we are back from northern california, and settling into warmer so. cal. weather.
but fresh in my mind are the smells, the sights and the feelings that come with a winter up north.
we were blessed to spend 7 days with my family in our family home in granite bay. the name has changed (it used to be called loomis), but the location has not...
we call it The Ranch.
8 acres of heritage oaks and huge granite rock outcroppings surround the cozy home where i have spent the last 30 years of my life(or at least some of my things have. technically i moved out 8 years ago, but until this past week, i stilled laid claim to my bedroom!)
we celebrated Christmas there, enjoying many days filled with dear loved ones.
this pic is on the front porch (where dan and i were married!) of my parent's home...
we were also able to enjoy watching my brother-in-law play drums at our family's church, play with our cousins in the snow, and reminisce about our many years of outdoor fun on the ranch.
here is a pic of our many small blessings climbing one of the big granite rocks that my brother and i spent years conquering!
on the very near horizon is a amazing new piece of property, where my folks, my sister (and her family) and my brother (and his family) all plan to build homes one day. this means saying goodbye to the ranch, which for me, is very hard to fathom.
this trip was full of bitter sweet moments for me, reliving all the fun times i had experienced over these 30 years living in an amazing home, on an amazing piece of land.
our final day there, we followed everyone over to the new property, where my brother and his family already live. we watched as my dad scrapped the ground on their part of the 10 acre parcel with his excavator, preparing the land for he and my mom to build a new home. as i watched (our boys couldn't get enough of the tractors!) i realized that what i loved most about the ranch was the time i had spent with my family there...not just the land itself.
i was filled with joy as i recognized the blessing of being alive, surrounded by family i absolutely love.
home is way more about who shares your last name, than it is about your address.
i sit now, though many hours from our nor. cal. loved ones, and praise God for His rich blessings He has poured over us these past many years.
what a gift the past has been to my heart!
what a merciful blessing the future will be!
what a pure joy to be alive, in this moment, right now!