It's been a ridiculously long amount of time since I last did a Ten Things of Thankful (TToT) post. Since I treat Calculated Chaos like my online diary, broadcasting all kinds of nastiness to the world, TToT, in my opinion, is a much-needed reprieve from all the negative crap that I need to vent about. It gives me a chance to focus on the good — or even just find the good, at times; I am always grateful for that. (Thankful #1) The handsome husband refers to it as my “My husband is so sexy & handsome & awesome” posts (or something to that effect) because he is one of the “things” I am grateful for the most often. Haha. 😉
Since my last TToT post was just after the new year (nearly two months ago), there's much to pick & choose from to be grateful about. . . A new semester of school started. (Thankful #2) The downtime was okay, but I find that school is extremely beneficial for my state of mind. Plus, after a very successful fall semester (& my first back to college), I am super excited for this one. I am confident I can maintain my 4.0 GPA — or at least come close to it — which feels so totally fabulous, especially after going to back to school after so long. As a result, I have been able to join my school's chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (an international community college honor society) and my school's honors program, fulfilling two more of my 101 in 1001 items, which feels pretty darn fabulous too. (Thankful #3)
Still on the subject of school, I am really surprised that I am enjoying my math classes so much. (Insert all of the geek jokes you want. It's okay, really. I am a proud nerd. I don't mind at all.) (Thankful #4) In fact, I am enjoying them so much, I am considering changing my major from business (finance) to mathematics (specifically, actuarial science). I still need to research it plenty more, but it is still exciting to be able to look at other options while it is still early in my educational “game plan,” ya know? I am sincerely grateful that I get to have the opportunity to pursue my college education — & that I am fortunate enough to have a (handsome) husband that is not only willing, but also insistent that I put my education first when considering employment & other activities that could be a distraction. (Thankful #5) It does not miss me that a lot of 30-somethings that even get to go back to school do not get the added blessing of being able to be a full-time student with minimal other responsibilities.
Also back in January, the 16-year anniversary of my mother's death passed by, then at the beginning of this month, what would have been my mother's 57th birthday also passed. In between that, just a few days before my mother's birthday, was my oldest son's 13th birthday. He's a teenager now! Oh my Lord! While, not all of this is necessarily related to someone on the outside looking in, for me, all three of these dates are difficult for me. Obviously, in the case of my mother, it is because she is no longer with us; in the case of my son, it is because I don't get to see him the way a mother & son usually get to. It is hard
sometimes a lot of the time pretty much all the time.
With all of that said, my youngest son's dad contacted me right after my oldest son's birthday & basically said that he knew it was a rough time of the year for me & that my Little RJ hadn't seen me in a while & why don't I go ahead & get a trip for him scheduled to come down for a visit — his treat (the handsome husband & I are usually responsible for Little RJ's transportation costs). (Thankful #6) Of course, the gesture made me cry; that's just how I am. But, he was so right. That is exactly what I needed at that moment: a visit with my son to look forward to & a reminder that things certainly aren't all bad. I am definitely grateful that my youngest son's dad is such a good dad — & that, even though he doesn't have to, he is also my friend & considers my needs in regard to our son too. (Thankful #7) It's a rare thing these days, I think, to have parents that are not a couple still get along for the sake of their child — & actually be able to be friends too. I am proud that we seem to have gotten that part right.
The trip for Little RJ that we planned at the beginning of this month is in one week! Next Saturday evening, he arrives & I am so SUPER excited to see him!! (Thankful #8) He will be here for about 10 days &, although the handsome husband will still need to work & I will still need to go to my classes (which only meet twice a week for a few hours in the evening, since most of them are online this semester), we are still going to try to make this visit fun-filled. We've been careful not to be running around trying to entertain him every second of every day when he comes down to see us because we don't want him to expect it, ya know? We want him to come just to be with us & spend time with us, regardless of what we are doing. The thing about that is that we're not a super active family. My days are largely spent on my couch on my computer, writing, doing homework, & interacting with my long-distance friends via Facebook. Little RJ is a video gamer, so he gets in plenty of that. But, it leaves him with little to say when someone asks him what he did in Arizona on his visit with his mom & step-dad. LOL. So, we figured that this visit, we would give him a couple of things to refer back to that he (hopefully) will be able to consider fun. (He is at that age when it is hard to predict what he'll roll his eyes at or what he'll actually think is kinda cool, but we're giving it an effort, so hopefully he is a grateful kid — that's all I've gotta say about that! Ugh.)
One of the things we are considering doing with Little RJ during his visit is taking the three- to four-hour drive to Tombstone & possibly spending a night in the Tucson area & finding a few fun things to do there. We're not sold on that particular excursion, but it has been a topic of contemplation. It is a blessing that we can even consider this mini road trip. (Thankful #9) We sold our economical vehicle before moving from Washington State to Arizona last year because it did not have air-conditioning. Our truck's air conditioner went out shortly after we got here & it is not running very well at all. It is definitely on its last leg. About a month ago, we purchased a new-to-us vehicle that, coincidentally, is the same make & model of the car we sold before our move. It is a year older, but it has functioning air-conditioning & it is in slightly better shape (with tinted windows for all the sun here). I am so stoked! It's nothing fancy, but it is peace of mind. Next step is replacing the truck with something economical for the handsome husband since the new (to us) car is designated as mine, for the most part.
Speaking of our move from Washington State last year, Thursday will mark one year since we've been in our current house! Tomorrow night will mark a year since we left Washington in our loaded moving truck, hauling our old truck on a dolly behind it. We left at midnight & drove mostly through nights & stopped twice along the way to grab a motel room for a bed & a shower. It was a rushed road-trip since we didn't have a house to move into when we got here, but it all worked out. We arrived in our current area just two days before we were able to move into our house. God smiled on us, for sure! Things certainly have a way of working out. (Thankful #10) Now, while I miss Washington State terribly — & the people who live there that I love — & while I was so totally miserable in Arizona for at least the first six months or so that we were here (it was Hell. I kid you not.), it's really not so bad. I am still super shocked that this year has gone by so incredibly fast. (Hopefully this next year doesn't kill me either! LOL)
I don't know what comes next, but life is pretty darn good from my perspective. . . I just need a reminder every now & then, I guess. 😉
If you're curious about what others are thankful for this week, click here.