Birthday sidebar

So tied up in the last minute hoopla, I thought for a moment that I’d missed it. 😳

But I didn’t. 

This is for my good friend: fellow survivor of work insanity, man of faith and music, tennis enthusiast, blogger, poet, collector of mostly-unread books, sometime hiker,  frequent dreamer of oft-nostalgic dreams, and possibly future owner of a general store. 🙂

Best as always to you and yours, and very happy birthday wishes today! 🎂

Sky candy

Five perfect minutes of neon cotton candy skies this morning. 

Brief and beautiful

Early Thursday 

I am awake every few hours, the last two times from dreams and then, finally, from the lightness of sleep that comes when one is afraid of missing the alarm. 

(I shouldn’t worry, I have 2 phones both set to wake me, but that one day that Apple pushed an update to me overnight that locked me out of my phone until I (found and) entered my AppleID haunts me.)

But that last time this morning I could have fit in another sleep cycle if I was capable of math so early. So I make an effort to imprint the cutoff time into my memory en route to the office, for future reference. 

Still, it’s quiet time in the morning and I tell myself that rest is almost – almost – as good as sleep. 

On my way out the door, the half moon peeks out of clouds to greet me, so bright and lovely that I regret not getting a picture. But then, my hands are full, and spilling my coffee on myself or falling down my front steps both seem like likely outcomes and neither of them are appealing options. 

So I savor that moon as I drive 695 – that it should be so lovely, evidence that You are lovely… that we should perceive it as beautiful, evidence that we are made for and by You, to see and to long for Your beauty. 

Then the northward turn onto 95, and the moon out of sight, the sky a Rorschach’s test. By the time I reach Belcamp, the clouds are stretching out, overtaking the sky. At the DE border, only the occasional break in the clouds hints that there is a morning happening somewhere above the gloom. 

Rain drizzles as I pull in at the office. 

So begins the work day. 

Tired

So. Tired. 

Fitbit says I’m getting my hours of sleep in, but it doesn’t change anything. I’m tired. Thoroughly exhausted. Caffeine barely penetrates the mental fog. I drag myself through my workout — energy begets energy, Miss Barri would say — but it’s a drag. 

It’s the turn of the weather. It’s the pollen. It’s this headache. It’s like…

It’s like I’m sad. 

Whatever it is, still God is good. There’s work to be done. Trips to make. Friends to see. So much that’s a blessing. 

This too will pass. It’s just that I’m so tired

#FitbitAdventures for today, trying to bring some enthusiasm to my workout

Choosing thankfulness

When the clock says I could sleep 2 more hours and my body is having none of it – having, say, awakened at 3am and refusing to go back to sleep – my first thought is along the lines of, “ugh, what could be worse?”

A lot, actually.  Here’s some (10) ways I could be thankful in the midst of that circumstance … aka /ways in which I am undeservedly blessed/:

  1. I woke up at all
  2. I woke up in a bed, in a place that is safe and has heat
  3. I woke up because I woke up, not because I was in pain
  4. The only reason the alarm matters at all is because I have a job
  5. I’m waking up thinking about that job, not (been there, hate that) about how I’ll find one or having to interview this morning 
  6. I woke up 2 hours early, not 2 hours late
  7. That extra time was quiet and peaceful and worshipful
  8. That extra time meant I wasn’t racing to set up coffee (which I’d forgotten last night)
  9. I was out the door a few minutes early, and therefore just in drizzle and not full-on thunderstorms en route
  10. God is good, all the time. Even when I’m exhausted and would rather be sleeping. 

Commuter skies

In the darkness of 5:36 am, from 2  lanes away, I pass a bobtail as it exits to 1 South onto Bel Air Road. In the headlights of the intervening lanes, I see the familiar red stripe, and check for the familiar logo…. 

Yes, indeed. That driver making his morning deliveries doesn’t know he (or she) carries not only propane but also memories of times past and friends far away; a good omen, I decide, for this bleary and exhausted morning. 

And then I am at 95 and the northbound portion of my day. 

By the time I reach Belcamp, the sky is already parsing subtly from black into fathomless shades of a starless deep blue. 

As I cross the Susquehanna, and get a brief glimpse of horizon, I can see the promise of the light to come. 

As I reach Elkton, ahead of the crossover to Delaware, the sky is forming stripes of pink and purple that will grow to consume the sky as I pull into the office, with the sunrise. 

A bright and blessed morning to you!

Morning, Near Elkton MD

Unseasonable 

The ornamental plum out front is starting to bloom. Tiny bunches of soft pink petals bloom at the heretofore sun-kissed extremities. They are an extra pop of color in the gray of this rainy morning. 

I regret to inform my poor tree (and you as well, dear reader) that in scant hours this rain will be snow. 

And here I thought we might get away with no winter at all. 

Pre Daylight Savings: 6:15am

This weekend we’ll set the clocks forward. The morning will look different. For reference….  Today, the sun was just about the clear the treeline at 6:15am.  

Rising Sun

I started making Wilmington a regular (more or less) thing in the New Year. It was a shock to the system on two fronts: (1) I had spent virtually all of the prior year working from home (the occasional meeting in NYC, NJ, PA, or DE notwithstanding) which meant my commute that year was basically “walk down the hall,” and (2) the short commute and private home office meant I could go from bed to office in minutes if I needed to. So I could -if I wanted/needed to- sleep in, and still start earlier than anyone else on my team. 

I never had to be up dark-and-early. 

On Wilmington days, the alarms go off before 5, so I can be on the road by 5:30 at the latest (so everything I need gets packed up, set up or set out the night before). 

When I started making this trip, the days were short. The “morning” part of fivethirty in the morning was strictly hypothetical. Black sky with stars equals night, by my reckoning. Ninety-odd minutes later when I pulled into the office lot, it would still be dark

Like, really dark. Can’t see any landmarks dark. Need those footpath lights to keep from falling dark. 

But the seasons turn, and pretty soon it would be almost dusky as I reached the office.  

And then it was dusky as I crossed into Delaware, grey pre-morning at the office. And today…

Oh lovely day, oh gracious and glorious God…

Today the sky was dusky as I crossed the Susquehanna, and I watched the sun rise as I drove, and the sky was painted and the sun rose red and it was well and truly day by the time I reached the office. 

Daylight savings is coming next week to throw the morning out of kilter for a few more weeks. But this morning was simply beautiful. And I’m thankful for it. 


Also, thematically, I recently earned my Japan badge on #Fitbit. Land of the rising sun, you know. 

Winter flotsam (with emoji)

It was never cold enough in my old place to need warm pajamas. Year round it could be mostly tanks, tees and shorts. 👚

My warm pjs all lived at my folks’ place, until they moved. 🏡

Now I regularly reach for sweatpants, invariably too long for me, but that works too since the elastic at the ankles is most comfortable around my feet vs my calves.. and on one ridiculously cold morning, I woke up to pull my entire foot up inside my sweats, the elastic closing up beneath my feet, still shivering and aching with cold under covers and afghans. ❄️

Winter is for the birds! 🐧

That said, with this latest warm snap, the birds seem to be returning back (too early, when winter surely isn’t over yet).  Valentine’s Day was just last week, after all! ❤ 

The grocery store has leftover flowers for cheap now. I almost caved and bought myself some, but I know they won’t last now. (Apparently my folks considered bringing me some on The Day,which was sweet if silly, but the absolute highway robbery was prohibitive.) 🌺 

I also managed to forego buying myself leftover Valentines chocolate. It was a narrow escape, actually, but it’s not worth undoing all the efforts to get myself back to a healthy place. 🏃🏻‍♀️

So say I! 😉

Stay warm and take good care out there! 👍🏻