Perfect Timing

At some point I know this nest will be empty.  It could have been today but, because of a divine intervention roughly eight years ago, that isn’t yet staring me in the face.

There’s one less bird landing in this roost these days. He has made his own nest in Wichita – a whole 7.6 miles away. These first few days I’ve been keenly aware of a little less ambient heat, more from a feeling of lost security than from the lack of consumption.

Just like the first time this little birdie flew the coop [for college], this is a poignant moment. I’m proud. I’m worried. I want him to come have lunch with me every day just so I can make sure he’s eating right.

The other day, he sent me a text that asked if I’d left him a card.  Cards are kind of my thing – if I want you to know I love you; that I’m thinking about you, I give a card.

He found a card in a suitcase we had given him when he moved out.  After being used and abused many times by many people through many states and a few countries, the suitcase had a flat wheel and we were just going to throw it out anyway.  I wish I had thought to leave a card in it, but I hadn’t. The envelope wasn’t addressed but the card was signed, ‘All my love, Heather’, so he figured it had been forgotten in the suitcase.

The card wasn’t the only thing he found in that suitcase.

There was also a cross necklace that my husband bought it for me in Tel Aviv, Israel. Ten years ago.

At first thought, you might think the necklace had been forgotten and was ten years too late.  Actually, although my husband maybe had forgotten about the necklace (that was the suitcase he used to travel back and forth to Israel every four weeks for six months back in 2002), God had not forgotten.

And the giving was right on time.

For the past several months my heart has been heavy and I have been lamenting over being a part-time single parent; not having my husband home during the week. I have been sulking over not being able to have dinner together on a Tuesday night or go for an after-dinner stroll through the neighborhood. It’s been an all-out pity party.

When I got that necklace this week, it made me reflect back to the time it was purchased (and intended to be given) and how, at that time, I saw my husband only every four weeks – not every weekend, like I am blessed to now.

Blessed.

Yes, I am blessed, more than I will ever comprehend, with my family, friends, and a loving God who withholds gifts until just the right time.

His time.

No Ink Joy

I really should never watch TV.  Or, at least, not the commercials.   I am a commercial sucker; a TV advertisers dream.  And that has gotten me a lot of unused stuff.

The one exception:  One night back in 2002, while my husband was away working in Israel, I was watching TV with my kids and an infomercial came on about the FoodSaver.  The kids thought that would be a perfect addition to our kitchen and that I would get a lot of use out of one of those neat gadgets.  I agreed and I ordered one.  That actually turned out to be a good investment.   I used that FoodSaver for ten years before I replaced with a newer version.

I can’t even count the number of products I have tried because I saw it on TV that turned out to be a flop.  But last week I added to that count.

A Pen by Any Other Name

Those close to me know that I have a fascination with pens that borders on fetish obsession.  One pen is never ever enough.  There are different pens for different paper and different moods.  And don’t get me started on ink color.

There have been times I’ve felt I needed a little inspiration and have gone out in search of a new pen to write with.  It’s almost as if having a new pen will put new thoughts into my head and those thoughts will come flowing out onto my paper.  A new pen can be magical.

OK, so maybe it is a fetish.

My writing joy is not limited to clacking on the keyboard.  In fact, my love of writing came first from penning in my journals.  My handwriting sometimes gives a very clear indication of my writing mood.  I can look back through my journals and spot frustrated entries just by the handwriting.  And haven’t we all had times where we’ve dotted our i’s with little hearts or stars?  Well, maybe just us girls.

Last week I saw a Paper Mate commercial on the new InkJoy pens.  Ooooo…..Ahhhh……

InkJoy.

The name alone caught my attention.  “Find your InkJoy” the commercial encourages.  They’re supposed to be revolutionary.  A product with ‘Joy’ in the name must evoke feelings of the same name and thereby earning some level of perfection.   I had to find out what makes them so special they score their own commercial.

No Joy

Pen and paper must connect with just the right amount of friction.  Not enough ink flow causes too much friction and requires a greater amount of pressure by the user.  This user’s hand tires quickly with these pens.  Too much ink flow causes…well, too much ink.  And that means a messy page.

This InkJoy pen is hard to explain.  It’s like a rollerball without the “scratch” but writes more like a gel pen without the wet mess.  So, in a sense, I guess it’s the best of both worlds.  Those worlds.

But what if you prefer a ball point?  That’s me; I am a ball point girl.  I don’t like a scratchy pen or a wet, messy pen.  Ball points are neither of these.  They’re simple.  I pick up my pen quite a bit when I write and ball points don’t “carry over.”  What I’m talking about is the fine ink line that connects ‘pen up’ to ‘pen down.’

I’m getting that little, annoying, fine, carry-over line with my InkJoy pen.  Darn.  Not perfection.  No joy.

Sometimes (most of the time, I suspect) the end needs to be differentiated from the beginning.  Otherwise you wouldn’t know where a word ends and the next one begins.  All of life would justbeoneverylongsentence.  No Child Left Behind would have to change to Good Luck Kid.

We all need pause.  And we need our pens to as well.

So, into the pen drawer goes the InkJoy pen.  I’m going back to my stole-it-from-a-hotel ball point pen.  Don’t judge.  It was used.  And you know you’ve done it too.

No worries, Paper Mate.  I bought the new ComfortMate ULTRA mechanical pencils too.  Because not everything can be written in ball point.

Eat Mor Chikin

Where has the summer gone?  I had so many plans for fun stuff when summer started and I don’t think we’ve done a single one.  We were going to visit Tanganyika Wildlife Park, because we haven’t been there yet.  We were going to visit the Sedgwick County Zoo.  Haven’t been there either.  We were even going to try to visit the Underground Salt Museum.  Nope, haven’t done that either.  Local attractions have lost out to busyness of lawn care, planting some seeds and watching them grow, and multiple trips to libraries around the city.

Well, that all changed yesterday.

Chick-fil-A became a local attraction in Wichita before the paint had even dried.  We had tried to eat there several times but the very long line, usually spilling out the door and into the parking lot, always made us rethink our lunch destination.  It’s just chicken after all.

Yesterday was Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day as determined by Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum, who felt the liberal’s attack on Chick-fil-A’s president and CEO, Dan Cathy, was unjust, unconstitutional and unfounded.  They urged people to eat at Chick-Fil-A on Wednesday to show support for our First Amendment right of free speech.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, Google it.

After reading an article on the opinion page of the Wichita Eagle yesterday about the liberal’s reaction to Cathy’s comments in support of traditional marriage, I decided to support his right to say what he wants in our free country without his livelihood being boycotted by hypocrites.

So off we go to wait with the masses in line for some chicken nuggets.

Now I thought I was being smart by getting there ahead of the lunch crowd.  Apparently, a lot of other people thought the same thing.  Here’s what the walk-up line looked like from my drive-thru vantage point at 11am:

Make that 11:15ish.  It took 15 minutes just to get off the street and into the drive-thru lane.

Today’s news is that Chick-fil-A had record sales yesterday, on Appreciation Day.  Thousands and thousands of people all over the United States appreciated their chicken from one of the 1600 Chick-fil-A restaurants.  (Insert giggle.)

I guess trying to boycott Chick-fil-A was not such a great idea.

AbcNews anchor, Diane Sawyer, said this confirms that the fast-food chain is the new ground zero in the culture wars over gay marriage.  I think that’s stretching it a little.  Actually, I think that is preposterous.  But we all have the right to say what we want in our free country.

People will stand on principal for no food.  This time we got really good chicken nuggets.

Summer fun….check.