1. Another semester is behind me! I went in to write the final essay and I think I did pretty well. I was so, so happy to walk out that door!
2. When I got to my car, I turned my phone back on. It had been off since last night's class. I had a text, and I hardly ever get texts. Even stranger, it was from Dylan. He'd sent it late, late last night, his last night at EFY. "I love you Mom," it said. "You're so awesome." I just stared at it in disbelief. This is my boy who hasn't even returned my frequent "I love yous" with a "me too" in a very long time. And here he was, late at night, after a week of EFY, feeling enough love for me that he thought to text me and tell me. They were the sweetest words I'd heard in a long time, and my heart swelled with love for him and gratitude for my Heavenly Father, who is surely watching over my son in ways I cannot yet even appreciate. I smiled and cried the whole drive home. I had a feeling come over me that EFY had been the right thing to do, the right place for him to be. He had had fun, and was happy. He had felt something. I am so grateful. And I sure love that kid.
3. I went out to do my hour of weeding this afternoon after I got home from class. It was hot, and my back hurt from all the bending. I kept my mind busy in prayer and sweet thoughts about my children and the experiences they are having in life, and committed to just keep weeding, just keep weeding, until my hour was up. Then the coolest thing happened. A Western Scrub Jay landed on the fence and looked at me. It had been a long time since I'd seen this beautiful blue bird around the neighborhood, and they are so brilliantly arrayed it always takes my breath away to see them. I started to talk to him. You know, the usual friendly bird chit-chat: "Hey fella! What are you doing here? You came to watch me? Do you know how beautiful you are?" He hopped down off the fence and started hopping toward me. I didn't move, a little shocked by how comfortable he seemed to be. He got about two feet from me, picked up a giant grub in his beak, and sat there for a minute before flying up into the tree across the street. But then he came back! As I was pulling these deep weeds, I was also unearthing tasty fat grubs from the soil. He liked our partnership, and he hung out with me for about 20 minutes, quite at ease with my presence as I digged and he scooped up the treasure. It was such a privilege to have him near me, cocking his head from side to side, eyeing me, hopping from spot to spot as I pulled weeds. It really made the last of my work much more enjoyable seeing as my efforts were feeding this little creature.