Thursday, May 23, 2013


I feel I must add a few public comments to my last post.

First of all, my intention was not to complain or cry for help. I was simply trying to being realistic about what needs to happen in the next several weeks. Lots of people have moved across the continent and lived to tell about it. I'm just moving across the street.

I'm also very blessed to live among a community of believers who practice serving each other in very practical ways.  My husband and I are both from large families who also are willing to extend and stretch their own personal resources on our behalf. I feel gratefully humbled by the offers that have already been extended to us. If I do not have enough help in the next 2 months, it will honestly be my own fault. I'm a proud lady and asking for and receiving help isn't my strength.

On to a slightly different issue:

The gift of this house to us has been an incredible boost to my faith. Sharing about this gift with you and reading your responses has boosted me even further.

The past year it felt like my faith in God's goodness was being tested numerous times. It seemed that so many of my prayers were answered with either silence or a very unmistakable 'no'. I began to doubt God's good intentions toward me and my family. I felt at times that life must just be one big series of deferred hopes and learning to somehow find joy in laying down my desires. Even desires that I felt had been planted in my heart and mind from God himself.

I'm impatient. I'm short-sighted.

I know that God wanted to teach me and grow me through the laying down of desires.

But He also wanted me to know that He is good. Beyond my imagination.

And now He wants me receive His goodness in all its fullness. This new property is a part of that goodness. But there is so much more....

"Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders you have done. The things you planned for us no one can recount to you; were I to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare" -Psalm 40:5

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Reason

Here's the reason that I need the next 75 days

We're moving!!! We've talked and prayed about moving for the last year or two. We've looked at different properties around town and even nosed into a few country options. I've poured over real estate magazines and Amos has attended lots of auctions. Nothing seemed to be opening up in our price range that fit our wishes and needs. Besides, we really like it here in our neighborhood and the thought of leaving doesn't excite us.

It's been really neat to look back over the past few years and months and see how God has been orchestrating so many details for us. He is amazing.

The same weekend as our ordination, our elderly neighbor lady's son stopped by and told us that the family had decided that it was time for his mom to make a move to an assisted living facility. Before they put the house on the market he wanted to give us first chance at it. We had been very involved in caring for his mom in the past 9 years and had mentioned to the family that if they ever decide to sell the house, we would possibly have interest in buying it.

This house is just across the street from where we currently live. The main drawing factor for us is the big, beautiful back yard. Not to mention, no adjustments to a new neighborhood.

Taken from the back of the house, looking into the back yard. The white post on the far left marks the property line. The hedge marks our property line on the opposite side. The woods border the backside of our lot.  It's a narrow but deep lot. .


Taken from the back yard, looking towards the house.

 This property is really rather unique for a city lot, making it a perfect fit for us. It seems almost too good to be true. We love living in town but as the family grows we've been dreaming of more space for play and work.

What fun.....trees to climb!!!!

I can't say how much I love to see these guys climbing in a tree, especially considering the fact that there is no such thing as a tree to climb in our current yard.

Christopher named this limb "Jordan". It's his imaginary horse.

The one side of this property is bordered by a city park, which is a wooded nature area with a ravine, small stream and trails.  As our children get older it will be almost like an extended playground for them. Of course there is always caution that needs to be exercised in public areas that are secluded.

The house itself  really isn't much of an upgrade for us. It's very comparable to what we're living in now as far as size goes. We feel like there are some good options for adding living space in the future as it is needed.

So. A new house is exciting. But it means lots of work. We are planning to repaint the entire house and either put in new flooring or refinish the existing hardwood. 

Currently were in the shopping and making decisions stage.

In the next week or two comes the hard labor.

Meanwhile, I have a houseful of possessions to deal or throw or sell???!!!???

And we need to get this house in good shape for the buyers. Yup, it's already sold. God is amazing. And we're going to be getting some really amazing new neighbors!!!!

Oh. And meanwhile, we have two lawns to keep looking good.

And we're the family that can hardly find an evening to spend at home to do lawn care.

And did I mention.............that I'm pregnant and ummmm. Slow and bulky and too often grouchy.....

 It really is a fortunate thing that I still have 75 days.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

A Letter from Mrs. Thomas

This is a repost with a few edits from 3 years ago when I was 'very great with child'. 

Dear Miss Sleek, Skinny, Pink Camaro,

Good afternoon! I would like to begin this letter by acknowledging the fact that I have felt very honored to be noticed by  you. I realize that I am much bulkier,  a lot more clumsy, and over all, less attractive than  you and  that I am really quite unworthy of your time and attention.  Thank you for not ignoring me all together. Thank you for recognizing me as a fellow comrade. Again. I am honored that you took the time and energy to interact with me in the recent past.

I feel inclined though, at this time to share with you some proper etiquette for relating to folks like myself. Some of the comments that you have made in the past several weeks/months seem to be to be rather thoughtless and even rude at times. I do not doubt your intentions. Really. I believe that the comments have been made out of sincerity mixed with naivety. For this reason I would like to share with you a few tips on what to say or what not to say should you encounter another Mrs. Thomas in the near future. Perhaps this letter will give you some sound advice for processing the advice and comments that other Pink Camaros may throw your way if you should ever find yourself in my current state of being.

To begin with, I wonder if it has ever entered your mind that I do get a fairly decent view of myself at least several times daily as I encounter the mirrors through out my home. I go to great measures to avoid the full length mirrors of this world, but I have found it impossible to stay away from them completely. I mean, try walking into a grocery store. Like it or not, those shiny, sparkling doors hold back no secrets to each and every person that dares to walk through them. All that to say, I am acutely aware of how large I am without you telling me that I look huge.

I would also like to assure you that I do indeed know the exact date of the expected arrival of my baby. It would be just fine with me if you would keep that doubtful look to yourself when I tell you that I have x number of weeks left yet until my due date. Thanks for telling me that I look like I should have had my baby yesterday and that you certainly hope I will have it by tomorrow...even though my due date is still 3 weeks away.

I also find myself wondering how exactly it is that you think you know when my baby has dropped. I tend to believe that I am much more in tune with the position of my baby than what you are. After all, I am the one that has been carrying it for the last 9 + months. It seems really absurd for me to argue with you about whether or not my baby has dropped, especially when I know that I am right. Anyway, thanks for letting me know that I am waddling.

When you ask me if I am carrying twins and I tell you that I am not, once again, it would be more polite for you to believe me than to cast looks of disbelief my way. You would do well to remember that this is my 5th pregnancy. Aside from the fact that women do just tend to get bigger and more stretched out with each baby, I also likely know better than you what it feels like to have a baby growing inside of me by now. I can feel more of my baby's body parts than what I actually wish to feel at times and it is quite obvious to me that there are not multiple baby parts floating around inside of me. Thanks for telling me that you think you would only be half my size if you were me.

I really wondered where you brain was at the other day when you pulled up along the curb, rolled down the window and said, "No baby yet??!!" Especially taking into consideration the fact that I was standing there in broad day light. I can't imagine that you were unable to see the trees growing on my Mount Everest. I hope, I mean, I really hope that after my baby is born that I will be sporting at least a more deflated version of Mount Everest. My advice is simply this: look before you speak. And even better yet, think one moment before you speak.

I also wonder if you think that it is easy for me to forget how uncomfortable I feel. It is a pretty tough thing to get off my mind at this point. It just follows me around everywhere. When you tell me that I look just confirms to me that I am not doing a very good job of hiding my  aches and pains and emotional instability.

I really hope that you are not feeling too reprimanded at this point of this letter. I would like to again thank you for being a part of my life. The scenarios that I have referenced here in this letter have often brought humor into my days. Laughter is something that I certainly have a lack of right thanks for making me laugh.

This may be hard for you to believe, but at one time in history, I too was a sleek, skinny Camaro. I know that I made many thoughtless comments to others simply out of not knowing what to say when I wanted to show that I really did care. I trust that this letter will aid in future uncomfortable situations. 

I hope to someday soon join you in the fast lane of life again. I hope that my sluggish, swollen brain will regain some speed and wit so that we interact in the fun ways that we used to...instead of you making all the comments and it taking me a week or two to come back with something even half way witty. And even more, I can't wait for the day when you're a Mrs. Thomas and I get to give you all kinds of advice and encouragement.

Mrs. Thomas the Tank Engine

p.s. This letter is not written to any one person in is simply  a compilation of some of the conversations that I have encountered with various people throughout my past 5 pregnancies. There are more stories, to be sure, but I think this is enough for one day.

*Please note, I do indeed have more than 3 weeks left until my due date this time. However, I believe that the discomforts of pregnancy affect me earlier with each child. I told my husband just recently that I feel like I should be in my last 3 weeks. Unfortunately, I have 77 days to go yet. Or, actually fortunately for you'll find out later.