About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Thursday, February 04, 2010

How much sleep does one woman need?

If you’re on Facebook and read my early post yesterday about the Automation Labs conspiracy, one of my friends sent me the link to Snopes. It’s false. It is a measure of how lousy I’ve felt that I did not automatically run it through Snopes as I would have, had it come to me via email.

On to happier topics. After breakfast yesterday, I went back to bed. And slept another five hours. When I woke up, I made myself another unleaded toddy. While I was scooping out the nearly-solid honey, I remembered where I had gotten it. It was a parting gift from Brother Stilts when he moved back to Missouri in June 2003. So there is [brotherly] love in every bite. No wonder I am (slowly) getting better!

I’ve mentioned the home teaching and visiting teaching programs of the church. In home teaching, two brethren are assigned a number of families to visit each month. In visiting teaching, two sisters are assigned a number of adult women to visit each month. In both cases, the assigned teachers are to take a spiritual message and to determine if there are any needs to fill (not in the spirit of snooping, but in the spirit of applied Christianity). At one time, Brother Stilts and NintendoMan and I were all in the same ward. And NintendoMan was Brother Stilts’ home teacher. He remembers him fondly and was sad to hear of his death.

Happy stuff. I said happy stuff. OK: I can breathe now! Mostly. Tuesday was all about the sneezing. Yesterday was all about the coughing. Today is about ...???

I got my “please save this for your taxes” letter from Doctors without Borders. Not a huge amount of money on my part, but I certainly could not have written one check for it. So easy to say, “what can one person do?” So easy, even on what I laughingly call my budget, to have a few dollars per month taken out of my account before I notice it, just as I do with my savings accounts and my 401K deductions. If there is something you are passionate about, find a way to help them. You may not have money to give, but you might have time to volunteer. Or you may have no time, but you might have an extra $10 a month that would just end up on your hips. Ya know?

One of my goals, when I was in my early 20’s, probably after I was baptized and the world was no longer about me-me-me, was to get a gallon pin from the Red Cross. Hepatitis in 1979 put paid to that. Maybe next year, after I am out of debt, I can start sending them a little cash every month. Or maybe, when I am released as RS president in my ward, I can volunteer at a Carter Blood Care blood drive, handing out cookies and orange juice. Or maybe both.

I am so proud of my kids who are able to give blood, and do. It is such a lovely, unselfish gift.

When I took the pizza out of the oven for lunch yesterday, this was what greeted me. You bake the pizzas at 450°F. And according to Ray Bradbury, paper burns at 451°F. I think I was cutting it a little close, don’t you?

Barb over on HappySimple asks a good question: “Does everything really happen for a reason?” I used to think that the Universe ran like clockwork, that A caused B, which led to C, and that if I consistently made good choices, I would be good-enough to be let into Heaven when I died (and drag my family, kicking and screaming, in after me). That theory blew apart when Bad Thing after Bad Thing after Bad Thing happened in our family, we, who were trying so hard to color inside the lines and be truly righteous, and not merely self-righteous (which is way, way easier, if you hadn’t already figured that out for yourselves). Which led first to the conclusion that it was somehow All My Fault that the bad things were happening (which was not fun) and a little later, to the conclusion that it was somehow All The Children’s Father’s Fault (which made me feel a little bit better but didn’t make the problems go away).

My current operating theory is, more or less, this: that Bad Things happen, simply because we are mortal and living in a fallen world. Some of them are obviously the natural consequences of our own poor choices; others are the natural consequences of other people’s poor choices; and still others, just are. And it’s how we respond to them, which determines the sort of person we become. Over the past three and a half decades, my mantra has slowly shifted from “Why me?” to “What now?” to “Please help me to figure out what You want me to learn from this.” With, thankfully, the occasional side order of “I’m really having a lot of fun right now. Thank You!”

Since I had the camera out, I thought I should show you that something other than napping and reading and countless games of Mah Johngg Toy Chest were happening chez Ravelled. I was also in the mood for a little doll-wrangling. I managed to extricate Faith from her sheath and put her into the denim jumper and long-sleeved T-shirt which Middlest made for her. And then, of course, the camera batteries went dead. Here is a bit of fun that I had, just before that happened. The characters on our family flag (begun when we lived in Fredericksburg, finished after we got to Arlington), playing dress-up:

That flag normally hangs on the wall behind the end of the couch. It is down because I spent a good chunk of last weekend, before I got sick, lying on my back with my feet up the wall, trying to coax my cankles into some semblance of anklitude. That would be “me”, modeling Faith’s new outfit, and “Fourthborn” (who made that little red bracelet she is sporting), modeling the coral T-shirt, with the aqua T-shirt playing dogpile on “LittleBit”.

Sock happens; here’s proof:

Those colors are uncharacteristically accurate, the photographic equivalent of the stopped clock which is right, twice a day.

I went to bed at a decent hour and tossed and turned. Then I awoke around 12:45 with an itchy foot. If I have enough covers over my feet to keep them comfortably warm, it is apparently an inducement to the athlete’s foot to be fruitful and multiply. So I got up and dosed my foot and chatted for a few minutes with NintendoMan while uploading pictures and fixing the first toddy of the day. My foot is quiescent, my coughing is more or less under control, and I am going back to bed.


Kristen said...

It just so happens that I was reading these scriptures yesterday:
Matthew 5:45 "[God] maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."
Job 2:10 "What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?"
Appropriate to your current theory, yes?
I have to say, you have a wonderful way with words. (I must use a Steve Martin quote here: "And some people not...have...way."
Paper burns at 451 degrees! I wish I'd said that!

Leslye said...

So glad you are feeling better! Since you, Bro Stilts, and NintendoMan were in the same ward, do I know N.Man? Just curious...

Jenni said...

Glad that you seem to be feeling better and got more sleep and a few other things done yesterday. I hope the return to the real workd today goes just as well.