Did y’all think I was never coming back?  Were  y’all scared that I was overcome with anxiety about my trip and changed my name and moved to somewhere rural and remote like Bean Station?  OH wait, that’s where I live.  But seriously.  It is Wednesday and I leave for Nicaragua in FIVE DAYS.  Here’s what I have packed so far:  nail polish and dishcloths.  I’m nothing, if not prepared.  In my defense, I have a bunch more stuff laid out in my bedroom beside the suitcase, ready to pack, including, but not limited to a snazzy pair of closed toe shoes.  I went with Keen sandals and some Dansko clog-ish type sandals.  My girls said I looked weird yesterday when I wore them for practice.  I look like I’m trying too hard.  Flip flops makes sense in the summer but something about closed toe shoes makes you look twice and wonder, why?  Couldn’t you just wear some flip flops like normal folk? (Get used to the nervous chatter because apparently, it’s here to stay.)

I get crazy when I travel and the nervous energy combined with the irrational fears makes me do things like rally the troops at 4 p yesterday to clean out the garage.  In other words, one flew over the cuckoo’s nest.  To continue my streak, I’m thinking about painting Emme’s new room before I leave.  Because that makes perfect sense when you’re to-do list is so long, it makes you wanna dry heave. I  try to leave my affairs in order when I travel so naturally, I’ve been stressing over where I should be buried,  what casseroles to bake for the family, and who to leave in charge of my bust collection should I perish.   These are things normal people think about, right?  Zip it.  I like living with the illusion that I’m not the slightest bit cooky? kooky? cookie?  (Carol points out it’s kooky! Thank you dear!)

To make matters worse, my computer’s been on the blink.  Turns out, I need a new battery, which has resulted in two trips to Knoxville this week.  A computer is sort of necessary when one is to travel with Compassion to BLOG.  Speaking of Compassion, I’m so honored to be going on this trip.  We had a twitter party last night at 10pm, which means I could very well have dreamed up the whole thing, because I’m anything but a night owl and 11p feels like the middle of the night to me.   But for some reason, it helped to calm some of my fears.  Christy and I both were lamenting how late it was and how we grannies can’t be staying up til 11 pm for some such activities.  So then, Shaun called her Meemaw and then she called him Sonny, and that was it for me.  For some reason, traveling with Meemaw and Sonny doesn’t seem quite as daunting.  In fact, it sounds like a blast.  I can do this.  Right?

And then there’s the wee ones.  I’m on the verge of tears pretty much 24/7 but when I think of the little ones we’re gonna meet, my heart beats out of my chest because here’s the thing;  I’m not so much nervous about all the logistics of the trip, even though that’s what I’m obsessing about right now.  What I’m worried about is the wrecking ball that’s about to crash through my heart.  And that’s where you come in.  I’d be so honored if you’d pray for us?  You are the best internets a girl could ask for!

Let’s pray Psalm 37 together:

Trust in the Lord, and do good;

dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.

4 Delight yourself in the Lord,

and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;

trust in him, and he will act.

6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light,

and your justice as the noonday.

7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him.

(I need to be reminded that it’s He who will act!)


Okay, more minutiae. Because I know you’re thrilled about the rambling.

1.  I can’t decide if I should bring my big camera.  I think I’ll regret it if I don’t.  I’ve downloaded some cool iphone photography apps in the last few weeks, including Afterlight and Snapseed and VSCOcam and Camera Plus.  What are your faves?  Would you bring your big camera?  (There will be two photographers that travel with us—which is why I would consider not bringing it.)

2.  Have you downloaded any Shake! Shake! Shake! from Bronze Radio Return?  Great music. Their previous album is awesome, too, Old Time Speaker.

Love Stone’s Throw Away and Sell it To Me and Sticks and Stones and Shake, Shake, Shake!

3.  I have the ESV Bible on my phone, along with the PrayNow app.  I LOVE them both.  The PrayNow app has an Psalm for each day and an OT and NT reading, along with a prayer of the day and a writing from a church father.  It goes along with the church year calendar and has been my favorite devotional for the last 2-3 years.  You should seriously consider buying it.   I’m so glad I have it and don’t  need to carry a Bible or a devotional book, especially when I’m always over the weigh limit with my luggage.

4.  The Civil Wars’ new album will be out in August but they’ve released one song from it.  So good.

5.  I can’t decide what books to bring with me.  I’ll probably bring Chesterton’s Orthodoxy and Lewis’ That Hideous Strength (Space Trilogy, Book 3), two of my favorite books.  Maybe Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Freewhich I haven’t read yet.

6.  I’m eating a lot of citrus and taking supplements and using essential oils,  in an all out war against all possible illness.  I’m vulnerable to any and all Appalachian medicine/voodoo/old wive’s tales.  Whatever you tell me to do, I’m liable to do it.  I don’t want to get sick.

7.  I’m praying to literally take you on this trip with me.  I’ll be writing everyday, about what we see and feel.  I’ll be writing about His little ones and their poverty and need.  I’ll be writing about how He is their only hope and how YOU can help bring Him to them.  If you’re ready to learn more and possibly sponsor a child, visit my Compassion link and if you decide to sponsor, you’ll get a free copy of my ebook.

Love y’all!  Thank you for taking this journey with me!  (I think it’s only fair that you wear closed toe shoes in my honor!)

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63 comments on “Sonny and Meemaw and other ramblings”

  1. Praying for safe travels and Gods abundant love you are about to share. I’m excited to be on this journey with you. ( not sure about the shoes) Does my tennis shoes at work count ? Lol

  2. Edie, I had all those same apprehensions before leaving for Nicaragua last year. And you are right, a wrecking ball is coming! But I was so amazed at how I was the one ministered to. I was just a mess. I am praying for you and your fellow traveling companions. On the shoe front, wear the closed toe ones. I wore my Keens everyday and a ball cap. I have very thick curly hair and I looked like Chaka Khan without a hat! I am so jealous for you and I cannot wait to hear about it. Another recommendation: Nicaragua has the most delectable coffee ice cream. Get some. It too will change your life. What city will you be in?

  3. I had a patient tell me that she hasn’t had “the pneumonia” since starting Vitamin D supplementation (1000IU twice daily)- now she was elderly and we’re in the heart of Appalachia, but it’s worth a try?!
    And my toddler, Molly, and I pray nightly- we’ll be sure to add you and those sweet children!
    Enjoy the gift of this journey!

  4. Prayed today and will continue to do so for you, your colleagues, and all you will meet on your trip. No doubt God is going to do something spectacular in your life and the lives of those you meet and minister to while in Nicaragua!

  5. Hey Edie, I’m excited for you for your trip! And I appreciate that you have a way of writing about the details of getting ready for a trip in such a way that I find myself laughing as I read along 🙂 Also, I wanted you to know that simply reading that Psalm truly blessed me this morning. We are about to move to CA (my family’s in VA), and I really don’t want to go. IN fact, I hate to say it, but there is very little that I’m looking forward to about my life in the immediate future! Anyway, I was encouraged to read the simple words of Psalm 37 that remind me to trust in the Lord and be still before Him. I hope you have a wonderful trip!

  6. Oh how wonderful! You are going to be just fine. I can’t wait to read about the trip. I wish I could go. Maybe next year. I would love to go to El Salvador and meet Simon, our sponsor child. You have spurred me to write him now. I will pray and think of you when I’m wearing my running shoes. 😉 Love and blessings!


    The Pray Now App is my favorite app EVER. Such a wonderful resource to have right at your fingertips!!!!

  8. Oh goodness. I’m gonna need a fresh roll of toilet paper (hillbilly Kleenex) by my computer for your upcoming posts since you’re going to be blogging about what you’re feeling on this trip. 😉 I am and will be praying for you!

    • oh, honey child, me too.
      and i’ve long thought of investing in a few good handkerchiefs.
      or making some? sounds like a great DIY project.
      see, how easily i wonder off to a different subject?
      should i really be traveling out of the country?
      don’t answer that.

  9. I will certainly pray for you every day of your journey. I just know this trip will be a life changer for you and I am so anxious to read each day about what is happening. Know is your heart you have many praying for you . . . God’s blessing and safe travels.

  10. It’s so close! I prayed for you. I will wait to read all your updates from the field. So exciting.

    I read the book about our friend, Joy, that her sister wrote called “His Life for Mine: A Missionary’s Journey”. I cried buckets over her journal entries. That girl’s heart for the nations was so big. Her life verse was
    James 1:27
    “Pure and undefiled religion before God our Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself unspotted by the world.”

    You’re on your way to that adventure. Bless you, friend.

  11. Praying for you and so looking forward to reading about your journey! As for footwear, I have bump-toe walking sandals. They’re “Rugged Outback” brand from Payless. Not exactly the epitome of fashion, but definitely comfortable and practical for lots of walking — AND [most importantly] they allow air around my feet. I’m a hot-footed woman from way back.

  12. Praying for you and your fellow team members! Can’t wait o read more about this journey you aree about to embark upon! I know that it will be heart changing! Have the best of times and know that God is walking beside you! (Although, my guess is He isn’t wearing close toe shoes!)

  13. Edie, you will be absolutely fine on your trip. Don’t worry too much about the books – I doubt you will have time to read them. And who cares if your shoes are a little dorky, sometimes sensible is the way to go.

    Have an excellent trip. Take it all in and enjoy the experience. Seeing different cultures and countries is so rewarding.

  14. My NC grandma would say “go into the woods and get yore self some yaller root to take. It cures everything.” I don’t know what that is, but I helped her find it when I was little and it did cure a lot of things! I sent dishcloths Monday..hope they arrive in time to make the trip. Prayers for you while you are away. You’ll be fine.

  15. You need Grapefruit Seed Extract. It’s a strong natural antibiotic that leaves the good bacteria alone. You can get it at a health food store or online. And it’s AWESOME!

  16. Edie, I will pray for you and look forward to your posts. And even though you know the wrecking ball is coming, I bet it hits you in ways you could never have predicted. As for the camera, ask one of your gazillion bloggy friends who’ve already gone on a Compassion trip. And I would ditch the books. Can’t imagine you’ll have time to read. And please don’t paint before you leave. Please.

    I feel your pain. Anytime I go anywhere I’m so worked up in the preparation that I don’t want to go by the time it arrives.

  17. Dear Edie. I prayed at your suggestion and I have been praying for you. I will continue to pray for you too. I am excited for you. It sounds like you are ready! I wear danskins at work and they do look funny but your feet are protected. It sounds like you were ADHD writing that blog….or over the moon excited!!! You will be a blessing and I feel you will be blessed. Like only He can!! Xxxooo!

  18. I’m sitting at my desk holding my very fussy three-month old reading blogs instead of wrapping things up so I can go home and pack. Why? Because I’m leaving in the morning to chaperone five teenagers on a pilgrimage in Quebec (I’m in KY-this is not a short jot). Thank you for putting all my insane thoughts into words and for reminding me of commitment–not just my own commitment to these kids (who I’ve taught every Sunsay for three years), but also God’s commitment to us. So true! Pray for us (me, my group, my husband and the village of volunteers who will keep things as normal as possible for our dear baby)! I’ll be praying for you and look forward to reading all about your amazing trip!!

  19. Praying for you! Always! Yes, take the camera because I have a feeling you would feel a bit lost without it. Do Converse count as closed toed shoes, if so then I am with you! I hope that you are able to share the gifts that you bring to so many of us with the people of Nicaragua. I also hope you get as much from the trip as you are able to give. It is a great chance to reflect and write! Write Write Write!!! Much love to you.

  20. Oh my goodness! I can’t wait to tell my young adult children about your pre-trip activities! I always send a reminder to them about my old obscure life insurance policy, about what is where and etc., etc., etc.,! They always tease me! Good to know I”m not the only one who ‘prepares’!

  21. I am so excited to read about your journey with Compassion and see it on instagram:0)!! You have an amazing gift and I feel so lucky to get to have a glimpse into it.. Your words and thoughts are mine, getting on a plane with my Mom and 10 year old daughter tomorrow morning going to NYC!! I love the camera apps, thanks for those and the Civil Wars new song, I’ll be listening to that often!! You Rock!!

  22. Wow we are both going on similar adventures this summer. I’m going to Guatemala to an orphanage and am so nervous to meet all the precious orphans that I know it will break my heart to not bring them all home and give them loving homes! I’ll pray for you and can’t wait to read about your experience.

  23. PRAYING HARD for you Edie, as I know this trip will tug on your heart like never before. I know God has mighty plans for you and the rest of the crew while you are on this trip and I look forward to hearing about it as His plan unfolds.
    This post had me spitting out my coffee, I was laughing so hard. I feel so scattered at times, like my mind is a jigsaw puzzle and I can’t put the pieces together. It was nice to know I’m not alone.
    Now I want the PrayNow app and the Civil Wars new album.

  24. Green Smoothies!!! My immune system has been so much stronger since taking them. Maybe take 4 thieves with you as well. (I don’t have a lot of experience with that one, but it is supposed to be great for fighting illness)
    Psalm 37 is absolutely beautiful!
    I am crazy too, I almost always do some major organizing before a trip and the house has to be spotless.
    May your trip be filled with His presence and compassion. Bless you!

  25. I obsess over things like that before I travel… me crazy ~ don’t care! Lol

    Get yourself some probiotics ~ these will give you a fighting chance if you pick up a tummy bug!

    Excited for you!

  26. I obsess over things like that before I travel… me crazy ~ don’t care! Lol

    Get yourself some probiotics ~ these will give you a fighting chance if you pick up a tummy bug! Start them before you leave…..

    Excited for you!

  27. Praying for you and for Glory on your wonderful journey. So excited for your big adventure!

    Wearing my periwinkle blue Keens in your honor this afternoon. 🙂 {Though they do make my feet sweat a little…teeheehee}.

  28. Prayers for you and your family sweet Ms. Edie! And the BEST medicine you can take to ward off sickness is SLEEP and rest 😉 as a momma of six sweet ones I know! I suppose when I’m out in my yard pokin’ around I can wear my tennis shoes for ya instead of my beloved flip flops! 😉 But the second you come back it’s back to flip flops !!! Oh….and DON’T paint the room yet. It’ll wear you out too much making you MORE likely to catch some little bug, K?

    • It’s SO true, the sleep thing. I’ve been sleeping well so hopefully I’m prepared! And tennis shoes in the garden? You do love me. And I love ya right back!
      I gave up on the room thing. You wise, wise friends.

  29. I am so excited to follow you and Traci on this journey. I know there will be lots of tears, but I am expecting lots of joy from your visit too. God bless each of you and travel safe.

  30. I almost always wear closed toe shoes in the summer. Nothing looks more chic with a pair of shorts or a little skirt than ballet flats, n’est-ce pas?

    Anyway, I wouldn’t bring the camera. We can make do with your iPhone shots, and you don’t need any extra weight or valuables, or the hassle.

    And regarding the illness – and we all know you’re most concerned about stomach issues here – Martha Stewart said on her show once that she always finds and eats the local equivalent of yogurt and has never had a problem.

    I’m going on a mission trip to Gulfport in 11 days and my local equivalent of yogurt is… Dannon… still, it works!

    • I’m taking lots of probiotics so I’m praying for an iron stomach!!
      Will pray for your trip, too, Matilda. I love that area!
      And ballet flats? Adorable but can’t do them. I need more support and heel lift. I have high maintenance feet.

  31. Stressing over where you should be buried & packin’ your dish cloths made me laugh–I see myself doing the same things before something big!
    * Yes, take the camera. The photographers have a different agenda.
    * I live in my Teva sandals–so comfy! But a simple pair of Keds would be flexible for closed toe shoes.
    *Don’t drink the water! 😉

    Take a deep breath–you are the hands & feet of God on this trip, so He will keep you in the palm of His hands.
    You’ll be on my heart & in my prayers.

  32. Oh Edie, you are actually very cooky…and I love many of your recipes! Kooky though, not so much. Your heart and head are in the right place and even your scattered thoughts are interesting and inspirational. I will be praying for you daily and will check out the Compassion sponsorship. Maybe someday I’ll do something like you are doing…until then, blessings to you and your family! Will check out that PrayNow app. I’ve read Streams in the Desert devotional daily for 2-3 years and am sad when I forget it at home while traveling (rarely do), though I can find it online to read also. God bless you.

  33. I am exactly the same kind of traveler. You’ll be great!! The memories will be worth every drop of anxiety and paint. LOL are you really gonna do that, ma’am?
    I’ll be one of many following your journey. Such a loving endeavor.
    Also? Please leave your bust collection to me. I will love it forever and promise to change colors every six months or so.

    • It’s looking like I may drop the goal of painting bedroom before trip.
      Sometimes, I surprise myself with my good judgement!!
      I know you would take good care of David.
      And the fact that you change colors often for me? So very endearing.
      Love to you and thanks for praying~

  34. Hi Edie,
    How gorgeous to see all these people who will be praying for you. And I shall be adding my prayers from down here in the southern hemisphere too. I will be praying not just for your going and being there but especially for your coming back. I have notice for at least some that the greatest trauma is in fact the return to the land and lifestyle of plenty and abundance and it is really tough. So I will pray for a good and gentle return home at the end of the adventure.
    Go well.
    Meredith x

  35. Good gracious sweetie! Just reading that plum wore me out. Seriously. 🙂

    On the camera – Sometimes I find that I can “focus” better without my camera. I tend to hide behind the camera and the experience becomes about whether or not I got “The” shot.

    Lots of hugs and prayers. Can’t wait to hear all about it.

  36. Hi Edie, ! Book suggestion: I have been reading “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandburg on my Kindle app. Big ideas for the women’s movement. I would definitely check it out!
    Safe travels. You are doing God’s work;)

  37. Oh Edie! Bless your pea-pickin’ heart! I’m totally the same way about traveling — I go from mild turbulence to choosing the songs for my funeral in no time! I have some Keens also, and I feel like a granola-poser in them, but they’re probably a good choice! Also — the Compassion bloggers never fail to WRECK. ME. In such a good way. Because you’re really like one of “us” going and doing and we get to experience a sliver of it in beautiful ways. Thanks for going. For me.
    (Also, I shared this on Instagram, but seriously, the India trip a couple of years ago resulted in my sponsoring my sweet Sruthi, and a year later, I added Breynor! And I correspond with another – Roubenson – in Haiti! What you’re doing is of inestimable value! God bless!)

  38. i didn’t get a chance to tell you but i bit the bullet and bought a nook before spain & i think you should…. it’ll lighten your load and you can bring a few books! so here’s my packing suggestion, from the new world traveler i’ve become. absolutely necessary:: photocopy of your passport to be kept on your person (leave the real one in a safe, if available); your BIG GIRL CAMERA! (hello?! you even needed to ask??); your laptop w international electrical converter; your cell phone carrier’s international number, not in your phone, ya know, in case you get pic-pocketed; your toothbrush (in your carry-on); clean underwear (in your carryon); lip gloss, chapstick, if you’re in a pinch. optionals:: clothes, running sneakers, bra. (may the bra always be optional). 😉 also, to take along? the love and prayers of your family and friends who can’t wait to hear all about it. safe journey, my friend. xo

  39. So excited for you! We just got back from a medical/dental mission trip to El Salvador. I’m sure Compassion gave you an obvious pack list (malaria meds, passport, antibiotics, etc) but I’ve also learned to pack some other comfort things!
    I wore my keens as well and crocs/plastic clogs are great because you can just wash and dry them off. No gym shoes! Yes, take your essential oils–lemon saved my tummy, peppermint and lavender masked smells, peppermint helped with nausea and long, windy bus rides that could have sent us over a cliff if they were off by 2 inches. Other stuff: flashlight or headlamp, hair dryer, snacks like jerky or granola bars packed with protein, dried nuts or fruits or anything that travels well, travel pillow, hand gel/wet ones/baby wipes, ear plugs, eye mask, rain poncho, lots of plastic bags to put wet stuff or other misc stuff.

    Mainly, prepare your heart for what you will see. It will be amazing and you will never be the same! Latin americans are very affectionate people…get ready to HUG, kiss and touch a lot! Blessings!

  40. Wish I could go with you! Even more, I wish I could go see my own Compassion kiddos. Fabien is 20 now. He’ll soon graduate and then I guess he won’t be mine anymore. Henry is a teenager, so he’s growing fast too. God has always provided enough to care for them and me, but I’ve never had the extra to be able to go meet them. Cherish this time for me and you!

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