16 May 2018



Deeper - adj. 1. extending or situated relatively far down from a surface: a deep pool.

It's been a long time since I've visited this space.  So much and so little has happened in this past year.  Losses, gains, movement, no movement.

My word for this year is "deeper." A challenge to go deeper in my faith, deeper in reading scripture, deeper in prayer, deeper in Christ and deeper in community with others. 

I am so thankful for the journey God has put me on, revealing His Word to me in new ways that have given me a hunger for His Word like I’ve never had before.

I recently came across Well-Watered Women in such a round about way through a picture of Homer, AK on Instagram. It’s always so amazingly crazy to me how God uses the most random of ways to reveal something to me.   What a treasure of resources I've found in this space!

A couple of weeks after my last post (from just over a year ago) and two days after Mother's Day, my world changed.  My mom passed away on May 16th, 2017.  As much as we rejoice that she is whole again with her Jesus and no longer confused by Alzheimer's, there's also sadness.  Grieving the years we lost due to Alzheimer's as well as just missing her presence.  It's a process and most days are good.  Mother's Day last year was the beginning of her last few days on this earth.  So many memories have started flooding back.

On a recent visit to see my dad, I came across some of my mom's writings. How precious it was to see her hand writing, read her thoughts and get a glimpse into her heart.  Such an encouragement on this journey to go deeper.  It's challenged me to record my own thoughts and what I'm learning about God's Word.  Maybe one day me kids will treasure mine as much as I treasure my mom’s.

The fact that it's May and I'm still thinking about my word for the year seems like I'm on the right track for what God wants to reveal to me this year!
Hungering for Him,

Tina B

04 May 2017

A Year and a Few

In my last post I only grazed the surface of us.  In the next few posts I'll go into more detail on some of our experiences.

Two years ago my mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.  She'd had Mild Cognitive Impairment for some time.  We'd hoped that's as far is it would go, but it was definitely progressing.

The next few months included a bit of grieving, reflecting and decisions.  My mom and dad were going through a lot of change and it was devastating to be so far away.  After much time praying, we decided we would take an early leave in November 2015 and go back to the States with the intent on making a conclusive decision.  I think, in our minds, we'd already made the decision to stay in the US.

In November 2015 we packed up our house in Horsham, England, put our things in storage, and took what we could on the plane with us to spend 6 months in the Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas area where we could be closer to family.  Even our beloved Kate (our kitty), made the trek with us.  Thanks to a friend at church that works in the shipping industry for allowing that to happen and not spend a fortune!

It was bittersweet to leave England.  We left so many amazing friends that we still miss more than my heart can take sometimes.  But the flip-side is I get to see my mom and dad so much easier and quicker.  Juggling family has left me feeling like I'm not giving enough, but I do what I can.

My mom has progressed quite rapidly since that time, but there are many blessings too.  She may not completely be who she once was, however she is still a very sweet, kind, compassionate person and I am so thankful!!  She has bad days, for sure.  It's not an easy road as I watch my dad continue to care for her at home, but they've found a routine and it's working for now.

June 2016 they celebrated 62 years!

By early 2016 we'd made the decision to stay in Texas.  We couldn't live in Texas and stay on with our organization.  As timing would have it many changes were going on within the organization as well.  God really blessed us with the timing of it all.  The organization was offering a package for families that felt led to step away.  It was perfect timing, really.  So we took the package.

In the meantime, Jerry began looking for a job.  We are people with a whole lot of faith and I knew God had already provided so much for us in so many ways!!  It did not keep me from experiencing a level of anxiety when you have a family of 5 to provide for and no job prospects!!

After some failed connections, a contract job we thought might lead into full time (and didn't), Jerry got a call from a church in Austin where he'd applied for a Marketing & Media director position.  He applied in January and when we hadn't heard anything, we just assumed it fell through.  They contacted him in April.  Once he heard from them, things flew fast and within weeks Jerry had gotten the job at Gateway Church in Austin, TX.

God was so good!  We didn't go without a paycheck at all!

Austin was a little further than I wanted to be from my parents.  The fact that it was only 2.5 hours by car as opposed to 10+ hours on a plane put it into perspective.

Jerry started his new job in May 2016.  We lived apart with lots of driving back and forth for about 6 weeks.  Crazy times!!

We decided to jump right in to buying a house and we closed on July 1, 2016.  Crazy to think that at our age we are buying our first house!

We're coming up on 1 year in Austin.  I have a slew of content I can share about the readjustment phases I personally have gone through in that time.  after 17 years of living in Europe, jumping back into 24/7 American life has not been an easy one for me.  It's a process and I'm getting there, but I know I will never fit the American mold.  Honestly, I am thankful for that!!  I thought being an expat was easy.  Wow, have I been enlightened and underestimated the repatriation process!  I knew it was going to be difficult.  I just don't think I was quite prepared for it!

So here we are! Navigating our way through this new journey one day at a time!!

01 May 2017

Hello Monday, Hello Blog

Hello Monday.  

Hello neglected space.

Is anybody watching my little spot anymore?

It's been much too long. Two years!

 A crazy, upside down, high and low two years.

Parent's health, husband contracting a parasite, location change, kid's school changes, 

going from an expat to a repat, readjusting to being an American, grieving changes, excited about 

changes and so much in between.

I've thought about this space from time to time.  

Even more so recently.

So I thought it was time to visit.

I'm not sure how I'm going to fill this space.

Some subtle changes are coming our way soon, maybe I'll blog about those!

If' you're still hanging around here, thanks for not giving up on me and my blogging adventures!

Happy Monday!

13 July 2015

Cornwall with Parkdean Holidays

Cornwall has been on my list of places to see since, at least, last summer.  Our plan was to head there this September.  To our surprise we were contacted to experience a 3 night weekend stay at Parkdean Holiday.  One of the locations was Mullion, Cornwall.  We just couldn't pass up this great opportunity!

If you're not familiar with Parkdean, it is a caravan holiday park.  Mullion is located in West Cornwall situated on the Lizard Peninsula.

Our caravan was 3 beds and 2 bath with a nice sized living area in the middle.  Check out there many accommodatiom options on their site.

The kids were greeted with some goodies when we arrived in the caravan.

It doesn't just stop there though.  The park includes all kinds of activities to keep you and the kids busy!
 The play area

Crazy golf.

We were reminded how competitive our kids can be!! Ha!

It was a frustrating start for my kids, but once we gave them some pointers they got the hang of it and had fun in the end.

Amusement arcade with all kinds of games.

Our addiction......the 2 pence slots!!

The indoor and outdoor heated pools are a great place to swim,

and relax.

We didn't even get to everything, like bowlingo, the pool tables and evening entertainment for the whole family.  There is lots to choose from.

 I was very pleased with the restaurant on site!!  We enjoyed an amazing steak dinner!

And Jerry just had to get this huge dessert for us to share, a banoffee sundae.  Oh my!!

There were many choices on the kid's menu and yummy desserts for them too!

Ice cream in a Lizzy cup.  Sid & Lizzy, the mascots of Parkdean.

You can also get Costa Coffee and take away foods like pizza and burgers.

The park is in close proximity to several sites that are definitely worth seeing!

Kynance Cove

 This turned out to be a favorite spot for us!

An amazing place to get a cream tea with a view!!

St Michael's Mount near Marazion.  A castle on a hilly island accessible by boat or walking if the tide is low.

We had a good time experiencing this popular choice for a British family holiday.  The accommodation was really nice, the activities and facilities were good, the staff were very friendly and the location was perfect.

If you are looking for a caravan park holiday, I highly recommend checking out Parkdean!

We were invited by Park Dean to stay  for 3 nights in one of their caravans, including a meal. All opinions are my own.

06 July 2015


I am FINALLY getting back to the blog to share the rest of our time in Stratford-upon-Avon from months ago!!  Better late than never, right?!

After our visit to Anne Hathaway's cottage, we made our way into town to visit the rest of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.  Well, not all of it, but what we could fit in a day and what was open for that time of year.  The two places we were able to see was Shakespeare's home and Hall's Croft. 

It seems quite a simple house, but for it's time in the 16th century, it was a substantial home.

Decorated beautifully in period furniture gives you a real feel of how this family lived.

A serenade.

Our last stop was Hall's Croft.  Home of Susanna Shakespeare and her husband, Dr John Hall.  A glimpse into the home of a wealthy physician.

In the garden, you can see plants and herbs used by Dr. Hall, along with this very old and beautiful tree.

Stratford-upon-Avon is a beautiful town to take a stroll and see the many old buildings and dedications to Shakespeare.


This is definitely a town worth seeing in England!

Even if you're, like me, not hugely knowledgeable on Shakespeare or a fan, there is much to enjoy in these homes and in town!

Have you visited Stratford-upon-Avon?

22 May 2015

Anne Hathaway's Cottage

While Jerry's parents were here during Christmas, we took a little road trip to see the Cotswolds.

Just outside of Stratford-upon-Avon in Shottery, Warwickshire lies the breath-taking, childhood home of Anne Hathaway, the wife of William Shakespeare.

Anne Hathaway's Cottage
Through photos I had seen of this cottage, I fell in love with this place and was determined to see it!

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust offers various ticket options to allow you to visit all or just a few of the Shakespeare's family houses and the tickets give you access for one year.  We'll definitely be going back to take advantage of that since we didn't get to see everything.

Seeing the grounds on a frosty morning added to the beauty of this place.


Thatched cottages are so appealing to me.  So quintessentially English and lovely and charming.  Anne's family cottage has been described as the most romantic in England.


The first parts of the house were build before the 15th century.

During Shakespeare's time, the house was named Newlands Farm and had more than 90 acres attached to it.

 The dining room.

Fresh bread served right by the table.

The kitchen is down the hall.

Many of the furnishings are from the family.

To keep critters and dirt from dropping on your head while you sleep, the beds have testers (canopy) over the bed.


Back then there were no ceilings.  It was open, exposing the straw.
Can you imagine insects, mouse droppings or straw falling on you in the night?!  Oh, the horror!!

This is known as Shakespeare's Courting Chair.

The grounds are just as lovely.

Next time I'll share with you some of the other homes we visited that are part of the trust.

Happy Weekend!


  Deeper - adj. 1. extending or situated relatively far down from a surface: a deep pool. It's been a long time since I've ...