It's Been A While...

Meme submitted by Bob Kane
I haven't blogged much this year.  That is mainly due to the fact that we have a pretty busy schedule.  Mr. C works two jobs and six days a week.  I work full time as well.  In our spare time, we try to spend time with our Little Mister and carve out some time for our extended family also.  We managed to fit in some great vacations this year, including the Little Mister's first trip to Disney World and a family trip to Washington, DC.  Life is short, and these moments are fleeting.  We have chosen to spend our time making memories.

Aside from our busy lifestyle, 2016 has been...rough, to say the least.  We've lost several family members this year.  Mr. C was laid off from one of his jobs, but has luckily just found and started a new one.  But, we are Louisiana residents and, unless you've been living under a rock, you know it's been a crazy 2016 in Louisiana.  It all began with the shooting of Alton Sterling.  Our city has always had an underlying element of racial tension.  For decades, it has been present in our neighborhoods, schools, and places of worship.  It's usually hidden behind all that southern hospitality we put on display.  But, the tension exploded after the shooting, the city became even further divided, and protests ensued.

Before our city could recover, three law enforcement officers, Matthew Gerald, Montrell Jackson and Brad Garafola, who had no relation or affiliation to the Sterling shooting were murdered.  Another deputy, Nicholas Tullier, who was critically injured in the shooting, is still fighting for his life. The shooter, who I refuse to name here, took it upon himself to create his own version of justice...which was not justice at all.  The common thread in all of these shootings is that ALL of those men were fathers.  As a result of the actions of a few, several children in our community are being forced to grow up without their fathers.

As if July wasn't enough to bear, in August it rained about 6.9 trillion gallons of water in a matter of a week's time.  This caused all of the rivers and tributaries, in the area, to swell.  With nowhere for the water to go, the flooding began.  Over 60,000 homes in the South Louisiana area were damaged.  Our home was not flooded, our neighborhood only received water in the street at the back.  (If you follow my personal Instagram page, you saw how close the water was from the aerial view I posted.)  Many of the areas around us, including the neighborhood that backs up to our subdivision, were flooded.  If your home was not flooded in Baton Rouge and the surrounding areas, you know people who were flooded from their homes.  At work, twenty percent of our employees were directly affected by the flooding.  And, it is important to note that it flooded in our area back in March of 2016, so for some, their homes have flooded twice in one year.

At this point, we are trying to carry on with life.  We are trying to help our family and friends put their homes back together and offer support to them in their process.  My ability to assist in physically rebuilding has been hindered by my inability to remain healthy.  I have what is being dubbed the "flood flu".  It is an upper respiratory infection that results from mold exposure.  I've taken multiple rounds of steroids and continue to take Zyrtec daily, but I've had to distance myself from the mold.  This condition has become quite common in our area.

Now, I am trying to return a sense of normalcy to our lives.  One thing I am trying to do in response to all that has happened, is to be kinder than necessary.  We've been praying for our community, our state and our nation.  But, one of my goals is to not let the hurt, sadness and bitterness I feel over the events of this year settle in my soul.  It's not an easy feat, but it is important.  Kindness is not a sign of weakness, it's a sign of maturity.

As for the blog, I have a number of projects completed, that I have not yet blogged about.  I've received several requests for updates on the Ashley living room furniture we purchased last year.  I will get those up soon.  As far as consistency goes, I don't know how often I will be posting, but I will try to maintain some sort of regular schedule.  Thank you for being patient with me.

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