We live where most people would refer to as “out.” In other words, getting here is not usually an accident and one would need a fairly good reason to drive out this way. We have a church, two gas stations, a caution light, and a brand new Dollar General (we are actually quite proud to have it). Other than that, the typical conveniences such as shopping trips and doctor visits are always planned ahead of time. So imagine how surprising it has been since the pandemic that my house seems to be a gathering place for young people.

Any day of the week during the summer, holidays, or weekends, the side entrance of our house is littered with an assortment of tennis shoes, slides, and flips flops… all belonging to teenage and college students. It is a respectful albeit unsuccessful attempt on their part at keeping the floors clean in the house. I have begun to recognize some of these shoes. There are always my daughter’s Birkenstock’s, my older son’s tennis shoes, and a vast array of sizes and styles from various friends. It is a sign of normalcy that was not present just one short year ago. Basically, the more vehicles in the driveway there are, the more shoes will be at our door.

All in a day’s work…

Tonight as I was walking in the house, tiny grains of sand kept sticking to my feet… sand that had been on my kids’ feet, their friends’ feet, and just from our comings and goings in general. And I was grateful. Grateful for family. Grateful for friends. Grateful for normalcy. And I am grateful for the cars in the driveway, the sound of laughter in our house, and even the sand that is on the floor.

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