(This is our next door neighbors' house - our sidewalks were cleared by the wind, and this is where it went!)
(Our front yard - a winter wonderland with drifts up to our windowsill!)
But we had church. We made it there. The men spent the morning digging out the sidewalks and helping people from their cars to the doors. I sat in my office until worship started, answering the dozens of phone calls asking if church was still on...
(The hubby digging out the sidewalk to the door! Believe it or not, in that vast expanse of knee-high snow, there is a walkway - the trick is to find it!)
(That's the drift outside my office window - 4 feet, maybe?)
Two of my confirmation kids made it to church - and both wanted to be outside shoveling. Crazy kids! (One of them and his dad shoveled out a neighbor of the church and her two little kids - bonus points for them!)
The children's Christmas program was scheduled for today - we had about seven kids show up - and they sang their little hearts out! (But they must have had a lot of excitement playing in or watching the snow the night before... There was a LOT of yawning during their performance! Hubby and I got the giggles.)
(Do you see that?! Joseph's already stifling a yawn!)
(Our brave and wonderful group!)
The new members were supposed to take their vows at church today - Hubby and I included (I've worked there 6.5 years, we love it, and decided it was time). Out of the six expected new members, three of us were there. And only 51 others in worship... That's a hearty group!
After church was supposed to be our big "Living a Better Story" celebration - I had decorated the room last week, a simple lunch of peanut butter sandwiches with ALL the fixings was served. I looked around the room and thought, "maybe we should do this next week..." But NO! As soon as I started to talk about telling our stories, people came right up to the microphone to tell theirs! We had about ten people jump up to tell their story! And by then, it going on 12:15pm and people had to start leaving for other plans for their day - so we decided to continue the stories NEXT week! Too cool. This has been such an uplifting and fun project!
Next, Hubby and I came home to see our neighbor across the street finally digging out their home! This is a family with a different ethnic origin - we've tried over the last 5 years to get to know them, but they've never wanted anything to do with us. Their snow was halfway up their garage door, covering both cars parked in the driveway, it was waist-high throughout their whole yard - including over their sidewalk to the front door, and 3/4 of the way covering the front door. I had been worried about them overnight - wondering if one of them needed help, would they be able to get out? So when we got home from church, the Hubby took his shovel over to help the man dig out. After only a few minutes Hubby came home and said, "Well. We know where we stand with them." The man told him he didn't want his help.
Isn't that sad? When we're trying so hard to cultivate a feeling of community and neighborly-ness, we can't even help our neighbor shovel out after a huge snowstorm? 3 hours later, he was still at it... By himself.
Later, after our naps, we went to a retirement party for one of Hubby's former employees; did a little Christmas shopping; wrapped presents; and sat by the fire...
It's late and the shovels have finally stopped scraping outside. Hopefully, everyone is safe and warm. It's been an exciting - and relaxing (?) weekend. The last big snowstorm like this was in 1991 - and it was almost 10 inches MORE than what we got yesterday! I have to admit... once every 19 years, it's pretty cool.
Things I am thankful for today:
1. A hubby who likes to shovel!
2. All the people at church who jumped in to help.
3. All the laughter surrounding this funny weekend!
4. A note from a friend, who's using the money I gave her for our shared dinner to do a "Living a Better Story" project of her own! That totally made my day! (In fact, Jill - the $5 I gave you was actually my "God money". I gave it to you by accident and replaced it in my wallet when I got home. I think it's been prayed over so many times that it just told you it wanted to be part of this project... Too funny!)
5. A reliable car.
6. A generous husband.
7. Talking to Emily on the phone - and Fin's love of "beautiful sparkly dresses!"
8. A pile of wrapped presents under the tree!
9. Egg nog.
10. Vosges "Woolamooloo" candy bar. Mmm...