random notes and chit chat from the insanity of our life

Peek into our life and see how crazy it can get with 6 kids, homeschooling, sewing, and now farming. We're in our first year on the land, and entertaining the world with what we don't know. By the grace of God, we're learning, day by day, so pull up a chair and laugh with us!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

a mad passionate love affair

I am madly, passionately, insanely in love with the South.
You see, we're new here, so I'm shocked by this.  I expected to like it, but not to feel this intense..."rightness", right from the start.  Like coming home, where I'd never been before.  Like the entire area was saying "there you are, we've been waiting for you", as we drove along.
I love the people.  Everyone is so friendly...they wave as you drive by, even if they don't know you.  They smile and say "hi" as you pass in the store.  They chat everywhere.  It's wonderful.
I love the accents.  From a light touch, to an unintelligible, thick as syrup drawl, I love it.  It's musical.  It's beautiful.  It's contagious, and the kids are already teasing me about mine.  It's only sometimes, but yes, Ah'm developin' it.  And I'm thrilled!
I love the weather.  I love thunder and lightning, and rain.  It's like fireworks, but better.  I love that it's random, that unlike CA, where it almost NEVER rains in the summer, here it rains whenever the heck it feels like it.  I find it fascinating.
I love the humidity.  Yes.  I said it.  I admit, there have been a few days here and there that have been oppressive, but for the most part, it's just nice.  I love that it's not dry all the time.  My skin loves it.  My lungs love it.  It's awesome.
I love the green.  Everywhere, green.  Trees, bushes, grasses, everywhere.  Green...and flowers!  Beautiful flowers.  It's like spring, all summer long this year. 
I love the water.  There is just water everywhere.  Creeks, rivers, ponds, springs...so much water.  I thought northern CA was wet and green... Boy, I knew NOTHING! 
I love the religion.  It's so different here.  There are churches EVERYWHERE, and everyone talks about church.  One of the first things people ask, after your name, is where you go to church.  Stores have signs about Jesus, clerks tell you to have a blessed day, billboards, bumper stickers...Jesus is EVERYWHERE!
I love the wildlife!  We see deer, squirrels, racoons, turtles, birds of all shapes and colors, and the BUTTERFLIES!  Amazing.
I'm sure there's more, but my dessert is ready, and I'm tired.  Hugs, all!  I hope you are as blessed where you live as we are here.

This is my mission field

Sometimes, it seems like the entire Christian world is all about missions.  Uganda.  Haiti.  Mexico.  Romania.  Talking about missions.  Funding missions.  Sending their kids on missions.  Going on missions themselves.  And I start to feel like...less.  Less of a Christian, because I haven't been on a mission.  Can't afford a mission, haven't sent my kids on missions.  I get jealous of the whole idea.  A trip to another country, to help people who NEED me.  People who need JESUS.  And I could be His hands and feet, and help them.
But I know, this IS my mission field.  THIS is where God has placed me, where He has called me.  I am to be His hands and feet here, to children.  My children (where I fail daily, as I'm sure Jesus never shrieked at someone to "STOP HUMMING OR I'LL TIE YOUR LIPS IN A KNOT"), and to other children around us.
And right now, I KNOW that I am where He wants me.  We live in a neighborhood full of children, some of whom seem to REALLY need someone to love on them.  And to bake cookies for them.  Have snacks after school for them.  Hand out lollipops to them.  Have a basket of crayons, and a stack of paper on the table for them.  And when I see my daughter, out on the lawn fixing bikes for the little guy next door, or another of the kids asking if he can share his toys...I know that this mission field is more for us, than them.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

This is me...

I have trouble posting frequently.  Maybe you haven't noticed...yeah, right.  I have tried, and tried, and I have finally figured out WHY I struggle with it.  It's because I'm boring.  Yes, you heard me.  Boring.  Our life...it's not really exciting.  Just normal, everyday stuff.  And I'm honestly not sure anyone wants to read that much about it.
I have bloggers I follow, and they are all really great.  Thought provoking.  Inspirational.  Motivating.  They make me excited to read the next post, but our life...it's really just life, you know?
We're not out changing the world.  We're not busy with activities.  I'm not the woman everyone wants to be.  And my kids aren't the homeschoolers who have graduated college at 7, speak 5 languages fluently and invented somethng that saves lives in Africa. 
I'm the mom next door.  The one who bakes too many cookies and hands them to any kid in the yard.  Exercises sporadically.  Spends too much time reading, or playing on my phone, while watching the kids hunt for bugs and fall off their bikes.  The one who doesn't get up when her kids fall, even when they're hollering (Hey, there's no blood!).  The one who lets them ride around the neighborhood, without following them herself. 
My kids are the loud ones.  Every neighborhood has some.  You know, the ones constantly yelling and laughing and fighting and in general being...kids.  They read...even though sometimes I have to argue to get them to.  They leave toys all over the yard...and bits of paper...and rarely wear shoes.  Their clothes are often stained, and they're dirty, a LOT.  They catch bugs and bring them to me, and we identify them (after a girly screech, lol), and sometimes, we keep them a while.
I pin lots of recipes, and craft ideas, and educational stuff.  A lot of it is "wouldn't it be great if we...?"  Oh, yeah, it would, but my kids don't WANT to learn to sing the presidents in order, or make a paper mache model of the solar system with size and topographical accuracy, or ...any of the things the "good homeschool moms" do.  And I probably won't really make those cool rooms for them.  The themed ones, with the cool crafty decorating stuff, and it all coordinates.. 
So, this is me.  And it's the best me you're getting.  SO get used to it, and maybe I'll remember to post me a bit more often.  But no promises, because I might be busy reading to kids, or baking junk food, or killing zombies with pea shooters...you know, important stuff!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Settling in

So, it's been a bit, I guess.  Things have been crazy, but good.  We're at a really nice campground, which we are enjoying greatly.  Cheap, lots of room for the kids to run around, a creek to swim in, even a donkey to pet.  We need to work on getting into a better routine, and we're working on finding a church home, but...it's going.
The kids enjoyed VBS a lot.  And they did the library reading program.  Got lots of great prizes.  We're working on using those, slowly, lol.  Still need to get stuff out of storage, but we've got to wait for dryer weather for that.  Really...not much going on.  But, I'll try to post more often again.  I promise!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


Somehow managed to delete this by accident!

Albuquerque, NM
Memorial Day 2013!
Got to Alb in great time!  Nice drive.  Leaving early works well, and having the kids eat breakfast in the car.  Will do that again for sure!  Setting up the RV is down to an art.  Takes us..under an hour, I think.  Then the kids swam for about a half hour, but it was too windy and chilly.  So I did laundry, and then we decided on a treat…eating out!  We went to Golden Corral. First time for all but Steve and Mariah, and WOW, were we thrilled!  Everything was good, and we ate till we were stuffed, then home to put the kids to bed.
Next day, we decided on the Albuquerque Bio Park.  Zoo, Aquarium and Botanical Gardens.  Well, it was AWESOME!  A bit spendy, but SO worth it.  We never even MADE it to the Botanical Gardens, either, except the part where the train does a loop through, lol.  The zoo was awesome.  Really nice habitats, where you could really see everything, but the animals looked like they had plenty of room, and stuff to do.  Running water, like streams, in every enclosure.  Lots of baby animals.  Giraffe, Orangutang, prairie dogs, elephant…  The reptile house is big, with LOTS of awesome stuff.  Mostly venomous, which the kids loved of course.  Wolves.  So much!  And then you ride a train (included if you buy the combined ticket for all 3 attractions) the 2.5 miles to the aquarium.  Again, WOW.  Really great, especially once you get to the bottom level where they have the shark tank, with the sea turtles.  Everyone was in awe.  Lee was the first one around the corner to see it, and just started yelling “Mommy!  Sharks, I see sharks!  Daddy!  SHARKS!”  It was really great.
Next day was boring really, lol.  Groceries and such.  Stopped at Camping World for some roof patch, walked through a nice motorhome.  A Seneca.  Maybe someday…  And with that, New Mexico was over!

Amarillo, TX
Thursday, we left Albuquerque for Amarillo, TX.  Not a bad drive, left early with muffins for breakfast in the car.  As we got into Amarillo, we saw Cadillac Ranch!!!  Steve was thrilled, as that was on his bucket list.  SO we parked the RV at the park (not a fancy place, lol, but cheap) and went to Walmart to get some spray paint then back we went.  Sprayed cars, lots of pics, great time was had by all.  Then we decided to splurge on a burger place I’d heard of but never been…Whataburger!  Oh, very good.  We enjoyed that a lot.

Sherman Tx
Friday, May, 31.
We decided NOT to stay in Amarillo another day.  Nothing we wanted to see really, and my good friend was having a graduation party for her daughter the next day that we wanted to get to.  Long drive, but we made it all the way to Sherman in about 6 hours.  The drive was beautiful!  We thought Tx was all desert, but turns out it’s got some amazing gorgeous green areas.  Especially fell in love with St Jo, which looks like a movie set town!
 Set up in record time, then off to visit!  Had a wonderful few days visiting a friend I’d never before met in person.  I’m going to miss her, and her whole family.  They were lots of fun!  After worrying that it wouldn’t be “the same”, finally meeting in person, it was better.  Just like being with family.  So comfortable, joking and laughing and relaxing.  The kids got along great, too.  It was a wonderful break from our travels.
Sunday the 2nd we decided to go into DFW.  The kids had specially requested a trip to the McDonalds shaped like a Happy Meal, so that was our lunch destination.  Funny for looking so odd on the outside, the inside was fancy shmancy!  Crystal, wood seating, nice…very little plastic.  And the play area was much bigger than we were used to!  The kids had fun for a bit, then we headed out to see the cattle drive in Forth Worth.  Got there in time to walk a bit, see the shops, buy postcards, see the train…and the cattle drive.  Smaller than I’d hoped, but still worth seeing.  Those longhorns are gorgeous!! 
After some shopping and visiting, Tuesday morning was it.  Time to go.  Hugs and love to my friend and her family.  We all made friends, even Jack, who is hard to win over!  And Sasha now wants a piano…and Mariah wants to join Civil Air Patrol after visiting it with my friends girls…

West Monroe, LA
Another longer drive, but such gorgeous scenery!  The green, the trees, the vines…  Beautiful!  I love trees and green, so we are definitely getting into my kind of environment!
The park here is nice enough.  Would be better if the pool wasn’t out of commission.  They found a crack in it just this week, so no swimming.  Waaah.  Especially with this humidity and heat!  We will adjust, I’m sure, but it is a HUGE change! 
Got here and set up, and just hung out in the trailer in the a/c for the evening.  Just too hot to do anything.  Then, after a good nights sleep, we were off and running!
First was Duck Commander.  We all love to watch Duck Dynasty, so getting to take pics here, and get a shirt for Dad and his collection, was a big deal.  Sadly, none of the stars were there, but we didn’t really expect them to be. 
Next was the farmers market.  Not huge, but nice.  Got some delicious peaches, green beans for dinner, and fresh (not roasted) peanuts.  Very different, but not bad.  Mariah LOVES them.  Cool to try new stuff, you know?  And again…those peaches! 
Last but certainly not least, the Beidenharn Museum!  Neat place.  First, it’s a coca cola museum, since the Biedenharns were the first to bottle coca cola.  They even sell Coke in bottles for .05 each during the tour, from an old fashioned vending machine!  That was awesome (though I paid for the caffeine that night, let me tell you!).  During that part of the tour, they explain all about the bottling, how it came about, how they do it, etc.  Neat.  Second part of the tour is the gardens, and then their home, which has been kept as it was decades ago.  Gorgeous, and the ladies doing the tour had great stories to tell!  And then lastly, Emmy Lou Biedenharn had a Bible collection, which you get to tour.  Awesome.  Had a leaf from a Gutenburg Bible, lots of old and unique Bibles, etc.  And some other cool stuff, like ancient greek jugs, Biblical coins…neat stuff.
After that, it was time to come home for a late lunch, and relaxing again.  The kids rode bikes around and read and such.  Nice day.  Its awesome to be out of the wind finally, so I can grill.  Steaks were delicious for dinner again!
That night, I was up for hours, and was treated to something new.  A Southern storm!  Lightning.  Thunder.  It went on for hours, with some rain in there, too.  Gosh, that was amazing!  Loved it!
The next day was Thursday, and it seemed like a good day to hang out and relax (and do some laundry), since it seemed more storms were coming.  None ended up hitting us really, but the kids rode bikes, played pool, watched a movie and we all generally did nothing for the day.  After an early bedtime, it’ll be time to head to Mississippi in the morning!

The end of the journey

Lake Okatibbee, Meridian, Mississippi
Lake Okatibbee was a whim.  In looking at rv parks along our route, I couldn’t find anyplace that looked awesome, but this looked ok.  Steve likes lakes a lot, and it had a small water park nearby, so…why not?  Well, when we got off the freeway, and the GPS said 25 miles more (the internet said 9 miles off the freeway), I got nervous.  Thought about finding a different park…was afraid we were getting lost…the roads were narrow, and up and down and twisty…but we stuck it out, and are SO glad we did!  One of the best places we stayed!
First, it’s very treed.  It’s on a lake, in the woods, big spots, lots of room and peace and quiet.  Little swingset, not much to speak of.  And the lake is DOWNHILL (more of a cliff than a hill), at least in the area we were in, which made me nervous.  But it was so beautiful and relaxing.
So, Saturday morning, we went to town first.  I had found out about an old working grist mill at an old general store, so we made a drive.  The store was awesome, and the lady running it was great.  Told us lots of stories about the history of the store and such.  Unfortunately, due to new govt regulations and insurance, she can’t run the gristmill much anymore, so we didn’t get to see that.  And she was out of hoop cheese, which we’d wanted to try.  But she had fresh roasted peanuts, and soda in glass bottles, and fabulous history to share, so it was worth it.
Then, after a stop for groceries, and lunch at the RV, we went and spent a couple hours at the water park.  2 of the slides were closed, so it was only $5 per person, as opposed to $9, lol.  But it was WONDERFUL!  Even Steve and I played in the water, and Jack started to enjoy it, too.  Everyone slid and splashed and laughed for a couple hours, and got worn out. 
Dinner and bed rounded out our day, and we all slept well before getting up Sunday morning to finish our trip to GA!

Rome, Georgia
So, we had decided to get to GA.  It was time.  We went straight through Alabama, with some adventures where the freeway was closed.  Spent all day in the car, saw some gorgeous scenery, and then…there we were.  Rome.  Finally.  Hugs and love all around, so glad to see our friends!  Now to start learning our new home, and enjoying our new life!!!  It’s the end of the journey, but the beginning of another big adventure!
If you’ve followed this far, thank you for joining us in our journey.  I’ll try to keep posting as we settle into our new life, lol, but can’t promise to be very frequent.  I’ll do my best!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Catching up!!

Calico Ghost Town
So, we left Bakersfield and headed up 58 to something we had just heard about a couple nights before.  Calico Ghost Town, near Yermo, CA.  Wow, well worth the stop.  One night at their campground, which was just ok, but the ghost town itself was great.
We got there mid afternoon, and went up to the ghost town as soon as we were set up.  Tons of old buildings, some original to the town, some not, all restored beautifully.  A tour through a real mine (wish it was longer, but it was great anyhow.  A  place to pan “gold” (fools gold of course, lol).  A mystery shack, which, cool though it was, I’ll probably never do again.  I got SO sick in there.  I get carsick too, badly, so maybe it’s related…?  We had sodas in the saloon…some great sodas, in real glass bottles.  I loved my Shirley Temple soda, and Mariahs Dodge City Sasparilla was a real hit.  Both made with real cane sugar!
The kids also got to do leather stamping projects in the saddlery, for only about $2 each for the leather.  And some of the shops had some great stuff! Hard to leave, but it closes at 5, so leave we did.
After a good nights sleep, we went back up after breakfast.  Rode the train, and went into the woodworking shop, which was full of some of the best stuff ever.  Wooden toys…iron “bar puzzles”…tons of great stuff.  I really would like Steve to make me a picnic gear carrier like I saw.  For eating outside on the patio, it carries 3 bottles (ketchup and the like), paper plates, a paper towel roll, etc, with a nice handle for easy transport.  Really loved that! 
Then, it was time to go, though I suspect Lee would have stayed forever if he could.  Especially in the mine, which was Tonys favorite place.  Mariah loved the mystery shack (I was the only one to get queasy!)  Lee loved the leatherworking (may have to get him some leatherworking stuff eventually).  Sasha lovedit all, and Megan really enjoyed the shop selling the leather jackets and such, for the smell!

Needles, CA
Last stop in CA! 
Well, on the way to Needles, we lost our alternator, about 80 miles west of Needles.  Man, there is NOTHING out there!  NOTHING!  Even the rest stops were closed!!  But we made it to Needles, to our campground, and got set up anyhow.  Got a new alternator the next day, in Fort Mojave, AZ, and discovered that the prices were SO MUCH CHEAPER over the border!  Wow.  Total sticker shock at how much cheaper, especially the gas.  Did some grocery shopping, drove through Bullhead City, AZ and Laughlin, NV, and did a LOT of swimming for a few days.
The kids are really getting into swimming.  Mariah swims underwater.  Lee and Tony jump in and go under, and Sasha even dunked her head before we left the last day.  The only one NOT in the water is Jack.  He’ll put his feet in once in a while, but that’s it.  Not interested at all.  But he doesn’t complain about the life vest, so that’s fine.
Best of all was the daytrip (afternoon trip? Lol) to Oatman, AZ.  Old gold mining town on old Route 66.  They havea gunfight, which was cute, at least once a day (twice when the weather isn’t too hot), lots of cute shops (more Sasparilla, yum!), and best of all, wild burros roaming the streets!!  Seriously!  Some of the shops sell burro feed, so we fed, and petted, and fell in love.  One of them tried to steal the bag with Steves new t-shirt, lol!  Lots of great pics there. 

Flagstaff, AZ
So we left Needles about 7pm, after 3 days.  Nice place, would go there again, but preferably when it’s not so stinking hot!  Left at night to drive in the cooler weather to Flagstaff.  Good choice.  That heat, plus the climb in elevation, while pulling a large RV can be tough on the van.  This was perfect.  We left Needles about 7pm, at 92 degrees approx.   got to Flagstaff about 1115 pm…at about 44 degrees!  What a shock, lol!!!  Pulled into Camping World for the night, and went to sleep.
Morning came, and we got what we needed at Camping World (would NOT recommend that one!  Not thrilled with them), then off to Walmart for some groceries, Jiffy Lube for an oil change, and Bashas for produce.  Nice prices, and those cantelopes look delicious!  Looking forward to dinner!

Winslow, AZ
So, weleft Flagstaff, and after another hour or so drive, we got to Winslow, AZ.  Yes, such a fine sight to see…  Need to take some pics of the kids at “Standing on a corner” park downtown before we leave.  Homolovi State Park found, we parked, hooked up, had a late lunch and then went to the visitor center. 
The rangers are VERY friendly and helpful.  We bought some inexpensive field guides to Southwestern snakes, insects, poisonous creatures and cactus.  Lee is obsessed with cacti!  We have already identified one of the ones near the visitor station, as well as the 3.5 foot gopher snake we saw.  Looking forward to seeing the ruins tomorrow, and hoping the wind dies down some.  It’s nasty!  But the ruins look awesome, and I’d hate for the kids to miss that. 
Saturday morning came, bright and sunshiny early.  Not much of a morning person, lol.  But we got up and moving anyhow!  After breakfast, we headed out to Homolovi II, one of the ruins here.  Wow, it was really spectacular!  Something about holding pottery shards that were made and used by people approximately 1000 years ago…  Tony was in love with it, too.  He just kept moving around yelling “Mama!  Pottery! More pottery!”  The rangers had encouraged us to let the kids climb, go in and out of the ruins of the house, handle all the pottery shards they liked…  Just don’t take any with us.  We gave Tony a quick pat down before getting in the car, to be safe, lol.
Next was into town, for a Native American art and dance festival.  Sadly, we didn’t get to see any dancing, but the art was fabulous, and there was a newsletter about the Petrified Forest, which prepared us for what we wanted to do the next day.  After taking the kids home, I ran back to do some laundry at the Laundromat.  Then after dinner, we capped off the day with a drive to the Little Painted Desert state park.  It’s a spot where you can see out into the Little Painted Desert, and as promised, it was spectacular at sunset!  You can’t see it during the drive, and you turn into the park…still can’t see it…drive to the parking area and there it is.  Incredible.  I made the kids stay in the car, as it’s rather steep, but they got a good view from where I parked, and I got some wonderful pics. 
Sunday was the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert.  Not too bad a drive from Winslow, and lots to see on the way.  We saw a motel that’s all teepees (the kids thought it was the Cozy Cone from Cars, lol!), and lots of dinosaur statues, as well as the Cholla power plant, which is coal fired.  Neat to see.
The Petrified Forest and Painted Desert were awesome.  Again, lots of great pictures.  The museum was neat, and just seeing and touching all those amazing things God made…  wow.  I don’t even know any other word but wow.  He is so amazing.
Tomorrow is Memorial Day, and it's early to rise, pack and go.  It’ll be quite a drive to Albuquerque, where I’ll finally have internet, I hope, and can post all this, lol.  Looking forward to wifi…a swimming pool…a playground…  Not sure what we’ll do, or if we’ll just hang out and relax for a day or two.  Either way, it’s another adventure!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

On the road, week one!

So, it's Saturday, the 18th, and we left on Friday the 10th.  Didn't have much internet at Yosemite, so haven't posted lately.  Let's catch up!
Friday, we wanted to leave around lunchtime, but it took a lot longer to get ready than we expected.  Pulled out about 2.  The drive to Yosemite should have taken 3 hours...ended up about 5 or so, lol.  Never having been there, neither of us expected the steep drive up that would make us crawl, and stop over and over, pulling off to let the van cool.  But we made it, and it was WELL worth it!  Yosemite was amazing.
We planned to leave there Monday, but ended up extending our stay to Thursday.  It was just so gorgeous, and the campground was great, and we had nowhere to be, lol.  We did several short hikes, saw the history center, the big trees at Mariposa Grove, all sorts of stuff.  It was just wonderful.  We took tons and tons of pics, which I still need to figure how to get off the phones, lol.  And videos and pics on the video cam, too.
We went actually into Yosemite 4 days, and spent a lot of time relaxing at the campground, too.  The kids rode bikes, waded in the river, sorted what they believe to be gold out of the sand on the banks...
Definitely somewhere we plan to return to someday!
Highlights of Yosemite...seeing Steves face as he saw Half Dome.  Lee falling in the water after being warned the rocks were slippery (one of those scary at the time, funny now things).  Lee and Sasha learning to ride their bikes WELL at the campground, and loving it.  The amazing pictures in the Ansel Adams gallery (Steve and I went alone to that, lol!!).  Watching the butterflies land on Megans toenail polish down by the river.  Jack loved the shuttle buses.  Sasha loved the history center, with the old cabins and homesteads.  Tony says his favorite part was camping, and Lee loved the tunnel tree in Mariposa Grove (got some great pics!).  Mariah says the waterfalls and rivers were here favorite part.
Then, Thursday, we left Yosemite.  Again, took it very slowly down the hill, so that we didn't overheat the brakes...or go sliding off an edge, lol.  Between that, and the slower speed on the freeways for towing, what mapquest said was a 4 hour drive to Bakersfield turned into 7-8 hours, but we made it here.  Not without a casualty, though.  Our bike rack on the back bumper overweighted the bumper and bent, so we lost a bike.  Have been in Bakersfield since, repairing the bumper and reinforcing it.  Should be leaving tomorrow, it seems.  But the kids are loving the pool, and today the park had a bounce house set up, so it's been fine.
Hopefully, I will have better internet most of the time now, so I can update better.  Sorry for the quick overview, but I've been by the pool all day with the kids, and need to start dinner now while they shower.  Keep it rubber side down, everyone!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Following Him.

For the last 2.5 years, we've been blessed with this amazing experience.  A farm, 10 acres of green to roam, to grow things, to enjoy.  We raised a steer, who is now in the freezer.  We raised chickens, for both meat and eggs.  Ducks, turkeys, guinea fowl.  Goats and sheep, and horses...because what kid doesn't want a horse?  And it's been awesome.  We've loved it.
So when I tell people we're moving, invariably they ask "Why?"  "If you love it, why leave?".  Well, because it's time.  God said so.  He made it very very clear that He has something different planned now, and I have to trust that His plans are greater than mine. 
Because I DID have plans.  3 months ago, we were planning where to put the fences, to keep the chickens out of the garden.  I was poring over seed catalogs.  And I was waiting anxiously for the VBS emails to start!  I do love VBS.  And then...it became glaringly obvious that Steves health was getting worse.  And one day...he said "I can't keep doing this".  And I'd been waiting for that for years, and seeing it coming faster and faster for the last months, and yet it was a shock in some ways.  Suddenly, this enormous change that we had always talked about as "someday" was "now".  "NOW"!! 
And so, we're following Him.  Clinging to the knowledge that He has gone before us, and laid His plans, and that He has something else awesome planned for us.  Because He always has.  2.5 years ago, when it became glaringly obvious that we were going to lose the house, I broke down in tears.  "Why, God?  We had it so good here!".  And He let me mourn, and blessed us with something even better.
And just over 7 years ago, we were told that Steve would probably never walk or work again, and DEFINITELY never have children again.  And not only did God let him walk and work again, but He has blessed us with 2 more adorable miracles since then!!
So I know that He will give us His best, which is all I can ever want.  And yet, I don't think He minds us mourning, either.  Because it's hard to let go of the future in my head, you know?  And yet, I'm not losing anything, because I'm winning so much.  I'm anxious to get started on this adventure He has for us, and see what awesome gifts He has planned!  I have already seen so many...a huge lessening of Steves stress.  His ability to really interact with the children again, since he's less stressed, and less exhausted.  Friends, old friends and new, coming to lift us and carry us and help us through. 
Walk with us through this journey, and we'll see what He has planned, and you can share in the rejoicing, ok?  And maybe some mourning along the way.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Crazy Farm on the move

So, the Crazy Farm is on the move.  For a long time, we've wanted to move out of CA, for various reasons, and now, it's time.  So many things, happening all at once.  So much to do, so many decisions to make, so many things to handle, all at once...
In many ways, I wish we'd done this years ago, and yet, I know, undoubtedly, it wasn't time until now, just as I know, almost as certainly, that it IS time now.  As surely as possible, I am certain that God has said "Go.  It's time.  Now.".  And so we go.  And yet...it's not possible to be 100% certain, ever, until later.  Until you look in hindsight, you will never know FOR SURE that you are making the right choice, following Him in what He says, and not just guessing.  So, it's scary.
And I feel a lot more sympathy for the Israelites, hearing God call them out of Egypt.  "Go, God?  Now?  I mean...I know we're slaves...I know it's not the Promised Land...but, we have food here, and homes, and we know people!  I have friends down the street, you know?  And the kids friends!  Well...maybe...are you SURE, God?  Let me think about it..."
It's huge.  Walking away from everything and everyone you know.  And it's hard.  And yet, He doesn't ask us to do the easy.  He doesn't ask us to go where we know, where we are safe, where we are comfortable.  He asks us to go where it's scary and hard and lonely, because in those places is where we learn to draw near to Him, to lean on Him, to have faith in Him.  When we have nothing else, that is when we cling to Him.
God, I want that.  I want to be yours, completely.  I want to draw so closely to you that I breathe You, not air.  So walk with me, through yet another hard thing, and be patient with my fearful heart as You remind me that you have never, will never, can never fail me, even as I fail you hourly.  Make me more like you, bit by glorious, painful, terrifying bit.
Thank you, Lord, that you are patient with me, even in these hard places.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Blogging from the cliff

When God leads you to a cliff, He will either teach you to fly, or catch you when you fall.

Sometimes, I feel like my whole life is one long series of cliffs.  Jump.  Jump.  Jump.  Where is that bottom?  When do I stop jumping, and rest for a while?  Tell me, Lord, don’t I trust you enough yet?

No.  No, I don’t.  There is no “enough”.  Until it is all, everything, complete.  And that is SO hard.  Am I the only one releasing things to Him, one grasping finger at a time, as He gently pulls them from my grip, promising He will take better care of everything than I can?  I can’t be.

So let me tell you what I’ve learned so far.  First…He WILL take better care of everything.  Trust Him.  He IS the beginning and the end of all, and He loves us more than we can even imagine.  Second…honestly, no matter what you do, that cliff is coming.  Trust Him, don’t trust Him…that cliff looms ahead, growing ever closer, no matter which way you turn, which way you look…it’s there.  And the only thing at the bottom of it is Him, waiting for you.  Waiting for all of us.  Jump.  Jump, spread your arms, and see what happens.  The flight is glorious, and the landing soft and sweet, every single time.