Following God’s Leading?

R and I talked about our move last January and decided we would not attempt it. Then in March, having talked to graduate students at uni, I called and said, “Please!” He told me to go ahead and apply. I didn’t even get an interview.

My mother died last summer, during the time I would have been moving, so I am grateful we did not move.

I went ahead and reapplied for the new year, even as I was applying and interviewing for a job in our city. I got the job in our city, but I did not remove myself from the uni position.

Six months or more later I got a call about the uni position, for an interview. I was very truthful in my answers, no hedging, though obviously my teaching demo was probably one of my better days, since I spent three days working on it. (I don’t often have that opportunity.)

R came with me when I came up for the interview. He rode with the paramedic people and talked to the computer people on campus. The computer folks told him that he might get a call from their boss. They didn’t have his number. Two days after we got home, he got a phone call on his cell from their boss. (Someone took the time to look for him.) He was very excited about the possibilities with both jobs.

We both saw what we had loved about the uni and the town and were very excited about the possibilities of coming here.

Not too much later I was offered a job. I asked for more money. I got more money. I asked for reduced tenure time. I got reduced time.

We had money to buy a new house with my inheritance from my mother and my father had actually given us sufficient money that we could pay off bills, pay for the move, get needed work done on the house, etc.

It seemed that the road was golden.

Then as we got ready to come, it got more complicated. Not because things had problems, but because it seemed harder.

R doesn’t want to leave his friends from school and photography. His job is less boring. He’s making more money than he will/can here.

I loved my job, even though I didn’t have the best students in the world. They were motivated and they worked (or when they worked) they were amazing. And, because they needed the knowledge I was teaching, I felt like I was on a mission. Over the long term, I thought my job might get boring. I hadn’t yet made any friends at work, even after a year. I had only one semi-friend in the neighborhood. So I was ready to leave.

In the new town, I have two friends. One is a relatively new friend but amazingly close anyway. One I have known for longer than I’ve been married. I’ve enjoyed getting to know others. One old acquaintance was going to be here when I started the moving process, but is now going to be going back to her old home.

While I am here, it seems the right thing to be doing. When I leave, it seems hard.

R is having a hard time, because his life, both in the old place and the new one is so up in the air. His school, which has been at night, is going to be during the day. The part-time work he was planning to get to prepare for paramedic work here did not pan out. He’s going to have to ask his boss if he can shift to three days a week.

The house has a lot of issues that I wasn’t expecting. Some of them have been fixed. Some of them have not. The contractors in the town don’t always call back. Even when they make an appointment, they don’t show up. I told someone I needed immediate help, he told me he’d get back with a price in two weeks. This is a bit of a problem on several levels.

So these last two difficulties are making us wonder what we were thinking deciding to come here.

I prayed pretty extensively about this job and I asked that God NOT have them offer me the position if I should not take it. So basically I asked over and over for not having an interview, etc. I did, so I took that as a sign that I should take it.

I hope that this is indeed what God wanted for us. I also hope that this is not a winnowing time or a refiner’s fire, but more of a bumper crop of growth. (Though I know the two are not necessarily disconnected.)

I have already had four meal dates, cooked food for a friend, taken leftovers to a friend, spent three hours playing with grand-girls, and hanging out with several different friends in general. I hope that these connections will grow and give me strong roots here. I also hope that R’s roots, though starting to get planted later, will also be nourished and grow.

I am a bit concerned about his photography. He had cleared out the site to PG stuff, but he’s started putting his fine art stuff back up. I think he doesn’t care anymore. The problem with that is 1. it may effect my job (and where we will find the money or jobs to move to if it does, I have no idea) and 2. it may effect his ability to get a job (assuming the computer thing ever actually happens).

Politics was apparently not in play during the last administration (or very little), but with the new administration it is the same kind of politics that were going on when I left last time. I’m not too thrilled about that.

God, please give R peace about this move. Please help me to know what to do and when to do it and how to do it well. And then, Lord, help me follow through with it.

Note to self: I’ve been here a week and have only written three pages on academic work. I need to read the book for the retreat on the plane tomorrow. I also need to pack my computers. Hmmm. Need my backpack.

Our Washer

An LG 3.7 cu ft washer
Amperage (amps) : 10 A
Assembled Depth (in.) : 29.75 in
Assembled Height (in.) : 38.75 in
Assembled Width (in.) : 27 in
Bleach Dispenser : Yes
Built-in Water Heater : Yes
Color/Finish : Wild Cherry Red
Depth With Door Open 90 Degrees (In) : 51
End-Of-Cycle Signal : Yes
Energy Star Compliant : Yes
Estimated Yearly Operating Cost ($) : 11
High Efficiency : Yes
Item Weight : 192 lb
Manufacturer Warranty : 1 Year Parts and Labor
–10 Years on Direct Drive Motor,
–Lifetime on Stainless Steel Drum
Out-of-Balance Detection : Yes
Prewash Detergent Dispenser : Yes
Product Depth (in.) : 29.75
Product Height (in.) : 38.68
Product Weight (lb.) : 192
Product Width (in.) : 27
Returnable : Non-Returnable
Reversible Door : No
Safety Lock : Yes
Soak Cycle : No–This is the only thing I wish it had that it doesn’t. Can’t exactly leave open the door of a front load washer.
Sound Reduction System : Yes
Stackable : Yes
Stacking Kit Available : Yes
Steam Function : Yes
Voltage (volts) : 120 V
Washer Capacity (cu. ft.) : 3.7
Washer Tub/Drum Material : Stainless Steel
Washer Type : Front Load

Oh, by the way, in case you were wondering, yes, the washer fits. And there will still be space for some kind of table (though right now I am leaning towards a very unique one), plus we can put wall cabinets up above it for laundry soap, etc.

What’s Happening with Moving?

This is not all that I did. I went endlessly shopping for things that should have been simple. Scrubbed floors with a sponge on my hands and knees. Cleaned both bathrooms. Hung out with friends. Read a book. Did some work on my chapter. But this is the basic idea:

I drove in last Tuesday (a week ago) with only tubs, since it was supposed to rain the whole way. I got ten drops. Too bad. We could have used the rain.

Tuesday night after unloading the truck, which did not take long, I went washer and dryer shopping.

Wednesday morning Bob D and I walked through the house. Then I went to the closing. That was very easy. Give them money, sign my name, get the keys.

Wednesday afternoon lunch with a friend. Then had two contractors scheduled.

I got a great bid on the porch that would make the house beautiful, but I can’t afford it. Maybe when Dad sells the house, if he’s still handing out money…

The fence guy did NOT show up on Wednesday but did show up on Thursday. The price isn’t great, but it is okay.

Wednesday evening I went to buy the set of washer/dryer I thought was best. Those turned out to be more than I expected, since I did finally find reviews. However, one place had the really good ones on supersale, if you were willing to go with red. So the new washer/dryer are red. I like red.

I found a kitchen set that I like, that I think R would like, and that is less than $600. Solid mango wood. Well built. But if Dad sells the house, then I don’t need it. So I haven’t bought it. Even though it is on sale. Massive sale. I need something if Dad doesn’t sell the house. But I don’t know/won’t know.

Of course, the sale ends July 22, so it is possible that we could arrive and go straight over there to purchase the table and chairs. (If I don’t have Dad’s by then, I have no idea when I might get them.)

Thursday morning I bought a bath mat and looked for towels. I also bought some groceries, so I could eat at home.

Then Thursday lunch I went out with Nancy. That was nice. She had a good suggestion for where to place the china cabinet. Thanks!

Had no hot water in the shower, so I got online and checked my email. The email from the gas company said I had to schedule a turn on. I thought I had already done that. So I went through the whole online thing. Then I got an email saying they didn’t service my area. (I saw them in the alley!) So I called. Turns out I had a service contract. The gas was on. But still no hot water. So they sent someone out. He checked on the meter. It was running slow, so he replaced it. That means I’ll be paying more for gas than the folks who used to live here.

He also put up a curtain that I had pulled down and had no means of getting high enough to put up.

I found a set of colors put together that have our kitchen yellow, living room gold, and washer/dryer red with a white called popped corn (Behr). So I am doing the big ugly brown wall in Popped Corn white. Yeah. Bought that paint.

Friday I woke up almost in tears. I did not have a clue why I was so depressed. I called the doctor and the pharmacist to find out if skipping my evening medicine (which I had forgotten to take) was the cause. Eventually found out that it was not.

Hubby did not know I was crying that morning, but sent flowers. Beautiful yellow roses. Whoo hoo, R! Great timing on that.

It may have something to do with being in an empty house with a card table and two camp chairs, one of which’s bottom is breaking out. Oh, and the fact that my gorgeous antique blue Depression glass looks bland and boring with the colors in the house here.

Called friend and asked if her SIL could do some work for me.

He said yes. So Saturday we spent four hours trying to get blinds. (That didn’t work because the saw was off so they didn’t fit.) He left and I took the blinds back. 5.5 hours later they were finished and all but one fits. (One they thought should have been 33, even though the box says 34, and so now it’s one inch too small.)

That evening, during the 5.5 hours of re-cutting the blinds (four new cuts each, plus taking them out of the box and then having to repackage them), I went to see a friend who is in the States for furlough. I was there about an hour and a half. It was good to see her. Left a tithe check for her literature fund.

After I got the blinds I went to Bob and MD’s house to get rocks. They have a yard full of rocks and want to plant grass. So I filled every tub I had to what I could lift and took them home.

Sunday morning went to church with the Ds. That was nice. Not sure it’s what R is looking for, but I could see going there myself.

Lunch with the whole D family, minus J’s wife and baby, who were at her folks’.

Afterwards Jill and Mark and their two angel girls came over. Mark did the blinds and hung the ceiling fan. Jill and I talked. The girls and I danced, ran, played, watched Veggie Tales on my computer, and generally enjoyed each other immensely.

I paid him $20/hr, which is less than he was worth but more than he thought he should get.

He said he would paint the accent wall, but I don’t know when he is thinking about doing that.

Mark and Jill agreed to come by the house to water the lawn on our water rationing days so that I won’t lose the lawn. I will definitely have to do something nice for them. (Plus money, probably.)

Went back to the Ds house and got a load of rocks. Took it home and unloaded it. Then they asked me when I was coming to get rocks. I told them I’d been and gone, but I did go back and get another load.

This morning early I also went and got a load. Then I went back and got another load. Instead of unloading it, though, I hung out at the Ds house and did my laundry. Yeah! (I didn’t bring a lot of clothes because I thought I would have a washer/dryer within a few days. Nope. Ordered.)

I called the insurance company and had my insurance increased to cover several other pieces of jewelry:
my graduation set
Grama Rill’s set
Thomas Singer necklace
other fetish necklace

Turns out the insurance company only pays a maximum of $3000 for jewelry that is stolen. It’s up to $1500 each piece, which is what I was told, but then it’s a total of $3000. I have more than that in vintage, antique, and Native American pieces. So I upped the insurance.

I also got a quote on the cars. Cheap. But I don’t know how much it would be worth it.

Then I called Geico and changed everyone’s car but R’s to New Town. R’s going to be in Big City for another few months. Dropped the price somewhat, but not a lot. (Or at least it didn’t seem like a lot to me. It may to R.)

Went to the water place and told them I was me, gave ID, and got approved to keep my water on. Called the Water Service people and found out that my pressure was “fine” but that the meter was slow… That means my water will cost more.

Mailed off the signature pages the insurance company had decided I absolutely had to have sent by today.

Got a light switch to replace the one in the truck that has been falling off for a year. (I tried supergluing it. That did not work. So did not work. Thankfully Bob D was able to get it back off.) He said try an auto store, but they didn’t have any. Or go to Ford. They had one. $17 to stop the annoyance of the light switch falling off in the dark.

Went to check out another furniture/junk/antique place (I think I have been to eight in town now, including two Goodwills and the Salvation Army). Nice stuff. Some chairs I liked, but didn’t like the table… Thought about buying two chairs which had no table, but didn’t.

Went to the cabinetry place Mark recommended. They designed a cheaper pantry than the expensive guy but will do a good job. So I’ll be getting the pantry. Tomorrow morning (after a rock run), I will go sign the contract and put 50% down.

Tonight I am going to Lowes to take back the blind and hope they will refund my money. (They don’t have any more blinds or I’d want a replacement.)

Moving Update

I have taken a total of 20 boxes of books to the library. I plan to downsize 30, so I need to come up with ten more to get rid of. (Btw, I learned that 25 book boxes weigh 700 pounds. Wow. If I really have 100 I may be seriously in trouble. I haven’t actually started packing my books yet. When I get home from Arkansas in July I will though. Then we’ll see.)

I have taken four loads of donation stuff to the donation places–3 to the battered women’s support and 1 to Goodwill. I have another small load in my car, which will probably go to Goodwill because it is on the way out and I’m having lunch with Dad.

Yesterday I went through all the pantries and spice cabinet and threw away all the expired stuff. Obviously we haven’t been cooking in a while. I threw away two actual garbage cans full of old food. Not the biggest ones, but two thirty-gallon cans.

Today the folks from the intercity church came and picked up furniture.
foozball table
big comfy chair (though in the garage so dirty)
couch (not so comfy, nice cover but easily messed up)
really fancy and nice painting that I didn’t like at all
antique hutch my mom bought from Deb Stanger when she had to get rid of all her stuff
small table from laundry room
tea cart from media room
3 televisions (one huge, two normal)
DVD player
office chair

After we sell the house next March (yes, God, are you listening?), we will have them come out again and pick up some more stuff. But we are leaving a lot for the staging.

Today I also cleaned out M’s closet. Packed most of the toys up to take with me for friends’ kids to play with (or grandkids maybe?) but put some in the donation pile.

Realized that M has three nice backpacks. Apparently all anyone remembers is his green one which broke. So he has three. One so new it still has tags on it.

I finished cleaning out most of the game closet. I have one game and six candles. I should probably just give the candles away, but I don’t want to. I used to like candles. Maybe I will again soon. Or maybe not.

Big, gotta call moving stuff I have finished:
I sent the Power of Attorney to the title company.
I got insurance from Safeco (Liberty Mutual).
I got electricity from Reliant.
I got gas from… Hmm. Atmos Energy.
I have not called the internet people, although I now know who they are. Thank you Bryan in Lubbock!
I tried to fax the stuff to the water people. No such luck. For some reason it wouldn’t work.

Apparently people in New Town don’t want to call back long distance folks.
So far I’ve not had return calls from a framer, a roofer, and a fence guy. I’m particularly disappointed about the fence guy because he’s from my church…

I made an appt with the guy to get the locks changed and have him look at other stuff. I guess if I have the locks he can do them when he comes by the house on Wed. afternoon. He won’t do the concrete stain. Too bad. I don’t want to try my hand at that.

I’m going to call the fence guy (one more time) and make an appt for later Wed. If he doesn’t show, I’ll find someone else.

One thing I need to do is make appts to see friends while I am in town for ten days. I need something to do so I won’t go stir crazy, especially as I’ll have no furniture at all.

Can’t decide how much clothes to take on this trip. I’ll be gone ten days. I don’t have ten days worth of bras, so either I buy more or I wash right away.

That means I need to get the washer and the dryer either the day I arrive (21) or soon thereafter. I wonder how long delivery takes. I guess I could hand wash the underthings if I can’t get the washer and dryer relatively quickly.

What I am taking:
as many boxes from my office and the house as will fit in the pickup I am still trying to figure out if I should roll up the cover and just tarp cover the boxes. Think I won’t, but that means I can only have a single layer of boxes. That’s not a lot of boxes, I don’t think.
clothes for five to ten days
Crystal Light and a pitcher, so I can have something to drink at the new house.
my meds
maybe my not fancy jewelry this trip
my computer (if I haven’t already finished the chapter, I will–might also want to start on the revision for Routledge)
the first book I need to review

I’m making a list of what I need to buy from Walmart after I get to town.
blow up bed
two hoses with sprinklers
peanut butter

Moving Calendar

June 21: head to town for closing
-pack stuff for a 10 day stay at the house
-take a truck load of stuff (office stuff or other? I won’t have an office, so maybe not office… Take what?)

June 22: closing
-electricity and gas accounts opened
-water needs to be signed, notarized, and faxed back

June 23-26: get blinds up, change locks, get fence in (?)
June 27-29: foundation done
June 30: fly home, get E

July 1-4: go to ILs

July 20: pick up moving truck, perhaps move pool table, stuff from Dad’s house
July 21: 9 am movers coming to pack house here
July 22-24: go to A-, get unloaded and unpacked
July 26: fly home (?)
July 31: drive back to A- with stuff and dog

Need to do:
This week:
sign, notarize, and fax water
find out what to do about check for the closing
decide what to take with you in pick-up
get boxes

Next week:
Figure out what you are taking. Make a complete master list.
rent truck

Week of closing:
Pack truck.
Go to town.
Stay with someone. (E? M?)
Put up blinds.
Change locks.
Stay at house.
Talk to Shane about painting.

For all the June birthdays

,,,,,!!HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!,,,,,

,,,,,!!HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!,,,,,

Wondering about the Reliability of the Sellers

Closing date
Okay, I get why the date is changing or trying to be changed for the closing.

Yes, we said before July 14 originally and you wanted June 22. Okay. We’re fine with that. Looking back, that is actually better.

Then you wanted to close June 7. We’re okay with that, too, even though a little early and we would have to rent back to you for two weeks.

Then you wanted to close June 27. Not so great, but I guess we can do that, too. However, it has to be June 27, because I’ve called the foundation people and that’s when they are planning to start. (Glad I didn’t just give them a credit card number over the phone, based on next paragraph.)

Now you want to close after June 27, but you don’t know when. I have a lot of work to do on the house. Some that is essential and some that is less so, but I also know that I don’t want to live in the house when the foundation is being repaired or while the walls are being repaired if they need that from the foundation repair, so…

Concrete floors
Then I called the concrete people that the email said did your acid stain. They said they didn’t do your floors. They also said that if you did them yourselves–and you did a beautiful job on the cabinets, so maybe you did–and you used the stone tone wax sealer, the color “walks out” and the sealer is a bear to get off.

Looking at it again the email said, “can match the acid stain on the concrete” so perhaps you were not meaning to imply that the concrete people did your floors. Perhaps you gave me the name of the concrete people because you know I’m not a DIYer. But they are all confused about why I would call them, since they didn’t do the original. And I’m a little confused as well.

Did you do an acid stain? Or did you not? Did someone else do your floors? Or did they not?

Also, I called the roofer that was recommended, since you strangely had the porch roof go straight down, so that anyone 5’10” or taller will hit their heads when walking onto the front porch. (Is everyone short that you know or did you just think it wouldn’t matter because no one comes in the front door?) You told me that the insurance agent has seen your roof and it didn’t have any problems.

The roofer hasn’t seen your roof yet (today or tomorrow he will though), but he said that he was surprised there was no damage. He’s replacing a Class 4 roof just one block up that was “all beat up” by that Easter hail storm.

I’m glad R was insistent that we get the porch looked at and (possibly, hopefully) changed. That will let us know if there is substantial damage to the roof that you didn’t tell us about.

If there is, I will be very upset.

Agent issue?
Agent said “stainless steel appliances” which to me implied the fridge was staying. R says not.
Agent said acid stain. Was it an acid stain or not?
Agent recommended the roofer. Apparently the roofer has an A with the Better Business Bureau, but is claiming in their yellow pages ads that they are accredited by the BBB. Which they aren’t. However, the A is only for length of time in business, not for any complaints filed against the company. The company was established in 2001. (She did mention that he was “a young guy.”)

Praying Causes Irreparable Harm

A federal judge has ordered a Texas school district to prohibit public prayer at a high school graduation ceremony.

The ruling was in response to a lawsuit filed by Christa and Danny Schultz. Their son is among those scheduled to participate in Saturday’s graduation ceremony. The judge declared that the Schultz family and their son would “suffer irreparable harm” if anyone prayed at the ceremony.

from Fox News

Violence Lessening

Steven Pinker is currently working on a book about the decline of violence through human history. We like to think that we are living in a very violent time, that the future looks dark. But the data says that violence has declined every millennium, every century, every decade. The reduction in cruelty is just astounding. So we should not focus too much on the violence that has marked the twentieth century.

from an interview with Stewart Brand

The only part of the interview I thought was actually interesting, although there are some tantalizing possibilities that are not realized.

Roman Aquarium

Ancient Roman Shipwreck May Have Held Giant Fish Tank | Archaeology & Shipwrecks | Ancient Trade of Live Fish | LiveScience

An ancient Roman shipwreck nearly 2,000 years old may once have held an aquarium onboard capable of carrying live fish, archaeologists suggest.

Curiously, its hull possessed a unique feature — near its keel was a lead pipe at least 2.7 inches (7 cm) wide and 51 inches (1.3 meters) long. Why pierce its bottom with a hole that seawater could rise up?

“Historians think that before the invention of the freezer, the only possibility to trade fish was to salt or dry it, but now we know that it was possible to move it alive also for quite a long distance,” researcher Carlo Beltrame, an archaeologist at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, told LiveScience.

A number of texts from antiquity have contentiously suggested the ancient Romans could transport live fish by sea. For instance, the scientist, Roman officer and historian Pliny the Elder spoke of transport of parrotfish from the Black Sea to the coast of Naples.

Amazing. Absolutely amazing.


Kitchen Cleaning?

Today is the “cleaning out, donating, and decluttering the least-used-shelves in the kitchen” day.

I think I need alcohol for this.

And I rarely drink.

Unfortunately when I decided to do the “not used kitchen shelves” I saw/remembered most of our entertaining stuff is there so I decided I had to pull out all the entertaining stuff so I could see what we had. That means three main areas in the house have stuff all over them. (R says “all the traffic areas.”)

I found a box of my mother and grandmother’s silver. Last summer, right after my mother died, I downsized from Mom’s 12 big boxes of silver to one banker’s book box of silver, plus the seven pieces I display. I wonder if I will ever use the silver, but it’s so beautiful and I would love to display it, if there’s space. (That depends on what we do with some extra space in the kitchen. Pantry? China cabinet?) So I haven’t decided on that.

I’ve got five give-away boxes from the fancy dishes and I still have five boxes of stuff–but it is all mostly stuff we use, though I obviously need to find a more accessible place to put it so that I will remember to use it all.

That still leaves me with two boxes of maybes. One cake pan that is very cool and was my mother’s, though I never saw her use it to make a cake. She probably bought it right before she got sick. Pewter dishes, which my mother bought for me because I love pewter.

I guess I’m not done yet. I need to get it decided and cleaned up before bed, because I’ve made a mess out of three rooms