Club Megumi

Dearest Rachel – Another early morning, another thing to write you about before I go back to sleep and forget all about it. Don’t know how far I’ll get before that happens, but I might as well try and see where this goes. Anyway, this is about a dream, which have been fewer and fartherContinue reading “Club Megumi”

Spoiled

Dearest Rachel – For all the improvements to the house over the past few months, you would think I would be satisfied with everything, now that the dust has settled. But not necessarily; after getting myself dressed, and heading to the dining room to get myself a bowl of cereal to start the day with,Continue reading “Spoiled”

Cold Open

You know how it goes; you remember how the episodes began when the revival fired up. It’s the top of the hour, and what you’re watching is too good, too professionally produced to be a commercial. The visuals are stunning, and the action has you already hooked on what’s going on. But there’s been noContinue reading “Cold Open”

from Rachel: Awake My Soul, Tune In!

What does 2 Corinthians 5:7 say about your status now that you are in Christ? “I am a new creation.” Scripture says that accessories come with your “newness.” What are they? On the following thought closet bins write a truthful statement you can say to your soul to reinforce what God has given you. “ItContinue reading “from Rachel: Awake My Soul, Tune In!”

As Done As We Can Be, For Now

Dearest Rachel – I haven’t been telling you about what’s been going on at the house this past week, even though it’s probably the most momentous bit of news for the rest of the year pertaining to it; we’re finally done with the remodeling process. For now. The painters have come, starting Tuesday, and theyContinue reading “As Done As We Can Be, For Now”

To What Use…

Follow me, and I’ll show you to what good use… these wares can be put. Spirit of Christmas Present (Edward Woodward), to Scrooge (George C. Scott) in the market, from the telecast of A Christmas Carol (1984) Dearest Rachel – You’ll probably remember that, when we were looking to move out of the condominium andContinue reading “To What Use…”

The Freedom in Work

Dearest Rachel – “Work makes [you] free.” So the saying goes, most notoriously and deceptively on the iron gates of Auschwitz. Personally, I was never one to believe it; you recall how grateful I was to be freed from my job when your parents passed away, and you were pleased to be able to letContinue reading “The Freedom in Work”

Way Too Soon

Dearest Rachel – I know I deliberately retired to the bedroom early last night in order to get up with enough time to get ready and be at church by seven, but I meant to wake up at five. Two a.m. is way too soon. And yet, that’s when I found myself awake, mulling overContinue reading “Way Too Soon”

Paid In Full

Dearest Rachel – I was going to start off this week by telling you about how certain people have asked me on occasion what a ‘normal’ day is like at the ‘office’ for me, only to go on into great detail about how there isn’t a single day this week that’s going to be aContinue reading “Paid In Full”

from Rachel: Roots and Fruits

Hebrews 12:15 shows the link between roots and fruit. What does it warn against? “a bitter root growing up to cause trouble and defile many.” What is the “fruit” that the writer of Hebrews suggests springs from the “root” of bitterness? “trouble and defiling” Draw some fruit in the margin and label them with theContinue reading “from Rachel: Roots and Fruits”

Your Big Brother is Dying

Dearest Rachel – There were a lot of factors I could point to that conspired to present last night’s dream. There’s been all the work that’s been done her at our house, and the issues involved with navigating around everything while it’s been worked on. Hand in glove with that is the current issue withContinue reading “Your Big Brother is Dying”

A Dash of Cold Water

Dearest Rachel – In the last five or so years of your life, you decided to give up on your longstanding rule about messing with your hair (up until that point, you were afraid of losing its natural curl that you, like Freida from Peanuts, were so proud of), and dye it going forward. BetterContinue reading “A Dash of Cold Water”

Finished… For Now

Dearest Rachel – So, today’s the day. The inspectors are showing up this morning, and the final payments are due. I’ve written the checks for the latter (and yes, there’s two of them – one is the final payment as originally agreed upon, and another to cover the incidental additional work done on the house,Continue reading “Finished… For Now”

If You Can’t Take the Heat…

Dearest Rachel – Of course, the standard follow-up to that proposition is that you need to ‘get out of the kitchen.’ That, along with the expression about the buck stopping with him were among the most quotable lines from President Harry Truman (partly because much of what he said had to be sanitized for publicContinue reading “If You Can’t Take the Heat…”

Very Nearly Giving Up

Dearest Rachel – I’ve occasionally lamented that, unlike the letters we exchanged between each of our graduations from college – between the time I acknowledged that you would have been the one I would have chosen to spend the rest of my life with, had I been offered the opportunity (the window of which IContinue reading “Very Nearly Giving Up”

Enduring the Echo

Dearest Rachel – Now that the construction is actually in progress, I’m getting a fair amount of flak from Daniel regarding the things he doesn’t like about it all. And there’s nothing wrong with him expressing an opinion; in fact, I’d prefer he say what he does and doesn’t like as opposed to giving aContinue reading “Enduring the Echo”

You Can Check Out Any Time…

Dearest Rachel – While I’m sure you know the rest of that line, I should be pointing out to you that it’s a bit of an exaggeration. This isn’t the Hotel California, here; it’s not that one can never leave when the team is here laying the floor; it’s just that you may just haveContinue reading “You Can Check Out Any Time…”

Uncommon Nonchalance

Dearest Rachel – It seems I’m writing you a lot about yesterday’s events, as opposed to what’s going on today. For what it’s worth, today we are starting on a new phase of the project, with a whole different team, as the fellows who specializing in laying tile are going to be working on theContinue reading “Uncommon Nonchalance”

Inspectors General

Dearest Rachel – There’s a paradox to having so much going on in one’s life at a time (I was going to simplify that to ‘drama,’ but I don’t know how much of what’s going on really qualifies as such. Plus, I think of ‘drama’ as being somewhat self-inflicted, and while I suppose you couldContinue reading “Inspectors General”

A Chance to Sleep In

Dearest Rachel – I don’t know about you, since we rarely ever used the phrase, but I always thought the expression ‘thank God it’s Friday’ was just a little shy of blasphemous. Maybe it was just profane. Sure, it could appropriately be applied to Good Friday, but an ordinary Friday? Not so much. And yet,Continue reading “A Chance to Sleep In”

Insurance Against the Heat

Dearest Rachel – I’m sure you can guess, after yesterday’s letter, that I slept with the ceiling fan on. Indeed, I woke up so grateful for it – and for the misadventure brought it to be there. You know, I started this series of the letters as a form of therapy, but also as aContinue reading “Insurance Against the Heat”

Notes from the (Unplanned) Experiment

Dearest Rachel – I would almost expect that your first reaction would be to read that title, turn to me, and ask “Wait, wasn’t it your plan all along to sleep upstairs in the yellow room during the construction?” Well, yes, that’s true… sort of. You see, I had assumed that the operation would beContinue reading “Notes from the (Unplanned) Experiment”

Back to the Wall

Dearest Rachel – Matt has been the point man on the work in the laundry room. While I’ve been holed up upstairs, particularly since returning from my stress test, I’ve been hearing the clamor from downstairs through the floor. When I went down to check on Daniel (and confirm that Logan had joined him) IContinue reading “Back to the Wall”

Let Them Do Their Job

Dearest Rachel – Day two of what I expect to be about sixty (although, since that includes weekends, it would probably be closer to forty-five or so, wouldn’t it?) between yesterday’s start-up date and when the remodeling is finished. This time around, I’ve decided to actually go in to the ‘office,’ even though there isn’tContinue reading “Let Them Do Their Job”

Hard Reboot

Dearest Rachel – I know you would consider me as such, but I would deny that I’m really a ‘morning person,’ except by default. That is, I’m clearly not a night owl – I would rarely stay up past midnight, even back in college, and would usually be in bed by 10:30. But that wasContinue reading “Hard Reboot”

And So it Begins

Dearest Rachel – After some last-minute scrambling (and no, that has nothing to do with eggs – neither Daniel nor I have had the chance to have breakfast), all the cabinets, all the drawers, all the counters have been emptied and placed… somewhere. They just aren’t in the kitchen or the laundry room anymore, andContinue reading “And So it Begins”

Family Room No More

Dearest Rachel – As much as I like the setup I have in the yellow room upstairs, and I’m glad for an alternate bedroom to use while the construction begins in the laundry room next week, I’m a little bit concerned about getting too comfortable up there. I fell asleep in the recliner pretty quicklyContinue reading “Family Room No More”

Preparing in Spite of Myself

Dearest Rachel – You know well that, even when you were around, I rarely took packing all that seriously. While you would put together lists of all the things you thought we would need (granted, that list was considerably longer for a ‘get away from everything’ type trip like the island, as opposed to anContinue reading “Preparing in Spite of Myself”

Painful Repairs

Dearest Rachel – For what it’s worth, I didn’t spend a lot of time at the ‘office’ today. After talking about it for some weeks, the day is finally here, and Dad is going to have his cataract surgery. Surprisingly, he’s not all that nervous about it; personally, I’d be an absolute wreck. The mereContinue reading “Painful Repairs”

A Meal in Itself

Dearest Rachel – I try to remember some of the inside jokes we used to share with each other as opportunity presents itself, but sometimes, I don’t have quite what I need to put it together. For instance, this picture is as close as I can get to the particular joke I’m looking for, asContinue reading “A Meal in Itself”

It Ain’t Carnegie Hall

Dearest Rachel – The weather can be particularly perverse at times. Just yesterday, I’d heard that the New Year’s event to be held up at camp starting today had to be canceled, due to a lack of snow and the lake not having frozen over. This morning, I wake up to a blanket of snowContinue reading “It Ain’t Carnegie Hall”

The Plans That We’d Made

Dearest Rachel – I’ve already talked about a couple of Christmas-adjacent songs that talk more about staying inside and avoiding the worst of the weather, that either leave me envious of the couple that can do just that together, or make me worry if I have to become some kind of creep in order toContinue reading “The Plans That We’d Made”

The House Without

Dearest Rachel – I hope you don’t mind, but you know this was never something I thought was worth bothering with, since we never really celebrated the holidays at our own home. Maybe, if we intend to do more hosting in our renovated place, that might change, but for now, we aren’t really going toContinue reading “The House Without”

I Suppose I Could Call it Home

Dearest Rachel – I really need to be getting some more sleep, if I can. But what I just saw needs to be related before I fall back asleep and forget it. It was an apartment that I was preparing for us – the three of us – to live in. The main vestibule ofContinue reading “I Suppose I Could Call it Home”

Biden My Time

Dearest Rachel – I’m sure that you wouldn’t approve, I don’t feel like there’s anything I can do about it. Now that the house has been thoroughly cleaned out, there are so many more rooms Daniel and I can use. And use them we do; except it means that we’re rarely in the same roomContinue reading “Biden My Time”

Given A Free Hand

Dearest Rachel – It’s taken the better part of the month, and several miscommunications and missed connections, but we’ve finally gotten a team of landscapers working on the yard. This is the same father and son team that have been working on the folks’ place for years, but it never occurred to us to hireContinue reading “Given A Free Hand”

Daddy, Chill

Dearest Rachel – Some mornings, I find myself waking up, wondering what exactly it going to come to me to write you about. There are days when I’ve been dreaming about this or that, and have to tell you about it first thing in the morning, before I forget it all. There are others whenContinue reading “Daddy, Chill”

Steampunk Living

Dearest Rachel – You’ll have to understand, I hadn’t intended to have anyone over today. I left the office early because I needed to drop something off at FedEx (the bank had me sign some papers for the estate) and get a few accessories for my costume on Saturday (the ‘suspicious astronaut’ costume – IContinue reading “Steampunk Living”

Open Door Policy

…As I told you, the door to my office is always open. I think you know why it’s always open – that was stolen, I’d like that returned. Bob Newhart, Captain’s remarks from “The Cruise of the U.S.S. Codfish,” The Button-Down Mind of Bob Newhart (1960) Dearest Rachel – I used to think that oursContinue reading “Open Door Policy”

I Need the Hat and Bullwhip

Dearest Rachel – I want to first point out that I don’t say that out of any need to be ‘cool’ or anything – although those accessories would seem undeniably make me look a lot cooler than I am. It’s also not just because this is turning into an archaeological dig of our relationship. It’sContinue reading “I Need the Hat and Bullwhip”

No Dead Bodies, But Skeletons Nonetheless

Dearest Rachel – I have a feeling we’re not going to be making a whole lot of progress today. Today Jan has resolved to begin work on the crawlspace, and while I know you kept most of our Christmas stuff and the stuff for the island down there, if there’s anything else from anywhere else,Continue reading “No Dead Bodies, But Skeletons Nonetheless”

A Bountiful Harvest

Dearest Rachel – Normally, when he barks to be let out during the day, I’m not the one home to put Chompers out; that’s something Daniel handles. Even when I’m home, I’m usually busy with Jan in another part of the house. And during weekends and holidays, when I am the go-to for getting himContinue reading “A Bountiful Harvest”

On My Own Recognizance

Dearest Rachel – So, Logan came over yesterday, and I did my level best to stay out of the boys way. Kept busy with writing to you, and picking up dinner for them from a local outlet of some national pizza chain. Also slept a bit more, as the dog seems somehow calmer when there’sContinue reading “On My Own Recognizance”

The Brief Revisitation

Dearest Rachel – So, before last night’s online Bible study with Pastor Joel, I went through the usual routine of feeding Chompers and taking him outside to deal with the usual business. While out there, I bent down at some point to keep him from walking through the puddles he’d just made – and asContinue reading “The Brief Revisitation”

The Ledger

Dearest Rachel – I’ve mentioned this speech before, and I’m sure I’ll mention bits of it in future, but here it is as we first encountered it, for the benefit of those following us: The reason it came to mind today was because (in preparation for Jan’s visit today) I was going through more ofContinue reading “The Ledger”