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Sundays just aren't the same

It's really beautiful out tonight.

I broke the normal Sunday night routine of dishes, laundry and dispatching children to the shower to get ready for work and school on Monday to come sit out on the patio and think, which means write, for a bit.

I'm really bummed about how Sunday's have turned out for me and my family.

This summer it will have been 2 years (I think) since my church peacefully parted ways. Our small number of families set out to find a new church family and our pastor followed the call on his life to teach... all over the world. Between baseball tournaments for Connor and my work schedule, I have been at church maybe 2 Sunday's a month at most. When I do go, it's not always at the same place. We just haven't settled anywhere.

 I want to find a church with a Saturday or midweek worship so that if baseball or my work schedule don't allow us to go on Sunday we still have a chance to meet. This weekend was one of those weekends when neither Saturday nor Sunday would have worked for church since Connor had a tournament that extended into the evening Saturday and took up the morning on Sunday. And it's nearly unheard of to have a Sunday evening service anymore. I miss that. Growing up we were at church Sunday morning, Sunday evening and Wednesday night. Not that that makes you special or a better person, but it's just so refreshing to pause from the business of daily life to have dedicated times (multiple times, not 1 hour on Sunday morning) when you can go hear the preaching of God's word and join with others in worship. I miss it. A lot.

We have fun baby goats running and jumping around out there in the goat yard. Six in total. Five are bucklings (male goats). And a lone baby girl (doeling). We'll keep the doeling. All the bucklings will be wethered (castrated) and sold. I wanted to try raising some of the boys for meat, but I'm having a really hard time thinking about actually carrying that plan out. And my macho-man husband isn't helping. When I told him my idea about raising them until 8 months of age and then having them butchered, he protested. He can't handle the idea of eating something he watched grow in our backyard. That's the whole point actually... to know where your food comes from and that it was raised in an ethical and healthy way. But it is hard. I think I could go through with it, as long as I don't have to do the killing (and I won't), but I'm still undecided. I'll probably put them up for sale, knowing they'll be somebody's barbecue, and if the don't sell, I'll destine them for the freezer in 8 months.  I'll probably have to schedule that freezer day on a day when my husband's at work... he'll have no idea when dinner's served.

Goats Make Soap Co. had our last booth at the Momma's Organic Farmer's Market at Parkwest in Peoria yesterday.  We were invited to be regular's next year.  I don't know what we're going to do over the summer.  We've developed a regular customer base, and for now we are able (just barely) to keep up with the demand for our soaps and lotions.  Time is the issue.  Working full-time, raising sons, married life, goat farming... our days are full. We're discussing making a formal business plan.  We're also planning to approach Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Tractor Supply and Ace Hardware about become a vendor so that our soaps will be stocked in their stores... at least in Arizona.  That's a HUGE deal.  Only because I have no idea how it works and I'm confident it'll require equipment to make much larger batches of soap and packaging that's suitable for store shelves.  We'll make the plans.  The Lord will direct the steps.

Connor has taken his first paying job as a farm-hand for a neighbor to do evening farm chores once a week.  She has twice as many goats as we do and a much more extensive (and beautiful) homestead going on.  I'm really proud of him.  The foundation is starting to get a frame.  The ditch I started digging when he was a baby is starting to take form.  I've been raising a man, not a boy these 13 years.  I pray with even more desperation and fervency for the next 13.  Unless the Lord builds the house, the laborers labor in vain.



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