On this day set aside to be thankful, I want to review the events of the last six weeks, because they give me so much to be thankful for. Some of you have watched these things unfold in real-time on Facebook and Twitter, but it’s worth summarizing here.
Oct 3 – My parents and grandma came to visit. Grandma hadn’t been here to visit Iowa since Laura (now 7) was a baby. It was great to see her.
Oct 3 – The insurance adjuster called and told me that we had hail damage and that insurance would pay for a new roof for the house and garage.
Oct 4 – My sister Rebecca, who had recently rescheduled her wedding from next summer to Nov 5, called to ask if I would play music for the wedding, if Becky would be the matron of honor, and if our girls would be flower girls. Wedding would be held in Seattle.
Oct 6 – While doing some shopping for dresses for the wedding, Becky gets a call from her sister that her Dad has been admitted to the hospital with intestinal issues.
Oct 7 and following – Frenetic planning ensues. My brother Aaron is the master carpenter and construction guy of the family, so I contacted him to see if he had a weekend free to help me re-shingle the roof. He had one weekend free: Oct 14-15. I’m thankful that Aaron and Emily were willing and able to come and help. We couldn’t have done it without them.
I’m also thankful for the patient customer service rep at Nationwide Mortgage who walked me through the claim process and got a check out promptly so that we had time to purchase roofing materials in time for the appointed weekend.
Oct 14 – 15 – Aaron and Emily come down from Wisconsin to help do the roof. We got the house and garage done between Thursday afternoon and Saturday night. Thankful, too, for my buddy Mike who provided a burst of enthusiasm to our roofing project on Saturday morning the 15th. We wouldn’t have gotten it done on Saturday without him. As it was, we finished the ridgeline of the garage roof by flashlight on Saturday night.
Oct 17 – Somewhere around all of this activity, we managed to find a dress for Becky for the wedding at the first store we looked, and we found dresses for the girls within about 2 stores (and a lot of online browsing).
Oct 20 – The prompt mortgage folks sent the check for the remainder of the roof work. The money we saved by doing it ourselves paid for our tickets to fly to Seattle for the wedding.
Oct 22 – Becky’s dad, still in the hospital and trying to recover from two surgeries, had a really good day, and Becky was able to video chat with him in the hospital.
Oct 24 – Becky’s dad passed away. Thankful for our friends Mike and Kirsten who first offered to bring over dinner. When we told them thanks, but that we already had dinner planned, they stopped over unannounced with a half gallon of Coldstone ice cream.
Oct 28 – Becky was able to fly out to North Carolina to be with her family, and all of her siblings were able to be there. I was able to be away from work and stay at home with the girls.
Oct 31 – Becky’s dad’s memorial service, and I took the girls around trick-or-treating… such fun!
Nov 1 – Becky got home… for which we were all very thankful.
Nov 2 – Packing like crazy.
Nov 3 – 9 AM flight out of the Moline airport. Thankful for the friendly guy we met in the terminal who was flying with two dozen Casey’s donuts and shared a few with us. Thankful, too, for the friendly airline agent who got our seats rearranged so that we were all together on the plane.
Nov 5 – Rebecca’s wedding. Beautiful. Sounds funny to say it, but thankful for the Unitarian Universalists whose standards were low enough that they would let my sister have her wedding there on short notice. (She imported a Baptist pastor to do the ceremony.) Beautiful little chapel. Also thankful that KP the grumpy flower girl stayed quiet on my lap while I played music in the middle of the ceremony.
Nov 7 – Thankful that we got to hang out with Andrew and Heather for a day before we all had to go home. We don’t get to see them too often.
Nov 8 – Flew home. Again, the flights were super-smooth. Thankful for a kids’ play area at the DFW airport right next to our gate on our layover. Also thankful that we could hit Cracker Barrel for dinner after getting in to Moline.
Nov 9 – Back to work.
Nov 19 – Thankful for a pastor who read my blog post about being brain-full and soul-hungry, and rather than preaching at me, bought me a book by one his favorite contemplatives. I’m going to read it this weekend.
Nov 20 – Back on Worship Team, with a good new song that we got to do again as the post-closer. That last time felt like it was just for us, the team. It was amazing.
Nov 24 – at home with the family for Thanksgiving. Thankful for a couple of weeks where we’ve been able to catch up and recover a bit.
We’ve been so blessed by God’s faithfulness to us. For each thing listed here there were a dozen little things that I’m forgetting. He is good, and I am thankful.