Life has been busy...much busier than I am accustomed too. 5 nights in the last 8 I have been up past midnight. I used to love staying up past midnight, but I just don't do it very often anymore. The craziness began with the week leading up to Rebecca's party. Then last week included finishing projects, working at a consignment sale, struggling to fit in a late night trip to the grocery store because there was no other time to do it, and then ended with many childcare arrangements being made so Trace and I could make an overnight trip to Dallas on Friday night and return Saturday evening. We went straight to a planning dinner for our Mexico trip upon our return and Sunday we had church and Care group that night. Today has truly been a gift. The kids and I have just been at home. We organized Aidan's room and took a walk and I plan to do some laundry in a little while. Getting life back to normal has been nice today. I feel like I can sit and breath (and catch you up on our busyness).
Our trip to Dallas was nice. Trace had been invited to attend a coordinator training conference for a class that he took in the fall (I will write more about that in the near future). The man who has put it together in the past is really needing more help and he asked Trace and another lady to partner with him. Our anniversary was last week so Trace asked me to join him for the training and we got a hotel room and went out for a fancy dinner (and I mean fancy...they even loaded my baked potato to my specifications at the table, that was a little awkward for me since I am more accustomed to fancy places like Chili's or On the Border). It is always a true gift to get to spend focused time with one another. It just does not happen often enough but it is a treat and it really helps us prioritize one another. Here is a picture of the hotel we stayed at in the heart of downtown Dallas. The restaurant we ate at was on the 38th floor with a wonderful view of the city.
It was a wonderful evening. Thanks Honey for planning it all for us! We did spend much of our time at the conference, but between the drive there and back we had more opportunity than normal to talk and that is the way I connect with my husband the best.
I did realize that I am not a city girl and the realities of the city are hard for me to handle. We drove the 10 minute drive from the conference site to the hotel and every inch of it was filled with a homeless person on the streets. My heart was truly grieved. It blows me away how such wealth and such poverty can exists side by side. I know that the Lord loves those people just as much as He loves me, why do I dismiss them as being below myself? My heart hurt as we drove by and I think that it should hurt. I think that if I really love Jesus Christ then it should hurt me to see His children living in poverty. I just kept saying, I could not do it. I could not live here. Why do I want run from the discomfort when I see it? Why do I so want to avoid even seeing it? If I am not directly confronted by it, then it becomes easier to ignore the reality and much easier to do nothing. My heart was so hard at one time, that although I may have been uncomfortable during this drive (largely based out of my own fear), I don't know that I would have been grieved by it. I am thankful that the Lord is making my heart tender and in the process He is changing me to seek Him more closely. I am beginning to view all of life differently and I pray that the Lord will protect my mind so that as I begin to view things differently I will respond biblically and obediently.
Here are a few more pictures from our trip. These were taken on the rooftop of the building where the conference was held. It was beautiful up there. I made Trace take a picture with me just like dorky tourists. We had a great time. Thanks so much to my mom and friends who made this possible! I owe you big time and I appreciate you hugely!