June 28, 2012

think of such things {a prayer}

Oh Lord, my mind is being pulled towards anxious thoughts - playing them over and over again in my head. Please help me to focus on things that are true and pleasing to you. May my thoughts, words, and deeds glorify you.

And thank you, God of peace, for promising to be with me.

'For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, but My lovingkindness will not be removed from you, and My covenant of peace will not be shaken,' says the LORD who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10


June 26, 2012

A day in the life... {summer fun}

We are diving into week three of summer break and, just as I suspected, a key ingredient in helping Grant stay calm is keeping him very engaged. Add that to the fact that 100 percent of his therapy lies solely on my shoulders during summer time equals one busy mama!

But after a couple weeks, I think we have fine-tuned a schedule that keeps the day moving and intertwines some therapy. It starts by getting the boys outside as early as possible before the heat of the day sets in.

While outside I try to pull together various items to make an obstacle course to work on Grant's physical and sensory needs (balance, strength, vestibular, tactile, etc...)

Naturally, Wesley has to get in on the action!


"Heavy work" therapy is a vital component to Grant's sensory diet. Here he is lifting a weighted ball and pushing it down the little slide to complete the obstacle course.

Once the day starts to get intensely warm, it's time to head inside for a snack and to read a few books.

Grant works on some fine motor skills during his Therapeutic Listening Therapy. While matching is one of Grant's strengths, he struggles to focus and have enough control over his fingers/hands to wiggle the puzzle pieces firmly into place.

And, of course, there is lots and lots of jumping and swinging - both outside and inside.

Click here to read a little more about Grant's sensory diet and here to see our sensory therapy room.

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We always make time to have fun!

Pool time!

Watching the train pass through downtown Waxhaw

Wesley inspecting a turtle found at Grandma & Grandpa Mayes' house

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Grant loves baseball. I don't know how or when exactly it started, but his passion for the game began a long time ago. I guess the same goes for softball. Aaron has been a member of our church's softball team for years.

Grant shook with excitement when Aaron went to bat.

Wesley practiced his pitch (he has quite a wind up) with Ms. Donna, who was so sweet to play with him.

For the love of the game...

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It rained a bit and the boys, who were already dressed to jump into the pool, wanted run around on the wet sidewalks up front. They had so much fun being silly and splashing in the little puddles.

Practicing yoga moves

Out on the front porch reading a book with Daddy

Ahhh yes... the sweetness of treasuring the little things.


June 22, 2012

Practicing God's Presence {as a busy mom}

Weaving my way through a field of flowers, I feel the close presence of God. As I walk, I begin to share my thoughts, my fears, my joys...

Growing up on a small family farm, nestled deep in the countryside of rural America, I was very familiar with stillness. It was easy to go on walks and feel isolated from the cares of the world. My favorite conversations with God were on those walks.

So as I steal away from the busyness of the day, I am reunited with my Friend who I have come to know deeply through our many quiet times together. But this time, interestingly, I became a little sad. I know that God is with me throughout my busy day, amidst the never-ending to-do lists and demands of mothering, but why can't I experience the same closeness?

You can, He whispers to my soul.

My mind drifts to the writings in Practicing the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence (a short but very powerful book). Brother Lawrence, who lived as a monk in the 17th century, was assigned to work as a cook in a bustling monastery kitchen. In spite of the daily demands and his own insecurities, "Brother Lawrence learned to retreat to a place in his heart where the love of God made every detail of his life of surpassing value."

"There is not in the world a kind of life more sweet and delightful, than that of a continual conversation with God; those only can comprehend it who practice and experience it." 
~ Brother Lawrence

Continual conversation with God... My first reaction to such an idea was one of amazement. Then I was filled with doubt. I mean, that's all well and good for a monk, but seriously, how can I, a mother of two little boys (and one with significant special needs), continuously practice God's presence?

The more I thought about it the more I wanted it. So I made a list of ways I could begin practicing the presence of God as a busy mom. And let me say, I have been greatly rewarded. 

1. Acknowledge His presence: I find just simply reminding myself that God is omnipresent makes me more aware of His presence. Truly, He is here beside me. Also, I try to talk aloud of His power and majesty so my children can hear; to voice how nature reflects His glory. It is incredible how that puts my whole family in a "praising mood".

2. Worship/Thanksgiving: Praising God and recounting His provisions adjusts my heart to a state of humility and intense adoration - setting the stage for trust, joy, and wonderful conversation. I love to sing hymns as I work and sing praise songs with my children. 

3. Eliminate unnecessary distraction: Turning off the TV, putting away the cell phone, and shutting down the computer all help to ease the level of distraction around me so I can converse with God while checking off the items on my to-do list. Plus, eliminating those distractions help me to get my work done faster so I am able to have a time of quiet with God. 

4. Spend time in the Word/Memorize & Quote Scripture: What is better than leaning on God's words of truth and vocalizing His promises?! Scripture memorization is one area where I very much lack. I often put verses around the house but rarely do I commit them to memory... I am going to change that.

5. Pray: Just like dialoging with a friend, coming before the throne of God throughout the day and sharing my thoughts with God fuels growth in our relationship and foster my awareness of His presence. How wonderful and amazing it is that we, thanks to Christ, can openly converse with God! 

5b. Repent: Remove the barrier that hinders growth of the relationship. There is no greater thing than receiving God's beautiful, faithful grace after confessing my sin. This is the very reason why Christ died and defeated death - to restore a broken relationship. 

"We should fix ourselves firmly in the presence of God by conversing all the time with Him...we should feed our soul with a lofty conception of God and from that derive great joy in being his. We should put life in our faith. We should give ourselves utterly to God in pure abandonment, in temporal and spiritual matters alike, and find contentment in the doing of His will, whether he takes us through sufferings or consolations." ~ Brother Lawrence

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But yet, I will always see my walks as a special time with my Friend...


June 15, 2012

show me the way {a prayer}

Many days I am simply putting one foot in front of another as I walk through the week. I do not know the exact path (the way often seems dark and confusing), but I do know where it ends and who I am walking with... Thank you, Lord, for leading me through another week. 

Oh the breathless, glorious beauty I see when my trust is in you, Lord!

June 8, 2012

tidbits of joy

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My college roommate, Laura, was in town this week and it was FABULOUS! Too many years had passed since we had seen each other so I was overjoyed when I found out she was coming for a visit.

Thinking back to our college days, little did we know how much our lives would parallel each other. I have a child with significant developmental special needs and she has two sweet boys (twins) with significant medical needs. We both have learned to savor the precious moments in the midst of life-changing struggles.

One of the many precious moments I savored during Laura's four-day stay was her sweet interaction with my sons. She took the time to get to know Grant and Wesley and they adored her and all the fun times she played with them.


June 1, 2012

scenes along the way

While the path may be rocky, I have witnessed breathtaking beauty and experienced bubbling-over joy. And those little things {the boys playing together, family dinners, raindrops, wild flowers, a funny story, evening walks, silly faces, a good book, a hug, first words}... well, they all add up to big blessings that fill my life. 


Thanks for joining us along the way.

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