It Really Is the Little Things

Folks often say, “It’s the little things that count.” They are right.

After spending more than two-and-a-half months in the hospital, it’s the little things that bring me unspeakable joy; getting to take a shower for the first time instead of a sponge bath because the dressing is finally off my wound; feeling the atmosphere God created on my face instead of the manmade unnatural hospital air that dries out skin; getting to freely wash my hair; cooking something I will enjoy eating…the little things.

After I recovered enough from my second hip replacement surgery (to remove the original hip replacement and clean it out because it had become infected) to get up out of bed and wash myself—I still wasn’t allowed to wash my hair. I was restricted to sponge baths because I had a machine (several during the months) hanging around my neck that sucked poison out of my wound. I couldn’t get it wet. I can’t stand it when my hair is dirty—and after two weeks of not being allowed to wash my hair I took a page out of my hero author and friend Val Poore’s book and washed my hair in the basin after I washed myself. I reminded myself of Val’s ingenuity and how she had constructed a little shower on her barge. She has to sit down under it and the water supply is limited. I’m no Val Poore, but I’ve learned from her remarkable books and the basin trick worked until I finally defied the “no washing hair in the sink because of covid” rule and washed it in the sink when I knew the nurses would be out of the room for a while. That rule made no sense whatsoever; the nurses were in the room handling patients who had covid—we all did even though I was the only one who did NOT have two injections and a booster—and after handling covid patients they washed their hands in the same sink I wanted to use to wash my hair.

After I got home, cooking was a bit of a challenge at first—not the actual cooking—but the standing long enough to cook. My right hip is still weak from two invasive surgeries and I’m missing a part of the back of my leg that used to be there—so I have a strange dip and crease along the wound.

They served “spaghetti” in the hospital. It had no meat in it. The overcooked pasta had been introduced to a splash of tomato sauce—but they didn’t even get close enough to shake hands apparently, because there was no spaghetti sauce on the spaghetti. So the first thing I cooked when I got home—was a copious amount of meatballs to put into the generous sauce I made with an appetizing amount of green peppers, onions, and carrots. Then I not only introduced the pasta to the sauce—I made sure they got really well acquainted! It’s the little things.

‘There are four things which are little on the earth, but they are exceedingly wise: the ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their food in the summer; the rock badgers are a feeble folk, yet they make their homes in the crags; the locusts have no king, yet they all advance in ranks; the spider skillfully grasps with its hands, and is the kings’ palaces.” Proverbs 30:24.

Never forget the little things. Stephanie Parker McKean: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle

Little Things

Because I was born in Texas, I grew up with the axiom that everything in Texas is bigger. I believed it.

At that time, Texas was the largest state in the U.S. When President Eisenhower signed a proclamation admitting Alaska to the U.S. in 1959, replacing Texas as the biggest state—I actually cried. I fiercely told family and friends that when all the ice melted in Alaska, Texas would be the biggest state again. And I believed that too.

Some things that are bigger are better—like the bigger slice of chocolate cake and the bigger chocolate candy bar. As I’ve grown older, I’ve come to appreciate bigger pullovers and T-shirts. Or perhaps I need them? And I’ve always preferred bigger dogs.

But sometimes it’s the little things that make us smile. Here in Scotland with unending grey skies and the colors of summer falling like the constant mist and rain and bleeding away into memories—it was a small thing that made me smile. One purple clover bloom in a vast green sea of grass.

I hate cold. I hate getting cold. I hate winter. Snow holds no appeal to me no matter how much ugly and blight it paints out of sight with virgin whiteness. Snow is cold. I hate cold.

So even with cold stealing over the land like a furry nighttime thief, the one purple bloom made me smile.

Isn’t it marvelous that a great and Mighty God like ours—a God who stretched out the vastness of space, created the weightiness of Earth and the planets and made Texas…took time to make little things as well. Tiny insects, sugar gliders, finger monkeys, pygmy possums, hummingbirds, starfish, seahorses, hedgehogs, hummingbirds, chameleons, turtles—and a host of other things that would take days to list. And fragile, colorful flowers. Even a small purple bloom.

“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, what is man that You are mindful of him?” (Psalm 8:3)

And what is a little purple bloom that coaxes smiles on a wet and rainy day? Stephanie Parker McKean: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle

It’s the Little Things


People celebrate big events in life; the acquisition of a new car or a new home, a pay raise, a vacation. But it’s the small things in life that count.

Feeling your nose starting to run and reaching into your pocket—and yes! You have a tissue.

Taking a photo of something unique or important that you will never see again—and the picture turns out.

Dropping a lid on the floor and it lands the right way up.

Getting an unexpected extra hour of sleep in the morning and not being late for anything.

Having a flurry of soap bubbles rush up from the sink when you wash dishes.

Finding the keys in the first coat pocket you search.

Discovering a beautiful flower blooming in a rock wall and knowing that—with God’s help—you can overcome your problems.

New homes age, new vehicles get dents, pay raises are spent, vacations end. But I always smile when the lid lands the right way on the floor, or when brightly colored soap bubbles burst into the air when I’m washing dishes.

Little things. It’s the little things in life that count.

hard places