1418; Car Accident Miracles

I started writing this Irving’s Count Up blog

because I wanted to remember

all the ways

all the days

that God showed up,

and reminded us in our marriage

of His provision

of His protection

of His love.

 

I wanted this blog to serve as reminder to Greg and me,

that this marriage thing we’re in together

( this crazy beautiful exhilarating challenging thing we’re in together

this thing that is choosing each other day after day,

this thing that we realized day one we had no idea what we were really getting ourselves into…)

-God was guiding us through all the days, right there with us,

each day of our count up.

 

The happy days, the sad days.

The fun days, the mundane days.

The easy breezy days, and the hard days.

That God was with us, in all of our days of this marriage thing.

 

Due to yesterday’s events, I find it very fitting and necessary to write.

 

Yesterday marked 1,418 days Greg and I have been married.

It also was the day, that on my way to pick up Greg from work

I got into an awful car accident.

The front of our car was hit head on as I was turning left

my car swerved right

the air bag deployed

the condition of the car- wrecked, completely totaled

the condition of me – safe, scratched, and bruised

the condition of baby- safe, unscathed, still dancing.

( after the accident we went to the hospital, both me and the baby were monitored for hours before being discharged.)

 

As I sit here a day later and reflect,

and as I laid in Greg’s arms last night reflecting…

I kept replaying the scenario in my head over and over again.

I kept wishing I could rewrite our story for the better, changing the narrative, and prevent the accident all together.

I kept apologizing to Greg for ruining our car.

But I don’t want that to be the narrative of day 1,418

When I remember yesterday…

I want to remember the kindness of a stranger Theresa (of all names) who calmed me, embraced me, and told me that God was with me and that my baby is strong like their mama.

I want to remember the EMT who was kind and comforting.

I want to remember the towing company who helped my husband search through the rubble this afternoon (after we cleaned out our totaled vehicle) for my charm on my charm bracelet that I received day one of our marriage that said number one wife that had broken of and all the charms had dispersed as it was broken off during the accident.

I want to remember:

-> Greg’s constant reassurance throughout this entire thing

-> Greg’s boss who drove him to the scene of the accident and coworkers who prayed for us.

-> our family who showed up and brought us milkshakes and made turkey balloons out of lavender gloves in the triage room

-> the friends who brought us dinner

-> the family/friends who called, texted,showed up and prayed

I want to remember the way that sometimes awful things that happen have a powerful way of reminding you of how loved you are,

 and how a stranger can show compassion and care long enough to soothe your shaky aching soul.

I want to remember the moment I stopped replaying how things could have been better, and started realizing how spared I was,

I want the narrative of day 1,418 to be how amidst the awful we found the good;

the provision

the protection

the love.

How if any of the variables were altered it could’ve been so much worse, had the car that hit me been going slower instead of as fast as it was or if I had been turning with more acceleration, the car that hit me could’ve hit my passenger door directly… which would have made it  go from an awful accident to a tragic one .

I want the narrative of this accident to be how God showed up yesterday,

right there with us as he has been every day of this marriage thing.

Yes, OF COURSE, immediately following the accident

I was shaking

It was scary

When Greg arrived on the scene he was sobbing

I was praying non stop for this baby of ours to do a little dance to signal it was all good

But thats not the whole story.

Telling just that part of the story, or just focusing on that part of the story,

robs us of the rich narrative that our 1,418th day of marriage tells.

I want to remember day 1,418 as a day we learned to tell the whole story.

And the whole story was this:

Despite the awful car accident we experienced today, we also experienced miracle after miracle.

God provided – strangers, families, and friends

God protected- my life and our baby’s life.

God loved- through the provision and the protection.

I think what happens when we come face to face with our mortality, and are forced to recognize the brevity of life…

we hold the ones we love a little closer, and all the trivial worries of days before fall to the wayside.

So as God provided, protected, and loved on us… and we faced our mortality and were forced to recognize the brevity of life...it freed Greg and me to do just that.

To hold each other closer, to appreciate our lives, and to appreciate the miracle of having people in our lives who show up and love us. 

Day 1,1418: Despite the awful thing we may experience in this life, there is miracle after miracle, and we make a choice in the narrative we tell.

This picture we today ( day 1,419) after we dealt with a bunch of post accident logistics. It was extra special being able to put the crib together today, just so thankful that both me and baby are alive and well.
(Greg asked me to post this picture too)

1403; London, England // Londres, Englaterra

Currently typing this in Bryann’s flat ( that’s how the Brits refer to their apartments) in London’s borough of Islington as he and Greg venture off to buy some groceries for dinner.

This whole pregnancy thing has really taught me how to listen to my body’s limits, because most of the time I like to be non-stop go go go, and recently my body and this baby have been saying slow-down no no no.

Like Dwight says in the office this little fetus is calling the shots*.

It’s so bad ass.

All that to say, as they venture off to Salinsbury’s for groceries I rest, kick up my feet, and write.

Now that I think of it… it’s not too bad of a gig, thank you baby Irving.

Hard to believe our long anticipated trip to London is almost over ( I use the wording “long anticipated” lightly since we only decided to come to London 3 weeks ago).

Even harder to believe Bryann loves cooking, and is looking forward to cooking us dinner.

Regardless of whether I believe it or not, both are true.

Tonight is our last night in London, and Bryann has really grown to enjoy cooking and is eager to cook us up a delicious meal.

We have done our fair share of sightseeing and taste testing our way through London.

Our first day in London began roughly around 1:30pm after arriving at London Gatwick Airport and taking the National Express Bus to Victoria Station.

( Yes for those of you following along our brief international expedition we made it through the struggle of the 18 hour layover. Read more about how we were bored here and about our layover algae masks and Pylsur’s here)

After taking the hour and a half bus ( which was well worth it only 24 pounds round trip for both of us ) we walked 7.1 miles to see as many cliche tourist sights we could until we would meet up with Bryann at his apartment around 5.

Once we arrived in London at Victoria Station our tummy’s were rumbling so we split an order of Fish and Chips along Buckingham Palace road…

then made our way to Buckingham Palace…

and the Victoria Memorial.

From there we began our promenade through St. James Park

to arrive at Westminster Abbey where we took a much needed walk break and found the shade of an oak tree to sit under in a little park in front of Westminster Abbey.

After Westminster Abbey we made our way to Houses of Parliament and Palace of Westminster…

and then made our way to Big Ben only to discover he was under construction!

Greg took this very well. I would have been so annoyed. He made a joke about wanting a refund and then with such understanding said ” I get it, history needs to be preserved”. What a guy.

Then we leisurely made our way across the Westminster Bridge lookin out at the Thames River enjoying the breeze sunshine and each other.

Then… the heat from the sun, weight from our backpacks, and aches in our feet from long day of travel began to get to us

and we argued about whether to take the tube to Bryann’s

or walk 45 minutes to get there.

We disagreed all along the Thames as we made our way towards the front of the London Eye, then laid in the Jubilee Garden to make amends .

Conflict resolution doesn’t take a holiday.

When going on an international adventure with the love of your life make sure to pack the realistic expectation that a disagreement can arise at any moment and the sooner it’s dealt with the sooner you can get back to enjoying your holiday.

( instead of vacation the English say holiday so I’m trying to plug in British jargon any chance I get)

In fact they can and usually will heighten when hot tired and achey.

But Greg and I are no strangers to butting heads.

We disagree,

we openly communicate our frustrations ( not always with tact and grace)

we get down to the root of the issue

we take a breather

we both admit our feelings and our shortcomings

then we reconcile and resolve, we go about the rest of our day.

Which on this day included us laying in the grass for a few moments (after we made up) to rest look up at the sky and the London Eye,

before physically getting up and acting on the decision we came to together:

to head over to the Waterloo Station

to buy our Oyster cards

so that we could take the Underground to Bryann’s. ( the local’s call it the tube)

Here’s the kicker though.

After feeling so official with our Oyster cards and navigating our way through the tubes, when we finally arrived in Bryann’s neighborhood and address… he wasn’t there!

We waited half an hour to give him time to commute from his job and nothing.

Greg took a walk around the block several times

just to see if there were any nearby cafes that we could wait for him…nope.

We waited and waited.

His neighbor showed up and let us use his phone to call Bryann.

No response.

So there we were siting outside his apartment hot aching tired hungry cranky…

We sat and laid on his stoop with our backpacks and sore feet

for what seemed like forever after a 19 hour layover and then sightseeing all day

but it was only an hour and a half.

With one of us pregnant…

and fed up

and decided she couldn’t wait any longer.

One of us decided to say

” That’s it! Bryann’s not coming back. He forgot about us.

Our baby and me are not sleeping on this stoop.

I’m going to a hotel.”

…okay okay so that was me

Not my best moment.

But I was so over waiting a moment longer so I stormed off.

Greg had the good sense to follow after his wife

even though he found it foolish that I stormed off,

He knew it would be even more foolish to just let his wife storm off with out a way of contacting her in this foreign country.

I didn’t know where I was going…

I just needed to go… to take matters into my own hands and get in touch with him, find wi-fi on my own, no more waiting!

I had to try to find a way to contact Bryann.

And sure enough in the following me…

Greg managed to access wi-fi.

In that very spot of the street where he stopped to communicate with me…

and ease my angst.

He was able to communicate with Bryann.

Jokes on me …Bryann recommended us go to a particular coffee shop with free wi-fi and wait for him there.

Greg and I made our hot-achey-tired selves way over to the cafe.

And I am no runner so I can’t say for certain,

but the moment Bryann arrived in that coffee shop it felt like a second wind.

Bryann began to prepare us dinner, Brucie arrived from Northern England, and Greg & I enjoyed our first evening in London in Bryann’s flat over a delicious home cooked meal.

Oh my gracious can I just say how after long longlong hours of travel

how grateful we were

for the refreshing wonders a fresh cooked meal, comfortable bed, cool breeze,

and lush comfoter does!

Speaking of which, and going full circle, this evenings meal is now ready!

So I will have to fill you all in on the rest of our adventures of Day 2, 3, and 4 of London some other time.

Until then, stay tuned!

Cheers Mate,

Thressa and Greg Irving

* the quote Dwight says verbatim for you office lovers out there

If she eats something the fetus doesn’t like, she is screwed.

It’s amazing: a three ounce fetus is calling the shots. It’s so bad ass.”

P.S.

Just thought I should let you know that right now Greg is glowing because he just found a dubbed version of The Office in Portuguese, which I have no doubt be the game changer and dramatically enhance his ability to speak Portuguese.

1402; Algae Masks & Pylsur’s

Around 5 o’clock our time and 1 o’clock in the states (it’s about 4 hours time difference in the states) Greg and I decided to stretch our legs some to explore the airport a bit.

We had already familiarized ourselves with the general lay out, scoped out the location of the futuristic washrooms and staked out a cozy resting space to claim as our own.

We, after streamlining through the several eateries filling the air with the alluring aroma of hot savory cooked meals, stumbled into the airport’s Duty Free Gift Shop

*mind you at this point we had been consuming only Cliff bars, Lara Bars and Kind bars…. so naturally our mouths were watering at the smell of real food…thus the streamlining*

We enjoyed seeing Icelandic beer, lava salt, their adorable national bird the puffin ( in stuffed animal form), Icelandic candy, Iceladic wool sweaters along with other Icelandic handcrafted goods.

Perhaps the most relaxing part of this little promenade was The Blue Lagoon portion of The Duty Free Shop. The Blue Lagoon is a lava field in Grindavik on the Reykjanes Peninsula located in Southwestern Iceland. It geothermal waters are rich in minerals like silica. Greg and I will be going to the ACTUAL Blue Lagoon on the last leg of our trip.

But today, we went to the Blue Lagoon portion of The Duty Free Gift Shop.
There were various Blue Lagoon products for sale as well as samples available.
What particularly caught my eye were the Blue Lagoon Masks labeled try me.
Mud Mask, Silica Mask, and Algae Mask.

Between the 3 I chose to sample the algae mask because the other two were included in our package during our ACTUAL Blue Lagoon Visit.
I jumped right in and began applying the mask to my face.

Greg was mortified at first, but the bottle did say try me and in order to “Try Me” properly I needed to test run the algae mask. Then I further made a case for myself by saying “Greg if they didn’t want you to try it and fully apply the mask to your face, why would they have conveniently placed this sink and mirror right here”?

Logic is always my weapon of choice when it comes to convincing Greg to do anything he’s initially hesitant of.

He can’t resist logic.

And with that use of logic,next thing you know he’s joining in and applying his own Blue Lagoon (airport edition) algae mask.

Then all of a sudden the representatives of the store call security on us for using the free samples of the algae mask! We were escorted out of the gift shop!

Nah just kidding, but can you imagine what a story that would be?!

I will say this our faces felt so refreshed after that algae mask experience, that I am even more so excited to experience the real thing on Friday with Greg!

After washing our faces from the algae masks we ventured off to find a new resting place to switch up the scenery.
Corner cushioned seats facing a map of Iceland felt like such a victory!
We napped, watched Despicable Me 2, and then it was time.

One of my favorite times of day.

Dinner time.

For dinner we decided to grab Pylsur’s.

Apparently Iceland is famous for their hotdogs.

I’m not kidding

It just happened to also be the most budget friendly eating option in the airport,
so win win.

Icelandic hotdogs are made with free range, grass finished, hormone free, Icelandic lamb meat.

They were served on a warm steamed bun with raw onions, crispy fried onions, Pylsusinnep ( a sweet brown mustard ), Remoulade ( a sauce that is made with capers, mayo, mustard, and herbs) and of course ketchup!

It did not disappoint at all they were very tasty and the perfect dinner to kickoff our international adventure!

Thankful to get such a delicious taste of Iceland without hurting the wallet.

I’ve actually included some pictures of the Pylsur’s we ate as well of the Remoulade, Pysusinnep, and the lamb meat sausages!
So if anybody wants to me to bring the Icelandic Hot Dog experience home so they can partake in the delicacy just let me know.

In the meantime we’ll be here.

Face’s refreshed.

Bellies satisfied.

With only 6 hours remaining to this layover people =) !

Then look out London here we come!

Stay Tuned,
Thressa & Greg… and Baby Irving

1402; Being Bored is Good For You

Growing up with 3 brothers we were often aprontando.

A Portuguese word that was a regular part of my parents vocabulary.

Aprontando, it meant we were up to something, specifically something that we shouldn’t be.

Something that more often than not would get us into trouble.

On rare occasions, when we weren’t aprontando we were doing something else.

Something that we in present day society don’t practice too much.

Something I’ve found we avoid at all costs and don’t allow ourselves to be .

Bored.

I remember as a child saying to my Mãe, “ Mãe eu tou bored”.

And she would just go about her business quickly stating in Portuguese “ Good, being bored is for you. Be bored”.

I remember feeling like that’s your advice ? What a rip off!

As a child I never understood how in the world being bored was good for you and why my querida mamãe was telling me this.

Fast forward to present day.

Greg and me right now.

Sitting in the Keflavik Airport on our 18 hour layover.

Yes 18 long… slow…boring hours.

And it is so good for us.

Not fun.

Just good.

Here’s why; life is full of long slow and boring so we might as well get used to it.

I personally love to run from one fun adventure to the next…

( I suppose I never quite grew out of the whole aprontando thing.)

 but I’ve learned when we rush out on boredom we miss out on being.

Sometimes we just have to be bored.

When we are bored we face awkward lulls head on.

We stare at walls.

Look up at the sky.

People watch.

Contemplate.

{ ^ That’s the hardest/bravest one for me.

To just BE  left alone with my thoughts, giving them the airtime the need and not just washing them out or watering them down with whatever form of entertainment I choose to occupy myself with (ranging from scrolling on social media to burying myself in my reading). That requires a lot of will power from me,but every time I choose to confront my contemplations when I’m bored, I usually end up breathing a little lighter. I feel more in touch with myself and sometimes it leads to a fantastic side effect of boredom…creating. For example, creating this blog posts after sitting in my thoughts and contemplating for a good hour and a half).

Don’t get me wrong.

I THRIVE off the moments in life that are fast paced, gallivanting from one adventure to the next.

Spontaneous, adrenaline rush seeking, quenching my wanderlust even if just a little moments are my JAM.

Whenever I can I try to fill my life and our marriage with moments like these.

But you want a glimpse into our real every day life?

You want to know what sustains and strengthens making the adventures richer and worthwhile?

It’s a whole lot of :

the slow.

the boring.

the mundane.

It’s the taking turns sleeping on each others laps on the plane during our overnight flight.

It’s Greg searching high and low throughout the airport for water fountains for me because I was parched after our overnight flight …only to discover there are none, so he returns with a tall disposable plastic cup of Icelandic Tap water.

( yes it was some of the best,if not THE BEST, tap water I’ve ever had)

It’s thinking about our dog, how much we miss her and wish we could get her a passport to bring her here with us

It’s filling up our bags with Cliff,Kind, and Lara bars… only to discover  I was not a fan of the cranberry almond Kind bar, but thankfully the chocolate peanut butter Lara bar was much more appetizing.

It’s Greg sleeping on my lap with my scarf covering his eyes because of the massive skylights that pour natural light into this Icelandic airport and me staring at the wall and sky trying to make sense of my thoughts as I sit here…with my thoughts facing boredom head on like a boss… on this now 16 hour lay over.

We are thankful for this trip, it’s going to be so much fun,

but in the meantime it’s not.

In the meantime it’s boring.

It’s boring, but its good.

As you follow our blog posts as we travel to England and Iceland, let me reiterate, don’t be deceived.

There is plenty of slow and boring and mundane in our life as well as marriage.

We need it all.

The boring. The slow. The mundane.

Somehow it wonderfully manages to sustain and strengthen our lives and marriages making

The fun. The fast. The adventure

richer and more worthwhile.

Enjoy these pictures of Greg and me on our trip so far,including some snapshots of our boring 18 hour layover.

Because sometimes life is slow and boring,

and that is a freaking sweet gift.

I encourage you to be bored today, don’t rush out of it just SIT IN IT, be bored!

Stare at a wall. Look up at the sky. Contemplate.

After all like my Mãe was trying to teach me so many moons ago;

being bored is good for you.

(Also baby Irving has been kicking while Ive been typing away sharing my heart.  I’m taking that as a secret baby signal to keep writing about our trip and sharing it here on Irving’s Count Up blog.)

Stay Tuned,

Thressa & Greg… and Baby Irving

House Cooling; 953

This time last year we were surrounded by friends, family, and coworkers for our housewarming party.

We had officially purchased our first home,
and were eager to celebrate that major life event,
and desperate to plant roots here in Lancaster.Our housewarming party set the tone for what we wanted to accomplish in having a home;
a safe place,
a fun place,
a let the tears flow & the laughter burst forth freely place,
a refreshing for your soul kinda place,
with great food and even better cake.

And that’s what is has been.
It’s been a hard year, but a wonderful year .This home has served as a refuge in the storm,
a constant retreat amidst every day life and the stressors that try to creep their way in.

The walls of this home saw so much of our dreams, our ugly, our hopes, our tears, our successes, our anger, our fears, our laughter.

This home provided a warmth, a peace, a stability
among the cold, chaos, and change.

Sometimes in order to pursue better things, it means having to let go of something already great.


This home was working for us.
Easily our best move to date.
We loved our home, I found a job that made me come alive, we found our favorite eateries, our favorite stores, parks, rivers for our dog to swim in, and we found a church with a community of people that was all about what we were searching for: making friends, connecting to Jesus, and changing lives.

Then what our dear friend Suzy calls the stirring started to happen.

And when the stirring begins,
you either go with its flow or its a never ending battle of swimming upstream.


Because you see the best place in the world becomes the worst place in the world, if the timing is off.
Likewise with relationships, the “right person” in the wrong timing,  becomes the wrong person.
It’s not a place it’s the timing.
It’s not a person it’s the timing.
Timing is everything.

Ever since I was a little girl and heard the scripture about there being a season for every activity,
how there is a time for everything,
I had a grip… even if ever so slight, that everything has its proper time,

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;

 

a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;


a time to kill, and a time to heal;

 

a time to break down, and a time to build up;

4

a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

5

a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

6

a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

7

a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

8

a time to love, and a time to hate;

 

a time for war, and a time for peace.” ( Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)

Sometimes we are to cry, sometimes we are dance, sometimes we are to stay,
& sometimes we are to go.

My prayer is for you is this,
 may the fear of the unknown never keep you from responding to the stirring.

As I’ve adulted I’ve learned that in all times we are to be attentive to the stirring.

Backtracking a bit, telling the full story, far more then the original post I intended on writing,
but hey the timing is right, so instead of “a bit” I’m backtracking A BUNCH.Early December Greg started to feel this stirring, this place that he was intending on staying working for for the next 10 years of his life, began to not feel right.

The best place becomes the worst place when the timing is off.


This place that over a year ago solidified the prompting we felt to purchase our first home because of how right the timing was then, began to shift.

It was as if this imaginary clock was ticking, and Greg was becoming increasingly more aware of how the time stamp was sooner rather then later.

It was as if the top half of the hour glass for working where he did was covered and had now finally been revealed to him.

A time that God knew all along, but Greg was finally seeing just how much sand was left in this hourglass of working where he was.

Greg found himself more and more uneasy with staying working there, and with no future job prospect in line, he responded to this stirring and he quit.

Make no mistake,my husband is very logical.
He crosses his t’s and dots his i’s.
Every action he makes is very purposeful, very methodical, and he calculates everything.
He’s the make your bed every morning kinda guy,
the buttons on the duvet need to be in this place at all times.
Whenever we travel anywhere the route we take is always the most efficient and relative to our purpose in getting to said destination.

So this move was very much out of character, but simultaneously very in character.

Because I’ve seen more and more with every decision,
how he’s developing his character to incorporate God’s calculations.

How responding to the stirring supersedes his inclination for the logical,
 because he wants to operate in obedience to the giver of  logic.


Timing changes something that was once SO right at one point, and makes in not right a year later.

Likewise, in early December I felt a stirring, it began with me loving my job.
Feeling so alive when I taught my students so I began to toy around with the idea of getting certified in education.

As I shared this with a friend of mine who’s known me for years, after she listened, she – with some kind of supernatural gentleness- suggested I consider getting my Masters in Education.
That’s not intended to be sarcastic, it may read like that but I wasn’t defensive nor did it sound like another person telling me what I should do, it was a suggestion that I couldn’t shake.
She spoke so much life into me into that brief conversation, encouraging me to consider her words and take it to Jesus praying about it.

Let it be known since I was first given the opportunity as a child to teach in Sunday school or Vacation Bible School, I knew I loved working with children and had such ease in doing so.
It was a gift that I knew I had, but often fought or diminished. In fact I ran from it. I did things here and there that worked with children, I volunteered teaching ESLto adults,& I enjoyed them for sure, but otherwise I never took it seriously. I never considered a career in teaching.
My maturity, mindset, stubbornness if you will wasn’t there yet.
The timing wasn’t right.

I wanted to do BIG things with my life.
I wanted to GO places and BE somebody.
And through a lot of trial and error,
various moments throughout the years of swimming upstream,

–  applying to several other Grad schools for several other majors,
getting in, touring the campus, and this stirring of none of it sitting well with me
despite my desire to further my education,
despite my best efforts, the degree I was pursuing
(University of Pittsburgh for Social Work,
Gordon-Conwell & Fuller Theological Seminary for my Masters of Divinity,
Eastern University for International Development) never felt right –

this year as I taught these little kids I realized they were the BIG,
as I went there and taught them day after day they were my GO,
and as I fell in love with being there with them I found my BE.

So that night after that gentle nudge from my friend to pursue my going to grad school for education, that stirring tussled my heart.
I can fall asleep anywhere, anytime, basically on command.
But not that night, no.
I tossed and I turned, and I couldn’t shake this grad school thing.
But at this point I was over it.
I was OVER applying to grad schools, getting in , touring the campus’, for what?
For it all to be for not?
Getting my hopes up just so they could be knocked back down?
Nope.
I did not want to go down that road again.
I was cranky. And I didn’t want to bother.
So I lay there with my grumpy face on, as Greg was in deep sleep probably in his second rem cycle,  I had a private conversation with the Lord.
My version of a Gideon’s blanket if you will.
That night after tossing and turning, I prayed a prayer.
I said,
” God I do not want to go through this process again.
You know full well how I’ve always wanted to further my education.
And I’ve tried and tried and tried on my own account, several times, and it never panned out
because I couldn’t ever shake how none of them felt right.
It had to be you, shutting it down.
You know the me getting carried away with my own thing each time,
I’m done swimming upstream it’s exhausting.
Please dont tease me with the prospect of going back to school, just to get my hopes crushed.
Please God make it CLEAR to me Jesus.
Send a book, a song, a person SOMETHING my way.
MAKE IT CLEAR, cause I’m done playing games
pursuing anything other than where you want me and when you have it for me.
I’m not going after this unless you send me the green light.
Like all up in my face cant miss it,
“HEY THIS IS THE ANSWER TO YOUR PRAYERS
apply to this schools grad program for education” green light.

The next day we were walking through Colonial Williamsburg with our friend and their children.
A regular part of our visits when we’re visiting this family in Williamsburg,
 and right there in the ordinary, is when God showed up and made 
a regular walk down old dirt roads extraordinary.


“Thressa?!?!” I heard suddenly and quickly looked up (because I was just looking down as I walked Lady thinking about how cute she is).

” I didn’t see you first I saw your husband, and then your dog which I only know from insta, but agh I AM SO HAPPY TO SEE YOU”!

Who is this mystery woman? Well several years ago… maybe like 6-7 years ago?
We were really close.
Her sister had come up from Virginia to do a missions trip at our church in Jersey and I got really close to her sister, her and in turn got close to her family. They welcomed me into their home and loved me so well. Then with time we just grew apart and lost touch.
But it was SO FUN to see her, there was the biggest smile on my face as memories with her family came flooding back. A part of me that Greg never knew, they knew and welcomed.

” Cindy ! Agh It’s so good to see you wow this so crazy! Wait … what are you doing here? Don’t you live in Virginia Beach” I responded as I noticed how she -years later- continues to be put together as ever, but this time she is adorned in this forest green scarf. And then I notice that the scarf is also yellow.

And as the words roll off of her tongue I begin to realize what just happened and all I can think
is ” OH CRAP.”

“I’m an admissions counselor at the College of William & Mary” she said.

We hugged each other big and briefly caught up then she went about her way and we went about ours, but it goes without saying but I will anyway,she was my green light that day.

It may not be enough evidence for you, but it was very to clear to me.
And as soon as we went our separate ways I turned to Greg and said
“Oh crap we’re moving to Virginia”.

Timing is everything. 
I did not, nor could I have, planned to run into this girl I had not seen for years.
In fact I did not see her.
She saw Greg and Lady, then found me and made her way over.
I had no clue what she was up to or where she was living.
She was just going about her business that day,
she came over to me,
and without her having any notion of the life change that was about to happen,
she, reppin’ the W& M school colors hard in her green and yellow scarf,
was the answer to the “all up in my face” prayer  I had made the night before.

Each step along the way has seemed like an overbearing obstacle that God has managed to knock down seamlessly.

What?! I need to take a Praxis Core test to get in ? Agh but I only have two weeks to study in order for my results to be submitted in time for the schools application deadline?!?!
‘That’s not enough time’ I told myself as I freaked out yet reluctantly + obediently gave it my all, burrying my head in the Praxis Core for Dummies book
while my brothers and Greg were watching movies over Christmas break.

That test seemed like an insurmountable obstacle, with terrible odds,
‘there’s no way’
‘it’s not enough time’
‘ people don’t often pass their first time’
‘if I fail I have to wait till next year to apply’
but I PASSED.
Green light.
It’s not about enough time, it’s about the right time.


And the people in my corner.
Giving their time.
To write and send out recommendation letters in time.
To help me grammar check my admissions essay.
Praying for me.
Praying for us.
Greg had never felt a peace about me going back to school,
but THIS TIME.
This time he couldn’t explain it but he was so at peace about all the open end-eds and he spurred me on.

Which leads to where my post was originally going to go.
I broke the news to my job immediately upon getting accepted into W&M, that I would be finishing up the school year, but not returning so that I could get my M.Elem Ed. and they reacted far better than I could have anticipated. They were sad to see me go, but grateful that their school was part of my story -how amazing is that -and that I wanted to better myself by pursuing my graduate degree in education.
Green light.

In moving to Virginia in May, we decided we  had to let go of something great – our 801.
Our oasis of a home.
We prayed and prayed because selling a home we’ve heard can be a long arduous process.
So only prayer was that we would break even and not owe any money.
Our realtor was prompting us to get moving in the process of selling it because ‘the market was hot’ but like what actually does that mean? I mean yes I’ve heard that on HGTV and it’s cute and all, but how true is that? Well apparently, much like I’ve learned in our lives, in the real estate market TIMING IS EVERYTHING!

We put our house on the market on Friday March 10th 2017,
– 5 years after our first date-
and received above our requested offer on Saturday March 11th.Timing people, Timing is everything.

We were flabbergasted, awestruck, and thankful.
We absolutely consider it to be a modern day miracle.
And it continues.
There are still obstacles, but among them there are still miracles.Obstacles make room for miracles.

And I say this because there are still open end-eds we face.
Where will Greg work in Virginia? Where will we live in Virginia?
Will I be able to handle the courseload? What will happen with financial aid?
I  put our lives out therefor you reader.
Transparent and step by step.
For you  to see there are still so many unknowns that lie ahead.
Truly my answers to all of those questions above are,
I don’t know.

But we’re following the stirring.
We’re following the giver of logic and the maker of time.
We’re making room for his timing, and viewing the obstacles as a chance to make room for miracles.

 

So without further adieu, we’ve gleaned so incredibly much from Lancaster.
Living in Lancaster (and in this home especially) has refined us
and we leave Lancaster far better off  then as we were when we first entered it.It’s time to prepare to say farewell to our 801 oasis, and what better way than a housecooling.

You see right now our home is a disheveled hot mess with storage bins, packing paper, and bubble wrap everywhere.
But these photos are before the fact.
These photos were taken the Thursday before our home went up for sale, so we’d like to officially and for most likely the last time welcome you into our home, our 801.
Enjoy the photos and HAPPY HOUSE COOLING.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 living in this house moments:
  1. Moving In
  2. Lady. + Speedy.
  3. Developed a lifelong friendship with Steph Raj.
  4. Restoring a lifelong friendship with Devon Key
  5. Christmas at 801. / Our house decked out for Christmas
  6. Greg turned 25 here + I turned 25 here.
  7. I fell in love with teaching.
  8. Granite counter tops, open concept, high ceilings, the front porch,
  9. Our friends and family who helped make this house a home, and didn’t hesitate to make the time for us, whether you lived close by or make the trip out to see us, the time you’ve made for us has taught us quality over quantity any day of the week .
  10. Selling