No fuel no where

These are our faces when dad says…keep your eyes out for fuel, we have 12 miles left in our tank…
Everyone looks out the windows, as we gaze at grass and corn…


And so, we did end up making it to a town, that in fact did not have a fuel station, but had a nice man with a gas can…it allowed us to make it to the next small town. Bless that man.


Treasures of Christmas Healing

Tuesday was my last day of work, {Christmas Eve} and we headed to the east side to spend time with Mi Amor’s family there.
You know, those treasured moments of spending time with family have a certain added magic in these crispy winter months. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were spent with my new family and while sipping tea, I observed a moment…one of those ‘pause’ moments… breathing in the scent of cinnamon spices from my tea, my mind went to the blessing of gaining four new brothers, two wonderful parents, and two sets of grandparents….{and of course other extended family!!!} Mi Amor has shared his family with me in such a touching way, I know its just how marriage works; you gain your spouse’s relatives, but I think that giving me equal rights to calling his family my own is a great honor. Food was eaten {while I stuck to my specific regime of yogurt, nuts, and cinnamon for breakfast…cauliflower and celery for lunch…tea throughout the day and munching on pecans, almonds, and peanuts for snacks…then some more spiced yogurt for dinner [its a wonder I’m able to stick to this]} Christmas evening we headed back to our home to pack and prepare for our trip! December 26th we headed to Mi Amor’s other grandparent’s house to celebrate with them. Sledding definitely happened and lots of chatting. At midnight we made it to bed and at 3:30a.m. we woke up to head to the airport.

Here we are, in Minnesota, playing lots of games and treating family like gold. My grandpa, he has had cancer for a very long time…but God has blessed him with lack of pain. Dinner last night was an opportunity for me to be translucent with him. If you know me at all, I hate crying, but after I went to Panama I became an emotional pile of mush. I know I’m not dealing with cancer, but I can relate to him; we’re both dealing with an attack on our bodies that we did not choose, nor can we heal from completely, it effects not only our bodies, but our emotions and the people around us.

I’ll admit, I’m scared to lose my only blood-related grandpa. I want healing for him…but I’m overwhelmingly thankful that he doesn’t deal with pain.

The Lord has given us wonderful parents who have given us plane tickets for a Christmas present. My husband has been exposed to the most emotional Christmas of my life thus far. Having this time with relatives going through struggles and dealing with the curses of this world has made me look at my hands…actually, its made me thankful for the ability to use them to serve over this Christmas. I’m getting back to my old crazy self…at least I’ve felt more myself. My mind has had times of freedom from these chains on my hands. I want to use them! I’m taking the opportunity while I can to bend them and hold things and do acts of service. I don’t know how long this little session of bliss is going to last but there’s three more days of 2013 and I’m hoping the new year will bring healing.

If this issue had to happen, I’m thankful that it has allowed me to relate to people who struggle with an ailment. I’ve been transformed into a pit of compassion while wanting to search deeper into other’s health problems…what is the cause>>WHY is your body reacting like this or what has changed?

I’m still sticking to the Anti-Candida Diet and eating yogurt with cinnamon twice a day. I spit into a cup of water this morning, first thing, and the water only got cloudy, so this is an improvement. My hands don’t look AS bad, but still no complete healing. I haven’t had this long of a ‘clean’ streak without large sums of itching/scratching or pain since September. This has enabled me to actually be part of this Christmas.

I believe that God is with us and He longs that we love Him and have faith to believe. I don’t want to be conquered by this, not now, not when I’ve started to become myself again…

Keep shining and sharing your healing story with others,
you don’t know who’s life you’re going to change. 

Chortles, chuckles, and changes

Well, after a long and claustrtphobic drive to Minneaplois, we all made it safely, although, in-between joking choking and laughing with tears.

A few bumps to my mom’s ankle proved pain and an incident involving the top of the truck and a frappé from McDonald’s proved lack of sleep.

Today, we get to see MY BIG BROTHER JOSH!!! 🙂
I get to steal hugs from my grandparents as well.
AND I get to practice spending time with my grandpa, especially. Last night I was hit again with the realization of how stupidly I spend my time while I’m in Minnesota.
It’s all good when I am there to see family, but I usually end up spending time with others than my grandpa…he’s got cancer BAD–throughout his spine. I dont know how long I’ll have with him on this earth.
I’ll see him again, in Paradise, but now is when I need to hear his wisdom and advice. My mom’s Dad died when I was three, so I’m deeply connected to them, but I have a hard time expressing it.

*sigh* time for me to stop moping, we are about to leave.

I WILL try harder to connect to my grandpa, just letting him know that I love him.

Tradition Transition

While in Panama my grandparents sold their farm and moved from my beloved Fosston to Moorhead. Adjusting to the thought of this loss was hard on many.
Tons of thoughts came to my head  of how life would change and how it was unfair how I was unable to say goodbye to my Fosston farm Christmas’.
Arriving at my grandparent’s new house, I was hardened inside but was, as ever, overjoyed to hug my dad’s parents. Entering this house that looked just like the other twenty or os down the road with the same yellow exterior was rough. I hugged my grandpa hello and with that came streams of memories:
I smelled the familiar scent of his pipe smoke and was reminded of the days of observing every movement he would make in his cushioned chair in their old farm-house. The way he would fall asleep to a war movie with the surround sound on during the loudest battle scene. The times when I would hear deep theological discussions between him, my dad, and uncle. Grandpa would always shake his head, lean forward, remove his pipe from his mouth and say, ‘well,’ and continue with a most intriguing story supporting his point. If one of them made a great point he would let out a ‘hmm’ and chew his tongue on the left side of his mouth (a sign he was thinking hard-an attribute I inherited).
Another thing I have memorized my grandpa doing is when he listens to his classical music collection (a love of mine) he sits in his chair, picking at the top of his head, zoned out in deep thought.
Along with these and many other odd habits and wonderful characteristics make up some of the reasons and memories that I love about my grandpa.
When I opened my eyes to let go of my grandpa’s greeting hug, I saw the stained glass window from the farm, it had been framed and placed in a window that separated two rooms. After stepping out of the hug I only felt the unusual feeling of crying, which never went away throughout my stay-but for many reasons.
Exploring their house I discovered it to be spacious, which meant room to place their belongings that once warmed the farm. The patriotic framed picture, the shelves full of books, the piano, all familiar table-cloth, Christmas garland, and all the hundreds of little things that I had laid eyes on many times throughout my life. “These treasures don’t belong here,” I thought, “my grandparents shouldn’t be here.”
Continuing on with the next couple hours before my cousin, uncle, and aunt arrived, I assisted my grandma with preparations for the evening meal. I set the table with the entirely familiar plates, silverware, and glasses. As my grandpa’s soothing voice sent a prayer up heavenward, while sitting with family around the table, I hoped in silliness that I would open my eyes to the farm…instead the prayer ended and I ‘amened’ into reality; a strange new land.
While eating I enjoyed conversation with laughter and updates on life, I suddenly realized, when my heart was re-softened, that it had absolutely nothing to do with the building, it had to do with my heart.
I could make a good time or a bad time, my happiness was my choice. Where was my joy?
For the last two hours I was wallowing in my depression, blinded by it,unable to see how much love our family can bring to any place.
After supper we gathered around my grandma, while she played the piano. Our nine person choir sang the many traditional Christmas cards with joy and love. I laughed and smiled, glad that God opened my eyes.
In the beginning of the third verse of “Rockin’ ’round the Christmas Tree’ I took ahold of my grandpa’s hand and started dancing with him. Thankfully my mom captured it on video so I can treasure it forever.
Christmas came the following day and I was hoping to awake to the signature scent of grandma’s pancakes (something that never had changed)…but instead I took a shower first thing and popped a piece of her homemade french bread into the toaster, without the slightest hint of a pancake. “Life changes” my mom had given me a book to read, ironically before leaving for Minnesota, that stated this.
Who Moved My Cheese is the title of the book.
Adjusting to one of the most obvious facts of life, that it comes with change, is my 2010 lesson.
Life is busy, hard, and filled with change, and within each day our attitudes affects the way we react to these circumstances. I believe, by personal experience that we, as humans, will always go through spirals: roller coasters of spiritual and emotional ups and downs. Tip is: make sure you AND those around you don’t go too far down.
Sometimes, I feel hypocritical because I write on a topic and go through a situation where it takes me a bit to eat my own words.
I do not blame you if you feel as though my blog needs no more visits, but know this: I will ALWAYS welcome your opinion and advice.
Making new memories in this house is my obligation this visit. I am soaking in the advice and opinions here as well.
I realized how much, through stories, this move affected my grandparents. It was one of the hardest things they have ever done and had apparently gone through much heartache. They have such a positive attitude about it and are focused on the future, leaving behind the hardships and bad memories.
We will create new traditions, memoirs, and reflections.
Already, during Christmas lunch have the Wester’s hearts warmed a house.
My grandparents have already made this change, this milestone, this transition, a memory and learning experience.
This house is now a home.