Peace and Goodwill

What do you do on a January Saturday that is 60°F??!

My guess is that you head for the great outdoors!  What great weather to rake some leaves and clean up your yard … chop and stack wood for your fireplace.  Take a walk at the local park (which my kids actually did do on Friday!!) or play in the yard.

Yeh, that probably sounds good to most people, but for us, it wasn’t happening.

Instead, Daniel and I had a little date courtesy of some IHOP coupons and indulged in some amazingly fattening breakfast foods with $2.30 cups of coffee (seriously?!).  My mom gave us a book called Eat This, Not That for restaurants, and IHOP was one of the WORST offenders for high fat and cholesterol content meals!  Lots of extra butter and fats and things that will clog your arteries up so fast … but why oh why must it taste so good?!?!   Oh well, we’ve decided they are also one of the worst offenders for over-priced meals (and coffee), so we probably won’t be back there for a really long time.  After all, one of Dan’s many talents is that he can cook a pretty mean breakfast at home (I just have to clean up his mess!).

Friday was pay day for both of us – and so after paying the bills, we tabulated our spending money categories and decided we were entitled to a trip to Goodwill.   Yeh, our lives have gotten to this point where a trip to Goodwill is considered a good time.


Just a little aside here that I actually have acquaintances who refuse to shop at Goodwill, not because of the humiliation of it (there ain’t no shame in Goodwill!!), but because they say Goodwill – despite all its “we provide jobs for your community” hype – are a money making business.  They prefer thrift shops and charitable organizations run by churches as non-profits.  But anyway … I digress.  I guess my morals aren’t so high that I can’t shop at a place that offers me cheap but decent clothes for my ever-growing kids!!   And if I really dig, some pretty cool stuff for me too.

By the way, in a recent article about marketing and logos that I read, Goodwill’s little blue and white logo was mentioned.  Have you ever noticed that not only is there a half a smiley face on it – but that face is actually a “g”!?  I hadn’t …. but then again, I’m a little slow sometimes!

So, we are fortunate that our area has at least 6 (one more north of #5 on this map) Goodwills. And yesterday our travels took us north.  We hit 3 of the 6 Goodwills (and just mayyyyyyyyybeeeeeeeee got a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts because that is what fat, lazy Americans who don’t go outside on a gorgeous, sunny Saturday do!!).


Our Goodwill shopping was a success.  My husband got some books (not so sure I’m glad he continues to collect books as our house is full of them, and we have an entire storage shed full of them!!) – but it is a cheap hobby that keeps him off the golf course (ha … not that he’s ever had an interest in golfing!).

He and our son got some pants, MiMi got a Strawberry Shortcake nightgown and a dress up dress (big time SCORE!) and a pair of next-to-new school shoes … and I got 2 shirts which were tags of the month (which means they were 50% off!).  Part of the fun is having the time to dig through the racks.  You never know what you’ll find.

Last night our Goodwill experience led me down this weird path of thinking … I was remembering a time – many, many years ago –  when Goodwill or thrift store shopping wasn’t even a part of our routine, not even on the radar. Now it is kind of a necessity!  And it’s cheap entertainment.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen.  But it’s all good.  There is something satisfying about being frugal, even though I’ll admit I am far from frugal by nature and would much rather shop at Target (which by they way was offering 20% off all clearance clothing, and I scored some super comfy jammies there on Friday!) or a department store.

And now, having updated our budget, I started pondering how we got to where we are!  Not just financially – but all the ironies of how a girl from Germany got stuck in the middle of America!!?  🙂  It hasn’t been a bad “stuck” overall, but we really have no hope of ever leaving this part of the country.  We dream about just moving wherever Daniel’s VA “career” will take him after the big kids graduate from high school, but that would require a great deal of God’s direction.  And some gumption on Daniel’s part … which I’m not sure he possesses any more.

And then there is that whole question of WHAT IS MY PURPOSE here right now??  Am I just supposed to work, pay off our debt, raise the kids, and survive??  In many ways I am ok with my quiet life – we don’t have many friends here, we don’t really do much at our church outside of our little Sunday evening kids’ class and the choir and youth group.  We aren’t an integral part of anything … and really, that is on purpose.  We are still resting and healing from prior experiences.  But are we falling into uselessness??!

I’ve heard it said often – there are those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who WONDER what happened!  I think I am part of the wondering what happened crowd right now!!

I sometimes wonder why God would allow me to be able to speak German when I live among folks who only speak Arkansan!?  I even went so far as to google the German department at the University of Arkansas … and I wonder about getting involved – they have a weekly meeting of people who want to converse in German for a few hours.  The professors are offering trips to Germany and studies abroad.  But that ship has sailed for me.

I am a mother and a wife right now – #1 priority.  I hope and pray that some day I will again have some way to USE my German-speaking skills.  Even when we lived in Missouri, I spent at least 4 years teaching German to high schoolers.  Right now, I do converse with a few elderly relatives in Germany via email … but otherwise, I do nothing with my German language.

I would hate to lose this ability … and yet, I lack the time to do anything!  I want desperately to teach my children German … and “they” say if something is important to you, you’ll make time for it.  But try as we might, our attempts to sit down and do German classes have fallen by the way side.  Perhaps we need to attempt it again … and on the next Saturday when it is 60°F, or for that matter, 20°F, perhaps we just need to sit down and TALK GERMAN!

Anyway … that is my brain dump for they day.

Apparently I’m still working on the ACCEPTANCE part of my “word of they year” for 2015.


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7 Responses to Peace and Goodwill

  1. Pingback: Hausfrau Housekeeping | An Ordinary Hausfrau

  2. Rebecca D says:

    I feel like my life revolves around cycles of seasons of dropping off donations to the Goodwill then seasons of shopping there… Funny I never thought of that before!

  3. babstig says:

    Tutor German!!!!
    $$$ and practice! Make fliers! Take to the colleges!
    Why have we not thought of this score?!?!
    Your brilliant!

    Sent from my iPad

  4. melanie says:

    You don’t have to do BIG things to be smack-dab in the middle of God’s will ~ Keep on keepin on, my friend. {and remember rest is good for healing and refreshing}
    Spending a Saturday Good Will hopping with your family sounds like a good day! 🙂

  5. charla says:

    Love this! As always, thanks for sharing your heart.

  6. Tanya says:

    Totally cool about the Goodwill logo (never saw that before……..I do know about the FedEx arrow),
    and generally I prefer the rescue ministry thrift store because of the whole Goodwill issue (the KARM thrift store is kept cleaner and more organized anyway). Garage sale shopping and thrift store shopping is so much more exciting to me. I am pretty much ruined on all retail shopping (aside from Target and Ross) when I know if I can bide my time I will find what I need at a garage sale for just a fraction of the cost. :o)
    I hope that you can find your niche and thrive! (have you heard this song??) We were meant to have life and have it more abundantly. Hang in there!

    • I haven’t heard the song (you’ll have to tell me who sings it)…and I wish abundant life didn’t feel so elusive sometimes.  I want to, need to try to choose joy more often.  🙂

      Sent from my Samsung Epic™ 4G TouchAn Ordinary Hausfrau wrote:

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