Thursday, 19 July 2018

Farewell Comox Valley

It is our last day in the Comox Valley.  We officially roll out of town this afternoon.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018


Boxes... chaos... packing tape... toys... dishes...  more boxes... packing!

With just a week to go, our house is now totally in a state of chaos.  Being my personality that it is, my packing days began early, probably too early, as I purged and organized all the stuff that has accumulated for the past 13+ years.  Yet I managed to keep the chaos to an organized state, cleaning up after myself each day, clearing the counters, and sweeping and mopping floors.  Now we are a week away from D-day and there is no point of cleaning up as I go.  It is time to embrace the chaos around me, though everything in me aches to do otherwise.

I'm learning (again) about putting aside my needs for those of others.  I would rather push through, work hard, and get it all done no matter what stands in my way.  And yet there are two 4-year olds, crying for attention throughout this major life upheaval.  I've given them new toys but they want to play with me.  I pack a box, then stop to color.  I pack a box, and then they need a bike break.  I give them a snack and pack a box, but they want me to sit with them so we sit out on the deck and sit side by side enjoying a cold smoothie in the warm sunshine. 

I'm learning about my relationship with things, as I have been forced to take stock of every single item we own.  We have purged, dumped, donated and sold SO much stuff.  Yet I am not a minimalist.  But neither do I want to be ruled by "things."  (Almost) Every item I own has a use, a purpose, a meaning.  We share our lives with many people so many of the things I use provide an ease for hosting, entertaining, or supporting.  I also have growing kids, and what they need to learn and thrive changes with the seasons.  I like space to feel beautiful and warm.  I like everything to have a place.

I'm learning that I do not thrive in chaos (who really does?).  There are half finished piles everywhere, as the kids dash in and out of my rhythm of packing leaving toys and snacks behind.  I have no energy to keep up with the dishes throughout the day, but they have to be washed at some point, as the available supply dwindles.  There are piles of garbage, piles to donate, and piles to give away to friends or family.  It is summer holidays, and the kids have energy to burn, and there are people to say goodbye to - and the job of packing drags slowly on.  

The packing WILL get everybody tells me.  It may mean late, exhausting nights, and lots of screen time at the end so that we can focus in and get done.  My priority is not on pushing through, not pushing my kids aside, but getting the job done as best as I can.  It's not easy for me.  I've been closing to my breaking point and I'm sure it will come again.  I'm growing and learning.  Guess this is what moving is all about.  

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Goodbye to our First Home

The word arrived today, in bright red letters sprawling over the sign on our front lawn - SOLD!

Saturday, 2 June 2018

May...where did you go?

The month of May has just flown by! Can it really be June already?

This month was, by far, the most whirlwind month of my entire life.  We started the month with our trip to Calgary to candidate, and ended it with a house nearly sold and the countdown on until we move and start a new chapter of our lives.  In-between this month also included: announcing our resignation to our church, spending a week plus the  long weekend cleaning/packing/decluttering/beautifying our home to list on the market, listing our home on the market, showing our home (only lasted 3 days), taking a trip away to family camp with our church, and accepting an offer on our home!

Has anyone experienced such an action packed month?

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

New Beginnings

The Kangs are going on an adventure!  A permanent adventure, at that.  We are moving to Calgary!

My husband, Daniel, has accepted a position of lead pastor at an Alliance Church in Southeast Calgary.  It is kind of crazy, right?  I think I am still in shock about it all.

Let me tell you a bit about how we came to this decision.  I will say, this is probably one of the biggest and hardest decisions we have ever made.  Dan and I travelled to Calgary a few weeks ago to meet the church, and interview and see the city.  After such a long winter, Calgary was not the most beautiful place I have seen.  In fact, it was really quite ugly haha.  The snow had JUST melted a week prior, so the ground was brown and dead and nothing was in bloom on the trees yet.  The city is HUGE and still expanding, so everywhere you look there is a sea of houses.  It was such a drastic contrast to "green" life here on Vancouver Island.

However, the city itself seems cool and has a lot of features we loved.  And when we met the people at the church, we knew that was it.  The church is predominantly a Filipino church, with a desire to expand more multi-culturally.  That's where we come in.  Dan has had a dream of ministering as a pastor in a multi-cultural city setting for a number of years.  Over the past year, this vision has been growing and we started to explore different jobs.  We didn't expect that our search would lead us to Calgary, but it has.  Dan is also able to complete his Master's Degree, as the Alliance university is right in the city.  One of our other priorities is to give our children the chance to grow up amongst different cultures.  That can happen on a small scale in Comox, but it is quite limited in terms of opportunities.  We are excited to have them grow up in one of the fastest growing immigrant cities in Canada!

It is going to be heart-wrenchingly sad to leave our lives here.  Of course, I am an "island-girl" at heart.  I've had one foot on the island since I moved here at age 3.  More than that, though, this is our first real home.  Dan and I moved here 5 years into our marriage and bought our first home.  We brought home our fur-baby Kaya, and had many adventures with her.  We struggled through a long battle of infertility.  We said hello and goodbye and lived life with SO many people - homestay students, roommates, brothers and sisters in the faith, friends, and family!  And this is the place where we first brought our beautiful baby boys home to.

Our future ahead is still uncertain.  We don't know yet where we will live. I don't know where I will work.  The kids will start Kindergarten in a new city with all new friends.  And yet, we believe without a shadow of a doubt that God has orchestrated this down to the last detail.  We are stepping out in faith, following the call on our hearts to proclaim His name to the nations.

Wow, so there it is.  I still can't believe this is actually happening.  Like I said, my soul is still in shock as I start to experience the range of emotions this move brings with it.  I plan to write about our journey and our new adventures, probably in a new blog, so I'll keep you posted! 

To the adventure ahead! 

Monday, 23 April 2018

Little boys

I am a mom of little boys.

When I was pregnant with the twins, I was convinced they were a boy and a girl.  We didn't find out ahead of time what their gender was.  From what we could tell from the outside, they seemed so different - heart rates, movements, size and shape.  We even tried the old wives' tales, which was tricky with twins, but I swear with the ring test, one side of my belly responded differently than the other side!  So we just planned for one of each.  Turns out, we were wrong.  And now I am a mom of two boys.

I have to say that I am thrilled to have boys.  For as long as I can remember, I have LOVED little boys.  From the time I was little, my first neighbourhood friends were little boys and I remember collecting ants and playing in the dirt with them.  When I was in youth group and helped with the little kids groups, I always had a soft spot in my heart for little boys. There is just this wild, sweet, rough exploring side of boys that I have always loved.

Now I get to live with boyhood all around me.  It's not exactly what I expected.  It's not just muddy and aggressive and all about cars (though it was when they were little).  It's fast moving, and messy,  and competitive, and full of sound effects, and many sweet moments of snuggles and kisses.

Take the other day for example: We had a no agenda, no plans day at home.  By 7:30am they were convinced we HAD to make rockets.  We gathered supplies, built cardboard rockets and they were painting them.  While they dried I went out to work in the garden and they collected bugs and jumped on the trampoline.  We stopped for a snack/coffee break and watched the Snowbirds fly overhead.  They wouldn't sit to color but we spent a few minutes (max) using chalkboard paint outside.  Lunch, quiet time (which also only lasted a short time) and then it was time to head to the park.  They rode their bikes there, threw frisbees, played ball, rode bikes home, and stopped to climb on rocks.  At home I tried to get them to stay still for a few moments and lie in bed for a cuddle, and they crawled all over and made funny noises. I made dinner while they ran around with cars and blasted me with shooters from their airplanes.  They ate quickly, wiggling around the whole time, splashed in the bathtub making a mess all over, squealed and run around in their PJs, and finally tucked into bed for snuggles and lullabies.

No wonder when the day is done, I am wiped.  Emotionally, physically, mentally drained!  But when those little voices at the end of the day, whisper sweet nothings like, "I'll meet you in my dreams" and "When I grow up mom, can I marry you?  I love you so much" my heart melts and I am filled anew to take it all on for another day.  They are busy. They are loud.  They are messy.  They are sweet.  They are caring.  They are funny.  They are full of life.  Little boys.

Saturday, 14 April 2018

Saturday musings

Today my thoughts are whimsically floating this way and that, and I can't figure out what to sit down and write about.

It is the end of the day.  I am sitting with a glass of wine, a sweet potato Paleo brownie, and a pile of folded laundry surrounding me.  Today was a "deal-with-it" day.  The house needed to be cleaned, the laundry needed to be washed, the fridge needed to be stocked, and the day was mostly rain-free, which meant we had to take the opportunity to work in the yard before it rains again.  It was a FULL day.  I am wiped.  I am content.

Right now the Canadian Forces Snowbirds and CF-18 are doing Spring training here in Comox.  Twice a day we get to watch our own air show as they fly overhead and practice formations.  The CF-18 is loud!  When it passes right over us, our house shakes and is filled with the noise.  I remember when the kids were babies we had to adjust their naptime since the fly-bys would wake them up.  Now it is such a treat for the boys to see!  Last night I dreamt all night about the CF-18.  You know you are a mom of boys when...  lol.

In the next few months we will be saying goodbye to a close friend of ours who has been staying with us for the past little while.  He's moving on to bigger and better things.  It has had me thinking, though, of all the people who have passed through the humble doors of our abode.  When we bought our home, Comox was in a housing boom.  The market was flooded!  We came one weekend and looked at 20 houses at least, all in our price range in this area.  There was just 2 of us and a dog back then, so we hadn't planned to buy such a large house, but with the prices, we couldn't resist.  We ended up with a good ol' BC box (as they say) with 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.  The layout was just right that we have all we need upstairs and the downstairs could be separated out for room and board.

So, just a few weeks after we moved in, we started hosting International students.  Now the stories I have about that can go on and on... but suffice it to say, our house has been well lived in!  We have had around 20 students come and go through our doors, and have been able to host friends and family needing a place to stay for a while.  I do enjoy my privacy and space, so I have to admit this has been challenging at times, but it also has filled our lives with such richness.  We've learned about ourselves, and expanded our horizons through the lives of others.  The friends who have stayed with us really have become family.   It's been nearly 8 years in this house and I can say with certainty that it has been a HOME.  There is nothing sweeter than home.