My Love/Hate Relationship with October

I love the colors of October with the brilliant oranges and deep reds mixed in with some left over green from summer.  I love the slightly cooler temperatures and especially like it here in Arkansas during the fall.  I enjoy seeing all the fall decorations including scarecrows, hay bales and pumpkins.

Image result for arkansas fall colors public use

Image result for arkansas fall colors public use

What is it that I don’t like about October?  My least favorite holiday occurs at the end of October.  Friends, I dread Halloween… every single year.  I’ve never been a big fan and I think I dislike it more each year.  I’ve gone back and forth between celebrating it and not but the years we have celebrated Halloween nothing scary was allowed.  One year we had a little fall party for our family and we did crafts, played snacks and ate lots of yummy food.  Most years we haven’t handed out candy and our kids haven’t been trick or treating except at the local trunk or treat for several years.

My kids keep asking what we are doing this year and I just can’t decide where I stand on this issue!  I decided to search the Scriptures for some guidance and I made notes of questions I want to ask my family about this holiday.  I would highly encourage you to get a little booklet from Answers in Genesis called A Biblical and Historical Look at Halloween. You might be surprised that by the end they don’t have a staunch “NO” to Halloween.  Anyway, here are my thoughts…

1 Corinthians 10:23 All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable.  All things are lawful, but not all things edify.
Is what and how you are celebrating helpful; does it build you and your family up?

1 Corinthians 10:24-30  Let no one seek his own good, but that of his neighbors.  Eat anything that is sold in the market without asking questions for conscience’ sake; For the Earth is the Lord’s and all it contains.  If one of the unbelievers invites you and you want to go, eat anything that is set before you without asking questions for conscience’ sake.  But if anyone says to you, “This is meat sacrificed to idols,” do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for conscience’ sake; I mean not your own conscience, but the other man’s; for why is my freedom judged by another’s conscience?  If I partake with thankfulness, why am I slandered concerning that for which I give thanks?
Who is watching what your family does?  Are you serving your neighbor and drawing him closer to Christ by the activities in which you participate?

1 Corinthians 15:54-55 But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP in victory. O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?”
Our Savior died to put death to death.  Does the activity you are considering glorify death?

1 Peter 5:8-9 “Be alert and of sober mind.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  Resist him, standing firm in the faith…”
Could the enemy be subtly present in the activity your family might be apart of?

1 Corinthians 10:31  Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
Can I bring glory to God while I’m joining in on this activity?

Isaiah 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
Does this activity make light of sin, evil or darkness?  Does it celebrate or honor sin?  Even if only a little?

Ephesians 5:11-12 Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.
Does this activity cause spiritual unfruitfulness?  Would your family be participating in a work of darkness or something shameful?

Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
Does this activity allow you to ‘dwell’ on whatever is true, honorable, right, pure, etc?  Or does it cause you to ‘dwell’ on darkness?

Additional questions to ask yourself and/or your family:

  • Is Halloween a celebration of the devil?
  • If we participate will it be teaching our kids that the devil is fun?
  • If you participate in a fall festival or trunk or treat is this celebrating Halloween?
  • Can carving pumpkins be fun – yes!  Although I read that they were originally supposed to be scary faces and put near front doors to ward off evil spirits.
  • Do your teens understand who the devil is and what it looks like when their generation celebrates him?  2 Corinthians 11:4 says ‘he masquerades as an angel of light.’
  • Do your kids know how to fight the devil (fight temptation to do wrong)?

Friends, I still don’t have an answer!  But I know that every year at this time I just dread the ‘what are we doing for Halloween’ question.  If it was simply cute little kids dressed up as frogs and lady bugs that would be great but the darkness I see in the costumes and decorations just make me sick to my stomach… literally.  Why are people drawn to such darkness?  I just don’t understand how anyone can enjoy cut off heads hanging on their porches and demon babies adorning their front yard.  I just don’t want anything to do with any of it!

Yes I’ve read those comments that are ‘supportive’ of Halloween….

  • it’s just costumes/decorations and it’s not real
  • just let them be kids
  • if we don’t pass out candy we are not very nice Christians as we should open our doors and shine the light
  • our costumes should be scary to scare off the evil spirits
  • your kids are deprived if they don’t participate

… and many other similar comments.

PERSONALLY, I STILL DON’T LIKE HALLOWEEN.  I have hesitations about it which makes just ‘enjoying’ it difficult.

Perhaps this year we will find a trunk or treat to do and just leave it at that….

Gaylene

 

 

Back to School!

We started our school year in early August… my 11th year teaching our kids.  What a journey it has been.  When Natasha was born I would have laughed at you if you told me we would be a homeschooling family.  Yet, here we are – a homeschooling family!  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Yes, it’s a challenge but to have us all together, building our relationships, studying God’s word, learning about all kinds of different subjects and able to pray together throughout the day brings me such joy and peace.  My number one job as their mother is to teach them God’s Word and consistently point them to Christ.  Math, science and the rest of the academic subjects are secondary because what good does it do to have all that knowledge if their souls are captured by the world?

For several years I have had all the kids color a page that represents the grade they are starting, even though with homeschoolers the grade doesn’t really dictate what they are learning.  So, without further delay here are the kids pictures for this school year.  Our first school year in Arkansas!

Natasha is 16 years old and is in the 11th grade.  Every year I marvel at how fast time is flying… our oldest has less then 2 years of school left!  Since moving to Arkansas we have truly been blessed to be able to join a homeschool co-op called BELIEVERS.  Also, a wonderful mom in our church has a small writing class that Natasha was able to join and their first book study is To Kill A Mockingbird.  She is also interning at a really neat bakery twice a week.  She has quite a busy schedule between academics, the bakery, piano lessons and co-op!  Lord willing, she’ll be able to get her drivers license soon as she’s met the drivers permit requirements.  The bible verse on her picture is Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make our paths straight.

Natasha – August 2019

Mikayla is 14 and in the 9th grade.  Since this is her first year in high school she’s getting used to a more demanding schedule.  However, she isn’t planning on becoming a rocket scientist or an engineer so she’s not on an intense rigorous schedule.  While Natasha is in her writing class, our other 4 kids are part of group of younger students going through Pilgrim’s Progress and Mikayla helps with this class.  Mikayla’s two co-op classes are Puzzles, Logic and Games and Being Mission Minded.  She is a very diligent student and will persevere through tough subjects without giving up.  Her favorite subject this year is the Earth Science class by DIVE as it includes lots of really cool experiments.  In a couple of years, she hopes to volunteer at an animal shelter as she loves all things related to animals.  The bible verse on her pictures is Psalm 118:24 This is the day that the Lord has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Mikayla – August 2019

Alex is 11 and in 5th grade.  Many 11 year olds are in 6th grade, however, our umbrella school in Colorado automatically put her in the younger grade back when she started school.  It turned out to be a blessing because she had a severe speech impediment and being back a grade allowed us to really focus on her speech.  For the co-op Alex picked a class called Build-It where they will build catapults, marshmallow guns and various other fun projects and a Drama class.  She too is an excellent student and sometimes borders on being a perfectionist which we are working on with her.  She loves science and doing experiments and is focused on Astronomy this year.  The bible verse on her picture is Psalm 106:1 Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.  For his lovingkindness is everlasting.

Alexandra – August 2019

Our Jonathan is about to turn 9 and is in the 3rd grade.  He’s the typical active boy and he keeps me on my toes.  I keep him pretty scheduled throughout the day and rotate between desk work and more active play… too much idle time and he gets himself in trouble!  He has been my favorite kiddo to teach to read.  I have enjoyed watching his eyes light up and his smile appear as he learns new things.  His co-op classes are Human Anatomy and Marine Biology and both of his teachers go to our church and he loves both of their families – he’s very excited!  Like Alex, he loves science and is really good at math.  The bible verse on his picture is Ephesians 6:10-11 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.  Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.

Jonathan – August 2019

This is Katherine’s first official year in school, is 5 years old and in Kindergarten.  I think at this point she loves all the things she is learning which is a good thing!  To be honest, some of her work is busy work to keep her focused while I’m working with the other kids but she enjoys it so I don’t feel too bad!  Like Jonathan, too much idle time causes her to whine and get in trouble.  Her co-op classes are Food Art and Rock Art.  She’ll get to bring home fun little creations each week.  The bible verse on her picture is Ephesians 5:1-2 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

Katherine – August 2019

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

 

It’s Just Geography

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.

Have you ever been to or lived in Colorado?  Have you ever driven through Glenwood Canyon and gazed in awe at the stunning mountains towering high above you?  Have you ever hiked to Hanging Lake near Glenwood Springs where a breathtaking lake with crystal clear blue/green water sits high up on the side of a mountain?  What about a stroll or bike ride in Waterton Canyon, complete with wildlife and waterfalls?  Have you ever slid down the Great Sand Dunes in the San Luis Valley on a sled and buried your toes in the warm sand?  What about enjoy one of the hundreds of amazing camping spots throughout the state?  Have you ever taken a chair lift to the top of Copper Mountain and skillfully maneuvered down a diamond black trail on skis in 3 feet of fresh powder or taken that same trail in the summer but this time your mode of transportation is a mountain bike?  Or spent the day enjoying refreshing water rides at Water World in north Denver, complete with just over 70 acres of thrilling rides, relaxing lazy rivers and yummy food?

Those are just a few of the hundreds of things that can be enjoyed in the beautiful state of Colorado.  Up until about 3 months ago I had lived there my entire life.  I was born in the heart of Denver and lived in various metro area suburbs throughout my 48 years.  Never, ever did I think I would live anywhere else… until Proverbs 16:9 repeatedly entered my mind and heart.  The mind of man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.

After watching Phil work 2 jobs, sometimes 3 jobs to take care of his family for several years, I realized something needed to change.  At the time, I didn’t know what needed to change I just knew I didn’t see much light at the end of the tunnel.  Yes, the Lord is our light but I was starting to strongly feel like I was the one holding us back from getting in a better financial position.

You see, I was pretty attached to Colorado and the people who lived there.  I’ve never been one to enjoy change and I certainly avoided initiating the change!  However, several verses kept coming up in devotionals, prayers, bible reading and discussions with dear friends and I started to wonder if I was obeying God by being so determined to stay in Colorado.  Was my fear of change and the fear of leaving the only state I ever lived in trusting in the Lord?  Was I so stubborn to stick to the plans in my mind and not let the Lord direct my steps?  After some time I felt very convicted that I was not trusting the Lord with my future and the future of my family.  Why was I so scared to leave Colorado, when most of my favorite people would be leaving with me?  By January 2019, I realized we needed to make a drastic change and so my prayers shifted from Lord help us to find ways to meet our needs easier so Phil doesn’t have to work so many hours, to Lord, where is it that you want our family to live and serve you?  Well, the Lord answered those prayers with the selling of our house and the buying of the house where we now live.

Here we are…. in beautiful Fort Smith, Arkansas.  I have no regrets and I do not miss the big city AT ALL ya’ll!!!  While we haven’t yet explored Arkansas much I’m confident we will find just as wonderful adventures here that we had in Colorado.  Seriously, I don’t miss Denver or the 4 million people that live there.  Sometimes I miss the mountains… Colorado does have STUNNING mountains people! I miss my dad and step mom but it turns out they are leaving Colorado as well and moving to South Carolina.

We miss Phil’s brother Andy and his girlfriend Renee.  We spent most of our birthdays and holidays with each other so we definitely feel that loss.

Us visiting with Andy and Renee in June when we went back to CO for the CHEC conference.

What I miss the most is the people that were the closest to me like family but also my friends.  I’m an introvert so I didn’t have a dozen close friends, only a few but I miss them terribly.   My dear friend June has walked this journey of faith, marriage, parenting and homeschooling with me since the day I became a Christian back in 2000.  As a side note it’s her fault we homeschool… along with Kevin Swanson… I read his book The Second Mayflower.  She has been a mentor, a trusting friend to share my dreams, fears and joys with, and a prayer warrior for me and my family.  Not to mention she taught my oldest two kids writing and transported my kids to Spanish classes in our early years of homeschooling.  Her family has been such a huge blessing to my family over these 19 years.  For me she embodies Proverbs 31:26 She opens her mouth in wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.

In addition to June is my dear friend Laura.  Laura and I have been very close, sometimes inseparable for about 3 years. I remember first meeting Laura and I remember thinking ‘I don’t have time for another friend!’ so I kind of put her off for awhile.  But our faithful Lord had other plans.  After a few play dates getting our kids together we clearly hit it off.  Over these 3 years we have grown very close; we have laughed and cried together.  She was a huge help in getting my family packed and moved and even though I’m 820 miles away from her she still encourages me daily… thank you Lord for texting!  Laura is the strongest woman I know and has endured things that most of us can only try to imagine but she has stayed firm in her faith and has leaned on the Lord.  She is such an inspiration to me.

It’s these two friends I miss the most.  I do miss our church in Colorado but honestly, the church we have joined here has had me in awe with the love and service they show to one another.  I miss the Button family who was kind enough to let us stay there for 10 days before the kids and I moved here and also hosted us when we went back in June.

Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous!  Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.  I wrote this verse on many of our moving boxes as a reminder to me not to fear but to Trust the Lord.

God is faithful my friends!  2 Thessalonians 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.  Moving here was a step of faith for me and I feel strengthened.  I feel like my tight grip on Colorado has been released and it’s quite freeing! The Lord I love is here along with my steadfast husband and 5 amazing children.

Really, it’s just geography.

A Colorado sunrise, June 2019

An Arkansas sunrise, June 2019

A walk around Belmar lake with my friend June 2019. These pictures were taken with my phone and are completely unaltered.

Much to Share!

Wow, so much has happened in the last several months… where to begin!

Some of you may know that for well over a year Phil and I considered buying a bed and breakfast for our family to run as a family business.  We spent many hours searching the internet for properties for sale that were not only profitable but also large enough to fit our entire family of 8.  It was nearly impossible to find a bed and breakfast for sale that would indeed fit our family and be affordable so we decided to put that dream on a back burner for now.  We still want to own a bed and breakfast some day but it will need to wait until a different season of life.

From that point we changed our focus from purchasing a profitable business to where could we move that would allow us to get out of debt (or at least a strong start), have a set up that would allow my mother (who has lived with us since 2005) to be on the ground level and allow me to be a full time stay at home, homeschooling mom.  Those of you that know the Denver Metro Area housing market will know that finding this type of property in the city or her suburbs is virtually impossible.

In August of 2018, Mikayla, Alex and I took a road trip down through Texas, then east through Arkansas.  We stayed a couple of nights with friends in Charleston who showed us around Fort Smith a bit.  We then headed home through Oklahoma and New Mexico.  We really enjoyed our time in Fort Smith so Phil and I started praying for God’s direction and will for our family.  Staying in Denver was becoming increasingly impossible and we knew we needed to make some changes.  On the internet we explored San Antonio, Texas, some areas in Arizona, New Mexico and finally Arkansas.  We felt God was pointing us to the Fort Smith area.

At the time I worked with a real estate agent in Golden who had a ton of contacts.  I told her we wanted to sell our house and after giving her a description our home in Lakewood (apartment on the 2nd floor, etc.) she got on her cell phone and 5 minutes later told me she had someone who wanted to come look at it.  After a couple of showings with the same family, they made an offer and we accepted.  On March 23rd we were under contract with a closing date of April 30th!

At the end of March this year Natasha, Jonathan and I piled into our Suburban and headed southeast towards Fort Smith.  We spent 3 full days in the area and I looked at 14 properties, 2 of them I looked at a second time.  We looked at properties all the way from Rudy on down to Greenwood.  Once we were back in Denver, Phil and I put an offer down on a property in Greenwood.  It had 2 acres, a full size home and a little cottage for my mom.  Due to some legal issues with the sellers our contract fell through so we set our sights on a home in the city of Fort Smith.

We made an offer on the home we now own that was $10,000 less then asking price fulling expecting a counter offer.  Praise God, they accepted our offer because our agent explained to them we were looking for a home with a second living area for an older relative.  Our home in Colorado sold on April 30th and we did a remote closing on May 1st for our new home in Fort Smith.  There was so much excitement going in our family!

Phil, my mom and 2 dogs headed to Fort Smith the morning of May 1st and arrived about 9pm.  The kids and I stayed back in Colorado with friends to fulfill a few commitments we had.  Phil, with a little help here and there managed to replace the flooring in my mom’s area, manage 2 dogs, unload 2 moving trailers (with the amazing help of 3 Taggart young men!) and fix some plumbing issues all while being quite sick.  He was ready for the rest of the family to join him but it would be a few more days.

After finishing our 3 Spanish classes (2 of them for high school credit), a piano recital (both as students and Natasha as teacher), a violin recital and saying goodbye to some very special friends, the kids and I got in our Suburban early on the morning of May 10th with a truck full of stuff and headed to Fort Smith.  It was a long drive but we were all so excited to see Phil, my mom and the dogs.

So, here we are in Fort Smith, Arkansas.  Friends, until now, I have lived in Colorado all my life… 48 years!  Change is hard for me… always has been.  BUT, I do not regret our decision to leave the only state I’ve called home.  We love living here.  Of course, there are always things to get used to when change occurs but I love that I’m home full time, we have a beautiful house in a beautiful neighborhood (our house and neighborhood in CO were not the greatest but served our purposes) and we are meeting some pretty amazing families.  We’ve even already found a church home!  The Highway 71 Alma Church of Christ has been so welcoming to us and have made us feel at home.

Next post I’ll share how we are doing… what has been the most challenging for me.

Proverbs 16:3 Commit your works to the Lord and your plans will be established.

From the outside.

Beautiful kitchen.

One of two fireplaces.

An aerial view of our property.

The cover to our Spring Piano Recital.

Civil War Ball

Hi Friends!  The last time I posted was six months ago!  Wow, so much has happened in the last six month but this post will tell the story of the Civil War Ball that Natasha and Mikayla got to attend with some dear friends of ours.  It was such a fun evening and such a wonderful expereince.

This Civil War Ball was started many years ago by a homeschool dad to give his teenagers an evening something like prom.  However, he didn’t really want to mimic a public school prom as they aren’t really a wholesome event… more like a cesspool of temptation to throw our teenagers.  So, he came up with the idea of Civil War Ball.  He rents out the Douglas County Fairgrounds for the entire day.  Those that register can come in the morning for dance lessons to learn period dances from that era.  Then the kids have several hours to have fun before the dance begins in the evening.  He has arranged for a handful of costume providers to be on site to rent period dresses and soldier/gentleman attire.  Many families make their own dresses and we were blessed to borrow a dress for Natasha from friends who go every year and had several extra dresses to choose from.  Mikayla’s dress was a former Elvish dress (think Lord of the Rings) that she altered a bit to fit the era.

Unfortunately, there are typically more young ladies that attend then young men so sometimes they have to dance a step or two with another gal but it’s all so much fun!  My girls had a wonderful time and are already planning for next year!  The parents can even join in on the fun with costumes and dancing!

The young men line up and the girls are announced as they enter the ball.

This beautiful dress was made by family friends.

The blue beauty was also made by family friends – the dress that is!

Hopefully, later this week I can fill you in on all the changes for the Wilson family!

Links I Love

Hello – I know it’s been awhile….

This is just a short post to share 2 links with you.

The first is a blog post by Michelle Lesley.  While it’s a little long it is well worth the 5 minutes it took to read it.  Unfortunately, our society is filled with shallow Christians that truly take away from the gospel.  I know this is an area that I need to improve on… I’m so concerned of what they will think of me or of making them angry but truly, it is God that I anger when I shy away from confronting (of course in love) sin.  Take a moment and read this post!

Secondly, this podcast by Kevin Swanson is spot on!  I pray for my children’s spouses regularly.  I pray that they love God and honor marriage the way God intended.  God didn’t put marriage in place to force us into a bunch of boring rules.  After being married for 18 years now (and looking forward to 100 more years) I can honestly say that marriage is the most rewarding experience.  Yes, there are challenges but Phil and I honor God and each other and make our family a priority, truly we are blessed!  Listen to the podcast… it’s only about 20 minutes long.

Stay tuned for pictures from the Civil War Ball that Natasha and Mikayla attended a couple of weeks ago!

Gaylene

August 19, 2018

We woke up Sunday morning in Paris… Paris, Texas! After filling our tummies with Texas shaped waffles we loaded up our rental car and got on the road to find a gas station.

A slight side story… as I was filling the car that morning I noticed dozens of huge brown crickets all over the gas station lot. Even crawling up the dispensers! They were everywhere and at least 5 times the size of the little black ones we have around here.

Anyway, we put in the next Narnia audiobook in the player and hit the road towards Mena, Arkansas. It took about 2.5 hours or so to get to the small community of Mena. The main point of stopping in Mena was to take a look at a potential commercial property. We have friends who own this land and would like to fix up this old inn and get it running again. However, after seeing it I’m not sure it’s worth the money it would take to ‘fix it’ and it might be a better investment to scrape the property and start over.

After spending about 45 minutes looking at the property we headed north to visit friends in Ft. Smith. On the way we had something interesting happen. The road to Ft. Smith is a little two lane road surrounded by beautiful forest. The amount of trees was stunning! Back to the story, as we came around a curve I noticed an older lady standing in the middle of the street waving her arms at us to stop. As I stopped and rolled down my window she came up and pointed to a piece of paper. I could tell immediately that she was hearing impaired. I kind of nodded ok, not really understanding what she was asking. She then went over to the passenger side and showed Belle the paper. Again, I nodded and then she opened the back passenger door and hopped in the car next to Alex. She moaned a few sounds and pointed ahead so I just started driving and she would point here and there to show me which way to go. After about 15 minutes of driving she had me pull into a church parking lot. Using sign language she said thank you, got out and went to church! I wondered out loud if she gets to church that way every Sunday!

Ok, so we make it to Ft. Smith and head to Charleston to stay with friends. Charleston is about 35 minutes out of Ft. Smith and is an absolutely charming town! My dear friend, Sandy, took some time to show me around this cute little town and I think I could see my family living there.

We were so blessed to meet the Taggart family. Sandy and I have been friends over email for several years but we finally got to meet in person and it was so much fun! They spoiled us with comfy beds to sleep in, yummy food, and fun fellowship. They even talked us into staying a second night. They have 11 amazing kids and have quite a unique family story! Our kids became fast friends and we so enjoyed our time with them.

Property is much less expensive in Charleston… hmmm… maybe in our future?

The Sonlight Inn, Mena, Texas

We got to ride a trolley in Ft. Smith

August 17, 2018

Hello again! I’m going to try to finish telling you about our great summer adventure.

So, on Friday morning, Alfredo and Amy Sue closed on their new house and we all started unloading the moving truck. It took most of the day and we were all pretty exhausted. Once we got them a bit settled we caught a ride to get our rental car and headed a bit north to spend the night in Comfort.

We got checked into the Meyer’s Bed and Breakfast around 7pm. I had hoped to get there earlier so we could spend more time exploring Comfort and the bed and breakfasts 34 acres. We walked the beautiful acres and along the creek for about an hour and enjoyed the amazing sunset. Then we headed to our very comfortable room and settled in for the night.

After a good nights sleep we headed to the breakfast room and had a very filling and delicious breakfast. We sat at a table close to the windows and watched the deer grazing across the creek.

I wanted to get on the road and head towards Arkansas but the girls really wanted to swim so I let them play in the lovely pool for about an hour. Even at 9 in the morning it was about 80 degrees but the humidity wasn’t too bad. We packed up our car, stopped to buy some road trip snacks and jumped on the highway at 10:30 am.

I was a bit nervous getting on the road being the only adult and driver and driving 2 of my kids across a few states without my rock (Phil is my rock!) but I did a lot of praying and God gave me confidence. Mena, Arkansas, is about 9 hours away from Comfort and since we didn’t leave until mid morning I didn’t think we could make it there by that evening so I figured we’d have to find a place to stay somewhere along the way.

Have you ever stayed the night in Paris? I decided we would stop in Paris, Texas. It is a fairly small town but I was able to find a room in a little hotel to stay the night. It was a decent room but not nearly as lavish as the Meyer’s Bed and Breakfast!

Friday Finds

I know, I know… I need to finish telling you about my trip… soon!  But today is just a short post to share a few of my favorite finds during this week.

This post by Michelle Lesley is spot on!  While her blog is geared towards women this post is necessary for all Christians to read.  Let’s be weird together… read the post and you’ll understand!

This podcast by Kevin Swanson was fascinating. This podcast was not what I expected it to be… you should take a listen!  I know, for those of you that think Kevin is a little… um… out there, I find his podcasts a breath of fresh air.  Someone bold enough to speak the truth. The world has enough wish washy Christians… we need more believers to stand up for Gods Word!

I was at a birthday party not too long ago and they served a white chocolate raspberry bundt cake that was truly awe inspiring!  Phil found this copy cat recipe. I haven’t tried it yet but perhaps this weekend. Then I’ll have to figure out how to make one gluten free for him!  Enjoy!

That’s it for this week. I’ll try to finish sharing about my trip over the weekend.

Gaylene

Psalm 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Happy 17 years and 9 month Anniversary to the most amazing man! I love you Phil!

I did not sleep as well last night.  Between my tossing and turning and Mikayla yelling at Jonathan in her sleep I didn’t get much rest.

Today was the last leg of the drive to San Antonio.  We arrived around 5pm and went to the Vera’s house. The Pinto’s have known this family for many years and were instrumental in helping the Pinto’s move to San Antonio.

Before landing in San Antonio, Amy Sue and I (and the kids with us) stopped in Comfort along the way. There is a Bed and Breakfast for sale that we wanted to check out. We drove through the small town and stopped at the BNB to look around. It was beautiful! I made reservations for the girls and I for Friday evening.

Once in San Antonio we all went to see the Pinto’s new house. They don’t close on it until Friday but we were able to do the final walk through. It’s a beautiful 4 bedroom, 2.5 bath home in a pleasant neighborhood.

One of the most obvious differences between San Antonio and Denver is humidity…. wowza! 98 degrees feels a lot different when the humidity is 49%. I’m sure you get used to it though.  But I do love the rolling hills and lush trees that span the landscape.

The girls and I stayed with the Vera family for the night. They have 2 girls ages 5 and 8. They played dress up for awhile and then we went to bed.  The Pinto family stayed with another family friend.