Did I tell you that friends from our church fellowship did our family’s laundry while I was visiting Tommy in January? Thank you, R family!
And then a different family offered to take on the children’s laundry when we traveled to bring Tommy home last month. Thank you, L family!
We had more volunteers than we needed to drive us to the airport in June. I’d forgotten to tell you that, too! Thank you, T, for driving us to the airport, and to A and A for driving us home again!
A neighbor friend checked with me before doing her thrift store shopping, and then found everything on the list I gave her! What a help that was while we were on the learning curve of how to contain diaper explosions! Thank you, G!
The friend from our church fellowship who is doing all our family’s ironing at no charge also offered to launder cloth diapers for us each week. Using our stash of bumGenius diapers for Benjamin rather than disposables will save us money, but our laundry process can’t handle anything extra yet. Incidentally, this family is also contributing a generous sum monthly to Tommy and Katie’s care fund. Thank you, M and K!
Another friend from our church fellowship is making and selling Katie candles as a fundraiser for the care fund. This care fund is more helpful than ever since we brought Tommy home! This friend is also brainstorming other ideas for our church fellowship to assist our family during this tough transition time. Thank you, B, and everyone else who has given to this fund!
A family from our church fellowship surprised us with many dozens of yummy homemade cookies in three flavors to send home with us one Sunday. She and her children must have spent an entire day baking cookies! They also blessed us with funds for a family pizza night! Thank you, B family!
We are still receiving a meal per week from a ministry-minded family in our church fellowship. This is like having free cash to spend where most needed each week! Such as a day that is spent in dentist appointments! Thank you, H family!
Ah yes! Dentist appointments! Our family dentist refuses to charge us for Tommy and Katie’s care. Thank you, Dr. T!
[Ready to head to the dentist, 45 minutes from home. The children surprised us–Katie cooperated for the exam cheerfully and Tommy didn’t cooperate at all!]
About once a week, a neighbor or friend randomly blesses us with a meal. Thank you, friends! It may seem random, but God always sends you at just the right time!
The family from our church fellowship who has committed to making us a meal every week loaned us their college-age daughter for a day of painting. Because of my nursing baby and a small child who stayed home with a stomach bug [Yup! More uncontrolled bodily substances!], this young lady ended up more than doubling my efforts, and the entire job was finished that day. Thank you, K!
“Will you have room for some diapers in your car? We got water in our basement last night and have to clean it all out! I have some diapers for Katie and Tommy!” This email came from a good friend who had already blessed us with a sizeable stash of large child and youth disposable diapers, which is being used quickly! We’re saying yes to all offers of diapers! Ha!
This same friend has given us all the special formula we’ve needed since early this year! Thank you, S!
And then I received another email, this time from another good friend, containing another offer of large diapers! She sent over two large garbage bags full of all sorts of diapers, including large disposable diapers, large overnight diapers, swim diapers and classy cloth diapers, cloth and disposable changing pads, diaper cream, and a few other extras. Wow! Thank you, T!
Then there are the countless small provisions and other details that God orchestrates to make life manageable.
I’m thankful for all the helps available for people with disabilities!
[This is stable because the bars go all the way across underneath the mattress. It’s super hard to change the sheets, but it does work. Both sides can go up and down as needed.]
We’re thankful to have a full bathroom right off the kitchen, so when I’m caring for a child during a meal, we can still feel like we’re part of the family gathering.
[After too many indescribable disasters involving Tommy’s highchair, Joe had the brilliant idea of feeding him on the potty. It works! We feed Tommy first so the potty is available for Katie when she’s finished eating, because she can wait, but he can’t. We have to clear the whole area each time so Tommy can’t pull items down. For Katie, we only have to move the roll of toilet paper. More details about the medical cause of Tommy’s loose and explosive bowel issues will be in the next post.]
We’re thankful that Tommy’s favorite food is his most necessary food right now, so when he’s not very hungry, he’ll always eat that, even with his medications and supplements in it!
[Medications and supplements before the food is added]
I’m thankful for a nifty little Cuisinart hand-held blender, which is of inestimable value in my eyes right now…
…and for Wilton silicone loaf pans for freezing and popping out bricks of pureed food, and for a blog reader who told me about both these useful tools…
…for fenugreek and blessed thistle, rolled oats and Mother’s Milk tea, all natural galactagogues that help me keep up a great milk supply even during seasons of very little rest…
[If any of my family is reading this–can you believe I really eat a big bowl of plain oatmeal for breakfast every day–usually cold?! I can’t, either.]
…a straw cup that travels with this nursing mama wherever she goes…
…Kashi granola bars for $1.25 a box at our local bent and dent so I can grab a bite on the run…
…and so can my hungry helpers!
We’re also thankful for good music…
…for Daniel’s meticulous work…
[We will miss him greatly when he begins full-time work this fall!]
[Yes, we were without a kitchen table for almost ten days!]
…for Laura’s help with the laundry…
[She recently decided to put a little laundry money toward a few months’ violin rental, just to try it out…]
…and for local thrift stores that have fabulous half-price sales and fill-a-bag-for-$10 sales of wonderful, quality clothing and other items our family uses.
We’re also so thankful for hand-me-downs from friends.
[Sunday clothes laid out for the eight youngest children]
We’re thankful that I had so much experience helping a baby form a good sleep pattern that it became second nature to me. This life would not work with a baby fussing to snack every forty-five minutes or hour. Ben takes full nursings every three or so hours during the day and is a great sleeper for naps and night time.
Waking up happy!
He is such a strong, alert, interactive baby!
[I had to put a collection of baby pics in here somewhere, don’t you know! He’s three months old tomorrow.]
One more thing. Can you believe that I have only two email conversations in my Blessing of Verity inbox right now? TWO. After a couple of years of an unbelievably heavy email load, a manageably small number of emails is now coming in. Just enough to easily keep up with. It shows restraint and understanding that I am so grateful for. Thank you, everyone!
This post is full of exclamation marks for a reason. Every single item that is gifted to us, every service that is offered, every word of encouragement spoken, every prayer offered for us, all are so valuable to our family and lovely in the sight of God.
We’re on the other side now, on the side that looked like a scary future. This life demands a lot of resources. And we’re expecting it to get harder.
Will we have enough?
It might look too big for us, but it’s not too big for God.
We are trusting Him and taking our requests to Him.
He is proving Himself faithful.
Just as He said He would.