The job alluded to in my last blog post did not, in fact, pan out for Warren, but last night he got the good news that he has been hired as a clerk at the nearby UDF. (For non-local readers that stands for United Dairy Farmers and is a combination gas station/convenience store/ice cream parlor.) This job has two big advantages, we believe. One, it does not involve cooking or kitchen work; and two, it is a comfortably short walk from our house, so it does not involve coordinating the entire family's schedule just to get him there and back each day. Please join me in praying that it turns out to be a job that will work out for him for a nice long time. I feel strongly that he really needs to experience the stability of staying in the same job for a year or more, and begin to layer additional new experiences, like college classes, on top of that base. My belief that Warren will go on to build a successful, productive, satisfying life has not wavered, nor has my commitment to help him realize the many wonderful positive character traits I see inherent in him. But the five months he has lived here have involved a lot of false starts and struggles and “two-steps-forward, one-step-back,” and for his sake I ache to see him experience a period of unambiguous forward progress.
Sam, having completed his Eagle project and submitted all his college applications, is in a bit of a lull these days. He has nothing but school work to focus on, which is sometimes a bit of a hazard for him. But so far he seems to be keeping his grades where they need to be. I anticipate that after the first of the year he will have some acceptances, and will then have to focus on choosing which college will be The One. I keep reminding him that while money isn't the only factor, it is a factor in that decision process. And mostly, I keep praying ardently that God will give us clear guidance on which is the right choice. I don't so much care which school he chooses, just that we have a strong, clear sense of which one is right - preferably, that he, Bob and I all get that same sense about the same school.
Today we started doing some Christmas decorating. It will probably be another week before we are done, but it is nice to have some lights up and a few things to make us feel like the holidays are upon us. I have done some Christmas shopping – which is pretty early for me – and I have scheduled a vacation day for this Tuesday to try to knock out as much of it as I can while the stores are not jam-packed with people. Then we have some Christmas parties to attend, two Masses to sing at on Christmas Eve, and celebrations with both the Emerson and Beasley families to look forward to. The Christmas season usually moves even faster than the rest of the year, and I hope to do everything in my power to savor it as it glides by.
So really, I'm just full of anticipation: of sharing in Warren's new job experiences, of sharing a wonderful Christmas season with loved ones, of seeing where Sam ends up choosing to go to school, and of the many unforeseeable changes, challenges and thrills that make our life so much fun. Never a dull moment!