Tuesday, November 6, 2012

New Adults and Fires

Boy, do I love this photograph, even if you can see the section of wall that Paul hasn't finished yet above the office doorway!  This was taken last Friday, on Will's 18th birthday.  He was genuinely affectionate in this photo, which has been a problem for him since he was about 11.  He's always been really squeamish about showing or receiving physical affection from me.  That has caused me no small amount of stress, worrying about how he'll manage as a husband someday!  Of course, I suppose a healthy dose of lust will help with that... And, I happen to look good in this photo, too, which greatly increases my amount of affection for it!

So, yes, Will is now 18.  He votes tonight for the first time.  We got him registered for the Selective Service last night.  He's been putting in applications in several places (a lot of businesses now will not even accept applications from anyone under 18).  Today we went and got his driver's license changed from "provisional" to "regular."  We changed his checking account.  Once he turned 18 our bank was quick to drop his "student" account and transfer it to a high-fee one.  The banker we spoke with today helped us finagle a plan where Will will enroll for Bill Pay.  Every month his account will generate a $5 check to us to pay for his texting.  This will save him $11 in monthly fees just for the privilege of having a checking account.

Lizzie had her 4th birthday last Wed.  It was special because it was her first birthday with us.  I think she enjoyed herself.  I really enjoyed shopping for a little girl, that's for sure!  This Friday she is going to have her first sleep-over at her "other" parents' house (her former foster parents who are adopting her bio brother).   We've seen so much progress with her.  I know she'll do great.  However, she does have her first counseling session this Thurs.  Even with as good as she is doing, I think it's probably the better part of wisdom to get some outside help to help her cope with what has been a very unusual life so far.

Sam turned 5  two weeks ago.  Maybe I already mentioned that in a blog.  That means it's also been 5 years since my stroke.  I recognize now that I am never going to be fully recovered from that, physically.  But that's ok.  I've been given a whole lot back and things could have been so different.  I remember being in the hospital that day, scared to death that I wouldn't be able to take care of my family any more.  Not only was I able to do that, but God increased our family size along the way!  And I'm able to take care of them, too!

Sam cracked me up the other day.  One little "thing" we've had with Lizzie is that her biological mother taught her to dance and sing this song, "I'm sexy and I know it."  I only had to shake my head at her once and she learned that was not an appropriate thing to do in our home.  It's never been a real problem.  When Birth Mom still had rights, I would hear Lizzie sing it on the phone to her, but I understood that this was her way of "connecting" with her mother.  Of course, I have some opinions on THAT, but I just ignored it and it was never a problem outside of the phone calls.  Well, Sam would hear her side of these phone conversations.  The other day I heard him singing, "I'm sixty and I know it!"  Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Our neighbor's house burned to the ground early last Monday morning.  It was just the freakiest thing.  Paul woke me up at 4 am and asked if Jenn's house was supposed to be on fire.  I thought he was sleepwalking and asking really dumb questions in his sleep!  I looked outside and Jenn's house was just gone!  It was still on fire, but it was burned to the foundation already.  It was an older, modular home and those go fast when on fire.  We never heard or saw a thing - nobody did.  So, Paul called 911.  I threw on some clothes and went outside to look.  Paul went over and pounded on the mayor's door (also a neighbor of Jenn's).  He (the mayor) was just dumbfounded.  Then, we walked over to the neighbor on the other side of Jenn's to alert them.  We watched the fire inching closer and closer to the propane tank, which made us very, very nervous.  If that thing blew up, all our houses would go, probably.  We kept hearing this high-pitched, whistling noise and Paul explained that that was propane burning.  I didn't know burning propane made a sound, other than BOOM!  Eventually, he went over and shut off the tank.  I was so scared that he would be killed, but he wasn't - obviously.

The providential thing was that Jenn and the kids had just moved out the day before.  They weren't quite done moving, but most of their stuff was out.  Their animals were still in the house, though.  The new owners were scheduled to take possession on Nov.. 7.  THAT won't be happening now!

It took 20 min, but the fire dept finally came and put out the fire.  20 min is actually good time, considering that they are a volunteer force from Pleasantville.  But it still makes me nervous to know that it takes that long for help to arrive.  I guess that's a major drawback to living in the boonies.

I have had a nearly life-long fear of house fires and this did nothing to put those fears to rest.  Even now, the ashy heap that used to be her home still makes me shiver every time I pull into my driveway.  It is just so weird to know and remember a house that used to be there - and now it isn't.

May the Lord protect our homes - and give us grace to live through the nightmare should something ever happen to destroy them.

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