Friday, June 19, 2009

An Unexpected Gift

Jamey is a full time pharmacy student, having completed his second of four years this past May. There are no summer class requirements, although there are practice hours he must complete. Once his classes were over this spring, he started working at a local pharmacy to complete this summer's hours and wrapped them up the week before Miriam was born.

For the remainder of the summer he planned on picking up work at the hospital pharmacy (as he did last summer) or at another pharmacy. As his practice hours became close to finishing, he started making contacts to set something up. The contacts were slow to respond and he began joking that maybe he would have the summer off. He mentioned this to the pharmacist who was overseeing his practice hours, a man Jamey's age with two kids very close in age to Sam and Sadie. He told Jamey to take the summer off, pointing out that he may never have a chance to do this again, especially when the kids are young.

Take the summer off? We let this stew, wondering how a family (now of five) was supposed to forgo an opportunity for work after a year with none. We weighed the pros and cons. We reviewed our finances. We prayed. Even though we knew it may be hard for some to understand our reasoning and ability to swing this, the idea really grew on us. Jamey, home for the summer? Here to help with our newborn and the kids? Here to manage the garden's weeds and help in preserving? Here to work on projects needing to be done around the house?

In a society where work is expected of most, we already feel a bit like misfits. I stay home. Jamey goes to school. No one works at our house. Opting to not pursue a few months of income seems bizarre and crazy.

But, in so many ways this makes sense. Because we in general swim against society's current- refusing to jump on many a bandwagon when it comes to possessions- we have been able to do what we've been doing- living off some savings and student loans. We don't have a cell phone plan or cable. We rarely go out to eat. We grow our own food, raise our own meat and are content to be home together instead of entertaining ourselves at the movie theater and mall. All these things save us money (and some of our spirits, I would say). This has helped us these past couple years and have made it possible for us to make the decision about Jamey's summer.

A summer at home. Together. Our values have beaten out society's expectations of us once again. We know that we are blessed to even be able to consider such a possibility. We know that many people are struggling all over the country to find work and pay bills. All more the reason we will relish this summer and the gift that it is. Pin It


  1. You are blessed! Go for it. You will never look back and regret it.

    Congratulations on the addition of little Miriam. I'm eager to hear more.

    Aunt V

  2. What an awesome "gift" you are giving your family. It's the right choice. We (as a society) put to much value on money and not on what really are investing in your future...your family. :)

  3. That is fantastic!! And you wasn't so long ago that THAT is how families lived? Farming. Tending to their own bit of land. Taking care of the home and the family. I think it sounds perfect...and quite possibly as God intended it in the first place. xo

  4. I hear you!! I often miss those nights out and little perks, then I spend the entire day with Isis and realize how rich I really am :)

  5. Lucky Ducks!! Enjoy!! :) xoxo

  6. You could have been writing this about our family(except for the growing our own food-hard to do in an apartment.) It is encouraging to know others who strive for the same quality of life that we do. It is generally a different quality of life than most around us.


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