I am writing this Quick Takes a day early … no, two days early! But my thanks to Jen, who might not even see this, since I’m going to be WAY to busy to actually post the link at her place! LOL!
- It’s here! My baby girl is going to receive her First Holy Communion on Sunday!! I cannot tell you how completely happy this makes me! In fact, I walked into Mass last Sunday, saw that three children were receiving at that Mass, and promptly started crying. “It’s not even the right week, and I’m a mess!” I sniffled to Travel Man. Little Girl just glowed happiness at her classmates as they received the Body and Blood of Christ. She, too, is happy. Happy for them, happy for herself. It’s almost here! Sunday, 9:00 Mass, here in southwest Virginia. And have we got FAMILY coming in! If the visiting priest (our pastor is going to be away this weekend) is available, I’ll have as many as 25 people here – at my house – for brunch. Wow. But all of the grandparents will be here, plus my own Nana, plus Travel Man’s brother (and his wife and son), plus our friends from Northern Virginia and their five kids, plus another family we’ve invited over. It’s going to be quite crowded.
- While this whole event is making me insanely happy, I feel a twinge of sadness, too. At this time, and unless God changes this by leading us more strongly towards adoption, I will not have any more First Communions to look forward to. Once again, I find myself having to forcefully remind myself that I have been forgiven for that sin. If God can’t remember, why is it that I can’t forget?
- It’s been a crazy couple of weeks around here. My dishwasher died last September, and we hadn’t fixed it, and rather than pay for someone to do that for me, I decided to ditch it and ask Travel Man to put in those cabinets. They are BEAUTIFUL! (No, I haven’t posted pictures yet. Maybe next week.) But while he was installing them, fixing the counter heights (don’t ask), etc., he noticed something that I hadn’t been complaining about much. The kitchen sink was leaking, and making a HUGE mess underneath. Nasty mess. Disgusting mess. So he said, “Call a plumber and get someone out here to fix it. And while the plumber’s here, see if they might be able to figure out why there isn’t enough hot water to wash all the dishes or take two showers in a row.” (Or fill my garden tub, by the way.)
So I did. I called a plumber, and he came yesterday. Looked under the sink, poked around by the (20 year old, barely working on one heating element and thermostat) hot water heater, and gave me an estimate. (Yikes, what an estimate!) New pipes, new water heater, and this morning, Travel Man took a shower and I washed dishes – at the same time – and we didn’t run out of hot water. <
For five years, I’ve wanted to use that big Jacuzzi garden tub and haven’t been able to fill it up. Now I can, and I promise you that it’s going to be used. SOON.
- We’ve gotten a bit of a heads-up that Travel Man might not be such a traveling man, which eliminates the need for the company to provide him with a car. Thus, we’ve saved our tax return money and some extra to buy a car. While working down that debt. (We can see the end of the tunnel!) When I called with the estimate, we knew we could afford it, even if it puts our car savings back a couple of months. But we could do it – and pay cash. We could not have done this a year ago. Two years ago, my girls wanted to take a homeschool workshop on American Girls books. I had to come up with $20 for them to take the class. I had trouble doing THAT. And yet I laid out cash for a plumber to put in all that work for me. Mind you, we’ll have to work hard to put some money back to save up again for that car (which, thank God, we don’t need to get immediately!), but the main point is that it was there. Travel Man works with a guy who gave us Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover book, just when we needed it most, and that book has changed our life. I know I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again. If you are having financial problems, even if you think you’re beyond hope, you need to read that book and get on the TMT plan. If you stick with it, it will work. And it’s simple. But you have to be ready for an honest assessment of your finances, as painful as that might seem. Think of it like ripping off a band-aid. But as bad-off as our family was at the beginning of 2008, we haven’t touched a credit card (except to shred them) since January 2008.
I just might kiss that guy who gave us that book. I cannot thank him enough.
- Ever take things more personally than you should? Like, you’re busy, you know other people are, too, but when you don’t hear from someone in a while, you start to think you’ve done something wrong? You know what I’ve learned? Mostly, you’ve done nothing, and they aren’t upset with you.
Just busy. Chill out, already!
- Our Great Adventure Bible Study is going really well. When we read Numbers for the last unit (this week – tonight, as a matter of fact – we are studying Joshua), I was reminded about this post from Jen’s blog. When the Israelites arrived near the Promised Land, Moses sent one man from each tribe to scope things out. They came back, and only two of them trusted God enough that they knew they could overcome the people in the land. The other ten spread fear throughout the camps, and the people lost hope in God. They started losing faith that He would deliver their enemies to them. And so they balked at going in. In response to this, God told them that they obviously needed a longer time-out (a year a Sinai wasn’t enough, apparently), and that they now couldn’t enter the Promised Land until 40 years had passed. That they would die in the desert, just as they feared and continued to lament. (“Why did God lead us out here? To die in the desert?”) This, naturally, prompted the Israelites to act like children who have just been told that they are going to have their toys thrown out if they don’t pick them up. When we finally get in there with the trash bag, suddenly there is an urgency. “I’ll pick up! Here, look!! Don’t touch that! I’ve got it!!!” But it’s too late. The Israelites went off to battle, while Moses warned them not to because God would not be with them now. Slaughter. Then they wandered for 40 years (one year for each day of reconnoissance), where they had to learn to trust God for their provisions. Mind you, we’re no better than this, but there you go.
Anyway, this whole lesson for the Israelites was one in trust. Do not fear! The Lord loves you, and He is with you! He will provide for you!! Look, he knows you’re hungry, and He gives you bread from Heaven. He sees you are thirsty, and water comes from the rock. God loves you.
Do not fear!
- As always, I want to finish with a video for you. This is especially for my Little Girl. Enjoy! Have a blessed week!