a much needed update

we've called san francisco home for 7 years now.

our daughter has been in our forever family for 2 years.

we're entering the teenage years and realizing we've got just a handful of summers left before high school graduation.

so we spent the month of june away from "normalville" (as i have coined our san francisco life) and reappeared in july feeling refreshed and renewed.

that's a lot of "re" happening, but so it goes when we take a break from the normal.

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my happy place, our happy place is found on the best little island in the world with thirty plus of my extended family. for an 11 mile long island, that's a significant number of family, but we make it work, and have for some 30 years. and this island time is the highlight of my year! 33 others agree!

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pictures and posts can portray perfection.

but it is the people and places that personify the life that i want to be about. even if it stretches my patience, increases my faith, and shakes my planner-lifestyle up a bit!

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one june moment, i put my face in my hands and said to myself aloud, "i'm the richest."

who am i to have this life - to witness God's faithfulness, see Him at work, have terrific friends, travel the world, be a part of the stories, meet with Him every morning and He's already there, to have Ben in my life, to feel satisfied with the life He has given me? i  want to go deeper and more intimate. the peace and satisfaction in my soul was thick and i was aware. i receive this, God. i receive Your rest. Your rain.

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i'm a believer in getting away, changing the scenery to gain fresh perspective.

in doing so, i could see that i was putting confidence in those very people and places, rather in than my Maker and Sustainer.

for it is God who saved me. it is God who has my days planned. it is God who has been faithful to guide me -- walk so closely with me in trials, storms, uncertainty.

it is God who called us to san francisco.

it is God who opened doors and conversation and relationships.

it is God who has me writing. He is my reason.

it is God who downloads thoughts, words, ideas, stories, songs, truths, Scriptures, open doors, favor, opportunities.

it is God who sends people to encourage and sharpen.

it is God who i cry to with gratitude and humility.

and i want it to still be God who leads my life, speaks to my heart, grows me, teaches me. i want  i want it to still be God who is central in my life and everything else that comes after.

He is Supreme. He is my everything. He is why I write and point you to Him. I will make my life about Him.

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so i've been writing. making my blog better.

seeing God in europe, san francisco, camp and beyond.

telling His story that grips my heart every time i do.

making my life, teaching our kids that Jesus matters most.

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july has been spent at home with fairly structured days of solid morning routines with reading, journaling, projects and creations. we've added a bike rack to our life and are cruising around the bay. the kids went to church camp and it was life changing for one of them in particular! (stay tuned!)

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before you go, let me say thanks for stopping by. it's so good to be together again. i'm about to hop over to london for a bit with ben as he takes a gifted 2 week sabbatical from our church. we'll both do what we love: walk, converse, journal, listen, admire and learn from a city and her people, eat, and rest. it will be clear through posted and not-posted instagram pictures.

but here's what's coming next on the blog:

someone's salvation story

how a partnership is better than a mission trip

what we're reading

travel guide: vienna

travel guide: amsterdam

a letter to moms with littles

5 things i love about where i live