Friday, January 9, 2015

Fancy Mice and bouncy houses


School was cancelled today because the windshield was 23 degrees below zero.  That’s a bit crazy if you ask me.  But I guess it’s only crazy because I have decided that it is.  The positives of this cold weather result in me bundling up and putting the seat warmer on.  Tea sounds better than ever.  Right now, I am sitting at an indoor play zone with my nephew and niece.  There are bouncy houses and slides and they are all sweaty and enjoying themselves to the max.  I expect that in a few minutes they will come to me to let me know that they are hungry.  I guess that the soda and doughnuts that they had a bit ago will not satisfy the demands placed upon them by running and jumping.  They will undoubtly need more nutrition.  I am thinking that we can pick up a movie at Redbox and go home to something a bit more healthy than what they have had thus far with their Aunt Kimmy.  It’s been 9 days since I have landed.  And it has been delightful and rich and everything in between.  And I won’t lie.  I’ve paused and I’ve wondered.  Shouldn’t the transition be more hard?  Shouldn’t It be a bit more of a struggle?  Remembering that the flusher is not on the top of the toilet seems to be the biggest challenge.  Multiple times, I have tried to turn on the turn signal with the wrong hand.  I’ve also had to remember that I can leave the water running as I wash the dishes.  Neither do I have to leave them in the sink until there’s enough to justify using water.  The feel of carpet between my toes has been a real treat and the look of frosted windows from the cover of a heated blanket is delightful.  This morning before we snacked on doughnuts and soda, we went to the pet store.  Yes, that was a bit of something.   An entire store completely dedicated to animals.  Within the four walls of that store you could find pretty much everything and anything related to animals.  Want a santa outfit for our dog?  No worries.  A large cage for your bird?  No problem! We spent a good amount of time looking at the animals.  There were lizards, fish, and a variety of birds.  And tucked into the cages were “fancy” mice and “fancy” rats.  I have to admit that I am still figuring out what makes a rat or a mouse fancy.  I studied the rat closely . It looks a lot like the rat that my friend Eric killed for me last year.  It dIdn’t seem particularly fancy to me.  I am assuming it’s a selling tactic.  I also saw a chameleon.  It could be all mine for $99 dollars. 
I smiled as I thought of my friend Beth who had a pet chameleon.  According to the pet store, taking care of a chameleon involves advanced skills.  I would agree with that assessment.  They seem fragile in Uganda and they surely look fragile in the petstore.  There was also a python tucked into a small cage.  I have to confess I felt a bit sorry for it.  But, on the positive, it was alive.  Had I come across a python back home, I would have killed it.  And oh, how I have grown in that area.  A year ago, the thought of killing an animal left me nervous and unsure.  Now, I realize that it just just a part of life.   And so, here I continue to sit.  I’ve gone on a bit of a ramble.  To be honest, there isn’t a huge purpose on all that I have just written.  Except that it’s a bit of a glimpse into my life.  A life that has one foot on one continent and another foot  in another.  It seems that wherever I am, I just shift so that the majority of my body is in the place
where I am currently.  The foot never seems to leave the place where it is planted.  Right or wrong, I do not know.   Staying connected with friends a family… a high priority.  And so today, I smile as I look at the chameleon in a small cage peering through the window at me.  He looks a lot like the chameleon back home in Uganda.  I celebrate the differences of their environment and somehow connect to the reality of a species living in two different worlds.   Two different worlds that are so different.  And yet both carry the richness of deep relationships and sweetness.   And so I keep one foot in each.  Embracing today and remembering.  Embracing today and knowing that chameleons and fancy rats are just the surface level aspects of diving into rest, rejuvenation, and processing.  

Friday, January 2, 2015

Living each moment to the fullest....

Hello from Fort Wayne, Indiana! It's a brisk cool day and I am sitting at the local coffee shop.  Today, I got behind the wheel and drove from destination A to destination B.  I was a bit nervous driving on the other side of the road.  A few times, I went to put on the turn signal...only to realize that I was trying to do so on the wrong side.  It's crazy how what has been normal for so many years can quickly become different and require conscious thought and effort.  I am thankful that there is no snow on the ground.  The trunk with most of my clothes didn't quite make it from Entebbe to Fort Wayne.  The message that we received on Wednesday was that it couldn't be located.  Without basic essentials, I took to the store on Wednesday.  It was a bit daunting to be honest.  Racks and Racks of clothes and a mind that was confused with the haziness that comes with jet lag.  At one point, I just asked my friend to pick some stuff out for me.  It was the quickest trip to Kohl's and within a short time, I had what I needed.  Later on, I met up with a bunch of friends.  Out of respect for the kids and for a friend in the throws of jet lag, we rang in the new year at 8:30 PM.  We shared goals for the upcoming year and sipped a variety of drinks. I chose Root Beer.  My goal for 2015?  To write.  A personal goal?  To make a big dent in writing a book.  How and what that looks like?  I do not know.  I just know that God has given me 4 months at home in the States.  That's a whole lot of time to be with friends and family.  A whole lot of time to rest.  A whole lot of time to spend with Jesus.  And a whole lot of time to bring fingers to the keyboard.  I'll aim on writing to an audience of One and see what happens.  Yes,  it is a goal.  But, I also see it as a posture of the heart.  What comes out, I do not know.  I just know that I am committing to writing a whole lot more.  In the last few days, I have enjoyed eating pickles, drinking Russian tea, and root beer.  I've sat with my friends and laughed.  And I've thought of my friends and family back home in Uganda.  It's good to be home and it's good to know that my home in Uganda is also there waiting for my return.  I am committed to savoring Each and Every moment of this year.  To Embrace what is in front of me.  To laugh more.  Live more.  Love more.  To Savor Each moment and to live Fully each day given me.  I refuse to give an unnecessary inch to the enemy.  An unnecessary inch to fear... or anything else that sucks life out of me.  That requires me to be firm in my standing.  To not relent.  To live in the light.  To do a whole lot of living.  And live I will.   Perfectly?  Absolutely NOT! Somehow perfectly?  ABSOLUTELY NOT!  But I will rest in the truth that of the following verses.... 

Lamentations 3:22-24English Standard Version (ESV)

22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;[a]
    his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
    “therefore I will hope in him.”

SO thankful that He's got me... So very thankful that He is at my side!