Thursday, May 18, 2017

Surprise Visit From The North!

Once upon a time...it was a cozy Thursday evening, and I was sitting cross-legged in my favorite chair, in our schoolroom, deep in a FaceTime conversation. I was very much of the knowledge that it was just me and a few siblings at home. It was dark outside, and nearing ten o clock as I was finishing up my call, when all of a sudden...the door to the schoolroom opened and in walked MY COUSIN + lifelong bestie whom I most certainly + assuredly knew was hundreds of miles away in her far-off Canadian home. 

OR WAS SHE REALLY AND ACTUALLY HERE?!?!?!?!?

The phone went flying, earbuds dangling as I shot out of my seat screaming out all sorts of exclamations. I had to hug her multiple times in the middle of all the joyful whooping to make sure that she really and TRULY was standing right before me. Her baby boy (in her arms) began to cry, obviously + understandably terrified by this wild woman before him. 

Ah, what memories.

Once I managed to calm down, I heard the whole story...here cousin love + sister love had been scheming + plotting of this visit since JANUARY. Where had I been???? Well, in the dark, quite successfully. =) Her husband so sweetly brought her and the little man ALL THE WAY from their new home in Ontario...to visit ME in lowly little Iowa! She hadn't been here since she was dating her husband, five years ago...and it was just all too good to be true that she actually WAS here again!
Friday morning found us at our favorite local coffee shop, for the first "in person hash" since last April. BEST OF TIMES. It was also lovely to introduce my cousin to my best friend, the luscious Breve Experience. She was smitten, as I knew she would be. =)
Ahh. Can we do this every week please, instead of just once every year or two???
Friday night we had homemade pizza + such a fun pizza making party proceeding it! Over half of the family was gone on trips or dates or things of that nature, which left just a few of us, eight in number. 
Saturday lunch was at the most incredible Crepe Place. (downtown Iowa City) This place is so legit---I could live on their gormet crepes, I think. I was especially thankful for them after the ???? amount of time it took to finally find a parking spot! 
Just look at it. If that isn't presentation, I don't know what is. =)
We had a Coldstone gift card that we put to good use for our dessert. We were nearly blown away as we walked back to the car......eating ice-cream + horrifying our proper and dignified cousin as we defied every kind of street-crossing rule known to mankind. Er, womankind. =)
The little man is basically all grown up since I saw him last a year ago! (cue the tears) Such a charmer. We all couldn't get enough of him, and he was definitely the most popular person all weekend. It was slightly sad that I had to share him with my little sisters (and the rest of my family) but such is life whenever a baby enters our door. =)

Ah, so many memories just writing this post. This visit was definitely one of the highlights of my year. There's just nothing quite like time with kindred spirits, and surprises are the best, I am finding. =) I haven't often been on the "being surprised" end, but it is quite fun. It will be a looooong time before I forget the afternoon at the park, the failed golfing expedition (ahem), the midnight chats, the hilarious round of "the Bean Game", and the look on certain faces when guys got up in the middle of the night to load out hogs and found us girls all still awake + "going strong".
Oh, and all those  "shady" moments that occurred over the visit? Those were pretty grand too. =)

To my cousin dear, and her sweet little family, and my sista love who helped plan...
thank-you a million times over. The visit was beyond beautiful + I loved every minute.
Let's do it again sometime, okay? 

-Chels

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Currently

 
*THINKING
About how it's been a loooong time since I've blogged. Okay, that's it. =)
*LISTENING
The new hymns album by Anthem Lights. I have it on constant repeat. My favorites are the Easter Medley, I Need Thee Every Hour, and the Hallelujah Medley. Goodness, so much beautiful. These guys can harmonize SO well!
*WATCHING
Nothing. Ha. No time for movies these days. Kinda funny how life does that to you. Does anyone else feel like movie time is in seasons, sometimes?
*WORKING
Details for the summer tour. New album marketing. Blogging. (family blog) Office work, in other words! Also spring cleaning window washing at the hotel. Trying to figure out a plan for this blog. (pray for me!) Organizing my life.
*DREAMING
About trying out a new project I've been dying to do for YEARS and am finally going to be attempting!
*LOVING
Organizing, deep cleaning, and discovering my minimalistic side that I didn't quite know I had.
*LEARNING
More and more about openness, brokenness, + faith that move mountains.
*EXPERIENCING
Lots + lots of new things in this season of life. Also answered prayer in the tiniest AND largest of ways, which warms my heart so much.
*FINDING
Rest in knowing that I don't have to know everything, cause Jesus already does.
Revelation!! Why does it sometimes take SO LONG to learn this?!
*KNOWING
That there is a purpose for everything, and that Jesus has, does, and WILL make everything beautiful. That's a promise!

I'd love to hear a little of YOUR life currently, friend!
-Chels