So, Peter’s off!  His plane left Spokane early this morning and he called me this afternoon from New York after the first leg of the trip.  He won’t call from Brussels, so the next time we talk he’ll be in Africa.  It seems so strange that a person can wake up in one corner of the world and only a day or two later be in another corner… It makes the world seem so much more reachable when you think about it this way.  At any given moment we are all just a few plane rides away from the other end of the earth.

I was so tired today.  Peter and I stayed up through the night because by the time we finally finished packing and rearranging his bags and were ready for bed, we had under an hour until we had to leave for the airport (combination of getting a late start from home; Peter having to put in a few hours on a job down here; having to make a couple last minute trips to the store… and a very, very early departure time.)  And who wants to go to bed for only an hour?  It was actually fun staying up together.  We haven’t pulled an all-nighter together in a long time and I loved talking and laughing into the wee hours of the morning… it made me realize how much I’m going to miss him.  Even though I am used to him being away from home often on 2-3 day business trips, there have only been a handful of times in the last fifteen years of our friendship that we’ve been apart this long.  Yeah, I know it’s not a long trip and I’m not complaining… (well, let it just be said here and now that I would have LOVED to have gone too!!!) …I think part of it is knowing that he is at least 24 hours of travel time away. 

You should have seen his bags!  They were bursting at the seams with donations for various orphanages and gifts for Ahmad’s family and items for some of the missionary families Peter contacted.  I was so surprised that we only had to remove about ten pounds total to bring them down to the max weight limit.  We loved getting the chance to fill the luggage almost completely with donations and were blessed by friends stopping by with stuff to add.  What an amazing thing it is to give.  Right now I am ready to give away everything we own.  (I’m not saying I’m always like this!  I struggle with holding on to things as much as the next person… but right now on the heels of Peter leaving with his bags full, I just want to pack up all the stuff that we don’t use and don’t need and give it to people who honest-to-goodness really, really need it.  Heck, I’m ready to give it ALL away — even the stuff we think we need…  ‘Cause in the grand scheme of things, how much do we really, truly need?  I feel God lovingly convicting me more and more in this area and the words “…freely give” are deeply embedded upon my internal conversation right now.  More thoughts on this later…)

Anyway, thankfully I got a little sleep today while my mom watched Jo and Henry — but I am going to make this brief so I can get to bed at a decent hour tonight.  The kids and I are going to stay with my parents for a few days before heading home, and hopefully I can catch up on all the things that have been pushed to the side the last few weeks as we’ve been getting ready for Peter’s trip… like finishing the post about the non-profit… and working on the RLC mall… and catching up on phone calls… and… and… :0)