Thank you one and all for your sweet comments on our fairy gardens (see below). The gardens are still going strong, and still (gasp!) in one piece -- no one has tried to take the little pieces and play with them... which in our family is saying quite a lot.
I haven't been ignoring y'all... I've been dealing with a sweet, but EXTREMELY high maintenance baby who refuses to nap... or be happy... unless she is in my arms. From 7:00 AM until 10:00 PM.
I'm not kidding.
My back is killing me, and right now she is in her crib, howling.
I know this time will pass, and I will look back on these days soon enough and say, "I can't believe it was ever that difficult." She is so much like her older sister Kathryn it is scary... and Kathryn (while an amazingly difficult baby) is a sweet, sensitive, always-willing-to-help wonder daughter. If Grace turns out to be like her, we will be thrilled!
Still, it's been a week of extra blessings (other than the extremely obvious and majorly important ones like life, family, health, food, clothing, and shelter!). The women in my Bible study, sensing a need to lift my spirits, came over for a "morning in [Ouiz's] kitchen," which did wonders for my emotional chi.
Then I've had another dear friend, who knows I'm sinking fast, come over and see what miracles she could perform on my backyard. Turns out it's rather cost prohibitive (which I knew it would be), but I still love her for trying.
Another friend came over to bless me with one of these, which I absolutely love! (well, it's not EXACTLY this one, but it's close...)
So, in the midst of yucky emotional lows, I've been blessed abundantly.
In other news, I'm also currently reading several books that I'm enjoying greatly:
Come Be My Light (the writings of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta). Be prepared to be completely blown away by holiness like you've never seen before. I am so in awe I can barely put it into words. It's not a book that can be read in huge chunks in one sitting, so this one will take me awhile to digest. Here we see, in her own words, her absolute desire to live completely for Jesus, her passionate quest for radical obedience at all costs, and her excruciating pain at feeling His "absence." I don't think anyone could read this without being humbled and silenced at the witness of such an amazing, holy woman.
A Year of Living Biblically (A.J. Jacobs). The subtitle says it all: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible. Having read his previous book The Know-It-All, I knew this would be a fun read... and so far, it is. The author, an agnostic, set out to do just what the subtitle said -- from growing his beard long, not wearing clothing of mixed fibers, blowing his shofar at the start of each month, to posting the 10 Commandments around his home as reminders to follow them as best as possible. While he does not claim to have any faith... at least not as far as I have read... he presents a very reverent and often moving account of his desire to escape the "slippery slope" and "dangerous" area of moral relativism (his own words) to -- if nothing else -- be able to hand on to his son some sort of faith, or moral groundwork, for his life.
Enjoy your evening!