Sunday, August 24, 2008

There's No Place Like HOME!

"The home is the bottom line of life, the anvil upon which attitudes and convictions are hammered out. [It is]... the single most influential force in our earthly existence. No price tag can adequately reflect its value. No gauge can measure its ultimate influence ... for good or ill. It is at home, among family members that we come to terms with circumstances. It is here life makes up its mind."
-- C. Swindoll



Beautiful Mountains!

Our New Home!

I know it's been a while since I've posted a blog...We have truly had a lot going on. Ben took the bar exam and we are still awaiting his results. The anticipation is nerve-racking. 2 days after he finished testing we moved back home from Burlington to Weaverville. We found a perfect house for us, nestled on close to 3 acres of land. Plenty of room for all of us and the junk we have accumulated over the years (which is all mine according to Ben). Anyway, Ted flew in from Miami and helped us, along with Ben's dad-- and it was all we could do to fit everything on a 26 foot truck. What didn't fit was given away to people on our street or sent to Goodwill and the landfill. I tried to give away as much as possible but when we were down to the last load of "stuff"...I finally caved and said "just throw it away!" I felt like was losing my mind by that point. Mostly because one week before the final transition home I was hanging a picture over our (unmounted) mantle and the bowed up piece of wood started to rock back and forth... as I grabbed the mantle before letting it fall-- all of the glass, porcelain and ceramic items placed there (out of the reach of Cajes) all came tumbling down and I ended up in the ER getting stitches-- which ended up getting infected --but anyway! Moving is such an overwhelming task!! I've told several people I'd rather sell a limb or an organ to pay someone to move us next time, than to have to do this again. It has taken us weeks to get settled in and we still have boxes unpacked in the basement that will just have to wait for a rainy day. But being back home is so rewarding that it has made up for the multiple misfortunes we ran into before we moved in. Now we have a horseshoe hung over our door in hopes of good luck and and angel outside in hopes of good blessings along the way.
Fortunately we are a very close family and we are able to find happiness wherever we are together...but being back in Asheville affords us so many more opportunities to be with our friends and family. It's a part of our life that was put on hold for three years and we are more than pleased to be back in the welcoming arms of people we love.

Last week was Ben's birthday and we celebrated with some folks--not only Ben's birthday--but the pure jubilation of being back in the mountains. It was such a joy for Ben and I, but the true gladness in my heart swells up when I see Cajes playing with his little friends... something he was mildly deprived of by being 200 miles away-- although he did travel with me and continue to attend pre-school.

Olive, Cajes and the turtle

Cajes and Olive painting

Cajes and Uncle Ted

It seemed like we were all waiting for the fireworks to begin or something....

Cajes, Sam & David, Olive & Lucy--right before Cajes leaned in to Jessie and said "this is the best picnic ever!"

The Francis Family

Lucy and Debbie

Liberty, Cajes, Olive and Ada

Kendall and Cajes picking a tune at our party--

"We are all longing to go home to some place we have never been - a place half-remembered and half-envisioned that we can only catch glimpses of from time to time. Community. Somewhere, there are people to whom we can speak with passion without having the words catch in our throats. Somewhere a circle of hands will open to receive us, eyes will light up as we enter, voices will celebrate with us whenever we come into our own power. Community means strength that joins our strength to do the work that needs to be done. Arms to hold us when we falter. A circle of healing. A circle of friends. Someplace where we can be free."

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Part of being back home is being able to go to the Farmer's Market on the island in Marshall on Sundays where EVERYTHING is either $1 or $2 a pound. We left today with fingerling potatoes, a Brandywine tomato, 2 green tomatoes, a loaf of homemade bread, a pound of green beans, squash, a pumpkin, and some chocolate chip cookies sold to raise money for the Obama "Hungry for Change" campaign.... It's always an interesting mix of folks down there....And in case you haven't been to Marshall in a while--it's been taken over by progressive artists and farming hippes. There's still a few country folk but for the most part Marshall has become a miniature and sub-compact downtown Asheville.

~For those interested Cajes was named after my Paw-Paw~

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Even better than the Farmer's Market is our close proximity to the Laurel River and it's trail. It is nice to spend only 10 minutes traveling to get to such natural beauty and it's practically in our backyard. It was a very short hike and a refreshing way to spend our Sunday afternoon.






P.S. (My mom--who keeps me in check-- brought it to my attention that I left out mentioning some integral people who helped us move once we got to this end of the travel. My awesome and wonderful parents came and basically decorated our whole house hanging every set of blinds and curtains and enjoyed our first dinner together in our new home. We had lots of friends and family that also showed up to help unload the truck which include but are not limited to my parents, Ben's parents, Ted, Heather & Keith, Monica & Beth, David & Sam, and my aunt Carol & cousin Chrystal who helped the week I cut my leg. And thanks to Beth who went out and cleaned tirelessly before we arrived to make sure it was ready when we got there! And to Monica who drove to Burlington the week before the move and packed her van as full as we could fit it, drove home and helped unload it and never cussed me once!)