joy, hope, gratitude and coffee...lots of coffee...

In my cup::
coffee...two raw sugar with a dollop of cream. A splendid way to begin the day. 

Sitting in::
On the sofa in the living room. There is an explosion of Barbies and Legos on the floor as my two little four-year old friends have arrived for their twice-weekly visit. 

Listening to the sounds of::
"Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure" being dubbed by two little four year old beauties who have seen it a time or three. It's Monday and after a very emotional weekend for me, a slow start is necessary. The Barbie Doll Fairies are being flown around the living room, mimicking the movie. They are having fun and that's all that matters to me. 

The sun is::
Shining for now. I just looked up the weather forecast for the week and I do believe that beginning this afternoon the rain is coming and will be with us for several days. Le sigh. We have our first family portraits since Courtney's death scheduled for tomorrow. It's an out side shoot, so I am thinking we may have to choose another date. We shall see. 

Courtney is currently::
You guys gave me some great ideas for this space now that my girl rests in heaven. I haven't decided yet what I am going to do. I am sort of waiting for the Holy Spirit to inspire me with this one. For now I think I will share a photo of Courtney each week. Today's selection if from 1997 when we were living in Virginia Beach. Court and her big brother were getting there groove on. She was four and Jonathan was seven. 

I like still seeing her here in this space. My heart smiles looking at this photo. Jonathan loved to help Courtney stand. They both loved to dance and Garth Brooks was a favorite at the time. Then there is Papa always standing close to make sure everyone is OK. 

Something beautiful::
Since the past few days have been very hard emotionally for me, I woke up this morning determined to find that joy that has escaped me lately. I know that my grief is deep and it will remain with me for some time to come, but life is meant for the living as my Daddy used to say. 

I am determined once again to seek beauty in my day and find joy, even in the midst of having a broken heart now that my Courtney is no long here. It will be a challenge, but a worthy one. Inside or out, I will find something to smile about. 

Something Stylish:
I put up my first What I Wore post yesterday. It had been almost six weeks since my last one. Today I am in denim shorts and a red and white striped t-shirt. It is a go to in this hot muggy weather. Of course, there are flip-flops on my feet. Again comfort and function during the week.

I hope to be a bit better about taking photos daily so I can fill at least one post a week for y'all. 
What's on my mind::
This past weekend was challenging for me. Very challenging. My emotions were on a serious roller coaster. I was missing my girl something awful and that ache has not completely left me yet. 

I have been struggling with the fairness of it all. It's not something I contemplate often since it doesn't really help me, it just makes me mad and pissed off at God. We all know where that leads. To a big pile of yuck that just gets stinkier the longer you hang on to it. 

The movie Frozen plays in my head quite often. I know, very sad. However the song Let it Go has just settled into my brain and when I am feeling very overwhelmed, I start humming it. 

Hey, we all have our coping skilz dude. Mine usually include a Disney movie song of some kind and the Rosary. Yes, I am weird and I am A-OK with that.  

What I am praying for:
for my sweet friend who is undergoing some serious persecution and alienation due to her beiliefs. I pray God stands with her and she feels His strength. 

+ for my sister who is a teacher. That she knows her kids (students) would not be who they are without her tutalege. She is a treasure of an instructor. 

+ for friends who are trying to have another baby. If it be the Lord's will, that He bless them abundantly. 

+ for everyone who has a lost a child. That God comforts them and brings a smile to their face at some point this week. 

for my son and my husband who are both in the midst of transitions and change. They are not big fans of either. Really NOT big fans. 

+ for all the Mama's of special ones I know and love so much. For strength, wisdom, perseverance and understanding in the vocations of motherhood. You are never alone. 

+ for the church. It is filled with brokenness and broken people. For God's mercy and guidance.

Adventuring in the kitchen::
I made a new cupcake recipe last week It was delish. I will have that on the blog tomorrow. there will also be lots of salad. LOTS of salad. 

Sewing with my Bernina:: 
I finally got a few baby gifts cut out and hopefully will have them sewn and in the mail later this week. I promise pictures as we go along. 

This week will bring::
Rain apparently. If there is a break in the rain, then we will have our new family photos taken. I will be writing another round of thank you notes from the funeral. There will be a little visiting as well. 

:: giving thanks for
#2250 ~ #2074
* a package of love arriving in the mail that makes me smile through my tears. So grateful for my village. 
* Playdoh on a Monday morning
* Farmer's Market on a Thursday afternoon
* fresh veggies that brighten any supper, even the most simple of fares. 
* Finishing another successful year of Youth Ministry. 
* grocery shopping with my husband and coming home without bacon. He considers it a tragedy. I consider it a life saving measure. 
* Netflix streaming - let's binge watch shall we
* Spending the evening on the front porch next to my beloved, watching the fireflies
* cupcakes...lemon cupcakes

* fresh muzz with basil, tomatoes and balsamic drizzle
* hamburgers on the grill
* fresh cut flowers as a centerpiece to a week night dinner
* ice creams cones for Jimmy Cone
* ice cream in any form
* Lucille the stuffed Seal. Her life is dramatic. Just asked Miss E (who is four)
* learning a new recipe and being successful in it's execution
* green smoothies first thing in the morning
* grateful for my three nieces who all graduated from high school this past weekend. Where did the time go? Weren't they just in diapers learning how to walk? 
* spending time with family even when grieving. They are such a blessing. 
* comfy pillows, a warm blanket, the couch and a good book
* completely de-cluttering and re-organizing one more room in the house. Only five more to go. 
* fresh fruit in my oatmeal
* a tuna melt on a Friday for lunch
* for Matthias Vale and Brian Francis. Too little men who are destined to change the world. 
* praying for ALL of you. It is a gift to me. 

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