Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Gratitude: April 2011

Spring is here...woo hoo! We had temps around the 60's on the 1st Monday of the month, which I remember noting on my "thankful" book. After the "long winter", I stated how much I appreciated the weather. I also noted in early part of April that I'm thankful for the "slow" snow melt. Despite our near record snowfall in the state of Minnesota, there were not many reported "serious" floods (see Outdoors: Spring) here or throughout the state.

Well, I got my test results of that blood test I mentioned last month, which turned out "negative" for all three major "stuff". I'm "good for now", but still have to get another one in 3 months (July). I'll keep you posted, but still try to live each day to the "fullest" and not to take each day for granted. I've been reading reports in our state that HIV cases has been on the rise, which is sad to read about. My compassion and notice on this issue has been on my radar more with my recent "blood test".

I went to an annual "steak feed" (ONLY $5!!) in-town, which I'm not really a red-meat eater. I will eat it occasionally, but I enjoy more of the "hanging-out" with a good-friend of mine and seeing people throughout the community (Stevens County) come together for this great occasion. The following day, I was able to "hang-out" with housemate and his family for a 72nd birthday party. Someone reaching that age is a big celebration and a blessing not for the individual, but also the love ones close to them.

What makes the small-town community great is the "fundraisers" that bring people to come together to help one another. My local pastor's wife raised (local high school) "enough" to help cover the high cost medical expenses. A close-friend of mine from my local church helped contributed to this after getting a long-waited timely "blessing" too. It was cool because I was asking the Lord to speak to him on how to spend this lump sum of recent "blessing". The lesson learn from this is instead of telling the person something that you might be "afraid" to tell him/her personally for some reason, just ask God to tell him/her Himself!! God's provision...Hallellujah!

I "try" to visit my immediate family in St. Paul in a monthly basis and appreciate time with them more and more as I get older. I just want to say THANK YOU sis for being a blessing (would make enchiladas for me before my trip to Texas the following week). She went along with me to a Twins game (that got postponed due to rain) the 3rd Friday of April as I got 2 tickets for the price of one (lower deck along the 3rd baseline in the outfield). I thought it would be a good treat for her since she has done a lot for me (e.g. took me to a Prince concert). The following day (Saturday, April 23rd 2011), we celebrated as family for my sister's and mom's be-lated birthday at a "new" Asian-buffet restaurant along the "famous" multi-cultural neighborhood in Minneapolis. That same day, I would take my mom to a local Asian grocery store in St. Paul to do our monthly grocery shopping when I'm "home" from Morris. Well, along the way to the store, I got a "flat". I found this out while I just came out of I-94 exiting Dale Street (north). I then dropped my mom off at the store and went to a nearby gas station to fill the tire with enough air to get me to a nearby "tire" repair shop. I would drive cautiously all over trying to find a place that was open along University Avenue and had no luck. I finally decided (inkling of the Holy Spirit) to drive to Tire Plus, where I bought these tires. Well, after 2 hours waiting, I got "good news" (no diagnosis-they couldn't find anything? Can't you believe it!)! I'm not sure what happened, but I immediately thanked the Lord in front of my mom. I know He he heals, but "automobiles" too? God knows! The last day being in the cities for this weekend was Easter, so I went along with some of my family for Easter (THANK YOU JESUS for what you did on the "Cross") service at the St. Paul Cathedral. It was fun to be with family this weekend!

When I arrived back to Morris, I texted a "friend" to play catch (baseball). We've been talking about this for the past year and we finally got a chance to do this with another beautiful "Spring-Day". The next day (Monday, April 25th 2011), my workplace had our annual "Staff-Board Meeting Supper" (ribs-yummy). I'm just thankful to have a job, but more appreciative that I don't see this a job much as I love what I do!

Probably the most memorable of April was my 4-day weekend (Friday, April 29th-Monday, May 2nd 2011) trip to Texas for a close friend's wedding!