Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Stumbling onto Inspiration

Sorry this isn't part two yet, but I had to share today's inspiration. Somehow I happened upon a book talk given by Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus (http://www.theminimalists.com/etr/) tonight. Hubs and I went and it was packed. Their story is a bit like ours: finding out truly what the important things in life are, and pointing their life in that direction. They left good paying jobs for the security of freedom. They shed possessions; they shed relationships that did not benefit their life. They taught me, again, that we are all moving forward, getting better. My oldest son and I had the same idea separately, then happened to share with each other that we felt we should eat light during the day, then with the family, eat a regular meal at night. That seems like a random statement, but it just shows that our inherent nature is to grow, get better, do better. Although our human-ness may fail us, we have each other to keep us accountable!

Another odd but very vivid dream I will share here just to get it off my chest: It was around my birthday, and I was handed a 97 billion dollar check. I know, crazy, right? I was so overjoyed, I immediately called my loved ones mortgage companies. As I was on the phone with none other than Wells Fargo, I heard a representative answer. I hung up, realizing that this check would take weeks to clear. What does that mean to me right now? Well, my impression after waking was that I need to wait for His leading before making big moves, agreeing to things, etc., even if they seem good at the time.

For example, we were just looking into land to buy. We were looking like mad for a couple weeks. We even told some family. It came to a dead stop when we realized our house wasn't worth what we thought. Plus, we really want to give the asset of a paid off house to our children someday, while still somehow paying for land they could use down the road. Our house is quite urban, so there isn't much growth to be had. While all this is shelved for a later date, I learned a valuable lesson. Even if you go full boar into a new direction, keep your mind and spirit open when there are road blocks. Step back, and truly listen to Him. It may not be time. That's okay, there are always three answers: No, yes, and not now.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Texas Trip, Take One!

We just returned from a month long trip to Texas. This trip had dual purpose. You see, our poor wheelchair van that we bought in 2004 is not up for our many trips. She's an awesome girl. Runs great, but at over 200,000 miles, would you be wanting to go cross country? So, back to Texas. We purchased a 2010 van that is, wait for it...blue! I know that means nothing to anyone but me, but I have been dreaming of a blue vehicle my whole life. When you get a wheelchair or adapted vehicle, you tend to keep them a long time--it's a pricey investment! It just so happens all of my vehicles have been red. Anyway, this blue van (we need a name, people!) was purchased by us in it's normal state. That is, it had no way for my wheelchair to enter. When we purchased this beauty February 9th, we never knew that it would be over two months that we'd actually see the finished product!

Working with our great friend Tim at http://www.getvans.com/ (shameless plug!) he set us up with the place that would be adapting our van. It just so happens that the place is in Texas. Drive to Texas in February? Get out of winter? Bummer (snark). Fast forward to February 24th: leaving day. Our intent is to tow the new van down with the motor home. It's so cold in Iowa that day, and my job is to guide the van onto the tow dolly. A few tries later and it is on. Only some front skirting was bent in the process, but we figured the van adaption place would take care of that. Now there was only two stops and 12 hours between now and our destination. Oh, did I mention it is stinking cold in Iowa in February? And that our motor home furnace was not working? Remember my aversion to cold? That first leg of the journey sucked. There is no other word for it.

Our first leg of the journey was to get to Kansas City, MO. Tim and his family happen to live there, serving and learning at the International House of Prayer. Thank God it's only three hours from us. We were able to fellowship and stay a couple nights for a visit. I will have to share about how we met this awesome family in a future blog post. Upon leaving Kansas City, we had to make a sharp turn out of their apartment complex and put a minor scrape on the van in the process. It would be another three hours to get to our next destination, Ozark, MO.

Our long time friends, Jerry and Krista, were the next stop. Two evenings of catching up with them is so refreshing. Krista just opened up her own shop, http://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/KristasBeautyBliss. She takes her true love for others and makes them feel awesome. This is her etsy store, but if you contact her through that, she can give you the address for her storefront shop in Ozark. We have such talented and wonderful friends in these two couples, and I am so thankful they let us crash with them on our way down to Texas.

Tune in for more on this story in my next post...

No Time Like the Present

It seems I've been absent for a while! You may think we are still tooling around in our motor home. Well, that's partly true. After our year long absence, we came back to our house. I will be filling in all those gaps, as I am prompted to write. I love reading inspiring blogs, and I hope this one fills that purpose. I am finding that taking joy in the mundane and the adventures is true life. To enjoy every moment, but then to have a schedule to follow are both okay. And needed. There is a time and season for everything. I hope that you will link your blog so that myself and others can be inspired. Who knows, someone could be reading and need to hear encouraging words or an engaging story that would help them through a tough spot.

So without further adieu, let the writing begin!

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Where to start? We knew we had to rip out a wall to access the bathroom easier, so that came first. Such a God thing this rig...we found a sturdy metal beam going across the top, so we had no fear of "cave-in". Husband was able to reuse the "pretty" wallboard to cover the bare wood we'd ripped out! He's so good at this stuff! We gotta keep the fake wood looking 80's motif, you know!

After this was accomplished, the big job was to install the flooring. After ripping out the bed in back for wheelchair accessibility, ('cause who needs places to sleep?) in went the this roll out vinyl that a contractor friend introduced to us this summer. It was light, and only need some trim and glue in some parts. We now have more "fake" wood flooring and it looks awesome.

Miraculously, the generator that kind of worked was an answer to prayer. Our mechanic neighbor came over, tinkered with it and started it right up. He gave us some lessons on generators, which was so helpful. Now we know that a generator goes bad from non-use. So use those generators, people!

We have yet to "use the facilities" or water for that matter. We still have to check if the water heater and furnace works. Although if we are in a place that needs a furnace, we are in the wrong place! More next time...

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Bureacratic BS

Taking a break from RV related topics to speak my mind this early Thursday morning. I just got some dishwashing time in (my thinking/praying time) and wanted to say I don't want to be a part of any organization. Anymore. Be it Boyscouts, a church denomonation, whatever! I so want to be a part of a real movement of God. Maybe the free spirit in me doesn't want to be tied down to rules anymore. Maybe some of those rules prevent us from loving people like we should. I have been guilty of that. Because I am part of this or that, I can't do this or that. How do we breath life into these clubs, etc. that we find ourselves a part? How do we love people, but not be in charge of everyone's well being? My brain hurts, I become bitter, then "burned out" as churches like to say. Loving shouldn't cause burnout! I've felt like I've lost my love for my community. Maybe our answer is to leave so that we realize what we are missing. But will we miss it? Time will tell. The world is there. And we're gonna explore it. I can have hope that we will find community wherever we go.

Monday, September 5, 2011

General Business and the Retrieval of DV

Right on the heels of the Speak conference my oldest attended church camp. It was a miserable week for all of us, as it just doesn't feel right when we aren't all together. Youngest was extra sensitive with brother being gone, and by the second night had many tears. This same week came the NEW WHEELCHAIR. I will decline to comment on it as, we'll just say, it's not the one I'm using right now. Adjustments are still being made (as in a whole back replacement) and I just hope it is done by the time we leave.

Tangent: I'm listing myself to death (and in my brain) on what to get rid of, what to do before we leave, TENANTS and fall activities coming up.

Ok, back to August. Right after new wheelchair and camp return, we traveled back down to my dad's to get DV. It was bittersweet, knowing I would be driving the minivan back home while husband and children would ride in DV. Oh how I wished we had a car dolly to pull the minivan! But I was just so happy that DV would be home. Dad, as always, did an excellent job on his handywork.

During this visit I got to visit my dad's work. He works for a nursing home as the head of (and only) maintenance. It was nice to see how much alike (once again) my dad and I really were, as I just love elderly people. I got to talk to a resident my age, as my dad thought I could give him some encouragement in his situation. So after a night stay, a few pictures and some instructions on lift usage, we took off back home.

Next up, the renovation...

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Speak Foundation and Hot-lanta

While waiting for the lift project to be completed, we attended a conference. This conference is for people with disabilities such as myself. It is put on by
The Speak Foundation, which was started by a beautiful Christian lady named Kathryn Bryant. She probably never dreamed it would be this big, but oh man it has grown. How exciting to meet up and make lifelong friends with people who know exactly the things you go through from day to day.

It was so much fun traveling around downtown Atlanta, GA, or Hot-lanta as we Speakies like to call it, in our wheelchair posse. Even getting caught in the rain was fun! What's more important is that we now have friends around the country (and Canada) that we will go to visit. How exciting! I can't tell you how invaluable this conference was for me. Good thing 16 hours in a minivan without a/c at the beginning of August didn't stop us! While in the area, we had to visit a Diners, Drive-ins and Dives restaurant, The Silver Skillet. Good old southern fare, complete with grits and lemon pie! This place hasn't been changed since its inception in the 1950's. That goes for accessibility. Since there are stairs in the front, I had to roll (squeeze) through the tiny kitchen, past the fryers and all. What we do for experience!

If that wasn't fun enough, we went to the most awesome restaurant ever with the best sister in the world on the way back: Blueberry Hill in St. Louis. This restaurant seats over 300 people, and we sat in the darts room. Yes, that means real dart boards, for free! The boys were in heaven. I loved the variety of food as well as all the framed pictures of famous people who had passed through the venue. Chuck Barry still also plays there! What a great trip!