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Beyond All Mountains Steep

Gifts...
1403. Adam helping me run errands in the rain - dropping me off at the door and staying the truck with Brooklyn and Tobin so I could just run in
1404. The bedtime yoga routine I found in a magazine
1405. Tobin sleeping til a semi-reasonable time (since he went to bed so early...)
1406. Midday morale from Adam, in the form of a hug and a cupcake
1407. Getting all of Brooklyn's clothes organized
1408. Taking a bath while Brooklyn and Tobin napped
1409. Erranding before the rain really started
1410. Spontaneous tea with Heath and Kristin
1411. Watching a movie in its entirety while putting away laundry
1412. Groceries and chai before church, so we didn't have to go after
1413. A walk at the park, just-us-three
1414. Brooklyn giving Adam a kiss goodnight, after putting her toys away with only verbal prompting
1415. 15 minutes of solitude in the sun on the back porch
1416. A snail mail letter that I had totally forgotten about (after I sent my last one, some part of my sleep-deprived brain thought it was over)
1417. My first pair of Fair Trade Friday earrings, from the Refugee Project
1418. Noticing that Brooklyn had messed up the timer in time to rescue the muffins
1419. It being almost (but not quite) too warm to walk at the park - we took a swinging break midway to cool off
1420. Journaling on the balcony with a cup of tea
1421. Salvaging the stained cushion of a chair (with some sale fabric and a roll of ribbon) rather than buying a new one or just living with the stains
1422. A tiny box of morale, brought to the door by the postman
1423. Tobin sleeping a 9 hour stretch, during a time when I could also sleep
1424. Adam home in time to help get everyone ready to go
1425. New Community
_______________

1426. Tobin's 2 month check-up going well - he's more than doubled his birthweight!
1427. Inexpensive flip flops for Brooklyn - she needed a pair of sandals, and she was between sizes on her regular shoes
1428. Finding a double stroller that should work for a long time
1429. A spontaneous drive to Dallas
1430. Relatives who invite us to stay with them, even on just a few hours' notice
1431. Good conversation and lots of knitting time
1432. My cousins happily entertaining/wearing Brooklyn out at the mall
1433. Safe arrival home
1434. Taking a shower and testing a good-smelling new hair treatment
1435. Adam making me breakfast, since Brooklyn had the last muffin for hers
1436. A solitary trip to Whole Foods
1437. The new carton of eggs not smashing all over the floor when Brooklyn pulled it off the counter
1438. Getting sufficiently caught up on rest that a one hour nap was refreshing, instead of demoralizing 
1439. Adam picking up the pictures I forgot about while I was running errands earlier 
1440. Two working vehicles, so he can drive mine to work while his is in the shop for A/C repairs 
1441. Finishing the grey yarn and starting the green on my current project
1442. Our friend/downstairs neighbor going by Dempsey Bakery and getting us cookies
1443. Getting the back porch cleaned and tidied (and not being wasp-stung in the process)
1444. Writing letters on the balcony in the sun
1445. Surprise notes in the mail (as well as Brooklyn's "sleepy doggie" that we accidentally left in Texas and my aunt sent to us)
1446. A three mile walk to Big Dam Bridge all-four-together


Sometimes I count gifts because it's wonderful - and sometimes I count them to remind myself that all is a gift, even when it doesn't feel like it. The past few weeks have been the latter. Some pretty awesome things have happened, but everything's been shrouded in a dreary sort of fog that deadens the joys and amplifies the negative... but I still count on. Because even when I'm in darkness buried deep (whether that darkness be figurative or literal), I cling to the reminder that above all shadows rides the sun, and stars forever dwell. The sun will rise again - and because the Son has risen (the greatest gift of all!), I already know how the Story ends; that Good will triumph and Darkness will be banished for eternity.



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