Well...we made a BIG trip and we drove the whole way there (with that on our back window). We dropped Little Bit off with the Grands (again, apart from them - trips like these would NOT happen!) She spent a little time with The Engineer's folks and a little time with my Mama. It was FANTASTIC! She had a blast and says she wants to go back!
It was a long trip. On the way there we broke it up - drove a small leg of it and left the rest for the next day. But on the way home...wow. We live a ways away from DC. We pulled out of DC at 6am our time and arrived home at 11:30pm that night. YIKES.
With all that time in the car, we finished...yes, we FINISHED the Little House series. We were all a bit sad. The last two books kept me grinning and choking up. In fact, the day before we left, Sister and I sat in the car while the oil was being changed and I read aloud to her and broke down into a mess of tears. I think I weirded out the guys working on the car. Then we grabbed some breakfast and over coffee, I did it again. The stories are so rich. They touched our hearts.
We've decided we need to make a trip to Missouri so we can see the house in which Laura and Almanzo lived and the furniture he built for her. I am just in love with that couple. With that story. With that time period - when showing your ears and ankles was inappropriate! Precious. It's been a wonderful adventure for our family! One I'm sure we'll repeat when Little Bit is older.
We practiced blowing bubbles...or trying to. And we began a new series: Anne of Green Gables!
And now the struggling little geranium on our sink is named Lissy (because Anne names hers Bonny) and our house is now affectionately referred to as "The Camelia Cottage" (because we do have a LOT of Camelia's in the front yard). And while we ate soup for lunch, Sister told me she would like to call our soup the "Shining Soup of Wonders" (Anne refers to a certain body of water as the Lake of Shining Waters) and that if she (Sister) could swim in it, she would "drink it up" while swimming.
We are welcoming Anne into our lives and there is such joy and delight as I watch Sister listen and then digest what she hears. Anne is "a wordy girl" as Sister said, but she is precious and we are quite smitten with her.
The dishwasher I picked is on back order. Go figure. I dread hand washing and I've instituted a MANDATORY one cup per person per day OR ELSE rule.
On the night I photographed the sink, I was so tired and just didn't have it in me...so they stayed there all night long. God's mercies are new every morning and my attitude was definitely improved that next day. I'm not sure what I am to learn during this period - for sure I have a new appreciation for that wonderful appliance called the dishwasher...I pray I learn it soon and well! -oh perhaps it's that God is glorified in the mundane...in the washing of dishes with a good attitude and a heart of thanks. Now to get my heart there...
And I wanted to share something...I wrote a very long post solely about this one thing...but it was more for just getting my guts out on paper...so I didn't publish it...but here goes.
I am quitting freelance.
For a long time my heart has been divided. I've been working part time from home since Sister arrived. When I started, I was only going to work until we'd paid our debts. Once we reached that milestone, I kept working. Largely, because the money was fun. I mean, we could do more and faster with me working.
And so the years have passed.
And over the course of the last few years, The Engineer has suggested I quit freelance.
But the fact is, and I'm terrified to share this, my ego is largely wrapped up in it. I want to be one of "those" moms who has it all together in terms of balancing being a wife and mom and designer. But the harsh reality is, I can't balance it. And when I am working, most of the time, I can almost audibly hear my responsibilities as a wife and mom screaming at me! And I can't silence them. And it drives me mad. And I lose my temper with my children. Often a chunk of what I make working is consumed with the expense of eating out because I wasn't available to cook. And what's left doesn't cover the emotional strain induced by my working.
The bottom line, I don't doubt at all, in fact, I am certain that God called me to work while we were getting out of our financial mess and He blessed us with some HUGE jobs - with clients who needed a LOT of work done. And that was a HUGE blessing! HUGE!
But now, He is and has been calling me to let that go.
I quit the stationery side of things a few months ago and thought that would bring the needed relief. It didn't.
I think I've been a bit like Jonah. I just didn't want to go where God was telling me to go. I thought by scaling back, I could suppress the undeniable call of God in this area. He wasn't fooled.
So I've made my "Finish Line" list. There are five "jobs" on it and I am working to bring each one to completion. There's a possibility I may be doing a few yearbooks come spring, but that's just because a few contracts had already been put out. I want to make good on my word, so if they sign and won't let me out, I'm good for it.
It's bittersweet. I can't deny the pull on my heart in this direction. I am oh, SO thankful for a supportive husband and we are so thankful God has provided in such a way that I am able to be home 100%.
So I'm babbling.
I hope to be finished by the end of the month. After all, this is a precious, sweet season of life. I want to look back with confidence that we invested our time wisely. And this, my friends, for us, is one step in investing wisely.
When I told Sister our plans, that I was working my way out, she jumped up and down screaming and threw her arms around my neck and shouted, "Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!"
Solomon said it well, "There is a time for everything."