This post is LOOONNNGG overdue. In fact write "What's Happening" post has been written on the top of every To Do list I've written for the past month and a half. I'm not kidding. And I write a lot of To Do lists. So for all of you wondering what exactly I'm doing these days or where I'm living, here ya go...
I knew that I wanted to only work part-time while I raised support, so that I could have lots of time to devote to support raising. But if I was just working part-time I couldn't afford to keep living on my own, and even having a roommate again would still be stretching it financially. So I made it known to my church that was looking for a place to live, expense free, and a wonderful, generous family responded and said that they would love for me to come live with them. There are six kids, ranging in age from 5 weeks to almost 9, so there are always lots of things going on, and lots of noise, but I hardly notice anymore. They're really good kids, and so funny! I've been writing down some of the funny things they say and could probably publish a book by the time I leave. I've been here for about 5 weeks now, but it feels like much longer; in a good way! Right from the beginning I felt comfortable and this is definitely home now.
When I started thinking about living with family it was important for me to be able to give back in some way; I didn't want to feel like I was mooching off of people's generosity. And I am so thankful that that has been the case. Less than a week after I moved in baby number 6 was born, so I was able to help out a lot during those first few weeks. With another set of hands, life for the other five kids really didn't change much, and that's important. Even though things have gotten into a routine again, I'm definitely still helping out. A few days a week I'll watch the kids so Melissa can run errands or go into work for a few hours, and I help with general crowd control when I can. I really am so thankful that this has been a beneficial thing for all of us involved.
Not only have I been blessed with a great family to live with, but I've been blessed with a great part-time job too. I'm a server at The Firehouse restaurant, which is a local BBQ restaurant. It's a really neat place; the restaurant is actually in the old Johnson City fire station, which has obviously been restored and remodeled, and there's even an old fire engine in the lobby. The owners are an amazing Christian couple and that is definitely reflected in the way the restaurant is run. It's a great environment and everyone really works as a team to get things done. Something about greeting people and serving BBQ is making my southern accent a little bit stronger though. I can really hear it at times. I've been told that they're going to love my southern accent as much as I'll love they're English accents. That should make having conversations with people really fun!
If you remember, I said I wanted to only work part-time so I could commit several hours a week to support raising, and that's what I've been doing. Each day I'm making phone calls, updating databases, keeping in touch via email with my team at the CMF office, meeting with people, and sending letters and thank you cards. I'm trying to do as much of my support raising as possible through face to face visits, and so I've even been doing some traveling to accomplish that. This has all been a bit more time consuming than I originally thought, so I am so thankful that I am able to work only part-time. And support raising is going really well! I'm pleased with the start I'm off to financially, and I've just really enjoyed sharing with people.
So that is the condensed version of what's happening in my life recently. I'm either watching kids, working, or working on support raising. It keeps me busy, but I know that I have been incredibly blessed by the Lord and very thankful for all that is happening!