Whoever has skin, let them touch.
Whoever has mouths, let them taste.
Whoever has eyes, let them see.
Whoever has nostrils, let them smell.
Whoever has ears, let them hear.

Whoever has skin, let them be touched.
Whoever has mouths, let them speak.
Whoever has eyes, let them be seen.
Whoever has nostrils, let them be savored.
Whoever has ears, let them be heard.

Five Senses: sunlight and bottles

Touch: The shirt I’m wearing air dried soon after being washed. And it’s stiff. I stopped drying my shirts a while back because they kept shrinking and it bothers me to wear shirts that are too small. I was thinking the other day about how I really don’t care about name brands of clothes. I just want stuff that will last and that I personally like. I don’t really care what brand of clothing it is. But when I hang out with other people, they are constantly giving each other compliments on each other’s clothing – whether it’s the 2016 edition of some Under Armour or the 2017. I just like t-shirts and zip-up sweatshirts and jeans. I couldn’t care less about name brands or what year a certain line of sweaters came out. I just don’t want to stand out for being cool or for being not cool. 

Taste: I have the lingering taste of coffee in my mouth. I had a bowl of cereal this morning, but I feel like I want something more. I have been trying to be better about what I’ve been eating, but I’ve been incredibly inconsistent. But as the weather gets warmer and I’m outside more, I realize more and more how much I want to just be in better shape. How I want to lose weight. It’s just going to mean that I watch what I eat for lunch. That’s when I am more likely to eat junk fast food and things.

Sarah is currently going grocery shopping for the week and she was just commenting on how she’s glad that I am not picky about what we eat. And I’m not. I really like the fact that we have teenage girls to help with the prep, the cooking, and cleaning. I pretty much enjoy any meal we have. I try to always remain grateful for the food we eat. I love having such a variety of foods all the time. 

See: The sun is shining. And it’s so nice. Warm sun pouring through the windows. Light and shadows thrown around the dining room and our cactus room brings such peace to me. We’ve slowly been trying to make our apartment into a warm home. We have slowly been getting more and more decorations for the house. House plants, cacti, art. Sarah just got some long bottles and a long wooden box for a centerpiece. Today she’s getting some flowers to put in it. I really like how things have slowly been coming around. 

Smell: I breathe in today a deep breath. I had a full weekend and Monday. My sister and her husband were in town for the weekend. I hung out with them on Sunday evening, eating dinner with them. They came and visited Boys Town for the first time for a few hours. Yesterday was my mom’s birthday, and so we went to visit her at her home for a little bit and then we went out for ice cream and then to the library. 

Hear: Right now the house is quiet with no kids. No TV. No teenagers. Just me. The refrigerator is going, and there’s the click of the coffee maker. I hear some construction trucks outside somewhere on campus. There’s always projects being worked on, which I’m thankful for. I love our campus. 

Emotion: Happy. I’m feeling pretty good today. With the sun shining, getting some alone time, and having prom over with (it was last Friday), things have slowed down just for a moment. 

Five Senses: in the cactus room

Touch: There’s cool air coming in from the vent above me. I feel it on my skin. It makes me long for spring to finally get here and stay here. We’ve had really dark and gloomy days these past couple weeks, and it makes it so we can’t send the kids outside to play on the playground. It makes our days off harder too because then we’re stuck inside with not much to do. I look forward to feeling the sun on my skin and the cool breeze of the spring air. My favorite kind of weather is a day with lots of warm sunlight, but with a cool steady breeze.

Taste: I’m drinking coffee right now, and it actually tastes pretty good overall. Usually the morning coffee from the coffee maker isn’t very good. But I think it’s very much influenced by what I ate for breakfast and how tired I am. I had some cinnamon toast crunch this morning, which is pretty much the unanimous favorite cereal of the girls, and I think the cinnamon taste left my mouth prepped and ready to go for whatever kind of garbage coffee I might put into my body.

See: Right now I am sitting in the room that has the most light. It has the most life. It is the most welcoming room in our home. In front of three large windows we have a ledge with all sorts of succulents and cacti. I love this room. It brings me peace.

While I say that though I read and saw a video of some horrible atrocities in Syria with people being gassed and killed by their own government. Again. It’s just the worst thing. And I just don’t know how to process it. My brain and heart are too full to know how to even address it. That’s not even to mention trying to figure out how I categorize events like these theologically.

I know that people I respect also struggle to know what to do with events like this too:

Smell: Although I don’t smell anything specific right now, I am reminded that I can take a moment to breathe in a long, slow breath. To stop and reflect. I am sitting in the middle of the United States of America. I’m safe. How greatly has that shaped my perceptions about God, the Bible, and my faith? What would my faith look right now if I were in Syria?

Hear: The house is quiet. Micah is at school. Ezra is in the back with Sarah. I am sitting alone and I am enjoying this time. I hear trucks pass out the window from time to time, but otherwise it is very quiet.

Emotion: Right now I am feeling tender. I am not particularly happy, nor am I particularly sad. I’m sensitive. News stories about Trump, North Korea, Syria, etc. easily sway my mood and my heart right now.

After thinking for a while and looking at resources on suffering and things, I saw this great video about the book of Job.

Five Senses: at the end of the table

Touch: The air feels cooler than normal in the home. I haven’t had a shower in a couple days. I was too busy yesterday, and by the time I had time last night I just wanted to get into bed. So today I feel kind of gross. I’ll probably take a shower here soon.

Taste: I’ve been up since 5:00 am today because the boys got up and refused to go back to sleep. I didn’t want to put one kid in our room with Sarah while I stayed in. We often will do that to see if we can sneak out a few more minutes of sleep. But Sarah was up late last night, and I didn’t think Micah or Ezra would actually go back to sleep if I put one of them in there with her. Sarah sleeps through practically anything, so that would mean whichever kid I would put in there would start getting into all sorts of things in our bedroom while she slept. So I just tried to convince the kids to go back to sleep, but the refused. So right now I’m tasting my second cup of automatic drip folders coffee. These days I don’t really care how my coffee tastes. Just as long as it isn’t burnt and it has caffeine. I need it a lot more these days.

See: Briefly this morning there was some sunlight that came through the windows. It’s been a pretty dark and gloomy week and a half or so with lots of clouds, rain, cooler temps, and little to no sunlight. I’ve found that multiple days without sunlight makes me feel quite lethargic. I love seeing rays of sunlight poor through the windows and onto the table and on the various plants we have throughout the dining room and our cactus room.

Smell: Ezra was just standing behind me, and clearly he had a dirty diaper. He still isn’t potty trained. And I keep wondering if we’re kind of failing him in that regard. He can go potty when we really prompt him, but then he had a few days where he struggled to go potty and needed help clearing out his system (without going in more detail). Thankfully Sarah took him and changed his diaper for me.

Hear: The TV is on behind me. Ezra was watching it for a little while, and then he left. So there’s just kids television playing behind me filling the home with unnecessary noise. Every once and a while I hear the click of the heater on the coffee maker, reminding me that there’s still more gross coffee should I need a third cup.

Emotion: Frustrated. This morning I lost a lot of sleep. The boys got me flustered and upset. And that’s never a good start to the day. I have a men’s Bible study that I go to once a week on Tuesdays. It’s been cancelled the last couple weeks. Today I was looking forward to going, but one of our girls was getting out of our intervention and assessment home and Sarah needed to attend a meeting for her that lasted the exact time that Bible study occurs. When I miss events like this, I get upset. Another thing that’s frustrated me about today. Hopefully the day will get better.