Keep calm and stay warm
The forecast is calling for sub-zero temperatures again tonight and tomorrow. Our house is perpetually cold. I wander around from room to room dragging our portable space heater with me, bundled up from head-to-toe in sweatpants, a sweatshirt, socks, slippers and a bathrobe. I can never get comfortable.
This chick is NOT built for winter.
And yet, a certain reality has hit me really hard this season: Our community has a sizable homeless population and I am heartbroken for folks who have absolutely nowhere to go, no shelter to protect them from these frigid temperatures. It's dangerous, it's scary and it makes one exceedingly grateful for the roof over her head and the furnace that keeps her warm (maybe not WARM, per say, but a furnace that definitely produces enough heat to keep her alive).
These thoughts have been weighing very heavily on my heart and this year I've felt a strong conviction that I don't do enough for other people. Sure, I've done some volunteer work in the past (some this past Monday to be exact), but 99% of those volunteer hours were mandated from a higher authority and not completely of my own accord. The only community service I've been moved to do on my own was when I volunteered as a dog-walker at the animal shelter while in college and let's be honest, I just wanted to play with dogs.
We're back to normal hour-long lunches at work and today I took the opportunity to go home and eat lunch with Joey while watching a few episodes of last night's DVR'd television. When I pulled onto our street, I noticed a UPS delivery man running frantically to and from his truck, doing his best to shorten the amount of time he had to spend in the freezing air. Despite wearing gloves, when I got back to my office after walking across the campus parking lot, my hands were bright red and tingly from the bitter cold.
I shivered in my office for several moments after hanging up my coat, but then I wrapped my hands around a warm mug of freshly brewed coffee and continued my day, working a good job that allows me to pay for luxuries like gloves and a furnace.
Most people would consider items like gloves and heat necessities—not luxuries—but so many people go without both (and even less in general) and that has a way of putting life's blessings into perspective.
Stay warm and be safe,
(And since I can never take myself or this blog too seriously, I need to mention that when I did an image search for the above cup of coffee, I googled "a warm cup of ..." and Google filled in the rest, thinking I was searching for "You can trouble me for a warm glass of SHUT THE HELL UP.")
Check out the name tag. You're in my world now, Grandma.