Look Up!

(All nature photo credits go to Liberty Reidt)

Disappointment and sorrow sneak into our lives at times and take us by surprise.  Over the year I have had multiple conversations with dear friends that are on the cusp or in the midst of situations that are “uncomfortable” or should I say “down right painful!”  I know these times well, as I wonder in and out of these days, I whisper a prayer; “Is THIS part of your plan, the way I feel at this moment? THIS does not feel like you.”  Friends and family have shared their deep thoughts, things like: fear of the approaching empty nest, or the unknowns of if their kids are REALLY going to grow up to be profitable members of society that serve others and God, or the financial situation that seems insurmountable, or could it be that relationship that always seems to be strained, and unrepairable, or the unsettling heart wrenching decisions being made due to the terminal illness of a loved one?  It’s these melancholy thoughts or realities that keep many of us awake at night.  And it’s in these moments we must learn to take the necessary time to recognize the pain, to grieve, cry, process, and then look up. Yep, look up.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2

No, our help does not “come” from the mountains, it comes from the Lord.  Yet looking up and seeing his masterful creation reminds us of His greatness.  It puts perspective back into sight.  Living in the Idaho Mountains, gives me the opportunity to hit the trail, when I feel downcast.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God. Psalm 42:11

I am always amazed at just the simple fact of getting up and going out into nature that refocuses me on His ability in my seemingly inability to climb out of despair.  If you are downcast in spirit, look up and let His creation return praise to your heart.

 

  

I write this because I need the reminder.  I am feeling a bit melancholy today.  I have dear loved ones that are riddled with huge life changes due to illness.  And paling in comparison to that, we have hit the four year mark of work on this big lodge.  We are weary. We are very close to being done with phase two, but phase three (the basement) follows close on it’s heels.

As I shift my eyes upward I remember we have also benchmarked some important and joyful family dates this summer.  Our youngest, Liberty, is entering high school and our oldest son, Brent is newly engaged to an incredible precious Bobbi Jean.

 

And, while reveling in how quickly time passes, It dawns in me I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart for 26 years!  This in itself makes me reflect upon so many memories.

Life seems so short lately. Sometimes it’s hard to come to grip with the station we are moving into in life.  My new found prayer is, “Lord, may I live life with gusto, and really live!”  I don’t want the melancholy days to suck the morrow out of me.  I want to live and breath the beautiful that He surrounds me with.  The precious friends and family, the glistening sunset, the quietness and stillness of a summer evening.  So it is with this whispered prayer that I leave you to see what Idaho beauty Liberty has captured on camera this summer (all pictured in the text above), as well as some pics of our newest accomplishments on The Lodge.   Jared has definitely transitioned this big empty Styrofoam concrete house into something so very gorgeous.  Enjoy the views!

Landscaping still needs to be done, but other than that, the exterior is shaping up nicely.


The trellis popped up in just a couple days.


Wilson finished the rocks around the trellis.


Max stained all of the deck and trellis boards

Preparations for winter are in full swing. Wilson and Max splitting and chopping firewood. By the time of this writing we have a full wood shed!


If you look just past the frisbee golf goal, Jared got a new toy. He spends his evenings laying gravel on the driveway, burying the water tanks or anything else he can find to dig or shove around.

As for me, I have kept busy discussing with the county future business plans for the Lodge and updating and overseeing the rental of the carriage house (formerly called the loft).   The Carriage House VRBO.  And uh… lots of project planning and cleaning. 😉

Now for Jared and the boys’ indoor accomplishments, namely, the master bathroom and pool…

 

Jared completed the master bathroom in April. It turned out lovely.

 

Yet another labor of love, Jared wainscoting our master bath.


Wilson and Max removing the basketball court floor, in preparation for the pool.


The hoop is coming down.


Jared plastering the pool walls


Waterline tile is in place and the paster is going up.


Asher helped out a bit this spring when he first returned from GCU. He plans to pick up his studies in the fall at NIC.


Pool room clean up day. Libs cousins, lucie and Zoe, helped repaint the room and scrub the concrete floor.


Pool complete! Now to get dehumidifier and solor heater working.


Jump on in!

Just last week the guys began framing the remainder of the basement.  Here we go into phase III of The Wolf Lodge project!

Living Life Loved through the Little Things

Be loved. Live loved. Act loved.  What do these statements mean?  After many weather and mechanical delays, I found myself sitting at a window seat on a recent airplane ride home.  Early in the procession of delays I made the decision to “be happy and go with the flow.”  This is not my usual go to reaction. 🙂 But I made a conscious choice.  I was not supposed to have a window seat, another inconvenience, but I could not have been more blessed by it.  You see, my relationship with Jesus has been somewhat stale lately.  I’ve found myself spiritually dry.  As I gazed out over the moon lit snow and houses illuminated with life all across the landscape, I felt a deep love for those individuals holed up in each glowing home.  I was impacted. I was loved.  I was renewed in my faith.  And unbeknownst to me, tears escaped down my cheeks.  (good thing it was dark in that plane)  This, as I experienced for the first time, in a long time, was to be loved, live loved, and act loved.  I got off that plane with a new sense of resolve.  Live life loved in the little things.  As I shared this experience with a life long friend, we agreed that so many joys in life can be missed. We. Must. Stop. Rushing.  It’s in the subtleties, the decisions to “go with the flow”  or “look outside of our own pain” that we find and can give love.

As far as work on The Lodge, last blog I left you with quite a mostly finished yet unfurnished house.  Well, we have filled it with some furniture and finish carpentry and best of all, people; sweet family and friends joining in celebration here at the lodge. These are joyful times, letting this big house be used to bring joy to all.  That is The Wolf Lodge mission, to be a place of joy and peace for those who walk through it’s doors.

Wintery welcome to the Lodge

Wintery welcome to the Lodge (taken by Matt Hanford upon his December welcome)

Thanksgiving with The Wilsons, MacAninches, Hulls, and Cincoviches.

Thanksgiving with The Wilsons, McAninches, Hulls, and Cincoviches.

Brent and Bobby Jean both came at Thanksgiving for a really sweet visit.

Brent and Bobby Jean, Brent’s significant other, came at Thanksgiving for a really sweet visit.

Asher is home from Arizona and getting some brother time.

Asher is home from Arizona and getting some brother time.

Grandpa Wilson and his boys on Christmas Eve.

Grandpa Wilson and his boys on Christmas Eve.

This kiddos are so not into eating when presents await.

This kiddos are so not into eating when presents await.

Gunner and Michelle, Love.

Gunner and Michelle, Love.

Holidays are for catching up with those you don't usually get a chance to visit with.

Holidays are for catching up with those you don’t usually get a chance to visit with.

The Reidt brood on Christmas morning

The Reidt brood on Christmas morning

New Year's eve at The Lodge with the Whelhams, Moulds, Wilsons, and McAninches.

New Year’s eve at The Lodge with the Whelhams, Moulds, Wilsons, and McAninches.

Icicle anyone? Max and a friend Jacob are game.

Icicle anyone? Max and a friend Jacob are game.

The evidence of a dozen of Max's friends who make a weekly spend the night at our place.

The evidence of a dozen of Max’s friends who make a weekly spend the night at our place. I wish I had a picture of them and the many breakfasts that are peeped in my kitchen feeding teenage boys.

Now for some pics of the work we’ve been doing:

The fireplace mantle. We still need to put rocks on the wall around it, but that chunk of cedar is a beaut!

The fireplace mantle. We still need to put rocks on the wall around it, but that chunk of cedar is a beaut!

We purchased a hot tub. Once agin the genie lift proves useful in getting it up to the second story deck.

Winter is the perfect time for a hot tub. Once again the genie lift proves useful in getting it up to the second story deck.

Jared's current project...closet organization.

Jared’s current project…closet organization construction.

Yep, I actually do occasionally work on something other than paperwork, cleaning, and purchasing. :)

Yep, I actually do occasionally work on something other than paperwork, cleaning, and purchasing. 🙂

First coat of chalk paint is on.

First coat of chalk paint is on. Each piece is found in Wilson’s room, pics below.

And now for a Wolf Lodge bedroom tour…all but the master that is.

Wilson’s suite until he leaves for college in the fall…

Wilson's room

 

Wilson's room

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Auntie Linda's desk I repainted.

Auntie Linda’s desk I repainted.

Grandma Joyce's upright hope chest I refinished.

Grandma Joyce’s upright hope chest I refinished.

Asher’s suite while he is home from college over breaks…

Asher's room

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Maxwell’s suite…

Maxwell's room

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Liberty’s colorful suite…

Liberty's Turquoise room!

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Our guest suite, which we lovingly call Brent’s room…

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I have a few wall pictures and such yet to put into place, but this gives you an idea of how the lodge is decorated.  I will post a complete kitchen tour very soon.

Now go, and take the time to live loved.  🙂

 

thank·ful ˈTHaNGkfəl

Tis the season to be Thankful!  I am taking a few moments today to reflect upon the goodness of our God.  I am, like most, who busily get to the task that is at hand, but for the first day in what seems like weeks, I am purposely taking a moment to reflect and be thankful.  A week ago today, we passed our final inspection on the lodge and began moving things from the loft into the main house. Hooray!! It has been a whirlwind of a week, much of the cabinetry and organization structures are not in place and I am realizing just how “unfinished” this house is.  But regardless it has been a week of seeing a three year process come to some sort of completion.

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You can see we have places within the house where it is looking inhabited and put together, but most areas look like this…
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Vastly open and awaiting furniture, but in reality even more look like this…

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Incredibly unorganized and in disarray! This is the reality of where we are at right now.

To be honest, I have not felt thankful all week!  In fact some irritants have gotten under my skin, I won’t say it’s all hunting season’s fault. ;0 But, I really have not been all that rosy.  That is why I am taking today.  It’s my thankful day.  Silly, I know. But it works for me.  Sometimes we must set aside time and mental effort to focus.  Focus on what we want to do or be.  So I guess you can say, I am purposefully being thankful, because that is who I want to be.  Not because I especially feel thankful, even though it appears as I should.  The reality of the matter is I am deciding.  Deciding to sow a character trait into my life that I want.  So as this Thankful season rolls around again, make the decision.  Despite your circumstances, take time to align your heart and mind with who it is you want to be.

If you need a bit of nudge as I do mediate on these:

Webster defines Thankful as:

  • expressing gratitude and relief
  • please and relieved

I will be posting a DIY blog on the latest of our projects, the deck, very soon.  All  I can say is it turned out better than we imagined!

Just a peak into my next post…

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Simplicity

Live life simply. Relish loved ones. Break out in joy. Walk through this season graciously. These are statements to wind around ones heart. They must become the rhythm of our days.
If life rushes you, like me. You are often left longing for the simplicity of circumstances or thought. I think it is just that, we must live life in the moments. Drink in every moment this season, making each count.  I just found myself speaking up and telling myself to enjoy this minute, right now, though mundane, it is peaceful, and will soon be a memory.  So in case someone else hasn’t said it to you today…The season you are in is good!  No matter what emotion you are feeling right now about your position, it is good, bringing about what God wants in your life.

“This is day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24

Now for a pictorial Wolf Lodge update.  Please don’t mind the explanations of colors and such, it is for those DIYers.

 

The drop down part of the great hall and the stair treads is made of local tamarack trees milled by a family mill outside of Spokane. They are both stained SW Ranch Oak.

The drop down part of the great hall and the stair treads is made of local tamarack trees milled by a family mill outside of Spokane. They are both stained SW Ranch Oak and all white paint throughout the house is Beefy white by Rodda.

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The travertine throughout the entry way was purchased by the pallet from home depot. We purchased 6 pallets for just the downstairs. The color is a combination of classic and ivory.

The travertine throughout the entry way was purchased by the pallet from home depot. We purchased 6 pallets for the great hall’s two floors. The color is a combination of classic and ivory.

Wilson, Max and Grandpa Wilson are working on strategically placing the rocks on the exterior of the back of the house. Once complete, we can build the deck, the last of our big jobs before the final inspection. You can see them through the third story windows! Yikes!

Wilson, Max and Grandpa Wilson are working on strategically placing the rocks on the exterior of the back of the house. Once complete, we can build the deck, the last of our big jobs before the final inspection. You can see them through the third story windows! Yikes!

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Tamarack treads, oak hand rail, fir door, wall color is Revere Pewter half cut.

Tamarack treads, oak hand rail, fir door, wall color is Revere Pewter half cut.

The master suite has been softened with a touch of coronet trustworthy (color) carpet. 2000 sq ft of it that is! :0

The master suite has been softened with a touch of coronet trustworthy (color) carpet. 2000 sq ft of it that is! :0

The office/bedroom bath is almost finished. Another work of art by my bro, Dave Wilson.

The office/bedroom bath is almost finished. Another work of art by my bro, Dave Wilson.

Fir doors stained and finished by Wilson, stained SW Ranch Oak

Fir doors stained and finished by Wilson, stained SW Ranch Oak

The Chapel glass doors are installed on both the chapel and library. We purchased all our doors from Ugly Duck in spokane. They are fir and stained SW Ranch Oak.

The Chapel glass doors are installed on both the chapel and library. We purchased all our doors from Ugly Duck in Spokane.

The downstairs office/bedroom. Wilson has been a steady help since December. He is started back to college within the month, but will continue to live at home and help for one more semester.

The downstairs office/bedroom . Wilson has been a steady help since December. He is started back to college within the month, but will continue to live at home and help for one more semester.

Common upstairs area is carpeted with Mohawk carpet, Hope Mills Place.

Common upstairs area is carpeted with Mohawk carpet, Hope Mills Place.

Upstairs bedroom common area, carpeting makes all the difference in the world!

Upstairs bedroom common area, carpeting makes all the difference in the world!

Back staircase. The floors and doors throughout the house are stained Ranch Oak by Sherwin Williams.

Back staircase. The floors and doors throughout the house are stained Ranch Oak by Sherwin Williams.

Back stairway is complete

Back stairway is complete

The kitchen is coming along. The range cavity will be surrounded with stone and the white subway tile backsplash and finishing touches to the cabinetry should be complete within the month.

The kitchen is coming along. The range cavity will be surrounded with stone and the white subway tile backsplash and finishing touches to the cabinetry should be complete within the month.

The white cabinets are a Rodda's White. The sink counters are a brushed stainless steel, crafted by our next door neighbor.

The white cabinets are a Rodda’s Beefy White. The sink counters are a brushed stainless steel, crafted by our next door neighbor.

Again the island is stained Sherwin Williams Ranch Oak and the white cabinets are a Rodda's White. The granite is Viscon White.

Again the island is stained Sherwin Williams Ranch Oak and the white cabinets are a Rodda’s Beefy White. The granite is Viscon White.

The bar has a bit of finishing to do. The Viscon White granite is used again here.

The bar has a bit of finishing to do. The Viscon White granite is used again here.

Jared just about finished with the walk in refrigeration system

Jared just about finished with the walk in refrigeration system.

Both doors are installed on the refrigerator, the cooling unit works like a charm.  It got plenty of use over our big family fourth gathering. Shelving is the only thing left to do on the fridge and pantry.

Both doors are installed on the refrigerator, the cooling unit works like a charm. It got plenty of use over our big family fourth gathering. Shelving is the only thing left to do on the fridge and pantry.

The rock expanse on the back side of the house that is keeping our workers busy this month.

The rock expanse on the back side of the house that is keeping our workers busy this month.

It's a long way up there!

It’s a long way up there!

Jared has wrapped up the lighting throughout the house and is ready for the electrical inspection.  Our lights are turned on for you at all times!

Jared has wrapped up the lighting throughout the house and is ready for the electrical inspection.
Our lights are turned on for you at all times!

“This is day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24

Family

“Family is not an important thing, it’s everything.” Michael J. Fox

The word stirs up memories, a variety of emotions, good or bad. I’m an observer. Always watching. Wanting to asses a situation. Over the years I have drawn the conclusion that family is so very important to most people. It is what God intended to use to mold our thoughts of Him and His world. The familial unit was His idea of how to protect, nurture, and develop humans into valuable members of society. But more importantly, family is an expression of His love towards us. I write this knowing full well some out there have had very poor family environments that have not represented God’s heart. This stings. My prayer is you will find healing, wholeness. That…

“He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear.” Psalm 91

To others, family is like peach pie, a little runny at times, but basically sweet. My family is this. Over the years we have walked through trials of many shapes and sizes, but in the end, our faith in God has kept us firmly entwined together. I am blessed. I am thankful. Thankful for the love and connection we feel even though this Reidt family moved away from our closest and dearest. Thankful for parents and grandparents who lay down individual hurts and pursuits to see that their children are cared for and valued far above career or generational addiction.

At the end of the day, we all choose. Choose to take the beautiful relationships, along with the ugly and rise out of ashes.

“to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair” (Isaiah‬ ‭61‬:‭3‬ NIV)

I look at my dad, once a young man left to fend for himself. He and his siblings were children of alcoholic parents. I value the tender moments this year afforded me as we watched Dad go in and out of neurosurgery and conquer various procedures. His unwavering faith and selflessness mark me. He choose. He choose, as a young man, that out of the ashes and pain of his young life, that he would rise. God called, and he answered, and that I am so grateful for. His three children, their spouses, and 15 grandchildren are marked by this choice.

I did not mean this to be a blog post about my dad, it’s just that he has such a passion for Jesus, and his family. He exemplifies exactly the point I am trying to make that is, we all have a choice, that in one generation a family linage can change. I encourage you to look upon this Easter season with family in mind. Forgive. Restore broken relationships. Build stronger bonds. Celebrate those closest to you. Put aside worldly pulls and give your family your undistracted attention. Choose to rise out of ashes, or if you are fortunate enough, grow in those green pastures.

“What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.”
-Mother Theresa

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This family unit has been kicking up some dust here in Idaho. I am unsuccessfully trying to tame the white powder filtering into our living quarters each day. But along with mess comes progress.

In the past month Jared and the boys have sheet rocked, mudded, and primed the pool room.

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The rest of the house is receiving it’s final coat of mud and we should be set to texture and paint the first part of April.

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Bloom Where You Are Planted

Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. (1 Chronicles 16:10-11 NIV)

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Bloom where you’re planted. Bless where you exist. Be fully right where you are. We’ve heard it many different ways, that is, the urging to live a fullfilled life in the moment, not in the past or future. Today this was one of those thoughts that filtered through my mind. You see, I’m subbing High School English this week. Memories and thoughts of purpose, identity, and usefulness have invaded the space between my ears. It has me wrestling. Am I really called to be at home, helping building, or am I to teach? Well, it’s not either, but both plus some! The revelation unfolded as I read The Screwtape Letters with the Senior class I am subbing for. Screwtape is expressing how noise and distraction is what draws us away from God. He is rejoicing at the fact, actually. This idea reminded me that it’s not what we do, but who we are. Am I living the life before me glorifying God regardless of what I might physically be doing for the day? So often throughout our lives we don’t get to choose what we do each day. Oh ya, I’ve spent a many days trying to figure out exactly what I should do. I’ve missed the point. Westminster Chatachism #1 states “the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” How beautiful is that? Glorify, that we know and try to do, but enjoy him. Yeah…that is a sweet gift! Are you enjoying God as you glorify him? I can tell you, it doesn’t come by worrying about purpose, It comes by breathing a word of thanks and searching for God’s plan in the moment you find yourself in. You see thanks shifts our sight and allows us to see the simplicity in which we are to glorify and enjoy Him.

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September and October where did they go? Our three youngest are thriving at Genesis Prep Academy. This is also where I have been subbing. Wilson is deep into his studies at North Idaho College and working with Jared. Brent is always on our minds on the other side of Washington. We’ve gotten to visit him often but, not often enough. Jared picked up another fixer house in town and has spent most days there. I’ll be sending a DIY post on this house later next week.

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