Not the typical back-to-school pace

Today is one of those rare days that I really have no where to go. I did pick Terry up from the mechanic’s garage where his Mazda is being serviced today, and we stopped for a few essentials at Target, but the remainder of the day is being spent at home, catching up on a few chores. In looking at the calendar, I think the next two days may be more of the same for which I am not complaining.

I helped with a funeral reception at church on Saturday for a long-time member who died at the age of 101. Her life was quite amazing, and although I did not know her, her story made me wish I had. Single mother, one child, divorced in 1954, who worked as a bookkeeper until she was 76 years old. She sang in the choir, taught Sunday School, and was well known for sending cards and notes to people. Her daughter convinced her to move to Seattle when she was 80 so as to be close to family as there was none here in Fresno. Even though she left her beloved church, she continued to send letters, cards, notes, and financial support. It only made sense to have her memorial service at the church. She had pretty much written her own service and she wanted pie served at the reception.

Sunday I was in charge of the coffee fellowship at church. In nice weather we do this in the garden, outside the sanctuary doors. We set up a table and bring coffee, punch, and delectable tidbits for people to enjoy as they visit with one another after church. I really like the custom, and since I serve on the Deacon Board, I get requests to provide the service every few months. Sunday was the third time Terry and I have done this. I made caramel bars and also served salami/cheese/tomato bites. There was even some pie left over from the funeral reception so we had that, too. Every bit of the food was eaten. I especially liked that.

The next day was a Ladies Who Lunch outing. In July there were 8 of us, but on Monday only 5 of us were able to make it. We dined at an old establishment (over 100 years in downtown Fresno) that has moved to a new building. The old location is being torn down for high speed rail, and since the restaurant and bar are of such historical significance, the city offered the owner a special location–in the convention center parking lot–to build a new restaurant. It is a beautiful building and even contains the bar from the old location. The food is a bit more expensive but still as tasty as ever. My New York pastrami sandwich was so large that I brought half of it home for Terry to have for dinner. A friend and I are going back in a couple of weeks in honor of my birth month.

On Tuesday I picked up donuts at one of best purveyors of such decadence. The business is owned by the family of my former students. An immigrant family that has assimilated and become highly successful. The oldest daughter was the secretary for the Class of 2000 for which I was the advisor. She was such a hard worker. I always check up on her when I pick up donuts and yesterday was no different. She has a 5-month old daughter now, the first grandchild for the family. Of course I had to look at photos and videos of this darling child. The grandmother is over the moon.

I delivered the donuts to the office staff at Columbia and picked up a school calendar while chatting with a few of the staff about their summer. The teachers and principal, though, were all off-site for training. School starts here next Monday and back-to-school night will be on Thursday. I will show up, smile and mingle, but my real work won’t begin until after Labor Day. By then the teachers will have a routine set up for the children and they will know the rules and expectations. I can fit smoothly into their schedule.

I am grateful that I don’t have to return to a full time job at school with demanding responsibilities. I enjoy setting my own pace.  I love being able to go to lunch with friends. I’m thankful to be available to help with church activities. And into all that I can fit the two days a week for school chaplain duties.


10 responses to “Not the typical back-to-school pace

  1. you are keeping busy as ever Delaine! Hard to believe it’s back to school time. Here, the kids go back after our Labour Day usually around Sep 6. I could be wrong as my kids are done with school.

    • The early start date has much to do with finishing the fall semester by Christmas break. The schools take a week for Thanksgiving and 3 weeks for Christmas so that contributes to that early start date.

  2. So glad you are making your special contributions while going at your own pace

  3. I am amazed that school is starting now, since it was always after Labor Day when I was in school. But I understand if they have three weeks at Christmas. They are so fortunate to have you! 🙂

  4. You are one of the people who keep the world spinning!

  5. Yes, three whole months here too. 🙂
    Balance. You have found balance in your retirement.

    • I am dropping one of my activities–Good News Club–which I’ve done for 3 years. I found that the scripted curriculum did not work well with the way I like to do things and it was leaving me more anxious than satisfied.

  6. Happiness is indeed setting your own schedule.

    The older woman who died was amazing. Divorce was tough in 1954, at least in the Bible belt. That she built such a great life for herself is a tribute to her.

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