Tag Archives: Seasons

The Best Laid Plans . . . .

autumn leavesIs summer over?  How quickly it went from very hot to not so hot and cool evenings.  I know—you like autumn.  You like the leaves turning colors, the cool breezes, getting out your sweaters and boots, and having pumpkin spice latte.  Good for you!  I am not a fan of autumn.  For me it’s a huge reminder that winter is on its way, and the days will become shorter and shorter, and it will be dark before dinner time.  That is not as bad for me as it used to freezingbe when I was working.  I just hated going home at 4:30 or 5:00 and it’s dark outside.  In the midwest, not only does that happen, but the leaves start falling off the trees, and the temperature starts dropping.  To me Autumn says, “Hey look at me.  I am bringing you to the brink of dark and cold.”

Fortunately, we now go do Arizona in the winter.  Our plan has always been that we would buy the house in Arizona, and enjoy January to May in the sunshine.  We would put our Missouri house on the market, sell it, and rent something near Columbia, Missouri, to be near my Dennis’ mom until she passes.  Then we will make Arizona our permanent home.

Plans are easy to make.  Executing them is another thing since much of it is out of our hands.  Our home didn’t sell, so we were not renting.  Then Dennis’ mom passed away a couple weeks ago.  That threw a wrench in what I thought was well thought out plans.  It does relieve us of the rental thing, but we still have our home in Missouri.  We were going to go back to Arizona the first of December and stay through May since there are no graduations we need to be in Missouri for in 2020.  

calendarShortly after the funeral, Dennis said to me, “Let’s go to Arizona in October.”  At first it just threw me off of my game.  Why that was weeks before what we planned.  But then, what we planned isn’t what has happened.  Sure, we could go to Arizona in October.  Then we looked at our calendars.  We had several follow-up type doctor’s appointments in November and December.  We got on the phone and rearranged all the appointments.  One of the doctors didn’t have an opening until October 17.  Okay, we will go after that date.  We have rearranged our doctor appointments, and made new ones for ones we were going to have to make.  I even gave in to a 7:30 a.m. appointment in order to make a change.  If you know me well, you know I am forever grateful for being retired, and I don’t have to get out of bed until 8:00 a.m.  For this appointment, I have to leave the house at 6:45 a.m.  It is for a good cause though—our getting ready to be back in Arizona.  Everything is now set for leaving after October 17.

IMG_8846Our house, you ask?  It’s still on the market.  There are some really good prospects that may bring a contract very soon.  In the meantime, we will take 99.9% of our belongings with us to Arizona in October.  We are not taking furniture.  The house there is already furnished.  We will keep furniture, bedding, kitchen stuff at a minimum, and whatever small amount of items we need to live here in the summer.  So instead of having a winter home, we will live in Arizona, and our Missouri home will be our summer home.  If we get a contract on it before we plan to return, we already know how we will come back to town, and move everything out for the closing of the house.  One of the things Dennis and I are good at is logistics.  We have a Plan A, and then a Plan B.  If we need to, we can come up with a Plan C.  We will then become permanent residents of sunny Arizona!

Here I am talking about going back mid October, and I forgot to mention, other than doctor’s appointments, I am having surgery on September 4.  When this was planned, although I didn’t know our original plan was going to change so drastically, I asked the doctor about how long recovery would be.  He told me if I was not retired and was working a desk job, I would be able to go back to work in two weeks.  I couldn’t lift or do packing boxesheavy stuff, but I would be mobile and well enough by then.  So, taking that in mind, it will be about six weeks until we leave for Arizona.  That works.  

We started packing boxes the other day.  With Dennis having a new shoulder, he cannot do heavy lifting, and after September 4, I won’t be able to do that either.  Our plan is to have the majority of the boxes packed by September 4.  Then we will ask for some help packing the last minute boxes and loading them into our car and trailer we plan to rent to move our belongings.

JuryDutyIt’s a plan.  It’s the Plan A for the October move down.  There may have to be a Plan A (Revision A).  I am actually on call for jury duty this week.  That’s right, Callaway County Missouri, wants me to do my civic duty this week.  They wanted me to do it last spring, but I replied to their request that I was living in Arizona until May, so they happily moved my dates for sometime in August, September, or October.  I was really hoping the house would be sold, and I could tell them I no longer live in Callaway County.  We don’t plan to change residencies until we have officially sold our home.

Callaway County has a call-in number.  We have to call in everyday to see if there is jury No trialduty the next day.  I called the number last night.  I am free as a bird today.  Great!  Dennis has a couple doctor’s appointments today, and he is not allowed to drive yet.  Hopefully, his orthopedic doctor will give him the okay this afternoon.  Yes, I know.  Had I been called into jury duty, with our 2nd car garaged in Arizona, he would have to drive me to the courthouse so he could drive himself to his doctor to get permission to drive!  

San Tan PoolI miss the hot outdoors.  It’s not September yet.  I want another week to use the pool, but 60 degree temps at night really cool the water down too much for me.  I may be finished with this pool for this season.  There will be no swimming after September 4.  It makes me kind of sad.  We do have a community pool in Arizona.  Surely it is open in the autumn with their lovely weather.  I might get a bit of pool time in after all.  

I better get to work.  So far Plan A with no revisions is still on the table.  I know it will all work out.  I may have to make a Plan B, C, or D.  It’s okay, if I do.  I know that God’s timing is much better than mine.  


Tis the Season . . . .

00snowl was born in December. I came home from the hospital on Christmas Eve. I was the best gift to the family that year! Strangely enough, I never liked winter. It was cold and bleak. The sun goes down early in the day when you live in a place that has daylight savings time. I really disliked winter when I was working, and had to go home in the dark every day. I love sunshine. I tell everyone that I am solar. I have more energy on a sunny day.

00autumnAs autumn is upon us and I see the leaves changing on the trees, the flowers slowing down and about ready to wilt from the first frost, I am thinking about winter. Living in the city, winter meant icy streets. After a nice clean snow, it all becomes dingy and dirty snow as our cars drive through the slush and kick it up on the roadside. It used to make me sad to see autumn. It was a precursor to the end of warm and sunny. It was like the signal of things dying. Although I am not a fan of these colder seasons, I know it is necessary for new life to regenerate. The old must die, and new life returns. It is a life cycle that will always be there.

00birdsFour years ago I moved to the country after getting married to my sweet husband. He retired to the country after working his whole career in busy cities running a railroad. Our home sits on a little lake or a large pond, however one wants to describe it. It is serene. I have found the winters serene. We have three fireplaces in our home, but I love the one in the living room the best—it is a wood burning fireplace. The living room has 16 windows and a double sliding glass door, so the sunlight shines in, and nature is right outside the window. In the winter, when it is really cold, we will build a fire and sit in the living room and watch the beauty out of doors. Dennis put a bird feeder on this property right past the deck. I can sit in the living room on a cold, snowy day and watch the abundance of birds come to feast on the suet and seeds. Of course, a few rude squirrels will try to chase the birds off so they can feast 00poolalso. We have enough to share.

Summer is my favorite season, and that has not changed from when I lived in the city and moved to the country. I love the fact there is a pool out back and the lake behind it. I can swim, lay out, or paddle in the boat across the lovely little lake. In the summer, the abundance of trees make it is hard to see the neighbors’ homes that are around this small body of water. In the winter, I can see two of the homes.

As spring arrives, there are signs of trees budding, the spring flowers such as tulips, daffodils, and irises are popping out of the ground. Those flowers don’t last long like summer flowers, but they are some of my favorites. The April showers come, and bring moisture to the ground to allow the flowers to sprout to their beauty once again. It is a sign of new life. It is energizing. It fills my soul with hope for a new day.

00sprinklerWhen summer arrives, it is life at its fullest. Trees are rustling in the warm breezes, flowers are blooming, geese are swimming across the pond with their new babies. People are outside mowing their lawns, weeding their gardens, swimming, riding bikes, playing ball, and enjoying the warm of the season. Everyone is active. The bees are landing on the flowers sipping the nectar to produce the rich honey. You can hear children in the distance playing outside, laughing and just being kids.

00 springIt is the cycle of life. We are born like a new spring. Sprouting into this world, receiving love and nourishment to become young, active people with hopes and dreams. We run around in life as if the summer of our lives would last forever. We feel the sun shining on us all the way to our souls and we feel refreshed. As the years go by, our autumn comes upon us. It is still beautiful, but different. Like the leaves changing, our hair color may turn to white, a few wrinkles come along, and we may have a little more trouble moving along. It is just the slowing down of nature. But . . . it is beautiful in its own way. We delight in the beautiful changing of the leaves. Why don’t we delight in the beautiful changing of ourselves? It is a wonderful time of life. Slowing down, retiring from our busy work schedules to enjoy life as we wish it to be. As the winter of our life approaches, we will lose many of our friends before it’s our time. We will see the pain of our icy roads and lost leaves in our bodies not working as well as they did in the past. There is still a quiet beauty in these days. Those peaceful, snowy days are like the peaceful later days as we prepare to meet the one who created these life cycles.

IMG_0724I look at my life in the different seasons, and I see how it all fits together. My first years as a child and becoming an adult are like the spring of my life. I was young and full of energy. I was nourished with love, food, education, faith, and friends that helped me grow and become strong. Everything I encountered was new and fresh and I was excited to move on to the next steps in my life. As I moved into the summer of my life, I became a mom. Four little boys ran around the house and I relished in the aliveness that was around me. I also had a heavy drought in the summer of my life. It was my hardest years, and I thought I wasn’t going IMG_3692 - Version 2to survive, but everything came back to being, and life continued to go and grow. I moved into my loved career and continued thriving as I have moved into the autumn of my life. There is a slowing down. I am now retired. My hair has changed colors (but not fallen out, as have happened to some of the men!). I enjoy the coolness of season. I can reflect back on the earlier years of my life (childhood, young adulthood, parenthood, and my career) with 00 birdfondness. These years have taught me many lessons and have made me the person I am today. I don’t know how long my autumn season will last. For some of my friends, the autumn and winter has taken them, for some autumn has been hard on them. But we will all be there. As I relish this time in my life, I know there will be a day, the winter of my life, when things will seem harsh and cold. I will not move around as easily as I do today. I will know that this is part of life as surely as the spring of my life was. As the winter of my life approaches, I will be looking forward to the spring of a new life for eternity, one that will be all the seasons and the best of all the seasons. I will have no regrets.

These seasons of life are all beautiful in their own way. Each cycle of life we encounter has its blessings and its problems, but it is what makes that season in life so special. I realize that I need to slow down and appreciate season I am in, and every season in my life as it comes and goes. Each season is so different. Just slow down and see the beauty in our lives as we go. Appreciate every encounter one has with others, what special times we have to connect and communicate. Appreciate the nature around us — the trees, every blade of grass, the animals, birds, flowers, even those pesky little bugs that run around on six legs. Embrace the creation we have been given. Understand that none of it is forever–it is ever changing in order to continually bring new life.

How are you enjoying and embracing each season of your life? What do you want to hold onto? What do you want to change? What beauty do you see as you think of the seasons in your life?00 Psalm 118