Monday, August 26, 2013

Woahhh the sweetest thing... Is often the hardest

This past week or so has been the most challenging time in my recent memory, yesterday in particular. It was so difficult for me to say goodbye to the people and the places I've come to know so well and cherish so deeply. My past five years in Cortland afforded me the blessings that come from building a family of some pretty awesome people in a pretty great community, and I struggle to find the words to adequately express my thanks.

Saying goodbye was hard, but as I shared in a text with Oma, I consider my breaking heart a good thing because it means I loved deeply and was loved in return. From my family in The Binghamton area, to East Side Congregational, to Homer Congregational, the Interfaith Crew, Supper Club, and and and and and... I have loved each of you, and I know you've thought fondly of me over these years.

Now we are on to a new chapter. Everyone here at the Barton House and Walker Center has been so gracious and welcoming to me.  One resident, Harry, helped carry stuff up to my third floor room, and Bill the groundskeeper helped carry my steamer trunk up some narrow stairwells as well. I spent last night with Mom and Aunt Jane at the hotel because we were too exhausted physically (and I was completely done emotionally) to unpack the bins and boxes. So, we started fresh this morning, and although it's not totally finished, it almost resembles home. It has the tell-tale signs of Rachel.
Today after unpacking for a couple hours we took the T into the city and ventured around a bit. I live on the green line, at the red dot on this map. The School of Theology at Boston University is the purple dot. We made it to the hot pink dot on the blue line.

We did plenty of walking around, had some great food, and just enjoyed getting out and de-stressing. The more time we spent today with packing and enjoying the area, the more I adjusted to the idea of calling here "home," which is HUGE!

Today I met Alyce (pronounced just like my sweet Alyse from home) who I will be sharing a bathroom with. We're also neighbors at the end of our hallway, and I look forward to getting to know her more. Mom, Aunt Jane, and I had some ice cream in the dining room before retiring for the night. It will be hard to see them off at 7am, but I am so grateful that they came on this trip to help me get settled. 

Change is hard. It sucks. It's still unclear how missing everyone will play a part in my future here, but I've made it, and I'm looking forward to a great three years. 

I know you're all with me. Words like, "I'm only five hours away," "God is in this," "I'm proud of you," and "look over your shoulder" ring through me. And so, let this great journey begin. You're all coming along for the ride. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Vacation pictures

What shape is that one, Aunt Rachel? 
I think it looks like a dinosaur, Viv!
What's a dinosaur?
 As a follow up, here are just a few pictures from the vacation at the cottage.
A beautiful day to sit and relax!

The twins go a-kayaking!  Sweet time with my sister!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Let the Coundown Begin

It's been a few since I've written.  So, here's a quick update:

I just spent a glorious week with my family on a lake just over an hour from home.  It was phenomenal to have the time to relax, swim, eat, and enjoy each other's company.  And when we all get together, it can be quite loud.  But the cacophony of our voices and laughter mixing together and wafting throughout the room will stay with me for a long time.  It hit me as I was leaving that I likely won't see many of them again until Thanksgiving or Christmas.  Wowzers... a lot can happen in 3-4 months.  Did I mention that my vacation was amazing?

I'm preaching tomorrow morning at a super sweet church about 45 minutes from here.  This congregation has been an absolute treasure for me... they've given me the room to grow and learn in ministry, and I am forever grateful for them.  Tomorrow is my last sermon with them for quite a while, and I can't wait to see them all again.  I didn't get as much worship planning done over this last week,  so I'm still in the sermon writing stage (it's all planned, just needs to be put to paper) for this afternoon. 

Okay, that part over!  I'm moving on August 25th, which is in 8 days!  I've been doing some packing and cleaning, but there's still a long way to go!  It's a gift that I don't have a job right now, so I can take all day to pack... if I can ever get truly motivated to do it.  I'm going to end up putting most of my stuff in storage for the next few years (thanks, Mom and Dad) until I get settled in a place that has the room for it. 

8 days...
8 days...
It doesn't seem real!  I'm about to embark on such an amazing journey... Boston University...Wahoo!