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Do we Really Need all This “Stuff”?

We had never been to our destination and one of the things we do is follow the weather forecast for several weeks before we go and look at the weather from previous years to get a feel for what we will need to pack.

Be sure to read all the way to the end if you are a quote collector. I have a surprise for you.

Once again I want to write a bit about our recent vacation.

We had never been to our destination and one of the things we do is follow the weather forecast for several weeks before we go and look at the weather from previous years to get a feel for what we will need to pack.

It looked as though we were going to be traveling during the cool, rainy season so we purchased a couple of better umbrellas, and made sure each of us had a hooded jacket of some sort to help us stay dry if we got caught in the rain. We each spent some time deciding what “layers” we could bring so that we could easily adjust to cool and wet weather.

We live in Minnesota – the home of God’s frozen chosen – but I’m rarely cold. Some of that is because I don’t go outside if it’s really cold, unless I’m forced to, but I also am a warm person who rarely feels cold or chilled. Our minivan with the dual temperature control has saved our marriage more than once.

I first packed mostly short sleeves with a lightweight sweater or jacket, thinking I couldn’t possibly be cold, but others kept telling me it would be windy, rainy, cool, and that I needed to be prepared to be out walking and not get chilled. So slowly I began to replace one short-sleeved outfit for a long-sleeved one, a lightweight sweater for a heavier one.

By the time we left I only had two outfits that would be for warmer weather – everything else would keep me toasty on those damp, windy days outside.

We got caught in the rain once during the entire two weeks. The temperature during the day rarely got below 70 degrees and was usually in the mid-70s and sunny. When we had a breeze it was always refreshing – not cold.  Most days we left our motel without our jackets on and came home without them at 10 pm too.

And I had two outfits along to wear every day for two weeks. I did a lot of hand washing and told myself I would rarely see the same people each day so it really didn’t matter. But – there I was for two weeks, dragging my suitcase filled with cold weather clothing but only two outfits I was actually using.

Several other things unique to this trip were the lack of internet connections, no telephone, and no vehicle. We were used to having the ability to connect to the internet most of the time and talk to each other or friends whenever we wanted. Even more than that we were used to being independent and hopping into our vehicle and going wherever we wanted to go.

So how did we do?

During those days I had many opportunities to rethink my possessions and I’m sure other family members did too.

Philippians 4:12 says:
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”

I was proud of how well our young adults did with these changes. It isn’t easy to do things in ways that you have never done before, but they all were able to rise to the challenge.

One thing I did well without was mosquitoes – I enjoyed leisurely walks outdoors without covering myself in repellant or suffering with bites for days.

Now for my surprise for quote lovers like myself – a friend Kelsie Gunn, posted some of her favorite quotes and I thought you might enjoy seeing if you could glean any new ones for your list.

Finding Joy in the Journey,


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Phyllis Sather

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  • Wendy
    Posted October 19, 2010 at 5:22 PM

    Hi Phyllis,
    Just found out that you linked to Kelsey’s quotes! (I haven’t been on the internet much for this past week:) How nice of you. I enjoyed your post, especially as we’ve experienced a vast array of weather. I’ve been grateful for the “layers” we packed, and the number of short-sleeved items I included. My family gets chilled faster than I do, and I have inevitably shed my jacket to their surprise. We are enjoying the luxury of a washing machine right now. Your experience reminds me of the phrase, “The best laid plans…” You certainly were prepared, but God likes to surprise us sometimes, and I often experience that, as well, but I know that God is teaching me something when He “throws me a curve ball”! Glad for your sake that you didn’t have to use those umbrellas! Look forward to hearing more of your trip!

    • Phyllis
      Posted October 20, 2010 at 6:21 AM

      I was just praying for you last night. How interesting to have a note from you this morning. I love quotes and have a huge collection that I peruse often, so it was easy for me to enjoy Kelsey’s list.

      I’m much like you when it comes to shedding sweaters or jackets. Others will have 3-4 layers on and I’m in a short sleeved shirt. I finally closed our bedroom windows this week but we still haven’t turned on our heat. This is my time of year when I can actually get cool.

      You have another week? You return the 28th – we leave the 26th for Texas where it is still 80 degrees!

      Looking forward to catching up after we return. We need to get home on 11/2 in time to vote. We will be driving in from Kansas City, MO so we will try to get an early start.

      Blessings, Phyllis

  • Lori Lynn Lydell
    Posted October 9, 2010 at 7:27 PM

    Hi Phyllis!,
    My husb. is originally from N. MN (the Walker/Park Rapids area) and we’re hoping to move there in about two years!

    AND I wanted to tell you that I bought a pair of those fitness walkers after reading your comments about them. I got a pair of Easy Spirits at an outlet here in PA. I used them today for an all-day shopping trip with my mom. My knees feel great! Thanks for the tip.

    Lori Lynn

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