Sunday, March 16, 2014

I Had a Good Reason

for not writing for nearly a year.  A week after I last wrote something here, my husband and I started talking seriously about doing something really, really big.  There was so much to talk about and consider, and at the same time I was homeschooling three kids with a baby on my hip (constantly) and trying to keep up with our fun but very high-maintenance house and land.  So every night I fell into bed exhausted physically and even more so mentally, and so now here I am, nearly a year later, finally ready to say hi and reveal what we've been up to!  (Thank you to those of you who've left comments or emailed to check on me!)

In a nutshell, after much prayer and many, many months of taking long walks together down our beautiful country lanes talking it over, my husband and I decided to take a gigantic leap of faith:  Pace gave up his position at our church, so that we could move to North Idaho to start a church on our own.  We'd been at our church and in Texas over 15 years; all my friends and most of my closest family lived there, and Pace was in a very good, very secure position.  It was so hard to consider the reality of stepping back from all of that, in order to take on something so fragile and uncertain.  

This is us about when we started considering our big move, April 2013
But he went ahead and stepped down once God tapped him on the shoulder, and then we spent the next several months holding our breath and hoping our house would sell.  In a move only God could orchestrate, the day after New Year's we got three offers at once, and were able to sell for full price--this, after sitting on the market for over 6 months without a second showing!!  I hated to turn loose of our wonderful house, but in reality it had become so much work the last couple years, and with Pace so busy and everything I was juggling, the burden outwore the blessing for me.  I'm so glad, because it was hard enough to tell it goodbye.

We pulled out of Texas in late February, after hugging too many friends and family goodbye, and my poor kids' hearts were absolutely broken.  But we knew this is the path God has been leading us on, and He has soothed sad hearts so much in the last few weeks.  My sister and her family moved to the same town we're in (Coeur d'Alene) three years ago, and they and their friends helped us move in, fed us, invited us over, gave us snow clothes, and some are stepping up to start our church with us.  We miss our Texas relationships, but Facetime and letter-writing weekly have helped some. (Although I can't even express how much I miss my dear Bridget.  I just try to avoid thinking about it for now.)  It has also helped that our first week here, we got about 16 inches of snow! Talk about a fun distraction!  The kids played, sledded, built snow forts, threw snowballs, and spent more time outside in 25 degrees than I could believe.


This is one of the views of our little city--so pretty!!

Now we're settled in mostly, and it is starting to feel like home in a lot of ways.  I still can't get over the fact that I've finally moved back to the mountains, after three decades away, and that pine trees surround us everywhere!  It is beautiful here, and there are these little coffee drive-thru stands on nearly every major corner, and when the sun shines I think I've moved to paradise!  We had our first vision gathering this week, with the people who've already stood up to help us start, and I am excited to see months (years, really--this has been on Pace's heart for so long) of dreaming and praying and hoping start to materialize.

All that, and my baby is nearly a year and a half old (HOW???) and is so wonderful, and Caiden will become a teenager this summer (HOW???), and our homeschooling continues on, changing as my kids grow but still one of my absolutely favorite things about being the mom.  I grew my hair out long and then cut a bunch off and want to grow it out again.  I turned 38 and can't figure out how my age continues to get older, when I still feel like I'm barely older than a teenager, and Pace turned 40 and doesn't even hide his dismay, which makes me laugh!  Life has changed radically for us in the last year.  It makes me wonder what life will look like in another year, if I wait that long to write again.  I can't imagine!  But God has held us so faithfully these last 11 months, and I'm confident in Him.  He is good, so good.  xxoo

(If you're wanting to keep up with us as a church plant, you can find us on Facebook & Instagram:  One Place Church.  We also have a newly-developed website, www.oneplacechurch.com)

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Baking, Going, Doing, Sewing













 









     

                                       



The days are flying by, one calendar page after another just whirling up into the sky, gone.  I don't know how it is that time is so changeable:  eternally slow sometimes, moving at the speed of light others.  I looked at my baby girl the other day and realized she'll be six months next week, and that babyhood is so darn fleeting.  I just want to hold onto these days a little longer.

We've been busy, but in a nice, non-overwhelming way.  Spring has sprung, so everybody is outside a lot more, and the house seems to be a place where we all come back to flop ourselves down in quiet spots to read or play Legos or knit in the afternoons.  But during the day, we're out and about, and the sun is shining all day long, and I remember how much I love spring.

Today we're getting ready for friends to come over after church tomorrow, so Addie and I are baking this morning.  I love, love, love to bake.  But I also have absolutely no self-control when it comes to baked goods, so I try not to do it unless absolutely necessary.  It's a delicate dance.  I want to be the mom who makes batches of chocolate chip cookies a couple times a week for her kids, but I can't.  Because my kids would grow up and say, "No, I don't remember Mom making us cookies at all."  And that's because I would have eaten every single one before the kids got to them.  So instead I bake when I know I have to share.  It's safer that way.   :)

I finished Sarah's Heartwarmer shawl and blocked it, and only have to attach the buttons.  It's getting warm here, but the tricky thing about living in Texas is that in the summer, it's blazing hot outside but absolutely frigid inside everywhere you go.  We were in Colorado on vacation a couple years ago and went inside a ski shop to look for sunscreen, and it was probably only about 80 degrees outside, but the shop had no A/C.  It felt like 120 degrees inside, and my native-born Texan kids were flabbergasted.  We forgot about the sunscreen and got out of there.  We can't handle heat.  Ironic, no? But that means I can knit warmish things for my baby, who'll freeze indoors otherwise.  Layers in summer.  It's the only way..

I cast on for her baby shorts the other day while waiting for Addie at ballet.  My mom kept the other three, and I sat in my car outside the dance studio with Pandora on, knitting in delirious happiness for an entire hour.  It's amazing how much you relish the absence of talking when you have kids.  I think her shorts are going to be adorable.  They're a light sage green, and they'll be perfect paired with a number of peasant blouses I bought fabric for.  She's nowhere near crawling yet, so I have hopes they won't get too floor-stained.

I hear chickens crowing outside, and the guinea is shouting her head off.  Such an alarmist.  I'm off to refill my coffee mug and track down something quick for breakfast so I can bake with Addie without succumbing to temptation.  We/ll see how that goes.  Munch, munch.



Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Monday, Monday


















I love Mondays.  I wake up happy every time I realize it's Monday*.  It's Pace's day off, so that's an obvious bonus, but for some reason we never seem to have any obligations on Mondays, and staying home and puttering about is my favorite thing on earth.  (I type that and think of Dorcas Lane on Larkrise to Candleford--everything was her absolute favorite, and I completely get that.)

I've been getting my sewing/knitting/cooking mojo back.  It always takes me about six months after having a baby to get back in the swing of things.  The last few days I feel like I'm coming back to myself.  I remember when Sarah was a few days old and I was sitting up in bed feeding her at some late hour, wanting to cry because I didn't think I'd ever again be able to go to bed and just sit up and read a book.  Have normal things on my nightstand instead of nose suckers and wet wipes and lanolin.  But lo and behold!  I've read a few actual books since then and have finished an actual knitting project and sewn an actual outfit for my darling girl (photos coming)!  And now I feel like myself again.

We cleaned the entire house yesterday to get ready for a party last night.  The kids wrote out lists and followed them, except for Grayson who is blessed with amazing creativity, and that doesn't generally translate to terrific focus.  He walked around with the kitchen timer clipped to his pants (his idea) to remind him he was supposed to be doing something.  By afternoon the entire house was clean--a first in six months, I'm convinced--and we had friends over for a very loud, very fun dinner and The Voice viewing.  (Guy who sang the Whitney Houston song?  Uh-mazing!!)

Now I've woken up to a very clean house with very few things on my plate today.  That NEVER happens, and I'm giddy with excitement!  I have a bunny to finish before Easter, and I cast on adorable baby pants for an adorable baby girl with adorable baby curls (J'adore!), so I have plenty to keep me happy while staying inside and staying warm today.  Texas weather is confused this week, and it's freezing here!!  I love it.

My entire goal today is to keep the kids (and me; I'm a serious piler) from getting anything messy or dirty just for one whole day.  It's doubtful, but I'm hopeful.  So even though it's Tuesday, I'm happy as a clam.

*I do know today is Tuesday, which is not as nice as Monday, but these photos were from yesterday.

p.s.  Anybody else have a dog with just one goopy eye?  It's chronically this way; any ideas?

Saturday, March 23, 2013

At the Lake



















We spent a couple days at the lake this week with my parents.  We had perfect weather, so the kids spent most of the time outside on bikes or in the kayak or fishing.  Grayson caught a lizard and a frog that seemed to actually like being held, so he was in heaven.  I love days at the lake:   the kids play all day long, we go out for ice cream and eat lunch at gas station grills, take long, meandering drives in the country, and sit on the boat dock, listening to the mourning doves and watching the water.  (There is also the requisite craziness of four kids staying at the house of people who no longer have little kids.  I told Grayson at least five times to stop opening every cabinet and drawer and snitching goodies like batteries, keys, and coins.)

Today we're home again and I woke up to a dark thunderstormy morning.  I should've stayed under the warm covers, but the lure of coffee and writing by candlelight was too strong.  I love meeting the day before it's light and all the kids are up and everything already feels overwhelming.  It's ironic:  I, chronically easily overwhelmed, live with four kids and a million animals and constant mess and noise.  If I don't wake up before everybody else, I have to fight the urge all day to run away.

Not today, though.  Dark mornings and hot coffee and sleepy kids from our trip make for a nice, nice morning.  I think I'll go make some muffins.  Hello, weekend.