Monday, May 26, 2014

An Open Letter To My Neighbors (And Anyone Else Who May Need Firewood)…

So, for the most part, I do believe we are pretty good at sharing. Sure, we have our moments (everyone does) in which we may be reluctant to share that which we have been given in abundance (or sometimes not in abundance).

I don’t say this in a braggart sort of way. I am simply saying this: if you need something that I have, I will gladly share.

Because I know if I am not gladly sharing it, then I don’t get credit with God…no “God points” for a good deed is not even worth it. I might as well NOT do the good deed if I’m not going to get God points.
I am joking…it doesn’t really work like that.

At least, I hope it doesn’t. I do not recall a verse in the Bible which lays out the rules in such a way, however, I have not memorized the Bible so it honestly could be in there and I simply do not recall it.

But I digress.

We will share. All you have to do is ask.

ASK is the key word in the sentence.

I feel I must push "pause" right here, but please stick with me...I promise to bring it back around: Again...not to brag, but we work hard for our firewood. As you may recall...but you probably don't and do not feel badly if you don't; I still love you. I realize that it's also possible that you don't have any idea about that which I am speaking...either way, I shall give you a brief synopsis: each summer, we drive to a friend's house in Cloverdale (which is about an hour+ away), cut down a tree (maybe 2...depends on the size), drag it back to their house, chop it (with a chain saw...these are no small trees) into smaller pieces, and then run those pieces on the splitter.  And then stack it all in the truck. And drive it home where we unload it and restack it in nice neat piles/stacks behind our house...which is where we continue our story, already in progress.

My point here is this: if you are having a bonfire/campfire/fire-pit event at your house and you find that you don’t have enough firewood, just ask us if you can have a couple pieces from our stack of wood. I assure you that we will gladly share.

Do not, however, send your children with flashlights through the backyards to steal it from us.

And if you are not sending your children to steal it, but send them to “go into those trees and find some wood to burn” but they return just minutes later with nice-sized pieces which have obviously been cut (but you did not send them with an ax)…you should probably ask a few questions.

We only know about two definite times that this has happened, but I would venture to guess that it’s been more than that.

That’s purely speculation on my part, but since we’ve lived here 9 years, I cannot imagine that there have only been two occurrences, happening years apart.

Because it was the same kids.

The first time, their dad found out and brought us a bundle of firewood which he purchased to replace it.  We found the replacement of the wood totally not necessary…acknowledgement on the part of the kiddos would have sufficed. Which actually did not happen.

And not to turn this into a diatribe on “How to Parent”…because I know we all have our own way of doing things and have to do what is best for our own families.

I get that completely and do not claim to be the best parent in the world, or know the most or whatever.

But…our thought has always been that we thought the kids who stole the firewood should have acknowledged it and apologized. It is definitely what we would have had our children do…agree with me or not, but it’s what we would have done. The whole “owning up to your mistakes” kind of thing…not in an “embarrass the kids” way at all. I don't want to shame a child...just want them to own up. I think there is a difference and it is all in the way it is handled.

Again...different parenting styles. I get it which is why we never asked for the kids to apologize.

But last night my husband saw the same kids do the same thing. He was taking the dog out, when he saw the flicker of flashlights bouncing around and he heard children’s voices talking about “getting firewood.”  And he watched them boldly walk right up to the pile and each take at least one sizeable log.

He didn’t say anything…I think he was too stunned. He waited for them to come back…but they never did.

Just in case they or someone they know is reading this though…please be advised that he will be ready for you next time.


  1. Wow. Maybe they thought if they asked for the wood, they'd have to invite you to the party. They were just trying to avoid an awkward situation. :)
    Just kidding. Your neighbors...I can't say anything nice so I won't say anything at all.

    1. The really weird part: it's people we don't really know and have maybe spoken to a handful of times EVER. So odd...

  2. Please have a video camera ready when your husband lies in wait for the little hoodlums....

  3. Strange. I wonder how the parents will handle it this time?