Today has been…satisfying. Productive, yet relaxed and enjoyable. A lot of cleaning was done, but there was time for snuggles and coffee and cookies, along with family visiting and working in the yard before the sun went down. See, recently I’ve been battling a spirit of discontentment and covetousness, and the past few days I’ve been grumbling in my heart about all the things I can’t have RIGHT NOW.

My main weakness as been with wanting to fix up the house and make it prettier. Not a bad thing in itself, but I watch HGTV makeovers and long for all the furnishings other people get, and I start to spend hours looking online at everything I want to buy – patio furniture, rugs, hammock, flowers, door mats, etc, – and I continually grow more and more dissatisfied with all the things I already have. I was really convicted of my attitude this morning when I read Hebrews 13:5a – “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have…”.

So today I really tried to focus on contentment and thankfulness.

My morning started out the usual way – I woke up around 7am when I heard Oliver over the monitor, awake in his room, waiting with a huge smile and giggle for me as soon as he saw my face peek over the edge of his crib. After nursing we played and hugged and I smothered him with kisses. I decided it was finally time for him to start sitting in his bumbo chair so I gave him what has become his favorite animal to hold (a stuffed monkey that came with his activity mat) in hopes of making the experience more fun, because really…why would sitting in a chair doing nothing be that interesting?

Oliver and Mr. Monkey. This kid is going to grow up thinking monkeys are blue and magenta and elephants are purple with crinkley ears.


“What is this?”

“Feet that I must rub into my eyeballs!”
(the vacant upside-down monkey stare simultaneously creeps me out and makes me laugh)

We had toyed with the idea of going over to my mom’s house today, but I just couldn’t bring myself to pack up the 5,000 things I bring every time we visit. Gone are the days of just grabbing my purse and computer bag. Now I have to pack up those things along with his portable mini-crib, clothing for me (in case Oliver has of any sort of *eruption*), his bouncer and activity mat, a huge diaper bag with changes of clothes, diapers, wipes, nursing pads, plus any food I might need to eat since I still can’t have dairy, gluten, or nuts.

So I got on google video chat with my mom and bobbed Oliver’s adorable face in front of the screen and convinced her to come to my house and visit US instead. It really didn’t take much convincing though:)

Oliver gets so serious whenever I pull out my camera, so mom distracted him and got him laughing so I can finally have a recent picture of him smiling!

Then this evening, once Matthew was home from working, we all went into the backyard together. Matthew worked on his garden (planted watermelon today!), I started to rake up about 10 years worth of leaves from part of the yard (it’s too much to finish for just an hour of work), and Oliver played in his bouncer, tugging on the animals hanging above him with an occasional and only slightly interested glance at what we were doing. It felt good to start working towards our goal of a nicer looking house and yard by just getting up off my hiney and doing a little work – and it didn’t cost a penny!

When I start to think about how I found an amazing husband after waiting 22 years, and how I have a beautiful healthy boy after miscarrying my first pregnancy, and how I live in an amazing part of town in a spacious house we can afford after scraping by to live in a tiny old crumbling apartment for two years, and adding up all the little things I usually take for granted, I tear up and it’s hard not to break down crying over all the blessings. After focusing on positive things in life, it’s amazing how selfish and ashamed I feel over how much I let myself wallow in self-pity over material things I may want but don’t have.

So today, I want to say that I am especially thankful for:

– an amazing little boy that I get to hold and watch learn and grow and experinece new things every day
– visits from a mom that is fun and creative and will sit and eat cookies with me
– capturing laughs with my camera that I never want to forget
– the ability and energy to work outside with my little family on beautiful evenings like today
– and I’m really REALLY thankful that Oliver can make Matthew’s adorable puppy dog pout:

Is there something you’re thankful for today?