Even this late into the year there remain patches of snow on the cold ground around this small town; and yet again there’s snow in the forecast for the coming week. The calendar pages continue to flip by regardless of the cold weather though, and garage sale season is quickly approaching. This year I’ll keep my eye out for a kitchen table and matching chair set, a bed frame, and maybe a dresser. With those few purchases I should be all set for moving again in the next few months.
Four years ago, as I anticipated finishing school, I spent my days dreaming of the future and deciding what I’d never do or would be sure to do someday. Those thoughts have changed somewhat over the years . . . I’ve found it amusing how time, circumstances, and priorities so change firm convictions. Years ago I promised myself I’d never live in an apartment (why? I’m not sure), but now I’m making plans to move into my second apartment. The unexpectedness of life is exciting and I invite it, but at the same time the routine and ordinary occurrences are precious and comforting in their own way. I think L. M. Montgomery knew the beauty of the familiar because in Anne of Ingleside today I read “Her heart sang all the way because she was going home to a joyous house . . . a house where everyone who crossed its threshold knew it was a home . . . a house that was filled all the time with laughter and silver mugs and snapshots and babies . . . precious things with curls and chubby knees . . . and rooms that would welcome her . . . where the chairs waited patiently and the dresses in her closet were expecting her . . . where little anniversaries were always being celebrated and little secrets were always being whispered.” Doesn’t that sound nice, even though it is ordinary? I’m thankful for the known and for the unknown.
Speaking of garage sales, those are another of my favorite memories from childhood. Early on sunny Saturday mornings my mom would leave the house for a couple hours of garage sale hunting around town. If my sisters and I were out of bed in time, and ready enough for the day to look presentable, we were allowed to come along. A very special treat was to drive through McDonald’s to order pancakes with maple syrup and sausage. My sisters and I sat side-by-side in the backseat during the first garage sale stop, cut our syrup-soaked-pancake-pile with a tiny plastic fork, gobbled the breakfast in a few minutes, then cleaned up and climbed out of the vehicle. We then joined Mom to wander around the rest of the sales looking for our own little treasures as she shopped for hers.
Between the garages we stopped at I’d stare up at the sky out of the car windows and consider life. For some reason a few of those thoughts stand out to me clearer than many others. One day I puzzled over this idea I’d heard that there’s only one person in the world who each of us is meant to marry . . . a sole soul-mate idea. After letting that swirl around in my little girl brain I decided it was implausible. Why and how would God expect us to find that one single person, and then say we’d done wrong if we married anyone else? And what about those who married more than once? Did they ruin someone else’s chance? I thought about how quickly the whole “plan” would have been messed up as soon as one person chooses the wrong spouse. It was such a big, difficult subject to consider. No wonder I was a quiet child.
God’s funny with the timing in this world. Each year seems to fly by faster and faster. And what’s scary is that I think this when I’m only twenty years old . . . How fast will it speed by when I’m sixty or eighty years old?
Now no one will catch me eating at McDonald’s, and instead of asking to get a baby doll, I’ll be looking over pots and pans, dishes and chairs. Instead of considering the idea of marriage, I’m considering who I’ll marry.
Philippians 4: 4-7: Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hears and your minds in Christ Jesus.
P. S. My dad is snow blowing our yard. There’s a first time for everything right?
And on another note, I’m about to leave the house to bake something delicious with a good friend. I’m so excited!