Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I was thinking yesterday that I should write a little about the drought we are having... maybe post a few pictures of the ground in the pasture cracked open, or of the scorched acres from the two wildfires our county had during the past week. (One just south of town, one just west of town... thankfully none east of town where we live!)

But I woke up this morning to snow... It won't end the drought but it should stop the wildfires for awhile at least.

We'll be home today, after a lot of running around the past week or so. We've had a bunch of doctor appointments, shopped for some homeschool supplies we'd run out of, and worked at the soup kitchen.

We really  enjoy working at the soup kitchen, although it's a culture shock for us too. Going from our quiet little acreage, where we have to drive 4 miles just to get to a grocery store and the biggest crowd we are ever in is in church on Sunday... to driving into the middle of Denver, into a rough neighborhood, to spend several hours serving dinner to 300-400 homeless men and women. So it's a bit of a shock, but it's also an amazing experience... serving the men ( and a few women) food, making a little conversation, watching M "high-five" some guy he's never seen before, and act like he's his best friend.

Looking into their eyes as I serve them I see so many different things... emptiness and disconnect in some, anger and defiance in a few more, but mostly I see goodness... gratitude... intelligence... humor... friendliness... patience...kindness... dignity.  They seem more open in some ways than many people... looking me right in the eye, thanking me, cracking a joke, or trying to tease me into giving them a little extra (which I would if I could, but would mean someone at the end of the line might not get any).

Serving them serves me... does for me...fills me up... much more than that little bit of soup I dish up does for them. Each time we work there is someone I meet who seems to stick with me during the time until we work again. This time it was a woman who came to me for soup just as I was trying to scoop the last of the soup (from the very last pot...) into a bowl. She was at the end of the line, so had waited while 250+ people had been served first. She said she'd been sick in bed all day, and had only gotten out of bed to come and get soup. All I had to give her was half a ladle of the scraps from the bottom of the pot. The "soup" part of the soup was gone by then... and so she got half a cup of veggies, a few noodles and a bit of chicken. She didn't complain... just thanked me for the soup and left. I was humbled.

This next month has five Fridays so it looks like we might be working the soup kitchen two Fridays in a row. That would be stressful (I always worry about safety... there was a fight when we worked in Feb. and the kids both have to be right next to an adult the whole time we are there), but it would also be good.

School is going well... Giving M and R responsibility for some of their own school work has turned out to be a very positive thing. They have both been pretty good about getting it done before our sit down school time in the afternoon. It gives them both a little more independence, and also opens up extra time in the afternoon for the school work they need my help with.

I guess I'll close with some good news we got over the weekend... E (dd#1) and her husband are expecting again! :) They already have three children, a daughter who is 8 and sons who are 6 and 4. We are so excited about a new baby in the family... and so happy for them.

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Enjoy your day!

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