What an absolutely beautiful day today! The sky was the perfect shade of blue, with those big cartoon-like puffy clouds that every elementary school kid draws when they're told to draw a picture and they put the sky in the background (you know, the kind that the rainbow climbs to and from when it's not ending in a pot of gold?) The heat and humidity were perhaps just as oppressive as they were yesterday, but I spent much more of the day indoors than I did yesterday, so I feel more refreshed. I am more than a little certain that air conditioning is a gift from God.
We went to church today for the first time since I can't remember when. It's always nice to go back and have that familiarity after a long time away. I think it's been a couple of months, or something along those lines. On the way to the restroom, a lady saw me and did a double take, and asked, "Did I just see you in RENT?" To which I smiled and affirmed, and told her my husband was also in it. She and I introduced ourselves, and after she left, I said to my daughter, "That's another thing I love about our church -- people here see things like RENT, and actually enjoy them!" It's the largest group of non-judgmental Christians I think I've ever encountered all at the same time. Does wonders for my faith in humanity, secondary only to my faith in God.
After we got home, I made chicken alfredo and homemade garlic toast for an early dinner, then took a walk with Aria around the subdivision and back. I finally figured out how to program the universal garage door opener that my friend Danny bought for me so that I can avoid zombies overtaking me on my way to the car in the morning when it's dark. Laugh at me if you must, but I'll be the one safely backing out of my driveway while the zombies eat your brain instead, punk. I picked up all the sticks in the backyard while Steve took a nap because he said he'd mow when he woke up. He likes to mow. I don't get in the way, even though I also like to mow, because it's one of the rare times he enjoys being outdoors. I caught up on the rest of the laundry and did my devotional reading for the day. Getting back to this blog -- and the rest of my 'real life' -- is so wonderful it's almost unbelievable!
I finished reading "Plain Secrets" by Joe Mackall. There were parts that I enjoyed, but much of it seemed pointless and rather redundant. Mackall has a tendency to repeat himself using almost the same sentence he did before. I don't think it was so much to reiterate a point as it was that he didn't remember he'd already written about that particular thing and didn't have a good editor, if that makes sense. The book was sort of perfunctory. It started well and gave a basic delineation of different kinds of Amish sects, and then focused on one extended family that he knew personally because they were neighbors. It discussed the leaving of the Amish through one of the neighbor's extended family members, and gave periodic updates throughout the book. It discussed the death of the neighbor's oldest child. It swayed back and forth between whether the author respected or detested Amish life. No actual theme was established and it was pretty disjointed. I wouldn't recommend it, even though I didn't really hate it. I just thought that on the surface it looked intriguing and once I read for awhile, it became ... not tedious, just boring.
This week I'll be organizing my junk for a garage sale next week. School starts on Thursday the 19th. The kids are a mixture of sad and excited at the same time, which I remember poignantly. I'm waiting for that feeling or scent or chill in the air in the morning. It happens every year and when it hits me, I'm slapped in the face with nostalgia. Going school-supply shopping with my mom, raking leaves, getting ready for Hallowe'en, watching my grandpa peel an apple in one long strand, opening my first packed lunch of the year -- a jumble of images fly through my head on that morning each year, and I love it. In that moment I feel like I am young enough that my whole future is ahead of me, vibrant and energetic enough to take on the rest of the day, and old enough that I hope my kids have the same feeling when they're adults and that it's as enjoyable to them as it is to me.
Our daughter has a pretty nasty sunburn from the Pulse Festival yesterday. We made a special trip to the Dollar General before we left so that we could get sunscreen, too. The problem is, sunscreen is like a gym membership. Having it doesn't do you any good, it's USING it that matters.
Now I have to find something new to read. I've missed out on most of garage sale season this year, sadly -- so not a lot of new books were added to our library. That's both a blessing and a curse -- I don't have enough bookshelves for the ones we have, but I also can't get rid of some of the books that Steve owns that he will never, ever, ever, ever, ever read to make room for new ones. And, to go back to the beginning of this paragraph, I also have nothing new to read.
The dogs are so happy to see us lately they don't know what to do with themselves. Every time we look like we're about to leave, they have that forlorn look on their faces like, "Yeah, we know. It's work and then theatre and we'll see you for five minutes tomorrow" and then when we get back in a few minutes instead of a few hours, they're ecstatic. I'm not sure if teenagers or dogs are more emotional. I'll have to do some polling on that and get back to you.
I'd keep writing, but I have nothing more to say right now -- I know, that's crazy talk, right!? Hope that you had as wonderful of a weekend as I did, and that the week ahead brings us all much joy.