Moving on…

I haven’t posted anything here for a few months and, because we moved from Elliot Lake to St Marys over two months ago, I have decided to retire Two weeks from everywhere. The title speaks more of life in Elliot Lake than it does of being in St Marys. We had a (mostly) great fourteen years in Elliot Lake and it will always be special to us in its own way, especially as that was where our son was born. However, in comparison, being in St Marys seems more like being two minutes from everywhere. Even though it is smaller than Elliot Lake it now seems like we are two minutes from everywhere – twenty minutes from Stratford, thirty minutes from London, just over an hour from the US border, and just under two hours from Toronto.

With all of this in mind, I have started another blog, Roads go ever ever on, which will be more of a reflection of life in St Marys. It’s a work in progress and it will probably undergo a few changes in the next little while. Thanks for following this blog and I hope to see you at the new one. I’ll leave this one up, but this will be the last post here.


Moving on…


Today we officially found out that after fourteen years of ministry in Elliot Lake we are moving on to new opportunities in Southern Ontario. On June 26 we will take up our new appointment at St. Mary’s Community Church.

Obviously, after having been here for such a long time, there are some mixed feelings about moving on. Having said that, the timing is right and we are very excited at the prospect of a new challenge in a new community (new to us anyway). We don’t know very much about St. Mary’s, but I’m sure we’ll find out a lot about it in the next few weeks.

There have been a lot of good times here in Elliot Lake, as well as some challenging ones. Our son was born here and we’ve watched our children grow up to be teenagers.There was also the excitement of opening our new building downtown in May 2009 and the fresh opportunities that brought. The biggest challenges for us have come in the past three years, especially with the aftermath of the mall collapse in June 2012. Some of these challenges have been draining and we believe that things will benefit from the fresh perspective that our successors will be able to bring to the community.

Over the past few months there have been some unfounded rumours about us leaving and the Army being closed down here. These have mainly been by people who don’t have a great understanding of how things work in our organization. As a lot of what was being said was second or third-hand gossip it was very difficult to deal with. The truth is that things will continue to operate after we leave here. There are no plans to close anything down and, in fact, the new people may see some different opportunities to expand upon some of the foundations that are already here.

The next few weeks will be busy, as we work through fourteen years of accumulation and pack up our belongings. The worst part may be packing up all the books we have gathered. I did cull a few in the past few months, but I find it really difficult to part with them.

I’ll post some updates as things progress, or if we find out more that we can share about St. Mary’s. Until then, if it is your thing, a few prayers for a smooth transition would be really helpful.

Booking Through Thursday – Moving (July 25)

btt2This week Booking Through Thursday poses the following questions:

My best friend is moving across country, heading back to the East Coast for the first time after years of living in California, and one of the things she’s lamented was the whole packing-the-books thing. Having moved a few years ago myself (whittling down my 3000-volume library to 2000-volumes and still ending up with something like 50 boxes of books), I sympathize.

So … the question is–what kind of moving experiences have you had with your books? (Or, just in general if you’ve got good Moving Day stories–and who doesn’t?) Did having to pack and move your books cause any changes in your book-collecting habits? Make you wish you had everything on an e-reader? Feel free to discuss! (grin)

I dread having to move house. We moved into our present house three years ago and it was just across town. I think between us we had over 50 boxes of books alone. In that time I have sorted through them and cleared out about 300 books, but I think that I probably replaced most of those already.

The worst move for us was moving from Scotland to Canada almost 20 years ago. I had to give away or sell most of my books. I was able to ship some, but it made more sense to only keep ones that were special. I still have some at my parents’ house in Scotland that I may bring over eventually. In the time here, though, I’ve managed to build up a decent library again.

I’ve never wished that I had all my books on an e-reader, though. Handy as it would be, there’s something satisfying about looking at our bookshelves and thinking about the stories behind each of the books sitting there.

Getting set for year 11!

I probably should have posted this on Friday, but it slipped my mind. The list of moves for Canada/Bermuda for the SA were out Friday. As expected, we weren’t on the list. So we look forward to our eleventh year of ministry in the fine community of Elliot Lake. It’s a great place to be and we still have lots to be getting on with.

It’s been a while!

Well, it’s over a month since I wrote anything here, so I figured it was time to share some thoughts and happenings. We were in the UK for just over 2 weeks in August catching up with Pamela’s family. Then the week we arrived back in Elliot Lake we moved house, so there’s been little time to stop and write here.

The holiday was great and came at a time when we really needed it. Pamela’s mum hasn’t been too well these past few years so it was important for us to spend some time with her. It was great, too, catching up with one of Pamela’s sisters and her two brothers, as well as other members of her extended family. Our kids had fun meeting family members they were either too young to remember or hadn’t met before. We also managed to get out and see some of the sights of London and Kent (check my flickr account at the right for some of the pictures).


Another highlight for me was to spend a day in Oxted with Johnny Laird, a friend of min whom I had never had the chance to meet in person before. He’s a great guy and, if you don’t already you should follow him on Twitter (@JohnnyLaird) or check out his site here.

Johnny Laird and some other guy

Once we got back we only had a few days to finish off packing and move into a different house in town. For the last nine years we have lived in a house with mold problems. Due to the nature of our work and the system we serve under, it took that long for someone to take the problem seriously enough. The less I say about that the better now for all concerned, but suffice to say, it wasn’t by our choice that we lived in that house for so long.

There were a few problems with unfinished contract work prior to moving in, but it eventually got done, which was good because my parents arrived last week for their annual visit. So we’re enjoying getting to spend time with them just now, especially the kids who enjoy being spoiled by their grandparents.

We still have a few boxes to unpack, but the place is feeling more like home now and it’s been a good move. The back yard needs a bit of work, but we’ll do what we can for this year and concentrate more on getting it where we’d like to be next year. It’s a quieter neighbourhood and I think that we’ll be able to enjoy down-time there more than our previous digs.

Our new digs

Anyway, I’m supposed to be working on an essay today that is due tomorrow, so that’s all for now. Hopefully I won’t leave it so long next time, but I’m not making any promises!

Vacation Time

After a few hectic weeks of packing up our house and getting everything up to date in the office, we are now finally on holiday. After our weekly gathering at Hope yesterday we packed up our van and headed south to Toronto. We’re hoping to just relax for a couple of days before catching our flight to the UK tomorrow evening.

I’m not sure how much I’ll manage to update in the next few weeks. It’ll depend on how much internet access I have for the next few weeks. It would be great to meet up with any friends who may be in the Bromley area and I’ll do what I can to make that possible. E-mail me or leave a comment if you think this might be possible. Also looking forward to meeting up with some of Pamela’s family for the first time in quite a few years.

We haven’t got a great deal planned for the next couple of weeks and are looking forward to a change of scenery, as well as some rest and relaxation. We move house three days after we return, so the rest will probably help us immensely.

Running out of time!

I haven’t managed much posts lately due to us being busy packing up house for our move next month. Although we don’t move until 31 August, we are away for 3 weeks from 8-29 August. That means we only really have less than 3 weeks to get ready for the move. Thankfully we’re only moving less than 5 minutes across town. This is our first move in 9 years, so we’re kind of out of practice. It’s amazing how much you can accumulate in such a short time. We’ve already made a few trips to the Thrift Store and will probably make a few more yet.

So, please forgive me for the lack of updates. Once we get back from our holidays and get settled in the new place I hope to become more regular with my postings. We’ll have to see how that works out.Anyways, I’d better get a couple more boxes packed before bedtime!