After a week in a motel in town with six kids in tow, we were thrilled to be back home on Friday one day before the official first day of summer! After our septic snafu and water damaged floors, we had to be out of the house while they repaired and refinished the flooring that had been soaked. All of life aside from the absolute necessities sat on the back burner while we lived out of our van and two cozy motel rooms…traipsing back and forth to our house to feed the goat babies their bottles early and late each day, milk our mama goats, feed the meat birds and layers, check on dogs and cats, etc. To say it was crazy is a wild understatement.
But I’ve said it before and it still rings true, doing hard things together forges a sense of family. Whether its a difficult hike in the mountains, a camping trip gone total disaster or a season where all of life is plain hard…the result can be the same. It all hinges on the choices we make in the midst of the chaos. That and for me at least, believing God to be above and beyond my circumstances, whatever they may be. He has proven his absolute faithfulness over and over, and most often through the stuff of life that is either seemingly mundane or wickedly painful and difficult.
Children are amazing in their ability to adapt and look on the bright side. A week in a motel with mom and dad…with a pool even? Too fun! My ability to do the same is certainly lacking however. The first night I was wound so tight my whole body hurt from our “adventure”. After a long night, with little sleep from all our family being in such close quarters, we enjoyed the free breakfast buffet that everyone had high hopes for. Well, it turned out to be a bunch of Costco food dumped on a counter. Again, the kids had great fun checking it all out and all I did was pine away for my kitchen, healthy pancakes and eggs from our chickens.
By the end of day one, I needed a serious course correction or it was sure to be a long and miserable week. So I snatched my attitude from the dump it was in and put my chin up and decided we would do this week up right. And we did. We swam every night, ate dinner at most of the restaurants our town had to offer. We figured out how to wash clean all our milking supplies and goat bottles in the motel bathtub twice a day. We moved sleeping arrangements around until we found something that worked. We had our beloved cousins over for a swim in “our” pool just for fun too!
I’ll spare you the play by play, suffice to say that we survived. We gave grace many times and sometimes lost our temper. Life was strangely simple actually. I did miss our daily work and routine and animals. But I didn’t miss the way I flurry around from project to chore to laundry to negotiate a peace treaty to make food to clean up a spill….always onto the next thing and often missing the chance to sit and read a book with a little one or hug another one super tight just because.
Many lessons learned. Seems to always be the case. Always room to grow and room to learn. In the spirit of summer, we put our summer bucket list together, making sure we seize the season and squeeze every bit of fun right of it together I’ll post it later today in case anyone needs any inspiration!