Today began rather early, for a Sunday.
I woke up at about 8:30 or so… and everyone was sleeping, but I wanted to get up for two reasons. First, I needed to mow, and I knew it was going to be HOT… so the earlier the better! Second, our neighbors were shipping out at 9:30, and I wanted to be there to say good bye. 🙂
So, I got up, threw on some grubs, grabbed the iPod, and headed out to mow at about 8:45. (If you know me, you know how insane that is.)
I got the back yard done just as our neighbors emerged to pack their van to leave. They loaded up very fast… said a quick good bye (they were VERY excited about this trip! I think they have been packed for three months…) and drove off. I got back to my mowing – and sweating… – and finished a bit before ten o’clock.
I came inside a bit confused. So many possibilities for the day… but which to do? I needed to seed many parts of our yard. I had a few flower beds to spruce up. I needed to clean out our van. Bad. And beyond that, I had a few fun ideas, like going to visit a nearby waterfall! Or, going to lunch with Jen’s brother and family, and some other friends before spending a little time at the Apple Store in the mall (and other shopping errands). SO MUCH TO DO… SO LITTLE TIME.
After a brief – albeit heated – conversation with Jen, I settled on just cleaning out one flower bed (out front) and calling it a day on the work side of things. It just felt like it needed to be a family day.
After cleaning up, and just hanging out with Jen for a while (that was SO GREAT!) we checked out that lunch plan with friends and family. Found out that wasn’t going to be just what we though it would be so… we decided on plan B for lunch. Reheated burgers and hot dogs from yesterday’s party! Whoohoo! 🙂 I did make fresh home-made french fries, though…
As we were eating our lunch, I heard a pretty rare knock at the door. I quickly jumped up to see who it was, and was a bit surprised to find our neighbor, Mrs. Button, standing there with a smile on her face. I opened the door and invited her in. After a brief chat she asked if I might help her move a couch into her apartment. “Absolutely!” I said.
And the adventure began.
Since my neighbor, Matt, was gone, I needed to find another capable young man to assist me in this furniture moving. I knocked on the door of one such person … but to no avail. They were gone for the day. Then I tried the other side of our house… but alas, no response to my knock. I called up a friend who loves to help with stuff like this. He was headed out the door for a business trip. So I walked up a couple houses to another neighbor’s house to see if he might be able to help.
Petr came to the door and after a brief reintroduction (we have had many more chats with his wife than with him… so I decided to introduce myself again) he said he could certainly help. Yes! Finally someone is available!
I went back to tell Mrs. Button that she would have her couch in about 15 minutes or so, and ended up spending most of that 15 minutes talking with her about all sorts of stuff. She seems a bit lonely. She was happy to talk about anything and everytihng. And I was happy to listen. 🙂
Petr was now available, so we began moving the couch from two houses down to Mrs. Button’s apartment. It was around 90ºF, and VERY humid, so after 5 steps we were both sweathing profusely. And, Mrs. Button is … “a collector”. 🙂 Her apartment was quite full. Even more full than my Grandma, who is famous for being a pack rat. 🙂 So we re-arranged, jostled, and squeezed in this fairly large couch.
When our work was done, we said good bye to Mrs. Button, and headed to our homes. Petr stayed a bit at our yard – tossing the football with our boys – and just chatting about what he does, what we do. We haven’t gotten to do that in four years of living just around the corner from each other. It was very nice.
As we were chatting, Mr. Anderson drives up with his two girls. I excuse myself from the football-tossing conversation to say hello to the Anderson clan. Petr says good bye, and we pick up a chat about computers, kids, and ice cream with Mr. Anderson and company. Turns out I should be able to help them with a Mac purchase. And… after comparing schedules, we figured out that we would be able to take their girls to Chill & Grill for some ice cream later that evening. (We had been wanting to do that as an extra thank you for being awesome baby sitters for us!) 🙂
We said good bye, and as I walked back to our house, I said to Jen sitting on the porch… “I feel like a neighbor!” 🙂 What a great day of connecting with all of the people around us… helping each other out, and just enjoying each other’s company!!!
And it wasn’t done!!!
A storm rolled in, so we thought it would be fun to play a game or two out on the front porch while listening to the thunder and rain. Turned out to be a bit of a dud, but the games were fun! And on one short break where we went in to get a snack, I realized that if I was going to make pizza for dinner… I better get started! Well, I also realized that it might be early enough to invite someone to join us for that home-made pizza dinner.
Why not our neighbors from around the corner? 🙂
We’ve tried a couple times to have a meal with them, but has never worked out with their schedule… but today was different! They could come!!! So I popped the pizza dough in the oven to rise, and we tried to finish our game before they came.
The next hour went quickly, and we saw them pop around the corner, and start heading for our house. I went in to get the pizza started and everyone began filing in. (They are a family of 6 also!) We made some great looking pizzas, had some great conversation, and really had a great time connecting with these new-ish friends. There are some fun connections. They have a son born just a few HOURS before Julia was. At the same hospital. And, they were due the same date as well. Crazy. Also, Petr’s wife was the daughter of a preacher man – just like my Jen. 🙂
So, we had a great meal with them… and then shared some ice cream sundaes that they brought along. It was a great evening shared with new friends.
As they were getting ready to go, we were too. Turns out… we weren’t done! We had made ice cream plans… remember?? 🙂
(Yes… we still went, even after having ice cream with Petr and his family…) 🙂
So, we headed up to the Baptist church to meet up with the Anderson girls. We were a tad early, but headed inside to see what was going on. They weren’t quite done, so we stalled a bit… until I felt almost “rude” just standing outside their building, not coming in to join them. So, Ian and I went in and sat down to listen. They were talking about big faith in God, like David vs. Goliath. One guy shared a story about how (at God’s leading) he was able to provide financial help to a family he knew – even though he was not in a financial position to do so – and how God gave that right back to him within a couple days! When they were done, I told a similar story of how God had done that for us! He’s so good when we trust him, and do what he leads us to do.
We headed out with our babysitters to Chill & Grill. The skies were ominous… rain was surely coming. But, we went (on foot) anyway.
It was a nice walk, filled with many foot races between several different runners. There were also multiple winners. Lots of fun. Mr. Anderson (baby sitters’ Dad) joined us after we were most of the way there, as he had noticed that the rain had begun, and well… he’s a good Dad. 🙂 He ended up driving everyone but me home. (I walked back in the rain, looking for a dropped baby shoe…) 🙂
The ice cream was great. The conversation and connecting with friends/neighbors was even better. What a great day of that!!!!
After finishing our game from earlier – which DAD won!!! – we showered up… then Mom & Dad watched a little TV… and then Mom headed to bed!
And then I wrote a blog or two. 🙂
Looong – but INCREDIBLY FUN – day. Thanks for sharing it with me on this virtual page. 🙂