Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Closing One Door, Opening Another ...

Bruce and I had a busy couple of weeks.  On Friday, May 30th, I picked him up from work with a car full of luggage and we started to head north towards Connecticut.  We stopped in Roanoke, VA for the night (which was BEAUTIFUL - I looked to see if there was a UCC church but it looks like there is a very small church which was only started two years ago - I doubt the pastor is ready to retire!!) and then got up and drove the rest of the way to CT.  It was a long drive.  As much as we love Atlanta, we don't realize how far away it is from our family until we start to travel to visit them.  It's not easy and I think it's something that we need to be reminded of when I start looking at churches in two years.

The next day we got up and went to church.  Miguel was preaching and I really wanted to see him.  He was wonderful as usual - he talked about what a blessing the church has been to the mission.  It's funny because when I think about Children's Rescue Mission I think about what a blessing they have been to us.  They've given people who didn't even have passports the opportunity to travel to the third world and to see devastation and poverty in a way that empowers them to find solutions.  Because Bruce and I are planning a wedding and I'm in school full-time for the next two years, I don't know when I'll be able to visit the village of Teupasenti again.  But I carry the children in my heart with me every day of my life.

After church we all piled in the car and went to the Candlewood Lake Inn for Chris and Pam's wedding.  It was absolutely beautiful.  The weather was perfect - sunny with white puffy clouds and a breeze so it wasn't hot.  The wedding was outside in front of a gazebo that was in front of the lake.  My mom performed the ceremony and it was short but sweet.  The reception was amazing.  It was the first time I had seen most of the people at the reception since Bruce and I got engaged so everyone asked about our wedding plans and I got to start thinking about what I wanted to do as well.  Bruce and I went out with Barbara and Ken after the ceremony, which was fun.  I was glad we got a chance to catch up with them and see how things were going on their house.

The next day Bruce and I got to work.  My parents had rented a dumpster while we were in town because their house had gotten a little bit cluttered and they're down-sizing when they move to Kent.  Collectively, we decided that we would get rid of the furniture in my old bedroom because, even though it had been through three generations, it wasn't in good condition.  The first thing Bruce and I did was bring that furniture into the dumpster and then went through odds and ends that we had found in the drawers and in my closet, throwing away some of it, donating some and putting aside some to come to Atlanta.  Once I saw my room a little bit more empty I decided the walls looked a mess so I spackled and painted.  I painted white so whoever buys the house will have a clean slate.  It's amazing what a coat of paint does to make a room look SO much better!!  We really got into the whole project after that.  We went through and emptied out my parents entire attic (they had boxes from computers they don't have anymore in it!!), went through the garage (the sailboat with the whole in the bottom finally got thrown away) and then got rid of some miscellaneous furniture.  At that point Bruce decided that the house would look a lot better if it was powerwashed so we went and rented a powerwasher - I didn't realize how powerful a tool they were!!  I didn't really get sentimental about anything until I was gettin ready to leave.  I looked in my room (at that point only my desk was left because we had thrown away the bed) and realized that if my parents sold the house within the next few months this would probably be the last time I was there.  Then I got sentimental.

We then drove down to Myerstown to spend some time with Bruce's family and watch Bruce's brother and cousin graduate from high school.  At the graduation, everyone in Bruce's family was reminiscing on their own graduations from the same place.  It made me think about how connected his family is, and how blessed I am to be loved and accepted by such a close-knit group of people.  We had a party for Jason and Amber on Saturday and got to see more of his family, which I was happy about.

It was sad to leave Myerstown, but we were ready to get home.  When did Atlanta become home?  I realized as we were driving south that I really am starting a new phase in my life.  Soon my parents house will really be my parents house, not the house that I grew up in.  When I drive to Atlanta (at least for the next two years) I'm driving home - to an apartment that I pay the bills for and a small family (Bruce, me and the cat!!).  I'm working towards a degree that will open the door to something I've felt called to for a very long time.  I'm marrying my best friend next year!!  So while it's sad to think that the door to my childhood and youth is closing, it's exciting to think about what is going on now and that the best is yet to come.

With Grace,
Sarah :)

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