What We’re Doing this Summer…

What’s Happening with Us…

What on earth have we been doing? We’ve been selling and moving for months already! Aren’t we gone yet? No, we aren’t. Here’s what’s been happening in the past few weeks of relative silence:

  • The husband has been finishing up his last weeks at American Aldes Ventilation. They finally realize he is leaving and are asking him questions and scrambling to learn the things he will not be doing for them anymore
  • About half of our “things” got boxed and put in a container that is stored someplace in Tampa.
  • Packing has continued as I empty out closets, dressers, cupboards and the garage.
  • Keeping the house “showing” ready in case an interested buyer comes our way. We’ve had two open houses, both of which had 0 visitors. Really. Everyone is up north I guess.
  • We have been using up our food supply, giving some things away, sold the freezer. (Now we’ll hopefully leave before we get a hurricane so we don’t have to restock.)
  • Sold my car, and traded our red truck for a newer Chevy Colorado in a sophisticated grey.
  • Ordered a topper to go with the new-to-us truck to give us space for the move. They take weeks to make and getting it put on will probably be the last thing before we leave.
  • Spending lots of time driving around together, since I love to drive the new truck and am not letting the husband get behind the wheel.
  • Doing our last visits to doctors and dentists, compiling our health records to take north with us.
  • Keeping up with summer growth in the yard, mowing, pulling weeds and vines, trimming trees.
  • Visiting with friends we may not see again for quite a while.
  • Last but not least, trying to keep healthy and find our way out of some disturbing health problems.

 

What we hope to be doing in the next few weeks:

Dennis Retirement  (Click here to see the invitation with a nice picture of the husband. I’m technically challenged to get it to show up, sorry.)

  • Retirement party!!! I am so excited to see the husband getting honored by his co-workers. He has been faithfully on the job for 35 years and has been through a lot with this company. They have been planning a special lunch out at a restaurant and a surprise. I have no idea what it is.
  • Making an appointment at Mayo Clinic. The husband is frustrated and depressed with his erratic blood pressure and extreme mental and physical fatigue. He has had a brain MRI and tests for his heart and circulation but no helpful diagnosis yet. Ever heard of NPH? We hadn’t either but it is one of the possibilities.
  • Emptying out the house. Filling our container and returning it to storage until someday when we have another house to furnish.
  • Buying a small trailer for the things we want to take north.
  • Taking our trip to Wisconsin, via Greensboro to see Julie and possibly Madison, Indiana to check out Ron and Marlene’s project (this is the first they’re hearing about this though, so we will be flexible on that.)
  • We absolutely have to be finished traveling and in Wisconsin by the end of July because the first week in August is the Smith Family Reunion and we are going to be there helping it happen!

 

So a lot has been happening, even as some important things, like the sale of the house, have not been happening.  We are learning and practicing our waiting skills. And since it doesn’t make much difference where we wait, we will do it with family. We are not discouraged. The house will sell, eventually.

And We Wait…

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Yep, that’s our house.

Life is strange now. I want to be out of Florida before hurricane season, but I’m horrified by the finality of a sale and having no home. It has taken so long to get ready and yet something about it seems to have happened so fast it’s scary.  Hurry up and wait is an accurate description of what has happened.

Having a house for sale means we are in a state of constant tension. Showings are requested at random times, and of course we don’t want to say no so we must be ready. Part of the tension is being ready and then having nothing happen when it seems that something should be happening, or being ready and full of anticipation only to have the showing cancelled. It seems to happen frequently.

We’re eating out a lot. People want to see the house over lunch or dinner time when they are free, so we make the house presentable, turn on all the lights and make sure the AC is going, then we vacate so as not to interfere. The logical place to go? A restaurant where we can sit and eat and not mess anything up in the kitchen at home. It works for every reason except our so called “diet”. We have pretty much left that behind for the time being.

Last night we went to the local diner, “The Recipe Box”, during a showing and I was feeling a bit frazzled. I noticed immediately the relaxing music – soft jazz, recognizable songs, like at a piano bar. It was such a different sound from normal restaurant background music, because it was live with a real person playing a keyboard. She played during our whole meal and it was a gift from God to my house selling soul. She was so good that I bought her CD. There were only a few of us having dinner and we all clapped and commented on the songs.

The immediate result of all this showing is that we find out new reasons why people don’t want to buy our house. They have reservations about getting their RV down the one lane drive, reservations about the kind of neighborhood we’re in, reservations about whether they could remodel the way they would “have to”.  Hmm… I don’t remember having any reservations when I moved here. I thought it was heaven on earth and could hardly believe it would be my new home. Was there something wrong with me? Thankfully, most who have looked have felt it was unique and fairly priced.

At this point, I can honestly say that I’m not upset about waiting. I am expectant of something interesting, and happy, and good. I fully trust that the process was started by God, in his timing and we’ll be looking back on it at some point and marveling at how it came about. Something is going to happen. I can hardly wait. No, wait, I am waiting. Whatever…

How to make four hours go fast…

It’s not a statement,  it’s a question. I’m all settled in at this big airport, at the place I think I’m supposed to catch the shuttle to my final destination. It doesn’t arrive for another four hours, and when it does we’ll have a three hour ride farther north. I’m tired of sitting which is about all I’ve done since leaving home at 7 this morning. 

But, it’s been a safe, uneventful flight.  Every time I dig for something in my backpack I’m enveloped in this heavenly smell of essential oil that has evidently been leaking in there somewhere. And believe me, I am so glad it’s the one that does smell heavenly rather than the one purported to smell like cat pee. Small blessings.

Growing up, I had no idea that I lived somewhere called “remote”. We seldom went anywhere farther than our 60 mile trip to get school clothes in the nearest town with a department store. But school away from home changed all that.

 And as time wore on, the girl from the north, in school down south (Texas), met a man from the east (Pennsylvania) and moved west (California), before coming back home to Wisconsin for a few years. I live in Florida and am afraid to guess what part of the U.S. is going to be next. I don’t know whether to say the world has gotten bigger or smaller. 

When I fly I look down at the land below. Although this is a very big country, it seems to be pretty full of people. All the habitable space is divided up into squares or circles with clusters of dwellings at every intersection. At night, I see towns dotting the darkness everywhere I look. During the day we fly between cities so sprawling and large that it scares me. Our ancestors could not have imagined this. And I cannot imagine the future.

I guess I’ve talked myself into being thankful for a destination that’s still three hours from a major city. It’s gotten bigger (but not much) and there’s more traffic but it is still beautifully remote and it’s home to many family members and friends, making it even more beautiful. 

Two and a half hours to go… just sayin’.

Wait a minute… March 2015

from themedicinejournal.com

Today I am gladly embracing the state of “waiting”.  There is a tension involved in waiting for things that could actually drive me to be unhappy or frustrated, but I think it is also possible to just relax and pay attention to what happens when I’m waiting. Some good things happen.

I start listening with an eagerness to hear.  Listening to everything that might have a message.  Kind of like heightened awareness.

I rest more.  There is resting and there is acting, and of course, there is a time for both things. Rest is an absolutely necessary preparation for whatever comes next.  So if I rest while I’m waiting I’m doing something important.  Waiting is not the same as doing nothing.

The ability to wait calmly and purposefully is helpful and reassuring to others.  It’s kind of the opposite of panic and drama, which on an occasional basis is entertaining, but who likes that as a regular diet?  Not me.

In searching for something to do with my mind while waiting, I find some different, creative thoughts popping into existence.

The very definition of waiting implies that something has not yet happened.  There is hope in that and I love hope.   I choose to think chances are high that the next happening will be a good one.  Deciding to be positive, and expecting the positive adds to the chances for a good outcome.

Waiting is, in a sense, empowering.  I recently had a circumstance that was pretty much out of my control. But I still had the power to wait well or to wait poorly.  Waiting poorly is such a waste of energy and emotion – oh my goodness!  I’ve done that too and there was absolutely no benefit from it.

I think I was meant to learn through waiting.  Every time I have waited on God, for his answers, I have learned something valuable about him. And here again is the part about hope – God seems so unknowable at times and yet when I wait I end up knowing more and trusting more.   There are all kinds of examples of this in Biblical narrative.  Can you imagine waiting until you are in your nineties to have a baby – and then having it happen?  Yeah.

Right now I am waiting on a number of things, of varying importance. I’m just saying that it is perfectly okay to be waiting.

(No, I am not thinking of having another baby. Don’t even go there.)