Trip prep

I am here in Michigan! Yahoo!  I have already had several hours with one of my grandsons, hanging out on the floor, taking him for a walk, playing peak-a-boo and other games, and generally just doing whatever he wants to do.

I am having a blast!  I have to admit that I am not a fan of the overnight (red eye) plane trip it took for me to get here.  I am a bit groggy and a bit unsure of which end is up. Looking forward to an early bedtime.

But, I am on vacation.  Here’s the thing I noticed about going on a trip or taking time off.  It is kind of annoying but I realized again  how much work it takes just to be able to go out of town.

I spent Saturday and Sunday afternoons making sure everything would be OK while I was gone. You know what I mean? My first priority was doing as much of my pastoral stuff ahead of time so I wouldn’t have to do it while on vacation.  I want to maximize time with our family.

It takes so much time and effort to be able to “leave it at the office” especially when you are taking an extended time away. I am hopeful however that I won’t have to spend time with emails, phone calls, and other communications.  The downside is that all that stuff will be waiting for me when I get home… Yuck!

Other preparation involved readying our home for when we were gone.  I had to do such things as putting a hold on our mail, getting a neighbor to water the trees/vegetation in our backyard, locking up, setting the thermostat for our “not here” temperature, buying items for the trip itself, checking into the flight, and of course packing.

I even had to ask a friend to “babysit” my wife’s geranium.  It normally sits in a large pot on our front porch in indirect sunlight and apparently needs a daily watering. What a pain! I thought, “why not let it die and start over.”

But, apparently, my wife has a fondness in her heart for this plant. And since I have a fondness for my wife (as well as a deep desire to not “blow it”), I determined to take care of her “baby.” So, I was obligated to ask our dear friends if they could watch over our little guy while we were out of town.  Live geranium, live!

It appears to me that there is a whole lot of preparations that go into going on a journey. Sometimes, I want to take shortcuts and avoid the “things to do” checklist. But, it is necessary if I can cut loose and just experience the adventure.

That isn’t just true for vacations but for all of life. For us to really “live it” we have to get ready. We have to prepare or we won’t have what we need for the journey.

We have to “check off stuff” so we can leave it behind and not worry about it.  We have to deal with all that stuff that clutters our lives so we can really focus on the people we will encounter each and every day.

Prep work is never fun, but it is so important!  As they say before a race: Get ready, get set… and finally… GO!

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