We were happy (well, content might be a better word). We were certainly COMFORTABLE with what and who we knew. Moving to Atlanta was crazy because we didn't know anybody, we had no friends here, AND worse, we were heading south to be in full time ministry, which was WAY out of our comfort zone.
But God is faithful and He connected our family quickly and for 5 1/2 years this has been home.
Now it's time to move again, and for some reason this seems much easier. Well, "easy" would be a gross overstatement, but we have such peace about this move and every day Chloe says, "I can't wait to move to Swaziland! I wish we were going tomorrow!". Wow. I never thought I would be hearing that from my beautiful 15 year old daughter. I know that I would not have been saying that to my parents at that age (actually, that was the age I was shipped off to boarding school because I had a bad attitude :)
79 days from today the Maxwell family will be driving to the Atlanta airport and getting on a plane. This blog is just an update on where we are in the process, just in case anybody cares.
Our house in Alpharetta is on the market now, but we haven't had anyone come through and see it yet. We are in the process of building a house on Project Canaan in Swaziland and it is coming along nicely. Above is a photo of the house and the view from the front porch The doors and windows are in, the view is great and the electric/security fencing will be going in soon. There is lots of landscaping to do, which is critical to try to encourage all the neighborhood poisonous snakes to relocate. Landscaping will also remove of all the marijuana plants that seem to have cropped up wild all around our house. Sheesh.
I maybe should be feeling panic, but I am not. I have peace about our impending move and our new lives. I found out today that I will have to iron ALL our clothes that dry outside (too expensive to run the dryer except during rainy season) because of grass tics and itch bugs that might be living on your clothes when you bring them back inside.
We don't have a water filtration system installed yet for any domestic use, but that too is underway. We have started our Typhoid pills just in case of an outbreak - strange to have to take a live virus in a series of four pills over eight days to prevent possible illness. I am so thankful that malaria is not an issue where we are living so we don't have that to deal with.
I have gone through every drawer, every closet, every room and have purged to the best of my ability. The way I look at it is we now live in a three story home and are moving to a one story home. Simple math suggests that we need to eliminate two thirds of all the stuff we own. Slowly it is going away and I am not missing any of it. We will ship the first half of our belongings on April 4th so they are there when we arrive on June 2nd. The other half ships on May 31st as we get on the plane.
A few things that are still to be done: sell the house, drive our 2 Canadian cars up to Canada to sell them because we can't sell them here, determine what University Spencer will attend, find someone to take our 2 beautiful Bengal Tiger house cats, Chloe's 16th birthday party, Spencer's 18th birthday party, pack 2 containers, change of address notifications, get new Canadian passports for the family (they expire soon - not good) and a long "to do list" of miscellaneous items.
I have a bit more travel to do before we leave. In fact I have 14 more flights before I get on a plane to fly to Africa. Now I'm not complaining because I have an awesome month ahead with some awesome speaking engagements (Hawaii, Venice Italy, Las Vegas, Edmonton Alberta), but I look forward to the month of May when I am home in Atlanta for our last month.
Of course (ladies only read this please) I also want to get everything "checked out" before the big move since I won't have access to the same level of healthcare in Swaziland. So this month is Mammogram/PAP/Colonoscopy month and Chloe got her wisdom teeth out. Fun eh? I know, I know, WAY more information than you wanted - that was for the die hard friends who are still reading down this far :)
We left the comfort of "home" in Canada to settle in the "land of the free and home of the brave". It has been an interesting time here in the sunny south and we are thankful for our time here. But it is time to move on. We really don't know what to expect when we get to Swaziland other than change, challenges and joy. What we do know is that God is with us every step of this journey and we feel His presence every single day. For that we are thankful. Without His presence, this would just be a bad idea.
Thanks for your prayers and support and for reading all the way to the bottom. Happy Tuesday!
79 days and counting