We got home last Wednesday to a frenzy of wedding festivities. In fact, we hadn't even unpacked the car when I took a little jaunt to join some friends for part of the bachelorette party for our friend, Tracie. I didn't stay for very long but I wanted to at least make the effort to be there for some of it and share in her joy.
We had our dear friend, Rebecca, staying at the house with us from Virginia (she had actually gotten in the day before we did). Our friends, the Bahms were here from Germany and Chanda came from Florida and they all stayed with the Cousers in their new house. (Remember, the Cousers were still staying in our house when we left and made the transition while we were gone). All of us had been friends in Hawai'i and have since gone our separate ways. It was a great opportunity to reunite and support Tracie and Doug as they start their new life together! Congratulations, Tracie and Doug!
All of that is to say it was a busy and very fun week upon our return. In fact, I think if we didn't have all of that to return to we would have continued our "vacation" just a little longer. Since Zak got to speak about 10 times along the way, it was a "working vacation" and we were pretty tired by the time we headed home. We even joked that when we got home we would need to turn around and go on a real vacation! I think we would have liked to take the last leg a little slower or stay in Colorado a little longer to relax. I am pleased that at the end of a month on the road we weren't all just fed up with it! We really enjoyed our time together and seeing family and friends.
Over all the kids did AMAZING until the last couple of days. Things really started to break down during the four hours from Albuquerque, NM to Bayfield, CO on day 22 of our 30 day trip. When we tried to stop for dinner we couldn't find a single place to stop that the boys could get down and play. In fact, we couldn't even find a picnic table or park to stop for a picnic. We finally found a picnic table in a less than welcoming area of Cuba, NM and ate a late lunch and hit the road again. Those last few hours were antsy for all of us. I think that was the day Koa didn't take a single nap, too. Boy were we ready to see Papa and Grandma!
We had a great time visiting them and seeing the farm! While we were there, Zak was the keynote speaker for Reign in the Rockies, a spiritual renewal weekend for the Four Corners area. He spoke five times while we were there and I got to teach a ladies' class on Sunday morning. All of our sessions were recorded and a CD is being produced so folks who didn't attend could hear what they missed. I know I'm a little biased, but I thought Zak did a fabulous job. Attendance for the weekend was pretty low, but we got a great response from those who were there. It's amazing (but not surprising) how the struggles that we're addressing are everywhere. In every church that we spoke at we always had people lining up to speak with us afterwords about their personal struggles. One of the things we definitely got to see all along this trip is that when we talk about addiction and abuse there is always a grateful audience and a great response. We just pray that whatever was needed to be heard from God was heard.
Our whole trip was a great opportunity to share what God is doing in our lives and our ministry. We were also grateful for the opportunity to say thank you to some of the people who support us throughout the year financially. That was one of our main goals for this trip and we did get to do that for the most part. There are still a few people we haven't been able to thank personally, but we hope to be able to do that at some point. All told we drove around 6400 miles, slept in 10 different places, spoke at 3 different churches and visited a couple others, and had a wonderful time seeing family, friends, and supporters over 30 days on the road. This country is filled with such beauty - both in it's scenery and in it's people.
Thanks God for a wonderful, safe trip! We hope your will was done.