in the quiet there is contentment...most days...

It has been quite a long time since I have done one of these posts. I decided this weekend that I needed to spend less time watching TV and more time reading and writing. It was a good choice and I am hoping that this refocusing will bring a little more life to this space as well. We shall see where the path leads in the coming weeks. HGTV is lick crack so some days it's easier to ignore than others.

Today though there is quiet in our home. Miss Courtney continues with her new care plan undergoing some major seizure med changes which means we stay home and hunker down. The last thing we need is a series of grand-mal seizures in the midst of the grocery store. Not fun and it tends to freak people out. So I am learning to embrace the quiet and be content with where God is leading us.

:: noticing God's glory
It's grey and damp outside today. It feels like early Spring and it's only January. I am hoping winter will show up soon. A little snow would be lovely.

:: listening to
This morning there was a Sarah 101 marathon on HGTV. She is one of my favorite designers and I absolutely love her style. So after a weekend of watching only football games, i am happily listening and occasionally watching them decorate an entire house room by room. Absolutely lovely.  I know, I know I said less TV and I have done that. But Sarah and her awesome ideas are just too much temptation.

:: clothing myself in
A comfy graphic tee, a light sweater in ice blue and my very first pair of "skinny" jeans in a lovely robins egg blue. I am just giddy that I actually got to type the word "skinny". For this longtime fluffy girl I am enjoying the new choices that being a smaller size affords me. I still have a long way to go but I am having fun on the journey. I have to give a shout out to my little sister who wears the same size shoes as I do. She recently cleaned out her closet and I happily received a few hand-me-ups. these very comfy ballet flats are perfect for my daily life. So happy...thanks Marianne. Love you!

:: thinking and thinking
Good grief you do not want to know what goes through my head on a daily basis. It goes a little like this:
...dinner, what's for dinner? hmmm...soup, chicken, or meatloaf/...dessert? yes. no. yes. no. Hello got  new pair of jeans dessert...I need to sit and pray, read some scripture...that would help ground my day...I think meatloaf is perfect for a Monday night dinner...(sniffing) Courtney needs a diaper change...I need to get those last Christmas presents done and mailed...good grief I am a horrible Auntie...Mashed potatoes go with jeans remember?...I need coffee...maybe tea and a gingerbread muffin...shoots I need to make sure I say the rosary with Courtney many prayer requests...I wish it would snow...I love snow...ooohhh hot chocolate would be lovely...remember those new hot chocolate...

Yes, I probably need what am I thinking about? Danger WIll Robinson Danger! You don't really want to know. Trust me.

:: giving thanks for
#1138 ~ #1164
**my sweet girls curls accented by a little hair bling
**time to write and ponder where the Lord is leading me
**the gift of a home filled with love
**encouragement from dear friends and strangers alike
**a new shower head that doesn't leak
**a long hot shower with a shower head that doesn't leak
**proper water pressure from a new shower head that doesn't leak
**being able to install a new shower head without calling a plumber
**for being able to follow and understand directions to install said shower head
**yes, hot showers with proper water pressure have rather miraculous restorative properties
**a cup of steaming french press coffee, a little sugar and wonderful dollop of half and half
**a fresh gingerbread muffin
**a son who reads to his little sister
**knitting needles and a stash of yarn
**new reading glasses so now I can read again
**a fan.tas.tic group if caregivers who love my girl almost as much as I do. We are so blessed.
**watching my BFF's older son grow in maturity and make decisions that make my heart dance. So proud to know this young man and so honored to pray for him daily.
**so proud and blessed to watch my own son move as the Lord is directing him to. I could get used to this type of mentoring/parenting.
**honored to pray over my fellow parishioners during Eucharistic Adoration last wek. Oh how the Spirit is moving in our church community. 
**being challenged by my Heavenly father to step outside my comfort zone and speak up to be heard
**sweet friends from Court's old school that love me and treat me with such love and care
**quiet time with my husband to pray and dream and listen to the yearnings of each others hearts
**encouraging notes left on my bedside table from my beloved 
**cookies and brownies eaten with writing friends as we dissect Jane
**nurses and docs who SEE my daughter for the incredible unique beauty she is
**a new med plan that I would not have come up with in a million years...God inspired indeed
**so blessed to be surrounded by so many prayers by so many who love and care for Courtney. Praise God from Whom ALL blessings flow

::pondering prayerfully
So many needs out in the much to pray for...

+ for a family friend who is having issues with their eye sight. for their healing and peace of mind with whatever the doctors find. 
+ for Jerry and I as we make some hard decisions regarding Courtney's care plan. There is so much to consider and in the end none of it is under our power. We are working on humility and trusting in God's plan for our girl. 
+ for Jonathan and the plans he is praying over regarding his future. So proud of my son and where God has brought him. Courage is hard to come by these days and he has it in spades. 
+ for my Mom and other family members who are at a cross-roads in their professional lives. That God speaks to their hearts and they listen to his guiding voice. 
 for Courtney to remain strong as her body adjusts to the new med plan. This is so hard on her body.

+ for all those facing a devastating diagnosis this week. May the Lord be their tower of strength.
+ for a successful March for Life next week. For protection of the marchers and that our government will listen and protect the rights of the unborn.
+ for our VA state legislators who are meeting this week and listening to testimony that could make federal monies available for abortions of disabled children. May God guide the vote and protect the most vulnerable among us.
+ for our church community to know the Lord and love Him with their WHOLE life.
+ for the youth my husband and I minister to each Sunday. That they know they are loved by the One who made them.
+ for those fighting addictions and depression to know they are NEVER alone.
+ for our priest's and deacons to live as God has directed them to, to love as Jesus taught them to and  to minister as the Holy Spirit guides them to. 

:: creating by hand
Since I am so far behind with the final holiday gifts, I have decided that I am just going to keep stitching and sewing things in the next few months that are for next years holiday sewing. Then maybe I will actually catch up. We shall see. Right now I have hand-stitched ornaments in the hoop and the last four gifts at the sewing machine. Almost there.

:: in the kitchen
This week it's all about SOUP! I hope you'll stop in throughout the week and join in on the fun. Just check out this yummy recipe for Mushroom Barley Soup. Quick, easy and so very, very good!

:: living the liturgy
As the Christmas Season has now come to and end, there will be a few weeks of Ordinary Time before we enter the holiest Season of the Church year...Lent and Eastertide. I have found some lovely purple fabric to cover the Crucifix's in the house that I need to hem in the coming weeks and then Jerry and I have to prayerfully contemplate our family's plan for the season. As I get older I find that the change in seasons come faster and faster each year. I am determined to be ready. We shall see if I am successful.

:: keeping house
This would be a complete and total fail. I am staring at three loads of laundry that I need to fold tonight and there is more in the laundry room that needs to be addressed. The bathrooms need a deep cleaning as does the kitchen. there are little piles that have turned up on every single flat surface in the house. It needs to be NOW! So I have much to do in the coming week all while dealing with doctor's appointments and therapy. Yea me!

:: planning the week ahead
So many medical details to deal with but patience wins the day. Right now I am grateful to have made a menu plan and have most of the ingredients on hand ready to go for quick efficient meals that are tasty. Other than that, I am just waiting and watching what Miss Courtney will do in response to the med changes. She rules the roost so we wait and pray for a positive outcome.

:: loving the moments
When my husband wraps his arms around our girl and holds her close. Miss Courtney smiles and Daddy is at peace for a moment. Oh how he loves his girl and watching her suffer in any way is harder on him than anyone else in the house. He is our "fixer" and there is nothing her he can "fix". So we hold her, sing to her, read to her, love her as best we can. We store up all the love memories because we know a time will come when we won't be able to do these things. For today we live and take in every smile she's willing to share.

:: Miss Courtney's World
First, thank you to all of you who hold our girl close to you. I really cannot express to you fully how touched our family has been by the notes, emails, messages and texts that we have received in the last week supporting us, encouraging us and offering prayers for our daughter. It has been a challenging week but we are not a family who does not give into least not ALL the time. Oh I have my moments of standing in the shower and weeping, believe me I do. But we are a team and when we are down at the half, we shore up the defense and play on baby. One day at a time. SO this week we have one very important doctor's appointment on Wednesday morning, more blood work and our regular PT appointment on Friday. In between we track her seizures, continue to increase the volume and calorie count of her tube feeds and love her as best we can. This will be a long and winding road. Thank you for traveling it with us.

Please join Ann Voskamp @ A Holy Experience to celebrate the little gifts given each day by the ONE who loves us most!

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