54 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 12-20-18

  1. Good morning! That header looks cold.

    Art continued to have bleeding so we went to the ER last night. We are finally getting to go home. They tracked his blood count and the blood he is losing is not a continuous loss according to lab work. It has been pretty tortuous sleeping (?) in a regular non-adjustable chair all evening. Not sure my body will ever be the same.

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  2. Wow, that is a lot of gulls. I once saw a scene much like that on a lake in Michigan (Huron?), but the zoom lens I had at the time couldn’t even begin to capture it. And I don’t know if there were as many as in that photo; it may have been just a couple hundred in a thinner line that I saw.

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  3. Morning! Janice I was awake at 12:30 am and saw your post….you were covered in prayer by some of us who for “some reason” could not sleep…thanks for updating us as we continue to lift you up….
    I’ll be off and running again…so much to do…sinus infection finally subsiding and it seems only the headaches remain….ibuprofen helps with that 😊

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  4. I was awake off and on, too — and praying for you Janice. I even checked the site on my phone once to see if you’d posted any updates. Glad he doesn’t have to stay and it’s something that seems treatable. Long night for you both, though; sleeping in that chair sounds awful.

    Reminds me that I really do need a new mattress in 2019.

    I had a restless night interspersed with some strange, unsettling dreams. My former roommate is coming over this afternoon for the rest of the day and she’ll stay well into the evening or even wee hours of Friday (she’s the champion of night owls); I still have some picking up around the house and gift wrapping to do before she gets here at around 2 p.m. The washing machine is going already and it’s just after 6:30 a.m., the sun is barely coming up.

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  5. Sounds like seventeen year old son is wanting to be signed into the National Guard so he can go to boot camp this summer. That will be nice. Give him a slightly different perspective from playing Fortnite all the time, in school and out.

    They have attendance finals here, I have mentioned them before. For those who are flunking or getting D’s or have missed too much class time, they have to come in a few extra days to do “projects” to bring up their grades. The projects have nothing to do with what they are flunking but son certainly enjoys the free ride. Being in the National Guard will be a different experience.

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  6. cold in Colorado. Turns out the room that I am sleeping in is the coldest, so it was good to get up. As I got on the plane yesterday, they announced that only middle seats were left so take any that you see. I continued on to the back looking for a place for my luggage in the overhead bins. A flight attendant was standing there. She motioned for me to put my bag up in a spot and then asked if I wanted the seat that she was standing in front of, an aisle seat!! so sweet.

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  7. 50s and rainy here. At least it’s not snowing.

    Oh, Cheryl- your secret room is over 6,100 posts.

    RK- I’ll take some of those tamales, except they would be hard to ship. Do you make them with olives or raisins, or neither? Some in Tucson use raisins. Adds a little sweetness to them. There are a few Mexican restaurants here. Maybe they’ll have tamales.

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  8. So we have an active four-year-old on the blog. Wheee! 🙂

    I tell you, what a week of ups and downs. I’ve written about some of them, mostly on the prayer thread. Today has been no different. All the downs have occurred in the morning. From now on, I should probably sleep until noon and eliminate those crummy mornings. 😛

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  9. Thirties and cloudy and windy here, but not snow geesing. We do have them passing through here. They make quite large flocks.

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  10. There is something happening in our neighborhood this week that has been surprisingly distressing to me. I’m having difficulty processing it and letting it go. I hope it’s okay if I write it out here. Feel free to scroll past if you’d rather not read what will probably be a jumbled ramble.

    (Some of this I mentioned before, but more is transpiring now.)

    We live on a dead-end road, and there are three other families besides ours who live here.

    Rather, there were three other families here (so, four houses) on our road.

    The family (of five) at the closed end of the road were renters at the house — they formerly owned it, but sold it to a major construction company in the area a few years ago.

    In September of this year, the family got told they would need to find someplace else to live by December 1 because the company didn’t want a house on their property anymore.

    The family is out, living in town now, and my husband told me on Monday this week that he’d heard the house was going to be torn down either Tuesday or Wednesday this week.

    I don’t know why that hit me so hard, but it did. It’s only a house, and wasn’t even ours ever. But it’s another loss.

    We lost good neighbors. We get (got) along with all our neighbors, but it just feels like a hole around here with them gone.

    And now their house is slowly, inexorably, getting dismantled. There are multiple pieces of heavy machinery crushing their house. (We can’t see it from here, though.) And the truck that’s hauling it all away load by load started doing so at daybreak yesterday. It drove past our house, empty, headed to the back of the road.

    Seven minutes later, it goes past our house again, full of house remnants getting hauled to a dump site in a different community.

    Forty minutes later, back on our road, empty.

    Seven minutes later, leaving our road, full.

    All day (daylight hours) yesterday. And continuing today.

    My sadness and unsettled feeling grows with every appearance (or sound) of that truck rolling by.

    And now today, despite the great end to my day yesterday (see yesterday’s prayer thread), this morning started out bad again. I got an email that announced that the resolution to one of the problems with outside sources that I mentioned this week — resolution that I was told in writing would be taken care of this week — was a mistake, and supposedly won’t now be taken care of until December 28.

    The tears came again, the anger, the frustration, and I had to go take a vigorous walk to pound out my angst.

    Why, then, did I walk toward the back of the road? I don’t know. Maybe just to get a glimpse of our former neighbors’ property and remind me that I don’t have it as bad as they do. I do not think my stresses are as bad as theirs are right now.

    I walked fast, but couldn’t go to the end of the road. The assault on my ears was too much. Not that it was too loud. But I could hear the sound of destruction in the near distance. And I had to turn around. It was too much for me.

    Is this even normal, to be bothered so much by this destruction? This earth is not our home, I keep telling myself, and am reminded by all the conversations I’ve had this week with friends and acquaintances of B, the dear lady from our church who died early Sunday morning.

    I guess, too, I have some degree of worry about our new cat, who belonged to our former neighbors. We’ve only had her a week and a half, and she’s escaped twice already in that time. The first time, she was gone for 12 hours, not returning until 9:30 pm. Efforts to find her failed, but she returned on her own.

    The second time she got away, we know she went to her old home because the former neighbors found her there when they drove back to the old property to retrieve more things from the house. They brought the cat back here after they discovered her there.

    Thankfully, the cat has not gotten out yesterday or today with everything going on at the back of the road. Poor thing; she probably just wants her home property and family back. 😦

    This all puts me on the verge of tears again and again. It’s incredibly mysterious to me why I am reacting so.

    Time to head out. I’ve decided to go run some errands, and, while out, take care of the problem that was supposed to be resolved Dec. 28. After my vigorous walk this morning, which helped disperse some of my anger, I called someone about that problem, and now I am told resolution will come at 3:00 this afternoon. I am choosing to think positively and believe that it will actually be wrapped up as I was told. The lady I spoke with seemed nice and sincere, and she told me resolution is in her hands now, not in anyone else’s.

    Thank you for listening (reading), and praying, if you’re so inclined to in this, rather, these, multiple situations.

    Liked by 6 people

  11. I hate making phone calls to people I don’t know – they leave me feeling emotionally and physically drained, even when I am successful in getting my message across. Face to face contact is actually less stressful.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Anybody know anything about RightNow Media? Our church put out an offer to let people use that. Wondering if it is worth the time.

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  13. 6 Arrows – I have had similar seemingly over-reactive or unconnected emotional responses to various things at times. (And not just since Hubby died.) Sometimes I eventually figure out why I felt that way, but sometimes (maybe most of the time) I don’t. Praying for peace and calm in your heart.

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  14. Thank you, Kizzie, and others who prayed. I feel at peace now. The person I spoke with this morning on the phone and this afternoon in person was genuine, and came through. Situation resolved.

    Thank you, Lord.

    But I still ask, why do I continually act as if my peace (or lack thereof) is dependent on circumstances? A question I’ll probably never know the answer to while on earth.

    Time to fix supper, eat, and go to the Christmas piano concert. I will enjoy sitting back, listening to my friends play their music. Then I’ll be playing my three selections, which end the program.

    Thanking God for another good end to the day. (At least I’m anticipating that.)

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  15. 6 Arrows, I feel that what you are witnessing is a reminder of the fragility of life and the overall insignificance, on a worldly level, of our own little personal kingdoms. What you described reminds me greatly of how it has been felt in dismantling our church. At times it has felt horrifying because of losses experienced by dear older people associated with certain ministries that are no more. I am sorry to hear of your great sadness. A lot has to do with looking to the future for gains that could not have occurred except for the losses happening. If God has good plans then we need to keep looking ahead to where He is making things happen. Another factor you may be dealing with is having to admit to how little control we actually have over what happens in our lives. Each new loss feels like a chip off of the imagined block of control we hold over our lives and the lives of our loved ones (including beloved neighbors). Could that be part of it, too?

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  16. In looking at the header, I saw it as a snow covered field with the stubble of former crops poking up through the snow. I saw one flying white bird. That is what I viewed on my small phone screen through my cateracts. That was why I said it looked like a cold place. Now I want to see what y’all said is there!

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  17. 6 Arrows, change is hard, and in our culture at this moment in history we are assaulted by constant change–more than we were created to handle. The loss of 25% of the houses, and the households, on your street is a major one. You also probably have some uncertainty about what will go in its place.

    Grief is a funny thing. I lost a very good friend this week, someone I have known for about a quarter century. I worshiped in the same church with her for 13 years (though I didn’t know her for the first four or five years of that time), volunteered at the same place for an evening a week for a year (it was often just the two of us in a room), lived next door to her for another year and then around the corner for another seven years. I have gone on several women’s retreats with her, being her roommate at least once; have eaten Thanksgiving dinner with her and her family once; hosted her in my house (in Nashville) for five days, and stayed in her house (in Chicago) for two or three. I’ve spent a lot of hours sitting in her living room, others talking on the phone, others sitting next to her in prayer meeting or another church gathering. I invited her to come live with me in my home. When she went to church with me in Nashville, I introduced her as “my Chicago mama.” I wanted her to stand up with me in my wedding (but the platform really wasn’t big enough for more than four attendants on each side, and asking her would have brought it up to six, and she ended up being unable to come anyway). I love her dearly, and though I have known for two or three months she probably had made it to her last health challenge, the loss is real and profound. But I haven’t cried. I’ve cried about much smaller things than this, but not this. Partly it’s the very real sense that for her, this is great gain. And part is probably the separation that comes from living far enough away I probably wouldn’t have seen her again, and only talking on the phone a few times a year. But the loss is still real, and still huge, and I haven’t cried. It isn’t always clear why some things hit us in different ways. I may well cry about something tiny in the next few days, but this will be the real basis of the tears, I don’t know. (I did feel numb that night I heard, stayed up into the wee hours, and thought through all the different life scenarios that included her, and I talked by phone to a friend who also loved her.)

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  18. 6 Arrows, I’m curious. You said the construction company that owns the property now doesn’t want a house on it any more. Do you know what they do want, what the property will be used for?

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  19. Did you tell your children to buy Christmas presents for other family members? Did they do it on their own? Did they not do it at all?

    We have an interesting mix. The two seventeen year olds have never bought anybody a gift except the first year they were with us and they were taught how. They don’t have a problem accepting gifts. Some of the others are that way as well. They make big lists but it never occurs to them to buy for others. Others seem to be always bringing or sending gifts Interesting.

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  20. I taught Wesley about buying gifts but it was not reinforced by Art because he is off and on with gifts and cards. That seems to have resulted in a relaxed attitude in Wesley so the day is not important, but he usually does at a later date have a gift and card. This is mostly because we are not together on the special days except for Christmas. He does have several gifts for each family member for Christmas. I did get a nice Panasonic set of earphones which was more expensive than he had wanted. He did not reject Bose but thought they were too expensive. He is practical with other’s spending. He just told me that he will not require students to buy an expensive book for the class he will teach next, but will use something less expensive. I am glad he thinks of others like that.

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  21. Kitchen is almost half done!!! We will get all the doors on and drawers in tonight on the stove side of the kitchen. That was our goal to have finished before Christmas. I am so very happy.

    After Christmas we will tackle the sink side of the kitchen.

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  22. Yay, Kare!

    I have a novel I’m editing, several hundred pages, and my goal was to finish the first pass today or tomorrow. I have about 30 pages left, so I’m making it. That will give me several days off to read, maybe do some writing, etc. before the author gets it back to me for the second pass. (And if he happens to work quickly and get it back to me in two or three days–I’ve had that happen–I’ll still take the time off, since I want it off and also since it’s better for editing to have at least a few days between passes.)

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  23. Working late at the office tonight. Quite a bit of time spent waiting for a program to run, so I’ll enjoy any company here. Or maybe I’ll just talk myself until about 57 or so.

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  24. Mumsee, when our children were young, maybe through middle school, we took them shopping for inexpensive gifts for each other and for us using our money. (They’d have to go on two trips – I took them to get gifts for Mrs B and Mrs B took them to get gifts for me.) As older teens and adults they’ve continued to buy gifts with their own money. KJ particularly has a gift (!) for making thoughtful and delightful choices. She didn’t get it from me.

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  25. Janice, you’re right, control is an issue with me. I say God’s in control, I know God’s in control, yet I still try to control what’s His to control.

    And it’s all His, isn’t it?

    This week I’ve thought more than once about the time from my youth that my friend’s house burned down. The day is etched firmly in my memory. My siblings and I were standing at the end of our driveway, waiting for the school bus one chilly morning. We could see the smoke coming from her family’s home down the road.

    I can still, to this day, almost smell the odor of my friend’s smoke-drenched coat when she was at our house after school. It’s like it’s right there, on the edge of my senses still, if that makes sense.

    I didn’t see their house burn down, but coming home after school and seeing the smoldering pile that used to be their house has stayed in my memory, though quite recessed.

    Hearing about our (former) neighbors now (on our road) and that their house would be destroyed must have tripped my memory of my childhood neighbors’ destroyed home.

    Cheryl, I understand what you mean about grief sometimes being a funny thing. (Not funny, ha ha, of course, which I know is not what you were saying, either.) Four friends of mine died over an 8-month period in 2011 (two relatives during that time, too), and other than at their funerals, I hardly cried at all. The ache of those losses hit me more the next year than initially, and while I still rarely cried over their deaths, I couldn’t seem to pick myself up after that. Not for years, actually. Maybe it was other things causing my slump, or adding to the grief, but I think those multiple deaths in a short period had some impact. I didn’t grieve hard, but I grieved long, in my estimation.

    But for now, I guess this is a form of grieving, mourning the loss of our neighbors, and you’re right, 25% of our neighborhood homes gone now is no small change.

    Kevin, good questions. I asked my husband what he thinks. He says he doesn’t know, and nobody knows. The company doesn’t want to say anything about their plans.

    If I had to guess (but it’s an uninformed guess at best), it might have something to do with the quarry that’s way back there, in the hilly land between town and our little rural road. They might want to extend the access road farther than it goes now, or come in to the quarry from a different direction, or increase the size of it? I don’t know. None of us on the road likes the big blasts that come about once a month; they shake the houses and rattle the windows.

    Still, though, this area has been home for us for decades now. We’ve got our little community of friendly neighbors, and now it’s gotten majorly shaken up. Not surprising, but still jarring in ways.

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  26. The concert tonight was a lot of fun again, as usual. Nice variety of Christmas songs at the piano, some as solos, some as duets.

    The organizer, my friend M, told me tonight she’s started working on Debussy’s Suite Bergamasque, which she wants to perform next year in a joint recital with me. I’m still deciding on what I will play for my solos. We will also reprise our performance of Schubert’s Fantasie in F Minor for piano four hands.

    This will be in October or November that we’ll do our recital. I’m looking forward to that. So is she. She gave me a hug after the concert tonight and told me how excited she is to get us on a program together.

    What can I say — I am, too. 🙂 Collaborating with her is always a treat.

    Liked by 3 people

  27. Anyone want to help me get to 57? (We’d get to 49 on the way, and would be almost to 62 that way…) Where are my brother and sister when I need them?

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  28. I finished the first edit of the book. I only sent the author the first half, since often it is only a few hours after I read a portion that my mind reminds me two sections are inconsistent or something or other doesn’t work. I’ll find it on the second and third edits if not now, but I’d rather send the author 90% of my questions and notes on the first edit, not later ones.

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  29. I cooked two fried eggs for Art a few minutes ago. Of course we are all off schedule right now. He is still in pain and probably passed either a clot or perhaps a stone fragment this evening.

    It’s raining again here. More dreariness that makes Christmas sales less than they would be for the shops around town. Amazon probably appreciates rain and other forms of bad weather.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. I had to spend some time feeding my program instead of waiting for it, so I wasn’t here for awhile. I got back and have lots to read now. Thanks, RK!

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  31. Interesting discussions on grief and loss (my friend just left a while ago, it’s going on 2 a.m., but I’m not quite sleepy just yet).

    The loss of my friend down the street still stings, mainly the swiftness of her illness and death and (in our view from earth) the untimeliness of it all (she was turning 62 in October, she died in September). You can see into her apartment now from the street with the windows unadorned by her favorite billowing sheers, the windows usually flung wide open — now it’s stark and empty, all of her furniture gone (it was sparsely furnished, she was a minimalist before there was such a term, but her things were all so “her” — feminine, lots of spring pastels, especially yellow, her favorite color, the piano she hoped to master, the cherished framed photograph on the wall of her Schnauzer, Asher, long gone now). The windows are uncharacteristically shut tight. While she is now truly home, I can’t quite wrap my head around her earthly absence somehow — not yet. As Christmas approaches, I miss seeing her familiar string of lights tied festively along her window “balcony” banister. This loss seems unlike others I’ve experienced — certainly not worse, but just different and haunting somehow.

    I suppose I’m also just at the age where I am beginning to lose peers which is jarring in its own way, a very different experience than losing the generation that went before us.

    Well, in other news, my long-ago ex-roommate and I had a good time hanging out tonight, lots and lots of talking, a good dinner out followed by pie, more talk, and gift opening.

    And I suppose it’s beyond time for me to go to bed already.

    Liked by 3 people

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