A Weekend of Blessings

I do not take the time to count my blessings as often as I should so, although I should be hanging up the wash and mowing the lawn, I am going to take a few minutes and do just that.

On Thursday morning, the daughter called me after she and her cousin had breakfast with my dad, who will be 83 next Saturday. The girls met him at Bob Evans, which is his home away from home since my mom died. At six in the morning. How many twenty-somethings would do that? Dad has requested that as many family as possible be present for the steak dinner at his American Legion post this Saturday, his birthday. The girls both requested off work. I live three hours away from my dad, and I cannot tell you how thankful I am that they are there for him.

On Friday, we headed to Ohio to help the daughter take care of her nephews. We forgot the cell phone. (we’re down to one since retirement), and returned home to get it.

About 50 miles into our trip, we heard a rumble which we both thought was a tire going. Then we heard a POP, and things smoothed out. We stopped anyway. The tires looked OK.

When we resumed out trip, we thought the van sounded extra noisy. Ten or so miles down the road, the rumble started again. A lot louder. A LOT shakier. Complete with smoke. The right front tire was shredded. I have never seen a tire smoke, and I have never seen one (of ours, anyway) in that many pieces.

We had never changed a tire on the van before, so we dug out the owner’s manual and went to work. Soon the spare was mounted, but when the hubby let the van back down, we found that the spare was … flat.

We don’t have AAA, but hmm…God had sent us back for the cell phone. The hubby called for help. All we needed was for the spare to be pumped up, right?

Except that, when the tow truck arrived, the spare was flat.

After a tow truck ride that only cost us $55, which is what it would have cost to inflate the spare, we were repaired and on our way. We were worried about the time, though. The daughter had to go to her other job. When we called to see where to meet her, we found out that she wasn’t working after all, even though she had thought she was.

Now Who oversaw that?

All of us went to Oak Openings on Saturday, to meet with one of my our oldest friends (more about that later), who had never met the grandsons. Jackie is into all things nature, and so the grandsons learned from her. They heard a bullfrog, which I heard but would never have been able to identify. They watched butterflies sun themselves. She kissed RJ’s freckles, which made him giggle. She cornered Tony for a kiss (he’s sparing with them). He laughed and said he wiped the kiss off, to which she replied with a grin that her kisses stick anyway. It was good to be with her and to remember how much her love was a part of my children’s lives.

Later, we swam at the pool in the daughter’s apartment complex. The grandsons are sort of afraid of water, but they relaxed a bit, which was good to see. The daughter and her cousin are good at handling them.

Then the daughter went to work, but the niece and her boyfriend joined us and my dad for a trip to the Strawberry Festival. My dad took us there when we were little, always looking forward to the first strawberry shortcake of the season. We took our son before he was a year old. We have a picture of him sitting on a giant strawberry. The niece took RJ on the Ferris wheel and one of those really fast rides that Grandma doesn’t like, and my dad went with me to watch Tony, who was big enough to go by himself, thank you, ride motorcycles, bumper cars, and a mini-roller coaster. It was good.

I work with kids all the time who cannot count on their families, who don’t know what a good time with family would entail. But I do.

And I feel blessed.

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