We Christmas’d in Memphis this year. The kids had a great time together. (I have no pics b/c I forgot our camera!) And getting to spend time with Kate and Jon, my mom and dad, was marvelous. I always feel so connected, so in tune with Jon and my dad. Our conversations feel meaningful, deep.
However, in retrospect now, picking out Tamara’s Christmas (and to some degree the anticipation of a new job – see next paragraph) was horribly stressful. Of course, like a normal guy, I hate shopping. But I did most of it online, so then that should help. And it did. But the problem became: I couldn’t buy it before Dec 25th and in fact had to wait until Monday, 2 days beyond our anticipated departure. So what required such anxiety, and still be “worth it”? Well… a car. As the mileage on our ’97 Ford E150 breached the 200K mark, we felt compelled to replace it. I researched replacements in Austin, but not until talking with our Volvo experts (while in Memphis) that the search narrowed to specifics. And we found an 05 Volvo XC90 in Memphis. So, we’re cruisin in style once again… until we’re not again.
We also sold the van. First, Tamara saved me by finding the Title! Also, it sold for double what Car Max said they pay for it. And then, it went to a nice young couple that really needed it. 3 young children to get back and forth to school. It felt familiar.
With terms complete and papers all signed, the cusp of a new job on Monday morning illuminates the coming years, if God wills it. There are 2 major differences this time. 1) I’ll be working with my brother. In fact, we’ll likely be office-d down the hall for each other. But for those that don’t know us well, this will bless us both and even could make us happier people. Todd and I worked throughout our childhood together without noticeable conflict. And we worked together during an entire summer for our uncle’s foundation repair company: 10 hour days digging holes and hauling stuff around. We got along better than we ever had that summer. 2) Here at the outset, the work appears to be very interesting. I’m really looking forward to starting.