Saturday, July 31, 2010

P.S.

ONE MORE WEEK and Flash will be home!!

All I can say is THANK GOODNESS!!

Blessed

I was picking up the clutter on my bathroom counter, which mainly consists of putting hair ties and clips away in the cabinet and hanging necklaces up when I paused for a moment to be grateful. My dad made me a beautiful necklace holder last year and even came up to intall it for me. It's not overly complicated and has been easily taken for granted this past year, but I paused to appreciate how nice it is to just hang my necklaces up now and not sort through a tangled mess of them.

I came down stairs and turned off the under-cabinet light that I leave on while I sleep. Again, I had to stop and smile and think of Dad, who took it upon himself to remedy the problem of poor lighting left by the previous homeowners and spent hours working through a beautiful solution for me.

I put away some dishes from the previous night and noticed the trash was full. I carried the bag out the garage and stood to admire the potting table he made this spring. While I love having a place for my flower pots and tools, I love the memory of him working with Flash to build this for me. The act itself means as much, if not more than the product they created together.

Before I came back in, I picked up the hose and watered the plants on the deck. The spigot only works because my dad, Bear and Jules spent time trying to figure out why I didn't get much water pressure and finally installing new spigots outside for me. They work wonderfully now, and have made gardening so much easier for me all summer long.

When I came back inside, I sat in the living room to check my email, feet propped up on the coffee table Dad built. End tables of his creation sit on either side of the sofa and around the room are plant stands built by his hands. There are bookshelves and a headboard in Flash's room a hope chest upstairs, and shelves still waiting to be hung that he has crafted over the years with love to help make first my childhood room, then my dorm room and eventually my house a home.

I am full of gratitude, today, Dad. Not just for the gifts you create for me, but for the countless hours of thought, planning and craftsmanship that has gone into each one. I love not only the functionality of each piece, but the time and energy that you poured into each one.

I love you, too.
Going out to watch the game with friends only to have the fun friends ditch and go elsewhere: Frustrating.

Watching the Red Sox lose to the Tigers by one run when they had 2 men on in the bottom of the 9th: Frustrating.

Staying up till 4am talking to a boy who not only makes you laugh about the 'wussification of America' but proves he'll have no part in it by kissing you with confidence at the end of the evening: Priceless.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Leavin' the Light On

Two cats, one dog and no one was suspicious.

I had the TV on (What?! I know, I don't normally ever watch TV, but Flash is gone and it's just too darn quiet in the house!) or I would have noticed the sound sooner. It finally got to where I had to mute the TV as it just sounded far too close by to be a neighbor, but I couldn't place the sound. It's one of those slow-motion moments in your life, when you mute the TV, turn your head thinking the sound is coming from outside the window and realize....it's coming from....the lamp.

I have an upright lamp in the corner of my living room and it didn't take but one super-slow-mo-moment to realize there was a CREATURE in the lamp. Yeah. One split-second view of feet in a shadow and I very quickly realized this wasn't a bug.

The lamp was off, I rarely even use it. And now there's a creature. And the creature is trying to escape.

I thought over my options. 1) cover the lamp. Let the thing die and then deal with it. Sounded like a great idea to me. Dead creatures in the house are much better for me to deal with than live ones. 2) take the lamp outside. Great idea, but what if jostling the lamp causes the creature to secure its footing and it JUMPS OUT AT ME. Yeah, #2 was not really an option. 3) get someone else to take the lamp outside. Ahhh, great idea!

I called Jules. I swear it's moments like these that should make her appreciate her husband. I think all it does is provide her with fodder for years. In between offering me bits of advice (none of which did I especially like - especially the "get-close-enough-to-put-a-pillowcase-over-the-lamp idea) I swear I could hear her laughing at me. I finally said I was going to find someone to come save me. While Jules would love to be helpful (read that: she'd love to volunteer Bear to save me) she lives 30 minutes from me.

I called six friends from church. NO ONE WAS HOME.

I saw a neighbor out in their lawn. I shut Eli in Flash's room and headed out to my neighbor's.

Me to neighbor I've never met: "Hi! Um, can I ask a favor?"

Neighbor: "Um, sure?"

Me: "Um, yeah. See, I have some sort of a critter in an upright lamp in my living room, and I'm really kind of freaked out by the whole thing. Could you come help me remove it?"

Now, I have to interject how unfair this really was of me. Guy standing innocently standing in his lawn with his wife and I walk up and put him in a spot where to say no means we're all going to think you're a wuss. He comes over. At this point, I've put the pizza board over the lamp (if I had returned to find the creature OUT of the lamp, I would have had to sell my house and move that instant). He picks up the lamp, holds the board in place and carries it to the front lawn for me. (I was courteous enough to hold the cord and open the door as well as to warn the man that if for some reason the creature escaped, I would let out a blood-curdling scream. Just so he was aware.)

The MOMENT the lamp is out in the daylight it's very easy to see this winged creature trying to claw its way out of my lamp. "It's a bat!" I yelp. I know, Captian Obvious Award goes to me, but seriously, this confirmation is NOT reassuring. While clearly remarkably unlikely, a frog I could deal with. A bat? NO NO NO NO NO.

We set the lamp on the lawn and he goes to get something to fetch the bat out with (I really don't think this part amused him at all. But he did put on his brave face and make an attempt to be my temporary hero). I am struck by a huge pang of guilt. I have had all the shots for rabies. If anyone should be reaching into a light to get a stupid wayward bat, it should be me. If this 2eighbor gets bitten by the bat, I will never forgive myself. However, while he was next door fetching his bat-removal gear, the bat climbed up and flew out and I did, very nearly scream. But I can deal with bats outside. It's flying things INside that I can.not.deal.with.

I profusely thanked my neighbor and willl be baking cookies tomorrow to further express my extreme gratitude. I called Jules and told her the creature issue was resolved. George was disappointed that he didn't get to come see it. I said he could move in until Flash got back home. She did her best to convince me it was a fluke, but I have to admit, she wasn't all that convincing.

Just to be safe, I think I'll sleep with a light on. That is, after I get done revising my wish-list for a husband. Item #417: must deal with all rodents. God-speed, wherever you are husband o' mine, God-speed.

Friday, July 09, 2010

For Hillary's Sake

(and it's not lost on me that you of all people are the one who doesn't know this yet - )

The big news is that I am officially a third grade teacher.

I will have my very own classroom this fall in the district I've been working in the past couple of years.

I couldn't be more excited, anxious, nervous, thrilled or stressed! LOL

This road has been a long, circuitious route to this point, 17 years after I graduated with a degree in Elementary Education, but I wouldn't trade my years at home with Flash or my work experience for anything.

(So bring on the advice, Hillary!)

Weeds

I've been watering the weeds.

My front flower bed has been all but forgotten - the middle child of my lawn. Hand-me-down plants that didn't seem to go anywhere else ended up here, weeded only once the garden has been carefully tended to and the lawn precisely mowed, I get to this flower bed once upon a never. But with all good intentions, I water it from time to time thinking I'll get the ground all soft and the next day I will pull the weeds out with ease.

The road to hell, they say, is paved....

I went out the front door this afternoon to check the mail and was astonished by my front bed. I can't even call it a flower bed. It was a weed bed. My poor flowers. I waited for the afternoon to settle into the early cool of evening and I went out with my bucket and trowel to remedy my self-created situation.


I was on my hands in knees in the dirt, listening to the bird on the wire scold me, when I realized how many times I had watered these weeds and never returned to pull them. I paused for a moment when I realized the weeds in my life I've been watering. How many times have I said I'll change this habit or stop that one? How many times, with road-paving intentions have I laid plans in my head to make a change tomorrow, in the morning, on Monday or next week, but never "got around to it"?

My life, I fear, looks in some ways much like my weed bed. It's hard to see the fruits.


I was out there for awhile digging and raking and pulling and weeding when I noticed my sad puppy eyeing me out the front door. I went out back and got his leash and brought him out where he lay in the shade of the tree while I worked. And it comforted me. I had company now. I wasn't out here alone. The bird stopped scolding me and it felt like a peaceful way to spend my evening.

I don't need to weed out my life alone, either. I have an ever-present support system just waiting on me - waiting to encourage - literally to give me the courage - waiting to provide me with the resources, the willpower, the stamina...whatever I need, I know it will be provided.

The bed was daunting when I began, but before dark I had the front complete. I know in several places I didn't get all the roots of the weeds - it might look thorough now, but it will need vigilance and dedication to keep it this way. I've raked up the soil, trying to disturb any of the weed's roots from flourishing again, but I know it's just a temporary effort. I still have more work to do on both side beds, and it seems now that I'm on the look out for weeds, I see them everywhere in my yard. So much work to do...

Before I went in for the night, I turned on the sprinkler and gave my flowers a long refreshing drink. It was nice to stand back and see all the blossoms and flowers this time.


Jesus told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared. "The owner's servants came to him and said, 'Sir, didn't you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?' 'An enemy did this,' he replied. Matt 13:24-28

Thursday, July 08, 2010

I Keep Forgetting

That some of you out there don't know me on Facebook. Which is really all fine and dandy except that I keep posting things on FB and NOT here and then I get these sweet little emails saying...."Did you fall off the earth?" and I realize that you're not at all up to speed over here in Bloggerland.

Sigh.

So, there's the fact that Jacob is gone (again - you know, it's summer). One month until he returns. I can do it.

So, the garden. Yeah, um...I'm starting to panic.

And then there's the big news that I never seemed to reveal (how rude was that?!)

So, here's what I propose (and you really get no vote in the matter, so hush. Yes, Mig, you in the back, that means you.) I'm going to post over the next few days HERE and catch you up. Cause that's how nice I am. But I'm not going to do it yet today.

Sorry.

But it's coming!