(8:10 a.m. this morning… true story)
I pull up to the drive thru speaker area…
Speaker: Thanks for choosing McDonald’s, how may I help you?
Me: “Good morning, I would like a large coffee.”
Speaker: I’m sorry, what?
Me: A large coffee please.
Me: “Coffee. Large.”
Me: “Cof – fee. Beverage. Large… hot”
Speaker: Got it.
Me: “And a hashbrown.”
Speaker: Ok, pull ahead.
(I pull up to the pay window…)
Person at window: Ok, that’s one large coffee, that’s $1…
Me: “…and a hashbrown.”
Person at window: Oh. That’s not on your order.
Me: “I ordered a hashbrown too.”
Person at window: Well, that’ll be more money.
Person at window: “The total is $2.11″
I pay and pull to the final window.
Dude at window: Here’s your large coffee… thanks.
Me: “And a hashbrown.”
Dude at window: Really?
That’s my morning experience…. too funny not to blog!
What a day Thursday was! Filled with work to do and all the time lingering in the back of my mind…. Justin’s graduating tonight…
I am not real sure why this hit me the way it did. It’s not like I didn’t know this day was coming…. yet, once it was here… I felt like a season in my life was ending… and it made me a little sad.
Upside…. when a season ends, or a door closes, God provides yet another season… another door…
So last evening Al and I arrived at the school at 5:30 to wait in line for the doors to open at 6pm. Even at 5:30 the line was long and I was re leaved to finally get into the gym and get seated.
When the kids came in – 555 in all, the largest class in recent history oh BHS, my hear melted a bit. There were the kids that had been at our house for birthday parties, sleep overs, and camp outs. There were kids we had driven to sports events, to movies, and to each others houses. Kids I knew for a season… and some I am still getting to know.
The program was well thought out – the kids were quite funny with the beach balls being tossed through the air while the teachers said no… their last hurrah as a group. You could feel the energy in the air.
And so, it ended. Or did it begin? The school careers of these now almost adults… from kindergarten to here. Pictures were taken, hugs and best wishes handed out.
I look at my 18 year old son and I am so proud of him.
I look at my husband and we are both in awe of having raised two boys to this point.
In the last 7 days I…
- Had a team meeting with our employees
- Went to a Teen Challenge Meeting
- Worked 24 hours at the church
- Worked 22 hours in our home office
- Completed a study on Psalm 46
- Attended a MMBA Meeting (mid Minnesota Builders Association)
- Talk to my Grandma
- Was without my vehicle for 30 hours…
- Was given rides from Sarah M. and Heidi S. (thanks friends!)
- Attended a birthday dinenr for a good friend of mine – Sara Moe
- Had coffee and prayer during our Thursday Morning Coffee Group at Coco Moon
- Assembled and excelled at the Ladies Night Out Bingo Event w/ Joelle (15 women attended!!!)
- Prepared a luncheon menu for a Pastors Wives Meeting
- Roller bladed with my cousin Cheryl – 5 miles
- Packed up Al, Me, 2 dogs and a rabbit to go to the cabin for the weekend
- swapped a book on SwapTree.com
- Completed 2 books over weekend
- Drove around Silver Bay looking at ATV’s and the beauty of the land
- Ate lunch at the Tressle Inn (Finland, Minnesota)
- Watched Oceans 13 with Al
- Had a midnight birthday party for Chance Sunday evening – he turned 13!!!
- Watched two movies with Justin, Chance, and Al
- Shopped with Chance so he could spend his birthday money
- Spent hours on the internet researching the average household use of toilet paper in a year. (I seriously did…)
Memorial weekend used to mean something different when I was growing up. It was picnics and get togethers, the smell of hamburgers on the grill, and lilacs in the air.
For a long time now – for me, it is a tough time of year and for the past 12 years (I can’t believe it has been 12 years) this melancholy state holds on from now through the first week of June. This is a time of great reflection and remembering, the happy memories I hold close that seem to make me a little sad.
Today I picked out the flowering plants to honor and remember my family. At my dad, mom, and sisters grave I place these baskets with great care, turning them this way and that until I am satisfied with how they look. I lean against the tree that my mom had planted there 28 year ago and am in awe of its size. Against my back it feels strong and warm and while my grief rises, my heart whispers, “Be Still…”
I always think of my sister Tara during this time. I calculate the math and know that in a week she would have been 34. 34! I like to imagine what she would be like. I picture her all adult and I believe she would have children, which would make me an aunt! We would be close and talk often on the phone and share the bond of having lost our parents. She would be doing something great with her life, saving the world in her own soft way…
I go to where my Great Grandmother was laid to rest and as I reach for my plants out of the back of my vehicle and I see four elderly women huddled down together at a grave site, chatting amongst themselves as they work their plants in the ground. I wonder who they are respecting… a close friend, a relative? How incredible for them to share this time of rememberance together. I want to take a picture of them to hold this memory… but I don’t want to intrude or spoil their moment.
Instead, I grab my notebook from the back seat and sit on the bench that is my Grandmother’s grave marker. She herself had requested a bench so people would sit and stay a while… so I do. And as I do I start doccumenting in my notebook this great feeling of peace I have being here and the moments my heart is capturing through the benefit of my eyes.
I watch the four women as they move to another grave site and start their process over again. It does not appear to be a painful one as they smile and laugh and are enjoying their time together.
I think back to last evening as I left the Franklin Art Center Building around 9:00 p.m. and noticed a group of five musicians had gathered on the steps and grass and were softly playing beautiful music. There was a chello and a couple guitars as well as a flute player. It was amazing to see.
I asked them what brought them here and they said they were just a group of friends enjoying a nice evening together with their songs. I watched for awhile wanting to capture this moment too.
Four elderly women chatting while they plant flowers in Evergreen cemetary and a group of happy musicians playing their hearts out on the lawn. These captured moments are what I love about this town. I long for these scenes to be the norm… a song on every corner, a group of women getting together with the memory of an old friend…. and me, thanking God again for the wonderful people I had in my life as well as the blessing of those He has placed with me now.
I love books. I always have and I have blogged so many times on this topic as well as added a second blog on books that I won’t bore you with the details…. just trust this fact to be true - I love books.
So this Thursdays Thumbs Up goes to friends who borrow you something they have read and enjoyed. This is like the ultimate gift. They are asking you to share on the adventure – you open the cover and off you go!
These borrowed books I handle with loving care. They have been entrusted to me and I can’t wait to dive into the hidden adventure, mystery, learning, that awaits within the pages.
Recently while talking to a friend, I mentioned after seeing the Prince Caspian Movie that I had to read the book by C.S. Lewis. Later that day he brought me the whole Narnia series to borrow that he happened to have at home. TREASURES!!!
I am off for a weekend at our cabin – 3 hour drive there and a variety of books going along…
Let the adventures begin!
And then… about two years ago… I went to Mink Lake Camp for the first time. And in a rustic garden by beautiful running water, … God gave me a new verse, “Be Still And Know That I Am God.” Looking around that space of peace and tranquility I wanted nothing more than to be still and feel His presence surround me.
God is our refuge and strength,
always ready to help in times of trouble.
2 So we will not fear when earthquakes come
and the mountains crumble into the sea.
3 Let the oceans roar and foam.
Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge!
4 A river brings joy to the city of our God,
the sacred home of the Most High.
5 God dwells in that city; it cannot be destroyed.
From the very break of day, God will protect it.
6 The nations are in chaos,
and their kingdoms crumble!
God’s voice thunders,
and the earth melts!
7 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us;
the God of Israel[b] is our fortress.
8 Come, see the glorious works of the Lord:
See how he brings destruction upon the world.
9 He causes wars to end throughout the earth.
He breaks the bow and snaps the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God!
I will be honored by every nation.
I will be honored throughout the world.”
11 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us;
the God of Israel is our fortress.
Looking at this PSALM – we know it is more than a time of peace and gardens… The original context of Psalm 46:10 comes from Exodus 14: 13-14. God had just rescued the slaves from the cruel Pharaoh in Egypt. Ten Plagues had broken the king’s spirit, and now the slaves were hurrying to the Sinia desert before Pharaoh changed his mind. But they did not go fast enough as the king did change his mind and now was in hot pursuit. Unorganized, no weapons, just a mass of people including children, and even worse, the red sea lay before them – they were trapped and hopeless. The Red Sea was an angry mass before them and they cried out to Moses, their leader.
This is the first example of Holy War in the Bible. God’s brand of Holy War. Be still and know that I Am.
Exodus 14: 13-14 reads: “Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you, you only need to be still.”
You need to only be still.
Psalm 46 speaks of troubling times, roaring seas, crumbling mountains and kingdoms. Yet at the conclusion of the Psalm we hear God speak, “Be still and know that I am God.” He tells us that in the worst of times we must stop hurrying and worrying. Just be still! And in that stillness see Him as the God He truly is.
I think back to that peaceful day in the garden at Mink and know now that there is so much more to this verse. In times of great struggle and grief I have felt God’s Hand on me as though He was holding me up.
I know He was.
- Last Monday spent most of day and all of the evening checking and prepping for our audit. Canceled all scheduled appointments for the day to get this done.
- Tuesday had our book club review of Year of the Fog – it was fun to be at Kaydi’s house and potluck around our book theme…. love the imaginations of this group! While the book wasn’t that great, the review was. As the book stemmed around a missing child it brought up interesting conversations around actual cases and how the lives of those close are changed forever…
- Tuesday late evening helped Justin complete his Grad invites.
- Wednesday was the audit (see the blog post here). It was a long – LONG day but I learned so much and our company will be better for it.
- Thursday was totally FRIED. Still in audit recovery… Worked then stayed home with no energy. None.
- Friday went to garage sales with Suzette – we had a blast!!!
- Friday evening went out to dinner with the Hubby to Grizzley’s
- Saturday morning went to the New Song Grand Opening with Chance
- Saturday afternoon met with Sarah on the bike trail and then we went for coffee to catch up.
- Saturday evening Al and I went to a surprise Graduation party for an employees wife who just graduated from College and was going to miss her actual graduation due to her sisters wedding. That was fun!
- Sunday was out final meeting or our Grace class and I was sad to see it end. We had such a wonderful time and learned so much together. What a great group!
- Sunday afternoon Chance and Karen and I went to the movie Prince Caspian – it was SO Good! Watch for Brett’s review of this movie on Kidology – click here
- Sunday evening prepped for a meeting with the employees set for Monday morning.
- This week I have another full schedule – something every night. Monday – Teen Challenge, Tuesday – Builders meeting, Wednesday – A friends birthday dinner, Thursday – Ladies Night Out, Friday we leave for the cabin….
- Oh yeah – WOO HOO! We leave for the cabin up North for Memorial Weekend!!!
Last week I received a call that our company had been chosen for a DOT Audit. Never having been through an audit and having a bit (just a tad) of perfectionism in me, I wanted things to be right. At first I was nervous to the fact that the woman said that she would be with me all day ….
All day? What could possibly take all day???
… but then as the days went on I found myself looking forward to the audit. What an opportunity to have someone truly in the know go through our files and reports and assist us in being accurate. Of course I spent the days prior to the event rechecking my files, my paperwork, etc….
Then on Wednesday I had cleared the whole day for the audit. She arrived at 9 am and we sat at my kitchen table from 9am until 6 pm – no breaks, no food, just paperwork… and I learned a lot… she offered me to do my own thing and she would call if she needed me, but hanging out with her taught me so much… priceless information. I had piles of notes, she gave me better forms, it was like a training day!
When all was said and done she sat down with Al and I and layed out her findings. She said she rarely seen a company go through their first audit with as few of corrections as we did. She pointed out that most companies come out of their first time with hefty fines well into the upper thousands… we came out – fine free. (PTL!)
I am still a bit ecstatic with these results but the most amazing thing was by the time she was done – I was EXHAUSTED. I absolutely had done nothing but listen and make copies all day long but I was shot! Still am a little bit…. It must have been all the anxiety leading up the audit, and then the actual sitting through it and hoping (PRAYING really) that I had things right…..
It’s here this week! Remember we have a plan to get a whole group of us to go to this movie. (See original Blog on this here). Looking at Sunday the 18th or Wednesday the 21st as a possibility… Who’s in and when do we all want to go?
One year later, the Kings and Queens of Narnia find themselves back in that faraway wondrous realm, only to discover that more than 1,300 years have passed in Narnian time. During their absence, the Golden Age of Narnia has become extinct and Narnia has been conquered by the Telmarines and is now under the control of the evil King Miraz, who rules the land without mercy. The four children will soon meet a curious new character: Narnia’s rightful heir to the throne, the young Prince Caspian, who has been forced into hiding, as his uncle Miraz plots to kill him in order to place his own newborn son on the throne. With the help of the kindly dwarf, a courageous talking mouse named Reepicheep, a badger named Trufflehunter and a Black Dwarf, Nikabrik, the Narnians–led by the mighty knights Peter and Caspian–embark on a remarkable journey to find Aslan, rescue Narnia from Miraz’s tyrannical hold, and restore magic and glory to the land.