April Cheer

My blogging voice is out of commission and the blurbs of life from my perspective that I once thought (secretly, of course) kind of brilliant all seem fluffy and fruitless.

I type and delete facebook statuses these days. Who cares? I say with a bit of cynicism.

I haven’t even been reading my favorite blogs. I can’t tell you why because I don’t know myself.

But then I get these really bad pangs of loneliness for writing, for the completeness it brings to a day, the connection it brings with you wonderful people, the freedom and release of sending a post whirling into cyberspace to land where it will.

Life is really quite good and happy (in spots) here in northern Alberta. One thing that stepping back from social media in the last months is helping me learn is how to use IT instead of it using ME. Does that make sense? I hope it can stay that way. Because I’ve had some pretty bad times of addiction in the past and I’m not proud of it.

Spring is coming ever so slowly to our beautiful land. I’m having a really hard time with our beautiful land right now. I wrote a shoddy little poem about April the other morning that ended with:
I cry to the sun
but it does not shine.
Three inch tulips
sit coldly.
My heart is damp and muddy too.

That will all change here shortly when warmth bursts upon us and green takes over. But the faith it takes to believe that it will actually happen is stretching a lot of us pretty thin this year.

I look over the landscape from my kitchen window and think (with a bit of cynicism again): At least the snow is almost gone. Nevermind the great bank at the bottom of the lawn and the white patches all along the bush. It. Is. Leaving!!

Dan and Bryant and I are plugging along with our reading through the Bible in a year. Job’s words of cheer on a muddy morning here include him cursing the day he was born, asking God that thick darkness seize it, wishing that he had died as a stillborn baby, that no knees would have received him and no breasts nursed him. He goes on to groan that if his misery were placed on a scales it would outweigh the sand of the seas and that his words are impetuous because the arrows of the Almighty are in him.

The poor man.

Mud and dirty porches and too many days in the house and all of my light and momentary afflictions get really pale when I examine them in light of what could be.

Actually, April was full of so many good things.

Sometimes when there is piano music coming from one of the four kids in the house who are taking lessons, I get this blessed moment of life seeming unfathomably good and right.

The beginning of this month, Dan & I took a sweet trip to Montana and spent some time with seven other pastors and their wives at a mini-retreat in a little town in the mountains. It was so good and refreshing and I’m already ready to do it again.

We had a wonderful Easter weekend celebrating the resurrection by giving two programs with the Peace River Community Choir, our new choral group that includes 38 of us from 5 different churches in our area. Choir has been a really stretching experience for many of us and I love how it draws people together. We have an A-1 director who helps us to see music in a fresh, new way. (Thank you, Steve, for moving to Alberta.)

School is winding down and I am counting down how many lunches there are left to pack.

We are considering a big trip across Canada in June and dreaming of Prince Edward Island and Parliament buildings and friends in Ontario and Montreal’s skyline and lovely Nova Scotia. And while we’re out there, we might as well take in NYC and DC and seeing the New England states. And of course there’s an auntie in VA and great-Grandma in Indiana and family in Wisconsin. On Saturday morning we happily penciled out a schedule for our trip, with time to see Ottawa’s sights and a visit to Green Gables and oh yes….we have to see the Statue of Liberty and Niagara Falls and the locks in Sault St. Marie.

And then we started calculating fuel costs and food costs and hotels and other options like motor homes and holiday trailers. And some of the light and fun went out of the planning as the dollars crept higher and higher. And can we justify that kind of a trip or should we be helping to feed someone hungry instead? These are real-life questions and the answers aren’t easy.

We shall see.

Meanwhile, the boys are doing very educational research for motorhomes online. They’ve been having the most fun ever. Another option would be one of those big white homeschool family vans.:)

Can’t you just see us trundling our family of 8 to Ground Zero? Filling up at hotel continental breakfasts because they’re the only free meal of the day? Dipping our feet in the Atlantic?

Dreaming can be quite delicious. More delicious than reality, often.

Life feels heavy with many small matters right now. Dan is busy with new calves and employees and church and family. We have conversations about the Desperate Need of a 16 Year Old for an I-phone and Why the 11 Year Old Must Take Piano Lessons. We have good friends going through hard times in their marriage, too much work to do, and a zillion projects on the go.

There are children begging to make special shakes from American Girl magazine recipe pages, bedrooms being redone, little boys with dirty ears and no desire to do long Penmanship pages, and pansy plants growing heartily in black flats in my sunroom.

If you took the time to come and read this, thank you.

Happy Spring! Run in some green grass and pick a daffodil for me today. The daffodils are long gone? Pick a strawberry then!

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13 thoughts on “April Cheer

  1. Luci, if you come to southern Ontario, PLEASE stay with us! We would love to meet you and your family face to face and get to know you in that way. Keep it in mind, anyhow. 🙂
    Spring has been slow in coming here too. It’s an exercise in patience. At least we can get outside more, and the children’s world has expanded a lot now that they can play out there more often.

    1. That is so sweet of you, Jenn! But aren’t you having a baby here sometime soon? 🙂 I don’t know how much time we’ll have and where we’ll be when, but closer to the time I’ll have to get in contact with you. Maybe we could at least meet for coffee.

  2. So good to hear from you again! You say the snow is almost gone, ours is gone but it is taking ever so long to warm up this year… like the earth just cannot wake up from it’s long winter.

    A trip like that sound marvelous with the ages of your children. My kiddos, not so much with a 1 year old. When mine are all the right age, I want to do a long trip sometime. Hope yours is a great one.

    1. I know…this seems like the prime time to do a big trip. Come to Alaska when your children are the ages of ours and stop to see us. 🙂 But you’re the lady who loves the warmth, right? Maybe you’ll be heading to the Caribbean.

  3. Oh Luci, it was so neat to meet up with you in Walmart the other day! (I didn’t tell you this, but I prayed that we could meet up if possible…) The trip sounds wonderful; go for it 🙂

    1. Penny, I was so happy to meet you too! I need to get your email address and/or phone number because I think we need to talk again. How is your son doing? After we said goodbye, I felt badly that I hadn’t asked a little more about him.

  4. I am sorry that spring is so slow…mud season wears out even the saintliest people… We dreamed about a trip like that for years when I was young. Finally the year my oldest brother started dating, my dad just made it happen, even though he had had a rough year financially. We called our ugly, very ancient motor home Old Nellie, and we packed it to the gills with food and gear. Of course, it helped that we three oldest had jobs and could share gas money. By the time we got home, we were all getting on each other’s nerves, and glad for more space, but it sure was fun. (If you visit people along the way, you can call it a ministry trip and not feel guilty about the expense. 🙂 )

    1. I love that story!! How fun that you were all able to help with expenses. Our children are of course in a younger stage of life and I hope that Liesl (who will just have turned 5 if we actually do the trip) will remember it. We’ll definitely visit friends. We have friends and relatives in so many of the places we’d like to visit. Not sure how many of my blogging friends I can rope my family into meeting, but…. 😉

  5. I can so relate to the social media swing. I’m okay with it right now but I go through the “who cares” faze quite often, too. 🙂 I hope that spring reaches deep down into your soul soon, my friend!

    1. Thanks, Shanda! I miss reading your blog and one of these days I will catch up with you again. Today was so lovely and I felt bad for my complaining.

    1. Thank you, Sharon! I’d love to see you too. Do you think I can convince my family to stop to see all my old friends from MBS? 🙂 Seriously, though, maybe we could at least meet somewhere for coffee and a talk.

  6. I’ve been thinking of you the last week or two, so it was fun to find a blog post you’d written that I haven’t read, yet. 🙂 I do so understand those first few paragraphs. I do SO hope you can take that trip. It sounds fun and like an amazing experience for your family. Maybe the it won’t feed the hungry, or maybe it will because the exposure to the world will inspire a passion in one of your children no one can put out. And no doubt your family will have amazing bonding on such a long trip together. =)

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