Surrender 45: Being Love

Today was Valentine’s Day, a time traditionally set aside to express love to the sweethearts in our lives. My theme for this day was about being love. I thought about the ways that I care for myself, which I’ll share another time. Primarily I expressed love and joy to my family today. 


I created Valentine’s Day gift bags for the grandkids, and presented the adult kids with bags of peanut brittle, made with love from Papa Bob’s recipe. Yes, peanut brittle is typically considered a  Christmas treat, however, I’m anything but typical. I declared it a Valentine candy.  

Greg joined me in making deliveries to each household. We had a fun afternoon chatting as we drove, appreciating our remarkable kids and our adorable grandchildren, finding much to be grateful for. I am thankful for Greg, and his willingness to help out and to chauffeur me around. 

First stop was to see granddaughter Aubrey, who was with her mommy and little brother AJ this weekend. The kids immediately swapped stuffed animals, which was perfectly fine, especially since they were in agreement about the trade! AJ calls me Yaya too, which I adore, and this cute little boy makes me laugh with his charming ways! Brittany and the kids very sweetly gave Greg and me boxes of candy to take with us. 

I appreciate Brittany and the connection we continue to share. She keeps me updated about events going on when Aubrey is with her and let’s me know how she and the kids are doing. Caring for one another is so much bigger than how relationships are defined. Brittany and AJ will always be family. Off we went, to continue deliveries, after hugs and “I love you’s”.


Next on the list of stops was daughter Adriel and her fiancĂ© Nate. Adriel worked last night and had not been up for long. She and Nate were preparing to get outside for a bit, while the temps were in the 50’s and the sun was shining. We visited briefly and I loved on the “granddogs” and “grandcats”, who are all as sweet as can be. 

I appreciate these two animal loving, hard working, soulful young adults who plan to marry this fall. They care for one another and for others. They care for themselves too, being mindful of their health and fitness. After hugs and “I love you’s”, off we went to Carl Junction. 


Daughter Elissa, son-in-law Josh and grandson Jonathan were having a relaxing day at home, enjoying hot drinks and playing games. Elissa was also perusing Pinterest for inspiration. We had a running joke all day with Elissa about the winter storm. It never materialized, in spite of a winter weather advisory. That didn’t deter us in the least from talking as if it had. Imagination is a wonderful thing, and my family and I are blessed with an abundance of it. 

I appreciate Elissa’s and Josh’s quick wits and obvious enjoyment of each other and life. Jonathan and Dayan, who was with his dad this weekend, possess the same keen sense of humor and love of fun. After laughter and playful teasing, hugs and “I love you’s”, we headed to Carthage. 

Son Nate was still working, so we stopped by the house to catch grandsons Joey and Oliver before they left to go to their dad’s. I got to chat with them as they sorted through their gift bags and look at the clever M&M’s they received from their mom and Nate this morning. The candies, in their favorite colors, have the kids’ names on them and expressions of love. Aubrey’s stash is waiting for her in her room. Such a creative idea! 

We met Nate at the police station, where Megan joined us after dropping the boys off. I got to see my son’s new office. We enjoyed chatting and hearing more about Nate’s recent birthday celebrations. I appreciate Nate and Megan as they parent their active, growing kids well and carve out time from their busy schedules to spend quality time together. I’ve seen them navigate through challenging situations, beyond their control, with grace and a deep love for each other that sustains them. After a time of catching up, watching the kids’ birthday video for Nate, hugs and “I love you’s”, we headed back toward Joplin. 

I missed getting to see Dayan this afternoon, after having the opportunity to see everyone else. We communicated by text earlier in the day, since he’s with his dad, stepmom, and younger siblings all weekend. 

Greg made the suggestion that Dayan and I use the FaceTime feature on our iPhones to have a chat. That was a great idea! In a few moments, Dayan was visible on my phone, showing us the homework he was working on and making us laugh with a view of the lamp he was using in his room, a replica of the leg lamp from Christmas Story. Papa told a joke and I filled Dayan in on our afternoon and evening of deliveries. I appreciate Dayan’s flexibility and that he took time from his studies to talk. It brought joy to my heart to see him and talk to him face to face, and made the day feel complete. 


What a wonderful day, celebrating with my family, being love, and being loved on. I am so deeply grateful for each person, and the gifts of themselves that they bring to our family and to the world. 

“Every one of us has inside of us the innate power to heal and help another through the impact of our love.” Deeya 

That’s the amazing power of being love.