The end of this season, the start of the next

To every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under the heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

We have been blessed for a season with the amazing friends God sent our way in Mike and Jen and their two girls Gabriella and Adelynn. When we first met Mike and Jen, Gabriella was 2.5 – this past March she turned 5 and I can’t believe the time has gone so fast. As couples we’ve seen each other through many good and bad times and as friends we have grown close to one another and to God. I continue to be amazed watching this family and the love and faith they have for one another and in God and the passion with which they tackle everything thrown their way. I find it so difficult to believe that in 2.5 years they have not only found a church, become believers, been baptized (which we were again blessed to be witness to) had a baby, dedicated that baby, and pointed their lives so fully in the way of the cross. Mike knows more about the bible and has much more dedication to the Scriptures in his life than I have in mine, and I’ve been a believer since I was 8! I’m not sure what that says about me, but it does, I hope, make the understanding of their deep thirst for righteousness clear. Seriously, they are an amazing family and we have been so blessed by them and because of them.

However, as happens with military family’s they will be moving on from San Antonio in only a few short days. I cannot even begin to describe the ache in my heart because of this – suffice to say I am sobbing as I write this with tears streaming down my face. I hope they understand the fullness of how deeply they will be missed by not only Chris and I, but Inara too. They were her first baby sitters, and the only couple still that she is readily comfortable with. She loves their girls and she and Gabriella could play together for days I think.

It’s one thing to be able to explain this to Mike and Jen and have them understand, but how do you say goodbye to a five year old without having her see the fear and hurt in your eyes while reassuring her that El Passo will be fun, and she’ll make lots of great new friends, for her not to worry?

You buy her things of course! The trip to El Passo is being made by car, and I knew that Mike and Jenny would appreciate a little piece and quiet from the backseat along the way – even if only for a few minutes here and there. So – instead of showering Gabriella with noisy toys (as would only be fitting seeing as how one of Inara’s most obnoxiously noisy toys is a hand me down from them) we went with a quiet car bundle.
Cthulhu even consented to posing by it to give you an idea of the size. Actually he wanted to know why I was blocking a large sun patch in the front window and wouldn’t move when I wanted to take pictures.
The tote bag is a cheery shade of bright yellow with a hand stenciled G painted on the front with a matching red bow sewn onto one handle.
What’s in this thing you ask? Well, let me show you!There are two coloring and activity books, a crayon roll (that’s the thing with the monkey fabric) that I made, and an I Spy pillow (these are the coolest things ever!) and a really cute crocheted and stuffed Elephant (Gabriella’s favorite animal).
Everything is handmade (except the coloring books and the actual crayons (which are of course Crayolas and smelled so good as I was putting them in the roll)) with the Elephant (who’s name is Chase – how cute is that) and I Spy pillow coming from Etsy and the Crayon Roll and Bag (I bought the bag and did the embellishments myself) from my craft area.

I hope that she likes it, and it allows a bit of fun in the backseat without bothering Mike and Jen. I even requested the I Spy list be in pictures instead of words since she is still only learning to read and that way she wouldn’t have to ask what everything said.

Good luck in El Passo guys, we are praying God’s blessing upon you, your move, and your new home, and above all else, Mike’s health and safty under God’s protection when he is deployed next year.

We love you guys!

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