Thursday, June 30, 2011

With a joyful heart

This is my sweet slice of heaven, right here on earth.

Ok, I don't have any concept of how amazing heaven will really be — it will probably blow this scene right out of the water. But this picture depicts so much of what is good and beautiful in my life. As I sit on my deck on this gorgeous, calm (except for the barking dog next door) morning, I am overlooking the following wonderful objects:

  • Owen's swimming suit, drying on the chair across from me. He and I have had a lot of fun between our neighborhood pool and the tiny, plastic baby pool in our own backyard this summer. I wish I would have taken a picture of the scene as we left it yesterday afternoon — purple plastic baby pool, overflowing with water; garden hose laying in the grass nearby; plastic slide with its end in the water; red wagon, dripping from the hose-down it received by its young owner; lawn chair with various gardening materials (i.e., potting soil, gloves, plants, etc.) — indicating a perfect afternoon. That is, Owen happily splashing, sliding, and wielding the hose, and me potting a few plants and getting a little afternoon sun.
  • The baby monitor, silent — indicating a sleeping babe and a moment of peace and quiet for this momma.
  • One of several freshly potted plants — a result of yesterday's aforementioned perfect afternoon. This one, although not a flower like the others, is such a fun variety of plant. It's called "corkscrew rush" and I love its crazy grass spirals. (You can also see one pictured here in my "good-bye" gift to a friend.)
  • A cup of coffee, which is one indulgent pleasure that I am fortunate to enjoy at least once a day. And on especially relaxing days, I will have a second cup, often mid-afternoon, which always feels particularly gratifying and sweet!
  • My laptop, with my new favorite shot of the boy as the screen background. (Isn't he adorable???) And, although you can't probably read it, the post-it below the keyboard says, "...The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. — Galatians 5:6" This is my new favorite scripture verse, of which I could write an entire post on its own, but I won't. Just ponder that one for now. It's fantastic!
  • Finally, my Bible, which doesn't always get the first-thing-in-the-morning billing that it received today, but does get read just about every day now, which is something relatively new and wonderful in my life, per the past year. 

Currently, that Bible is open to a devotional that actually inspired me to write this post. The title is "Lighten Up," and it's about being spontaneous and flexible, and putting some fun into our days, and those of our children. One line, in particular, caught my attention. It says, "These days are filled with opportunities to make memories."

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about the memories that Owen will have of his mommy and his childhood. You might argue that at (almost!) two years old, he's still too young to form any lasting, lifelong memories. Regardless, I want to make sure that he has mostly good ones to pull from as he makes his way through life. It's something I try to remind myself of when I start feeling extra cranky and less-than excited about his messes and wild screaming. Those messes and jubilant (usually!) screams are measures of his joy! I need to let him have his fun! This is his childhood — the only one he will ever have — and he deserves a remarkable one! One that involves me, not as a nagging, grouchy, yelling caretaker, but as a loving, merry, lighthearted playmate!

Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for it is now that God favors what you do.
- Ecclesiastes 9:7

Well, that baby monitor is silent no more, so I'm off to get that amazing child out of bed and then we're headed to the pool again. Cheers, to summer! And cheers to JOY!


  1. Amen to all of this. I sure do miss you guys. Give Owen an extra squeeze, for me, this morning!

  2. Such a great post and such an amazing attitude! You are a wonderful mother to Owen. He is so loved. Enjoy every minute with your sweet baby boy. He will grow up so quickly. Keep believing. I love you.