Dun-duh-dun, DONE.


I am grateful for 6 more college credits added to my transcript, and I am patting myself on the back for doing it in 23 days. It about done me in.

I am grateful to be grateful once again.

I am grateful to be smarter about marriage and family relationships and death and dying.

I am grateful to have had so many life experiences to write about these last 23 days. It didn’t matter the topic of the assignment – I could pull from my vast dysfunctional life and whip out a 500 word paper every. single. night. x. 2.

I am grateful for a quiet resolve.

I am grateful that even in a storm, He is calm.

I am grateful for friends who send the best cards – thank you this week to Joyce, Geri, and Karen.

I am grateful for a new creature to help with my stress. His name is Tate, or Tater, but because of his shape, Sam refers to him as Potato. We are fostering for our nephew so he doesn’t have to live on the street. The nephew, not Potato. Potato lives wherever Potato wants. Just not in bed or on tables or on counters. He will be known as Mashed Tater if he keeps it up.

I am grateful for a reprieve from the heat.

I am grateful for friends that I can text when we need some prayer – thank you, Linda, Geri, Connie, and Chris.

I am grateful when friends send me articles and memes that fit – thank you Julie and Elaine.

I am grateful that tonight, I do not have to write papers or read chapters or take tests or take part in online discussions or talk about perspective theories or my thoughts on death.

Finally, I am grateful for tomorrow, even though it is a mountain Sam really doesn’t want to climb. We have so much for which to be grateful, and even though we THOUGHT the answer was in Washington, God says the answer is in Hays and in Rochester at this time and in this stage. So I am grateful that Sam is able to continue working, grateful that he can be home every night, grateful that these bi-weekly trips are only 90 miles and not 280 miles, grateful for a new weapon to fight this disease, grateful for not one but TWO oncologists who see his chart on a continual basis, grateful that God see the big picture and knows our prayers when we cannot get the words out because of the overwhelm.

Finally, a wall of progress.


I am grateful for progress in 110 degree heat index.

I am also very grateful that I had nothing to do with the progress. It was all Sam and Brell muscle and know-how, with Kelly’s dirt moving and rock delivery.


Each block was 65 pounds. Sam and I unloaded every one of those from the back of a strained pickup bed, and they could go no farther than that pile in the driveway. I thought I broke a bone in my foot. Sam had absolutely no business doing ANY of this work. We were a sweaty mess.

They sat there for many days until Brell and Kelly came to the rescue at Sam’s insistence. In the 110 degree heat index.


As you can see, our wall is only partially done. Which means we must go get another load of 65 pound blocks.

Also, as you can see, our wall will not keep anyone out. We like our walls that way. We welcome you all. We are progress-ive.

Not so much progress.

I am grateful, at least this time, that I have not made a lot of progress as a house cleaner.

Natia died on November 30, 2018. I found one of her treats on June 29, 2019. I am not quite ready to toss it in the trash, so it has become one of my miniatures sitting on the windowsill.

Finally, I am grateful for personal progress. I began two college classes last night. So far, I am a straight A student. I would like to remain a straight A student, so I have put my phone on silent to text messages and distractions, and I am taking my time for the month of July to study and write papers and take quizzes and tests.

And when I need a break, I will either 1) respond to text messages and emails and voicemails, 2) look at my miniatures and cry, or 3) take a quiet sunset drive with Sam.