Sunday, September 29, 2013

Beginnings of a Dream Come True

*Could you please pray for my sweet friend, Aimee? She gave birth to her baby at 20 weeks gestation last week. I had the privilege of being able to see her sweet son shortly thereafter (truly, a sacred experience), and although she is surrounded by so much love at this time, his loss is difficult to bear. If you could remember her and her husband and their seven children in your prayers and your heart, I would really appreciate it a lot. Thank you!


I had the opportunity to squeal like a little girl on Friday.

Here's the scenario:
Brandon and me, driving along beautiful winding roads throughout southeastern Pennsylvania. Hills and farms, old churches and colonial homes are on every corner! We pass a hill and voila! Instant gorgeous properties with history and charm, all rolled up on a vista belonging in a painting. Brandon was laughing at me because I was giddy. Giddy! Complete with the clapping of hands!

Dear reader, I have a love for the color green.
And history.
And old colonial homes (think Regency England, too).
And the country and forests.
And Autumn is my favorite, favorite season.

I never knew --not once --in my dreams, that Pennsylvania was where I was meant to be. For years I have dreamt of England, or some amazing countryside I only see in novels and movies. I have pined for rolling hills with horses and sheep, farms separated by vast forests and streams.

I honestly did not know I would live there one day. Nor that it was to be found 30 miles west of Philadelphia! (Honestly, why didn't anyone tell me!?)

Heavenly Father has an amazing way in answering the prayers and dreams of our hearts. He is constantly surprising me with His goodness and His love. Things don't always work out for me the way I want, dear reader. Quite often, I have been told "no." I have been told "no" about a lot of things in my life. I've been reminded (by prophets, scriptures, family, church leaders, the Holy Ghost) that it's because He was waiting to bless me with something better, something more attainable, something more worthy of my dreams. But it was hard to believe because I was in the middle of it all, and I couldn't imagine something else.

But in a month we are moving to a house (just a rental for now) that is the beginning of those dreams come TRUE!

We had one day (Friday) to find a home. Our incredible realtor took us around all day, helping us search for our ideal location. And we found it, dear reader, we found it!

This colonial home sits on almost a full acre and backs up to a horse farm. There are fireplaces (wood!) and a screened porch, trees to climb, and a beautiful kitchen. There are five bedrooms and three bathrooms, and a garage! It's 20 minutes to Brandon's job, 25 minutes to our ward chapel, 30 minutes to the airport, 8 minutes to Costco, and 10 minutes to both the middle school and elementary school --which, by the way, are very highly rated! Our neighbors have children. There are Christian churches on every corner. It looks and feels like we live in the country, but we really don't.

(Photos courtesy of Google Maps. You can't see much because of the trees, but you get the gist!)

My Father-in-law was here tonight and we spoke very briefly about the excitement of finding this house. What he said to me, hit me hard: Everything is falling into place in this move. He's right, you know! We've sold our van. I've been able to sell household items and purge really well. We found the house in one day. Brandon's job is outstanding. We get to hire movers. Ward members and friends and family have been supportive in helping us move (watching kids, helping me clean, etc.). The only big hurdle left is to sell our house. And honestly? I'm not worried about it tonight. I'm feeling peaceful. It will sell, our house, and maybe not tomorrow, and maybe not before we move, but it will sell. All will be okay.

I bore my testimony today about how Heavenly Father guides us and loves us and answers our prayers in His time and in His way. I testified how almost 12 years ago, we were guided to buy our home, even though it was considered "too big" for our tiny family. We had one small baby! But now we have filled it to capacity! We have added five more children, and we are again being guided by Heavenly Father to move our brood to Pennsylvania.

Another quick story: Brandon has been approached by some companies here and there in his career, but this is the first time when a company has asked him to apply when I felt such immediate peace. Back in July when the process was starting, I truly knew that this was the right thing for us to do. I didn't know I knew it, but hindsight shows me that I did (does that make sense?). But it goes back even further! I knew change was coming nearly a year ago. I felt it. I felt the shifting of the winds (the sails, what-have-you), but I just didn't know what it would be... I feel Heavenly Father was preparing my heart and mind for what was coming.

And so, throughout this whole process, I have known it was right. Even when the stress piles high, even when Brandon and I argue about the way to transport all of us and our household items across the country, even when I know that the adjustment when I get there might be rough for me and the kids, even when the realization that things will not be easy hits me, even when I will miss the mountains --through it all, I know it is the right thing to do.

I love Heavenly Father. I love His love. I'm grateful for it. He helps dreams come true! Especially the ones we didn't even realize we wanted.

(Psssst! My next dream includes losing 60 pounds (seriously, it's a dream, don't judge) and to have another baby. I mean, if I can get Pennsylvania, why not that, too?)


evitafjord said...

How exciting - and beautiful. Your post tonight gives me hope and peace. We have just made a decision that means a major change in the next 9 months - after this school year, we're moving back to Utah to be near my inlaws who need our help and support - and nearer to my family. It's a decision that would have been easy any time 3 to 15 years ago, in fact I prayed for it to happen for a lot of that time. And now we are settled and happy and cozy here and we all know that means it's time for a big change ;) Wishing you continued peace and happiness in your adventure!

Katrina said...

Cheryl, I am glad you are so excited about your move to PA! When we got here, I was amazed at the green. My mother is from Germany, and we lived there for a few years when I was younger, and this felt like driving through Germany! My mother came out for a visit when I had my last little guy, and she was almost in tears because of how much it looked like Germany! I am so glad that things are falling into place for you! Good luck with the packing, etc!

Jocelyn Christensen said...

Why didn't anyone tell you? I told you, many times! At least I said it on my blog. Pennsylvania welcomes you! :) It's God's country!!!!

Emily said...

How perfect!!!!

Amanda D said...

It looks beautiful. I can't wait to follow along your journey!

Kevin and Lisa said...

Good luck on the new adventure. I feel like we are living the same "guidance from Heavenly father" we just didn't move quite as far as you. But I love the "everything is falling into place" feeling. Wish we could see you one last time, but I'll keep tabs on you through your blog! Good luck in PA Shaniqwah. (Is that how we spelled it?)

Mother of the Wild Boys said...


Cheryl said...

I am SO excited for you! I am SO jealous of you! What ward will you be in? What town are you in? You can email me with details!

Cheryl said...

Can we add in prayers for my husbands sister and husband who lost their sweet 2 year old in a tragic drowning accident last week? Our hearts are broken.

Cheryl said...

More info on my blog

Julie said...

PA sounds gorgeous and amazing!

Anonymous said...

Excited for you!

I'm from PA-so where is your lovely place! Thank you for sharing a perfect illustration of how God's timed answer exceed our expectations--patience is never easy but God's will is worth it.

Best to you,