Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love. -Mother Teresa
About six years ago or so, we moved a couple miles north to a new neighborhood that is extremely convenient to Guerin Catholic High School, where we knew we had about a decade ahead of us. Three and a half of those ten years remain and time is flying by at warp speed, but I digress. The point I was about to make is that when we moved we assumed we’d be giving up the built in SLDM carpool help we enjoyed in our old neighborhood. You see, the new place is further from St. Louis de Montfort Catholic School where we still had one remaining. However, I chalked that one up in the “cons” column and decided I could live with it. Our good and gracious God had another plan.
You see, it turns out that our NEXT DOOR neighbor on Randolph Crescent Drive was (and is) a lovely Catholic school family from SLDM named Dunlap. We weren’t here long before I got a text message from Meghan Dunlap alerting me to this little fact and asking me if I wanted to be their carpool partner. YOU BETCHA. We settled into a fairly workable routine where one of the three adults living at the Dunlap home would take the kiddos to school, and I would bring them home in the afternoon. Score!!
I admit that I still don’t know Meghan and her beer-loving, smarty-pants husband, Grady, as well as I should. However, I do know that together they are raising three really terrific children– Sam, Matt and Lily. All three of them entertained me during their time in my carpool. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to grinning the most at little Lily, who is a spunky piece of sunshine. Perhaps that’s because I don’t have any girls myself? In any case, the Dunlap kids are polite and lovely humans. I credit their mother, ha? We moms have to stick together.
Here’s what I know for sure. Meghan Dunlap is not only beautiful, but she’s incredibly bright. In fact, I am fairly certain her degree is in engineering. This means she’s better at math than I ever dreamed of being and I’m trying not to hold that “smart and gorgeous” combo against her. She has an impressive work ethic and a great deal of professional responsibility in her role at work, which I don’t even begin to understand (because mostly her job was explained to me by grade school aged children). Those three also made it clear she’s supportive and loving as a mother and also very effective at instituting a few mandatory yard work days each year, which always makes me smile and want to yell affirming things out my window in solidarity. Kids are such hilarious truth-tellers. She’s also a thoughtful daughter who definitely inherited it from her incredibly amazing mom, Judy Sullivan, who lives with them in the cutest apartment right inside the house.
There have been multiple times over the years when Meghan has reached out with care, concern or compassion to our family. Also, when scheduling craziness got the best of us, Meghan always was patient and kind rolling with the punches. These are no small things to those of us who are sometimes just barely managing to survive the days. The little things? They are actually EVERYTHING.
Sam, Matt and Lily have no idea how blessed they are to have a faith-filled woman of God as their mom. With their incredibly busy lives and professional schedules, it would be oh so easy to simply skip mass on Sunday or not attend to the spiritual needs of her family. That’s not what Meghan is about. I’ve been watching. She’s working hard to get it right. I see you, neighbor, and so does the Lord. Today’s shout out is for you! Well done, good and faithful servant!!