Yesterday was both a blessed day of rest and of great accomplishment for me at home.
I set my alarm to wake me up with a Sacred Harp singing tape, and I continued to listen to it until I departed for worship services. Brother Chris presented an insightful sermon on four types of fruit we might bear when abiding with Christ, and the fellowship at lunch with my brothers and sisters in the church was especially comforting. God blessed us with a wonderful time together!
The Z family was heading to "Family Day" at the symphony with their eldest, so I was put in charge of Miss Abigail who was in rare form yesterday afternoon. I didn't know whether to attribute her demeanor to being exhausted, being away from her parents, or being with me in particular, but the little one would not drop her stone face... even when greeted by many in the grocery store. The only slight change appeared as I drove through the car wash (which I thought would create a much bigger reaction.) Less than two miles down the road, Abi was out like a light and remained that way until Mama and Daddy came to pick her up. (So, I guess I received my answer.)
I was looking forward to some play time but was also relieved that naptime lasted so long - as I had many tasks on my to-do list, namely laundry washing and drying, dish washing and putting away, fridge cleaning out, sweeping, mopping, sorting, mailing, dusting... Basically, the whole house was a wreck after a couple weeks of neglect. And, by the end of the night, I am thankful I was able to cross off most chores, with only a few remaining for this evening.
During the rush of tasks, it was also extremely important that I hurry to start my pot of chili. In more years than not, our family would drag the card table out of the closet and into the living room so that we could set it up in front of the TV. (This was one of the RARE occasions when we wouldn't eat together at the kitchen table.) By then, Mom would have a steaming hot pot of chili going, and the scent would fill the house. One by one, we'd file through the line in the kitchen, obtaining our own bowl of soup. (Some of us like it from the bottom, and some of us like it from the top.) We'd then fill our plates with our usual offerings: small pickles, oyster crackers, cheese, cheese, and more cheese. Sometimes, we'd even have Fritos and sour cream. Then, I'd attempt the long walk into the living room without spilling my chili. (This was always quite an exercise for me. Still is!) Our small Superbowl parties were a special and fun family time for us to have - with just the four of us. Nothing fancy, but fond memories for me. So, even though I was by myself, I decided to have a Superbowl party for one, sit down in my (fairly) clean house, relax, and enjoy the game and commercials. I realize our beloved Bears did not triumph, but I could not help but be happy about my second favorite team winning the big game. (Now, if it had been anyone else.... ) Thanks to the many who called, sent text and email messages, or stopped by to offer condolescenses.... or, in most cases, completely rub my face in it. Such kind friends!
Thanks also goes out to Mom for reminding me of the simple recipe that reminds me of home. (We are midwestern-beans-in-our-not-too-spicy-chili kind of people.)