Gratitude Day 105 – A Simple Cover

Sat., Aug. 25, 2018

Acts 2:28 – You have shown me the paths of life; your presence will fill me with happiness.

Today, I am sharing about something relatively new in my life. Something that I didn’t expect to bring me so much happiness. Something so simple, it’s crazy.

I have a new cover for my cell phone. And I am in love.

A couple weeks ago, I shared how I had problems with my cell phone and ended up buying a new phone in the same day. Very unexpectedly with the goal not to lose the information I keep stored on my phone. With the new phone, I accomplished this.

Awhile back, I bought a wallet cover for my previous phone. After reading a blog written by a woman who LOVED her phone cover, I found one online and ordered it. It took just a little getting used to. This phone cover was bulkier and a little bigger than I would have preferred. But it worked.

When I purchased this new phone, I knew I wanted another phone cover. I feel the cover protects the phone a bit from when I occasionally and accidentally drop it. I went online and ordered this one.

cover front

Grey has been a favorite color for years; long before grey was hip and in style. Like all the way back to high school. I was not sure about the cognac leather-looking material with the grey. But the pretty stitching that matches the cognac material makes the cover look high-end, even though it was not very expensive.

cover back

I ordered one and waited. A couple days later, it arrived. Anxious, I took it out of the mailer and my heart sank. It was not the right size. Apparently, I clicked on the wrong phone when I ordered it. A couple e-mails later, I had instructions to return the wrong size and reordered the correct size.

When the second cover and right size arrived, my heart was filled with happiness. The phone fit just right. I moved the couple cards I carried in the previous case into the new one. I was off and running.


Is it crazy when a silly phone case makes my day? Yes. It’s kind of like the parchment paper.

Recently, a couple people asked me how I like my new phone. Honestly, I am more in love with the cell phone cover than the phone. A $10 cell phone cover.

standing up

The past few months, I have chosen to focus on a few small things that bring me joy and happiness in my life rather than looking for some big event that will “change” my world. I am convinced that the world becomes a brighter and happier place when we celebrate little wins in our lives. When we find one, small opportunity that makes our heart sing this day, it is a good day.

Too often, we put a lot of energy into finding some “right” thing that we think will make life “better.” I tend to think it’s the small, daily choices we make day in and

Choosing to spend a little time with a dear friend.

Reading a book for even a few minutes.

Taking a 20-minute walk to clear your head.

Looking at a new cell phone cover and feeling happiness.

What is one small way you can find happiness in today? Celebrate something that brings you joy? Remember that life is really more about a whole bunch of small, little choices that add value to our lives than big events that may or may not reach our expectations?

For little things in life that bring us joy and happiness, I am grateful.

Almighty God – it is so easy to think that a huge change will make everything better. Yes, we read stories of people whose lives were dramatically changed by a single event. But we can also see joy and happiness daily in little choices and opportunities in our lives. I pray we celebrate these as small, daily wins; ways we see your presence in our ordinary lives. Amen.

Blessings –


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Gratitude Day 42 – Joy


Wed., May 16, 2018

Acts 16:34 – The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household. 

A couple weeks ago, Hubby Rick and I happily set up our wonderful porch for spring and summer. (See: We so enjoy this living space when the weather allows.

I am in this mode of reducing the amount of possessions I have. Maybe you also read recently that the average American home has something like 300,000 items. Seriously? I am not going to count. I am working on having less.

Yet, when I was picking up a gift recently, I saw these colorful plastic glasses. Just the colors I like to use to decorate the porch. They were less than $4 for all 8. It took me about 2.5 seconds to put them into the cart. Then, I found some super cute plates that matched the glasses. They were a little more expensive: $1.99 each. At first, I had four in my hand. Then 6. I quickly did the math. For less than $20, I could have some fun and springy new plates and glasses for our porch. Done deal.

20180504_105131A couple days later, I made brunch. We love eggs for bunch. I made a little extra effort this day, adding spinach, cheese and other veggies. The additional color in the eggs made the plates look even prettier.

It was a beautiful spring day. Naturally, we would eat on the porch. I was so excited to put the plates and glasses on this wooden tray, which I use to carry things to the porch. It was my Grandma Deaton’s tray, made by my Grandpa Deaton. She used the tray to carry meals out to their screened-in porch in central Iowa. It was a favorite place to eat when we visited their house.

20180504_105207I think brunch tasted even better on these pretty plates. The porch was filled with joy. Over some silly plates and glasses. I know … it’s rather ridiculous. But when joy fills our hearts, it is a good day.

I have a box in which I’m gathering things to donate. I did pull out 8 beat-up plastic glasses and put them in the give-away box before giving the new glasses a home. I know, it’s just a wash … but at least it’s not adding.

As much as I am trying to get rid of, it is amazing the joy these new items have brought into my heart.

For this, I am grateful.

The joy of something simple can so brighten a day, Lord God. May we find joy in some little thing today.  Amen.

Blessings –


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A Sign of Spring

Trillium by our house. Do you spot the Jack-In-The-Pulpit as well?

Fri., May 19, 2017

Exodus 25:32-33 – It will have three branches going out from each side of the center shaft, each branch decorated with three almond flowers.

 Spring has been VERY slow in Wisconsin this year. Yet, one of the favorite spring-time traditions showed up right on time.

Growing up, we didn’t go to town to get flowers for Mom on Mother’s Day. We went to the woods and picked ice cream buckets full of trillium. We’d bring them home and fill vases with these gorgeous wildflowers who naturally would bend over the vase’s edge.

These three-petaled show stoppers are truly one of my favorite flowers. Natural shade lovers, trillium grew in our woods and would be a white blanket of beautifulness each spring. A few flowers would have a hint of pink in them, with more pinkness towards the end of the trillium season. For me, trillium was the indicator that spring had arrived and Mother’s Day was just around the corner.

I knew that I would not be seeing my Mom on Mother’s Day this year. However, I saw her a few days before. Right before I took her back to her now permanent residence at the nursing home, we took a drive to the property that was the farm where I grew up. I knew exactly which woods would most likely have trillium blooming. And we were not disappointed. Endless trillium bowed for us as we observed them. They were truly at their peak and a beautiful sight to behold. I grabbed the scissors I always keep in the glove compartment and snipped off just a couple flowers to grace my Mom’s room at the nursing home. (Yes, I know they are protected. Please don’t turn me into the DNR!)

Upon returning home, I walked by the north side of our house and was pleasantly surprised to see a bank of trillium. This is just the second spring we’ve been living here. There were a few trillium here last spring. This year, one little corner off the house looked stunning. A few Jack-In-The-Pulpit only added more beauty.

Why am I such a fan of trillium? Probably because these were the wildflowers we always picked. It’s really that simple. I’d love to tell you it was because their three-petal shape inspired me to recall the Trinity or how their stark white color reinforces the biggest event of spring: Christ’s resurrection. But they didn’t. I see this now. As a young girl, my only encouragement was filling an ice cream bucket with these lovely flowers.

I’ve tried several times to establish trillium in flowerbed. (Yes, I make sure and buy the plants so it is all legit and such.) But I’ve had very limited success. Their beauty and grandeur just aren’t that easy to replicate. Maybe this is another reason why when I see many blooming in the same spot, I’m overwhelmed with joy.

I do not believe the scripture passage from Exodus is referring to trillium. It speaks of almond flowers. If you keep reading this passage, you’ll discover the flowers are used for decoration; much like we use flowers today. As I get a little more mature, I recognize a few things that are very important to me. Like really good napkins. Fresh flowers in the house. I don’t have fresh flowers ALL the time but I really strive to do this. Why? Because fresh flowers bring me joy. They draw me back to carrying an ice cream bucket through the woods and gathering trillium. This maybe a very simply joy, but a deeply meaningful one personally. And for this, I praise

Lord God – Thank you for the arrival of spring and all the joys that are a part of it. Whether it be flowers, green grass or some other indicator that spring has arrive, may this beauty remind us of you as our Creator. Amen.



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