Living with Nooks, Crannies, & Granny

Living in a studio apartment has had its ups and downs. Everyday, I’m learning the importance of living a simple and clean life. I am learning to properly store belonging in the storage space that I do have, and try not to freak out over the space that I do not have. I am learning that stuff really does not matter; that this place is not my home.
The greatest lesson that I’m learning is living with an 84 year-old woman. Jessie is the homeowner of the basement that I’m occupying. The delightful snowbird is equally stubborn and joyful. This used to be an oxy-moron to me. How can somebody be blunt and happy all at the same time? Bluntness has always had a way of offending me. I have realized though that Jessie has no reason to care what people think. She doesn’t use her honest remarks as a way to be cutting; she’s simply being honest.
Jessie’s Florida tan and smile wrinkles melt my heart every time I see her! She loves life and loves people even more. She tells so many stories about her family, and her late husband that I feel like I know them.
Jessie has worked hard her while life taking care of her family and friends. Even after surviving a stroke two years ago? She is quite mobile – mowing her own lawn, spraying the house for summer bugs (not letting me help), and cleaning. She loves to harass me about all the “stuff” I have packed in my tiny place! She says “one day you’ll give this all to your family and not collect so much!” “IT’S NOT THAT MUCH,” I say. And she laughs.
As I begin my journey striving to be the woman of Proverbs 31, I look not only to Christ as my source of strength and delight, but also toward my neighbor Jessie, who has been practicing this unique lifestyle for 84 years.