wherever you go

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wherever you go

So, my wife started this blog to document our journey and adventures wherever we go.

Last night we were talking about the blog and I said, “why don’t you write a post about how you came up with the name?”

She replied “I did, you should read the blog”

This morning I read the blog, all the posts thus far, and want to expand upon the explanation.

Apparently it’s from a children’s book.  A book we actually own and I’ve actually read to my daughter.

Your Personal Penguin” by Sandra Boynton

A section of the book goes:

“I want to be Your Personal Penguin
I want to walk right by your side
I want to be Your Personal Penguin
I want to travel with you far and wide

Wherever you go, I’ll go there too
Here and there and ev’rywhere
And always with you
I want to be Your Personal Penguin
From now on.”

This concept of “wherever you go” has been a main part of the last 11 years of our relationship and 9 years of marriage.  Early on we talked about our desire to travel and see the world.  We both lived in lots of houses growing up so we had no real tie to one location or one house.  SO we were nurtured for this vagabond lifestyle.

We began warning our friends and family that we wanted to travel and see the world.  We wanted to go wherever we were guided and wherever we were sent.  ANYWHERE.  After I finished my undergraduate degree, I started applying for jobs with the US State Department.  I applied for some crazy jobs like Diplomatic Services Special Agent and Diplomatic Currier.  These jobs would guarantee the first three locations would be “hardship” posts.  I was given a chance to interview but didn’t make it very far in the interview process.  Even though I didn’t get the jobs we learned that we were willing to go anywhere.  I started grad school and soon completed my MBA.  I graduated in December 2006 and March 2007 we loaded up our Jeep with our dog and as much stuff we could fit and moved to South Carolina.  I had a job with a large construction company, they did work just about everywhere in the world and this was our first step.
After 18 months in this foreign land of South Carolina, I had a job opportunity to go to another project with the same company in Washington, the state.  Not the Pacific Northwest everyone thinks of, grunge, lush green forests, Seattle.  No, eastern Washington, dry, hot, tumbleweeds, dust.  We loved it.  We loved being in a new section of the world, new people, new job, new friends, and new adventures.  We started a family, moved 3 times, (apartment, rented a house, and bought a house).

Some may suspect we were settling down and putting in roots, nope.  January 2012, we started thinking about another move.  I started putting in applications for projects all over the world, South Korea, Australia, Libya, and Saudi Arabia.

And the winner is…. Saudi Arabia.  They were the first project that showed interest in me and offered me a position, then we had to wait… and wait… and wait…  Finally approval from the Saudi government that I could get a job.  Then we had to wait… and wait.. and are still waiting for my visa to be approved.

We are waiting and I have been thinking.  My wife will follow my lead and go anywhere I will go; she is willing to raise a family anywhere we go.  But what about me, who am I following.  I am also following and will go anywhere my wife is leading.  We are a team.  We are yoked together on this journey and will carry this load together.  As she submits to me, I must submit to my leader and follow as well as submit to my wife and serve her.

So.. Wherever you go, I go, and wherever I go, you go.  Together as a family and a team we will follow the will and direction of those who have gone before and will never be alone.




I’m sorting. Sorting, sorting, sorting. I’m kinda tired of sorting. Because of the weird timing of everything we don’t know if we’ll still be here when the movers come. The movers can’t come before Stephen’s visa is approved, but we’re going to Pennsylvania on the 21st whether it has been approved or not. So things I want them to send to Saudi Arabia are going in what was Emery’s room (he’s sleeping in Myka’s room now) and things to be packed for storage are going in our room. Then someone will be here to oversee and direct, but it’s pretty much laid out for the movers.

And we leave for Pennsylvania in 22 days. Maybe once it’s September that will have the kick-in-the-butt affect it should. Right now I’m just feeling foggy and unfocused. But I’ve gotten some things accomplished today, things sorted. Emery’s room is filling up far too fast, but I’m trying to keep things away from the walls because I still have corner molding to put up in there. 22 days. 3 weeks. I should be doing something.

I am doing something! I’m letting you know how it’s going. And really it’s going well. Our To Be Sold list is getting smaller. I’ve sorted through nearly everything. We have possible renters coming soon to look at the place. Plane tickets bought. Dog travel arrangements made. And with the four day weekend some house projects will be finished – more ‘to-do’s crossed off the list.

There’s so much ahead in our journey to Saudi Arabia. I mean, just to get there. That plane ride into the country, my first time really overseas, is daunting. Staying in PA for 2-3 months without Stephen sounds lonely and difficult. Medical checks for everybody. More paperwork. But I’m choosing to look at the good parts, the things I’m looking forward to. Living with Grandparents for 2-3 months means lots of help with Myka and Emery! And the kids will love being with family so much. Stephen will get to set up most of our household goods before I get there, but figuring out life in a new place is a fun challenge to me. What food will be there? What will our house look like? Who will we meet? And I get to buy an abaya.


This one is pretty!


Their supply seems really low right now, but I like the styles of abayas on this website.
I’ve been looking already. But it’s one of those things that can wait until we’re in PA. And, in case you’re wondering, I have to wear a black abaya, and I’ll have to cover my head as well. But only in public and not in the community we’ll live in.

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It’s not all pretty.

About two months ago our family was shaken up a bit.  A lot, really.  Things that Stephen and I had been ignoring for years finally came to a head and needed to be dealt with.  So we dealt with them.  There was a lot of anger and frustration, but there was even more grace and forgiveness.  How our relationship has changed in these last several weeks is seriously a miracle.  And it’s so great living honestly and openly with each other.

I just wanted to get that out there.  Prayer is amazing.  We are living examples of restoration and redemption.  One of the thoughts that I had while working though everything was this:  The hurt is real. But so is hope.  Hope is just as real as the pain is even when all we can feel is the pain.

I want to remember that.

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inspiration and a shake up

I’m thankful for things like Pinterest and blogs because they provide some much needed inspiration when I’m feeling stuck.  So get ready!  Things are going to start popping up on here!  Well, someday..  I’m think that while I’m in Pennsylvania for 2-3 months waiting to go to Saudi Arabia I’ll get to spend some time knitting or crocheting.  Maybe?  You’ll just have to check back and see.

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We went to Portland for the weekend. That was probably the last time we will be in Portland for a long time. I don’t know when or even if we’ll ever get back there. It’s sobering to start checking off the ‘lasts’ before we leave but exciting to think that we’re really starting our transition. I have to keep telling myself, “Take a deep breath. Steady. One step at a time.” But there’s a lot to do before we are ready to leave. Strip the wall paper and then paint Emery’s room. Move Emery into Myka’s room so we can redo his room. Finish the renovations in the living room. Weed and clean up the flower beds. Finish painting the outside of the house. Put the rest of our big To Be Sold items on Craigslist. That’s just off the top of my head. Sometimes I just have to tell myself to do something, Anything. Just keep moving. So, back to work!

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We can ship 1500 pounds to Saudi Arabia.  What does that even look like?!  I have been sorting things like crazy, but the items I am shipping are still scattered all over the house [umm..because they are things I use Every Day…] so I just can’t picture the total amount.

A guy from the moving company came today to survey the items we are shipping and storing, and I was so glad to have someone knowledgeable to tell me if I was on track with how much I was planning on taking.  And Surprise! He estimated that we are at 1000 pounds!  That makes me feel so much better.

Now we’re off to Portland.  I have to get some Voodoo Doughnuts before I leave the area!