Nick, Ashley & the girls stayed with us throughout that first week and it is true that children are a BLESSING FROM THE LORD . . . those little girls kept us busy and pre-occupied - in every good sense of the word!
Once everyone "went home", the girls and I went to a friend's house for overnight - just to breathe some "fresh air" and see something beyond our home's "4-walls"! It was a good reprieve and we felt ready to come back home and start searching for our "new normal".
We went back to church on Sunday (11/13) and it was wonderful to be back with our loving church family. God has blessed us with a church that was there to carry us through and bear our burden with us! (though I mention "our" church, Country Bible, I would be amiss not to mention our parents church, Bethel Mission Covanant and two neighboring churches, Fellowship Bible and Central Baptist . . . each of these churches also serving us in love and showering us with God's blessings)!
Since Tuesday (11/15) was the first day of hunting season and there was no school, we decided we would wait until Wednesday (11/16) to return to work/school. This was another area where I could see God's hand orchestrating and knitting our lives into His plan . . . HE KNEW when he allowed me to take a position at the High School almost 6 years ago where the future was going to take us. He knew that it would be such a blessing at this "new" point in our lives for us to return to our "normal routine" together. I did not have to drop the girls off at school, or send them off on the bus and head in another direction for my job, I was able to go with them, to the place (and people) who were like our 2nd home!
November 16 came, and with it, the morning alarm, like so many days before. We got up, went through our morning routine, me with butterflies in my stomach like the first day of a new school year. The day went by fairly quickly and the love that we were (again) showered with was (again) just amazing! And the fact that even though in a public school, I was not afraid to share my faith in the fact that "yes, we are doing o.k. God is holding tight to us, and we are truly experiencing a "peace that passeth understanding", and though we DO grieve, it's NOT without hope, we KNOW where Rick is and that we WILL be reunited some day!"
Kajzi had made the 8th grade cheerleading team (she's in 7th grade) on November 4th, a fact that her Daddy was very proud of! The first game they were cheering at was on the 16th. Taya had J.V. Cheer practice that night and Tessa wanted to go to Youth Group . . . That was one of the hardest things for me - it was the first time we had all "gone in different directions" in 11 days, but I realized that I could not hold tight forever, so Kajz & I went up to the game, Gramma Milly brought Taya later and Tessa went home and then to Youth Group. And we all survived!! GOD IS GOOD! :)