I once told someone that my life is a community effort. And it is. Truthfully, I believe everyone's life is.
So, today, with Thanksgiving still waving in our rear-view mirror and Christmas Spirit opening its front door, I would like to say thanks to a couple of friends who have helped me out this year...
I get by with a little help from... Taylor. You may remember I had some issues with rain this spring... well, I arranged to have gutters put on my roof for a mere fifteen hundred odd dollars, but a friend in my Sunday School class at church got to thinking and said he had a better, cheaper idea.
For a month or so he'd show up on Saturdays or maybe Fridays and dig alongside my house. And after several full days of digging in the hard Texas dirt, I had a swale. A swale is a long ditch sloped away from the house that runs alongside the house and all the way out to the street. When rain falls off the side of the house, of course, it slip 'n slides its way on down the street... and not into my reading room.
Taylor saved me thousands of dollars and donated his time and architecture expertise to alter my landscape and help out a friend...
I also get by with a little help from... Paul. Now, this story may need to be confidential, because it involves the IRS. You see, I hadn't done my taxes since 2007. Truthfully, the IRS was probably happy I hadn't yet filed, because they owed me money. But taxes overwhelm me, and I never know what numbers go where, so I just hadn't gotten around to doing them... in a couple years. I'd paid the $1 for an extension, every year, just not gotten them done. But when my friend Paul heard about this one lazy afternoon in the park, he said, "Ann, I read the tax laws for fun. Every year. I can help you do your taxes." And sure enough, two late evenings and a carton of ice cream later, my 2008 and 2009 taxes were finished. And I had enough money to put (fake) hardwood floors in my house! No more dingy carpet! Hooray! My allergist and I were thrilled.
I also get by with a little help from... The Lawyer. He has a real name, I promise. And like Taylor, he attends my church. But he and his wife like to remain mostly anonymous on the internet, and since she calls him The Lawyer in her blog (she's the Librarian), so will I. A couple of years ago, I got el screwed-o by a certain groovy car repair shop in Austin. Ahem. Thousands of dollars and three letters later, I'd heard nothing from them about making ammends for the problems they caused... The Lawyer got on the phone and called the shop's lawyer, and long story short, this year I was able to recoup a small of amount of the money I lost thanks to The Lawyer's mad lawyering skills. (and he is seriously legit... his office building is awesome! - fountains and books and everything - because everyone knows the mark of a good lawyer is whether there's a fountain in his office building).
So I wanted to say thanks. Thanks to these three men who could do what I couldn't, and chose to help a friend And thanks to so many of my friends who help make my life happen... to Chris and Michelle who feed me, to my Mom who worries for me, to my Grandparents who send me money when things are tight, to Nicolette and James and the others who share their music when I need an accompanist, to my roommie, Amanda, who voluntarily helps with the housework, to Bethany who hired me, to Justin who encourages me... the list goes on and on.
My life is a community effort. And I'm thankful for my community.