We woke up to a power outage this morning. “Mom, I have an assignment due today in Comparative Civilizations… I need the internet!” After 12 years of homeschooling, my daughter, Carlee has decided to take a couple of courses in the public high school this year. We are having a part homeschool, part public school semester. Due to the teacher’s strike, it is only the third day of school. She does not have to be at the school until noon so she was counting on this time in the morning to finish her assignment.
My bigger dilemma was that I did not have any way of making my coffee! For those that know me, this is NOT a good situation. In desperation, I tried to make an instant coffee with tap water—the luke warm tap water that was left over in the tank since the power had gone out. Deciding to overlook our inconveniences and count our blessings, I gathered everyone to the couch for our morning inspirational devotion reading and a prayer. We decided to be thankful for all the good things in the day.
My younger son, Jonah, was also taking his first course in the public school and his course is first thing in the morning. We were waiting, wondering if the school bus was going to come (and if school was even open)? Now living in Northern British Columbia, we are not unaccustomed to power outages in even -20 to -40 degree weather. Today it was a balmy 3 degrees. It just felt cold, as still being September, and we were not yet acclimatized. We lit some candles, trying to make it as cozy as possible. The prayer time was good with the kids and Jonah got on the bus. Carlee and her friend Kieran went down to the basement to start a fire and do their school work down in their pajamas in the warmth.
A thoughtful friend texted me, asking if I needed anything. “Hot coffee!” I texted back half-joking, but perhaps unconsciously hoping for a solution. She offered to fire up her barbecue and bring me a thermos of boiled water. A true friend. There was a trick to starting our barbecue as the starter is broken. That was the boy’s department. I kind of know how to do it but kind of was not sure. So I offered to come and pick up my thermos of boiled water at her place.
My friend lived right across from the school. Jonah called me soon after I went there and said that there was a Facebook post this morning saying it was an “optional” day at school and that he was just playing poker in his math class (an educational math game). Well first of all, who looks at their Facebook at 8:00 in the morning? (many apparently) AND secondly, how could we check Facebook without wi-fi (I guess this is where a data plan on a phone comes in handy—something we do not have). I told him to walk over to my friend’s house and I would drive him home. It was actually good, as he was able to help her bring in a bunch of wood to dry out for her fire.
Arriving back home with hot coffee and two thermoses of hot water, we sat down to do some old-fashioned text-book type school. But after about five minutes Jonah announced that he was making pancakes on the barbecue. While I type this, I have three wonderful teens preparing some gourmet pancakes (I requested mine with cheese in the middle which they all think is a bit weird…theirs will be loaded with blueberries and chocolate chips and doused in maple syrup). I feel very grateful at the moment for the small blessings in life. I have decided that seeing the cup half full definitely makes for a better day despite the circumstances!