On December 29 I talked to one of my former cub scouts at church. He was in town visiting his family. He works for Goldman Sachs and lives in New York. He is much the same as he was back then. Handsome, bright and shiny. Shiny is the word I use for those who have “that light” in their eyes. He told me how another young man who lives in New York and has family in our ward asked him if he hated the city yet. Aaron’s replied, “No, I love it!” I totally understand his feelings. I have long said that I am a city girl an although I do love Kingwood and it feels like home, I truly miss living in a big city. I spent 11 years living in London, Singapore and Tokyo. I miss the diversity and being taken by surprise at something I saw almost everyday.
A few months ago I started following a Facebook page called Humans of New York. A photographer takes pictures of people all over the city and posts them on his blog and his Facebook page. Then in December I discovered that the photographer had a book with photos and comments either by him or the subjects in his photos. I immediately bought one for my daughter-in-law and funny thing she bought one for me and herself.
After talking to Aaron that Sunday I decided to send the book to him. It’s wrapped and ready to go, I’m just waiting for his address.
An interesting side note (to me at least)-he knows one of my favorite seminary students, Elisabeth Evans, who also lives in New York. (She has “that light” in her eyes, too.)
Today Rick and I spent the entire afternoon shopping for the supplies the missionaries need. We have been doing this monthly shopping trip for quite awhile. We have it down to a bit of a science. We divide the list in half and I get cleaning supplies and equipment and Rick shops for office supplies, kitchen supplies and auto. It usually takes about 30 minutes for us to shop and at least that long to check out. Yesterday we started at Sam’s, but the mission membership card wasn’t working so we went to Walmart. Although it seems like mundane work, it is great service that allows the missionaries to do the work that they came here to do.
And just because I do this shopping every month I find it hard to count this. I have been thinking about my friend Tina and decided to write her an email hoping to bridge the 18+months since I have seen her. She was grateful to hear from me and sent an update about what she is doing and where her girls are. I need to set a goal to do better at staying in touch with the people I care about.
This project has been harder to do than I thought it would be. I am trying to do things that don’t always involve giving away money. I want to do things that involve my time and one on one contact with others. It has also been challenging because I have been doing many good things, but they aren’t things I wouldn’t do anyway.
Today I prayed that I would find something good to do. I didn’t see my friend Becky at church today. She had knee replacement surgery last month and is still recovering. After church I decided to make a pot of chicken pot pie soup and bread. Then I decided to make some pumpkin muffins. I packaged it all up and called Becky. I dropped off breakfast and lunch for her tomorrow and stayed for a visit. I am grateful for her and the time that she spent visiting me while I was going through chemotherapy.
-It is hard to write about acts of service like this when I should be doing it anyway.
Around December 21 I found out that a very good friend from my time in London was diagnosed with a brain tumor. My heart broke! She had a biopsy on December 24 and has been moved to a skilled nursing facility. The doctors said that due to the advanced state of the tumor she only has 1-3 weeks to live. I am so glad that her son and daughter are with her. I feel a bit helpless being across the country. Today I sent her a message expressing my love for her and my gratitude for her friendship.
My friend Becky had knee replacement surgery recently and I have had such a busy month that I haven’t taken time to call or visit. I have been prompted to check on her, but the demands of each day took over and I would forget. Today, I deliberately stopped what I was doing and called to chat with her for awhile. I don’t like counting things I should be doing or always do as part of The Birthday Project, however, today I made a deliberate choice to stop procrastinating and do something.
One of my friends has a sweet daughter serving a mission for our church in California. My friend sends me a weekly update from her daughter so I get to hear how she is growing and about all the good things she is doing. Today I sent her a little Christmas gift. It made me smile!
There were many acts of service today, but they are things I do all the time. This birthday project is meant to get me thinking about doing things I normally don’t do. As part of day 60 I plan to mail 60 thank you notes to people who have influenced my life. I plan to write a note each day so that I have 60 completed by day 60. I haven’t started this and am already behind so today I wrote three of these notes to catch up.
I wrote three more thank notes to people who touched my life today and mailed them…two young girls played O Holy Night and a friend taught a beautiful lesson about the Savior and encouraged us to think about the question asked in Matthew 16:15 “But whom say ye that I am? Then ask myself, “Am I seeking to have Christ revealed to me?”
McCall sure loves her friends. I’m so grateful for time with my Utah family.
Today I made Valentine’s Day cupcakes with friends. Here are their creations:
I am grateful for the pot of red tulips brightening my days. Thanks Karine!