Tuesday, June 23, 2009

God's Laughing

I have often heard the saying “If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.” Well, two weeks ago I told of my plans to get so much done before David got out of school for the summer and God began laughing before the day was out.

First, on Monday two weeks ago as I was speeding through to get some heavy duty packing done I got a call from the school. David was acting up and I needed to pick him up from school—he was suspended for the remainder of that day and the next three days. I could just hear light laughter.

Then, at ten o’clock that same day our nephew called. He announced his engagement to a wonderful girl in late March. The wedding was held the end of May. We had not been able to attend since it was in Manilla, the Philippines. So they had just gotten back in the states that day and would like to visit on their way to New Jersey.

Sure, when would they be going through? Tuesday night and they would be here in time for dinner—the next night. So the meal I had planned and purchased food for would not be enough to serve two extra people and the guest sheets were all packed up. Tuesday began with a revised meal list and a trip to the store. When I got home I washed David’s sheets and had to scrounge for a top sheet since David never liked having one—it was packed also. David has a habit of using pillow cases for toy bags and there never seems to be any on his pillows. So I had to strip our pillows of their pillow cases and wash the whole lot. Then I fixed the meal and waited and waited.

At 6 pm I called their cell and found they would be another two hours at least. They had gotten a late start and gotten lost. So we ate and I sent David to bed in our room on his old mattress with mismatched coverings. Our guests arrived a little after 8:30 and after eating and opening our wedding gifts to them it was almost bed time. This was the first time we had met the bride and we are so glad our nephew has chosen a wonderful bride.

Wednesday we were up bright and early. We waited on our guests to rise...and waited...and waited. Finally our nephew was up and went for a walk while I began making breakfast. I’m not sure if we had breakfast or brunch since it was after 10 when everyone was up and ready to eat. Shortly after breakfast the happy couple had to leave for New Jersey and I began the kitchen clean up. I was right on time to fix lunch and begin dinner for our Wednesday night kids.

I could just hear God’s laughter as we made plans to go into work with Rich the next day and then Friday was filled with calling doctors and hospitals about why they were billing us and not the insurance company for David’s bike accident. They claim they hadn’t received our insurance information. We had given it all to them at the emergency room and they had never passed it along to the doctor’s billing agency.

Somewhere along the way I had a birthday. One of our good friends, Peg, made me bananna pudding and we went to see the matinee of Night at the Museum 2 – Battle of the Smithsonian. It was a wonderful movie and I think I enjoyed it even more than the first movie. Of course, we have seen the sights from the movie first hand and it was fun to see how they incorporated the Washington, DC, Smithsonians into the movie.

That weekend David developed a bad rash on his back—a heat rash and all last week we had to keep him in and bathed in cold water to get rid of it. David does not like to stay inside so this was a constant battle to watch over him.

So for two weeks very little packing has been done. We have also not received our approval and the cottage is still not on the market. I have left messages for the lady handling our approval and she has not been in. So we are at a stand-still and waiting on God.

This week I have been able to work on packing and our kids are out of town so I won’t have to cook for them. Rich has been very busy with work and even though he doesn’t work on Sundays, he had to this past Sunday morning.

I know that David is feeling as if he wants to just get over this whole moving business and on to our new home. He talks about it constantly and the last two weeks he has not gone to sleep until hours after his bedtime.

When he asks us about the move and when it will finally happen we just tell him we don’t know, but God does. It’s all in His hands and we are doing what we can to be prepared—packing, calling about the approval, and keeping in touch with the real estate agent. But, we are not in control and this is a good lesson for David to see lived out.

I can still hear the faint sound of God’s laughter.

I am encouraged by all of you who are sending prayers and thoughts our way. Please pray that we can be an example to David by trusting in God.

P.S. I had a little chuckle myself just now. As I was saving this post, the internet went out on my computer. Luckily, I had saved it just a few minutes before so not much had to be rewritten.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Unwelcomed Guest

We have been very busy getting ready for our move, which is the reason I have not been blogging. I have gotten questions about the move and will try to give the information now.

We have not found a house yet, but we should see a home that we think will work this week since it is not due on the market for a few more days. It is a cottage that seems to fit our needs and the agent thinks is perfect for us. She will call us a few days before it goes on the market so we get first crack at it. Unfortunately, it is about 3 hours away from where we live now, so we will have to change our church home. We will miss our "kids" so much, but have been blessed that some have stayed here over the summer and we are still able to see them until our move. It is also a good time to change schools since David will have to move to high school anyway.

I have been working hard at trying to get the basement packed and everything brought upstairs before David’s summer vacation from school begins. Today is his last full day of school and then he has three half days before he is a high schooler. I don’t want his whole summer about packing and unpacking.

So last night I went downstairs to do a little more work after David went to bed. As I walked down the hall I thought David was playing a trick on me. There was a long black snake lying on the floor and it was so still I knew it had to be a toy. I still wasn’t sure since at one time he had a snake that looked like it but David couldn’t find it for years.

When I got a photography background to bring back up I saw the “toy’s” head and upper body crawling up the wall. This was NOT a toy. The stairs were on the opposite side of the snake and I didn’t want to yell for Rich since I knew David wasn’t yet asleep. So I got something to place between me and the snake and s-l-o-w-l-y made my way past him.

I got upstairs and told Rich I needed his help—that there was a snake in the basement. I think I sounded calmer then I felt since he asked me “a snake?”

My brave husband took a shovel and I grabbed a box so we could try to get the snake out of the house without killing it—my husband’s idea, since my attitude is that the snake had invaded my territory so he deserved to die. I know they always say never kill a black snake because they’re “good snakes.” Is there such as good think as a good snake? Yes, I know they kill rodents but since Roger, our pet rabbit, is a rodent I wasn’t going to let the snake stay. I also didn’t want to reach into a box and get bit.

I grabbed a camera and took a picture before we tried the box trick—it didn’t work. Then we did the shovel trick, you know the one where you whack him into as many pieces as it takes to kill him. That trick worked, of course that way did create a fair amount of blood. We left the snake on the basement floor until this morning so that David could see it. We were very lucky that David fell asleep during the killing of the intruder.

I checked online to see what we could do to prevent any more of his family visiting our home and found that moth balls drive them away, which I can understand. So in order to protect Roger I have placed moth balls at the bottom of the basement steps, at the top and outside all the doors. I am very glad so much of the work downstairs has already been done, since I will be on the lookout for more unwelcome guests.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

D-Day Remembrance

Today marks the 65th anniversary of Operation Overlord or what is commonly known as D-Day. The planning of this massive operation included military from the allied forces and the landing included over 5,000 ships, 11,000 airplanes, and over 150,000 service men. By the end of the operation, the Allied Forces had suffered nearly 10,000 casualties; more than 4,000 were dead.

These numbers are mind boggling and can easily become just numbers if we aren’t careful. We are very fortunate that we live very close to the National D-Day Memorial and our visits there have brought home the true meaning of the cost involved.

The memorial has been built to give you a sense of what it was like to be on one of the beaches. There are sculptures of the men as they fought and died trying to manuever across the beach and up the cliffs in order to fight the enemy. Expecting an attack on the beaches, the Germans had built hedgehogs—structures whose sole purpose was to rip apart the bottom of boats if they attempted to reach the beach. The allies were aware of their presence due to the air recons they had been doing. So they were able to avoid these traps by arriving when the water was at low tide.

The memorial is a beautiful tribute to all those who fought for the freedom of others. It is also a reminder that as a nation we have a proud tradition of fighting for the rights of others. But I think it is also important to remember that we were not the sole defenders of this fight.

I thank all those men and women around the world who fought off evil so that we can remain free.