β€˜β€˜Tis Grace That Brought Me Safe Thus Far”

We are home!

The last leg of our journey flew past, South Dakota and Mt Rushmore gazed at us expressionless on our way past.

The cropland in the Midwest reminded me once again what a microscopic drop-in-the-bucket I play in the National Ag Game. We saw thousands of acres of soybeans and corn, and were amazed by the number of acres that were either too wet or too dry. Farming this year is not for the faint of heart!

We watched the sunset over the roaring Missouri River apparently they had opened up a spillway upstream and the waters were rolling! Any guess which song Em found for this one?

The last day we traveled hard and fast- 1030 miles in less than 16 hours. Our entire route is in pink.

After we told our new Lancaster friends farewell, and Em and I set our faces for Home, we hashed and rehashed the highlights.

What a privilege and adventure to explore this beautiful land. So thankful for God’s grace and provision along the way!

’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,

And grace will lead me home.

Thanks for all the support

See you down the trail,



If you’re interested in our #americabysong project, it’s posted here πŸ™‚

Then Sings My Soul

“Natural rolling hills, and mountain backdrops stir the soul and make each day impossible to compare”

This quote on the wall of our motel in Jackson, WY perfectly sums up our last few days of travel. So much beauty!!

The visit to Jackson is always a favorite of mine. The Bar J supper was delicious. The Tetons were outstanding with a rainbow nestled among its peaks. Em (who may have been up half the night suffering from the effects of an energy drink she drank too late in the day πŸ˜…) figured out where to find the famous barn. I tried to imagine how it would be to be one of the 33 families who lived beneath the shadow of the Tetons for years. Washing dishes with that view would’ve been the best. πŸ’ž

Montana sure is beautiful in the summertime. We passed a Bazillion bales of hay, enjoyed the sunset, and the immense variety of wildflowers.

Glacier was beautiful. We spent some time beside Lake McDonald, hiked down to a waterfalls. [*insert- Em’s knee hung in there like a champ, and I’m so thankful she’s been given the opportunity to experience things like this again! She iced it in the frigid waters we found at the falls πŸ˜…]

Can you spy my hiking partner? 🀩

Our last stop in Montana was a guided tour of a Hutterite colony. Ms. Rita took us all around, and I learned a lot. The cleanliness of the the main kitchen was impressive. Their garden was huge, with rows of carrots stretching on into the horizon. We all laughed at the fact that our group consisted of Amish, Mennonite, and Hutterite- all different types of Anabaptists. I love culture studies, and I will admit to leaving with more questions than I came with.

O Lord, my God, when I in awesome wonder

Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made

I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder

Thy power throughout the universe displayed

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee

How great Thou art, how great Thou art

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee

How great Thou art, how great Thou art

Praise to the One created all this beauty, and allows me to experience it!

“Auf wiedersehen” as they say, or “see ya later” where I come from πŸ™‚

See ya down the trail,


Bonus Pic:

Winner of the Unofficial Most Appropriate Mural Contest we’ve been having 😍

Colorado: Land Of So Much

Every time I blog about CO, it ends up being a form of a love letter. I really do love this state.

So much history:

A quick stop at Mesa Verde taught me a few more details about the people who sought shelter here 700 years ago.

The Durango/ Silverton Narrow Gauge Rail brought history back to life for the 6 ladies traveling with us. (Em and I enjoyed a free day)

So much variety in the view:

Wolf Creek Pass is one of my favorites. So breathtakingly beautiful.

The Great Sand Dunes are another marvel: the way the wind is constantly changing, sculpting the face of the sands; the sheer size of these sand mountains…

The Black Canyon- the impressive walls dropping 2,000 feet to the river below.

The views along the Million Dollar Highway. We are frustrated with the lack of ability to communicate the grandeur before us… so we just say “wow” over and over and over…

Quote Of The Day: Just think, if I had enough faith, I could order these mountains to move back to Lancaster Co with me.

So much agriculture:

We love watching the farmland out the van window. The San Luis Valley impressed us with it’s brilliant canola, beehives, and various colors of blooming potato fields.

So much culture:

We took in a rodeo in Durango. You know that feeling when you can’t bear to watch, yet hate to miss anything? πŸ˜…

Our favorite was the mutton bustin’. Emily took these pics and I love the progression. Going, Going, Gone.

So much appreciation:

All over Durango there were “thank yous” to the heroes who saved the town. It was incredible to see how close the charred trees were to the backs of houses, yet no structures were lost!

So much hospitality: (not pictured)

We landed in Delta, and are catching our breath before moving on. As always, the Kennells are making our stay so comfortable. Bless y’all for providing an oasis for weary travelers!

Yes Colorado, you are so much.

Thank you for guiding our hearts in worship of the Creator. It’s wonderful to be here again.

“Auf wiedersehen” as they say. “See you later” from where I come from.

See you down the trail,


Brighten the Corner Where You Are

To our friends scattered to and fro:

To those of you who follow me on Instagram, or follow Emily on Snapchat-this is not new news. In fact-I hope we aren’t being super annoying πŸ™ˆ But we have challenged ourselves to #americabysong which means that there have been quite a few multiple second clips of us sailing along listening to music that fits the progress of our journey: Country Roads take me home (West Virginia); God bless Texas; Amarillo Sky; Highway 40 blues, etc. Google and Apple Music have been our best friends for this project, along with the fact that several of these ladies are walking music libraries… anyhow we’ve been highly entertained for miles. Thanks for your patience on our project πŸ˜…

Yesterday morning we stopped at Four Corners Monument and the song that I thought best fit the occasion went like this:

Do not wait until some deed of greatness you may do,

Do not wait to shed your light afar,

To the many duties ever near you now be true,

Brighten the corner where you are.

That seems to be the underlying theme of the last few days- little things that have been beautiful rays of sunshine in our travel.

I had never been to the Petrified Forest before. Unbelievable. I’m so curious to know the facts about this crystallized wood from a Christians scientific understanding. (Maybe somebody can help me out? Google was not much help on this one)

The biggest day brightener from this stop was found in the crevice of a petrified stump. Hannah dug it out. This purple rock is part of a Facebook group the bold words “you matter” was a cute reminder of the value of the next pair of hands that discovers the hidden treasure wherever Hannah drops it off πŸ™‚

The desert storms have been so much fun to watch. We saw countless bolts of lightning, and dodged a few raindrops. ( side note: We traveled late one night and the girls were super excitedly actually be able to see the strikes hit the ground. I missed that split second event-I was more concerned about finding an elk or a wild horse standing broadsided on the road 🀠)

We were so thankful that even though we drove thru rain-it was never raining when we wished to get out of the van and discover something:) I just love the saguaro cacti down near Phoenix.

Another day brightener has been the quest for wild life. Em wanted to see elk so badly. And this little guy charmed us all

And the wild horses along the way-make us imagine we are cowgirls. 🀠 But who am I kidding- I can’t pretend to be comfortable with equines-especially when I’m traveling with ladies who deal with horses every day.

And the final sunbeam I’d like to reference from our merry way was actually just that-the final sunbeams. We watched the sun set over the canyon and as the low light brought out the deep colors, and then the light faded from the deep walls, we worshiped. How Great is our God?

β€œAnd, Thou, Lord, in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of thy hands: They shall perish; but thou continuest:”

‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭1:10-11a

May you find multiple little bursts of sunshine in your world today.

“Auf wiedersehen” as they say. Or “see you later” where I come from.

See you down the trail,


Bonus Pic:

For years whenever something scares us- our family has described it as “that turned me into a petrified forest” we now have a visual for that πŸ™ˆ

Photo credits for a number of these pics: Emily🀠

Deep Dutch

“It’s ‘micka’ season out here in Missouri”

I sat on the backless bench and watched the house wife dutifully shooing away the bazillion flies that descended on our supper. My weary brain fuzzed over her words. Wait-what’s a micka??

Emily and I are currently in #deepdutch We left early Saturday morning, picked up 6 Lancaster County Amish ladies and flew west. This is basically what I look like after 1000 miles:

Saint Louis Arch was a madhouse. Apparently there was a fair in progress. I loved watching the children play in the ginormous sprinkler

Em and I stayed in a darling little cabin and enjoyed a leisure Sunday morning before we went to the Laura Ingalls Wilder museum. It was kinda cool to see the desk where the famous series was penned. Laura’s kitchen was custom built for her- she was 4′ 11″ and Almanzo was 5′ 4″. Also it was pretty neat to see Pa’s fiddle. I enjoyed our time there. If you ask Em if she did-you’ll get a different response 😜

The journey across Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico has gone rapidly, but we’ve enjoyed the ride!

The intense farming that happens in the these parts does my agricultural loving heart good.

We’ve enjoyed stopping occasionally to get a feel for the land we are traveling through.

The stop at “The Big Texan” did not disappoint. The food was tops, and our waitress was very gracious. When I was in my teens-I was sure that I could handle their 72 oz steak in an hour challenge. (Again Em’s opinion is differing here) but those days are gone-I settled for a 9 oz Ribeye instead.

We traveled the Musical Highway on Route 66. We didn’t tell the girls what we were doing, and I wish you could’ve heard the excitement when they figured out the rumble strip was singing lol.

And that leaves us in New Mexico ready to embark on a full day of travel.

If I could sum our #deepdutch tour up with one pic-it would be this one.

“Auf wiedersehen” as they say. Or “See you later” where I come from 🀠 πŸ™ˆ

See you down the trail,

Kendra for the whole gang

Faith the size of a wheat seed πŸŒΎ

“Be still and know that I am God.”

I love that verse. Such a good reminder to stop, chill out, and allow God to move.

And I believe that He can and does move, I say devotedly as the sun shines.

But then the clouds move in and the thunder rolls and I’m frantically trying to solve the problem.

I apologize in advance for another post on the weather-but I’m so amazed and enthralled-I just have to share πŸ™‚

Wheat is a pretty big crop for our family, and this year, we watched our fields carefully. January- bitter cold with no moisture. February- unusually warm-no moisture. March- I don’t remember. April- more cold with snow. May- rain and rain. June- rain rain rain RAIIIIIINNNNNN…

The crop looked good. And then it looked bad and then it looked decent and then it ripened and turned a color other than the typical gold we were used to.

In the midst of all this, I stood at the edge of the field and watched. I listened to the seasoned farmers around me hashing what was going on (what else can farmers do when it’s too wet to get in the fields? πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™€οΈ) I stoically manned the rain gauge to make sure it was dumped every few days so it didn’t run over. πŸš£πŸ»β€β™€οΈ I worried. I prayed a good bit and gave the crop to God-the ultimate Farmer. Then I worried that God didn’t notice His wheat was drowning.

Also adding to the drama is the fact that day after day brought us closer to the scheduled date of a trip West for a certain van driver and her younger sister (a certain grain cart operator) (stay tuned for more info) and I was completely concerned that after we pulled out, Father and Deb would be let alone. Not that they couldn’t handle it- but half the crew is half the crew.

Anyhow. I prayed and prayed and prayed.

“If you have faith the size of a wheat seed…”

Mother says God parted the waters. And I agree. But unlike the Israelites, we didn’t quite walk through on dry ground. A week ago, the sun shone and we flew for the field.

What a rodeo it was. We found wet spots we didn’t know existed and had more excitement than we bargained for.

Thanks to everyone who dropped everything to come to our aid.

We were encouraged to find the crop was not a complete loss, but that specific sinking feeling put fear into the heart of the operator.

We continued on cautiously.

And today, as the dust settles on our last field of wheat stubble, I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

The rains dodged us perfectly (sometimes only by minutes) all week-only by the grace of God.

What is the battle your faith is facing? I know in the grand scheme of things, this year’s farming challenge is only a drop in the bucket, but this is my life- what’s real to me.

I encourage you to take a step back from the battle. To breathe. And to watch God move.

Because He can. And when the time is right, He will.



Bonus Pic:

We had to get a little creative to get all the wheat off. Father’s genius idea of combining with a 4-wheeler was a life saver πŸ™‚