Today was the last day the zoo was offering half price admission for military families. We talked about going all week. My dad had projects to work on at home, but my mom was excited to go and had good energy. So, I made lunch for my dad, and packed a lunch for my mom and myself. I also packed up the transport wheelchair and lots of water before we headed out. There were many people who took advantage of the offer. Most of them were moms with small children. My mom mapped out the places she wanted to visit to see the animals she wanted to see, knowing that we would not be able to get through the whole zoo. The weather was absolutely perfect. Our first stop was the giraffes where we saw the baby that was born a couple of months ago. My mom passed on feeding them, but we had fun watching all the kids scream and laugh as the giraffes stuck out their long sticky tongues to grab the pieces of lettuce. From there we went on, up and down some pretty steep hills. My mom walked some and rode some. At one point we stopped to rest and my mom remembered the deep fried oreos that we had last time we visited. I obliged and we were joined by a mom with her 3 kids. We compared our deep fried oreos to their funnel cake and talked about their pets. We completed our zoo journey with the gorillas. At the time we were leaving, there was a huge amount of moms and little ones on their way out as well. I commented how we are all on the same schedule – get places early, eat lunch, and get home early to take a nap. It was a great outing and I was so glad my mom had the energy and enjoyed the day.
I Found God today enjoying the day with my mom at the zoo.
Yesterday, my dad’s cousin celebrated his 95th birthday. My dad did some research and found that his cousin was the longest living person in the family for at least a couple hundred years – as far back as my dad has been able to investigate. We sent some cards and my dad included a note telling him of the historical birthday. The family members who were with him shared pictures and videos of the party. We saw him open the card that popped up a cake with candles that lit up while the song “Happy Birthday” played. He was pretty proud of having the oldest birthday in the family. My parents remembered some of the woodworking that he and his son did and got out a couple of the gifts they received. I took photos of those and passed them along. I think it is just great that we are able to connect so easily in fun and important events like this.
I Found God today being able to connect with far away family for a special celebration.
I took my dad to the hospital for a routine procedure today and had a long wait while he was being tended to. At first, the small waiting room was packed. There was one woman who seemed to be having a particularly difficult time. She was brought in a wheelchair by an attendant who made sure she was near the outlet so she could plug in her cell phone. After a couple of minutes, she started crying. She said she had lost her mother and hadn’t been able to grieve. The attendant who was still present giving her instructions for her procedure encouraged her and helped her calm down some before she left. After another few minutes, a woman walked in and sat in a chair. The woman in the wheelchair started crying again, this time harder. She told the other woman that her mother died and she just had a vision of her sitting in the same chair the woman chose. The woman consoled her best she could and before she left, she gave her a big hug. At one point the only people in the waiting room were the woman in the wheelchair and me. She told me also about loosing her mother and that she hadn’t seen her until she had a vision of her sitting in the chair. I expressed my sympathy and chatted with her for a while until new people came in. One woman, seeing how upset the other was, asked her how she could help her, what could she do for her. And so it went. During the time the woman in the wheelchair and I were waiting, several new and different people came in, consoled her and hugged her before they went on their way. It was something quite beautiful to witness.
I Found God today in many consolers.
Last night I started back to my Bible class – year 2. It was good to see the people I met last year and hear what everyone did over the summer. As the teacher summarized the previous year and talked about what to look forward to, I was pleasantly surprised to realize how much I learned and retained. Today I saw pictures of my granddaughter who started her first year of preschool yesterday. She was grinning from ear to ear as she sported her backpack and freshly braided hair. Although I don’t really feel like an “old grandmother”, I thought about how the process of learning continues over a lifetime – or at least it should. My granddaughter was super excited to have some personal autonomy, to meet new friends, and to gain knowledge that will help her live her life. I felt the same way. I’m able to share my own thoughts at my class, I was looking forward to meeting the people in my new small group, and what I am learning about Christ is not only knowledge for my mind, but it is feeding my soul to help me live the rest of my life here and to gain eternal life once this one is passed.
I Found God today learning about learning.
The other day, a friend said he was thinking of and praying for me. That same day, another friend mailed me a note. I received it today and lit up immediately. The envelope and card displayed a berry pie topped with crust cut-outs designed to look like the American flag. It looked just like the pie I made for the 4th of July. My friend said she saw the note and thought of me as I had shared a picture of my creation. That in itself was very thoughtful. We lived in the same neighborhood until I moved, so she filled me in on the latest happenings as well. She also encouraged me and told me she is praying for me. In church today, the priest talked about really loving one another. To me, the note was a perfect example. My friend not only thought of me, but took the time to write and mail an encouraging note.
I Found God today in a thoughtful friend.
I went for a good long walk today that took me through the nearby park. During the week, the place is pretty uninhabited except for an occasional adult with children on the playground. As I neared the park, I saw that the parking lot was completely full and vehicles were parked along the busy street as well. When I arrived I saw that the large flat grassy area had been partitioned off into 4 fields. Each field had two teams of children playing flag football. The kids were probably from about 6-8 years in age. I stood for a while and watched the coaches getting each child in place and giving them their specific instructions. The ball would snap and the play would last about 2 seconds. Then the whole process would repeat. I was impressed by the patience of the coaches as they shuffled the kids around, told them what to do, and encouraged them. The sidelines held the rows of parents looking on. Periodically I would hear someone call out a child’s name or a cheer for the team. I enjoyed seeing the business and happiness of the park.
I Found God today in a bustling joyful group of kids and adults.
A while ago, we noticed that my brother’s dog had a funny lump on her back that seemed to be getting bigger. My brother took her to the vet who said it looked suspicious and should come off. She had surgery last week which left about a 6″ wound on her back. We have been waiting in anticipation for the results of the biopsy. In the mean time, we have been praying for her and even dabbed her with holy water from Lourdes. Tonight we were praying the Lourdes prayer and as soon as we finished, my brother announced that he had a voicemail from his vet. They said the mass was a cancer, but one that was easily treated, doesn’t metastasize, and very rarely reoccurs. When they did the surgery, they made sure they took out tissue around the border of the mass, so there would be no need for any other treatment. That was great news. We are all looking forward to her getting the stitches out so she can get back to her rambunctious self.
I Found God today in good news about my brother’s dog.