Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A Gray Jay

I've written a gratitude list since 2011.
Every single day, 365 days a year, I write down 3 things that I am grateful for.
I learned it from Ann Voskamp through her book titled 1000 Gifts.
So this morning when I went to write down something that my oldest grand boy had said I couldn't remember what it was. Total blank.
While giving myself time to remember what it was exactly that I wanted to remember I got out my devotional books to do my daily readings.

The first book was Daily Guideposts 2016.
Yeah yeah, I know. Only gray haired Lutheran women subscribe to that publication.
But I like reading it. And besides I do have a few gray hairs and I am a Lutheran. :)

The writer for this days reading was Carol Knapp.
She described an encounter with a Chickadee on Easter morning. She goes on to say that this Chickadee was doing it's usual thing by singing "He-who" when all of a sudden he lands on her foot and hops it's way up her leg, to her torso and then finally coming to rest on her head.
And then she connects it to a Bible passage-

25 ..... I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”   John 11:25-26New American Standard Bible (NASB)

She caught the reference of "He who believes in Me" and matched it up to what that little bird  was singing ....He-who....He-who.

I don't believe that I will ever be able to listen to the sound of that bird again without thinking of her Bible passage reference. She floored me with that! I was awed and stunned. Wow.
For further study she suggests reading the following passage-

21 Now when all the people were baptized, Jesus was also baptized, and while He was praying, heaven was opened, 22 and the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, “You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased.”Luke 3:21-2(NASB)

And Whamo! There it is! That's what I wanted to remember for my gratitude list. The dove.
My grandson saw a dove in our backyard for the first time yesterday. 
He didn't know what kind of bird it was so he asked me- "Granny? Is that a Gray Jay?"
Isn't that one of the cutest things you've ever heard?
No? Oh well. I thought it was just precious. Perfect and cute enough to make my gratitude list.
A Gray Jay. It still  makes me giggle.

But what I loved most of all was how God had a hand in helping me to remember what it was that I was trying to remember....a gray dove. 
I love it when God shows up like that in my life.
Most days God shows up at about 5:15 when the kids have gone home and I've had a glass of wine.
That's not me being sacrilegious either. That's the honest to god truth.
Once the grandkids are gone, I can sit back and reflect on my day.
I think back on where I saw God in my day and where I think I didn't see Him.
I think back on my attitude and my words I've used and how the day might have been a bit better had Granny not yelled quite so much.
It's when I ask for His forgiveness then accept His grace because I know I'll be given another chance to make it right again tomorrow. And the day after that. And the day after that.
The grandkids leave and have no idea that I rehash in my mind my day with them. 
No idea that I feel bad for yelling or that a 6 year old boys decription of a bird has rendered me speechless or that I ask God for his forgiveness for being snippy.
That's between me and God and a Gray Jay in the backyard.

Thanks for reading.
Love, Lolly

Monday, March 28, 2016

My madcap March re-cap

Remember me? It's been a busy month to say the least.
Not really fun busy, more like I CANT TAKE ONE MORE PIECE OF BAD NEWS busy.

My daughter has been prescribed Progesterone to help her keep this pregnancy. 
It's not like she is having a miscarriage; she just needs a boost of progesterone to prevent one. She feels crampy and nauseated and exhausted.

My other daughter has a complex cyst on one ovary and a simple cyst on the other.
She has extensive endometriosis and adenomyosis in her pelvic cavity and also she has an elevated CA125 blood test result.
If you are unaware what a CA125 blood test is for it is an ovarian cancer marker.
She is scheduled for a D&C and an oopherectomy (ovary removal) on Wednesday.
I.Will. Not. Freak. Out. I. Will. NOT. Worry. I. Will. Give. It. To. God. Amen.

My 6 year old grandson is recovering from a bout of Pneumonia. Pneumonia!!!
He's been sick for two weeks now along with his 3 yr old sister who developed an ear infection.
She lays like a limp rag on my couch with a high fever off and on for 8 days.
The fevers, snotty noses, and coughing, coughing, coughing, coughing of these two.'s making me a little bit crazed.

We've lost an hour of sleep due to Daylight Savings Time. 
I may never recover. 
I am so tired.

On Good Friday me and the grandkids were driving home from my pregnant daughters house.
Half way home my grandson says "Granny, I have a bad headache."
"Ok, Bud" I tell him. "Let's stop by Momma's work on the way home."
2 minutes later he's complaining of  his headache becoming real bad.
2 minutes after that he yells out " Granny it hurts so bad right now, I can hardly stand it!"
"Ok baby", I tell him. "I can see Momma's office right down the road. We're almost there!"
He starts writhing and twisting and thrashing in his car seat..."Ooooh Granny" he wails.
"Hang on Sweetie, we're almost there ok?" And he mumbles something incoherent.
"Granny can't hear you Sweetie...What did you say?"  Incoherent groaning follows.
And then he starts puking. And puking. And puking. In my car. In his carseat. On himself.
It hits the door and the floor and it covers his coat, his blankie and his stuffed lovie.
I cannot believe he has thrown up so much. I haven't been able to get either one of them to eat more than a few crackers over the last week and a half!

I am frantic at this point. My car is quickly becoming a noxious environment. 
Both kids are crying. 
I'm scared out of my ever loving mind because this grand boy of mine has just exhibited what I believe are brain tumor symptoms. Or a brain bleed of some sort. Maybe a stroke??
I call his Momma on my cell from the parking lot and yell at her to come out and help me!
We clean him up, change his clothes, and pack every soiled thing into a large garbage bag and put him in the front seat of my car where he calmly says to both of us-
"Can we go to McDonald's, Pleeeaaase?"


"My headache is all gone. I want a Happy meal. Please Granny?"
I am stunned to say the least. Dumbstruck. What has just happened here?
What in the name of all that is holy has just happened here???

His mother and I exchange glances, shrug our shoulders and figure it can't hurt.

He is fine. Perfectly fine after all of this.
He is still coughing but has no headache. He eats every bit of that god-awful Happy Meal. The chicken, the fries, the apples.
He goes home with his Momma at the usual time and eats Pizza for dinner.
He plays with his sister and goes to bed and then wakes up the next morning feeling fine.

Meanwhile I can't get the memory of what happened out of my head. 
My husband and I scrub the carseat and the backseat and the carpet on the floor.
I call my daughter and ask her repeatedly to check on him.
"Mom!!" she says, "He is fine. Playing and acting fine."
Well all right then. Guess I need to say Thank You Jesus and move on.

This last week of March is Spring Break for my grandson. We have no plans, Thank God!
I think we all just need to recoup from sickness and worry and stress.

Already today I have yelled and threatened and hollered for them to pick up their toys and stop fighting and eat lunch and stop hitting each other!!

Today I'm grateful for the beautiful noise of these two. 
The messy, smelly, fighting, crying noise of grandchildren.

(Remind me I said this when this week is over. Is it really only Monday!?)
Gotta go! Grandkids are healthy again. And feeling just fine.
I'm grateful. So very grateful.

Friday, March 4, 2016

A Friday in March

My granddaughter took a  nap at noon today.
I got so excited I almost wet my pants. Oh, wait. No. That's just menopause.
Seriously, I wish I had something to write about.
I've got all this free time and not a damn thing to say.

I will say this-
This little 3 year old grandchild of mine is a ball of fire. Man alive is she a pistol!
From crossing the street to making herself lunch to setting up her play kitchen to putting on her snow boots to brushing her teeth to turning off the TV to closing the door to wanting to put on her own seat belt...I am exhausted from fighting with her ABOUT EVERYTHING!!!
I DO IT she screams at me.

She. Is. 3.
And not even really 3 yet! Her birthday is on Monday the 7th.

So her taking a nap in the middle of the day is a lovely little gift and I Thank You Jesus for that!

Winter is winding down here in Illinois. Keep your fingers crossed.
We usually get one more big storm before we're really out of the woods!

I am ready for Spring. I think.
I'm done with the snow and the blowing cold wind.
I'm ready for more agreeable temperatures.
I  miss playing outside and riding bikes with the kids and walking around the block.
We all walk to and from school every morning and then again in the afternoon but it's not the same as a meandering walk around the neighborhood, ya know?

My Winter gardens are ugly and I want to see color and flowers and green grass and leaves. And daily sunshine.
Don't get me wrong...I am grateful for the slow down of the winter season.
Staying inside and being cozy and eating hardy foods...I get it. I'm blessed.
I just want warmer weather. A little bit warmer. Not too warm.
Y'all know I'm going to bitch about that Summer heat though, right?

Good Lord but you'd think I'd stop complaining so much if I'm going to keep telling you all how blessed I truly am.

Spring time is when I really notice the presence of God. All things new and all that.
It's so true, though, isn't it?
The way the sunshine makes a body feel.
The new growth on the trees; the unfolding of the leaves and buds.
Plants just starting to push up threw the ground, the feel of the Earth and the smell of rain.
It's heady stuff to me.
It makes me want to reach for more; more color, more air, more life.
And speaking of more life we are going to be grandparents again come October.
More life indeed!

The granddaughter is stirring...time for me to go.
Here's a Spring poem from my favorite poet Ted Loder titled-
Be with me in my unfolding

It is spring, Lord.
And the land is coming up green again,
Outside my well-drawn boundaries
And urgent schedules.
And there is the mystery
And the smile of it.
The willows are dripping honey color into the rivers,
And the mother birds are busy in manger nests,
And I am learning again
That "for everything there is a season
And a time for every matter under heaven."
O Lord, you have sketched the lines of spring.
Be with me in my unfolding.
It is spring, Lord,
And my blood runs warm with the song of the sap,
For a beauty I would become.
And there is the mystery
And the smile of it.
The buds are swelling on the bush,
The sun is beginning to coax the color
From where it's been curled against the cold,
The air is sweet to the nostrils;
Even the city seems to be rubbing its eyes
From a long sleep;
And there is a promise in the season
I know no name for
Except life.
O Lord, you have sketched the lines of spring.
Be with me in my longing.
It is spring, Lord,
And something stirs in me,
Reaching, stretching
Groping for words,
Peeking through my defenses,
Beckoning in my laughter,
Riding on past my fears,
Pulsing in my music.
And there is the mystery
And the smile of it.
Be with me in my reaching
So I will touch or be touched,
This time,
By a grace, a warmth, a light,
To unfold my life to a new beginning,
A fresh budding,
A spring within as well as around me.
O Lord, you have sketched the lines of spring.
Be with me in my reaching.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

A quick note

I got a hair cut today.
It snowed so hard I was kinda scared to drive to the salon and then have to drive back home.
It stopped snowing an hour after I got home.

I miss reading Birdie's posts...where're you at Birdie?

I read Linda's posts and it makes my heart clench, the memories of being down that road that she's on still fresh in my mind. It makes me want to hug her.

I read Annette's posts with tears in my eyes...and find myself worrying about her girl and praying so hard it makes my teeth hurt from clenching them while I beg God to intervene.

I read Julie's latest posts about her beloved Micheal and bawled my eyes out every day for a week.

I'm more than ready for Spring to get here!! I am finding this snow and cold rather tiresome.

I feel like I have writers block and can't find any thing worth writing about.

My three year old granddaughter's favorite word here lately has been Dammit.
My six year old grandson sang in a play at school and was amazingly cute and perfect.
My two year old grandson got bit twice at daycare and it made me feel so sad for him.

We are going to be grandparents again in October...Yay!

That's it for now. Thanks for reading! Love Lolly