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May 24, 2008

There is an old saying that goes: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” I have no idea who said this first, though it reminds me of Erma Bombeck.

This week my family has been making a lot of lemonade. It was supposed to be my hubby’s vacation. The plan was to go camping and to take the kids to a nearby space museum. So we spent most of last week cleaning, repairing and replacing the old camping gear to get ready for the trip. Clothes packed, coolers filled, van loaded, we started toward our destination. About an hour from home the transmission in the van decided to spring a huge leak. A visit to a local transmission shop did not provide good news. We turned around and attempted to make it back home but about half way there the transmission gave up for good. Of course, the spot were it died was out of cell phone range. A very nice gentleman allowed us to use his phone and we were able to get a tow truck and a ride home. He was also nice enough to let us wait on his shaded front porch until help arrived. We had a lovely visit during our wait.

We arrived back home with kids (and a hubby) who were distraught that we were not going camping. So I took the youngest on my knee and asked if he would like to camp in the yard since the van was dead. You should have seen his eyes light up. We spent the rest of the afternoon locating the perfect “camp site” and setting up camp. We cooked supper outside, even roasted marshmallows. The house was referred to as the “bath house” or the “camp store” depending on whether we needed the bathrooms or some other part of the house. Mom was still allowed to have computer access and the kids got the enjoy the great outdoors. Our second night was spent on the living room floor due to thunderstorms but we put on a movie and still had a great time. We probably had as much fun as if we had been at a real campground. We haven’t laughed so much in ages.

We have used the remainder of the week to garden, get a few baby chicks to raise, read, knit, listen to music and generally goof off. Yesterday, the kids even honored us by cooking an anniversary dinner. It has been a nice time of family bonding after all.

Of course, we are still haven’t made it to the space museum, we are still concerned about how to afford major repairs or replacement for our van and our only vehicle doesn’t have an operational air conditioner. Gas prices and food prices are on the rise and I didn’t get that job I was hoping to get. Life is full of lemons lately but we still managed to have a good time and we know we will get by. We know that God will provide our needs even if we do have to suffer some temporary inconveniences. The situation reminded me of Paul’s exhortations to the church at Philippi.

… for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:11-13

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