I feel like as summer is winding down our days have become a whirlwind. It's time to fit in some visits with friends and relatives before school starts. And, my husband has been crazy busy with preparing the downstairs apartment at our rental property for new tenants (more on that further down).
Anyway, it's hard to come up with one cohesive thought today. So, I'll just share some of the things that are on my mind...
1. First of all, thank you so much to everyone who left such kind comments on my last post. And, thank you for your prayers. I'm waiting to receive an address so I can write my friend while she's in prison. I'm looking forward to being able to write her, help her keep in touch with life out here, and hopefully to encourage her a bit.
2. On Sunday, we visited our old church, New Hope Community Church. It was the church that John and I were a part of for most of our married life...up until about a year ago. At that point, we made the painful decision to look for another church.
We loved our old church and our church family. Unfortunately, for some reason, the numbers of people coming kept dropping. The church had started out as pretty small to start with. I can't say I remember there ever being a time that there were more than 100 people. And, we loved that part of it. We loved that we knew everyone and everyone knew us. We really were a family.
Even when we started losing people we stayed because we truly felt we belonged there, that we had a place there, that we were called to be there. But, as our children grew older, and the church became smaller and smaller we started to feel like it was time to move on.
So, we learned a few weeks back that this past Sunday would be the last Sunday for New Hope. And, we decided we wanted to be there for one last worship time with our old church family. It was bittersweet. We were saying a final good-bye to the church itself. But, the people will always be part of us.
3. As I mentioned earlier my husband has been busy at work this month at our rental property. We purchased this property at the beginning of the summer. (I plan to write a post sometime soon about how and why we started this venture).
Let's just say, it's been an education. The 2-unit building had tenants at the time we purchased the property. But, we chose not to renew the lease for our downstairs tenant. We received multiple complaints about the tenant in the short time since we had bought it. And, we learned that the police had been to approximately 14 domestic disturbance calls in the last 10 months at that location.
The apartment was a wreck. It reeked. And, there was such a heaviness that you could sense when you walked in the front door. Before my husband began any renovations he asked another man from our church to walk through the apartment with him in prayer. So, together they prayed over the property - and that God would lead good tenants to it.
My husband (with the help of neighbors) has been working almost non-stop. Fixing up the apartment is literally like another full-time job. Everything has been completely repainted. The bathroom needed an entirely new tub surround. And, everything needed a thorough cleaning. Plus, the termites and roaches needed to be evicted.
He's not quite finished, but he's getting there. Now, when you walk into the apartment it's a completely different place. It's so much brighter and is actually appealing.
Now, we are continuing to pray that God would lead the right tenants to us. And, we are hoping to have tenants who could move in by Sept. 1.
4. We had a tornado warning for our area yesterday. There were severe thunderstorms predicted, but then the news started reporting sightings of a funnel cloud and it was headed directly our way! The only reason I even knew this is because my mother called me to tell me. She is my own personal weatherman.
I took the kiddos to the basement. I knew it probably wouldn't turn out to be anything. But, I wanted to be safe. If a tornado really did form, I might not have that much warning. And, getting four children and a dog into the basement is something best done before it reaches crisis mode. (By the way, for those of you when you hear the word 'basement' pictured a finished basement with perhaps a rec room or a media space and are wondering what the big deal about going to the basement is..let me define 'basement'. Our basement could actually be better called a cellar. We live in an old house. The basement is dank, damp, dark, yukky, and to small children a little bit scary.)
While we were sitting down there, my 5 year old, Edison said to me, "Mom, what if something happened and me &Wyatt & Charlie & Joseph were OK, but you and daddy were dead?" I was a little taken aback by his question. But, I assured him that I was sure we were all going to be OK, but that if something ever did happen that he and his brothers would be well taken care of.
I also reminded him that Grandma and Grandpa S. live right down the hill. They could always go to them in an emergency. "Oh," said Edison "Would we go straight there, or should we pack a bag first?"
It's so nice to know that in the event of an emergency Edison's first thoughts would be whether or not he had clothing to take with him.
5.. I'm ready for the structure that school will bring to our days. And, I think my boys are ready for it too. We're just trying to enjoy these last couple weeks and to check a few last items off our Summer List. I hope you are enjoying the last bit of your summer as well!