smaller instead of the size of my Grandmothers sofa
* straight line sewing
* measuring twice, cutting once
* praise for a fabulous sewing partner, Miss Pam! For her encouragement and positive attitude
* praise for the sewing machine department being close by my classroom and for the staff that calmed me down as my tension was all flubbed up causing much "tension" in me to rise up!!
* a sewing machine that sews once more...yea!!
#723 -  unexpected generosity...so appreciated...
* for the generosity of a family who lost their son and donated his lift and we are the blessed recipients
* for the smile on my husbands face the first day we used the sling and he didn't have to carry Miss Courtney
* for the absolute miracle that the lift actually fits into our very small 1968 home
* to be able to "lift" Courtney all by myself allowing me more freedom in caring for her daily
* for the smell of roses that surrounds her on occasion
* for knowing where the smell comes form...May Our Lady be with us always
* praise for Mr. caleb and his brave parents as they enter a new phase of life today. May I beg your prayers for them. It's a tough day but a very good day
* for the staff at Miss Courtney's school. They love and love and love
* for being able to finally think about the future without my throat closing off as I am consumed with grief and everything that could go wrong
* to be able to serve the homeless in some small way
* to know I am loved beyond reason by My Beloved who gave His life for me, a sinner

Head on over to Ann Voskamp @A Holy Experience to be inspired once more


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