She was only four days old when I took this picture, and some days I still cry. I still get emotional when I think about the gift I’ve been given.  That I get to hold her.  I get to laugh with her. I get to snuggle and rock and play with her. I get to do this baby stage again…one more time.

Several days ago, I was holding her while watching my big kids chase each other around my husband’s truck. Around and around they went, their laughter riding the wind.  It was music to my ears.  And I watched them do this very ordinary thing—playing chase—that all kids do on this very ordinary Friday, and it all felt anything but ordinary.  It felt extra-ordinary because I was viewing it through the lens of gratitude.

I get to do this.  I get to watch these children I’ve loved for years now chase each other and fill the air with their laughter, and yes, sometimes their yells and whining too. But it’s all a gift.

And once again I felt it fill my heart—this appreciation and recognition of the blessings I’ve been given.  Sometimes I see laundry piles and dirty dishes and spilled cereal and to-do lists, and feel overwhelmed—like I’ll never catch up.  But then I hold this sweet baby girl. I read stories with my big kids and tuck them in at night. I help carve pumpkins and make pb&j sandwiches for school lunches and try to find matches for socks, and I remember…

Life is a gift.  There’s a lot to do some days.  Some weeks are challenging for a variety of reasons, and some are plain out hard. But in and through it all, I want to remember the gifts God has given me and live and love accordingly.  I want to readily recognize His hand and His goodness not only in the spectacular but in the everydayness of life…because when we really think about it, getting to live this everyday life is pretty spectacular.

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