Blessed through and through

When your nest is technically 'empty', when it's just the two of you, when you know that over the years the places you live will become smaller and smaller and smaller - why buy a two story, four bedroom house with a large kitchen and large living room, and an overflow bonus room (for those who actually want to watch the game)? Why not move into an apartment with one bedroom, and maybe an extra one for when someone comes to visit, or to put the family computer. Wouldn't that do just fine?

Because if you are really blessed you will move somewhere, get hooked into a church and other people's lives, have family and friends who love you and come for visits - whether it's a day or a week, or if they are really, really special people for more than a week. And that takes room to sprawl.

It takes a kitchen big enough to hold more than one crockpot, pitchers of ice tea - sweet and unsweetened; chairs that always live around the table and those you drag in from the garage, dust off with a lick and a promise; platters and bowls full of yummy dishes that you made or others brought; a big sink for rinsing off everything at the end of it all, and a dishwasher that you load up, hit 'start' and hear the background sound of it running, swishing soap over all of them, to leave them squeaky clean for yet another get-together.

Such was yesterday - a house stuffed full to the brim plus some; I counted 41 and am quite sure this house has never held that many, maybe never half that many. We kept seeing them coming in the front door, or the back door, or the garage door, or up the walk on the side. Pouring onto the boathouse, gazing out at the lake, throwing horse shoes to the sound of laughter and bragging, curled up on every seat available in our sunporch laughing and sharing, under the carport sharing a meal, or on the deck with conversation made up of their own memories of homemade ice cream.

We saw them taking the golf cart out for a spin in the neighborhood. They watched the sun go down with us then they loaded up their chairs and coolers and such, and we sent them off with prayers for a safe ride home

After the house was empty again, except for the two of us, after the cats had been given freedom to roam from room to room, sniffing here and there the funny smells of recent visitors, after everything had been cleared away and all was quiet, we saw crumbs of pie crust on the floor, little smears of this and that, and it made us smile to remember back on the day.

That's the reason you need a big house, and room to roam. If you're really blessed, and we are, then sometimes, just once in awhile, the rooms will be full of bodies and the air will be filled with the music of voices. Who needed to take photos? We didn't bother with a single one. Rather, we just enjoyed being with them all, listening and watching and soaking it all in. Blessed, blessed, blessed!

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