Bye Felicia.

At first I thought I would be saying this today, but it turns out I’m on the receiving end of this phrase. Let me go back to explain…

Before homeschool started this year Jeremy and I talked {at great length} about our options for school now that we are in Mexico. We talked about the bilingual school in Rosarito (too expensive), continuing homeschool and the boys going to a public Mexican school. Jace was happy to go with the flow and continue homeschooling. Ryan begged to go to Mexican school. Looking back I’m not actually sure why we just went ahead with homeschooling- I faintly remember phrases like “keeping them together” and “learning more Spanish first” being part of the conversation. 

Fast forward to two days ago. The first day of school for everyone in our parts. (Home) School itself was great, Ryan was rough. Day #2: Jeremy witnesses the full assault of a homeschool day gone bad in every way. Bad on my part for reacting like a wild person & bad on Ryan’s part for being less than outstanding {confrontational, mouthy and flat out rude}! Jeremy, bless his heart, was like, “I don’t know how you do this. Maybe Mexican school would be better.” I’m instantly reminded of the conversations we had before starting school. Ryan’s response, “Yes! This is what I want!!”

We went to the Bodega, sized him for a uniform and called to meet with the school Director. This morning, Jeremy, Panchita (the Open Arms Psychologist – who deals with the schools daily) and I went to the school with Ryan (in full Mexican school uniform). The smile on his face was beaming! His eyes were saying, “Bye, Felicia!” {I might or might not have sent a few memes to very close, non-judgmental friends with this exact phrase!}

Within 10 minutes, Ryan was in his class, sitting front row and smiling from ear to ear! It was surreal: there was no long list of forms to be completed, no waivers to be signed and it was basically the opposite of every school in the U.S. For example, we needed to get him a desk. Yes, a desk. A school desk, for him to sit in…because they didn’t have one. And the fact that, you know, they only speak Spanish. (Although his teacher speaks a little English and one other boy in his class speaks a lot!) He goes to school Monday through Friday (if the teacher shows up and it’s not raining…yes, seriously!) from 8am to Noon. He will ride the bus from school to the daycare in the mornings and afternoons. The school is 5 minutes from the daycare, all the friends he has at the daycare go to this school  and that’s good – for me! 

At home, we will continue reading and math instruction. Jace will have full homeschool for now. Although he did come up to the office to tell me he is considering attending the Mexivan school too. Lord, help me! 

Jace’s face says it all (he was upset all morning that Ryan left for school!

As I write this, Ryan has finished his “Mexican homework”, told anyone who will listen that he’s going to the Mexican school and asked to wear his uniform everywhere (dinner, the store, back to the daycare…every.where.) Can I be honest? I do not know if this is THE best thing for him, I don’t know if it will cause problems for him mentally or physically and I don’t know if it’s forever. I do know that I wish I had been as brave as he is for my whole life. I know that not all kids get this experience. I know that God made him {every part of him} and He has a plan for His life. 

Panchita and Ryan (ABOVE) after his first day:)

With that said, I pray every day I don’t mess it up. Can you pray with me?


I want a quesadilla. (And other emotions.)

We have been in Mexico one month and four days, but who’s counting!! We were so happy to have family and friends come down when we moved to help haul & set up everything we needed before groups started arriving. 

It’s hard to write about what this month has been like because it’s been high up and way down and crazy busy all wrapped up in a little mess of a bundle that is our family, our life in Mexico.

We have managed to get through our first Father’s Day where Jeremy wasn’t with all of the kids & his birthday (the first in many years we were not at my parents pool surrounded by friends & family.) Those two days were a blow, although no one would have picked up on it. However, I’ve been married to this man of mine for 16 years and I could tell. It was hard. It hurt. And there was nothing that could be done but to get through it. We bandaged the wound by spending these at the beach surrounded by friends (old and new), bbqing and smiling, but it wasn’t easy. So there’s that.

It isn’t all hard days, but there are hard days. Ryan had a breakdown because we had no shredded cheese for a quesadilla (full on screaming, crying breakdown), which I am almost positive had nothing to do with a quesadilla at all but rather emotions he hasn’t dealt with. Jace, poor sensitive Jace. Some days he is on His game, in his element of dolling out love, lending a hand and encouraging everyone, but other days he is a crying mess who can’t go to sleep alone. Jeremy and I are coping. With the boys and ourselves. As much as it caught me off guard, we are in transition as a couple too. I don’t know what that even really means but it feels like making a new path & a new normal…it’s a lot. So keep the prayers for our family coming. We need them. We feel them. 

The work is good. Although there is a fine line between “the work” and just life…everyday there are kids at our house for dinner, the boys are constantly playing out front with kids from the neighborhood and the daycare and the work continues long past “work hours”. Sometimes work is running errands and working on administration stuff in the office. Other times, it’s interpreting for a dental clinic and running a Scout Camp for the kids. You never know. There’s always a plan for the day but at any time (like every day) the plan changes (because it’s life) and you find yourself doing something totally different than what you planned on doing. It gets easier for my Type A personality to do this as each day goes by!  

This month collectively, we have been troop leaders, teachers, administrators, errand runners, clean up crew & go to people. Personally I have been an interpreter, cheerleader (literally I helped girls learn cheers 🙃), dance teacher aid, VBS coordinator, group host, tour guide, nurse, medical transcriptionist, food server, and chaperone. Jeremy, by my calculations has served as the head Open Arms Troop Leader for Scout Camp, activities director, Sports Coordinator, mechanic, repairman, plumber, construction worker, group host, bus driver, lifeguard and mover (of all heavy things by anyone within a two mile radius). 

So, there’s that. Want to pray for us? Please pray about Jace and Ryan’s school for this fall. I’m considering options (aka freaking out about their reading and costs of great curriculums) and pray that Jeremy and I would find our groove as a couple here. Oh! We’re only half funded. If you can throw in a prayer for that – it would be much appreciated!!!!

We are so grateful for every prayer, every dollar and every opportunity to share Jesus through our lives!!

If you want to see more of our daily life, friend me on Facebook or Instagram!

5 Things to Know About (My) Mission Family

{1.} When you ask if we are ready, we don’t know what to say. We know we are doing what God has called us to, but being “ready” is subjective. Are we emotionally ready to leave behind friends & family? No. Do we have everything packed and ready to go? No. Are we prepared to deal with the boys when they realize we have left for good and won’t be back for months? Probably not. BUT are we ready to follow what God has set before us? Absolutely! 

{2.} We have strategically asked people to help us move. Grandma and best friends will be helping us move and set up house (we have one day to unpack before summer officially starts for us!). Yes, they are willing to haul our stuff across the Mexican border and do a HGTV worthy unpack and that’s great. Most importantly though, when we pull out of our driveway we will not be alone, my kids will not be alone. They will have one of their best friends and their grandma making the trip and staying a few days with us when we get there. I’m hoping this softens the blow.
{3.} I (absolutely, for sure) might not be dealing with my emotions about the move. If I stay busy (which is very easy at this point) I don’t think about it. “It” being, leaving the home all my kids have grown up in, leaving the property I’ve spent more than half my life on, leaving my mom who has been my neighbor for 18 years, leaving a ministry that is my life’s work thus far and all the people we have served for 8 years and leaving behind friends who have loved me through it all. Be forewarned that an episode is coming. It will be tear streaked face, snot flowing and I will make it through it, but bare with me when it happens!

{4.} We have already started “working” in Mexico (even though we don’t move for two more days!) We have been scheduling groups, working with Heidi and Daniel on project plans, planning camps, new ministries and corresponding A LOT. Is it a lot of work right now as we balance saying goodbye, packing and the transition in our own ministry? Yes. But it will make our first few months easier and the transition as smooth as possible. So, if we haven’t called, messaged or text you – now you know why!

{5.} Oh, we aren’t fully funded! (I saved the best for last.) A very important part of our life as missionaries is gaining monthly support and we have had a great response of people who want to help us fulfill God’s calling on our life. Awesome! We are only half way there: basically at this point we are leaving with the faith the God will provide enough to love on! Are we surprised? No. Crazy? No. Jumping in with both feet and eyes wide open? Yes, yes, yes!!! If you want to support us (one time or monthly) please email us at We are debt free and only need living expenses!! 
Please pray for our transition physically and spiritually! We would love to actually get our things across the border without having to pay a lot in taxes, a safe trip and God’s presence through it all!

It happened.

I’m sick and I thought to myself, “I want to go home.” Apparently I have a blankie (that my grandma made) that I use when I’m sick. I don’t have that. The bed here isn’t as cozy as the one in Visalia. I don’t have hot tea, satellite TV or Pho. And I cracked. 

I was laying in bed tears streaming down my face thinking, “I want to go home.” The still, small voice said, “You are home.” Which sent me to bawling and I realized I didn’t want to actually “go” home as much as I wanted the things *from* home to be here. 

Then the text came from a friend, “How are you doing?” To which I responded with a flood of whining, pity seeking and pouting. Friend said, “You are home.” Ugh. The truth is what you get when you need it the most, I guess. But this marks the first time in 10 years I was in Mexico wishing I was in Visalia. 

I’m glad to report that with two days of antibiotics under my belt I’ve stopped sniveling and can push all those feeling (however unhealthily) to the back of my mind. Just bear in mind I’m sure there’s a day coming that I will be in the fetal position as the reality of our life hits me. Until then, cheers to busy days and my head firmly in the sand! 

As part of my new job description, I made a visit to my neighbor who is getting their roof redone by the group that’s here this week. Nine months ago she almost had a baby on Heidi’s porch! That little baby is a smiley chicken pox marked sweetie right now. (I triple washed my hands in scalding hot water after our visit because well, you know my kids haven’t had chicken pox and honestly I can’t remember clearly right now if that’s one of the vaccines they have or not!) So, there’s that.

The group is on the roof as I’m chatting with mom and dad. It sounds (and looks like…because I see sky!) they could fall through at any moment…I’m half praying Jeremy (or anyone else) doesn’t come barreling through as I’m half listening to the mom tell us how she cleans houses in the States every weekend while her husband watches the kids. They are smiling and grateful. 

I make small talk while realizing that their whole house is being suspended off the hillside by verticle two by fours and the floor below me bows under our foot steps. Really, I do care about what they are saying…her other daughter is in Kindergarten and likes school, but I’m distracted by the fact that this house is not safe. Much less warm or dry…And I’m complaining as a grown woman that I’m sick and don’t have my blanket! 

Geez, Lindzee. Get a grip and purpose to put your big girl panties on EVERY. DAMN. DAY. Because, there’s real problems to deal with. Yup, God sent me (whiney, blanket girl). Apparently He thinks I can decided who gets what help and when, not by my own accord but through maintaining a tight grip on His hand, His heart and His timing. Lord! 

Lord, let me decrease so You can increase. Let me shrink in my own eyes and in the eyes of others as you rise up in all Your glory! 

Greetings From Baja!!!

We are spending a month in Mexico! We have been here since March 17th and plan to leave back to Visalia on the 20th of April. So far it has been an adventure:

– Jeremy went to Camalu (prepping for the dedication of the second campus on April 2nd)! They are working early mornings and late nights (like painting by cell phone lights late nights!) The boys and I have been praying like crazy for him, the other workers and the event! We miss him and will be joining him tomorrow!


– I made my first “states run” (going to the US to run errands). It sounded much simpler than it turned out to be! De (Heidi’s mom) assures me that one day I will be able to do it without phoning or texting every half hour with questions! Oh, and I left he boys at the daycare while I went and with Jeremy not being anywhere close it was their first time spending the day without one of us here! They lived!! Woohoo!!


– My mom and Garrett visited for a week so we tried to do some fun things, like the beach and Garretts 18th birthday celebration. It was one of many birthdays he has spent in Mexico but harder for me now that he’s an “adult”. They left by train (I managed to get them there 6 whole minutes before the train left!)


– We had our first holiday in Mexico… Easter! We cooked a full Easter meal with one 9×12 baking dish and a toaster oven! And we had guests…Nemi & Mary (the American Missionary Interns) joined us! 

– Tomorrow the boys and I venture 3 hours south to join Jeremy and the rest of the Open Arms team at our second campus in Camalu. We dedicate the facility Saturday with the OA staff and family, community, guests and future OA kiddos! This is a huge testament to God working in His people to provide, build and serve here in Mexico!

– Our days have a rhythm we have drifted into. It’s definitely a different kind of life. Simple & lovely despite the hardships and poverty. One of the moms tried to take her life last week with her children at home. I got the job of picking them up to bring them to that care while she recovered physically and mentally. Their resilience astonishes me. They smile, laugh and go on. One of the girls told me she prayed with her mom and told her God will help her. I almost asked if she would pray for me: her faith was a light! 
– One of the boys in the daycare is harassing my boys. They have been turning the other cheek and trying to be sensitive to him acting out, but they are almost fed up. Pray for the little boy: his home life is so bad it shows through his relationships and aggression. Pray for my boys that Gods love would be bigger than their natural reactions.
– We have done everything from construction, office work, working with groups and taking trash to the dump to cleaning the dorms, painting and electrical work! And sometimes we hold sweet little babies!!!

Thank you for your prayers! With God they get us through the trying moments and days. 
Our Hope Is In Him!

Oh, me of little faith.

We did it. We jumped in. A huge step toward our move was selling our small family business. I’ll spare you the number crunching, but basically we took a loss. We still owe on the business and didn’t break even. We did however spend an evening at the kitchen table figuring out how we could sell everything we own to make up for it. 

And we figured it out. So it’s done and now we are in Mexico for a month. Right now Jeremy is in one place (Tijuana where our missionary life first began!) and I’m at Open Arms. This has not been easy. Yesterday….well, it sucked! Like went to bed with a headache, sucked! 
I woke up this morning and my first thought was, “His mercies are new every morning…THANK GOD!!” And then I got a text that said the very same thing. God really is good and cares about the fact I almost had a nervous breakdown because of keys. 

As I was drive to a place I had never been to pick up kids who barley know me for Open Arms, I was talking to the Lord about yesterday and {begging} asking for mercy for today (I was already on this morning) and realized what is happening! I have been on auto pilot. 

Everything in my life is easy to do (not situations or sometimes the circumstances) but what to do about them and the things I do in ministry every day, autopilot. I just didn’t realize it until my auto pilot no longer applied and I was steering all on my own (yesterday was a disaster people!!). I realized that I have been running on my own strength for a long time. Not out of choosing pride but out of getting caught up in the daily routine and knowing what was coming next and exactly how I would handle it. Yesterday was the end of all that.

I couldn’t do anything right on my own yesterday and I saw that my autopilot was me! That really doesn’t work out well when you are doing things you have never done, going places you have never been and have a language barrier. Did I mention I almost had a nervous breakdown?! Ya. 


Despite all that happened, it feels good…I need God. Like, really need Him. And maybe I haven’t been operating like that for a time. But the not knowing, being clueless, and flailing feels good today because I’m not on autopilot! I’m all snuggled into the arms of the Lord today and it doesn’t matter if I don’t know or I end up looking like an idiot in the process because I’m right where I need to be: in the Shadow of His wings!

I’m breathing easier, feeling better and enjoying the chaos, the unknown today! Pray for me, who knows what tomorrow will bring! The only thing I know is His mercies really are new every morning!!!


We have no idea…

Really though. It’s all coming so fast. But in this present moment we could follow up this title with: what to do.

We have a small pool business and have to sell it. Can I be honest? I really didn’t think through the logistics of such a thing. My thought process: sell it for more than we owe, live quietly (and cheaply) until June 10th & move to Mexico with no debt. 

Not so much. Reality is we are looking at an offer $4,500 short of what we need to come out even (no extra $ to live quietly on!). Why are we even considering it, you ask? Well, the flip side of the coin is being $14,000 in debt when we leave: that’s more than what it was to pay off my student loans people! No. Way. Not doing it.

Enter in hubby, wife meeting at kitchen table – calculators, note pads and high hopes. Long story short is this: either way it is a huge leap of faith. Faith that one way or another God will provide. It’s super cute to say that until you realize on paper it just doesn’t work without a miracle. But doesn’t that sound just like God?

Here we are…hoping for a miracle. How do you provide for your family in the gap of – our business sold but now we have no income and we are moving in 94 days. This is enough to give a person (ok, me!) a panic attack. As a matter of fact, when Ryan asked what we were doing Jeremy said, “I’m giving your mom a heart attack.” And it really felt like it. At one point Jeremy said, “I can’t breathe.” Adulting is scary…and complicated! 

With all that said, we are going for it. Never once has God done something in our married life that felt safe and without questions. This feeling is very familiar: sweaty hands, hearts racing and that gut feeling that you just have to let go and let it all happen. I feel like we are always jumping all in, but every time we do, it feels like the first time. And we are scared, hopeful and leaning in…

On a side note, we are available for hire. Really. And if you want to start supporting our long term mission, this is a great time!!!