Journey with Jen: Eat, Drink, & Be Merry

There are twinkling lights all over the inside of my house right now.

In fact, the way the light plays off of my infusion bags almost makes them beautiful...


There’s something comical in the stark contrast of the Christmas tree and the sterile bags hanging from my IV pole.


That just about sums up my life in one frame. I am over here day-in and day-out clawing for almost every minute, and outside these four walls, without even a nod in my direction, time marches on. Seasons come and go so quickly without me realizing, as I sit in my climate control bubble. It can be so disconcerting to me how much I miss while in the trenches with my health, but Christmas was something that I just was not willing to let pass me by. It is my favorite holiday and I do not take for granted that my view is of IV poles and infusion bags, but that view is from the inside of my own home and not a hospital room. It is not taken for granted in the least

December 5, 2016, I went into the hospital to have a feeding tube placed. It was for all intents and purposes to be a normal outpatient procedure. If you have journeyed with Jen for long, you already know that nothing ever goes as expected. That is our normal around here.

December 6, 2016, in a bed on the second floor of the hospital in Tulsa, I set up to get out of bed and my life almost ended. The aforementioned tube, ripped through my small intestine.

Like I said, not as expected.

Multiple surgeries, many brushes with my own mortality, and basically an entire December spent in the hospital.

No— being home for Christmas is not lost on me.

But, even from the hospital, or my chair in my living room, I push to keep the focus on the real meaning of Christmas. It is not about gifts, parties, or pretty twinkly lights. No, it is about the birth of a tiny baby boy who came to save us all.

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” ‭Isaiah‬ ‭9:6‬ ‭NLT

It is easy to get caught up in the busyness and the commercialization of Christmas. Another secret Santa gift to buy, one more batch of cookies to make – if we are not careful those things can and will overtake the true meaning of Christmas from us.




On Jesus, on the manger, and on the babe in swaddling clothes who came unassumingly into this world to save us all.


Do something that FEEDS your soul this season.

Revamp your schedule to BUY some time with those you love. DRINK in the love of a God who sent His only Son to suffer, die, and to rise again because of His love for us. Be MERRY to someone who may be alone or shut in.

It’s not too late to reclaim the season for THE REASON... Our Savior. 

Merry Christmas, friends! 

May God bless you and keep you all the year through. 

XO- Jen

Contributor Jenn IMG_1265.JPG

Hi. I’m Jen-

a small town, Oklahoma girl married to a superhero. Together, we are raising a family on second chances, shiplap, and a shoestring.

I am a firm believer in grace, organization, and efficiency. I find great satisfaction in taking broken items and giving them new life, likely because that is exactly what God did for me.

I over use the word shine, exclamation points, and emojis. I cheer too loud in the stands of my kids’ activities and hug more than is socially acceptable. A natural born encourager and armchair warrior, I am learning to redefine my mission field and make the most of each day I am given.

I am chronically ill and chronically positive- not necessarily in that order. I am learning to practice perseverance over perfection and long for the day I get to see my grandparents and Jesus’ face.

Until then, I am just looking for Grace in the Grind.

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