Sunday, April 26, 2015

"It's the Simple Things"

There's a song at the beginning of one of the short Mickey Mouse cartoons from the 1950s ("The Simple Things") with a line that goes like this...

It's the simple things that give my heart its wings.

The past few weeks haven't been the easiest, with the gravity of life pulling down and the winds of heartache blowing through the days, but my heart has been given wings by some of the sweetest and simplest things.

Seeing the room where my grandpa stayed during his last week on earth. 

He had a beautiful view outside his window, reminiscent of his own home, and beautiful care from both my mother and uncle's steadfast company and the kind hospice and care-home workers who made him as comfortable as they could. The way everyone fought for my grandpa - to give him the best possible treatment and going-home experience - touches my heart.

Watching my grandpa's memorial service come together. 

His heart of service, his kindness to others, his big smile for all, his devotion to his one true love and his family, and the faith that meant everything to him - it all was so evident in every part of our celebration of his life.

African violets and a lovely evening on the coast. 

My coworkers in marketing got together and had a basket of beautiful African violets sent to me at work after they heard about my grandpa passing away. I was incredibly blessed by their thoughtfulness and care.

As for the book pictured here, I returned home by way of the coast and enjoyed a delicious dinner and some shopping in Florence's (Oregon) Old Town. One of the items I picked up  in a cute little shop was this "Reading Journal for Book Lovers."

Returning to the red-carpet treatment. 

One coffee break, for some random reason, my coworkers and I discussed how I should have a red carpet leading to my cubicle, curtains around the opening, a body guard, white tiger, and whatnot. (The imaginings got a little carried away. :)) 

When I returned to work after my long weekend away, I discovered a "red carpet" leading to my cubicle, a tree creating some ambiance, and a "white tiger" gracing my chair. (Not to mention the fact that my cubicle had been "magnet-bombed" and the books and knick-knacks playfully disorganized...but the bag of chocolate made up for that!)

* * *

You can't help but feel loved with a red carpet and chocolates - and a new nickname like "White Tiger."

And your heart can't help but fly when God showers you with love through things like...
  • unexpected messages from blogging friends saying they felt prompted to pray for you,
  • flowers and cards from coworkers who are true friends beyond the office,
  • dinners and conversations and moments with family that help bring healing, and
  • a million other simple things from movie-watching to agate-hunting, texts and phone calls, solitary drives and the power of fond memories.
These things aren't really that small - and certainly their impact is far from simple. Listing them here, remembering all the ways God has provided for me and my family in just these past few weeks, is eye-opening. 

My heart has wings, indeed.
He hath made his wonderful works to be remembered: the Lᴏʀᴅ is gracious and full of compassion. ~ Psalm 111:4


Ariel Wilson said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, friend! Just remember he is no longer suffering. I'll be praying for you!

Amber Stokes said...


Thank you! While it's never easy losing a loved one, knowing that he's no longer suffering and is now with the Lord and my grandma made his passing much easier to bear and brings great comfort. I appreciate your prayers!


P.S. It's awesome to see you around the blogosphere again. :) Hope you are doing well - and thank you for taking the time to comment!

Rissi said...

What a lovely, honoring post to your grandpa, Amber. Such a heartfelt and well written blog post. Thanks for sharing.

Thinking of you and your family. :)

Bluerose said...

Such a bittersweet post! I'm sorry about your grandpa. ((hugs and prayers))

I'm glad you have such sweet co-workers! That warms my heart for you. :)

Amber Stokes said...


That's so kind of you to say, dear friend! I could say so much more about my grandpa - his life was so well-lived, and I'm so grateful I had the chance to grow up knowing and loving him. ♥

Thank you for your thoughtfulness!


Amber Stokes said...


Thank you so much for those hugs and prayers! *Hugs back*

And yes, I'm so very blessed to work with the wonderful people in my department, and at Harvest House in general. I'm grateful for the friendships I've made and the chance to get to know and spend time with my coworkers! They're such a fun group. :)

So glad you stopped by. :) Hope all is well with you and yours!


Cindy V said...

So beautifully written, Amber, my adopted Niece . . . and so very true!!

Amber Stokes said...

Aunt Cindy,

Aw, thank you so much! I'm grateful you stopped by. :)

I'm overwhelmed by the ways God reaches out to us...and how sadly easy it is to overlook His gestures of grace or dismiss them. I know I need to pause more often to marvel at the beautiful blessings He gives, and to praise Him for them.


Meagan Davenport said...

Amber - so sorry to hear about your grandfather! <3 Praying for you and your family during this time!

Miranda A. Uyeh said...

Once again, I'm truly sorry for your loss. Will continue to pray for you. I'm so glad God blessed you with all that love. My heart goes out to you. <3

~ Miranda

Kara said...

Oh Amber! I am so sorry. Life's been busy for me in the last month and I hadn't made much connection to realize what has been going on. Grandparents are true treasures and so hard to say goodbye to. My thoughts and prayers are with you, my dearest friend! I hope our watch-along helped bring a little cheer into your weekend last Saturday. *bear hugs* *squeezes tight for a long time*

Amber Stokes said...


Thank you so much for your prayers! ♥


Amber Stokes said...


It meant so much that you reached out to me, friend, and that God put it on your heart to do so. Thank you so much for your continued prayers and your thoughtfulness! I'm blessed to know you. ♥


Amber Stokes said...


Please don't feel bad at all! Life has been busy for me, too - does it feel like life just keeps getting more and more hectic/distracting all the time? It's not so much that I always have big things to do, but that I let the little, unimportant things steal my attention. I need to prioritize better... *sigh*

Anyway, sorry for the tangent! Yes, grandparents are treasures, indeed, and I was so blessed to get to grow up knowing my mom's parents and spending so much time with them. I love them dearly. It's hard to say goodbye, but it's comforting to know that it's not goodbye forever.

Our watch-along definitely brought me cheer, especially as I was resting up and trying to get rid of that cold. I always enjoy our watch-alongs and Twitter convos, friend! :) Thank you so much for your prayers and those bear hugs. *Hugs back* *Holds on tightly*