I was reading from Joel Osteen tonight—he always inspires me, and something I read struck me as important. “Everything you say matters. Something you say may seem insignificant to you, but to someone else, it may be life changing.” I find that to be so true, both positively and negatively. Particularly with one’s children, but with other people too. Something we may say casually goes right to someone’s heart. I still remember a math tutor I had, who told me at about the age of 12 that I would never amount to anything, and it stuck with me for a long time, and fortunately proved to be untrue. A family member said some really cruel things to me as a child that stayed in my mind for years—almost like a curse, and I had to overcome those words. And in the same vein, we can encourage people, with a few warm, kind words. We need to use our words well, it can make a huge difference to someone, especially if we offer a kind word at what we may not even know is a low point for them.
This time of year is high writing season for me (it’s nice to stay home in the cold weather), and it’s also my ‘homebody’ season, when I stay home on cold rainy days, putter around the house and get things done that I’ve meant to get to for a while. Hang a painting, clean out a closet, tidy up my desk, make calls I’ve been meaning to make. I love having at home time to do that. I’m really enjoying my new home, and am still settling in.
Doing something as complex and complicated as a move to a new home brought me in contact with many suppliers I wasn’t familiar with, and hadn’t used before, but needed to complete the process, IT people, Internet and phone installers, movers, carpet cleaners, painters, curtain installers, someone to install a movie projector, so my kids could watch movies/DVD’s at home. Some of it was pretty simple stuff, and some of it more complicated. As a woman alone, one sometimes appears vulnerable, and the whole process has been a lesson in human nature. Some people simply cannot resist taking advantage, and others do a fantastic job. I’ve had some real battles to face, which has taken patience. In all, two of the suppliers were outstanding, and did way more than expected, and didn’t charge a penny extra for it. Others couldn’t resist the temptation to cross the line, and padded bills, flat out lied, didn’t show up and weren’t reliable, and didn’t do what they promised at all. In each case, I tried to be patient and reasonable, and sometimes had to get tough about a blatantly dishonest bill, or a supplier who had gotten paid, and then didn’t do the job. It’s disappointing when people do that. Maybe they thought I wouldn’t notice, or wouldn’t make a fuss about it. But after several months of it, when I see an irregularity now, or a ‘cheat’ on a bill, I put my foot down, and in one or two cases, it took a lawyer to get things back in line. It will make me much more cautious in future about whom I trust, what I pay for, and expecting people to do the job they promised!! And with so many suppliers and tradesmen involved in a move, there’s a lot of opportunity to wind up with some bad ones in the mix. And some VERY good ones, which I am grateful for!!! Even more grateful than before.
I can’t help noticing too, and commenting on, what a terrible beating California has taken with fires both North and South, floods, mud slides, and even a recent earthquake in Northern California. Many of the stories are truly horrible from the fires, with so many homes lost, and all their personal treasures, or loved ones, lost. And now the victims of the mud slides are equally poignant, with loss of life, and so many homes. My heart goes out to everyone affected, and all the victims. I hope the planet will calm down now!!!
I hope the year is off to a good start for you, whether you are hibernating, or out having fun!!!
Have a great week!!!