Overalls and Cowboy Hats.

Dustythe journey continues Leave a Comment


Well Hello there! Its been too long hasn’t it? Alot has happened so lets just play some quick catching up…I’ll drop some photos and then I’ll be better about updating. Sometimes I sit and wonder why I’m typing but people do ask me and people do read it and the best part is I can go back on this later and read it…5 yrs from now…10…and relive a portion of our lives. If I want. Which I might, but I’m not sure.

I’m listening to Noah Kahan. He’s pretty popular with the young kids (and not so young) he has a nice sound…sometimes its sappy. Hatcher always blurps out any curse words in the car but when I listen on my own I’m like “oh!”…because I don’t know the songs well and and so it surprises me.

Gosh..where do we start?

The rental in my backyard is doing great! It was booked booked for most of June and this month…had a couple cancellations but they usually book back up! I had a 2 night minimum but I didn’t set it in the app so people can still request 1 night and I usually say yes because I’m a push over. The hard part is then I have to clean it daily! I like to keep myself busy so I don’t always want to hang around just to clean so I have had to hire a couple people to help me out. I hope to add some outdoor space to it late this summer/fall. Cross fingers. I also have a project brewing to clear to the right of my garage so I have extra parking for camper, kayak trailer and extra cars because with our own cars and friends cars and a rental guest, it gets crazy. BUT if you are looking for a place to stay in Newaygo…keep me a shout out. I’ll cross off the dates and save you some fees.

I’l never say my kids are doing great…because I know they aren’t even if they don’t tell me. I mean, they no longer have a dad and everyday they are reminded of that in one way or another. I can see the pain and I can see the frustration without them saying it. I wish we could talk about it more…I’m excited for us all to be together but that won’t happen til labor day weekend. Hatcher leaves for Alaska to stay with one of Mark’s good friends, Matt Keller, who owns Blue Ice Aviation and works on Sheep Mt in the summer. Hatcher will hopefully be helping him out and learning the ropes as well as just hanging out in Alaska. Mark has another friend there that I know is looking forward to spending time with Hatcher as well. I’m very thankful for them both that they would take him under their wings so Hatcher can do this. When he leaves Cora comes home. She might be extending her stay so she can see more of Europe but we are tying to work out the logistics of changing flights etc so she can do that. I mean, if she trys to go to Europe again another time, if that EVER happens, it will cost alot more than just changing her flight. So I hope she can make it work. Then Aly comes home off the island in August and then both girls move to college before Hatcher gets back. I have a short trip planned to run a 200 mile relay in Oregon but then the following weekend will be Labor Day weekend and I”m looking forward to our 9th annual Weekend at Bernies at the farm in Newaygo. Like really looking forward.

Aly loves living on the island but of course, jobs can get stressful but all in all she is running (and feeling strong) and working. I have been to see her a few times and am planning on going up for the music festival to see her again and enjoy what the island has to offer. Since I have been there so much I can now tell you the best way to spend your weekend up there if anyone wants to go visit Beaver Island. :). Aly had an “episode” on her first day of work and it scared her frends so they took her to the little Urgent Care on the island. Of course, there is nothing they can do and she felt better by the time they got there. She had another one but it was shorter and she recovered quicker. But today she had another and it scared her. Her boss says it looks like she is seizing and we told her doctor this but getting answers is almost impossible in the medical world. You will jump from specialist to speciaist, test to test and probably won’t get an answer. She is suppose to get a CTscan soon and start some nuerology sessions because obviously, your brain controls everything so if you can change the brain, or retrain it…it can heal. We are trying to get this all done before she goes back to school and all while she is on the island. She did come back for a cardiologist follow up and it was good but still really no answers just some more direction. The stress of thinking something is terribly wrong isn’t helping since stress seems to be a trigger. Keep praying for her. We are doing some things on the homefront but I just feel really helpless right now. Meanwhile, she is enjoying the island and her friends and making some new ones.

Cora is loving Kosovo and what she is doing. She has some great photos and has only sent me a few but she takes them in the heic mode so I can’t post them here. If you are on VSCO then you can find her and see them. I was able to talk to her for a long time the other day and then again yesterday which is uncommon because its a 6 hour difference and they keep them busy so calling home is hard or impossible. Thats okay. She says she isn’t homesick and is doing well so that makes my heart happy. They are doing some youth stuff…some evangelizing in the country villages, some camps. She has some cool stories about how she can been praying for something specific and then realized…God answered it! Sometimes we don’t see it right away though. She was praying for her waiter/barista in the cafe she goes to because he asks about her Bible but believes she is believing lies….she was looking for opportunity to witness to him more and it happened. :). Keep prayin for that. I think his name is Var? I think she will get him a Albanian Bible to gift him before she leaves.

Hatcher had his own gig at Moss Ridge Golf Course and he rocked it. It was his first time playing that long but he did great. He will do that again before he leaves for Alaska and he plays for tips only so if you go bring some cash! :). I proud of him for doing something a littel uncomfortable and putting himself out there. He practiced HARD to be ready for that. He just got a piano and that has been consuming is spare time. He is working for a small landscaping company and he loves making money and I love seeing him come home filthy and tired. Its good for him. When we were up at the island for the 4th he sang at the open mic. That was fun.

I am….doing okay. I feel like I break out in sadness less but there are things that surprise me. I went to only one open house mostly because I was busy on some of the days or I forgot but I found myself needing to quickly leave and then crying on my way to my car. I used to love gatherings and people (I still do…) but its very lonely and its very hard to go alone and then to be there alone. Mark was my right hand man. My friend, my date to everything. Its very lonely. I decided after that I”m going to more. Yes, I made it about me. For one more year, can I just make it about me? Me and my kids. Sorry if that offends people but thats what I have to do. I went to a wedding…and that was so nice and really not super hard til the parents stopped and talk to me and when the dad mentioned Mark…he choked up and I choked up and then I was done. Good thing I was on my way out.

I don’t know what I want to do with my life. I have a big ongoing project that I hope to be completed completely by spring of 2024. I am finishing up things at this house that I never finished and hope to have that all done by winter. Hatcher has two more years of school and I’m NOT pushing him along, but I do need to look ahead. Moving to Newaygo is nice to be by my parents should they need me and one day they will…but I’m not sure this is the place for me full time and forever. I love the warm weather and the sun. I always have. Mark and I talked about being able to maybe travel a bit and spend more time away in the winter because with his work he would be able to. I’m looking to expand my design abilities and take on projects and/or continue speaking so that I can have a flexible schedule and live where ever I want. The summer will fly by so I”m hoping to get this figured out.

I was listening to AFR today and in October they will be holding classes to teach Logic thinking. What? Is that a thing? Maybe it is now! I just thought logic was natural and some people just chose to not use it. But maybe this is really needed. The whole segment was interesting though and worth looking into. I’m sure there is more info on AFR website. I’ll have to look into it.

I went to see the Sound of Freedom movie. In 2020 I spent so much time trying to figure out how to watch it. Where was it playing..when was it getting released and the release date kept getting pushed back and finally I forgot about it with all of life that happened. Three years it took to release! Its worth seeing and well done for the low budget they had. I couldn’t tell. It’s an important topic but its also important to know that America has a huge traffiking problem and its often overlooked. Our numbers are huge and 95% of kids trafficked know their trafficker. (am I spelling that right). Makes me think of a book I read…about the organization A21. All worth looking into.

Oh, the Annual Mark Linsley Memorial Airport 5k took place on June 17 and it went well. My whole famiy went and alot of Marks extended family came. His cousin even stayed at Jack Jr for the weekend. I kept my training up and threw in some speed training as well and it paid off because I ran the 5k faster than I thought I would and I won my age group too! So I’m keeping that regiment up for my next race in August but hope to run a couple more 5ks’ (whoever thought I would say that) The numbers for runners were down from last year as last year there were alot of emotional signups. We do hope to spread the word more and get higher attendance. They offer all you can eat breakfast with your sign up plus a t-shirt (this year designed by Huismann Studios). So look to come run or walk the event next year and bring people!

Mark’s headstone was put in the cemetery. I heard it looks good. I’ve not been there. It was good to finally have it done and placed and have that paid for. The next thing I have to do is go to the bank and close out his name on accounts and his cards. Yes, I still have them. I couldn’t do it last summer. It felt like I was erasing him..but I know I have to go do it so its on the agenda for next week. And its hard! If I’m having a yucky day it could send me into all kinds of emotions and even though I’m okay with crying and such, its just hard. I don’t like to do hard sometimes. but I will and I can.

Alot more has happened but I don’t remember. Those are the highlites! Oh, I have green grass now since it finally rained! Man that was bad wasn’t it! Pollen galore, dry dry skies and it was just yucky.

So to put it in a nutshell, we are stable. Stable is good. Pray for Cora’s last few weeks… and how she will end her trip. Pray for Aly’s health. For answers and to get better and for her transition to Huntington University in August. Pray for Hatcher. He is 16…so all the things. School, friends, to be able to talk about what he needs to talk about. For his needs to be met and that he holds Jesus close even though our family spiritual leader is gone. For me to feel more focused on what I need to do.

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