It is Monday … Actually it is MONDAY NIGHT. Funny thing, I had envisioned a quiet day at home as our Mondays often are, catching up after the weekend – but apparently, some days aren’t meant to be quiet!! Let’s just say it was an INTERESTING day ….SO joining Sandra later in the day than intended!
As I look outside my window:::
It is about 49° right now (with a high of 54° today) … but sadly, it is supposed to get colder and colder again this week … with possible snow flurries on Friday?!?!?! Ugh, I guess it is still WINTER!
Right now I am:::
Waiting for my hubby to get home with PIZZA (we have a local pizza place that offers $3.99 large pizza on Mondays!!) and with Drew who was at basketball practice until 6 p.m., preparing for a big tournament in March.
Thinking and pondering:::
How far the Lord has brought us! A year ago, my husband was in a somewhat entry-level job, starting a new career in an organization he really wanted to be a part of. He’s learned “the ropes” from the bottom up, and recently, he applied for another position, the next “grade level” up … and he was offered the job last Friday!! While most people who have been married as long as us, worked equally as hard as we have, are in much more stable financial shape, career-wise, God has led us on a somewhat backwards path to this point.
When my husband resigned his school administrator job in 2012, many people – due to the situation we were leaving – said, “God will surely bless you as you go forward.” At first, as my husband applied for some pretty lofty jobs, we thought he’d jump right in where he left off in the Army (his job prior to the school). We were really close to some great (in our opinion) jobs – interviewed several times and missed out on one great job by a technicality. However, God didn’t bless us financially, as I initially hoped … but He did indeed bless us!! The lessons we have learned on this journey here have been amazing!! That doesn’t mean I was happy about it every day – and looking back, I wouldn’t want to “do it again” – NO WAY, NO HOW (it was far too painful!!) – but I wouldn’t change the path GOD chose.
We still have a long road ahead … but I have more trust than ever that God will continue to be faithful and meet our every need.
On my bedside table:::
The Beekeeper’s Apprentice (a fiction work, not by A. Conan Doyle, about a retired Sherlock Holmes and his friendship with a young genius)
On my tv tonight:::
Nothing really … I did watch the season finale of Downton Abbey last night. And I have the DVD for Season 1, episodes 3 & 4 of CALL THE MIDWIFE, but I can’t bring myself to watch them until I get episodes 1 & 2 which I have reserved for me at the library. I have this weird need to watch things in order – though I have caught a few random episodes of Call the Midwife on PBS.
The family in various rooms: MiMi is in the bathtub with her collection of bath toys; Annie-Belle is reading (and often telling me what she is learning); Drew has disappeared into his cave; and my hubby is watching some sports. The dryer is humming along too as I try to catch up on my laundry day, which will now extend into tomorrow.
On the menu for this week:::
red beans and rice with polish sausage
something crock-pot chicken (hasn’t decided what – but I have lots of chicken br-asts in the freezer)
potato soup and home-made bread
On my to do list:::
My son and I use ting.com for our cell phone plan – and we need to get my husband switched over as he has a simple flip phone from Verizon on the simplest of calling-only plans – but we pay MORE for him than we do for Drew and I both to have a smart phone!! SO, we need to break the Verizon contract (ting picks up up to 70% of the fees to do this), and get him on board with ting. In the long run, it will be very well worth it! (Ting.com has by far the cheapest plan we’ve found. They run off the Sprint network, but don’t charge the crazy prices. For 2 moderately used smart phones (texting, calls, data), we have yet to pay more than $40 a month!! (DISCLOSURE: that is an affiliate link that you see in this paragraph.)
Happening this week:::
I am organizing a fund-raiser for St Jude Children’s Research Hospital that is launching this week!! I did this in the past for our former school, but here it is even more poignant as our superintendent’s son (who passed away from brain cancer last October) was a St. Jude patient for 5 years. There is quite a bit of paperwork involved, but I’m glad to do it. (DISCLOSURE: the link in this paragraph goes to our school’s fund-raising page.)
My simple pleasure:::
Lesson learned the past week:::
When we moved here last summer, I had just won a graphic of a Bible verse from a blog … the one I chose was portions of Matthew 22:37-39 (about the greatest commands being loving God first and your neighbor as yourself). It was one of the first things I hung up in our bedroom when we moved into our duplex.
I had this grand vision that I’d learned so many lessons about being kind and loving towards people as so many people had reached out to us during our time of transition and during Dan’s accident in 2012 and the first part of 2013. I was hoping I’d find it in myself to step outside my comfort zone more often and kind of “pay it forward”. Once we moved, however, I convinced myself that we needed some quiet, family time to recover from all that we’d been through. And I wasn’t ready to jump into any relationships full force. I wasn’t ready to “reach out” yet! And truthfully, I do believe God allowed us a time of reprieve and relative calm that we much needed.
While people at our new church were pretty nice as a whole, we were – and sort of still are – somewhat cautious as we enter a new body of believers. Slowly, we are delving into their activities and groups. When we first arrived here, several church members reached out to us – but I think over time have gotten the message that we aren’t really seeking a social life quite yet, and they have backed off on their frequent invitations.
The one person who has stayed consistently in my life and on my front doorstep has been my duplex neighbor. For the most part, she often genuinely has a need; and we’ve come to a common exchange of things like me giving her money for gas and her husband mowing our side of the “yard”. She also asked to meet with me with a weekly BIble study, which we did consistently for several weeks. She shared her testimony with me most recently, and she sure hasn’t had an easy life. They are trying to do what is right and rebuild their family, but when you have a lot of baggage in your history, it is often not easy to remain consistent and consequences follow you. The one thing she is – that I admire a lot – is resilient. When a situation knocks her down, she faces it with a positive attitude and faith.
I spent much of today helping my neighbor, from letting her just talk to me this morning to taking her to several important appointments this afternoon because they are temporarily without a vehicle. I don’t feel like it is my story to share what has happened, but it is serious and has some long-standing consequences. Driving all over town and sitting and waiting on someone with an antsy 4 year old in tow isn’t my idea of a nice, quiet Monday (thank goodness for our portable DVD player!!) … but tonight, I am satisfied that I did something well outside my comfort zone! I helped someone who can’t really repay me fully for the time I lost.
I share this not to toot my own horn for being so benevolent and kind … I’m just thankful that sometimes God seemingly FORCES an unexpected situation on me, and when I respond with a willing and open heart, He blesses me with the satisfaction that I’ve actually made GOOD USE of my time, even though I didn’t do any of the things I had hoped to do today!
Looking around the house:::
The girls have moved on to playing Lego Friends together!! I love it when that happens.
From the camera:::
Daniel took the girls on a field trip while I did taxes on Saturday – Annie-Belle was the photographer:
my friend who has recently beaten Leukemia has now been diagnosed with lung cancer. She faces surgery and chemo (again) soon.
Bible verse, Devotional:::
33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?
35 Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?
36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.