“The Little Condo on the Prairie” (October 2013)

This fall brings football, baking — and a fall update on some of the antics going on at the Thomas household:

Wednesday, Cheryl was upset because the Bakers chocolate bars she buys for making brownies had a new packaging — as well as a new price! They had basically doubled the price with the new setup, and Cheryl was not happy. She vented her frustrations to Paul, and said that she was through with that company; she was going to make her own chocolate square alternative with cocoa powder and shortening. And she said she was going to call and tell Bakers of her feelings.
Paul responded by imitating (in a VERY dramatic voice!) what Cheryl might say: “I’m through with you! YOU … Taco Bueno … Subway … and the Braums on Robinson …” (reciting all the places on Cheryl’s “little list”!)
Me: (adapting Pride & Prejudice) “Her good opinion, once lost, is lost forever!”
After some reflection, I was quite impressed that Paul could have come up with such a list off the top of his head like that. I guess Cheryl must have made her feelings known at some point 😉

Monday night, Michael had a good-sized lead in his fantasy football matchup with Josh, but Josh had two New Orleans Saints wide receivers on his team, and the Saints had a huge game. At one point, Cheryl broke the bad news to Michael that he had been passed up for the lead.
Michael immediately began singing a heartfelt adaptation of Anne Hathaway’s solo in “Les Miserables”: “Now Josh has killed the dream in me ….”

Later Monday night, we let Michael stay up late to watch the news coverage of the impending government shutdown. At one point, Fox News put up on the screen a picture of the four top congressional leaders. Michael quipped: “That looks like a picture of Mt. Rushmore gone wrong!”


One afternoon, Cheryl told me that she needed a piece of chocolate. I knew what to do, because I keep a whole batch of Ghirardelli chocolates in the desk drawer by my chair.
I handed her one, and added, “Do you want me to give you a couple more to stash over there?”
She responded: “I don’t think I’m capable of keeping a stash of chocolate!”

In other news, I received this e-mail from Roger Goodell of the NFL the other day. I didn’t realize I was so important as to be on his mailing list, but I am guessing that my fantasy football team’s success has probably caught his attention (sure I am just 1-3, but some of those losses were really close … 😉


Michael & I went to the gym the other afternoon, and I had just finished working out on one of the machines that is right in front of the big glass window (don’t you just love that?!). I stopped to rest before I went to the next apparatus, and looked out that window for a minute. There was a little “scavenger”-type bird hopping on the sidewalk, and we stared at each other for just a moment. I thought to myself: “That has got to be the ugliest bird I have ever seen.” He had what looked like a close-shaven head, and an ugly, weird looking wing.
Then he turned, and I noticed something that changed my whole attitude: his wing was not “weird”; it was broken. As he hopped around and turned himself, I could see that his other wing was not like that first one. Something must have happened to it. I noticed that other birds would fly in and out from the sidewalk area, but he just remained there, and hopped about, getting what he could. I also spotted a little green bowl by the bush where he seemed to stay. I surmised that someone — more observant and compassionate than I was initially — had put it out for him. But my attitude towards him changed immediately. He was not ugly; he was hurt.
As I looked at him, I also thought to myself: “How many times do we do that with people?” There are many individuals in our world who appear, at first, to act “ugly.” And certainly there are plenty who do a lot of ugly things. But I wonder how many of them are just like that bird. They have been hurt: maybe it was a heartbreak, or a financial collapse, or they have been deserted, or abused or exploited. Sure they may relate or respond to us in an ugly way. But we need to consider that these people may just be like that bird. They did not just decide to be ugly. They have been hurt.

On a lighter note, since it is October now, Cheryl has gotten some of her fall decorations out. She put together a really nice table arrangement for the dining room — but when Paul ate a bowl of Wheaties there, he thought the box matched the decor pretty well. Needless to say, Cheryl was not impressed:


About Shawn Thomas

My blog, shawnethomas.com, provides brief devotions from own personal daily Bible reading, as well as some of my sermons, book reviews, and family life experiences.
This entry was posted in Home & Family Life, This Week In Paradise (pastors family blog). Bookmark the permalink.

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