Friday, May 30, 2008

Beware of Lookie Loos

We have an appointment to show our house this evening. YIKES. Up until now the idea of selling our house was looming bigger and bigger, but now this feels awfully real. So I've been wiping off counters, plumping up pillows, sprucing up as best as I can. I'm well aware we may need to show it A LOT before we find that magic one who will take it. Still, every person who sees it brings us one step closer to having this house belong to someone else. My emotions are in a tailspin about that.

I LOVE this house. I have lots of misgivings about parting with it. My logical mind knows it's the smart thing to do. Time to downsize, to simplify. But my nesting soul has deep attachment here. This is NOT going to be a fun or easy process, this business of letting go.

We've found a house to rent and will be getting into it as soon as the owners replace the floor coverings. Once I'm no longer living in this house I think I'll be able to be way more objective. Right now, it doesn't feel like real estate. It feels like an extension of my heart. Whose idea was this anyway??

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Doors & Windows

I have heard it said that whenever a door closes somewhere else a window opens.
Guess I better start looking for windows.

I was notified today that I did not get the Wenatchee job. I was fairly sure that would be the case when my reference people had not been contacted by last week. But now it is final. They did not pick me.

Of course I would have liked to be picked, but in a lot of ways I'm actually relieved. As much as I would have loved that job, and as much as I dearly love that area and the people I know there - my marriage is more important than my career. If I had taken that job my husband and I would have been living in separate households and taking turns commuting to see each other on the weekends until my beloved was ready to retire - which will probably not happen for three years or more. Granted, I'd have had my summers off when we could be together full time, and get a long break over the winter holidays, which would have helped. Still, the time apart was NOT something I looked foreward to.

I am ever so grateful that my dear husband gave me his full support if I had chosen to pursue that option, but I had been having second thoughts and third thoughts and fourth thoughts about attempting such a thing. Over the last few days while he's been out of town for a family reunion in Utah it really hit me how sad I would be to be in some tiny apartment without my man. No matter how nice it would have been to have a full time faculty position at a college I respect, my place truly is with him. I feel very comfortable with that.

So now I'm back to the drawing board, needing to find a job. I will ONLY look here where I live, no matter how good other jobs may sound. Being geographically place bound does chaffe a bit, but that is the current reality.

What will I be when I grow up? I haven't a clue. But no matter what I may do to earn a living, who I AM is his wife, and I like that.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

A Whale Tale

A dear friend of mine gave a wonderful talk in church today based on the story of Jonah. She started out by giving some historical context to the tale - describing the impact of the Assyrians conquering Nineveh and what the social/political climate would have been like at the time. It was with GOOD reason that dear Jonah was fearful and decided to high tail it in the other direction to Tarshish. My friend then read a few scriptures and paraphrased the story of Jonah with which we are familiar - focusing on one piece I had previously overlooked:

Jonah 1:17 "Now the Lord had prepared the great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights."

The Lord PREPARED that fish to be in the right place at the right time to prevent Jonah from drowning. A fish of that size does not grow in a day, or a month, or even a single year. This was a BIG fish. But God is an eternal being and He had the Big Picture in mind all along. He knew the nature of Jonah and He knew the challenges this dear man would face. Jonah was basically a good guy who had some important work to do. But God knew that at a key moment he was likely to lose courage. So God prepared a fish.

God knows what challenges I will face. God knows the things that I will master and the things that will cause me to falter. He will prepare ways for me to get through each challenge.

Now, when Jonah got swollowed up by that fish I doubt very seriously he said "Yeah- Goodie, I'm saved!" It must have been dark and nasty in there. It was probably excruciatingly painful, difficult to breathe and downright terrifying. But being in the body of that whale (or whatever sort of fish it may have been) is all that stood between Jonah and drowning.

Sometimes when I am swollowed up by circumstances that SEEM to be yet another layer of adversity perhaps I would do well to recognize I may be caught in the throat of some big fish. What feels like I'm getting eaten alive may be the very circumstances I need to carry me through to where I need to ultimately be, just as it was when Jonah was spit out onto dry ground.

For another take on the Jonah tale, check out this blog where I snagged the picture of the whale I included here.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

St. Connie

My older brother had a dear friend name Connie who was one of the most optimistic people he ever met. No matter what life threw her way, her typical response was to always ask "where is the blessing in this?" She had the capacity to recognize good of some kind in EVERY situation. Connie was murdered while trying to save someone else. Even at the moment of her death, I am sure she was finding some sort of blessing in that horrible event.

I never actually met Connie. But I've heard my brother speak of her many times over the years. Her memory is almost like an icon for him, and through association I have also been influenced by her life. Lately I've had a lot of challenges swirling around me and some chaos that I'd prefer to not have to deal with. When I start to get all overwhelmed I try to remember Connie and ask myself that same question.

Where is the blessing in this?

Truly, I do believe that even the most difficult of circumstances can bring about good. I just can't always see it at the time. For now I just keep putting one foot in front of the other and try to trust that all is working out just the way it should. I try to remind myself that the experiences I am having right now are exactly what I need at this time. Perhaps when I can stop struggling against things I define as "adversity" and look at ALL of it - both light and dark - as opportunities to learn and develop maybe I can move on to a different sort of lesson.

I've heard it said that PAIN is merely the distance between what IS and what outcome I would prefer. If I can let go of my attachment to any particular outcome and accept whatever IS then I won't get so caught up is frustration, disappointment, etc.

Easy to say. Hard to do.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

House Pictures

Here's a few more images of the house...mainly because I want to be able to look back at these and remember this place after it's no longer mine. We've lived in this house for six years and have really loved the place. I'll miss it. I know it is just a house - that HOME is something I create within me irrespective of any particular place. many special memories associated here.

The packing continues...where did I get all this STUFF???

Back View of House


Family Room

Living Room

Monday, May 19, 2008


I've spent the evening filling out the paperwork to list our house for sale. It's not going to be easy to walk away from this place. The house was built in 1892. It has been gutted and completely remodeled so it truly has the best of both worlds - lots of quaint Victorian charm but all the modern amenities.

Here is what my ad says: Historic country charm with many modern updates. Large rooms with 9 foot ceilings. Ceramic tile floors in kitchen and formal dining room - Kitchen has newer oak cabinets, lots of counter space. Glass top range and built in microwave, extra quiet Whirlpool dishwasher. Loads of storage - large pantry off the kitchen, "Harry Potter Room" under the stairs, plus a half basement. All 3 bedrooms have huge walk in closets. Master bedroom is 18' x 20' with vaulted ceiling and a balcony for enjoying quiet mornings. Wrap around porch with large extended deck area perfect for outdoor entertaining. Extensive landscaping with waterfall feature won "Yard of the Month" last year. Entire yard including garden area and porch hanging baskets on timed automatic sprinklers. 24' x 26' two car garage is fully insulated & finished - both doors have automatic openers. Both the garage and 10' x 12' pole barn storage shed have same vinyl siding and paint trim as house.

Athena is a clean, safe, friendly community with a population just over 1,000 people. Brand new library, lovely park with playground and public swimming pool, local grocery and gas station. Located half way between Walla Walla, WA and Pendleton, OR and just 60 miles from Tri-Cities. Enjoy the best of both worlds - live in a quiet rural community yet still be close to shopping, medical care, airport, university, college & community college resources, as well as a wide range of outdoor recreation. (skiing, fishing,boating, and much more.)

So if any of you dear readers know of anyone who might know someone who knows someone who wants to move to Oregon, let them know about it, ok?

Who knows? They say we are all just seven degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon. (I know someone who met him, so I guess I am only two degrees...that makes you THREE degrees from Kevin Bacon.) Maybe with a little blogger networking I can find just the right family to love my house as much as I have.

Hey, stranger things have happened!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


My interview for the job of my dreams went VERY well. This is the job that I want, no doubts or reservations. Taking it would involve a move and some personal complications, but I haven't got a single doubt in my mind it would be an ideal match for me. So I'm hoping beyond all hope they will pick me.

The intriguing part was finding out some things about the position that I was very specifically prepared for precisely because of the experience I have had in the crummy-overwhelming-bad match job that I have right now. Isn't it interesting how our adversity is sometimes our best teacher?

Years ago I heard my uncle say something when he was hoping his apple crop would turn out well: "I'm going to cross my fingers and cross my toes, pray hard, keep my eyes on the Lord and not think about anybody's pants." Whatever works!

In the mean time I'm doing the all too familiar dance in my heart of wanting it oh so badly, and wanting to stay positive and optimistic, but also steeling myself against the possibility that I will not be picked. I try not to let the fear creep in. But I think if I miss this one my spirit may crash and burn. I don't know that I've ever wanted anything as bad as I want this. It is probably the ONLY job on the face of the planet that I would be eager to stick with for 15 years or more.

So now I wait. I do trust in my core that it will turn out however it should. But oh, how ready I am for this to be the one....

Friday, May 09, 2008

Being Flexible

With all the potential changes I have coming up in the next couple months I am working hard to stay open, to be flexible, to not be so rigidly stuck in preconceived notions of what is desirable that I cut myself off from new possibilities. Flexibility is a good thing, right? But THIS, I think, is taking flexibility beyond imagination. I'm not sure how this is even possible.

Decisions, Decisions....

I got a call yesterday scheduling me for another job interview.

So on Monday I go for the one in Wenatchee. The following week I do the one in Pendleton. I'm still waiting to hear back for the one in Walla Walla.

Each of these jobs are COMPLETELY different. IF I get offered two or all of them, how will I pick?

There would of course be advantages and disadvantages with each position. There is no such thing as a one sided penny. I keep playing something like the hand game of rock/paper/scissors in my head trying to decide which factors trump what.

How much money do I need to make?
How willing would I be to move?
What matters more, long term security or more perks right now with less certainty for the future?
Would I rather be a leader responsible for a big budget and supervising people or a follower as part of an integrated team?
Do I want to work for a school or a governmental agency? What are the differences?
How can I tell from an interview which job would be the right match?

Decisions, decisons. I will pray a lot and hope to be guided by the spirit, to be granted some particle of discernment so I can get the clarity I need to make the right choice. (of course, that's presuming I am given a choice to make, since NONE of them have offered me a job yet.) The next few weeks should be interesting.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Key piece of writing

I was extremely impressed by a piece of writing Tristi Pinkston did over on her blog, dispelling the absolutely false notion that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is or ever was connected to the FLDS sect in Texas that has been getting so much press of late. Check it out HERE.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Looking at new possibilities

So what next?

I have applied for three jobs. One is in Pendleton, OR. One is in Walla Walla, WA and one is in Wenatchee, WA. I am scheduled to interview for the Wenatchee job in a couple weeks. The two others are still in the screening process.

What am I gonna be when I grow up? Don't know yet. I may just opt not to grow up. But I trust that the universe has plans for me. I simply don't know what that plan is as yet.

I've been listening to the book "A New Earth: Awakening To Your Life's Purpose" by Eckhart Tolle while driving in my car and at home I am reading Homeopathic Science and Modern Medicine: The Physics of Healing With Microdoses by Harris Coulter. Both have been pretty intriguing.

I'm preparing my garden spot and scheming about what to plant.

I just bought myself a mountain bike and am anxious to get out and feel some wind in my hair.

Life is uncertain in terms of where I will live or what sort of work I will do.
But it remains VERY clear about what is truly important: love some and laugh some and work some and rest some. Learn some and teach some and live some and die some.
Just trying to get through each day's lessons with as much humor, gentleness and grace as I can muster.

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