There was a time in my life when Sunday evenings were fraught with angst. The weekend so close to ending. A new school week or work week impending. Now, as a self-employed writer I have more ambiguous feelings about a Sunday evening. The angst is gone because my time belongs to me.
I write all through the week, taking breaks when I feel the need, and I often forget what day it is. If Studly Doright weren’t still employed full time I’d likely forget the days altogether.
Speaking of Studly Doright, he still has the Sunday evening angst. Two more years and he too can forget what day it is.
Where are you on the continuum? Still dreading Monday morning or blissfully unaware? The Mamas & The Papas had some thoughts on that.
I slipped outside last Sunday afternoon, too restless for a nap, too lazy to do laundry. Leaving the quiet air-conditioned comfort of our home for the heavy, humid Florida air I was temporarily sightless as my glasses fogged over. Mole-like, I stumbled up the driveway.
There was no purpose to my walk as I left the confines of Doright Manor and slowly trudged through the neighborhood, but I was struck as always by the abundance of foliage. A product of the semi-arid Texas panhandle where relatively few trees grow, I’m constantly amazed by the variety and the vigor of my surroundings.
Studly Doright and I do not live in a prettily manicured housing development. When we moved to Tallahassee we steered clear of what I’ve come to call “cookie cutter” neighborhoods. I don’t mean that term to be derogatory. Indeed, our home in Melbourne, Florida, was in such an area, and we appreciated the continuity of architecture and the strict guidelines that kept the community pristine.
This time, though, we knew we’d most likely be settling into retirement in this home, and Studly wanted a separate garage for the storage and care of his motorcycles. Most home owners’ associations won’t approve that sort of project, so we opted for a more loosely governed neighborhood.
We still have a neighborhood covenant with strict building guidelines, though. For example, the brick, roof, and windows on the shop had to precisely match our home, and we (meaning Studly) had to pore over tons of paperwork until he had the request for building approval worded just right.
And if the yards aren’t kept in a reasonably acceptable manner residents receive a nasty gram from the powers that be. So far we’ve managed to live up to our end of the bargain. So as I walked up our tree-shaded lane I noted one home in serious need of attention:
Several months back I stopped and spoke with the elderly woman who lived here. Her husband was in poor health and she was lonely. We visited for awhile and I gave her my address. I encouraged her to call if she needed me.
Well, not long after her husband passed away and her family placed her in a nursing home. My heart goes out to her. I can easily imagine Studly and me going through the same trials someday in the future.
I’m not so worried about neighborhood aesthetics, except our next door neighbor is trying to sell her home, and the neglected one down the street probably doesn’t help her efforts.
Not much I can do, but I have offered my services to help spruce the place up if we get the go ahead. It’s a tough thing–no one wants to step on anyone else’s toes.
I snapped a few more photos of our quiet neighborhood as I walked and perspired under the Florida sun. Now I need a shower!
falling out of practice, of silencing alarms and stumbling to the shower of matching shoes to skirt and scarf to blouse, willy nilly dash to desk days run neck and neck galloping for the checkered flag, no, the finish line where clocks are punched morning and evening, and mondays aren’t mistaken for tuesdays or heaven forbid, fridays. appointments keep their allotted places and there is no need to ask, “what day is this?”
In the real world I have a lovely friend who has a gift. Janie Christie Heniford writes the most beautiful, inspirational, heart warming posts and shares them on Facebook during the month of November.
I look forward to these posts. They make me laugh, cry, think, and nod my head in ardent agreement. Today I asked if she’d be okay with me sharing her post on Praying for Eyebrowz. Of course then I wondered if I was savvy enough to do that.
To my delight, Janie consented. Now let’s see if I can get this done. I’ll be sure to share any comments with Janie. It’s a real pleasure to share Janie’s gift with my readers. Enjoy. And as always, peace, people.
Janie Christie Heniford at Sooner Lake
I am thankful today, for changes. Changes of all kinds, actually. Circumstances. location, mind, weather, leadership, looks, understanding, time, hairstyles, position, jobs, almost everything.
One of the first times that i can remember thinking about how things change is when i was a young girl. To join the Christian church, one of the things asked of me by our pastor, is, “are you willing to give as much of yourself as you know and understand, to as much of God as you know and understand?”. I was smart enough to realize that i might not know every SINGLE thing in the world, but I thought that I knew God. I did. I knew all that my sweet and untried young self could really know. I grew to realize, of course, that one’s walk with God is dynamic, in as much as our experiences and understanding of life are dynamic.
When Rick and I decided to retire to Oklahoma, we chose it mostly to be near our family, but also because of the seasons here. We found that we missed the definite four seasons. Our circumstances will change some with retirement, a fixed income, a lower income, and hopefully (this is the plan anyway) lower expenses.
Over the years our health will change, our abilities will change, absolutely our looks will change. It’s all a good thing. It is likely that I will never love the storms here, but as we have weathered the storms in our lives, we will stand fast in the storms here. We will be prepared. We will take precautions. I will learn to accept them as part of my life. Today as I was out driving, I noticed that I was following right beside the back end of a front. The clouds further out were ominous, but the ones up close were breaking up, beginning to let light through, and a much different pattern than the clouds further out. Closer they held the promise of sunshine, and beauty. Further out they threatened storms.
Our lives surely don’t follow a line that is clearcut like a front line. The clouds of life are different day to day, and minute to minute, and the shapes that change are our own. I imagined today, as i watched the clouds, even took pictures of them as they spoke so deeply to me, that maybe that is part of what I have learned about God. There are storms, and there are fresh new beginnings. There must be changes wrought within as we battle the storms, to allow the fresh new starts to come through.
Yep. Sometimes i figure things out when i travel alone. I’m a lucky, lucky girl to have that opportunity.