Friday, January 11, 2008

We’ve been practically “off the grid” since we arrived in Tennessee seven days ago. While Jerry’s getting an intense Aviation Focus with a topnotch instructor, 20 minutes away in town and cell-phone coverage area; the kids and I are staying at a little cabin in the Roan Mountains with no television, cell phone coverage or internet connection. This place is great for its intended purpose -as a retreat center for anyone in ministry. But for this modern family used to Googling anything that crosses their minds, regularly face-booking and e-mailing… we feel quite a bit cut off. We joke that this is training for living in the bush in Africa. (Although, Jerry notes, at least there we’ll have internet via satellite!)

While Jerry’s down at the airport flying, the kids and I really are cut off as we don’t have a vehicle either. But it does provide me plenty of uninterrupted time to home school the kids with few distractions!! And once “school’s” over for the day, they love walking alongside the creek that runs under our cabin or on the hill behind it. I love the beauty and quiet of it here too except for my dear internet connection I pine for; and the fact that the snow covering we arrived to has melted off and allowed…something…I’m apparently allergic to, to drive me mad as my nose has become a veritable faucet. (Yes, we did venture into town for meds, but they make me so drowsy I have to weigh the benefits of relief and letting the kids run around attended only by a very sleepy mommy!) On the occasions when the kids and I go with Jerry down the mountain into town, we’ve enjoyed the scenery. And Grace noted the relief of pressure in her ears by announcing at one point, “Hey, I have my loud back!” Sarcastically, we celebrated with her.

We decided to conquer our every increasing pile of laundry on Sunday afternoon, when, to our chagrin we discovered the retreat center’s Laundromat was closed. So down the mountain into town to wash clothes and check e-mail we went. At the airport, we learned how much junk mail we were missing. We also discovered Olivia had won 3rd place in her age group in an art contest she had entered with other home-schoolers before Christmas! She was to make a collage of a family holiday tradition. She cut and glued pictures of her, Grace & Isaiah sledding in the snow and decorating the Christmas tree. We wonder if both of those traditions will be only memories in Africa. I think you should be able to find her name on the website for Miller Pads and Paper (a home-school art supply store out of Wisconsin that put on the contest), but I don’t know for sure and don’t know the website because I’m internet-deficient, you’ll recall J Anyway, please congratulate her when you see her!

Soooo, back to the laundry excursion, we found an open, mostly clean-Laundromat and had everything in a washer and kids mostly content coloring with mom, when more patrons entered and we discovered tour launrdromat was a “smoking certainly allowed” Laundromat! So after the 45 minute wash and half hour dry plus folding time exposure to second-hand smoke, I do have doubts for a load of mountain-fresh smelling clothes. So if you should have the pleasure of smelling us in the next couple of weeks, you’ll understand why we smell like a tiny Tennessee 24 hour Laundromat. About 20 minutes into the washing and already bored coloring with mom, Grace remarked to Dad, “This is way more unfunner than it first looked!”

This post is being made on a very solitary laptop up in Roan Mountain, TN, and will be posted on our blog by my wonderful hubby tomorrow…who by the way is learning a lot from his instructor but at times feels overwhelmed by all there is to be learned or is at times unhappy with his progress (like pattern work….whatever that is J) All to say, He IS doing great, but spending almost eight years as en engineer has rubbed off on him and he wants to be perfect up front!

This coming Sunday we’ll drive to somewhere in Kentucky to meet my parents and exchange children and vehicles. They have bravely offered to watch AND HOME SCHOOL our kids while Jerry takes the Technical Evaluation Jan 15-26 in North Carolina. Please pray for them. J

In conclusion, please remember to be thankful for your home washer & dryer, your internet connection, cell phone coverage, wonderful parents that will watch your kids when you can’t, and please continue to hold us in your prayers, Jerry especially!

As if you couldn’t tell it was me writing,

Breanna :P

1 comment:

butchjala said...

Hi Breanna,

Your comments are so-o-o-o-o interesting.

We're planning to build a log cabin, off the grid, of course, in far western Tennessee.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Feline (in Chicago)