So, let me start off my answering a few questions that seem to be popping up frequently:
I have run into multiple people in the grocery store who say, "Wait a minute! I thought you moved to Uganda!" Well, not yet. We made the decision to follow this calling on December 20, 2014 and announced it in January 2015. It takes most missionaries about 18 months to raise funds. We are at month FIVE and getting ready to kick off fundraising. It would have been super cool to have somehow raised the money and had everything in order in 4-5 months, but things generally don't move that quickly. We do have a realistic goal departure of June 2016. That gives us a solid year to fundraise and allows our kiddos to finish next school year. That means Grace can finish up her Evansville Christian School career by graduating 8th grade, too!
I don't have to try to be organized. I am by default always organizing something in my mind, so preparing for our big move is naturally exhilarating for me. But, the biggest question I get asked over and over again is: "But why are you doing _______ so far ahead? Why don't you wait until closer until you leave if you don't leave for another year?" The answer is because there are SO MANY THINGS TO DO that if we waited until closer to our leaving date, we would never be able to get there! Here is a short list of what we have already been doing:
1. I have "take it to Uganda" bins where I put everything we will need to take with us: kids' headlamps, a small sewing kit, one set of sheets for each bed, etc...
2. I have "keep it forever" bins where I put things I know we won't sell or give away: pictures, important momentos like the kids' handmade cards, etc...We are trying to keep this pile very small.
3. We have taken mass amounts of belongings to consignment shops: furniture, clothes...All furniture except for our kitchen table will be sold. The only clothes we will keep are those we will take with us and we will keep one bin of winter clothes in storage for visits home.
4. I'm preparing for a big garage sale...There are piles everywhere. Everything we don't need to keep to stage our house for selling GOES.
5. We've begun the process of getting our vaccines updated. T-dap hurts...for a week.
6. I've bought all my homeschool material (Again, why so early? Because who wants to be trying to figure that out at the last minute?!)
7. We are trying to find homes for our sweet puppies and our outdoor cat. We don't leave yet, but if something doesn't work out with their new owners, we want to make sure we can replace them and they never go to a shelter. Yes, we are still looking for the perfect home for them (in case you are interested)!
8. We are looking for friends to hold onto our items that need to be temperature controlled (like family photos).
9. We are getting our house show ready! We plan to list with our great friend Dana on June 1st! (Currently we are gutting a bathroom and looking for someone to do some drywall and tiling.)
10. We are looking for rental homes or an apartment that is close to school and can fit all 6 of us.
11. We began an intense year long mentorship called Sonship through an awesome organization called SERGE: Grace at the Fray. This mentorship is designed to deepen our relationship with Jesus to prepare us for missions. We do daily work and meet bi-weekly with a mentor by Skype.
12. We have been talking with SERGE about working in partnership with them and I will be visiting some of their Ugandan missionaries when I go in June.
13. We are working on our fundraising letter and some fun prayer magnets our friends and family can post on their refrigerators to remind them to pray for us while we are in Uganda!
14. I've organized a trip to Uganda in June for Nicci St Clair and myself. I can't wait to catch up with Carol Adams, see Mackline (pictured above), and meet some of the SERGE missionaries! If you want to pray for our trip, follow this link! Thank you, Centerpoint Community Church for donating the money for my portion of this trip!
Wow. I think that's everything. There is a LOT happening, but still so much to do!
Now that my first blog post is done, I can feel much less awkward about the next one! haha