What’s Saving My Life Right Now


Hi, friends! I thought I’d pop in today to share some positivity: here are six things that are making life better for me these days.

1. Antidepressants for my preschooler.

This past October we hit a wall with Felix’s sleep. He was nearing four years old and still not sleeping through the night — in fact, it was just getting worse. he was up 3-5 hours every night and it was taking its toll on the whole family. We were all miserable and barely functioning. So I finally took him to his pediatrician and said, “HELP.”

She looked into my bloodshot eyes and decided to prescribe him an antidepressant that causes drowsiness as a side effect. I’m about as anti-drug as you can get but I was desperate and willing to try anything. We started giving it to him every night before bed.

His sleep has improved immensely since then. He almost always sleeps until at least 4:30 am; and when he does wake up at night, he usually falls back asleep within an hour.

Everyone is happier, including Felix.

2. Respite care for my preschooler.

felix and me

In my mid-October desperation I also reached out to our family coordinator who had helped us apply for funding for respite care for Felix earlier in the year. The application had been accepted months earlier, but we’d been informed that there was an unusually long waiting period for the funding to actually kick in. Like, up to a year’s wait.

The coordinator sensed the desperation in my voice and applied for some temporary, private funding to hold us over until the government funding could take over.

So now we have funding for six hours of respite care a week. His worker picks him up to go to her house, and for six hours a week I can spend time focusing on Lydia’s homeschooling, or housecleaning, or even on myself. When he comes home I am refreshed and happy to see him. It’s been pretty glorious.

3. Crafting.

You guys have seen me take up crocheting and then knitting and then watercolour painting. And over the last year I’ve also become obsessed with calligraphy.

A week or two ago my mom asked me if I would do some hand-lettering on some wood discs she’d cut up in my dad’s shop and I happily obliged. And I was so pleased with the results I started making some for friends and then I started to offer them for sale on social media to local friends.

Before I knew it, I was getting Ben to slice up branch after branch and drill and spray my little creations as I pumped out more hand-lettered ornaments. It was kind of taking over my life. And I LOVED every minute.

I really don’t have time for this nonsense. And I only made enough money to cover costs plus a little extra so I could buy even more to my craft supplies, but it was so satisfying to be creative. Crafting just makes my life better.

I feel most like myself when I’m making beautiful things.

4. Walter Geoffrey the Frenchie.


Guys, I’m not really into pet Instagram accounts. But a few months ago I stumbled upon WalterGeoffreytheFrenchie and . . . just . . . WOW. Have you seen this guy?? Oh my goodness. He gives me life. He’s an adorable but opinionated French bulldog with an incredibly unique . . . I’m gonna say, voice? Nothing perks me up like Walter’s bizarre, one-of-a-kind screaming.

Watch this video to get a taste of his personality if you haven’t already met Walter. And then follow his Instagram. If you’re feeling down in the dumps, I promise he will cheer you up.

5. Pentatonix Christmas music.

To add to the list of things I’m not really into: Christmas music. I’m generally just not a fan.

But I love Pentatonix Christmas music. I love a cappella in general, and I specifically love the way they infuse new energy into old Christmas songs. And they have like seven Christmas albums. I will happily listen to Pentatonix all December. (I just listen to them on Spotify.) Give them a listen if you haven’t already!

6. The new local shawarma place.


Our small, rural, mostly-white town isn’t known for its cuisine. Nobody drives to our town to get dinner (although our Vietnamese restaurant has the best pho in the county). We’ve had a hard time finding a place to get takeout when we want to get dinner on a short notice, and have basically only patronized the local Vietnamese restaurant for the last decade.

But our town recently got a new shawarma place and it is the best. Since we discovered it a month ago we have been getting takeout from there on almost a weekly basis. For $15 we can get a huge shawarma plate containing enough food for both me and Ben — we each get one wrap, plus three delicious sides. It is making me so happy.

That’s about it for now! What’s been saving your life these days?

PS follow me on Instagram to see what I’m up to on a day-to-day basis!

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  1. Running a good takeout place is true ministry…especially in places where it’s rare.

    Also, SO glad you are able to get more sleep now, and respite care.

  2. This post made me so happy! I’m glad you’re getting some respite care– so important! And it sounds like the antidepressants were the right thing to do. Yay for more sleep!! I know it helps your entire family. Sending lots of love to you, and thank you for continuing to blog!

  3. Sleep! Respite care! Food! Awesome! Yay!

    Really, I’m amazed at your respite care situation. What a blessing!

    We like Pentatonix. Sometimes I like Straight No Chaser (also a cappella arrangements) even better. My 4 yo is obsessed with their 12 Days of Christmas Medley and we listen to it over and over and over.

    My husband and I have been obsessed with this local place that does kimchi fries–french fries loaded with housemade kimchi, meat, dijon mushrooms, whatever you want. It’s spicy and sour and greasy and just marvelous. We get it at least twice a month and eat it after the kids go to bed and it’s magic. Good local takeout food really is a gift.

  4. I love so much in this post! Heck, I get excited (literally) every time you post. But hooray for asking for and receiving help! Double hooray for more sleep!! Triple hooray for crafting!!! (*especially* when you don’t have time for it lol) And, final note, if I believed in past lives, I’d believe I was Middle Eastern in one of mine, such is my love of that cuisine.

  5. I’m a tad concerned about giving anti-depressants to a 3 year old. But sometimes you have to do what you have to do. Look into what he eats though. It’s amazing how food affects behavior. Be wary of artificial colors and preservatives.

    So glad you got respite care! And the worker picks him up at your house! Yay!

    I enjoy your posts.

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