Why would I "tsk-tsk" a 3 year old making cupcakes? Why would I get grumpy at a mess? That's my issue; lucky for me, Owen helped keep me in check. Here's us processing it all over chocolate.
Can you tell we've been working with Owen on calming himself down? He tends to get stressed out about really little things (yes, I know where he gets that from), but today, he turned the tables on me.
The neighbors he's referring to are the kiddos next door (for whom we were making the cupcakes). We've met a lot of our neighbors, and I'm thankful that we're making relationships with several of them. Michael and I have lived in intentional or in like-minded communities for so long (Harding married housing: 1 year, Fuller seminary housing: 5 years and with my folks: 6 months) that sometimes we wonder if we will ever not share a wall with someone. :) Even Owen realizes this because when he bumps his bedroom wall, he shouts, "Sorry Eleanor!"
Here in Fresno, we've found such joy in serving our neighbors and such blessing in the encouragement they in turn provide to us that I continue to praise God for our new place. Concerns on our minds and hearts: a neighbor recently diagnosed with diabetes and her fiance dumping her because "that's not what he signed up for", a neighbor returning to work on Monday after being ill for over a month, a neighbor losing his business, an elderly neighbor missing her children, and several fathers who are doing their best to have relationships with their elementary aged children despite seeing them only on the weekends.
And as for our neighbors, they share space with us: a mom who is exhausted and lonely, a dad adapting to a new job and fighting his insecurities therein, and a boy who is learning about life and love amidst it all.
And all any of us can do is "take a breath".