For people who are generous with their time, their gifts, and their resources.
For new friends and old friends.
THANK YOU to everyone who came to Tyler Gold Run, who donated, who volunteered, who helped behind the scenes, and who prayed. You have truly made a difference by going gold.
September is almost over. Our mission is not.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” (Luke 10:2)
“David also said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.” (1 Chronicles 28:20)
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”(Hebrews 10:23-25)
~ for a delicious traditional gyro smothered in tzatziki sauce.
~ for a crisp, fresh new candle.
~ for my new diffuser running nonstop with eucalyptus oil.
~ for new Tyler Gold Run shirts! Always exciting to open the boxes and see the latest design. And it doesn’t hurt that I have the cutest models in all the land!
~ for a week of all things GOLD: hours of putting out Tyler Gold Run signs, Run Committee meeting, radio interview, speaking to 3rd graders about Gold Network and Childhood Cancer Awareness Month,
and for the arrival of my long-awaited custom GOLD glitter chucks!
~ for the conquering of an IMPOSSIBLE SATURDAY. Talk about a day when we needed a few clones! We had one sister with a cross country meet in Longview at 8am. One sister with a volleyball tournament in Gladewater at 8:15am.
And mom had Tyler Gold Run swag bag filling in Tyler at 9am.
SuperDad expertly shuttled the girls where they needed to be, and the rest of the Tribe helped me. Then we headed to the barn to hang sheet metal for 9 hours! Days like that harshly remind me of my age. But God!
~ for wonderful fellowship with dear friends at church and afterwards. What an awesome gift.
We are all systems GOLD this week. Speaking to schools, several interviews, last minute details, coordinating volunteers, and every big and small detail leading up to our 8th Annual Tyler Gold Run 5K. I can’t believe it’s been 8 years! What a ride!
We’ve learned so much and met the most incredible people along the way. I will never understand why Sawyer got cancer, but I will never stop thanking God for the undeniable beauty He brought from those painful ashes. You can learn more about Gold Network of East Texas or register for the run here. Local or not, runner or not, you can make a donation at any time via our website. Do it for Sawyer. Do it for Bristell. Do it for Sophie. Do it for all the children around the world who need someone to stand up and say that kids with cancer need better care and more funding. Together we can make a difference.
Hope to see lots of you Saturday!
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:58)
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” (Proverbs 31:8-9)
~ for the yummiest perfectly toasted cranberry Einstein Bagel.
~ for everyone (even me) settling in to the school routine. This little nugget is loving her class SO MUCH! She says she especially loves the naps and “a-spanish.”
~ for a super fun evening of fellowship with our church Women’s Ministry painting at Pinot’s Palette.
~ for NO MORE PUPPIES IN MY HOUSE!!! Pups #6, #7, and #8 found their families early this week.
#8 (aka Blue Boy, now named Rusty) was lone wolf for a few days until his new mama could drive in from Laredo, so he got some extra special treatment. This was a much more challenging litter, with the new smaller surroundings, brutal summer heat, and less than ideal timing during back to school. SO THANKFUL to have “been strong and courageous and done the work” and to now have it behind us!
~ for Josh’s Father’s Day gifts getting lots of use: his noise canceling headphones, equipped with Bluetooth AND AM/FM tuner, perfect for listening to Texas Rangers Baseball while he mows.
And his stackable scaffolding, which makes the continued process of building our barn possible. (Still not a fan of heights though!)
~ for our boys’ joy at finding creatures out at the farm.
MOST creatures anyway!
~ for Kora’s very first Cross Country meet. We all got up at an ABSURD hour for a Saturday morning to have her an hour early for a meet an hour away! I’ve never even attended a Cross Country meet before! It was a great experience for all of us, and special to be there for Kora’s very first activity. I failed miserably at getting pictures, but she ran hard and did great. We are so proud of her!
~ for a fabulous treat, lunch at the world famous Dairy Palace in Canton on the way home.
~ for more hard work at the farm. I’m so worn out, my TIRED IS TIRED. Josh didn’t earn the nickname “Mr. Giddyup” for nothing. I’ve never been so thankful for Mondays in my life – because I get a break!
It’s a big week. Tuesday Gold Network of East TX will host our annual Go GOLD ETX event on the Downtown Square to kick off Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. It’s always such a special evening to honor our HEROES and cheer them on as they walk the gold carpet with their families. And a sobering one as we see the impactful display of all our kids on the ever-expanding Wall of HEROES, and when we release balloons for the friends we’ve lost along the way. Please join us if you are local: 6:30-8:30pm on the Tyler Downtown Square.
And then it’s September.
I can’t believe I’ve been blogging now for 8 years, since Sawyer’s cancer diagnosis turned our world upside down. I’ll never forget God telling me to thank Him while laying on that vinyl couch next to the hospital crib where my baby was receiving chemo.
THANK HIM? But I did. And it changed me. And I’ve been thanking Him ever since, sometimes freely and sometimes completely against my will. As much as I hate cancer and mourn all that Sawyer was forced to endure, I am grateful for the mission and ministry that was birthed from that excruciating season of suffering.
In 2015, we found 9 families in East TX that had faced childhood cancer. 7 years later, we have connected with more than 100. Which is simultaneously wonderful and devastating. BUT GOD.
Will you GO GOLD with us this year? Follow Gold Network of East Texas on social media to learn more about childhood cancer and how YOU can make a difference.
And thanks for giving thanks with me.
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)
““Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, For they shall be comforted.” (Matthew 5:3-4)
~ for Samantha having the most incredible opportunity to go and shadow her cousin, Emma, at her job at an equestrian facility.
Sam has had horse fever for a while now, and our plans for country living have amplified them BIG TIME. But we of course need to make sure she understands how much hard work, sacrifice, and commitment horses are before we get in over our heads. This was a great first opportunity for her to spend some real time with real horses. And let me just say…she is SMITTEN! So thankful for this wonderful opportunity. And Emma is a tremendously patient and gifted teacher!
~ for the unexpected blessing of a dinner date with my Love and Colton! Best steak ever, also!
~ for a fun, if WAY TOO SHORT, visit from sweet Grace.
~ for a great trip to the public library to get everyone set up for their school summer reading assignments
…and for the EXQUISITE hour each day when everyone is reading SILENTLY, and I get to spend time with my new hobby – grown up paint-by-numbers! My sweet friend wanted to make sure I had a creative outlet while we take our hiatus from Giddyup & Whoa, and this project has been just the ticket!
~ for tremendous progress on my latest farm project – clearing thorn-vine-choked crepe myrtles. These poor shrubs were completely smothered, and little by little, I have fought to set them free.
I’m pretty sure this thicket has been the main source of my poison ivy or oak, so I’m thankful to be almost done! I am also on my THIRD DOSE of steroids, and the worst of the rash is clearing up. I’m SO READY to be done with that!
~ for icy cold watermelon and hot gas station pizza!
~ for watching my husband be the best dad. He’s so intentional with both our boys and our girls, teaching them tips and skills. Our girls have helped frame the barn and tend the burn pile, and Gavin had a mowing lesson this week.
~ for three happy kids who got dropped off for a glorious week at Pine Cove Summer Camp. Cooper, Samantha, and Kora were so excited for this amazing opportunity, and it was a family affair to brave the sweltering Texas heatwave to get them set up with their cabins and bunk mates. I would say it will be a quiet week without them, but I know better! I know they will have a wonderful time, and I pray they press into all that the Lord has for them in this perfectly appointed setting.
~ for a most welcome surprise: a visit from our dear neighbor (from 2 neighborhoods ago) Mr. Stockton. We were sad many years ago when he moved to Houston, but have been glad to keep in touch every now and then. We got a call that he was in town and wanted to “see his kids,” and it just blessed us to pieces.
~ for the sweetest neighborhood friendships.
~ for country sunsets. I can’t get enough of them.
Friends, will you please join me in praying for our precious HERO friend, Bristell? At just 4 years old, she is facing her THIRD battle with cancer. News of her recent relapse devastated her family, and they were initially told they were out of options. BUT GOD. He opened a door for a clinical trial in Houston, and she was enrolled in 24 hours. Let’s lift up this incredible little girl and her family!
More reminded than ever this week that life is a gift. Relationships, connections, causal interactions, all have purpose. Split second turning points: choose to be curt or be kind. Or to be kind or be QUIET. For better or worse, we impact those around us in big and small ways. Are we building or tearing down? We always have the choice to be humbly grateful or grumbly hateful. And both postures are contagious. Let’s be Light in this dark world.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“…continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life…” (Philippians 2:12-16)
“It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High, proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night,” (Psalms 92:1-2)
~ for a whirlwind week full of hard work and fun! Literally not one single day or evening free.
~ for being able to celebrate our Carson Grace turning 21. We know God has incredible plans for her life, and we can’t wait to see how He uses her.
~ for a wonderful full week of VBS. The big kids served with old and new friends, and the younger kids attended with old and new friends. We sang and played and worshipped and ate together, and it was an absolutely exhausting week packed with fun. So grateful for our wonderful church.
~ for lots of sweat equity out on the farm. Mowing, chain sawing, junk hauling, and briar clearing.
We work hard and get dirty and sweaty side by side with our kids, and it’s awesome to slowly see our vision come to life.
I’ve gotten wrapped up in some poison ivy, on both arms and my EYELID, so that meant a call in to the doctor for some high dose steroids, and I’m NOT GREAT at not scratching! Just part of the process, I guess. This weekend we added some essentials to make it feel really like home: popsicles, a stereo, and a coffee pot of course!
~ for a fun night at American Cancer Society’s Little Wranglers event. Everyone’s favorite was the petting zoo!
~ and for an incredible day back at Globe Life Field representing Gold Network ETX as guests of Derek Holland’s 60 Feet 6 Foundation at the Celebrity Softball Classic. We may not have known many of the “celebrities,” but the event was top notch.
We were greeted as VIPs, escorted onto the field through the players entrance, and Sawyer received a custom Sawyer the Warrior official team jersey.
The whole family enjoyed touring the dugouts and the field, running the bases, and meeting various athletes, actors, artists, and military veterans. We enjoyed an endless buffet in a private suite and met other pediatric cancer families. It was a truly unforgettable day.
~ for the sight of happy, dirty kids living their best lives.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts. They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty— and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They tell of the power of your awesome works— and I will proclaim your great deeds. They celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord. Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever.” (Psalms 145:3-7, 21)
~ for the unparalleled overwhelming Love of Jesus that has poured out among the hurting families in our church. Thank you for the prayers, and please keep them coming!
~ for walks in our new neighborhood.
We’ve met some kind neighbors and are gradually settling in. Hanging up some familiar decor makes it feel more like home.
~ for a great morning shopping with Paula for toys for the Gold Network Children’s Hospital Oncology Prize Closet. We are wrapping up the Toy Drive, and went shopping with an amazing $1000 that had been generously donated. I’ll be gathering the donated toys from all our drop-off locations around East Texas, and I CANNOT WAIT to see how many toys you helped us collect! THANK YOU to all who donated!
~ for lots of progress on the farm!
Electricity on in the barn✔️
Cleaning up the barn slab✔️
Rides on the new mower✔️
I can’t express the joy Josh and I are feeling as we work hard side by side with our kids and slowly bring out the true beauty of this neglected little piece of land. When we spend the day out there, we leave exhausted, dripping with sweat, scratched up from thorns, and covered in grit…and truly, absolutely, remarkably HAPPY.
~ for our first glorious sunset.
~ for an amazing day for our 3rd HERO Hangouts outing. We were able to take 55 childhood cancer warriors, siblings, parents, grandparents, and friends to a Texas Ranger baseball game!
Amazing tickets, parking, ballpark food, Blue Bell ice cream, and a WIN made for a fabulous day! It fills my heart with such joy to be able to gather these incredible families together for a fun day that has NOTHING TO DO WITH CANCER!
I had the opportunity to share testimonies with a few people at the stadium, and they were truly blessed. Thank You Lord for Gold Network ETX, and the favor You have poured out on us. Out of our very worst nightmare You birthed a vessel of blessing to so many, and we will be forever grateful.
~ for our first LIVESTOCK acquisitions for the farm! We hope they will help us keep the mice, rats, and snakes at bay! Meet Bo, Luke, and Daisy!
~ for a great first night at VBS. Kids are having a blast.
What a kickoff to summer. I know this is one we will always remember.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised.”(Psalms 113:3)
How is my baby boy so grown? It was fun to celebrate him, and feast on his consistent annual menu of choice: crescent chicken, sweet potato fries with homemade ranch, and confetti cake.
~ for more good baseball. (And is it ok if I’m also thankful that the end of the season is in sight?)
~ for my favorite Farmer’s Market salad from Piada Italian Street food. Even if I almost had to share it…
~ for an amazing morning with Sawyer the Warrior representing Gold Network of East Texas at the Annual LukeStrong Race in Palestine.
It’s such a special event, honoring the brave children fighting cancer and their families. I met some incredible people and left with wet eyes and a full heart. Sawyer had a blast playing games and shooting Nerf guns, and proudly told everyone all day what he had had for breakfast: 2 1/2 donuts and a snow cone. Love going to these events with my amazing miracle boy.
~ for a lovely day in Carthage swimming and being blessed by Gina and Justin. They outdid themselves, BBQing the most delicious chicken, accompanied by a tasty salad and the most decadent array of desserts. They spoiled us!
~ for a lovely low-key Mother’s Day with my Loves. A ZINGER of a Sunday sermon, Rounders for lunch, and then more swimming for the kids. I’m so blessed.
~ oh, and one more thing…
Stay tuned. Adventure awaits. And I have a feeling it’s going to be a wild ride…
Thanks for giving thanks with me!
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.” (1 Chronicles 16:34)
“Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you.” (1 Chronicles 28:20)
I am thankful for so much this week. God is good. I have a whole list of blessings and funny stories. I could share pictures of our family and tell you what we’ve been up to.
But my heart is heavy.
We have so many cancer families in crisis right now.
One sweet girl who endured cancer treatment as an infant and had two joy-filled healthy years, now has relapsed. She recently received a bone marrow transplant from her daddy. This week they both shaved their heads.
One handsome young man is battling cancer through his senior year of high school. He was recently diagnosed with avascular necrosis, a crippling degeneration of his joints caused by the poison prescribed to save his life. He’s been a football and baseball player all through school, and he is finishing his high school career in a wheelchair.
Another precious middle school girl is also battling an aggressive cancer and the dreaded avascular necrosis. Not only is she in a wheelchair and facing continual rare side effects, now the AVN is attacking her wrists. Doctors have never seen this before, and there is little that can be done. At 13 years old, this is her reality.
A beautiful teen went for her routine oncology checkup, only for the scans to reveal several new spots and areas of concern.
And just this week, one of our Hero families, parents of a 3 year old brain cancer survivor, took one of the little siblings to the pediatrician with some concerns. The news they received was unthinkable. She has the same brain tumor as her sister.
How? How can this be?
I just don’t even know what to say, except to ask you all to pray. I know God sees. I know He loves all of these children more than we can even imagine, and hates to see them suffer. I know He has a plan. I’m thankful that I know this world is not our home, and our best days are ahead.
So we pray. We lean on one another. We hold fast to Jesus. And we continue to give thanks. Because no matter what, He is still good, and He is still bigger.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”” (Daniel 3:17-18)
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.” (Habakkuk 3:17-19)
“Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things. He brought them out of darkness, the utter darkness, and broke away their chains. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind, for he breaks down gates of bronze and cuts through bars of iron. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.” (Psalms 107:8-9, 14-16, 29-31)
~ for a decadent breakfast at my all time favorite place, First Watch on “Breakfast Day” with Dad and TK. Their pillowy waffles and spicy maple cayenne bacon are what I dream about.
~ for an awesome week for Cooper on Go Week. Each GCS High School grade goes on a different class trip, and Juniors spent the week touring historical sites from Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee back to Dallas. Such an amazing opportunity.
~ for the smell of fresh baked cookies.
~ for an awesome sunshine- soaked day at the ballpark. The UT Tyler Patriot Baseball Team held a “Strike Out Childhood Cancer “ game, and invited Gold Network of ETX families to be honored at the game. 14 year old osteosarcoma survivor, Corbin Glasscock, threw out the first pitch. It was a special day!
~ for Spring Break. Excited for a laid back week with the kids. No real plans, no schedule, just freedom from watching the clock. Lots of baseball practices and sunshine I hope.
~ for the life and legacy of our friend, Sophie. Sawyer only met Sophie once at the hospital, but they bonded instantly and he talked about her constantly.
She was a spunky and sassy and I think Tatum K would have been crazy over her. Sophie was stolen from her family by lymphoma in 2018 before her 3rd birthday. This Saturday she will celebrate turning 7, but in heaven with Jesus instead of here with her Mama and Daddy and little brother. Her incredible family has purposed to make her birthday a day of celebration and encouragement, a day to spread kindness and the love of Jesus in Sophie’s memory. They will take a massive toy donation to Children’s in Dallas to share joy with other kids in their battle. You can donate directly to Sophie’s mom, Shelby here www.paypal.me/ShelbySkiles. Or you can just find a way to spread kindness on March 19. Buy someone’s coffee. Make a meal for a sick friend. #domoreforsophie Happy birthday, sweet girl. We won’t ever forget.
This week I’ve just been super conscious of the stirring God is doing in my heart. I shared last week about feeling like I was at the beginning of coming out of the dark season of oppressive anxiety. I’ve continued to seek the Lord’s leading daily, and have experienced a closeness and a refreshing in His presence. My circumstances and my biology have not changed. Every problem and anxiety is still right there waiting for me, waiting to trip me up, waiting to steal my joy. But I am healthier than I once was. Stronger. I physically feel the armor of the God protecting my heart and my mind.
I was really struck by this Scripture in a new way this week. Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” We may think of PEACE as being passive, the absence of conflict. I never thought about the PEACE OF GOD BEING A GUARD. Jesus is our peace, and He is actively protecting us. Watching over our hearts and minds, if we only will give thanks and ask.
There is so much stirring in my heart…what lies ahead I can scarcely imagine. But I’m thankful for this corner I’ve turned. Doesn’t mean I don’t still have my struggles, hard days, dark days. But instead of feeling like I am sleepwalking, I am alive. Instead of a spectator, I am engaged and ready to put my hands to the plow.
That’s something I learned from Sophie. Life is hard. God is bigger.
May you be encouraged, literally FILLED WITH COURAGE, this week.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
“But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (Colossians 3:14-17)
“Oh, magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together. I sought the Lord, and He heard me, And delivered me from all my fears. Depart from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry.” (Psalms 34:3-4, 14-15)
~ for Rucker birthday season in full force. We celebrated Kora last Sunday,
and the Gavin is our Valentine’s Boy. He had a great day, starting with heart shaped pancakes (of course),
pizza for lunch, and taco salad and ice cream cake.
And today was my turn! A surprise latte from Colton, lots of thoughtful birthday wishes, a delicious salad from Piada for lunch, afternoon nap, and then a FEAST of Ruby’s authentic quesadillas
and my favorite homemade-salted-caramel-sauce-soaked-coffee-infused-chocolate-cake-topped-with-Heath-bits.
With all my Loves here at home. I couldn’t dream of anything better. Thank You Lord, for this family that I don’t deserve.
~ for Sawyer’s chapel character quality award: Generosity. Sawyer has such a loving and generous heart, the fact that he was chosen for this award was no surprise.
~ for a favorite special tradition: February 18 is International Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day, a special day when Gold Network of East Texas partners with families and friends all over to raise awareness of childhood cancer. We eat ice cream to support kids battling cancer, celebrate the survivors, and to honor the memory of our friends we lost too soon. We enjoyed a sweet treat as a family, and then we shared ice cream with Sawyer’s class at school (as well as his warrior classmate, Jase, and another HERO friend, Matthias).
Josh took ice cream to work to his team, Grandmommy organized an ice cream social at her school in Carthage, and pictures flooded in from all over East Texas from HEROES and their supporters. What an incredible community to be a part of!
~ for our first attempt at hibachi on the griddle. Chicken and veggie fried rice was a hit!
~ for the boys’ room finally completed! These boys are so excited: freshly updated room, baseball practices underway (we have a National and an Astro), and just the excitement of trying something new. It’s going to be so busy but such a fun season.
~ for a long-awaited project completion. Our master bath was one of our first makeovers when we moved into this house. Wall to wall carpet, dingy mustard walls and ceilings, discolored cabinetry, and a most unusual round wall with lots of sheetrock damage.
New tile and paint made a huge difference right away.
Last year’s stay-cation brought a new light fixture and textured paintable wallpaper in hopes of disguising the unsightly wall blemishes. But then I hit a quite literal design “wall.” I wasn’t sure what color to paint, and was not at all satisfied with how the wall looked. But this week I bit the bullet and went BOLD with a deep, almost black, charcoal in a matte finish.
And we LOVE IT! The wall dents and cracks are finally almost indistinguishable, and I’m digging the unexpected high contrast color. You’ve come a long way, baby!
~ for God’s protection. As you can well imagine, laundry is a neverending battle at our house. Picking up clothes, hanging up towels, sorting bins, stain spotting, soaking, washing, what to dry, what to hang, fluffing wrinkles, folding, figuring out who in the world each item belongs to, and then putting it all away…it is a round the clock, full on enterprise. Both machines are pretty much running constantly. This week was no different, but when i pulled a load out of the dryer, I thought it smelled bad. Couldn’t quite put my finger on it. I’m notorious for my inability to smell bad odors, so I was really questioning myself. The more I smelled each piece of the dry laundry, the more I decided it all smelled like smoke. I didn’t see anything amiss, but even with the dryer off for the rest of the day, the acrid scent got worse and worse. When Josh got home, we inspected the inside and the back of the dryer. Checked the vent for clogs or lint buildup. Nothing. But when he opened up the dryer, we couldn’t believe it. There were INCHES of lint inside the machine – and all of the underbelly was black – the whole inside of the dryer had been ON FIRE! Yet somehow, miraculously, it had self-extinguished!!! There is absolutely no explanation for this. BUT GOD!
~ for Mr. Giddyup and his brilliant mind for construction. We were certainly not planning to do a laundry room makeover, but that was suddenly on the agenda this week.
We made the switch from our top loaders to front load machines, and the coordinating pedestals were one serious back order, not to mention PRICEY. So of course, Josh built a completely custom built in platform that tied in seamlessly with our existing cabinetry (and the custom reclaimed wood countertop he had installed last year).
I think the whole project from start to finish (from taking the first measurement to both the washer and dryer running) took less than 10 hours! His talent and “giddyup” truly amazes me.
~ and now I’ve never been so thankful to be back in my laundry room! An unexpected three day laundry hiatus (and multiple loads that had to be re-washed) makes for a SERIOUS EVEREST of stinkiness! But the new and improved setup is super functional and efficient, so I’m ALMOST caught up.
It’s a wild season, and I won’t lie and say it’s all glorious. Some days are still a battle to hold fast to the joy of the Lord. But every single day, I open my eyes and thank Him. Every day I remind myself that His plan, His purpose, His faithfulness, His forgiveness, His grace, His love is forever true.
Thanks for giving thanks with me.
“Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.” (Psalms 105:1-4)
“Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”” (Nehemiah 8:10b)
“While there’s breath in my lungs, I will praise You, Lord. The joy of the Lord is my strength. The joy of the Lord is my strength. In the darkness I’ll dance, in the shadows I’ll sing. The joy of the Lord is my strength.” (“Joy of the Lord” by Rend Collective)