And the Parsons are moving to…

Marian Parsonsa slice of life147 Comments

…Rochester, Minnesota!

I know!  What?!  Minnesota?  Yes, Minnesota!!

Let me back up and tell you the entire story, because it’s a good one.

First off, if you’re wondering why we’re moving, check out THIS POST and then come back here and continue reading.

Back in the fall of last year, we started counting Jeff’s credits to completion.  He is working on a Master’s Degree with the hopes of getting a full time job as an associate pastor in a church.  (He had been working at our current church as a youth pastor and then part-time associate pastor for the past 11 years.)  As we were looking at the timing of his degree, the boy’s school year, and my work schedule, we decided it would be best to get ahead of things and start applying for jobs in the beginning of 2017.

We poured over job listings, church websites, and prayed for God’s leading.

Now, I have to admit that I was a little stubborn at first.  I was okay with moving, but I wanted to stay on the east coast, close to both of our parents.  We found a few jobs/churches we liked, in Maryland, Tennessee, Michigan, and applied.  But all the while, I had this nagging feeling that I was putting fences around God.

One day, it was like a switch was flipped.  I knew that I needed to lift those geographic restrictions and completely trust that, if God decided to move us far from family, it would all be for our best and for His glory.  I shared with this with Jeff and he excitedly ran back to his computer to check the job listings.

He saved a few of them that he liked and, that evening, we sat together on the family room sofa, read over the descriptions, and looked at the church websites.  He read one description to me that had a familiar ring to it.  It wasn’t because I read it before, but because it mirrored a “dream job description” that Jeff had written for himself months earlier.  Almost point by point.

I sort of knew, deep in my heart, that was the job.

“Okay, where is it?”  I braced myself.

“It’s in Minnesota.”

I was surprisingly accepting of the distance from our families.  It would be sad to not be 8 miles from my parents and an easy days drive from Jeff’s parents, but other than that, I couldn’t think of one reason why I wouldn’t want to move to Minnesota.  I’m even okay with lots of snow and long winters.

So, Jeff sent in a resume and we waited.

In the mean time, we decided it was time to get ready to put our house on the market and share with friends and my blog audience that we would be moving on.  In April of 2017, I posted about it and, from that post, we received a walk-through and an offer on our house… without even sticking a sign in the yard or having to hire a realtor.  You can read that full, amazing story HERE.

Between February and April, Jeff had multiple conversations with the pastor from the church in Rochester where he applied.  He would give me a run-down of each conversation and we became more and more convinced that this was “the job”.  The interview process didn’t feel like an interview.  It felt like we were being pastored through a job search and like Jeff was getting to know a mentor and a friend.

Despite conventional human wisdom, we even stopped looking at other job listings.

Our house was under contract and the pastor and his wife flew in from Minnesota to spend a couple of days with us on our own turf.  It’s an unorthodox step in a job interview, to have your potential boss over to hang out at your house and take you and your kids out for ice cream, but they felt it was important to get to know us as a family and make sure there was good rapport.

There was.

(Sebastian even helped with that.  He curled up on the sofa between the pastor and his wife and relished in their attention.)

We were on a high after their visit.  We wanted to be careful to pray for God’s best for us and that church, but we let God know this was what we wanted!

The next step was driving out to Minnesota to visit, meet the staff, the Leadership Team, and some other people in the church.  But, the Lucketts Spring Market was only a few weeks away, our closing date was fast approaching, and a free weekend that worked for everyone involved was hard to find.

We were finally able to nail down the weekend of July 1.  From the vantage point of May, it felt so far away.  What if we waited for this interview weekend and it didn’t work out?  Should we start looking at other jobs just in case?  We closed on our PA house on July 13, so the timing was going to be really tight.  Uncomfortably tight.  Big-step-of-faith tight.  But tight isn’t impossible.

And God can totally handle tight timelines…

Read part two of our moving story HERE.

And the Parsons are moving to…

Related Posts

our welcome to Rochester

our moving story | part 3

our moving story | part 2

the best view in the house

147 Comments on “And the Parsons are moving to…”

  1. Oh that’s wonderful! I live In Western Wisconsin. You will absolutely love Rochester. It’s a great town to raise children in. Congratulations!

  2. Rochester will be a great fit for you! Please visit Kismet on Broadway. It is a beautiful consignment shop like no other.

  3. God is so so “exciting” with tight deadlines. He has always worked out everything in our family when it felt the end was drawing near. Praise the Lord!

  4. I’m native to the Rochester area and excited to have you here! Let me know if you need suggestions for anything in this area. We have lots of great junk and junkers around. You’ll fit in well.

  5. Minnesota welcomes you! We were just in your area last month and I realized how much PA and MN look alike. I hope you love Rochester, it has much to offer!

  6. Oh, I think that is wonderful!! You will love Rochester, and it is close to my home in Wausau WI. Maybe you could take a trip and visit our little shop called “THEME”, in Wausau. Congratulations!!

  7. Congratulations to you and your family!! We will miss you here in PA, but certainly wish you all well with this exciting new chapter! 🙂

  8. Isn’t it great to be in God’s perfect will, rather than His permissive will? Great things in store for you all!!

  9. Are you kidding??? I live here! I can’t believe it. What church will he one restoring? Welcome to our frozen tundra.

  10. Welcome to Minnesota! Rochester is a great city with much history and southeastern MN is beautiful! I have family who lives in ‘chester so I visit often. I used to visit PA when family lived there but they moved back to MN💜 you will soon see why!

  11. Awesome! My Aunt and Uncle live in Rochester! My uncle is a pastor at a small church. It’s a great area!

  12. Currently sitting on the fence waiting for a decision on our family future. Your phrase “putting a fence around God” hit home so deeply. I am now opening the fence gate and waiting patiently to embrace the future that God has planned – here or there. Best wishes on your move and the new life you will create in Minnesota with your family and church. You have blessed so many of us, it is time for you to receive the blessings.

  13. This is great news that you feel like it is the right job for your husband and family. Do you plan to rent/buy ja house or do you get a parsonage?
    I can’t wait to hear all about it!

  14. It is a beautiful town!! I visited there a couple of years ago…the history and beauty is just amazing!! many blessings sent to you and your family and your new venture

  15. I’m two hours from Rochester and was there on Wedenesday visiting family at the wonderful medical facilities! It’s an awesome area and tons to do in the surrounding communities. A short drive to Mall of America for shopping extravaganza! It is t always MinneSNOWta 😉

  16. Oh Marian, you can’t imagine how much I needed to read that very last line in your post today! I will be praying for you and your family as you enter this new chapter in your lives.

  17. It’s wonderful. Rochester is a great city, not too big and not too small. I lived in Minnesota all my life until moving to Wisconsin 3 years ago, which is the same thing anyway because I am on the river and look out the window at Minnesota all day long. Congratulations!

  18. Oh I am so happy for you and your family! I must admit that I would have loved you to come to Tennessee, but God had a plan! Congratulations!

  19. Congratulations on your move. We live in Mankato, less than two hours to the west, but Rochester was our home for five years. Lovely area and every convenience you would need. Just a note that I haven’t seen posted yet, Oronoco, just a few miles north has a Gold Rush Antique show in August that is just splendid. Hope all goes well, Steve and Mickie Ulmen

  20. Words like “amazing”, “God’s goodness”, “His wonderful and perfect timing” come to mind and all of that is true, but it is Faith that God really requires of us. Every time i hear of God’s faithfulness, I am reminded about much faltering human faith he ask of His children before there is picture or completed story to see. I am always uplifted to know of another brother and sister’s faith in the dark. Those are steps I can follow and remember. Thank you for sharing!
    ps Congratulations to Jeff on the new position! And you and the boys too! God’s continued blessings, this is definitely a “family position”.
    Pss: My prayers are also with your parents. Dear gussie, this is going to be different. My daughter lives in Iowa. For the last 5 years we have been having Cousin Camp for a couple of weeks with all of my grandchildren and rotations in and out of my sister’s grandchildren. I posted this years’ video on YouTube yesterday. It is: GranJan & Mimi’s cousin camp 2017 . If you start it, at least jump to the end. God gives special times to grandparents at cousin camp, and parents get a honeymoon! Best wishes!

  21. Congratulations to you and your family…going to miss you being in PA and at Lucketts.
    Can you now share where you always went to find your goodies in PA! 😉

  22. Lucky us!! I live in Minneapolis. The hubs & I go every year to Gold Rush Days in Rochester and Oronoco – it’s our favorite antique weekend every year! Now maybe I’ll run into you there 🙂

  23. I’m a fan of yours and of my Boxwood green milk-painted hutch, I’m a fellow believer (curious which church you’ll be serving at) ..and I’m from Rochester (living in nearby Oronoco.) I’d love to be on your welcoming committee. Send me an email if you’d like to connect.

  24. So happy for you! I loved reading this story, and I can’t wait to go back through the links and read how God has been working in your lives. 🙂 Makes me wonder if I’ve been putting limits on what God can do in my family’s life (probably so!). I hope your move goes very smoothly and you find the perfect house to make your own in Rochester!

  25. Welcome to MN! We welcome you with open arms and hearts! This comes from a fan in her mid-60’s who was born, raised and continues to live in this great state. I am hopeful that you will find the antique scene as inspiring as the wonderful area you are leaving behind. I am so excited that your move is bringing you here.
    Blessings to you and your family on this big move!

  26. What a blessing for you and your family! I’m sure your new church congregation is just as excited to welcome your family into their fold as you are to be embarking on this new adventure with our Lord’s blessing💙. Congratulations to “Mr. Mustard Seed” and family!

  27. So happy for you and your family! PA will miss you and I am so happy I had the chance to meet, talk and create with you a few times…even see your Studio…fun memories! I look forward to every new blog post about your adventure. Exciting!

  28. Oh yeah! So excited you’re coming to MN! You’ll be a short drive from Mpls, so I would love to introduce you to the best curbside junking experience you’ve ever had this fall! And there’s plenty of wonderful estate sales every weekend in the Twin Cities, too! Please look me up…we could even catch a musical;)

  29. I am your mom and my daughter is you!! Last year my daughter and husband were applying for a youth pastor position. They used to be 5 mins away but the lord moved them 6 hours away 😞 It’s been hard but I’m so proud of them for being obedient. They love there new church and city. They have even bought a house. Now I drive 6 hours once a month to see my 3 grand babies. So excited for you! And I know you will find the most amazing farmhouse to make your own.

  30. I was really praying for TN!!! Glad God doesn’t listen to me!!! Love you Marian. Hope you’ll always be Miss Mustard Seed.

  31. No.Way!!
    Serious chills from a longtime fan-who-thinks-they-know-you-but-doesn’t!
    My daughter is a third year Med student at Mayo!!! Rochester is a WONDERFUL town. We are Chicagoburbians but my third daughter picked “The U” (Twin Cities-that’s what they call it!) for college this fall.
    Still trying to embrace 2/5 of my fam in the Great White North but knowing your sweet fam is there too weirdly makes me feel better! Prayers for a safe and happy move and smooth transition for your boys. If you need a stopover on your way up we have room!
    Be well!

  32. When I saw this picture for the 2nd time, I knew I had to read your post….it looked like familiar territory! How exciting that you’re moving to Minnesota! I’m in northern Iowa! Can’t wait to see what you do in the area and hope to meet you in person one day! Welcome to the Midwest!

  33. I have been on the edge of my seat! I think this is a good match in so many ways. And I predict your parents will follow. You won’t miss them for too long.

  34. We live in Iowa and when we were kids we would vacation to Rochester! Now, my own family visits the Minneapolis area all the time. You will love it there!!!

  35. Exciting news for all of you! I enjoy reading and seeing how God is working all over the place. We will excitedly be watching as you set up a new home and life. May you all be blessed as you do God’s work!

  36. Welcome to our neighborhood!!! Welcome to CrossWinds, we are happy to have you with us. We missed meeting you, we were out of town that weekend. By the way, in the middle of August is the Oronoco Gold Rush Days–lots of antiques and such, you may be interested in!! We look forward to meeting you!

  37. Congratulations!! I’m glad you know where you are heading. Thank you for your bravery in sharing your faith. You are truly my favorite blog to read! -a fellow pastor’s wife

  38. I’m so happy for you. Your story sounds very similar to how we ended up pastoring in Northern Illinois. I had never heard of the place in Illinois where we are now but I have to say that it is a wonderful feeling knowing you are where God wants you to be.

  39. That’s amazing, Marian! Wishing you and your family all the best in Minnesota! One of my girlfriends relocates every few years due to her husband’s profession and she said Minnesota was hands down her favorite home and the only state she ever cried about when it was time to leave.

  40. Welcome! I grew up on a farm about 30 minutes SE of Roch and now live in the big Minneapple but go “home” every chance we get. Be sure to check out the Lanesboro area!

  41. Welcome to Minnesota! Rochester is a lovely city, not far from me. I think you will love our beautiful state! Your story inspires me to let go, and let God work. Looking forward to seeing what Minnesota life brings your way!

  42. You will love Rochester!! We lived there for 10 years and just move to Tx last year. Great place for families. Best of luck!

  43. Minnesota…..Don’t cha know!! A little birdie at Luckett’s told me there was something in the works but nothing finalized and if it worked out you would be 15 hours away from your current home in PA. So from that, I can of speculated it was somewhere in the Midwest.

    Congratulations to your family as you begin a new chapter in your lives. One thing for sure, you will be near one of the greastest health care facilities in the US. Of course, I had to go out to and check out the housing in Rochester. I found two that look like you and both had pending sales on them…Hmmmm. We will miss you on the east coast but I think you will fit right in to mid-west living.

  44. Wow isn’t that wonderful how things worked out. See you weren’t supposed to move a few years ago. God had bigger plans. Congratulations and best wishes. We will be moving to a new state hopefully next fall. Big exciting changes for us as well.

  45. Welcome to the Midwest. This is a beautiful area in Minnesota and I am so excited because it is only 5 hours from my house in Wisconsin. My daughter went to college in Winona, MN so it is an area I know well. If you have “events, sales, etc I will visit.

  46. Congratulations to your husband on his new position, and good luck to the whole family on your move. Rochester is sure lucky to get your beautiful family.

  47. Congratulations!! I was hoping for Southwest Missouri, but you are less than 9 hours away from me! If you set up at a market I can make that trip easier than driving to PA!! LOL It is amazing what God will do in our lives when we let down the fences!!

  48. Congratulations to Jeff on his new position, and to you Marian and your boys as well in finally knowing where you will settle! It must feel good to know where you will land and not have a big question mark anymore. I had initially hoped you would come to Southern California, but after considering it knew in my heart of hearts that this place just isn’t “you,” and frankly, I wouldn’t wish Los Angeles on my worst enemy, though Orange County is very nice. As a native California beach girl, I don’t know that I could tolerate the winters in that part of the country, but it sure is beautiful and that photo looks like heaven! I picture you finally having the farmhouse of your dreams, maybe even with some animals! It should be a great place to raise your boys. Best wishes and good luck!

  49. Thank you so much for sharing this so quickly after your house just closed yesterday. I am so excited for you all in this—congratulations! It is always so wonderful to see just how very personal God is with His own. It makes life an adventure for sure. We have moved a great deal, with company moves, but moving in last year to our 12th house (in 45 years of marriage) was one we chose in order to be closer to our kids and grands. Now they’re 2 hours away instead of 8. 🙂 Starting over is never easy but the newness and excitement and opportunities is so worth it!
    BTW, you would probably love the fun movie called New in Town starring Renee Zellweger and Harry Connick, Jr, released in 2009. It’s set in Minnesota and it’s about a woman executive who has to move from Miami, Fl to Minnesota in the winter to close a plant there. Touching, too and you’ll also laugh out loud!
    Blessings to you and praying for a great move and sweet transition time for y’all.

  50. I’m so happy for you and your family. PA will miss you but God has a plan and you must follow it. It will be exciting for us to watch this new chapter in your life. Finding the perfect home and of course decorating it with your beautiful ideas. Good luck and safe travels. 💕

  51. We lived recently moved from Rochester after living there for 3 years. My husband worked for Mayo Clinic and I started my own Etsy shop because of all the wonderful estate sales and thrift shopping. Mayo retains its physicians, know as the Golden Handcuffs of medicine, thus the city is populated with an eclectic and diverse mix of people who travel and have unique and sophisticated interests.

    We were becoming deeply involved at Autumn Ridge, I’m guessing that this might be the calling church?, and we’re saddened to leave it. There’s so much more to tell you…we lived on the SW side of town in Dr Mayo’s old apple orchard. There is lots of unique history there, and needs a person like you to uncork them and bring them to a new potential!

  52. Congratulations. I am so excited for you and your family. Rochester is a beautiful city. I live just two hours away. Blessings to you as you make the move and settle in.

  53. Since I follow your blog and live 3 hours from Rochester, I think it’s wonderful news. Congrats to your husband on his new position and welcome to MN. Really, winter isn’t that bad! Get the right clothing and embrace the seasons😏

  54. I was so excited when I read the first line of your post that I screamed, and frightened my husband!!! I live in Wisconsin, 75 miles from “Roch”! I was bummed when I learned you were leaving PA, as my sister-in-law lives near where you were and I had hoped to visit you, or take one of your classes, so this is wonderful! But the most important thing is that you’ve allowed the Lord to lead you to the perfect place He has for you.

    My dad was a pastor, and most of the churches he served were in southern Minnesota, two of them close to Rochester. I worked there for a year many years ago, and was shocked to see the changes that have occurred in the downtown area in recent years! In some ways it has become a very cosmopolitan city, with close connections to the rolling hills and farmland which surround it. And it’s rich culturally as well. Who knows, maybe you’ll even find time to harken back to your musical theater roots and do some performing! At any rate, we look forward with eager anticipation to follow you and your family on this great new adventure, and will be praying for you! And I hope we can meet someday soon!

  55. Hi Marian! Congratulations on moving to Minnesota! We know Rochester very well since we live close by in Houston, MN. You will have to visit the very southeastern corner or Minnesota since it is one of the most beautiful areas in the state. My mom and I actually re-do furniture and have toyed with the idea of applying to become a retailer for your paints! You will love the area for sure. Good luck with all the moving and getting settled 🙂

  56. This is super weird… this came up on my Google news feed… I wonder if it’s because I live in Rochester or because we share the same last name… our a combination of both… either way welcome to the neighborhood

  57. I think you will love Rochester. It’s a big city with a very small town feel. Our winters can be tough, but so what. It makes us appreciate summer more!!! I hope all goes well with the job, house hunting, school, friends…well, just everything. If you ever want to go antique shopping, I’m in New Prague not so very far from Rochester. Let me know and I’ll meet you. Welcome!

  58. Congratulations on receiving the job at a church in Rochester! We hope you will love Minnesota as much as we do! We retired from teaching in NW Iowa and now live in lakes country in the western part of the state. Our daughter lived in Rochester for several years, so we have experienced the great features of that area of the state, too. No one mentioned Junk Bonanza, which is held in Shakopee, MN, every fall and spring. That is one event you will definitely want to experience. Who knows, you may even want to set up your own booth there soon!
    God’s blessings to you and your family as you move!

  59. Welcome to our wonderful state! You will love it here! I grew up 30 minutes south of Rochester and my husband grew up in Rochester. We live in the Cities now but still feel a calling to that part of our lovely state. Let me know if you want a Minnesota cheat sheet 😄. I would be happy to oblige! Welcome!!!! You betcha!

  60. Best wishes on your upcoming move to our beautiful state, Minnesota – I know you’ll love it! And you’ll only be about an hour from the Twin Cities! Also, the river towns are adorable – Red Wing, Hastings, Stillwater – and up my way is Interstate State Park in Taylors Falls. If you get the chance, take a family vacation during the fall to Grand Marais up on Lake Superior – you won’t be disappointed… we have waterfalls! I admire your faith and trust in God’s plan for your family. Blessings and safe travels!

  61. You will love the area and the church. I go to the church you are moving to and look forward to meeting you and your family. Pastor Doug is great! You have a wonderful opportunity to grow with the church and you will really enjoy the area for the antiquing. Gold Rush (one of the top 10 flea markets in the US ) is just 4 miles from the church!
    Welcome to Minnesota!

  62. Welcome to Minnesota! We live in Minneapolis (not natives) and love this state. It really is “Minnesota Nice!”

  63. Marion, and family, Thanks for sharing your heart. I can see God’s Faithfulness and perfect timing through the whole transition. I’m so excited for what God has in store for you all. God’s Blessings to you all. God is so good!!!!

  64. Noooo, please pick Tennessee! Churches are failing here left and right. Nobody goes to church anymore because it’s run by child molesters, yet STILL thinks it’s alright to tell everyone else how to live their lives. If a non-religious person hears some Jesus freak say they talked to god, they either sound like they have an undiagnosed mental health problem, or they think they are WAY superior to you. This is why everyone hates the religious freaks. You will be much happier in the south. Take your Buick and head south. Realize that God is not there when you pray. Realize you are talking to yourself like a crazy person. Drop god, and your life will improve in every way… -exchristian

    1. Dustin,
      I am truly sorry to hear that somewhere along the line, you were disappointed by Christians. We can sometimes, even often, be a poor reflection of Christ. We fail. We make mistakes. We can be hypocritical, prideful, judgmental, and much worse. That does not change who God is, though.

      When I was younger, I was deeply hurt by other Christians and it caused me to turn away from my faith for years. But God’s love was irresistible and I cannot deny His work in my life.

      I don’t want to argue with you or convert you. Your relationship with God or even belief in God is a personal one. I don’t judge you or think I’m better than you in any way. I sincerely wish you the best.

  65. Hello! I was born and raised in Rochester (now living in Minneapolis) and can say with certainly that your family will love it. It’s a growing city and a great place to raise children. If you need an old furniture fix, contact me! My dad has been collecting/hoarding furniture for years in his shed and just wants it to go to a loving family 🙂 welcome to Minnesota!

  66. We were on a business trip to Lacrosse, Wisc. about 25 years ago and I looked at the map over the motel
    check in desk and saw that Minn. was the next state over where I have a cousin. Anyway, I rented a car
    and off I went. I was struck at the beautiful country side and the well kept farms and barns. Of course
    I got lost finding her house but we had a nice visit. I think you will like it there. Just think about it being
    one plane ride away from your family. The first year will be hard because everything will be new and different.
    If you adjust well the kids will follow. You must know this being from a military family. So best of luck.
    I am sure there is another Lucketts out there to. Mary in NH

  67. Oh how happy I am for you! Minnesota is lovely. My mother is from there and we spent every summer going “up the lake” to their place in Two Harbors. So I too have made the Biglerville to Minnesota drive. You will love the mid west. Best of luck.

  68. So happy for you and your family that you know where you are moving. You will LOVE MN! I’m from Michigan and we moved to MN 30 years ago for my husbands residency and we planned to move back when it was done. We fell in love with the state and have been here ever since. I have a friend in real estate and she helps people relocate here. It happens all the time where people are transferred here unhappily and then when their company transfers them again they don’t want to leave and look for jobs so they can stay. ROCHESTER is a great place to live and raise kids. It will be an adjustment being farther away from family but I think you will find you will be very happy you moved here. Best wishes for a smooth and easy move!

  69. when I read that you are moving to Rochester, Minnesota I had to see how far it is from me in Iowa (little more then 3 hours).

  70. Oh my gosh, you will love the upper Midwest! I feel like an old friend is moving back near me, and I’ve never even met you! Best wishes and a warm welcome.

  71. I haven’t read your emails for awhile (sorry, Marian 😳) but today when it popped up, I clicked on it! What a leap of true FAITH! Good luck on your journey to the North Country! ❤️

  72. I wish you and your family all the best in your new home! It is also where the Mayo Clinic is located so you are in good company. Faith is always worth depending on! To the next chapter…

  73. Marian, It was meant to be as it all fell into place!

    So happy for all of you that you have found a home . Now it will mean searching for another house to decorate ! 😊😊😊

  74. It is a wonderful thing to look back and see what God has done. God bless you and your family on this wonderful journey.

  75. Congrats to you and your family. Seems just so perfect and right. You will love MInnesota. The people are great. I have never met anyone from there that I didn’t like immediately. So, you’ll fit right in.

    Good luck with moving and purging. With all your lovely items, I know you have a task ahead if you!

    Can’t wait to see what furniture finds you’ll accumulate in your new state!


  76. This is so cool to hear how God worked…and is working! I especially remember when you had your home on the market last time with no takers. I thought it was extremely unusual, especial for your amazing home! But God had/has His perfect timing and His way of doing things. This is super exciting! I can’t wait to hear all the new adventures that await you and your family. I must say living far from family will be the hardest part. I know, because I’ve done it for years. Fortunately, Skype, WhatsApp, and Southwest Airlines make it a bit easier!

    Have a wonderful time settling in to your new surroundings. From reading the above comments, you already have a community of friends! I wish I lived closer, but still about 1,000 miles away!

    Enjoy the adventure!

  77. Well…I’m crying for reasons I can’t completely explain. I think it is partly because God’s provision is so amazing and partly because you might have to give up sketching for knitting woolens! I’m so glad you found your Godspot. I can’t wait to hear of your triumphs and trials and what you learn in both.


    My daughter and family (five little ones) are stationed in MA, but it turns out it is a 3.5 hour DIRECT flight from Ft. Myers. I ❤️ the respite of Cape Cod, the snow, turkeys, lobstas, hydrangeas and all things NOT Southern. I know you will continue to blossom. Best of all you will be sharing it with all of us.

  78. I love to help my boys and have been in Greenville SC for over 5 years. Love it. But one of my other boys said he wanted me close to my granddaughter. I was the Grandma that mailed gifts, sent cards and visited two times a year. So I made the move to Illinois. I have told everyone it is my next adventure. And I hope I have many more.

    We are very familiar with Rochester, Minnesota. My youngest had his kidney transplant there. We have an older brother to thank for that. My husband was a patient there with his cancer. We always felt it was like a small town. That small town friendliness. Winter are brisk, but I am sure you will look beautiful in a parka. Enjoy your family and your new adventure in Rochester.

  79. I’m so happy for you and your family! You are about to embark on a ride like no other. My husband and I have experienced some very similar God confirmations in our many years of moving, selling and wondering what’s next in ministry. “As for God, His way is perfect.”
    Mark these stones of remembrances, (ebenezers) along the way, so that you may come back to them and reread when things feel less than the way you thought they might.
    I have loved following you and all your creativity. God’s beautiful Minnesota countryside awaits😊

  80. Congratulations on the new family adventure!! As a former Navy brat, I’ve learned that change is a great opportunity if you open your heart and mind to it. Sounds like you have! I know that you will find this an amazing experience as you take on new challenges, terrains, culture and history and that you will revel in the wonders of your boys learning new traditions. And above all, how wonderful to how to be doing all of this with a family you love!! My sister and I remain intensely close, in part because of all the wonderful experiences we shared on similar adventures while growing up. Having a close family on such an adventure can make even the most tentative of us brave!! All the best and can’t wait to hear what you and your family conquer in your new quest!😍

  81. Yeah for Minnesota!!!! Woohooo! We’re in the Twin Cities area, so not super close, but STILL Minnesota!!

  82. Congratulations on your move to Rochester! Only visited there once but found it very comfortable and welcoming. I’m sure your family and all else will thrive there. Can’t wait to hear more.

  83. Oh, Marian, your faith story is so beautiful! I know you and Jeff and your boys will love the Midwest and will be richly blessed. And I know MMS will blossom there, too! Thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us. You have so many friends who love you and pray for your blessings on your new journey!

  84. OH! MY! GOODNESS! I live in Minnesota!!! I’m so excited! There are so many talented and wonderful women in the Rochester area and great shopping, farm sales and auctions. The winters are not as bad as the East coast has had the last few years. Maybe the weather there was prepping you for here. The food in MN is also wonderful as are the lakes for camping and fishing if you like to do those things. Fresh walleye on the grill and fresh wild blueberry pie just might win you over. I can give you names of some amazing rug hookers if you want to give it a go. I’m excited for you. God picked a very very good place for you and your family.

  85. Thank you for sharing your great moving testimony!! It’s wonderful how you surrendered to not boxing God in. I can truly understand wanting to stay closer to parents and the boys’ grandparents but God had the perfect place for you and your family to minister. How wonderful!
    From reading some of the other posts, the town sounds lovely and has many opportunities for your business. I’m so looking forward to seeing what you will accomplish with your next home as well.
    God’s Blessings to you and your family as you move into HIS plans for all of you!

  86. Oh, how exciting! Congratulations! I bet your boys are beyond thrilled with the prospect of outdoor adventures! God is so sweet and faithful! Happy Weekend! Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  87. Wow! What a GOD story. I wept as I read this with chill bumps and all. Sounds like the anointing was right in the middle of it all . Happy Pastoring to Jeff, you, and your family.

  88. The most amazing things happen when you “let go and let God” (we know; we’ve adopted four kids). We have friends in Rochester, and it’s a wonderful little city. Congratulations and godspeed!

  89. What?!? That’s where I live!!! I have been following your blog for quite some time now but I don’t comment. I leave that to your younger generation. I’m pretty sure I’m older than your Mom! But this was such fun to hear I HAD to say something!

    I’d love to know what church you are going to! Someone left a comment that they used to go to Autumn Ridge Church here in Rochester. That’s where I’ve gone for many years but I haven’t heard of a new hire so…

    I also collect and sell antique and vintage treasures at our own Occasional Sales with two friends and our families. We hold it at an historical home here called The Plummer House where we also live and work as Resident Directors. You can look up the Plummer House on the internet. We’d love to give you and your family a free tour. It’s one of the loveliest places in Rochester!

    So welcome to Rochester, Mn!

  90. Wow!!! I go to the field for wheat harvest and come back to find your great story of how God worked in your move. So happy for your family!! At least you’re getting closer. (Hee hee!) Can’t wait to read about all the exciting “new” things to come.

  91. Marian, I think you and your family will LOVE Minnesota. It’s so beautiful and the people are great! Do you remember Lake Wobegone? “Where the women are strong, all the men are good looking and the children are above average.” 😀 I’m so happy for you!

  92. I am so happy for you that your husband has a job and you know where you’re going! That has to be such a great relief. I will be praying that you and your family find the right house. But the way God has obviously been working in your lives so far, He probably already has the perfect one picked out. He’s just waiting for you all to start looking.

  93. I’ve already looked- you are fourteen hours from me in Colorado. Now maybe I’ll be able to finally visit whatever workshop or storefront you open ! I’m very happy for you and your family. Thank you for that dear testimony of faith.

  94. You are a wonderful model of faithfulness and you are so real in all your posts! It is easy to see that you grow and thrive in times of smooth sailing as well as rough waters. Your trust in God is what I strive for as well. Thank you for sharing your story.
    I Live in Lanesboro, mn just under an hour south of Rochester….was just there today! I’m always inspired by your style, especially the layering of old and new. Hope I have a chance to meet you.
    I think you would love to check out Lanesboro some day when you’re settled a bit.

  95. Marian, I am so happy for you and your family! We east coasters will miss your presence here! I am so blessed that I was able to meet you in person at this last Luckett’s Market. May God Bless you all as you begin the next journey in your lives.

  96. So happy for you Marian! God has big plans for you and your family in Minnesota. “Bloom where you are planted” is what my mother always told me as we were an Army family and moved every 2-3 years. We will miss you in VA, but you will be only a click away!!! God’s timing is always perfect and if we are in His will, His peace and contentment will be abundant. Can’t wait to hear all of your new adventures!!!

  97. Welcome to Minnesota from a California transplant. We live in Lakeville, MN and love to drive to Rochester for BBQ and you have to have dinner at the Canadian Goose Restaurant. Friday night all you can eat shrimp and fish. We drive an hour and a half just for dinner. So excited that I may finally get a chance to meet you in person. May God Bless your move and your family!
    Pam B.

    1. P.S. You must check out Gold Rush days if you have arrived in Rochester by August 18th. It is held at the Rochester Fairgrounds as well as covers the lawns of almost every house in the small neighboring town of Oronoco, MN. Who knows it may be your next Lucketts! May your husband be blessed and fulfilled in his new Pastoring job!

  98. Welcome to Minnesota! I live in St Paul and my son just moved to Rochester. We are helping him with his fixer-upper and visit quite often. I would freak out running imto you at Homegoods or Target!!
    I second the suggestion to go to Oronoco Gold Rush Days. It’s a ton of fun and right in your new backyard. Please please bring your magic to it next year.

  99. Welcome to MN!
    When I read your post yesterday I was like no way, could it be? Then at church tonight they showed a beautiful picture of your family! So excited to meet you all!

  100. I used to live in Fairfield, PA and have been following your blog to get that “little slice of home”. When we left PA we moved to Winona, MN…a short 45 minute drive from Rochester! Welcome to Minnesota from one east coast girl to another! 😊

  101. After I read your post, I couldn’t help but think that you have been painting landscapes for years that look like MN. Perhaps that was God preparing you for things to come. I live in TN, and while I would love to have you closer, it sounds like yall have chosen just the right place. After reading such great things about MN, I may have to move there as well one day! I will cherish getting to meet you at Luckett’s this year. Safe travels and blessings to you and all your family!

  102. It’s delightful reading your stories, Marian. This experience has been such a wonderful “let go and let God”! From all of the posts above, your new community is waiting for you with open arms. I know all of you will dive in deep when it comes to sharing real life with those around you. I’m imagining a wonderfully large farm table in your new home!

    Thanks again for sharing your family and friends with all of us.

  103. How fun! How absolutely wonderful that you will have an opportunity for a little farm if that’s still the way your heart leads you. After all, when one thinks farm, don’t they always think Minnesota? Seems your family background makes you perfect for discovering a new life in such a wonderful place to explore. And I’m sure you will be finding wonderful furniture and home goods in a new wonderland of opportunity. Wow…seems perfect! In Washington state, in 2002 after 9/11 happened, hubs and I wanted to change our lives due to working 10 hour days at managerial jobs. One night we stood at a window and put out to the universe that we wanted _____. We filled in the type jobs and filled in the description of a place to live and a slower lifestyle, etc. Then we left it to God saying we would accept what came to us. Two days later, a call, offering the perfect job, came at night from New Mexico about an executive job my husband had applied for months before and forgotten about (we were hoping for an Alaska job that he had flown to twice for an interview). Long story short…we moved to New Mexico within a month, they bought our house from us and relocated us, and hub’s new position was perfect for him and his new boss turned out to be the best. They still remain fast friends although another promotion moved us to Texas (his home state) … and the job in Alaska was never filled because they moved the whole operation to New Mexico! God does work wonders.

  104. How exciting! My great great grandparents emigrated from Norway and settled in a little town not far from Rochester. (LeRoy, it’s called) I took a trip back there 2 years ago (I now live in Alaska) to do family history research and LOVED all the antique stores and thrift stores in those little towns. And, the garage sales were great fun, too! You’ll fit right in. Best wishes from a life-long Vikings fan! Skol!

  105. Congratulations on your move to Rochester and on Jeff’s new job. My father was born and raised in Kasson, a small farming community about twenty minutes from Rochester. It’s a lovely area and I’m sure you’ll love it there.

  106. Marian, what good news for Jeff, you, and the boys (and Sebastian). What a wonderful account of God’s faithfulness! Hoping you get a property with a big yard for the boys and Sebastian, and room for you to continue with your God-given creativity. Praying for safe travels.

  107. This scripture came to mind as soon as I read you were leaving your family. Matthew 19:29 “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms for My name’s sake will receive many times as much, and will inherit eternal life.”
    ‭I believe there will be great blessings & an eternal reward for you & your family for stepping out in faith and obedience in this move Marian. How exciting!

  108. Best wishes to all.
    It would appear you have embraced this next chapter with a confident determination. Your new home will be good to you and you to it.
    Still, moving IS a big deal. May all the pieces neatly fall into place . . .
    standing by thinking of you and your family.

  109. Hi Marion~
    I’ve chatted with you here many times and again! WoW and Congratulations to you and your family. I am a Minnesota girl, born, raised, and one month ago followed our dream to move to Colorado~ I adore lush, green, warm, beautiful Minnesota. I always call it “My Minnesota.” I visit Oronoco and Rochester Gold Rush Days and the MANY shops all over our state~ you will be in nirvana. One of my besties lives in Rochester, and I”ve had the Mayo Clinic experience as well. Enjoy all of it. What an adventure, maybe you are replacing me in “My Minnesota.” Best wishes to you and yours, and may your husband’s work be in God’s hands. Minnesota always provides a warm welcome~ the winters are beautiful, go to the North Shore of Lake Superior as soon as you can :). Soak it all in~. I miss My Minnesota home and I am embracing my new Colorado home~
    Stay well, travel safe~ Cynthia

  110. Next we’ll hear about Miss Mustard Seed’s newest hobby — ice sculpting. She’ll post a picture of herself with chainsaw in hand! Congrats on your placement and Mr. Parson’s new opportunity to spread the good news of the Lord. Everyone is saying such good things about Rochester I’m going to have to plan an August trip to there and Oronoco. Wishing you and your family many blessings. Now, what box are the skates in?

  111. We are so looking forward to having you in our church. We have an amazing church family. You’ll see me singing on stage, and I have a passion for blogging too! I can’t wait to connect with you all.

  112. Congrats on your new Pastoral position!!! May you always continue to let go and let God. Enjoy this new chapter in your lives.

  113. We live not far from there. I have followed your blog for years and it will be exciting to have you in our area!

  114. Sweet. Selfishly I prayed it would be Minnesota (I live in Minneapolis) so you could come and decorate my house. All those furniture finds, well now I could pick them up….and upholstery — I could bring a French chair and pay you to upholster. Rochester is an interesting town with “Gold Rush” days that I am sure you can take part in. Best of everything; good luck and safe travels!

  115. WOW!! I am blown away! I grew up on a beautiful farm nust 45 minutes west of Rochester!! I am in Florida now (my hubby brought me back to his childhood town) but I miss Minnesota and all the beauty it has to offer!! Enjoy the landscape, the sky (the clouds are AMAZING up there!!), the snow in winter and the lakes! You will love all of the old farms and all they have to offer (estate sales will blow you away with all the amazing things!!) God has led you to a place that I personally think is a little piece of heaven! Blessings to you and your family in your new ministry and I look forward to reading about all of your new adventures! Maybe I will even get to meet you when I am visiting my family!

  116. I really hope you can find Ironstone in Minnesota! I will keep my fingers crossed for you! Best of luck on the move.

  117. Congratulations! Will look forward to reading about all the new adventures you and your family have. I really admire your faith and have enjoyed reading how it has guided your steps. Blessings to you all.

  118. I could relate when you said you let God know what you wanted. I always pray to God for the best thing to happen, but I often say, “listen God, I know you are really busy, so if it will help if I take something off your plate, you could give me what I want and check this one off your To Do list now.” I don’t always get what I think I want, but it is not for lack of trying.

  119. You will absolutely love Rochester. I always said I wanted to take a vacation so I could check out Luckett’s and meet you and shop your wonderful finds. I live an hour away from Rochester, so hopefully you can join some of our flea markets, bonanza’s, etc around here and I’ll get my chance. 🙂 And I’ve always said I wished you lived closer, so I could hire you to decorate my home. 🙂 Welcome to MN!

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