Sorry that it has taken me 4 mos to get back to this history. I hope those who were interested in the story before are still reading my blog. We’ve had some interesting months and activities like blogging has just been let go for the most part.
So, where were we? I think I left off after J2 joined our family. That was Dec 1996. In 1997, Eric resigned as pastor of the small church in The Dalles. It was not what we wanted, but we realized that what the church really wanted and what we could give were not the same thing. I was working part-time at the community college library but it certainly wasn’t enough to support our family. Eric took on the position of administrator of a small, local Christian high school. We needed to stay in the area as J2’s adoption was not finalized. A family friend offered to baby sit the boys for free and that was a big blessing. Not only did we get free child care, but we grew very close with that family. We joined the bigger local church and was blessed by many friendships there than encouraged us during this scary transition time.
That Spring (or was it Summer?) our home was burglarized. I stopped by the house to pick up a library book before going out into the country where our friends lived to get the boys. When I picked them up they were dirty from head to toe (LOL Gregg loved to let them get as dirty as possible – I swear he dumped dirt on them just before I got there! LOL) so the library trip was out and we headed straight home to get baths.
I let the boys in the front door and they tore off through the house toward the bath – J1 was 2.5 and J2 was toddling (under 1 yr old). It wasn’t until I passed the public rooms (with all the big windows facing the street) that I realized our home was not normal. The guys had kicked in our back door and ransacked the house. The police even speculated that they might not have left until we arrived home! A scary thought.
The burglary was scary…but it was a blessing too. We had a good friend who had a trailer on the west end of town. She decided to rent us the trailer and move into a smaller apartment in town. The rent was about 1/4 of our current situation. And, though we were in a trailer park, we were relatively isolated and butted up to a hillside where we regularly saw wildlife. Across the road from us was a lake that provided more wildlife! We loved our time in that trailer! We lived there for about 1.5 years and loved every minute of it!
After J2’s adoption was finalized we started to feel the call to full-time ministry again. The years in The Dalles and at Calvary Baptist Church were good for our souls and we felt encouraged to try again. We started praying that the Lord would provide the right situation for us. We were starting to wonder if we were right for pastoral ministry, but decided to leave it in His hands. I knew it would be hard to be a pastor’s wife again. I looked online for other PWs to connect with, but I didnt’ find any. So in June, 1988 I started an email group called PastorsWives – Thriving in the Fishbowl. I remember starting it late that night and thinking no one would find it. But by the time I went back online the next day – there was already a membership request! Those gals were my lifeline and I’m priviledged to still be friends with many of them even though I no longer am involved in the group nor ever think I’ll be a PW again.
But back to then. After we’d been praying for awhile about what we should do, we got a call from another ministry couple. Their ministry was interim pastors. They would go to a church for a short-term to help them transition between pastors. They had served at the church we had previously been involved in and were helping one currently that they thought Eric would be a good match for. And, they had a Christian school similar to where Eric was currently serving.
Long story short in July 1999, we moved to Reedsport, OR and Eric was the pastor at Harbor Baptist in Winchester Bay. We enrolled J1 in Kindergarten at the Christian school but almost immediately realized that it was not a good match for our child. J1 has always been very active and hard to handle. Lord I love that boy, but he’s been hard to parent. A few things stood out but the clincher that this was not a good thing for our child or our family happened the Spring of 2000. Another mom of a Kindergartner told me that on the way home from school she asks the kids what silly thing did J1 do today at school? She thought I’d get a laugh out of it. But I was hurt. Hurt that he was struggling so much and didn’t need this type of attention! But at the time I felt that the pastor/administrator’s son had no choice but stay enrolled – even though many years before in The Dalles, I had decided he’d be better served by home schooling him. But soon after that his teacher became very sick and a sub was going to take over for the rest of the year. His teacher called me and suggested I take him out of school. And I took that as approval! At the same time there were other moms in our small church deciding for various reasons to homeschool as well.
Homeschooling him was a good thing. His curriculum was easy to teach and he did well. It did mean he no longer saw the other kids his age daily, but with his brother he really didn’t need anyone else. He and J2 were very close and enjoyed one another immensely.
We continued to homeschool and enjoy our church, friends and community with no more significant changes until J1’s 6th birthday in Jan 2001 (J2 was 4).
But that will have to wait for later! Darn…I think this history is going to be more posts than I planned! There is just too much to tell. Don’t forget to read parts 1-3!