Sunday, August 30, 2009

Exploring Town

All our possessions are moved and many boxes are unpacked and the items put away. David is enrolled in high school and has begun attending his new school. Rich has gone back to work and life is beginning to get back to some sense of order. Of course, I still haven’t found some of our everyday possessions, so we are eating off our good china.

Our new favorite butcher shop
With all the changes I have been able to discover some gems around town. I saw a little locally owned butcher shop and had to laugh at the name, “Two Fat Butchers.” The name got my interest, but the price, quality, and selection got my business. David was with me for my first visit and he was fascinated by watching the butcher hack up a turkey. He had lots of questions and the butcher patiently answered them all. I spent less than I would have at the grocery store and got better quality. We are eating well.

David watches the turkey’s demise
We also live close enough to a local Mexican restaurant that we are able to walk to. When the subject turns to restaurants the first one named by everyone is Jalisco and we found this out one of our first mornings in our new home. Between 10:30 and 11:00 am we can smell the wonderful aroma wafting up the hill to our home. Every Thursday their entire lunch menu is on sale for $4.99 and with the amount of food they give you it’s enough for 2 to 3 meals. So the last two weeks I didn’t have to make dinner on Thursday night.
My first lunch at Jalisco
I also took David on a walk to the park and found a garden center that has a fruit and vegetable store. We have had some wonderful corn and potatoes. As you can tell we are not spending a lot at the grocery store.

When I can find the walls behind all the boxes I will give you a tour of our new home.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Thunderstorms of Blessings

Throughout the spring and summer we have felt like we were driving in a blinding, windy thunderstorm. The kind where you slow your car down because you can’t see past a few feet in front of you and the wind tosses the car from side to side.

This week we are in another thunderstorm, only this one appears to be a lovely sunny, summertime storm. The kind where you can still see the sun shining through the clouds and it just makes you want to dance in the rain.

Since we are moving to a home with brand new appliances we will no longer need our washer and dryer (which are several years old). I don’t like to waste and storing them wlll only deteriorate them until they can’t be used by anyone. So we asked our current landlord if the new tenants would need them and were told, “no, they have their own.” So I gave Rich the number to call a used appliance store to see about selling them for a few dollars and getting them to pick them up. He received no answer. We then talked about the homeless shelter and wondered if they could use them as a donation. They were very interested and will send a truck out for them this week. I love that win-win!

Later in the evening I went to reserve the truck we will need for Saturday and found that it was half the price for us to rent it than it would have been last month. It’s the same size truck and from the same company but since it is the middle of the month and they are running a promotion we are getting a great deal.

Rich’s parents also talked to a pastor in the town we are moving to and they are going to arrange for men at the church to be at our new home and help unload the truck. This allows us to ask our friends here to just help us load the truck.

We are also having one last meal here tomorrow night with our kids.

Also, thank you all for your continued prayers.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Trust and Obey

Last night one of the evening hymns was “Trust and Obey.” Listening to the words of this hymn brought tears to my eyes as I thought over the last several months of our lives. It has truly been a journey of trusting and leaning on God. Sometimes it was a hit and miss on whether we were obeying since we were sometimes unsure of the direction God wanted us to go.

As of my last post we were looking to make a cute little cottage our new home. God had other plans. The owners’ neice decided she wanted it, so we had to continue looking. We found a beautiful, secluded bungalow. We waited as three siblings decided which offer they would take. Two and a half weeks later we found it wasn’t us. We then found and even more beautiful home in the mountains, but after being on the market for 6 days there were five other applications ahead of us, so we lost another home. Remember, we live three hours away from where we will be living, so the almost weekly trips to find homes has been taking its toll. When we decided to still put a bid in on the mountain home (the one with five other bids already pending), we looked at other homes. Just that morning (last Friday) a 1940 farmhouse had been put on the market. No sign was even up in the yard. The house had just been renovated and had a dishwasher!!

We had planned to purchase a home, but because there was less than two weeks before we must be out, we went for a lease and applied for the mountain home and the farmhouse. Both homes were hoping to sell after the lease is up so that was a plus for us.

Our next step was to commit to God that whichever house was offered, if any, we would accept. Both houses are beautiful and each had their own advantages (and dishwashers). We didn’t expect an answer until today or tomorrow, but our agony ended on Saturday night.

Home, Sweet Home
Our new home is the 1940 farmhouse. It has the original wood floors and the house retains the original charm, but the bathrooms have just been redone—with a master bathroom soaking tub and the kitchen has just been renovated with all new cabinets and apliances—did I mention there’s a dishwasher?

We will sign the papers on Thursday morning and move on Saturday. That gives us a few days in case we have a bit more to do in our current home.

During this time I woke up one morning feeling ready to dive into packing. David had been waking up before 6am each morning and he was sleeping well. But within an hour I was having some severe back pains. At one point I thought I would pass out and knew it was time to tell Rich to wake up David and take me to the doctor’s. As the pain moved from high in my back to lower in my front I thought it sounded like a kidney stone. I had never had one, but, yep, that was it.

After major pain killers I was sent to the hospital for more tests. It finally passed that night but I remained loopy the rest of the day. For the next several days nothing got done as I was exhausted. A week later the doctor had me come in for more tests and found that my iron level was half what it should be—no wonder I have felt drained by early afternoon. Some tests to find out the reason for low iron have resulted in no answers, so after the move I will need to have more tests done. But, they have ruled out some serious causes.

We have also had a harder time with David due to all the unexpected change of daily plans. When he began to think of a house as our new home we would have to tell him we weren’t sure and this would upset him. He doesn’t do well with change and was trying to wrap his mind around the changes. We also wanted to get into a house in enough time so his summer wasn’t totally wasted. School starts a week and a half after our move.

Rich’s parents came to visit yesterday and were very thoughtful and understanding about the upheaval in our home right now. They just took us out to lunch and decided not to spend the night.

This has also been a time when new friendships have been forged and, unfortunely, some other friendships have been severed. It’s times like these when you find out who your real friends are.

It had been a real time of testing. As we have gone through these trials I think of Job and realize how blessed we truly are. This has been a time when David has seen us rely on God’s timing and provision. Even last night when he fell off his bike and gashed the same knee he messed up in March he asked me “what is God trying to teach me?”

So thank you for all your prayers and please continue to remember us over the next week. There is much to do and little time, but we are excited about the changes.