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2005-09-05 11:02 PM
Who dares stand idle, on the harvest plain
While all around him waves the golden grain?
And to each servant does the Master say,
“Go work today.”
We all worked hard around here today, but everyone’s labors were quite different from one another. A snapshot…
R and I had a day of fun around the theme, “RM is Nesting and Sick of the Disarray.” We picked a few simple projects that, once completed, would make us feel good, and tackled them. There is so much to be done around our fixer-upper that we often despair to even start, but the fact is, there are places in our house that just aren’t so comfy to spend time in.
Some of the projects were really stupidly small, like changing the light bulb above the kitchen sink—but I’m ashamed to tell you how long it’s been burned out.
We had recently gotten a good deal on some used Billy bookshelves from IKEA, and we finally repaired them and “populated” them with various things, which relieved the clutter off many other bookshelves. (Cue the George Carlin routine on “stuff” here.)
R changed out our A/C filter which for various idiosyncratic reasons is more than a 10-minute job.
Most significantly for me, I got rid of the God-awful living and dining room drapes that are leftovers from the previous residents. Lord have mercy, I despised them; I don’t know why I let them hang there for so long. How do I hate them? You cannot measure it with existing technology. But they’re gone now.
As far as we still have to go on certain projects, I was filled with gratitude that we have a comfortable home when others do not today, and I feel humbled by how often I take that for granted.
I also thought a lot about my aunt, who was always doing something wonderful with her home. She really had a flair for it and the patience to go the distance to make her condo look nice. Judging from my morning conversation with my mom, my aunt was laboring on this Labor Day as well. Dying is hard, grueling work, when one is relatively young and when most of the body’s systems are still working properly. I got off the phone and cried, which I think is the first time I’ve really cried in front of C since she’s been old enough to react to it. How does one handle that? It used to scare me to see my mother cry, but maybe it’s because it was so rare. Anyway, I told her that I was OK, I just felt sad, but it wasn’t anything she had done, I was sad because Aunt S was sick and MaDear was sad. She seemed to accept it and gave me hugs and a drink of water.
Speaking of C, she worked hard at being a 2 1/2 year old today, which seems to be incredibly hard work. She was working on an overdue poop, which made her cranky all day… finally, tonight, success! It’s the little things with little ones. The stammer was out in full force today, but she was unbothered by it, so we were too. She read, watched us work, and enacted elaborate plays with her two stuffed bunnies—gave them snack (complete with bibs and plastic bowls), changed their “diapers,” and so on.
Tonight we celebrated the end of a long day with grilled salmon and cucumber salad on the patio, which threatened to break C’s brain, although in a delighted way: “You’re going to move my high chair outside?!?”
Toward the end of the meal, C got a sudden serious look on her face and said, “I have tears.” Indeed she looked as if she was about to cry. We asked what was wrong but she was unable to tell us.
A few minutes later my mother called to say that my aunt had died.
Who knows, my friends, who knows. But that was Labor Day.
Who Thee by faith before the world confessed,
Thy Name, O Jesus, be forever blessed.
(Both quotes are from hymns that can be found in the Presbyterian hymnal and other Protestant worship books.)
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