A much-needed vacation

IMG_7374As I have posted on Facebook, and through my email message, you may already know that I'm away from my desk until April. Tiger is not at all happy with our absence, but our house/cat sitter is keeping him great company, so we are quite certain that despite the miffed look we got over Skype, that our baby kitty is in good hands. Besides, my initial desire to take him with us would quite certainly have been a disaster! Dogs travel well on planes (we had two on different flights) but cats...probably not so much. A few weeks ago we boarded a plane with way too much luggage and flew to Seattle, with a connection to Portland. Due to the snow falling in Detroit at the time, our flight was delayed and alas, as I did once many years ago (and swore never to repeat), we found ourselves running to catch a plane. Lugging suitcases down moving stairs, jumping onto a train before the door closed, and racing to the gate that was nearly about the close...I really hope we never have to do this again! But surprisingly, even our luggage made the transfer without a glitch and we found Portland to be quite the adventure.

IMG_7418Besides spending time with two of our kids there, we toured the Gorge, drove to the coast, bought some of the best chocolate EVER, and even found coconut milk ice cream that was better than any I've ever tasted. The moss in this rainy city covers the tress in an ethereal beauty and our trek to the falls near the Gorge was wet but fun. I could not believe we had cell service there, but when the phone rang, there was no doubt!

IMG_7446We stayed in a house though Trip Advisor and had a wonderful experience in an old Victorian home. Our host was very accommodating and the place comfortable and big enough to host a gathering, which added to the feeling of leisure. I'm not sure any hotel could measure up to the experience of renting a house. Definitely something we would do again.

From Portland we flew to Los Angeles and have been in parts of California since. Our biggest joy comes in seeing our family - all of whom will finally be together in one place for a time. Then Randy and I have plans to see the sites, relax, sleep late, and basically vacation. It is a joy to see California hills are green instead of the drought dry brown of a few years past. So much beauty here. If only I could fit a palm tree into my suitcase...

IMG_7534We bought cinnamon rolls (a no-no for me, but I took the risk) and ate them while overlooking the Pacific. I will never be able to stand beside an ocean and not fell the awe and beauty of creation. We are so small in comparison to the One who created these mountains and told the seas, "This is how far you may come and no farther." How anyone can look at nature and not see intelligent design, a Creator, is a mystery to me.

In the process of vacationing, of course, I am pondering things to write. Pondering Hannah's story (my next work in progress), pondering future stories. Or sometimes we just watch Little House on the Prairie and Law and Order reruns while chickens run around the yard where we are staying. (Another rental house.)

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We look forward to more time with family and friends in the days ahead. Mostly, I'm finding this a good time to connect with God in my journaling and reading and sneaking peaks at devotionals online. I sense that God has sent us here to teach us. I'm not sure exactly what that lesson is yet, but I have a feeling He will show us. Trust. Faith. Hope. Love. Humility. And so much more.

May He speak His words over you today.

Selah~