Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Our little life

Boy have things been busy 'round these parts!

Jay has been leaning into the many roles related to his ministry: shepherd, organizer, developer, fundraiser, accountant, teacher, mentor and a whole bunch of others. He is a faithful servant with serious hustle. I love watching him respond with fervency and intentionality to the opportunities God has put before him. I also love watching him unscrew stubborn pickle jar lids, because BICEPS. Also triceps. Also deltoids. Also whatever muscles make up the forearm.

In this season, I have stepped out of my teaching role and am on leave from my PhD program so I can continue to rest and heal. I have been craving this sort of rest for many years, and I'm so thankful for the many ways that God has made this possible!

My free time and healing body have made it possible for me to more fully support Jay in his ministry. I am surprised by how much I am loving this support role! I always thought I would enjoy a rich, permanent career in academia, should my health allow it, but I'm so happy to be doing traditional wifely things.

I cook, clean, run errands, and when I can, I help Jay brainstorm and develop leader training and club activities. I think this work is so satisfying because I'm excited about how God is using Jay to build the Kingdom of Heaven, AND I have never had anyone champion my gifts the way Jay has. He is my number one fan, and his support makes me want to lay aside many of my ambitions to come alongside him. It's just so special.

Jay and I are living in Little Saigon, in the heart of Orange County. Our neighbors are primarily hard-working immigrants whose dinners send delightful aromas dancing through the apartment complex. We also have a handful of neighbors in their late teens and early twenties who have transitioned out of the foster system. The businessmen who own our complex offer a cluster of the units at a very reduced rate to these young adults to help them get on their feet, and we will be developing a mentorship program for them in the near future. I can't wait to meet them!

In the meantime, I'm enjoying getting to know the neighbors nearest me, particularly a group of young gals I've been doing a fair bit of baking with. We've made cookies and, most recently, rainbow waffles; and our next project is French macaroons.

You guys, I have never made French macaroons, but I watch the Great British Baking Show, so I know they are, quite possibly, the hardest cookie on the planet to make. When the girls and I were making our macaroon plans, I suggested we keep our expectations very low. They were game, and so we are forging ahead.

In other news, my niece Aria is still the Cutest Baby in the World, but ONLY because I haven't met my second little niece or nephew. That's right, my littlest brother and his wife are pregnant with their first!!!

I am so happy. And I wish I lived closer to these babies.

Thankfully, my brother and his wife were in southern California a few weeks back, and Jay and I were able to join them.

We camped next to a water ski lake and spent our days doting on Aria.

Can you read Jay's shirt? "This is what an awesome uncle looks like!"

It was wonderful, and we are scheming to see her again soon.

We're also celebrating the limbic system retraining victories I experienced on that trip! Eighteen months ago my vertigo and nausea were so bad, I could not have fathomed getting on a boat, but I hopped right on a water ski boat on this trip, and my body did great! I daresay, it felt almost normal! It is such a joy doing things I thought I'd never be able to do again.

I've said it before, but I'll say it again: if you're on the fence about doing DNRS, do it! It'll be the best $200 you ever spent.

And with that, I'm signin' off.

Happy fallish Tuesday, friends.

I'm cheering for ya, Home Skillets.


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