10 Things I Learned in November

goodbye november

1. Birthdays are wonderful.  Although I’m not crazy about getting older, I am crazy about being alive and fairly healthy and mostly sane.  Every day is precious, but birthdays are worth celebrating.

2. I wouldn’t have made it to Oregon in 1846.  In fact, I never would have left my log cabin with two cows on six acres in the heartland. I read “The Indifferent Stars Above” out loud to PB this month — the story of the Donner Party and their debacle in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  Nightmares ensued.

3. Craig’s List works. I sold something for the first time on the free ad site. There were bidding wars in my inbox right off the bat. Some lovely people came to our house, picked up the goods and handed me cash.  I might be hooked.

4. Prayer is a deep topic.  Our women’s Bible study has been learning about prayer for 12 weeks now and I feel like we’ve barely scratched the surface.

5. Sometimes old, familiar words take on a whole new meaning.  Take, for instance, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life…” The word “follow” suddenly became significant. I guess I can’t sit around and wait for goodness and mercy to show up.  Instead, I set out and start moving ahead and when I turn around to look over my shoulder, there they will be.  Goodness and mercy can’t follow me if I’m not going anywhere.  After all this time, that little bit of truth has been waiting for me to unearth it.

6. I read through Ecclesiastes this month and found myself irritated with Solomon’s pessimism.  After each chapter, I wrote Solomon a letter outlining all the problems I had with his view that “everything is pointless, perfectly pointless.” “Dear Solomon, The best you can offer is ‘eat, drink, and be merry’?  That smacks of a very shallow life.  I’m all for good food and good times, but Sol, there’s more to life than prime rib and parties.”

7. I’m taking a friend’s advice to enjoy winter this year.  Typically, I’m a happy hibernator from January through March. But after hearing my friend talk about her decision to approach winter with a positive attitude, I signed up. The key for her is bundling up and going outside, despite the cold and snow.  I’m asking for battery powered socks for Christmas.

8. Old football injuries never go away.  PB gave his knee to Brillion High back in the 70’s. Soon he will be getting a new one. With six grands, he has to be able to give horsey rides without his knee going out of joint.

9. In January, I’m going to transition from working full-time to working part-time.  I’m trying to figure out what that means.

10. Being thankful and saying “thank you” to someone are two different things.  Listening to the celebrities interviewed during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, I was struck by how genuinely grateful they all sounded.  Not many knew whom to thank, however.  It’s like being thankful for the turkey on the table without saying “thank you” to the one who made it.  Knowing Whom to thank makes all the difference.

What did you learn in November?

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