Unexpected Problems: Or, the Story of a Life

unexpectedproblemsToday, right before my next shift was about to begin, my husband came thundering up the stairs. “What’s happening?” he yelled. “A pipe is leaking in the basement!”

Great. Definitely not how I had expected to begin the day.

A pipe in one of our basement rooms had sprung a leak, spraying water over the contents of one of our shelves and the floor. “I need your help, now!” my husband told me. Unfortunately, I couldn’t help him as my work shift would soon begin.

Wonderful.

As with so many problems, this one hadn’t been expected. Not a super-bad problem as in someone going to the hospital, but I was still bummed. Majorly. As the water had been turned off to stop the impromptu basement shower, I began thinking of all the parts of my day that this would affect, everything from flushing the toilet to washing the dishes. Yes, I was instantly down in the dumps. That perspective only deepened when we heard from the plumber that he couldn’t help us until tomorrow. Yup, not what I had planned at all.

My husband continued working downstairs as my own work began online. And my viewpoint–and my mood–began to shift. Luckily, we had caught the problem early, and so no major damage to that room occurred. Too, my husband was there to clean up and prepare the room for the plumber, allowing me to finish my own work upstairs. And by golly, we had prepared for such a problem by having water stored in our home. Yes, I was seeing things a bit differently.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I would have much preferred for that pipe to stay intact this morning. But life has a way of putting bends in our roads, whether a burst pipe or a lost job. This pessimist is trying to think of this particular kink in my plans as a blessing in disguise. We were prepared–somewhat–and we have each other. That certainly doesn’t make me Pollyanna, but it’s a start.

Simple Pleasures

grant in paper box with quoteCats do seem to be wiser than us when it comes to many things. Rest, of course, is high on their list. All kitties seems to be unusually suited to relaxing at any time, depending on their mood and comfort. Stretching their paws leisurely, my cats will often blink their eyes at me as I go about my workday and then relax back into dreamland.

I have begun to wonder if we could learn a few things from our furry friends. After working 60+ hours per week for the past few weeks, I’m tired. I’m just plumb too old for this, I suppose. When I feel the weariness about my eyes even with a constant infusion of coffee on a daily basis, I know I need rest. That and those simple pleasures that we all take for granted as we get older.

I realized this yesterday when I had a bit of “down time” and lay down to read a book for a bit. So relaxed was I that I fell asleep for a quick nap. How I had missed that! Not exciting, that’s for sure, but pleasurable, especially for us old folks.

Life has admittedly become a chore lately. Maybe with a few lessons from my cats–and more time with the Bible–I can take my leisure and find some rest during busy times.

Wishing You a Happy (and Quiet) 4th of July

katnissjuly4thI remember July 4th’s in rural Oklahoma. There would be family gatherings, of course, but the main attraction would always be a parade through town. Folks would start gathering along the parade route ahead of time, always bringing extra drinks and snacks for friends and family. Talk would be easy and full of excitement for the fun that would come. There were no hard words or raised voices, just good times for a small town.

And then the sirens from the volunteer firefighters and the school band! Excitement would build as the fun and noise began. The parade was short, of course, but boisterous and patriotic. Lots of American flags and cute kids and horse riders. Soon, the parade goers were past, and everyone would gather up their lawn chairs and cups so that they could attend family parties with homemade food and lots of prayers.

And in the city? I miss that closeness and emphasis on the reason for the holiday. There are a lot of fireworks and tons of food, but there seems to be very little patriotism.

Perhaps I’m just getting old and sentimental. Now my July 4th is more of a remembrance of the freedom so many fought and died for than a boisterous time. ¬†Too, with lots of furry kiddos, I am needed to calm them through the fireworks. Today–as with so many years–will most likely bring lots of frightened glances from kitties and doggy and desperate attempts on my part to get them through the evening.

My family wishes you a wonderful and happy holiday, but in the midst of the celebrations, spare some time to think of our independence. And if you plan to shoot off fireworks inside city limits, please be respectful of others.

How will you celebrate the holiday? Big parties or quiet times?