We've been taking each day these last couple weeks one day at a time. Peanut was in the vets at the beginning of these last two weeks and for a couple days there, we couldn't figure out what was wrong with him. He was lethargic, having trouble with his bladder, and had a bloody nose. He looked pathetic and H1 and I discussed having to put him down. The vet though had hope, since Peanut's bloodwork and urine analysis came back normal. After 4 days, he started to improve and now he is back to his sweet, annoying self. This spring he will be 10, as best as we can figure. We rescued him from the Humane Society a couple months before we got married, so Peanut has been in our family since day 1. Granted, he can drive me absoutely crazy, but I'm used to him and there are times I really enjoy his company. H3 loves him and tries to play with him frequently, bringing her toys over to him and arranging them around him. It's really cute.
I finally started on antibiotics for my sinus infection, so I'm feeling much better and have been getting back into our normal rhythym. Friday night I spent at the rescue squad. H1 stayed with H3 and took care of her until I got back at 8:00 Saturday morning. Since it was a long night with little sleep, H1 gave me the luxury of a nap! I awoke to the house smelling amazing. H1 had cooked up some chili, enough to freeze for several days, and a few other meals to freeze for during the week for us and for H3. Talk about a treat! I love having meals ready to go in the freezer, but hadn't done so in a while since we'd been so busy. Sunday, after attending our church, we drove to another town and joined a friend's church for their evening service. H1 and I enjoyed some good adult time, and H3 had a blast with the kids.
During basketball season, H1 and I wash the jerseys for the team. These kids are in 6-8th grade and most don't know how to do their own laundry, or don't have access to laundry facilities at their homes. The first year H1 coached the middle school team, kids were coming to games with dirty or sometimes wet jerseys that had been washed and not dried. We felt sorry for the kids, so he started bringing the jerseys home to be taken care of here. H3 thinks the colors are pretty cool and asked to wear one this week, so here she is!
H1's brother and sister-in-law gave H3 a set of alphabet stacking blocks for Christmas. I've been arranging them on the table and having H3 identify them. She already knows her alphabet, but it's a good refresher. She really enjoyed stacking them too!
Play-doh is also fabulous for learning! In the late afternoons, I take it out while dinner is cooking. H1 usually joins in on the fun when he gets home. We cut out shapes in the play-doh and H3 identifies them. Last week she learned what a hexagon is. Her pronunciation is a little rough, but you can definitely tell what she's saying and she points it out correctly. Here she is enjoying some time with Daddy and her play-doh shapes.
One of the highlights of my week was Saturday night. Every night before dinner, H1 and I hold hands and pray before we eat. We try to hold hands with H3 too, but it's hit-and-miss since she usually doesn't like to hold hands. That night we prayed as usual and then began eating. About halfway through the meal, H3 put down her fork and grabbed H1's thumb, then reached for me. I thought she wanted a toy so I pushed one toward her, but she shoved it aside and grabbed my hand. Then, she bowed her head and started mumbling, ending with an "Amen" and looking up and grinning! It was so adorable. I know she isn't quite aware of what prayer means yet, but it shows that she's watching us closely. It was just a clear reminder that she observes everything I do, how I react to situations, and one day her views of God will be shaped by what she sees in me and in H1. Our little girl is growing up and daily I pray that she will make that choice to walk with Christ.
Life can be hard. I know H3 will see that and there is nothing I can do to shield her from some of it. What I can do is show her what I have learned and trust that God will take care us. Since we've been living here, we have found an amazing church that is incredibly supportive and they have been a family for us here. Other than our church, this has been a hard move for me. God has provided exactly what we need, nothing more, but still I am thankful. I still don't know why we are here though, so here are some of the thoughts I have been working through.
God may have you in that place to shine the light for one person. God took Philip to meet with an Ethiopian eunuch and explain the Gospel to him (Acts 8:26). God's only purpose for Philip traveling in that direction was to talk to that one man. He is interested in our salvation. He may bring you someplace to reach just one person, and then lead you somewhere else. He may have you stay, even if you have no clue why you are still there. When He says move, you move, but until then, you may have to reach daily for His peace and entrust everything to His care, including the impact on your kids (or kid, singular, in my case). Since I do not believe in coincidence or in chance, my only choice is to believe that my God has me in a specific place, at a specific time, for a specific purpose, and nothing will move until He is through with me here. My steps are ordered. He already knows my future. My tomorrows are His yesterdays and nothing is a surprise. There are days I struggle with doubt and pain, and He already knows that. He already knows the very moments in my future when I will question what He is doing and question what I believe about Him. Sometimes I've learned that my views are wrong and I have to reshape them. Other times my beliefs are reinforced stronger because of my questioning. Always I strive to remember that as much as I love my daughter and am concerned about her well-being and growing up, He is even more so.
So here we are in January, still taking each day at a time and finding joy in the little things!