Wednesday, December 31, 2014

{No Exact Title}

I have no exact title yet.

Mainly because for the last two and a half years, {I've had no words}.

But recently, I've been feeling a slight tug on my heart to find them.....


So just in brief--- since my last post on August 1, 2012.....


The biggest lesson I've learned is that {moving isn't for weenies}.

I can also say with certainty that {sometimes a lot of times, life doesn't make sense life is bonkers}.

and through it all, we are called to seek Him {Wholeheartedly}.

{Praise God for all His blessings!!!}.

{Moving isn't for weenies}

Haha and I am one.
A big, fat weenie.
Exploding with selfishness
when put over the campfire.

Man, I am not proud.
And strangely, I DID KNOW
I DID UNDERSTAND GOING IN...
this will be hard.
I must put my big girl panties on.

But I quickly traded the big girl panties
for a pacifier and dirty diapers.
Ugh. Again, I am not proud.
Wish I could have passed the test
with flying colors.
Wish I could have integrated into
this small town
like a red ant on a populated dirt hill

But William Wordsworth's sonnet keeps ringing in my ears:
"The World is Too Much With [Me]"
I felt and sometimes still feel every judging eye upon me.
I heard and sometimes still hear a loud cacophony of doubt in my own heart.
I mourned and sometimes still mourn the widening distance of old friendships.
Yes, the World is Too Much with me.
And to quote Taylor Swift, I can't shake it off.

It's funny, two different people whom I told I was moving,
had reactions that replay like a DVR in my mind....

These were people who had experienced moving
and who didn't seem like big, fat weenies to me,
(Unpause)
..when I told them I was moving, they both
whispered, in hushed and horrified tones,
like hearing the news of an early and unexpected death "oh, I'm soo sorry."
One's eyes grew large and she shook her head slowly, pityingly...
(Pause)
I thought IT CAN'T BE THAT BAD.

Well, it was. It was!
And that's no reflection on the state of Illinois!
Or the southern region in which we reside.
Or the tiny town in which we settled.
It's just that this place wasn't home.
And it's missing the comforts of home.
And the friends of home.
And the restaurants of home.
And the boutiques of home.
Now we're really getting to what matters.  The shopping.
Ha.  Kidding not kidding.  Shopping matters.
Big fat weenies feel better after going shopping. Right?

Moving isn't for weenies.  I will preach it to the mountains.
It's true, through and through.
But it doesn't mean we weren't SUPPOSED to move
or that I am destined to be a weenie all my wiener long life.

Or that I wouldn't move with my family here to this place all over again.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

{I've had no words}

There have not been many times in my middle-aged life I've been without them.

But something about this life event (moving) took a toll on me and my loquaciousness.

I

just

have

had

nothing

to

offer.

The thought of blogging didn't even enter my mind.  Truth be told....I didn't even know what to say to my sister, much less how to express my words on a public blog.  I never really grasped a "moment of silence" or "period of mourning" until now.  I just unconsciously needed time to process.

Moving away from home certainly doesn't compare to many of life's other transitions, but moving reformats the human hard drive in a most painful way.  Moving strips one down to the barest of bones.  Truly and embarrassingly, I haven't even had the heart to listen to much music the last couple of years.  All music did was remind me of home - those memories brought pain.

But in the end, I think the reformatting and the stripping down an the hurting and the loss will give me more to offer than it did before.  I'm not there yet, but this is a start to getting my {words} back.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

K-Kauai ~ Year Three

So K-Kauai, also known as Kanakuk family camp, might become a bit trite and boring after two years. The third year we might decide we've been there done that....?...... Hmmmm.... let's see....
We loved spending the week with families so special to us.... here are the Hankins and the Kittlemans.... also known as the Hanklemans.  We literally did everything together all week long. I know, a bit cheesy, but we loved every minute of it. 
We dressed up for theme nights ~This was Palmstock
This year I scored and my actual family was there too! My sister and her hubby and mom and dad even came for an evening.  This was spy night. Like my mustache? Attractive.
My too-cute niece on spy night. Who could still look cute with a crooked mustache, head lamp and purple plastic glasses? Maggie, that's who.
 Here she is again in all her cuteness. Her shirt says, "Have a Nike Day."  Hee hee.
Ahhh. love my mom and dad. They really enjoyed getting a peek at what family camp is all about.
And what is it all about? Well, Fun with a capital F. It's a lot about fun.  
It's about challenging yourself too.  Proud of my Elle Belle on Diamond Head.  Yes, I did that too, not once, but twice! 
My sister and Scott go off the zipline. 
Kami and my other adorable niece Hallie went right before them. Kami let it rip with fun! Ok, you obviously cannot tell how radiantly beautiful Hallie is from this picture. And I can't find another one right now. But trust me, she is the eldest of the three princesses. :) Sorry, Hallie!
While I'm at it, here's Lauren, my other niece. See her cute little curl on her neck? My mom wanted me to take a picture of it.  She's gorgeous.
 K-Kauai is mostly about growing closer with God.  One of Kanakuk's mottos has always been: "I am Third." God first, Others Second, I Am Third.  We all need reminding of that don't we.
One of our favorite things about camp is getting to know the awesome counselors and leaders there. This is GT, one of the directors of the camp. He is FAN-TAS-TIC. A great guy.  Most importantly, loves the Lord and lives to serve.  
This is Billy.  He somehow put up with these little urchins all week.  Well, especially the one in the Kanakuk hat.  Like I said, these staff members live to serve. 
They even brought in Justin Beiber. Big Time! ;-)
Will we go back? Absolutely.
Should you and your family go? Without question! But they are already booked for the entire summer of 2013. So start planning for 2014. You will not be sorry. Best week of our summer.  And maybe our year.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Not Sure if They Make Em Quite Like This in Oklahoma

Buzzing Yellow Sunset....
   Feels like you could Catch that Light....
      Rainbow Loping through the Other Side of the Sky....
        An Upside Down Smile...
            Dazzling Raindrops Falling...
                 Cool Shocks to the Face....
                      Yellow Firing Up to Red Overhead....
                               Praises to the One Who Made it all special for us....
                                       Here in Carterville, Illinois











Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Blues

It seems like we've got a little case of the blues around here.  Just a line in a song or an old picture or a stressful moment can start the tears flowing from just about any one of us.  We miss home!  But we are busy doing our best to create a happy new home, in this case, Kami's new blue bedroom.  Tantalizing Teal is the color by Sherwin Williams.  And it involves black and off white and a really cool chair from Pier One.  Can't wait to have it finished up for her.  In the meantime, we'll just paint our blues away.  

James 1:2 ~ Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Oklahoma Homegirls

 We were so thankful and happy to have some our homegirls come visit us this weekend.  My pledge sister Ashley came with her two girls, Nicole and Savi.  We gave them a little taste of our life here in Southern Illinois.
 Girls in the paddleboat on the lake behind our house.....
Savi caught a fish... and the pole was broken! A funny moment. 

 Every moment is a funny moment with these two.
Homegirls since they were little.
 Underwater pictures made possible by the Lifeproof phone case.  Cute.
Endless entertainment.
At Italian Village, you can write anywhere you want to.  We regressed to 7th grade and wrote Annie & Ashley BFF ~ hahahaha












Goodbye friends! Thanks for coming all the way from Oklahoma!!! Means so much <3

Friday, July 20, 2012

Dirty Dog



I think he's loving Southern Illinois. :)