Today is the first day of Autumn, and my last day at home. It has been so beautiful here in North Idaho lately. The leaves have begun changing to yellow and we've had a few really nice sunny days with blue skies. It's getting colder and it definitely feels like fall. Mom put out the fall decorations today. The transition is over and a new season has come; not just for the calendar but for me as well. I had two weeks of transition time at home and tomorrow morning I will be driving back to Seattle (by myself, in my brand new car!).
I didn't mean to go this long without blogging. The last few days at Cannon Beach were wonderful. I miss being there so much. It seems like just yesterday yet it also seems like ages ago. Time is such a strange thing. My parents came down for the Labor Day weekend conference. It was good to visit with them and have them meet my friends and see what I had been enjoying all summer. The last weekend was bittersweet and so much happened. One of my good friend's dad passed away unexpectedly and it was so hard because there is nothing you can say to help. It was good though to be there with her, hold her, and cry with her. We helped her pack up her room and said goodbyes, promising to keep in touch and keep her and her family in our prayers. We were all kinda numb not believing what had just happened but we had to get back to work and prepare for a new group of kids that night. That night, Bruce, Trenton, Jill and I hung out watching Psych in the Beach Front lounge---should have definitely hung out in there earlier in the summer! Saturday was my day off but I worked the carnival to help out and go to dance on stage. A trip to Seaside with my parents, watching football, session, SNL practice and girl time completed the day. Sunday I worked session, played flag football, enjoyed the concert in the park, had evening session, SNL and then laid on the beach and looked at stars. Monday we had one final session with the kids and then spend the afternoon completely cleaning all the classrooms. There were A LOT of staples in that wall! It was really weird to see our Route 66 room all bare and white. Before I locked it up, I sat there and remembered a lot of good times in the classroom: games, lessons, and crafts with the kids; prep-time with Amber, Mitch, and Bruce; prayers, laughter, and talking; the dessert night that the guys threw for us; and now the room was empty. It felt like saying goodbye to a room in a house when you move. We had a final meeting to watch a staff slideshow and Eric gave a final send-off devotion. Staff bbq and packing followed and then a whole lot of goodbyes. Tuesday was the long drive home but we stopped in Spokane so I could buy my new car! A 2009 Silver Honda CR-V Ex-L :) I love it!
I've spent the last couple weeks here at home getting things ready for school, visiting friends, hanging out with my parents, sleeping in, and shopping. One of the weird things about being home is that my brother is not here! He's all grown up and off to college now. So, I went to Bozeman with Annie last weekend to visit my brother at school. It was really fun to see his campus, catch up with him, visit family friends, and drive around Yellowstone. I absolutely LOVE Montana scenery and landscape, especially between Bozeman and Bridger Mtn. Something about rolling hills of farmland, with a few big trees, a barn and house, surrounded by mountains underneath the big Montana sky is just so gorgeous to me! The scenery on the drive was so beautiful with yellow aspen trees, crazy big rocks, rivers, creeks, mountains, valleys--love it!
I'm really grateful for the two weeks at home to transition. I was really not ready to leave Cannon Beach or ready to go to school. But, as I've skyped, texted, and FB chatted with people from SPU over the past two weeks I have become more and more excited to move back to school. I certainly loved Cannon Beach and did not want to leave, but I knew it was time to move on to something else. For every thing there is a season. However, as I head into school I am not the same as I was last year. God has worked in my life and changed me in a lot of ways. He has re-filled me with a passion for Him and a love for children. I have new friends to keep in touch with, visit, and talk to; friends that I can count on for support, prayers, good advice, love, and laughter.
Tomorrow I will be heading out by myself, and heading west to lots of new adventures: Junior year, living in apartment, cooking for myself, learning how to drive in Seattle, Falconettes, Ivy Honorary, volunteering with 3yr-olds at Bethany, and striving to live each day in love and service for Christ.
Sadly, the amazing summer is over; but, tomorrow, a new chapter begins.