Man, has it been three months already since I last updated?!
So much has happened!
A lot of good. A lot of tough. And definitely a lot of new.
Until now, I’ve never understood just how hard it is to be “the new girl.” Growing up in basically the same area for more than two decades, I’ve never had to be the new girl.
God has taught me a lot through this season, and I’m very thankful to be going through it because I know He is using it for His purpose in my life.
But it has definitely been a daily struggle.
I love the warmer climate here, as well as the sheer amount of opportunities the moment you step outside your door! Growing up, my family and I never really went on any vacations because we couldn’t afford them. Moving to a bigger city with easier access to things now, it feels like one huge vacation! We are totally making up for lost time, and that part of it is an absolute blast.
Homesickness is definitely still a thing though.
We’re also living in an 1,100 sq. ft. rental home with six people, two cats, and two dogs. Not exactly ideal, although I love the location.
The hardest part has been leaving some very close family and friends. Homes, hangout spots, climates, you can get used to those eventually. But people are irreplaceable, and making new friends takes time. My nephew Boe is my nephew Boe, my friend Rebekah is my friend Rebekah, and ya can’t get ’em anywhere else! 😉
Which is why I am so glad I kept this blog in the months before moving! Those memories are even more precious to me now, and I can go back to them when homesickness hits.
But now to get caught up on all the last couple of months!
Modeling an apron my mom made me for Christmas! One of the benefits in moving is that it’s a great opportunity to hit a sort of “reset” button. Things are changing so much already, it makes you think about other things that have “just always been” and what you can change. For me, one of the things I wanted to change was to learn how to cook. I bake all the time and have been meaning to learn how to cook, I just haven’t until now. Moving was a great motivation in starting over and trying new things, and I’ve loved it so far! 🙂
Dinner that night! Shredded Chicken Tacos with tomato, avocado, lime juice, and Queso Fresco cheese.
Another fun thing was having the opportunity to go to the book signing of a friend. We were in the same class together in The Christian Writers Guild, and I hadn’t seen her in probably five years. It was such a blessing to be able to go, reconnect, and celebrate her success! 🙂
Linda and I, along with a copy of her book: The Calling of Ella McFarland! 🙂
There are certain stereotypes I was excited to get on board with in moving to Texas. One of those was drinking sweet iced tea! 😉 On a lunch date with my mom one day, I felt particularly “Texan” with some sweet tea in a mason jar. So much fun! Another one has been eating lots of fabulous barbeque. I’m not a meat fan, so I wasn’t sure I could get on board with that trend. Um, not a problem. If you don’t like BBQ, you haven’t been to Texas.
One benefit in moving I didn’t foresee was growing closer to my mom. 🙂 We’ve always been close, but something about this season has just drawn us even closer together, and I am so thankful for that! ❤ It might have been that we were just too busy in our own separate worlds in Colorado, I’m not really sure. But I am enjoying it now and treasuring the times we spend together!
Truffle fries with fresh parmesan and a garlic dill aoli dipping sauce. Oh, MY GOSH, so good!! It’s funny now thinking back to how enamored I was with the Truffle Fries at The Hotel Colorado visit, because they couldn’t even begin to touch these. Southern people know how to eat, let me tell you. Whereas before I might have eaten a “gourmet” meal once a year, here it’s more like once a week. Just a tiny bit of a huge cultural change!
This photo could be an entire blog post in itself, but I’ll try to summarize as best I can. 😉 This was a Hillsong concert with 8,000 people in attendance. I have never been to a concert that large, let alone with that many people all praising God at once. It was a really powerful experience I will never forget, but it was also a night of great personal significance for my family. This is a picture of one of the lead members of Hillsong singing her popular hit, “Oceans.” Since God was the one who told us to go to Texas, my dad would sing Oceans anytime he grew discouraged or was overwhelmed trying to follow God’s instructions. When we heard Hillsong would be having a concert only 40 minutes away soon after we moved here, it was a no-brainer to go. It was an amazing night celebrating God’s faithfulness to His promises in getting us here. The song Dad used to sing with tears streaming down his face in Colorado in the privacy of his home, he now got to sing with 8,000 others, in the very place the Lord had promised to bring him. 🙂
One of my favorite things to do here has been being able to go down to the river and spend some time with the Lord or in just being still. Sometimes I’ll journal, sometimes pray or read God’s Word. Sometimes just take pictures and appreciate the beauty around me. And it is beautiful! ❤
One day I felt the Lord’s pull to go down to the river. When I did, I discovered these beautiful pond lilies blooming! 🙂 It was just a few weeks after Valentine’s Day, and a few before my birthday. If you’ll remember, the Lord did the exact same thing last year with some daffodils (also a yellow flower 😉 ). It’s no coincidence, but a sign of God’s tender mercies, His love and care for each of us, new every morning! I needed the reminder being so far from home and feeling just as far from His love, wondering if it existed here, too, when everything else in my world was so different. He used these to remind me that His love is constant and everywhere, with me wherever I go. ❤
Rooted in love. For a wellspring of life, you have to reach out to The Source. ❤
Through Wood and blood on the cross, Jesus saved us in our Fallen and dead state, and gave us New Life. He rolled away The Stone, washed us as pure as white Stone, and now it’s permanently set in stone that JESUS Loves YOU.
Refreshed and set ablaze!
Thanks for continuing to go on this journey with me, friends! Until next post.