Sunday, September 22, 2013
It's been a fun and happy weekend. I so rarely have weekend plans that this weekend was a special bonus, with things to do from Thursday on -- I even had to turn down an invitation for lunch because I had too much to do. What a happy dilemma! I attended my first Search and Rescue membership meeting this week and learned a little about emergency first aid in the field. The big training sessions are still ahead of me and I am both excited and anxious.
Friday was the friend's surprise 40th birthday party, and that was a lot of fun. Our piper friend played happy birthday on the bagpipes and the 'birthday boy' danced a jig. The weather was perfect but just cool enough to justify a fire, and so it was the best of all worlds: interesting people, great food, and a fire.
The next day was a local chili and salsa cook off and I wandered with a group of friends through town, tasting dozens of different versions of each. Those little tiny cups added up and made a satisfying lunch, although none held more than a teaspoon!
The rest of the day was spent in jelly making. We picked grapes, made juice, boiled and jarred and sealed about 40 jars of grape jelly. I went back and forth between the chilly outdoors and the steamy kitchen so I was never bored. The process took all day but in the end we were satisfied and proud of ourselves for sure. But this morning, it looks like none of the jars set into jelly! I am so frustrated and not at all sure where we went wrong. :( We did all the gel tests we could think of and it sure looked like we were on target, but today all I have to show for a dozen hours of work (and a lot of clean up) is a counter-top covered with jars of grape syrup.
It looks like today will be another beautiful day. This morning I played a board game that my granddaughter invented. The kids are always creating things and it is always fun.
This afternoon I have a two hour drive to the site of a 2 1/2 day conference. But before I leave, the Grands have placed a hopeful order for Grandma Cookies. And although their parents told them they could wait until I get back, I just happen to have some cookie dough in the freezer and will bake that up before I leave. It is so nice to be wanted, and very special that they named their favorite cookie after me!
The conference I will be attending is about crisis intervention, and I am hoping to hone my chaplain skills. Part of my role is to provide support for staff who have responded to crisis situations, both at the hospice and in the search and rescue group. It is important to me to be as well trained as possible, so I take advantage of as many training opportunities as I can afford. I won't know anyone at the conference and don't know the area, so it will all be new. I am a shy person by nature, so it is good for me to push my envelope a little. And the conference is being held on the grounds of a nature center of some kind, so I am hoping to take advantage of the hiking trails. I will take my fishing rod, too, just in case!