Sr. Christina M. Neumann, OSF
I just got back early this morning from a week’s home visit. It was a very nice time with my parents during which I also got to visit with some other family and friends.
The trip wouldn’t be complete without some Scrabble-playing with my dad, who has the tendency of beating me (about 68% of the time).
During this visit, however, I actually had the “upper hand.”
During our games of Scrabble, the importance of “stir[ring] up the tiles” is stressed. We try to thoroughly mix the letters before drawing to see who goes first and finally proceeding to draw our remaining letter tiles.
Another recent “mix up” was more of an interior one. Whether this is normal or not, I’m not sure, but, for me, a week of visiting old friends/family into normal life can leave me feeling a bit befuddled. (It’s really weird to see a cousin you last saw when he was a high school freshman now in his late twenties, with darker hair and a beard!)
Taking a night train doesn’t contribute in a positive way to alleviating this dishevelment, either! Thankfully, I was able to sleep pretty well, only waking up occasionally.
I got back to Grand Forks and tried to take a little nap. My alarm went off, and I hit the ground running. I had a lot of work to get done before taking over at the front desk at noon!
After getting my prayers and work finished in Chapel, assisting at Mass, and filling in a little at the reception desk, I headed out to our garden, where further mix ups would occur.
I like to put in a little garden with our residents on our west patio. While I was home visiting, we picked up seeds for beets, peas, cucumbers, peppers, and dill.
I used plastic stakes that had been saved from floral arrangements and neatly marked off divisions for planting the different vegetables. When all was planted, it was time for “pest control.”
Unfortunately, being well-fed by our residents who go out to smoke, the St. Anne’s Squirrels are very tame and uninhibited.
Last year, the messed around with my neatly planted seeds, wreaking havoc until I fenced the raised garden off with chicken wire. This, however, made tending to the garden very difficult.
This year, I decided to lay the chicken wire on top of the beds, just until the seeds are up. and less in danger of interference from squirrels. Now, let the little squirrels try to mix up our seeds!
Unfortunately my work with chicken wire required a bit of rearranging, as the stakes that were in place were an obstacle to the protective material.
Despite my attempts at supervision and reminders, there was a “mix up”; the stakes got rearranged and my neat, purposeful grid was unintentionally eliminated.
Other complications, including trying to figure out a watering system, dealing with a mysteriously sore hip, and less than cooperative chicken wire made the experience a little less than pleasurable for me.
In the end, the hose was used, and returned to its place, the chicken wire was cut to fit in place, and the hip got a little ice (more to come later).
I wonder what other “mix ups” I’ll be dealing with as I get back into the groove of work at St. Anne’s.
It’s good for me to remind myself, amidst the mix ups, to keep my eyes on Jesus. No matter how disheveled this world can be, He’s got it all together and sees through it.