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Thursday, June 3, 2010

Forced to slow down

Note:  If you also read the family blog, the same story is posted there.

Have you ever been forced to slow down your life? I've had quite a few instances in the past few months where Heavenly Father has forced me to slow down. Normally it's been because I spent time in the sun and ended up with a migraine/nasty headache (I don't confuse the two but I've had both recently) or tummy issues (not vomiting or nausea, but just where my stomach doesn't feel good).

Then there was the day that I intended to go to Chik-Fil-A with my neighbor for lunch and ended up helping another friend try to break into her van (locked keys inside) and then her house and finally we all ended up at Chik-Fil-A. That day I decided Heavenly Father thought I needed to spend the entire day with friends.

Today, Heavenly Father decided I needed to spend the entire day at the strawberry patch. The plan - leave at 8 am, pick strawberries and back home by 10 am, make freezer jam, clean my house before pest control arrived (ants!) and then start packing my family's gear for a trip to Grandma and Grandpa's house tomorrow.


Leave home at 8 am, pick up neighbor and her kids and drive to strawberry patch (20-30 minutes away from home)
Arrive at strawberry patch, sample some strawberries as we pick them (Incredibly good! The best I've had in 20 years.).
Pay for strawberries and load all 4 kids (mine and my neighbor's) in the van.
Turn key to start van.
 "Click, click, click".
Wait a minute.
Try again.
Click, click, click.
Repeat until giving up.
Call Love. He's in at work, an hour from our home. This was not his week to drive so he doesn't have a car and left his cell phone at home.
My neighbor calls her husband. He's at work - without enough gas to drive out to us and he left his wallet at home (so he has no way to buy gas to come get her).
Call closest mechanic - he's out for the next hour.
My Mom, who lives close to the patch and has a vehicle that would hold all of us, is out of town.
Think - if we leave the van for someone to fix it there or to tow it back, who can we call to pick up all 6 of us since we won't fit in the tow truck.
At 10 am, Love leaves work with a coworker who drops him off at home.
My neighbor's husband borrows a work vehicle and picks up his family.
The girls and I hang out at the strawberry patch.
Love goes to the auto parts store and confers with them - it's the starter.
12 pm Love purchases a starter and drives to patch, stopping at McDonald's on the way to get lunch for his stranded family.
1 pm Love arrives with food, tools and a starter. Everyone enjoys lunch.
After eating, Love installs the new starter.
We try starting the van.
Click, click, click.
Look in phone book for closest auto parts store for battery.
Love experiments with the van and believes we have another problem.
Love calls the tow truck to take our van to our mechanic - estimated arrive 1 hour.
I call our neighbor to come pick up the girls and take them to her house - estimated arrive 30 min.
I move everything in the van to the car.
Tow truck arrives and tries jumpstarting with their power jumper (or whatever you call it).
Van starts.
Neighbor arrives and takes our girls to her house.
Love and the wonderful guy from the tow truck try turning off the van to see if it will start on its own.
Click, click, click.
They rejump the van - success.
I drive van, with Love following, back to town.
4 pm-ish Arrive at our house, Love drives the van to auto parts store and gets a new battery.
I do some cleaning to prepare for Pest control (did I mention the ants?)
4:30 pm Pest Control arrives and Love calls to say he's headed home with a van that will start again.
4:45 pm Pest control informs Love that our immediate neighbor's house has active termites!
5:40 pm pest control finally finishes spraying for ants inside and outside our home and yard.

We were so blessed today!

Why? We were blessed to have the van break down at a location with water, shade, plenty to eat (strawberries), a bathroom (port-a-potty) and a swingset.
We were blessed that this did not happen halfway to Grandma and Grandpa's tomorrow.
We were blessed that this did not happen halfway to our vacation later this summer.
We were blessed with an incredibly detailed pest control company!  Pricing is comparable to what we've spent every other year as we've fought these ants but never have any of the other pest control companies spent almost an hour and a half searching for the ants (and termites now) and spraying.
We were blessed with a very friendly, helpful, and informative guy from the Towing company. I'd heard others recommend them but I have to say, he was better than I expected.
We were blessed with a friendly and patient owner at the strawberry patch who had no problems with us hanging out there all day.

After all these blessings, I'm going to be pondering what I'm needing to change so that Heavenly Father doesn't need to send me any more "Slow down!" messages. And we're ready to relax for the evening.

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