the sweet parts


Tears are in my eyes because the days are full and beautiful.  You are so good to me, Father, my heart is humbled and bows before You forever and ever.  There is sweetness in daily life with Jesus that only a believer can understand.

Mental illness is a horrible thing.  Two years ago I was afraid I was dying, I wanted to die, I didn’t want to die.  I was having panic attacks.  But by the grace of God His love went deeper than my darkest moments.  I began taking 50mgs of antidepressant each morning to combat the depression and my friends, for the last 2 YEARS I have passed each day on the shaky edge of a cliff of exhaustion.

I want to share with you that I finally figured out the solution to that trembling exhaustion, and it is so very simple I can’t believe I didn’t think of it sooner; I’m taking my pill at night before bed!  I’ve been doing this for over a week now and the difference in my energy is very marked.

For the first time in years, I feel like my old self, actually, I feel better than my old self.

Still, I hold this “feeling good” loosely in my hands as an offering to my Father in heaven, who has a plan and a purpose for each of His beloved daughters.  Only He knows what is in store for us in this life.  One thing is certain, nothing can compare to the joy awaiting us in Heaven.   What a mercy that divine joy skips and laughs through our days even now.

I have 45 minutes before I have to take little Sarah Joy to the dentist and I’m still in my pajamas but I want to blog and write so very badly that here I sit, with my cold feet warming up on a corn bag, under a blanket crocheted by a mystery person (bought from the thrift store) in blue and brown.

I think you will really like these snapshots from the last few days;


There are many different varieties of pine trees and we have some that have these teeny tiny pinecones on them.  I had the loveliest moment the other day, watching two cute chickadees working their beaks into these cones to eat the tasty seeds within.



Under the tree there was an old wooden raft that Ethan had made for the pond; I found bits of pinecone left behind from the birds’ feasting.


Seth was walking along singing to himself.


While Sarah Joy pretended to fish.  I’m determined to get them outside as much as possible, even 15 minutes of fresh air and nature makes a big difference.


We mixed up gingerbread dough and by the time David and Caleb came home it was cold enough to work with.


I found these cookie cutters which the boys LOVED.

The box gives a recipe and cautioned:  “Super-Stealthy—–they disappear as soon as you make them”


“Your hands move like a whisper, cutting dark shapes into pre-rolled dough”

(I bought them at the mall but has them, too.  BTW, they are plastic.)

I get uptight during these endeavors so it was a good thing that Sarah sincerely needed my help because then I had to ignore what the boys were doing.  And of course they did JUST FINE without me breathing down their necks.


It was true that they disappeared in a very sneaky way, in just one short afternoon!


Christmas decorations from the great outdoors.


Christmas decorations from the Hallmark store; this one is so cute; it’s solar powered and moves it’s arms and legs to make  a snow angel.


Scarlet and Shamrock fiesta vases


Sherlock washing his face in the sunshine.


A frosty pearl of a morning.  Yesterday dawned clear and cold.  We left the house early for a day of Community Bible Study.


These two got to be in the children’s Christmas program.


Seth wore a crown.


Sarah Joy (front row) wore a halo.  See Seth looking at her?  And she’s studying her halo.


Sarah has a performing streak, I noticed.  They all did so well, & all the mamas were properly adoring and appreciative.


Sarah Joy was with me in the front row during the last song, dancing with all her heart, so Annie called her up on stage!


With my littlest love.




There is  no frost this morning, we are back to chilly rain and fog.  I’m taking Sarah downtown to the dentist and then home until 4:30 when I have to pick up the boys from wrestling and go to a teacher’s conference at the elementary school.

I hope to get around to visit some of your sites today.  I haven’t had the extra time to read blogs lately but I look forward to doing that later, during naptime.

Grace, peace, thanksgiving, joy, and prayer to each one who passes through this page today.  You are loved.


To God’s holy people……., the faithful brothers and sistersin Christ:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father…….

Colossians 1:2






14 thoughts on “the sweet parts

  1. I’m so sorry I didn’t know about your exhaustion. Taking meds at night was one of the first thing my dr, suggested for me to combat exhaustion. However, it has the opposite effect on me…so it’s perfect for me to take in the morning. I’m so glad you’re feeling better. The power of anxiety to steal joy is greatly underestimated.

    I’m not particularly a cat person, but that picture of Sherlock is so cute. My Jack-Jack looked at it, meowed, and said, “Hi Cat!”

    I love the picture of Sarah Joy checking out her halo. It belongs in a magazine. Or framed on wall for Christmas. Adorable.

    Have a blessed day, my friend.

  2. So glad that switching your dose time made such a huge difference! What a blessing. Love the pond picture of Sarah fishing and of Seth in the crowd at the play. Such cuties. Sherlock looks nice and comfy in his spot in the sun.

  3. Sarah makes a perfect angel!

    I love your heart Shanda. I’m so happy that you are feeling like you normal self again! It’s not easy being momma but doing all that you do while feeling exhausted… I can only imagine how hard that must have been. Love you my friend!

  4. Thanks for sharing. I know what you’re going thru, and I’m so glad you found a better way to take your pills. It can get tricky!:).
    Thank God He gives us all the sweet moments in our day. They are gifts.;).
    God bless, christina

  5. Happy to hear this for you Shanda! Thankful that God is faithful in your life and sustaining you in your weaknesses. Thanking Him for the wisdom He has given you regarding your meds.
    Your pix are great as always. I love your Blue curtains! I wish I could see your house in person and all the changes in it! 😉
    The tree ordainment is just darling. Did you get it this year?
    I thought about giving you a call sometime. It has been years..literally! Finding the time is hard but I promise to try. 🙂
    Much love to you always.

  6. I love this post, Shanda! Your heart is so sweet and your photos so pretty. I’m SO delighted that you found relief from the shakiness. Love your kitchen table and vases…and the little angel.

  7. Sorry to hear about your exhaustion!!!!!! I had no idea from reading your blog…it is always a delight to read here..but sharing hardships here and there is also so good to read because it makes us realize we are not alone in this big world with our difficulties . Big hugs to you my friend! I’m so happy for you that you have figured out a way to take the meds to help you with energy!!!! So so glad!
    You littles are adorable…oh my goodness…can I keep them?

    I’m at blogspot but copy and paste almost every post here at wordpress. Hope you are able to read here or there…you have access to both. Its been really hard for me to figure out how I want to blog since xanga changed:( I think I will keep it like this now. If for some reason you cant see my posts…do let me know.

    Have an amazing day!

  8. I am so happy to hear that you are feeling better! I dearly know the exhaustion-thing and it’s so discouraging. I’m rejoicing with you that you found a solution.

    Your pictures are absolutely priceless! I love the one of Sarah studying her halo…and Seth watching Sarah.

    I have seen a lot of winter pictures lately with those red berries. The only red-berry thing I know is Pyracantha…not sure if that’s correct, but they are beautiful in the vase.

    I LOL-ed at the Ninja-bread men. 🙂 Too cute.

  9. My boys would love ninjabread men cookie cutters, but would probably prefer them to be sugar cookies than gingerbread. Every year we make a gingerbread house but most of it never gets eaten.

    I love Sarah’s picture with her reflection in the water.

  10. I’m so so happy you had your serotonin discovery. I just can’t imagine being so exhausted all the time with everything you have to do!! Exhaustion just blunts me. I love the picture of Sherlock. Also the description “a frosty pearl of a morning”. Sarah was an ADORABLE angel.

  11. I love your honesty. It’s encouraging.
    So happy you were able to find a solution that makes you feel back to yourself!
    Being tired when trying to take care of a family is no fun at all.

    You were right…I did like all of the pictures you posted. Outside is just gorgeous by your house. the ninjas! I showed my son..he said “Oh wow”. I’ll have to check those out. 😉


  12. Bless you my friend. I hope that you continue to feel like your old self and find the meds working well. Sarah is priceless looking up at her halo! So darling. I remember those kinds of programs and they sure warm a mommy’s heart.

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