29 August 2015

Getting Settled In

We've made it to our new home in our new village. And we are in love. It's market day today ...

17 August 2015

Switzerland: Alpine Days

 Switzerland is a stunner of a country. Truly, it's breathtaking no matter where you turn. We were here three years ago, and since, we've all been longing for a return.

Even though the weather has been cold and very foggy, it's hard not to be content. (Some days the fog has been so thick visibility is limited to 20-30 feet! It's a shame not to see the view every second.)
 Today we took a bus for our excursion. (It was a complete joy to ride and avoid driving the perilous switchback roads ourselves. When Pops' eyes widen and he takes a sharp intake of breath ... you know it's scary.)

And this is where we ended up. The hills were alive with song, as the cows on hillside had bells that sounded orchestral as they grazed. Magical.
We are staying in St Luc in the Valais region, or Val d'Anniviers. This is Lac de Moiry and is a glacial mineral depository. 

And this is Pops wearing a sweater with another sweater tied over his shoulders. I think he looks great, but he sighs and says he's been living in Europe too long ... 
It's been a very good thing for us to have some of this time to unwind together. All the preparing, cleaning, shipping, and planning required for our move was rather exhausting. Not to mention that on our way here, we managed a flat tire (but a miraculously fast, praise God, fix at a garage) and an incident with a scary road rage man. Still shaking that one off.

And of course, once we get to the south, we will have all of the adjustments that come with settling into a new locale and getting the children set up for school. It's been busy.

So our time here, together, is both a luxury and a necessity. Funny how the two can go hand-in-hand.
Preparations, for us, must included planned down-time. Even though we are doing some nutty, crazy stuff ... we really aren't a thrill-a-minute kind of family. We hit a wall pretty quickly if we out-pace ourselves. It's not about planning everything out perfectly ... it's just about knowing it won't all go as planned and it won't be perfect. And that's okay. 

And that is where down-time/family-time becomes a non-negotiable. (And it doesn't have to be a Swiss-vacation. I'm a big fan of stay-cations, too.) 
We have just a couple more days here until we press on.

Pops told me he is already dreaming of returning. He doesn't usually talk that way ... it must be the air up here.

04 August 2015

A New Kind of Adventure

 It's rather incredible we've been here a year. So very much has happened, been accomplished, struggled through, and deeply enjoyed. It is with mixed emotions that we complete our time here at La Cressonnière and move on to the next adventure.
I have never lived in the country before. Never observed the rhythms of farm life nor experienced the pace. And French country life has a uniqueness of its own. Cows taking a walk down the street, ancient stone barns being repaired, fishing at the la petite rive down by the old mill, taking walks after dinner and moving aside to let the tractors pass.

 It has been a blessing living here. We have been grateful for the space to roam and a peaceful respite from a busy world.
And yet, we are ready. This last week has been full of some rattling hiccups requiring hurried mental adjustments. Namely, we have discovered (for a variety of bureaucratic reasons), that we can no longer drive in France after October 1st. It's a long story. The American in me could not conceive of existing entirely without a car and I had a full two-day panic attack. For serious. A major kink in the plans.

I am still wrestling with nervousness, but we have come to a place of peace and trust in the Lord that this too is part of His plans for us. We are moving to a location where we can approach life on foot, bicycle, bus, and train. Not completely what we planned on, but possible. If we had planned to stay in the country ... impossible.
And God is good.

We pick up our visas next Monday (oh have mercy, let them be there and ready) and depart on Wednesday. With renewed visas in hand we will be able to exit and re-enter the country and have plans for a stop in Burgundy and Switzerland as we work our way down south. We shall enjoy the freedom of driving while we have it and prepare ourselves for a new kind adventure ahead.

"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, 
may your ears  hear a voice behind you, saying, 
This is the way; walk in it ..." 
Isaiah 30:21