We lost some dear friends to age, accident, and disease.
We had tragedies in families from our ward.
But through it all, I know that we will see our loved ones again. And our ward family will pull together and help those in need.
But today I want to purge out the annoying and bothersome things that happened in 2009.
I also want to count my blessings. So for every rotten thing that happened, I WILL find the silver lining in it all. And part of the blessings, the main part, I've noticed lately, is the lessons that we learn in the process.
Early in the morning, on the first day of school, I was running and pulled a muscle on the backside of my groin area.
(did you notice that I didn't post any pictures about that!!!?)
In the meantime, I was reversing all the physical progress I had made over the previous six months or so. By the end of September, I had gained back 8 pounds. I started working out again, doing Tae Bo barefoot in my basement, because the pressure of my athletic shoe hurt my baby toe. So the weight gain slowed. I "only" gained 2 more over Halloween, and another 2 over Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Years. What was I blessed to learn through this experience?
I had Mark go and get some crutches for me.
I knew that I needed to just go easy on it so that it would heal quicker.
And a couple of weeks later, just as I was thinking I could go out and run again, my naked big toe had an encounter with the razor-sharp edge of a step-stone just outside our back door. Didn't do any real damage, just sliced through the thick skin on the end, but it did stop me from trying to run.
And a few weeks after that, I kicked the bench at the kitchen table, my littlest toe taking all the impact. Again, just an annoying injury, but enough to keep me from my workouts.
We have also had appliance challenges.
First this summer, our microwave quit on us. Not a clue as to why, and it is only about 3 years old. Then our dishwasher quit. The repairman came out add charged us $75 to tell us that the heating element was out, and the motherboard needed to be replaced, all to a tune of $389 to get fixed . We thought - it's not worth it to get it fixed - until we went out and priced a new dishwasher. The space that it's located in our cabinets requires that it be a zero-clearance, meaning the controls are all in the inside top of the door, not on the front. Those babies START at $600 for a cheap-o. Rats.
Lesson learned? That we have two perfectly good dishwashers, named Rachel and Noelle. And that it's good bonding time for them to wash the dishes together.
Then my washing machine suddenly didn't spin out the rinsewater anymore, and we discovered that the belt had stretched out and come off. New belt, $30 later, plus the kindness of friend and neighbor Missy who let me borrow her washer, a week later we were back in biz. Or so we thought.
Turns out that the pulley needed to be replaced, too. $79.95 this time for that diagnosis, and $120 more to replace said pulley, parts and labor.
But I went online and ordered the part that we can put on ourselves, for only $55.00. Waiting on the part now - should be here any day.
Lesson learned? Go online to find the part you think needs to be replaced. Unless it has to do with electronics, it's not rocket science. Quit doubting ourselves.
Oh, and the dryer. It quit drying properly.
Lesson learned? To always check the insides of the dryer when dryer times get longer and longer! (And we were blessed that the house didn't burn down!)
And then, A few nights before Christmas, not a creature was stirring, except for the toilet.
We were all dead asleep, when the smoke alarms all started going off in our house.
What does this have to do with the toilet, you ask?
Well, turns out that the last person to go potty before bed clogged up the toilet, and when he/she (most likely Littlest He) flushed it, the flapper inside didn't go all the way down, and so the toilet ran and ran for several hours, and since it was clogged, it overflowed. Since we have the valve set to fill it slowly, it didn't flood quickly, but seeped down the sides and underneath and down into the ceiling of the room below, and filled the ceiling until it got over the the smoke alarm, got it wet, and set it off. Who knew that the smoke alarm would go off when the toilet overflowed? I sure didn't! (And I guess that was the lesson learned in that little incident!)
I'll bet that there is more stuff I could list here, but I won't go on and on.
But just remember -
whenever you have a challenge,
there is a lesson to be learned
and blessings to be gained from that knowledge.
Cuz, why else be here in this wonderful world but to learn, and to love our families? (Or is it to learn to love our families?)
Either way, I am just trying to make the best of it and muddle through this life without too many mishaps!