Friday, February 25, 2011

For my sister ;)

Well, my sister told me she found my blog and read all of my posts a few days ago. I apologized because I knew it has been close to a year since I last updated. My excuse? I haven't figured out how to write posts from my iPad. My laptop kicked the bucket last August and the most wonderful, gracious, generous people surprised me with an iPad! (I had no idea what one even was until mine came in the mail!) I am able to comment on other blogs, but not post on those that I am an author. I am sure there is some techie answer, but I just don't get it. Alas, I am using my husband's laptop to write for now!

It seems like I wrote those other posts a lifetime ago. The events that were at the forefront of our lives are just a distance memory (and an old blog post) now. When reading back over them, I can remember many of our conversations about a very difficult time for us. The uncertainty. I was pretty terrified and desperate and nervous. My husband was finishing up five years of seminary, after four years of undergrad, and we were going to be homeless and jobless. (Homeless in a loose sense here because we had family and friends that were offering to help us.) Gone were the days of dreaming up some perfect place, fantasizing about call night and everyone gasping when they heard where we would get to live. It was tough to swallow. Missing out on the main event of your seminary career, packing up everything and not knowing how long it would stay packed, saying goodbye to friends who had made the same uphill hike through seminary but who knew where they were going now. I suppose more than anything it was just disappointing. And quite humbling. Nothing says swallow your pride like moving back into your old room in your parents' basement. With your husband. And kids. We will be forever grateful to our family and friends for helping us through those months.
And now I am speaking of it all in the past. Months and months ago. With a smile on my face! It was yet another learning experience in patience (I think that's lesson #9,854 that I've gotten in patience) and wow was it worth the wait. God has blessed us with a fantastic call. I am still in awe when I think about it, and there has been plenty of time for the newness to wear off! I could have never hand picked or even been able to imagine a place so perfect for us. We are in rural mid Iowa, surrounded by rolling hills and hardworking, caring people. There are several LCMS churches within a 30 mile radius, even a few of my husband's classmates. The church is just across the street from our parsonage (though somehow the kids and I are usually late) and the church office is in our walkout basement. Most of the members farm and/or own livestock and when we first moved in, it seemed as though every member had a vegetable garden from which to share! The house is only ten years old and has plenty of space for us to be creative and spread out. I haven't even felt much cabin fever through the winter because there is always something to do and the rooms downstairs to wander through and plan. It has been a lifesaver to be able to send the kids up and down the stairs, alternating between playing in the basement rooms and the upstairs rooms. Needless to say, their keyboards and music CDs are kept in the basement playroom. We have big plans for a vegetable garden and hopefully strawberries and berry bushes.
The kids love it here, too. They are growing like crazy and Cade has finally stopped asking when we are moving next (5 times in his 4 years of life, poor kid!) and now says he hopes we can stay here for a long time! The church has a big Sunday school so they are becoming friends with lots of kids and Ava has several adults wrapped around her finger. Cade goes to Wednesday school for two hours a week and both kids come with us to Ladies Aid meetings so they are learning a lot about interacting with all different ages. The church was trying to find a pastor's secretary before we came and after just a couple months, I took the job. So far it is working out pretty well for me to work in the office a couple hours a few times each week. We certainly need that bit of extra money I make. Most days it feels like I am constantly busy but accomplish nothing. The downside to letting the kids play everywhere in a big house is the mess! Something always needs wiped up, picked up, swept up, washed up. Homeschooling is going well, though I do wish I was much more organized and scheduled. And I still need to figure out the specifics for laws in Iowa. I don't think we will ever strictly follow a curriculum, though I do believe they are nice guidelines. Perhaps Ava will benefit from one, but Cade is definitely a self motivated learner. If he wants to know it, he will read about it and ask questions! Anytime I have wanted to teach him something that he wasn't interested in, it has just resulted in me being frustrated and him wanting to go play something else. I don't want to dampen his excitement for knowledge in anyway, so I am more than willing to let most of his 'book learning' come from him sit in his bed at night for hours (and hours!!) reading books and educational magazines. Today he told me a bible story that he read last night I had never heard before! I have a feeling that this blog will be turning into an 'adventures in homeschooling' blog!