Monday, April 09, 2007

Holiday Plans...

My Easter plans didn't go exactly as I had pictured them. "In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." Proverbs 16:9

In thinking through my week, I had decided to set the table, iron napkins, and cook some of my Sunday dinner (that's noonday dinner) ahead of time.

I had also picked up picnic preparations. Our church had planned a picnic and Easter Egg hunt months before anyone knew that Easter weekend would bring with it an unusually cold blackberry winter. It even spit snow on Saturday! Flurries in April are unheard of in our Southern town. It was so cold on Saturday that I found myself humming Christmas carols! Wrong holiday. :)

Our son, who lives in another city, hoped he would be able to join us for the weekend.

As it turned out, my dear widowed father got sick Friday evening. On Saturday, our own doctor was out of pocket. We exhausted a couple of possibilties before ending up taking him to the ER. We were at the ER all day long, and it was late evening before we finally got home. The good news is that my father came to our house to recuperate from his illness, which means that we are enjoying some great time with him.

Our son had a work emergency, and he wasn't able to travel home after all. He was a little down about the way his week was going.

Despite the unforseen events, we had a lovely dinner with my father, my dear hubby, my married daughter, and her husband. And, we were able to have an encouraging conversation with our son. My husband talked with him today, and his week is going much better so far.

In the process of managing a holiday dinner in the midst of it all, I learned several things:

1) You have to "roll with it, baby". It's vital to our success as keepers of our homes to plan and work ahead as much as possible. At the same time, we have to commit our way to the Lord and let him direct our steps. If He chooses something different than we had in mind, we can trust that His ways are best. Besides, the real importance of a family time together is the memories you build. Every detail doesn't have to go perfectly as you mapped out in order for the family to have a great time.

2) It's handy to have an easy craft in a bag that you can quickly grab. I'm in the middle of a stretch of unexpected doctor's appointments -- both for myself and for my father. While I'm an avid reader, I find it hard to concentrate on a book when I'm waiting for myself or someone else to have a medical test. It's also hard to talk to another person and comfort them, if you are reading. So, I find that it's more soothing to have something easy to do with my hands. I'm in the process of fringing napkins, which I will stitch up. That's been my easy craft of late. I also have a printed cross-stitch to tackle once the napkins are done.

3) Planning ahead has its benefits, even if the plans don't proceed as you thought they would. We didn't use the picnic items I had gathered for Saturday on Saturday. But, they came in handy for a quick supper last night and for lunch today.

Also, I had mentally set out a course of action for the Sunday dinner in which I would iron napkins and prepare several dishes ahead on Saturday. I had purposely chosen simple things -- like an easy to cook ham -- so that I could put the dinner on the table soon after we got home from church. As it turned out, I had no time on Saturday to do anything other than attend to the emergency at hand. But, I had gathered the basic materials for the meals, and I had prepared a little centerpiece. So, while I was tending to my father Sunday morning, I was able to also put the Sunday meal together. The only things I didn't get done were ironing the napkins the way I wanted them and getting out my spring wreath for the door. But, those details didn't take away anything from the good meal and the fun we had.



Julieann said...

Awww, Elizabeth--I am sorry things didn't go as planned, but I just love your positive attitude about it all:) Next year we will have ironed napkins!!!


Elizabeth said...

Maybe, I should start now. :)