Time has been flying by and our current Utah stay is going quickly.
The past year has taught us many things. Among them, the rapid passage of time in each place we have been, and also the yearning for a place to “park,” if only for short periods of time between our sojourns.
On our return to Utah, it became clear that the hassle of living out of 3 storage units, and the “unique” circumstances of Airbnb-living here could be avoided with a home base of some sort.
Lehi, Utah (pron. Lee-high) is a small city between Salt Lake and Orem. It is quaint and cutting edge at the same time. A local landmark is the Lehi Roller Mills, featured in the 1984 Kevin Bacon movie “Footloose.” Lehi is also known for its “Silicon Slopes,” similar to Silicon Valley and home to countless high tech startups and established companies such as Adobe, Intel/Micron, SanDisk, doTerra, and Ancestry.com. Thanksgiving Point is a big attraction in Lehi along Highway I-15 that boasts beautiful gardens and special events, interactive museums, petting farm, butterfly house, restaurants, IMAX and other theaters.
We were blessed to quickly find and buy a small two-family home in old town Lehi. We will be the basement dwellers between road trips, and Christopher and Kristen with their 3 young ones will rent the main floor and care for the place as we continue “service nomading” for awhile longer. Our travels have required continued flexibility as we adjust some of our original plans. It has been great to spend time with family and friends this summer.
In May, to celebrate Jeff’s 29th birthday (tee-hee), we traveled to the west Utah desert for some rock hounding and dirt biking. The first day was spent chiseling for 400 million year-old trilobite fossils. That made turning 61 feel like a new birth, compared to the ol’ trilobites!
Day 2 was a real blast with some of the kids joining us at Topaz Mountain, where we were able to dynamite fresh rhyolite and hammer/chip away for prized Topaz gemstones. It was a great adventure and all were able to find plenty of treasures.
Day 3 was spent on our dirt bikes at the Amasa Basin area near Notch Peak. The trails were great and we enjoyed exploring the old mines and wide open riding areas. Karen is enjoying her new hip armor, especially after collecting some gnarly bruises last season.
June was busy moving to the house, routine doctor appointments, maintaining a heavy workload, and providentially being here to assist Ethan after he and his car were the unlucky target of an inattentive driver who ran a red light. A ruptured spleen, bruised lung, concussion and cancelled summer work have been the more critical damages. Fortunately, with Mom nearby, his recovery is going well. Wish we could say as much for the insurance system and challenges of restoring normalcy to Ethan’s life.
July 4th in the Provo area is as “Red White and Blue” a place as anywhere, and we celebrated by attending the “Stadium of Fire” with some of the family. Lots of emotions, as it was the first time we had been in a large gathering for almost two years or participated in the big event, including an impromptu stadium sing-along with Lee Greenwood leading “God Bless the USA” (chills….)
A huge July highlight is a new song daughter Emma cowrote with the EDM artist ILLENIUM about her experiences associated with our mortal loss of Braden, almost three years ago now. “Brave Soul” was publicly released last Friday as the final track on ILLENIUM’s new album “Fallen Embers.” You can click on the album cover below to listen!
In other wonderful news, we are thrilled that Ramila, one of our Nepalese “adopted children” is now serving a full time mission in Bangalore, India. She is a sweet sister missionary and we are confident that her sincere testimony of Jesus Christ will touch many lives.
Even with all the craziness and uncertainty of the times, there is much good in the world and there is much good to do.
With a bit over a month to go before hitting the road again, it will be a busy blend of work, quality time with family/friends, and some fun to fill the gaps.