Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Good weekend

 I am not sympathetic with folks who go on and on about how busy they are. 

That's mainly because I have found most of them are busy doing things they CHOOSE to do. In my estimation, if you are engaged in elective activities, you don't have grounds to complain. 

You might be tired, and I get it, and if you want to talk about that in simple, everyday conversation, I'm here for you. But complaining, when you have control over your schedule? Not so much. 

So today, since it has been a while since I have posted anything here and I still like to keep at least a small presence, I won't tell you how busy I am. I am tired, yes (although I got good rest last night and feel much better), but it's from doing things I have chosen to do and things I enjoy. I've been busy, but I am not complaining about it. 

Wife and I made a quick trip over the weekend and managed to fit much into a short period. 

We flew into Washington, D.C. early Friday night. We rented a car and drove to Alexandria, VA and attended a small family event hosted by Wife's nephew and his wife. They got married in March in a  small family ceremony in California and chose to celebrate with family and friends this past weekend in the area where they live. 

We had nothing planned during the day Saturday, so drove into D.C. and strolled around the National Mall. I am lucky enough to have visited Washington numerous times, but I never tire of seeing the sites there. We walked around the Washington Monument and took in the views looking one way toward the Capitol, and the other toward the Lincoln Memorial and beyond toward Arlington Cemetery. We also visited the World War II Memorial for the first time.

We had learned it was a free self-guided tour day at Washington National Cathedral, so we visited it in the early afternoon. I only remember going there once during my previous visits to Washington, so it was nice to walk through it again. Its Neo-Gothic architecture is reminiscent of much older structures in Europe. 

The wedding reception was that night at a restaurant back in Alexandria. We had brunch Sunday morning with Wife's sister and niece. 

Sunday afternoon we went to Nationals Park and saw a game between the Washington Nationals and Houston Astros, my favorite MLB team (I might have mentioned this in the past!). It was a great day for being an Astros fan, as they won 8-0 and had four home runs! 

It was an early morning Monday, waking at 4:45 a.m. to get to the airport for a 6:50 departure. With the time change and the flight being on time, we were back in Nashville at 7:45 and I was working at my desk by 9. 

The early morning departure was a killer, especially with my having to start work as soon as I got back. 

So yes, I was tired. I'm still a bit tired (but much better). And this is one of several activities during a particularly busy few weeks. 

But we had a great weekend, and you won't hear me complaining about being too busy. I can cut back if/when I want to. And how often do I get to do this on a Sunday afternoon? 




Monday, April 25, 2022

Plugging along

And just like that it's the last week in April. In a few days the wedding, the event of which I wrote in my last post, will be a month behind us. 

It was a wonderful event, with Younger Son beaming with joy. Our hearts were full, and we were thrilled to have friends and family celebrate with us. We are delighted to have a new daughter-in-law. 

Four of my five grandchildren were in the wedding (the two-month-old sat it out - ha). We had speculated for months as to how they would do, if there would be meltdowns, etc. Well, in addition to being adorable, they were perfect! They marched right down the aisle on cue and uttered not a peep. 

It was decided they would not stand with the wedding party through the ceremony, but two of them sat through it (again, perfectly still and quiet) while two elected to go with grandparents (not us!) on hand to assist, hanging out in a back room. It could not have gone more smoothly. 

Wife and I stayed in Birmingham (site of the wedding) another night, which proved to be a good thing. We didn't have to get up and pack Sunday morning after the event and had time to spend with folks that morning before they left. We took a long walk in the afternoon before having a leisurely dinner that evening.  

From there we spent a couple days with friends at their lake house and came back home mid-week. It was nice to have a little diversion before easing back into daily life. 

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Wife has been gone a few days, leaving me to my own devices. 

I always choose the times of her absences to get caught up with chores around the house. The list is a long one and I will not have accomplished everything by the time she returns (being gone one week), but I will have made a dent in said list. 

It was a beautiful weekend, so neighbors were in their yards. I had occasion to visit with those on either side of me, learning the couple on the north side has a contract to sell their house. They never even put it on the market.

I almost fainted when Mr. Neighbor told me what they are getting for it, and when I talked to Wife later, I told her maybe it's time to sell. This seller's market won't last forever and look at what a chunk of change we could get, I told her.

Yes, of course, she said, before asking where I would suggest we would go if we were we to sell. If we're staying around here, we are going to buy into the same market into which we would supposedly sell at a premium. 

So, there's that. And I suppose we're staying put. And I guess, with my investments not doing so great these days, the value of the house is helping the personal balance sheet. 

After a trip to the hardware store Saturday morning, visiting with the neighbors and chipping away at the to-do list, I made a late afternoon visit to my favorite craft brewery, with Kindle in hand. I am in the middle of "The Godfather" and decided a crisp, draft beer would go splendidly with an hour or so of reading. And I was right. 

I have also watched some baseball and Netflix while Wife has been gone. I have an independent streak, and I do fine while she is gone, but I do look forward to her return in a couple of days. 

Of course, I still have my day job to fill my weekdays. I am ever more thankful for that, keeping me in a routine of sorts. Although I am sure, if I were retired, I would enjoy the additional time I would have for reading and other hobbies, and although I suppose I would be more productive on the home front (with a shorter to-list, perhaps!), I still very much like the rhythm of my job. 

So I'll keep at it for now. And I'll work on that to-do list as I can. 





Monday, March 28, 2022

A wedding

Weddings take different forms. 

Ours, 38 years ago this August, took place in Wife's parents church, with a reception in the church's fellowship hall where wedding cake, punch and coffee were served. We had friends and family there and it was great fun, as were the months leading up to it.

A couple of years ago, a lady who works for me was getting married and she asked me to be their only witness. We went to the county courthouse, and the ceremony was held in a little gazebo on the lawn.  They had written their own vows and it was lovely. It was the happy couple, the officiating pastor and me. She referred to me as her maid of honor! 

And there are millions of other kinds of weddings. In some countries/cultures, the wedding ceremony and celebration might last for days. Some couples elope. Some have a few friends and family. It's all about what you want and what you're comfortable with. 

The end result is the same: two people stand before someone and, if they are people of faith, God, and profess their commitment to each other. At the end of that, they are married. 

Some people don't much like weddings. I rather enjoy them. I am plus or minus on a big party that might coincide with it, but the part I especially like is witnessing two people commit their lives to each other. Because I am a person of faith, I love the spiritual element and how two people become as one -- the mystical union, if you will. 

If there is music involved, I love that too. I especially like a pipe organ or piano, but if it's a guitar or some other instrument, or even recorded music, that's fine too. It's fine, of course, if there is no music at all, but because I love music, I prefer it. 

In just a few days, Younger Son and his fiancĂ© will stand before all of us and commit to each other. It will be a rather large affair, because they want to celebrate with family and friends. Wife and I will host the rehearsal dinner the night before. 

It will be a fun and joyous time, and I am looking forward to it. 

This is the last of our three children to marry, and we are very happy for him. Our soon to be daughter-in-law has become part of the family, and we love her. Wife and I are lucky in that we are three-for-three in the in-law department. 

Man, does life go fast or what?! Wasn't this little guy just born a few months, or at most a few years, ago? That little caboose on the end of our family's train that is still, to this day, the comic relief in our family? He's old enough to be married????

Plenty old, in fact. He'll turn 30 in October of this year. 

Congratulations to him.