What a Day!!

11 12 2009

Tomorrow we’re moving to Shreveport.  We’ve spent the last couple of weeks packing…and packing…and packing some more.  Most of our furniture has been disassembled into a pile of boards and screws, and we’re eating from paper plates and cups.  But no matter how much prep work gets done, it seems there are always bunches of last-minute details to think about.  So today was “errands day.”

In the midst of our errands, we decided to go visit Camille at 17 Steps.  But along the way, our car started making a horrible grinding noise that only got louder and louder the more we drove.  We were close enough to Don and Sally’s house that we decided to stop there and regroup; Sally came home to find us in the driveway with the hood of our car open.

She knew a good mechanic in town, so we decided to follow her to the shop.  We didn’t make it far, though, when our car died (in the middle of an intersection…of course).  A cyclist stopped and helped us push the car into a parking lot, where we stood out in the cold and  Jordan called the towing company.

Turns out the A/C compressor was broken and had shredded the belt.  Fortunately, the mechanic was able to do a “quick fix” so that we could get the car back today and drive to Shreveport tomorrow.  The catch? We have no air conditioner in our car….but I don’t think  we’ll be needing that anytime soon! (The other catch is, of course, that we have to fix the compressor when we get back).

All in all, I think we were pretty lucky.  If our car had to go crazy, it couldn’t have picked a better location — in the middle of a big city, right near Don and Sally’s house.  We’re so thankful that this didn’t happen in the middle of rural Alabama tomorrow!!  And an extra bonus is that we got the whole car examined, and other than the compressor, the mechanic said we’re good to go.

Here’s hoping for an uneventful move tomorrow…

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Happy New Year!

1 12 2009

It’s officially Advent–truly, the most wonderful time of the year!  And even though my Advent got off to a less-than-holy start (we skipped church and drove all day long back to Atlanta), I’m excited about what the season has to hold (you know, in addition to moving and finding jobs and starting over again).

Over at Emerging Women, Kim Wilkens quotes from her father’s Advent Devotional: “I once met a don (professor) at Oxford University who scheduled his life according to the church’s calendar: its seasons, its saints’ days, and its liturgical hours. He refused to use or even to acknowledge the more arithmetic 12-month, numbered-day, 24-hour-subdivided Julian calendar that most of us follow. Making an appointment with him was difficult, to say the least…perhaps we might pay a bit more attention to our distinctive, somewhat countercultural church calendar. There could be some pleasantly surprising gifts awaiting us…”

Growing up, we had an Advent calendar that we hung on our refrigerator every year. Each night in December, my sister and I would take turns uncovering the day’s image. And by Christmas Eve, all the images came together to make one big Christmas picture. Even though the calendar has fallen apart (I think we finally got rid of it last year or so), the idea of the Advent calendar is one of my favorite ways to think about this season: a countdown coming a little closer to the big picture every day.   And if we will let it, each day will reveal a little bit more of that picture to us.

So one of my New Year’s resolutions is to be more intentional about following the Christian calendar in my own devotions and become more in tune with liturgical traditions.  I’m not sure what that will look like yet, but I’ll be sure to keep you posted.

And by the way–Julie Clawson wrote a beautiful post on the meaning of Advent: “Waiting for something beautiful to be born – for joy to fully enter your life – is hard.  The child is already there, the joy is present, but you still long for its arrival.”