Have you ever had one of those terrible, no good, very bad days? Or in my case, years? Let me start off by thanking those of you who emailed, facebooked, and commented messages of concern. It was very heart-warming to think even my blogging world friends were thinking of me! While this has been one of the hardest years of my life, I have also been greatly blessed and have seen the hand of the Lord helping me and my family through it all! Here is what has been going on with me for the last year….
SUPER CONDENSED: Life is hard-and when life is hard you NEED to have your food storage!
CONDENSED: We moved to Arizona last Summer for a job change and to be near my family. In the process, my son fell off a play structure and was badly injured, our house fell out of contract THREE times (THREE TIMES?!!!), 3 jobs later, 6 months with out a regular pay check, and one dead van. However, I am happy to announce that my husband has the job he is supposed to have (a total miracle of a job!), my daughter attended the perfect school for her, my son is happy and healthy, and we couldn’t have done it without our food storage!
REGULAR VERSION: You know that feeling that change is coming? I actually hate change….like really hate change. However, last Winter, both my husband and I could feel a big change coming our way. For us, it came in the form of a big move from Utah to Arizona (my California heart was excited for SUNSHINE!) for a job change. At first, everything was falling into place and we considered ourselves really lucky. Then while at a playgroup at my neighbors house, my son fell off their play structure onto his head. No bueno. Thankfully, there was no damage to his brain but he did have a badly broken nose and a fracture above his eye and the saddest, swollen face you’ve ever seen. Because they can’t cast a broken nose, I had to try and keep him away from other kids and doing basically anything a busy four-year-old boy would love to do while my husband was in Arizona and I was packing the house. In the middle there, he ended up needed a nose job, as we affectionately call it, to fix the bad break. This meant that once again I had to keep him away from the other children and sitting so it could set and heal properly. With a lot of help from my friends, I got everything packed and ready to move with one week before we were supposed to close and did what any sane girl would do-I went to my parents’ house in California for a visit.
While I was there, the funding for the buyers of my house fell through and our house was back on the market. But with nothing but boxes inside. GREAT. It would go in and out of contract TWO more times before it actually sold six months later. Thankfully, we were able to stay with my sister in Arizona until we could move into a house. Which we eventually did-it’s really the perfect house for us!
But then-my husband was laid off. The last one hired is usually the first on the chopping block and that meant us. GREAT. We got to work, literally. I took a job at my daughter’s school as a reading specialist (which I LOVED!-if you are looking to teach your children to read, I highly recommend Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons) and my husband worked as a substitute teacher. Life was super chaotic and crazy for me! I had never been a working mom before. (I have such a new found respect for working moms!) On the last week of school, my van’s transmission died. Totally dead. So we had major medical expenses, job loss, and a dead car in less than a year.
On that very same day our van died (a day, as I remember, where everything went completely wrong) our bishop asked to stop by our house. (A bishop is our local church leader.) It was one of the most humbling experiences I have ever experienced. He pointed out that we had been out of work for almost six months (I was trying not to think about it) and was worried about us. He asked if we needed food from the Bishop’s storehouse. (Bishops’ storehouses distribute commodities to the poor and needy as requested by bishops. Bishops’ storehouses also provide meaningful service opportunities for those receiving assistance.) It all hit me that night, that on paper we looked like we were in bad shape…really, really bad shape. Thankfully, because I had food storage and knew how to use it, we had food to eat every night and were getting by just fine. It reminded me how important a good food storage is in getting through the small and large emergencies that pop up in life. It made me grateful that I had put in the effort to learn how to use it for such a time as this!
Thankfully, it wasn’t much later that my husband got his dream job (seriously, this is what we moved for!). Because it had been such a long and arduous year, I spent the Summer soaking in my kids and spending a lot of time together as a family. But now, it’s time to get back to work!
I’ve learned a lot of important lessons this year, probably too many to mention. But here are a few: I learned that if you look for it, you can see the hand of the Lord strengthening you during trials. That if He took everything away quickly, you would miss out on valuable life lessons. I also learned (again) how absolutely vital food storage is to every family and that a lot of people (even me) make a lot of mistakes when it comes to food storage! Even though my life has been total chaos this last year, I have a lot I want to share with you, after all, I lived off my food storage for the last six months! Things like why I won’t can salsa anymore and other favorite new recipes for canning plus lots of new recipes and a new found love for homemade salad dressings. I’ve also been busy working on some big food storage projects (like a new book due out early 2015 and more)! So excited to be back with all of you!