Thursday, September 30, 2010

Times Are Changing...

Do you like things to change, or stay the same? I suppose I'm prefer a little of both, but I have experienced an enormous amount of change in my 40 some years. The way God has orchestrated my life has led to a potpourri of experiences giving me a wealth of memories. Sometimes along the way, I have detested moving into empty houses, the lonliness, new churches and schools, unknown streets. However, the change of scenery also gave excitement as well.

What I am facing right now is another major change. We are ready for the remodel to begin on our house. This week, my husband Mike delivered our construction plans to the city, along with the PLAT. (did you know what a "plat" is? it is a basic sketch of the property lines, with the building outlines included) We wait for the city's approval and permit, then the "fun" begins. I will try and post pictures along the way.

What's included with this phase? I suppose I can tell you what I expect to happen, but since I've never lived through a remodel, I would only be guessing. Here is my take:
1. ground breaking
2. foundation poured for new part of building
3. air conditioning added to accomodate the new square footage
4. framing for new addition
5. finishing the new addition
6. my current kitchen being torn up, and new one built (this will take several weeks, at least, I'm thinking)
7. whatever else happens is my guess
If you are someone who would like to come for a will have to wait. Our house is small enough already, but while we are stretching our boundaries, the little bit of current space we do have is going to be limited. It is probably a good thing that Elizabeth and Rachel are away at college. Less people to trip and fall over each other! Thanksgiving is going to be spent out of town. Not sure what we will do for Christmas. I'm ready for the ride, though!

There are so many things I could worry about, but I'm going to try to not do that. One time, I heard that our lives could be compared to a patchwork quilt. Sounds corny, true. But consider this...with God as the artist, He has a design for each one of our lives. With our limited human vision, we may only see one patch, or a few stitches at a time...maybe even the back side of a few patches, stitched together, which isn't usually very attractive. But when it is all finished, it will be just as God planned it, and beautiful.

Considering my "quilt theory," I'm of the opinion that this remodel is another patch (or two or three) in the project of my life. I am happy that God has my future in His hands. Even through potential difficulties, He still has a plan for my welfare.

Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope."

I sincerely hope that you have had the pleasure of resting in God's plan for your life. It's not always easy, but it sure does take the worry out of life!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Beginning of the Journey...

I'm not sure if this blog will benefit any of you out there, but I'm sure that it's therapy for me.

To begin this story, I would like to reveal a little about myself to those who are politely reading --My husband Mike and I have been married for a little more than 22 years. Most of those years have been spent in a nomadic-type lifestyle, since Mike was active duty with the United States Air Force. We have spent those days, weeks, months and years dragging our beloved possessions from one place to the other. Honestly, most of the time, other people were doing the moving for us. With the military lifestyle, we have always tried to make our house our home, but it was always a temporary resting point. Some places we bought a home, some places we rented. But there was always the thought that we either didn't have the money or time to fix up our "home" the way we really wanted it to be. That mindset has changed recently.

Mike finished his years with the Air Force this last October, and we have made the decision to stay in Virginia. It is a little different when one has been moving on every 2-4 years to come to the realization that you are not going anywhere. Now, when I say "different," that's not necessarily a bad thing. In our case, I am most definitely looking forward to being a regular "civilian" (military talk), and putting down roots.

The house Mike and I are living in now with our family has been ours since 2006. We love the location, because it is in a quiet neighborhood at the end of a cul-de-sac, with woods on one side, and a spring-fed pond in the back. Very relaxing. We have great neighbors, too!

In the last 2 years, Mike and I have begun to do things for our house that we probably wouldn't have done if we knew we were moving on. Things such as grounding and modernizing all of the electrical outlets in the house, sprucing up the 2 story barn in the backyard. Just recently, we had the chimney inspected, and found that it had some hazardous cracks in the flue. We took the time to fix that as well.

I'm not sure why it makes me feel this way, but I'm feeling more connected with those around me, because I know that it is our plan to stay here in Newport News. It gives me a sense of actually having a "homestead," instead of a "place to live." Does anyone out there know what I'm talking about? A few months from now, we will have lived longer in one place than we have anywhere else in our married life. Could it be that I actually belong here?

For the future, we plan on starting with redoing our one full bath in our 1100 square foot home. That project will start in a few short weeks. Who knows how many days we will be without a bathtub or shower? (I plan on posting pictures of the project) By the way, can we rent anyone's bathroom during those days?

Soon after that project is done, we hope to do an addition to the house, including a family room and a master suite, in addition to that,a rennovated kitchen. For right now, we plan on doing it in 2 steps. First, the family room and kitchen rennovation. The last step will be to add on the master suite.

I've heard that the beginning of a buiding project like this is the toughest part of a rennovation. All of the ground work has to be done thoroughly and correctly, or the project could be a complete wreck. During this entire planning process, God has stressed to me that it is very important for me to have the proper foundation for my life, and to continue to fortify it with making the right kind of choices, based on what God says. To finish today's post, I will leave you with this Scripture:

I Corinthians 3: 10-11 "According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ."