Monday, December 31, 2012

A New Dawn....

Well, the day has come....the first steps down this new path God has called us to have been taken. And, might I add, where God leads, God will provide. Yesterday, (Friday, Dec. 28th) was Noble County's Swearing In Ceremony. That means if was officially Scott's last day as Noble County Surveyor. Sixteen years. That's 80% of our married life! It's the only job our 5 youngest children have ever known their dad to do. Hannah was 1 when Scott took over as County Surveyor. She really remembers nothing else. Patrick was 5 at the time. He may remember bits and pieces of the job before but probably not much. Even I barely remember what life was like....before.

Heading out for a parade in '96

These last few weeks of December have found me thinking, praying and reminiscing about what's to come and where we've been. I've discovered there are some things about this job that I'll miss and some things that I won't. Take my ramblings for what they're worth....ramblings.

Our very first Swearing-In Ceremony, Jan. 1997. I was ready to pop with Zachery. :)

What I'll miss most:

           Scott was almost always out and about looking at ditches, talking with landowners, meeting with contractors at job sites, etc. It was easy for him to pop home if  I needed help with something or maybe it was a rough day and our autistic teen was having a major meltdown and I didn't have anything left to give. Scott could stop by and pick him up. Give both of us a needed break. This aspect of the job was one of the things that made 10 years of foster parenting doable for our family.  If you've never fostered, you have no idea how many hours and hours you are on the road every week taking your foster child/ren to visits, therapies, doctor/specialist appintments, etc. It can be mind blowing! With the flexibility Scott had, he could run kids to or from visits and go to court hearings. It was a tremendous help!  The flexibility allowed our family to participate in numerous family mission trips. I know he'll miss his annual trip to WOL Canada with the teens from church. Not sure what his new job will mean for our annual family trip to WOL NY, either. We'll find a way to make that one work, I'm sure!  The flexibility also allowed him to attend most of the sports activities that Hannah and Noah have been involved with. He was able to attend Hannah's Volleyball Nationals in Missouri this past fall knowing he wouldn't be able to go during her senior year next fall (smack dab in the middle of harvest season).  Yes, I would say flexibility is what I'll miss the most! :)

            Yep. I'll be honest and say's not that the pay was incredible, Scott could have made more many other places. But to make the changes in position it will mean a drastic cut in pay. If God chooses to bless the new surveying business the pay cut won't last forever. I know, I know, it's not all about the money, but since we're in the middle of building a new house and adopting another child I tend to lean a little toward "freak-out" mode. 

Third Swearing-In Ceremony, Jan. 2005

Now for a list of some of the things I won't miss:

            The looonnngg, crazy, never routine hours of the job. As a public employee you are on-call 24/7. I knew we were in trouble when..... The day before he took office for the very first time 16 years ago was a Sunday in September. We were having Hannah's first Birthday party. The house was full of family when some stranger showed up at our door insisting that Scott come with him to look at some ditch that couldn't wait another hour or two.  Yeah, from that moment on I knew he was no longer ours only. :( I won't miss the phone calls at home from outraged landowners demanding I tell them how Scott's going to fix their problem. How on earth should I know?! How about the Christmas Day he spent babysitting a flooding problem? Meetings that lasted long into the night. Days that kept him running around the county and he had to stay after hours to get caught up on office work and miss supper with his family. That wasn't occasionally, that was several nights a week some months. 

            Having to ask people to let you keep your job for the next four years is physically and emotionally exhausting for the entire family. We've had some easy, breezy campaigns and we've had some "knife in your gut", "ugliness of humanity" campaigns. The last one was the worst. This time our kids were old enough to read the papers themselves. To hear people tell blatant lies about their father is something as a parent you are never prepared to help your children through. My children have gone to the doors of strangers who had horrible things to say about their daddy as they passed out campaign flyers. One time Hannah and a friend were passing out flyers and some strange woman proceeded to tell them what a no good crook that
Zeigler fellow was. As they turned to walk away from the woman after she had spewed her venom they heard her sudden intake of breath as she read ZEIGLER on the back of Hannah's volleyball sweatshirt. Yes, the whole family is involved and pays a price if a price is demanded (it always is to some extent) even in small town elections. 

Oh how ready I am to turn the page to this new chapter. There's so much more I could compain about with this job. But I don't want to focus on the negative. The last four years have been rougher than most. Don't misunderstand me. I don't expect this new job to be without it's flaws or challenges. (Scott doesn't know how to work a 40 hour week so the long hours issue will still be there.) I'm just really looking forward to a brand new set of flaws and challenges. :) God truly has blessed us both through the surveyor position at the county and with this new opportunity. I can't wait to see where He takes us!!

     One of the highlights! Scott was named County Surveyor of the Year in 1999!!

Posing for the paper. Hannah was mad that Patrick got to hold the plaque. Did she tell us why she was throwing a fit at the time? NO! Several years later when we were looking at pics she tells us why she was throwing a fit. Oy vay!! 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Homeschool Refreshment

A few weeks ago, Scott, Hannah and I had the opportunity to attend the Great Midwest Homeschool Convention in Cincinnati, Ohio. What an incredible time of refreshment that weekend was for me! We heard some great speakers like....
Susan Kemmerer from School House Publishing and my long time mentor (through her books, anyway), Diana Waring, Dr. Jobe Martrin from Creation Ministries International, Kirk Martin from Celebrate Calm, Dr. Jay Wile from Apologia, Dr. Susan Wise Bauer, author of the Story of the World Series, Carol Burton from Burton Reading, and Carolyn Schulte from Flowering Baby, LLC. There were probably some others that Scott attended but that's who I can remember.
It was such an encouragement and water for my homeschooling soul to attend this convention. The price of the convention is extremely reasonable and if you stay across the river in Kentucky like we did, the hotels are just as nice with more reasonable prices. I would highly recommend it!
I think Scott's favorites were Dr. Jobe Martin and Kirk Martin. Mine were Diana Waring and Susan Kemmerer. I bought Susan's book and plan to blog about what the Lord is doing in my heart through her biblical view of mothering. It was a thrill to meet Diana Waring! She and her husband are moving to Anderson, IN from Seatle, WA this summer. I'm hoping to be able to schedule her to come speak to our homeschool group soon!! Hannah's favorite was Carolyn Schulte. Carolyn spoke on teaching young children with special needs. Hannah has such a heart for little ones and especially those with learning challenges. She is looking into a career in therapy (speech or physical, probably) field and wants to work with small children. Isn't it amazing how God places people or ministries in your life to give you direction for the future?!
                                        Hannah and Chuck Black
Our favorite part of the trip, though, was meeting one of our boys' favorite authors, Chuck Black! He has written the Kingdom Series, a Biblical allegory set in a medieval time period that covers the time period of  Genesis to Revelation. They are full of action and adventure where swords, knights and battles are all Biblically symbolic. They are full of Godly character lessons! And there is no magic, mysticism, or wizardry in the books.
We began collecting the audio versions of the books for Patrick when he was young and they have all since passed down to Noah. Chuck has a second series out called The Knights of Arrethtrae. Each of those is based on the specific knights from the Kingdom series and deals with character qualities. We're beginning to collect those; picked up a new one while we were at the convention. :)
We got to meet Chuck's family and shared some of our favorite parts of the books with his son. He reads all of his books to his kids first before publishing. We bought a poster for Noah from one of his favorite books and Chuck signed it for him. I don't know who was more excited....Hannah and I to give it to Noah or Noah to recieve it! :)
 Be valiant for the King! Chuck Black Heb 4:12

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A New Chapter Begins.....

I love the periods in my life when I strive to see the hand of God working and the last few weeks have shown He's working in our lives. Yesterday when I woke up there was a definite sense of a new chapter beginning in our lives. After 16 years as the Noble County Surveyor, Scott lost his run in the primary election. It was a bitter-sweet night for all of us. Every election (this was our 5th) has it's own fears and anxieties with it but through the years God has been using these stressful campaigns to draw me near to Him and teach me to utterly rely on His faithfulness no matter what the outcome. I was completely prepared last night for this loss. No, it wasn't expected, but I never once felt devastated and fearful for the future. We are held in the palm of a mighty God and He sees our future. He has plans for us that we can't yet see. There are soooo many directions Scott could turn. The prospects are literally exciting! I must also say that I will be thrilled to have my husband back. In his current position he is on-call 24/7/365. We've had him miss family birthday parties and even one Christmas Day! Yuck! Scott loves his job as County Surveyor and he's good at it! He's a people person but he's also very good at listening to people vent and not taking it personally. Believe me, he gets a lot of that in his position. He tells a story of one man coming in to the office and ranting and raving for quite some time and Scott just nodded and listened. Finally the man said, "Am I ever going to make you angry?!" Scott smiled and said, "Not today, you won't." Haha! I love my husband!! With his gentle leading and hard work ethic and fully relying on God's providence we will be fine. God is good all the time!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Quick June Review...

June was busy, busy, busy! I went to a couple Homeschool Used Book sales and was able to sell a few things. Noah went to one with me and we had some good bonding time. Patty went to the second one with me and it was great to spend the day with my teen! We even went to lunch together. I can't remember the last time just the two of us went out to lunch.
While I was doing book sales, Scott and Hannah were on the Jr. High SMO (summer mission outreach) in Canada. They had a great time and I'll have Hannah make a slide-show or two of pics later. We had several graduation parties this month. It seems those invites greatly multiply the older your children get. Their friends become family friends and suddenly our social calendar is full to overflowing. What a blessing!
Zac spent a week at Red Cedar in Fort Wayne for Autism camp. He did horse therapy everyday along with karate, fishing, canoeing, arts and crafts and lots more! He loves it!! He raved about it so much last year that Noah has begged this year to get to go to Red Cedar for camp himself this summer. His week at camp is in August. I hope he enjoys it as much as Zac.
On July 4th, Patty headed off on his Sr. High SMO trip to Hazzard County, Kentucky. The teens were putting on a Vacation Bible School in the evenings for a small church we support in McRoberts, KY. During the day they would be working on any projects the church needed done. He is on his way home as I type. I can't wait to hug my little boy and have his spark back in our home! What am I going to do when he heads off to college?
4-H starts this week. Another busy month for us!

WOL, NY part 2

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Word of Life, NY part 1

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She's Ours!!!

Our prayers, our faith, our patience rewarded. Hebrews 11:1

It is with great joy

we introduce the

newest Zeigler...

Naomi Beth

born January 19, 2007

adopted forever into

our hearts

May 18, 2009

Proud parents... Scott & Annette

Adoring siblings... Patrick, Hannah,

Zachery, & Noah