Thursday, January 17, 2013


Four years ago, my husband and I embarked on a new journey. We bought some land. It was a complete exercise in trust on my part. At the time, I had graduated college and was on month five of my job search. My husband and I were getting antsy, and I had just been through a discouraging, and misleading experience with a temp agency. I came home feeling defeated and depressed, and jumped back into searching. My husband went across the street, and bought a newspaper to help me search. Instead, what he found was land for sale. I was skeptical, because well, I had no job. He was excited, and determined that he’d get a second job if that’s what it took. I decided to trust my husband, and trust God to lead him in the right direction. What resulted was signing a contract to buy some land, and getting a job offer in the same week.

Although we thought the land would mostly just sit there for a couple years until we had the money to do something with it, God had other plans. The times when we have future plans, and God speeds them up have been a recurring theme in our marriage. So, a year later, we were moving into a camper on our land and starting construction on a house. Now here we are, in the process of selling it. We closed this afternoon. It’s been a great place. It’s been stressful, and cramped, definitely more crowded than we intended, but it’s been home. There are definitely things I’m going to miss, like…

the outside space
the stars
the land
lots of trees to block the wind
room to shoot
knowing we built everything all on our own
knowing it’s our first place
house in perfect shape

And, there are things I won’t miss…

the drive time
commuting on a dangerous highway, people don’t pay attention
having only one bedroom
the cost of gas
not having a dishwasher
limited inside space
having everything crammed into one small space
heat & air window unit
being too far from the rest of civilization
having the washer & dryer in the same room as everything else
my car covered in dirt at all times

What I do know is that it is the most bittersweet feeling I’ve ever known.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Cow pajamas, fairy wings, and a makeshift microphone: The Life of a Toddler

You know what I love about having a toddler? Most everything. The kid is an absolute joy. I hate how fast my girl is growing up, but I love this age so much. I love seeing her personality evolve, and her imagination blossom. I love seeing her get excited about things. I love hearing her laugh and hearing her sing. And, I love the nightly dance parties she always starts.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

To Write

I’m still working on my list of goals for the year. I don’t think I want to start over with my list from last year, although I do think there will be some recurring themes. I’m not coming up with a certain number, and I’m giving myself some time to really think about what those goals will be. If it takes me until mid-February to nail them down, I’m okay with that. I want to make them very intentional. I do have the list started, though.
I’m going to be very honest, here. Insecurity is a very big struggle for me. I constantly feel like I’m not good enough. I think I’m not good at anything, or for anything. I struggle with it at home too, but not nearly as much. I find myself wondering, in the back of my head, if my husband thinks I’m stupid. The truth is, though, that thought in itself is stupid. That man is my strongest supporter, and my greatest encourager. I have no reason and no right ever to doubt his view of me. In fact, if I could see myself more like he does, I’d be much better off. In general, though, it’s a very big problem for me. Answering the question “what are you good at?” is a very big chore for me, because my first reaction is to say “nothing.” That’s not fair, though, and it isn’t true. God made me, and He made me just like He needed me to be. Absolutely, I’m weak on my own, and I need Him. And, that’s the way it’s supposed to be, so that He can be glorified and I can’t take all the credit. That doesn’t mean I’m worthless, though. And, it doesn’t mean He didn’t give every single one of us strengths and talents.
A week or so ago, my husband and I randomly started playing Truth or Dare. Don’t ask me why. That game went way differently than it ever did on the high school band bus, let me tell you. With dares like, “I dare you to take me out for Asian the next time we go out,” it quickly turned to simply Truth. So, in the midst of all that, or maybe inspired by that, I asked him what he thought to be my greatest talent. His answer was writing. That answer keeps coming to mind as I think of my goals for the next year. So, the first thing I’m putting on my list is to write more.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Year Ahead

I had such high hopes for 2012.  I started the year looking ahead, anxious for what it might bring.  I’m somewhat hesitant to do that this year.  I had a good first couple of weeks.  I set goals, I came up with a plan of action, I looked forward to big family events, and I set out to embark on the year.  Things were looking great.  And then, by the end of January, things started falling apart.  We had a couple losses in the family, one near loss, and one unexpected expense after another.  The whole year just felt like we couldn’t catch a break.  If not for the births of two new, healthy nieces, our year would’ve seemed pretty bleak. 
This week, as I thought about the last year, I looked back at my post outlining my goals for 2012.  It was only then that it hit me.  I bombed big time.  Out of thirteen goals, I met one.  I wanted to take a first step.  My husband pointed out last night that selling our house could count as that first step.  Otherwise, I would’ve said that I accomplished nothing.  I will say that I also made a list of things I wanted to do before my birthday, and that list is getting much shorter.   They were much simpler, more concrete goals, though.  The kind that you can do one at a time, and check them off as you go.  Not the kind that requires dedication of an extended period of time. 
I haven’t quite decided what to do with this year.  I don’t know if I should just recommit to my goals from last year, or if I should start a new list.  I’ve heard of people choosing one word to be their theme for the year.  I never really considered doing that, mostly because I didn’t think I’d be able to come up with one.  This year, though, I know exactly what that one word will be for my husband and me:
a : assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something
   b : one in which confidence is placed
a : dependence on something future orcontingent : hope

As I look ahead to the new year, I see a lot of unknowns.  I know it will be a year of change.  Only time will tell how much, and what kinds.  Last year, we put our house up for sale, because we felt like it was time.  This year begins with selling our house.  We are set to close on January 17.  At this point, we don’t know where we’ll live.  We are choosing to trust God with everything this year might bring, because He knows best.  We are choosing to trust Him to guide us and sustain us. 

Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6