Okay, that was a crazy summer.
And while it isn’t officially over, when we look back on this year, it will be this past 8-week period that sticks in our memories.
If we are connected via Facebook, or through our monthly e-newsletter, you may have followed along but just to recap…
- In June one daughter sat the Junior Cert, and another the Leaving Cert.
- In the middle of that, my parents flew over and visited for a little over 3 weeks. While they were here, we took a trip to the North to see where my mom’s side of the family is from (Limavady, Co. Derry) and to the West.
- On the day we dropped my parents off we began packing up our stuff so we could move house. (Our old landlord was going to be selling our house.)
- A week later, we were moved into our new place.
- Two days after we moved in, we picked up friends at the airport that we hadn’t seen in years. While they were here, we spent a good deal of time talking about the possibility of them moving to Dublin to work with us! A week later we dropped them off at the airport, and went home to pack for our trip to Prague that would begin the very next day.
- While in Prague we took part in two back to back conferences.
- We flew back to Dublin on Tuesday and on Wednesday spent the day hosting a couple of leaders from the church planting organisation we are with.
A few random thoughts.
If that sounds exhausting…it was. Mid-way through our time in Prague, Liz and I were physically and emotionally exhausted. I can’t remember the last time my whole body ached like that. We worked to catch up on some sleep, and that helped, but we’re still feeling the effects.
Each part of our summer, taken by itself was great (well, except for the exams). We got to spend quality time with family that we hadn’t seen in two years, and friends we hadn’t seen in even longer. Lots of good conversations. And in Prague we were able to meet and share a meal with several new friends, and talk in person with people we’d only met on Skype.
And the house is great. I don’t think I realised how dark our previous place was until walking through the new place and noticing all of the sun. Each person in the family, when walking through it for the first time commented, “it’s so bright.” I’ve never been someone who was affected by a lack of sun, but the past couple of years in “the cave” took a toll.
I learned that conferences have a natural flow. When you come to the end of one, you’re tired, and ready to go home. Once the leadership Summit ended, it took a day or two to gear up for the Connect Conference. Next year they are splitting them up…the Summit in March, and Connect in July.
That is probably complicated by the fact that every person in our family (except perhaps Méabh) is an introvert. And while someone at the conference pointed out that Christian Associates (the group running the conferences) is an organisation full of ENFPs (if you know your Myers-Briggs), each person in our family needs sizeable chunks of alone time to recharge after spending time with lots of new people.
So, we should be ready to come out of hiding around mid-November. Okay, probably not that long, as we still have a lot to accomplish in August and September.
So what does the rest of the summer hold?
Erin gets her grades from her exams on Wednesday. We’ll know shortly after that where she’ll be going to school in the fall.
Brenna and Méabh will both be starting school at the very end of the month.
Brenna and some friends are planning to start busking in town.
Liz and I are still working on support raising. And while our schedule has kept us from doing as much as we’d hoped, it has been going well to date.
We’re planning to host a house-warming/end-of-the-summer-party as a way to connect with friends and new neighbours in a few weeks.
Liz has a bunch of administrative stuff to get ready as she gets ready to kick off her second year of teaching violin. Instruction will start the first week of school.
I need to get back on track working towards my Irish driver’s license.
And we could stand to catch up on some sleep, but with the bright sun coming into our windows starting around 5:30 am, that is easier said than done.
Thanks to everyone who has prayed for us, encouraged us, helped us move, supported us these past several weeks. We appreciate it so much.