Thanks so much to all of you for your kind comments and commiserations. I must say that the "Blackout" week was a truly lovely time. The timing couldn't have been better for me personally (and I do realize that it's all about me). =) Seriously, I had been carrying a bit of stress that was a bit heavier than usual, and it was taking a bit of a toll (not to be confused with a "troll" - although...stress can be a bit trollish at times). Being able to completely disconnect for a while did worlds for my outlook, my emotional state, and my spiritual well-being. Cool, huh? Anyway, it was a wonderful week.
After getting power back on Friday afternoon (at the same time I returned from my trip to the laundromat...grrr...if I had just waited...), I was treated by a visit from my extra special friend, Kimberly. Kimberly was my college roommate for 3 1/2 years (bless her), so we know each other pretty well. What a blessing to be with someone with whom you can truly be yourself! It was so great to spend time with her family as well. Her parents took me in on MANY occasions when I couldn't go home on school breaks because of the distance. They offered me a real "home away from home". (Sounds a bit corny, but it's true.) I have so many incredible memories that involve their family. Anyway, we had a great time together.
I love this pic because Mr. Paul was trying to take our picture with a camera in each hand. I was highly amused at him and Kimberly, well she was being tolerant.
What a special family!
Kimberly's cousin, Janet and her husband, Chuck, also spent part of the day with us. Lots of great stories and many laughs.
A trip to Graeters always brings out the best in people.
And these are pictures from our "non-visit" to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. (We ran out of time, but we did see the gift shop!)
And dinner was at Pompilios (famous for appearing in Rain Man) - great Italian food. Yum. (Kimberly did wonder for just a bit how old the place was...)
The next week we got back to the serious task of educating our students. However, the Fall Picnic was already scheduled for Tuesday, so we took another break to eat outdoors and play softball. (Well some played. I just ate.) I actually work pretty hard setting the up the food for these picnics, so I didn't take many pictures, just a few of the loading process. What is it about guys that makes them want to throw things? Lots of this went on.
I don't really understand...but it makes them happy!
This week has been a week of lessons; a week of reminders that I must lean heavily on my Heavenly Father. I have been reminded of my own frailties and my neediness, but I have also seen my Father's sufficiency and endless wisdom. I am more and more aware that I must let Him live in and through me moment by moment; that I must ABIDE in Him. (No stepping out for a few errands every now and again.) These lessons can pinch a bit, but I am grateful for them. I'm also grateful for reminders of simple love and simple joy. Like this...
Have a happy day!