Today, I feel truly blessed. I’m not talking about the usual blessings we pause to think about around Thanksgiving, like health, family, friends, a house that’s paid for and a decent amount of money to live on. Today’s blessings came from knowing that at last I have some help with the chores around my place.
Living alone means all the work falls on me. That includes cleaning the inside of the house and maintaining the outside, feeding my critters, cutting fallen trees off my wooded trails, and pasture work such as bush-hogging, seed-planting and fertilizing. When you add to that the fact that I write, serve as contest director for my professional media organization, serve on my county library board, spend oodles of time with my grandsons, ride my horses, and keep my horse trailer, truck and car serviced, you might understand why I always feel so tired and overwhelmed.
Today was the exception. It started with a good night’s sleep, a rarity for me. When I got up this morning, I felt almost refreshed, and the cold that has had its grip on my head for a week seemed to be receding. But the day just kept getting better. First the two women I hired to clean my house showed up. I’ve had house cleaners before, including one of these women. I usually suspend the service after a few months, primarily because of the preparations I have to make, like putting things away and locking the dogs in their outdoor pen. It seems like house cleaners just get in my way after a while. But I’m keeping these ladies, at least for once a month.
Shortly after the pair arrived, a youth from my church showed up to finish blowing leaves from my driveway and to clear the cocklebur bushes from around the pond. Those burs get caught in the fleece of my goat and llamas and I have the devil of a time combing them out. I piddled around in my office while the house keepers worked in other areas, catching up in some bookkeeping in Quicken and tidying my desk so they could get to the top to dust it. Then I made myself a cup of tea. As I sat on the front porch sipping the tea, looking at the sun highlighting the gold and rust colored leaves, the most peaceful feeling washed over me. I felt liberated, without a care in the world. Usually, I’m in a state of panic, especially the day before Thanksgiving. Just knowing I had some help gave a calm, serene feeling.
Next week, I’ll have even more help, the thoughts of which added to today’s serenity. An old friend named Floyd is coming Monday to pressure-wash my log house, stain and seal it, then to paint the outside trim work and facia boards. He’ll also handle several other minor projects that have been bugging me for some time.
When Floyd gave me his price for these chores I nearly fell over from shock. He’s charging me a third of what another painter had bid, and half of what it cost me a year ago. And those were pretty good prices, too. He also pointed out that my front gate needs painting, something I’ve been keenly aware of, so we’re adding this to my “to do” list. How can he do all this so cheap? He’s comfortable in retirement, and considers it part of his Christian ministry to help widows. God bless him!
I cannot express how it feels to know all of these projects and chores are being taken care of. I’m now free to handle some of those that only I can do, such as digitize my old home movies. That one has been needling me for several years.
Thanksgiving will truly be a day for giving thanks this year.