a life changing event

Thursday, August 26, 2010

On Tuesday night, we were lucky enough to gain another child.  I know it was in a rather unconventional way, but we love him all the same.  Our host student, Hector, from California, via the Kansas Weslyean men's soccer team, moved in with us.  Hector is starting his senior year at KWU, and he needed a more stable, family oriented place to finish out his college career.  That place is our home.

All my life, I knew that I was destined to give back.  To help others who needed it.  The thing is, I always thought I would do that in some big, grand way.  I would travel to some remote country and give my all helping small children.  Or I would live in the slums of a city and help the elderly live out their days in dignity.  NEVER in a million years did I ever think it would happen in our own backyard, our own HOME, with a college kid from California.

When Hector told us he wanted to go home to California and not finish up with school, our response was immediate and confident.  He could move in with us for the next year.  He would live in our spare room in the basement, go to school, coach Carson's soccer team and continue working at the Country Club on the weekends.  For us it was a no-brainer.  It was the thing to do.  It was the RIGHT thing to do. 

It wouldn't be easy for him, he would be expected to eat family dinners with us. He would have his share of chores around the house.  He would get to babysit the kids from time to time, and he would pay us some rent (which we will save for him and give back to him upon graduation.)  It wouldn't be easy for us.  We would have another body to maneuver around in the house.  We would have one more mouth (a college kid at that) to feed.  Another shower to get scheduled in the day.  More loads of laundry, but we would do it. 

It has proven to be the right thing.  Hector is already a member of our family.  His parents have texted, called and written letters to us.  They are so grateful, polite, and thankful.  I know it won't always be cotton candy and roses, but it is good.  It will always be good.  It is good because it is the right thing.  And I feel like I am doing what I have been called to do all along.  To help someone in need.  I might not be in a big city, or a foreign country, but I am making a difference in some one's life, and that's what really counts, right?  My biggest hope is that he pays it forward one day.

random thoughts

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"The trouble with being poor is that it takes up all of your time"
Willem DeKooning

Really, isn't that true?  When I think back to times where we were really struggling with getting everything paid, and never felt like we had a penny to spare, all of my mental time was taken up with the thoughts of being poor, and how to make ends meet.  We are currently in a better place, and I find that I don't spend nearly as much time thinking about those things.

There has to be a happy medium where we are always conscious of our situation, but when the situation turns more dire, we need to be confident that we have "saved for this." We need to be able to rely on what we have been doing all along to get us thru a hard time.

Just pondering...


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Last night we reached a milestone.  Carson came with me and we ran 2 miles together.  I did have to beg him a little to go (and promise that next time he could ride his bike while I ran), but we did it...together.

He is definitely a faster runner than me (come on, he has 29 years on me) but he was sweet and waited for his mom.  His basketball coaches passed by us in their car, as well as his papo, and I could see the delight and surprise on all of their faces.  I was beaming the whole way.

I think this could be the start of something really great for us!

ps, can you tell I finally found a sunflower field to shoot?

my 5 things list

Friday, August 13, 2010

Melisa at the lil bee does a My Five Things post, and I thought I would do my own:

1.  Spend a summer travelling around the world with my children before they are grown.
2.  Write a book.
3.  Retire as a college professor.
4.  Build a house in the country.
5.  Finish a half-marathon in under 2:30.

How about you?  Do you have a list of things you want to do in this lifetime?  I love this list because all of these things are do-able, but will require work and persistence. 

The story of the sunflowers

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My friend and I made a plan
we were going to photograph sunflower fields
in the waning evening light

I had the fields located
the camera batteries were charged
and the sunset looked to be beautiful

we drove 30 miles to the North
and located the fields
but to our dismay,
the flowers were nodding their heads

there would be no sunflower photos tonight
they were thirsty or sleepy
and the light had faded much too quickly.

But luckily, the carnival was in town...

road trip...day 4

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Our final day of fun was spent at the Marengo Cave, and canoeing 7 miles down the Blue River. 

For the second morning in a row, Molly couldn't get out of bed by 8:30 for breakfast with
the other guests of the B & B. 
Admittedly, we were all tired from our crazy, full day at Holiday world!

The cave was awesome, and the canoeing a blast.  I was really tired at the end of our float, but Carson was a real trooper and paddled most of the way with me.  There were more than several places we had to get out and push/pull the canoe.  But as you can see we took advantage of one of them and got out to play. 
(Molly will probably kill me when she sees this photo some day!)

We had a blast on our adventure, and are definitely planning on doing something fun like it again next year...it's so fun to find different reasons to check states off  our list!

road trip...day 3

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

3 very tired folks, after a whole day spent at Holiday World and Splashin' Safari.
I might be getting too old for a day at a theme park...just sayin!