Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Every Other Year Blogger...

Hesitation to even write this today washed over me as I looked at the page, and didn't like what looked back.

I want to change the back ground.

That signature still?? What?!

But blogging is like exercise. Forget that you haven't done it in weeks... Months.


But TODAY is a new day. START (again!) TODAY!

And today of all days is a crazy place to start because seriously. I am transitioning back to the states in 13 days. It wouldn't be absurd to have the countdown in hours at this point, its THAT CLOSE!

But today is the day to start. Again.

This is the FIRST  MOVE in our entire married life that didn't involve packing up everything we own, and deciding what comes with us directly to whatever temporary place we will live, what goes into storage somewhere; a barn, a rental space, my moms garage. And what just gets pitched.


We were married in October, 1989.

Our first home was in the city of Rochester, and Dan moved in the month of our wedding, and I moved in after. Good Christian girl.

We sold that house in October, 1999. Exactly 10 years later. We lost our shirts on that sale. Housing in the City of Rochester consistently plummeted after we bought in 1989, and reached bottom in... yes... 1999.

So with over $14,000 debt, we moved into my parents basement.

One bedroom, not-even-a-kitchen, basement apartment.

Four Children. Ages 7, 5, 3, and 1. INSANE.

And a lot of our stuff went to a barn in Hilton. and a lot went to the garage. And even more went to the trash.

After 16 months, which was supposed to be 6 months, and felt like 12 years, we moved into (what we would think) was our "Forever Fixer-Upper Dream Home".

Dream Street!
Dream Layout!
Dream Town!
Dream Potential!

And IT WAS!!

Until it wasn't.

Enter a one time missions trip. Enter God. Enter Original Dreams emptied out into boxes and dumpsters and storage units, and New Dreams being planted as tiny seeds in *slightly unready* soil.

The bulk of this blog til this point has been the "fill in the gap" until 2013. But to the original point of this post, if there was a point...

We sold the Dream House. With now 5 children. Ages 14, 12, 10, 8 and 3.

From June 2006 until June 2007 we moved FIVE TIMES.

1. Farmhouse in Hilton to live with dear friends.
2. Basement apartment to live under dear friends.
3. City house renting from a former boss, that we nearly burned down. Another story for another day.
4. Back to the farmhouse, but setup in our pop-up camper.
5. Into a rental back in our Dream Town. Just a few miles away from Dream House.

Needless to say, all our "stuff" was never with us during this time! Our kids box of "MUST HAVE'S" was whittled from a large toter, to a medium packing box, to a shoe box. And not one of those Big-
Man's Workboot Boxes". A Child's Shoe box.

So many Traveling Pictures! 

After Christmas, 2010, we came to the conclusion that renting a house for nearly $1,000/month that
we were barely living in because of deputation, really made no sense. So... January 2011, in one of the Coldest Times I Can Remember, we once again divvied up everything into "Keep-Store-Pitch" and moved out of that house.

Offices in Unusual Places

We traveled quite extensively for deputation and lived in a camper part time, and when we weren't traveling, we went back to my parents basement apartment.
The Boys Part of the Living room

Again with four kids. Ages 15, 13, 11, and 6.

Our oldest lived on campus in College. She hasn't lived with us since she was 17. Even typing that brings tears to my eyes, because THAT certainly wasn't on my list of dreams.

From there, we transitioned back and forth from camper to the apartment, camper to the apartment. Until Finally, in March, 2013, we moved to Zambia!
NYC 10 Year Anniversary of 9/11

The Apartment during the Pitch/Pack/Purge 
When we first arrived in Zambia, we lived in a two bedroom cottage on the property of our missionary partners. We lived there for 2 months, with three children. Ages 17, 15 and 10. So much stuff in trunks with us, and most everything else in a shipping container traveling over the Ocean Blue. 
We then got our own place to rent in Zambia, and lived there for 19 months. We then came stateside for our daughters wedding, and packed up that entire house, knowing we DIDNT want to continue renting from that Landlord. Again... another post. Someday. Maybe!

All our goods were once again divvied. Take to US-Storage Unit-Pitch/Giveaway.

While in the states for the wedding, we first lived with our three oldest children who THANKFULLY had a wonderful house that was loaned to them by an Extremely Generous Family. We were there from January until July, 2015.

We had originally planned to return to Zambia in July, because the wedding was in April. But our next two children made plans for their weddings as well!!

So... Back to the hunt for a place to Live, and a precious girl LITERALLY moved out of her house and went back to live with her parents, and let us live in her home until October, 2015. What A GIFT!!

We returned to Zambia in October, 2015, and lived in another missionaries home until mid-December, 2015.

In December, the house that our missionary partners were leaving, (remember the cottage we lived in before? YEs, THAT place!)  and we moved into that place... but the MAIN house this time!


Here I am... 13 days from Leaving on a Jetplane to go stateside, and I am marveling that this is the FIRST TIME I will travel, and have all my "Stuff" still in one place, with plans to return to it! I have a strange sense of surreal about it all. Not having to pitch, parcel, pack, and plan every little detail is leaving me a tad bit perplexed.

Did anyone count all those moves? I lost track somewhere around the 5-times-in-one-year part.

Alas, we are sort of in the precipice of another.

After typing all of this, there are s many emotions tied to each of these memories. Some of them are still kind of raw and a bit tender. Truly Following God is an adventure, and I would highly Recommend EVERYONE do it! But that doesn't mean it is easy. And it certainly isn't without challenges, pain and some really difficult times. But It is all Worth it!

And Maybe I can blog the next stage of this journey of my life!
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