I’m Baack!!


First, an apology:

I’m sorry it’s taken so long to return to my series, my website, and to YOU, my faithful readers and friends.

It’s been a very, very busy few months since I last posted in April.

The busy-ness began with a visit from my parents, who live 850 miles away. They brought with them my best friend from childhood, an astonishing event on many levels, since there’d been some ‘bad blood’ stemming back to the early 70’s when Laura and I ran away from home (between  the same two cities – 850 miles) and eventually landed ourselves in a residential girls’ home. But that’s a whole other story waiting be told in my memoirs… which will be packed, I assure you, with all kinds of strange, salacious, and absolutely true stories worth the telling (and the reading!) It was also amazing because Laura hadn’t visited me in my own home since 1974.

Anyway, the unlikely companions ended up having a fabulous two-day road trip , my father being an excellent historian/tour guide/ storyteller,  my mother having 80+ years of favourite family anecdotes, and Laura being an avid and attentive listener, especially since they haven’t really talked since 1970 and all the good old stories were new to her.

I was initially worried about how to spend the first few days with all three of them, but the magic happened, and we created some funny and tasty memories together. My folks went on to visit the rest of their West Coast family, while Laura and I spent five more wonderful days talking non-stop. (We talk on the phone regularly, but we also have that insatiable kind of friendship that never runs out of mutual curiosity, and we didn’t want to waste an hour under the pretense of “sight-seeing” — though we took a lot of walks-and-talks together.)

Then the hard work began. As some of you know, Henry accepted a new ministry opportunity last year in the city of Kelowna (about four hours away), where he’s been leading a church and living in a rented room. I stayed here while our daughter finished her last year of high school. Then I started getting our house ready to put on the market so we could finally start our new life in Kelowna.

The house wasn’t in bad shape, but it’s a thirty-four-year-old ‘has been’, competing with lots of fancy-schmantzy new-builds and up-to-the-minute renos in a fast-growing community. I‘ll spare you the list of what I did and got done over the past two and a half months. Let me just say that I have never worked so hard, so long, and so doggedly in my life – and I’m a hard-core worker-bee by design. Every morning I’d roll out of bed into my painter’s clothes (which can almost stand, stir, and paint on their own by now), drink my morning tea, and work till 10 pm or midnight. My life became an endless tunnel of toil, as I cleaned, painted, packed and purged my way to the elusive light at the end of it. There were days I feared there WAS no light and no end, ever. But today the house is finally FOR SALE, realtors and prospective buyers have started coming (eight showings on the first day), and the phone keeps ringing. Hopefully we can soon hang out the glorious SOLD sign, I can rescue my husband from his lonely rented room, and we can get started on the next chapter together

We’re empty-nesters. We’re down-sizing. We can’t wait to devote ourselves to our new friends in Kelowna, the ministry, and WRITING — which is now a big part of what I want to do. Both of us have books waiting to be written.

I’m already envisioning my new writing room and the colours I want to paint our next home – yes, I’m incorrigible! Colour has a huge impact on my mood and tranquility. (My family doesn’t always get it, but some of you know exactly what I mean.) So there might be a little more ‘away’ time from the blog coming up, unless we fortuitously find a new place in all the right colours….which is possible, but not likely.

Meanwhile, I’m recommitting to my “Turn, Turn, Turn” series, which has been languishing like an old friend in an unfinished room.

But let’s not talk about unfinished rooms anymore. I’m so over that.

For now.

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22 replies »

    • Great to hear Marilyn!
      congrats Henry and remember to let folks help you as much as they want to. I know I wouldve done more if Id known better what was needed. So looking forward to the books and visiting you both in your new Kelowna home and hearing Henry preach the word. Love you both and Tasha and Dan. Matt


      • Thanks, Matt! Actually, I DO have a couple of things you could help me with that need to get done in the next couple of days.. Please give me a call or stop by!


    • Hi Marilyn, SO glad you’re back writing, keep the blog coming! And all the best to Henry and the new work in Kelowna.
      Much Love, Jayson & Laura Colby


      • Hey Jason and Laura! Sorry not to respond to your message sooner…. as you can infer from my latest post, I haven’t had much time to even think about my blog. But I’m eager to get back to it very soon…. Tackling those darn baseboards and getting ready to unpack my office stuff soon. Love to both of you and your family! And please give a big hug to C & A for us, too.


  1. I have read bits and pieces of what you’ve written as Henry’s posted links on FB. Thrilled to know you have a blog! The ‘blogosphere space’ I created for myself about three years ago has been one of the most therapeutic, positive things I think I’ve ever done. I will “follow” and look forward to taking some time over vacation in August to reading your series…going back to the London bit first as you suggested and getting caught up. Brian and I are well, on our two feet, with two very grown kiddos, a strong remnant of faith and no current church affiliation. I’m excited to ‘rediscover’ you through this space and reconnect! Adrienne

    Liked by 1 person

    • What a pleasure to hear from you! The last ‘indirect’ connection I had with you was through my friendship with your mom in Philly. I’m going to check out your blog, too — thanks for letting me know about it! Hello to Brian, too, from both of us. We go WAY back, don’t we?


  2. Hi Marilyn, I sent an email to you thru your husband quite a while ago…not sure if you received it…I desperately need your help/advice for my spiritual journey. Any chance I can contact you??? Janice King


    • Hi Janice, I don’t remember getting an email from you. I prefer not to offer ‘long-distance’ advice, esp. to someone I don’t know, in a situation that is also unknown to me. But I will pray for you! Hopefully you can find someone who knows you and your situation well. Best wishes.


  3. Hi Marilyn, I’ve enjoyed reading your posts! You have very unique vivid ways to describe about yourself. Feel like I get new opportunities getting to know you. Hope the whole unsettling part of ‘in-between’ stage will be over, and you can reunite with your husband in new place:-) Much warm wish from us V family!


    • Great to hear from you! I hope life’s treating you well on the Island. We actually have an offer on the house (official this morning), so let’s hope and pray that it all goes through. Maybe you can visit us in K someday!


    • Thanks, Tomoko. I’m happy to hear you’ve been reading… and do hope all’s well and happy with your family. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen you!


  4. Hi marilyn its its Joe how have you been I was at a International Church of Christ worship service recently some things that was said from the pulpit are really bothering me do you have another email that I could contact you on hopefully you could give me some biblical insight thanks Marilyn


  5. Hi Marilyn, I’ve read through your entire story series over my graveyard shift here in Oregon. In 1983, my wife and I moved to Boston in anticipation of bringing the Movement back to OKC. The expectation was six months of training and then we would be back in OKC spreading the Good News! Sometime early in 1984, I made a visit back to my rural home CoC to preach a message about our time in Boston. A couple of years ago I was reminded of something I said in that message from a man that was in the audience that evening so many years ago. I basically preached the Discipleship Study but I added a belief that I had at that time. That man recently asked me if I still believed the entire world would hear the message of Jesus in our generation. Of course, that is why many of us stayed and hoped to witness such a lofty goal. That warm thought of KNOWING it would happen is like a close friend still slowly dying. No, I don’t believe it anymore and I miss that firm belief. Thank you and Henry for all that you have done in the Lord’s name.


    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts. The ICOC DID plant more churches in more countries faster than any group I’ve ever heard of, and that’s impressive. Much good fruit and many seeds planted and still growing…. Even those who ‘left’ are still sharing the gospel with others. None of us will know how many souls were saved until all is revealed.. and I pray we’ll all be blown away!


  6. Hi Marilyn, thx for your update. Hope the house sold and that you’re on your way to your new location. I left Paris, I’m now in Arizona but leaving next monthf or Naples, Italy. The retiree’s life is pretty good. But I check in with you now and then to see how you’re doing. Can’t wait to read your book that you’re planning to write. Blessings. Bobbye


    • Thanks, Bobbye. Our house sold back in July, we JUST got subjects removed on the house we’re moving to, and moving day is TODAY. It’s been the most complicated, busy, nerve-wracking, stressful, move of my life… but I’m thankful the pieces are coming together! Hope to be blogging again by late September, as soon as I finish painting and setting up our new abode. Thanks for both of your encouraging comments today!! Perfect timing!


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