Just Jump

Have you ever had a dream?

Something that you thought was unattainable, out-of-reach, pie-in-the-sky.

A dream that you put away on a shelf and take out only when life is at its most overwhelming.  A dream that you never thought in your wildest imaginings would ever come true.

But sometimes when you least expect it….when you have given up all hope….your dream becomes reality.

Dreams are funny like that.

This is our dream.

You see….we lived in the hustle bustle world of a big city with all the lights and fanfare that a big city has to offer.  There were restaurants and shops and movies and plays and museums and malls and lots and lots and lots of stuff.

And my husband was on the fast-track in a tall skyscraper in the middle of that very very big city with all of its fast-paced allure and over-whelming responsibilities.  And we were happy with our four children in our hustle bustle house and our hustle bustle lifestyle….but we were so busy. 

Maybe too busy.

Too busy for each other.

Too busy for our family.

But amidst all of that busy….was a dream.  A dream of a place where life was simpler.  A place where our children could run and breathe and grow without all of the constraints of an overwhelmingly fast-paced lifestyle. 

A place where the all of the busy and the hustle and bustle and the noise and the clamor could end in a screeching stand-still.

A place where you could see the stars.

But the merry-go-round was spinning faster and faster.  Life was moving speedily along.  We felt like we spent all of our time and energy just trying to keep up. 

And then one day in church, the pastor preached a sermon entitled, “Just Jump.”  He spoke of listening to your heart and the Lord and if you felt like there was an insurmountable dream….you shouldn’t be afraid….you should jump.

We were afraid. 

We were so scared. 

We couldn’t just jump off the merry-go-round.  Or could we?  The doubts were swirling around and around in our head. 

But there it was…..a still small voice saying…..


Not “jump” in all caps, but “jump” in tiny, small, timid, little letters.

And so we did……

                           …..jump, that is.

We jumped from the hustle and bustle and busy to a still, quiet, beautiful countryside with acres and acres of land to run and play and….


It has been five years since that first jump and our family continues to grow and thrive.  The move has had its challenges and blessings.  Truthfully, sometimes I miss the hustle and bustle.  I miss the convenience of a drive-thru diet coke.  Sometimes I miss the busy.

And then I walk outside on a crisp, clear, January night….

                                                                            …..and I see the stars.

53 thoughts on “Just Jump

  1. I LOVE this post. I’ve heard that still small voice, too. I’d love to hear it every day, telling me what to do down to the small details. One time I heard, “step out in faith” when I thought I would not be able to purchase a house, but would have to rent. I made a phone call to a realtor, and we began looking at houses. The second day we looked at a house I ended up buying 9 months later when they dropped the price. We closed on Valentine’s day 9 years ago. Before I found out the price dropped, I prayed for a scripture, and got Deuteronomy 8. It talks of moving into the promised land and remembering how you got there – by the grace of God. I knew something was getting ready to happen, but I didn’t know it would be the house I now live in. 🙂 He really does care about the details of our lives, and wants to give us the desires of our hearts. He wants us to have time to spend with him, too. Thanks for this sweet reminder! I love your blog.

  2. Oh, I would love to live in that dream! That’s our dream, too. To live out in the country, instead of five minutes from Memphis and all that comes with it. Wishing we had the means to jump…someday we will. 🙂 Happy New Year!

  3. I can certainly tell you how beautiful your home is because it is incredible, but more than that is the story and the beauty it holds. I love that you heard God speaking…I love that you listened and obeyed…I love that you jumped because He said you could!!! How blessed your family will be because you listened and because you jumped!

    Thanks for sharing.

  4. So glad that you “jumped”. You are so right! Farm livin’ is the life for me. Land spreadin’ out far and wide. Keep Manhattan, just give me the countryside.

  5. This is such a wonderful post! I love hearing how God speaks to His kids! Your home is so lovely, so glad that you listened for your direction. You are on my sidebar so I can keep up with you easily, thanks for sharing this with all of us, xoxo

  6. O, Kari, I so remember when you bought this dream house…all the work you’ve done on it…I remember how excited but scared you were…i remember the butler’s pantry and how proud of it you were…
    I am so thankful your dream has come true. I know it hasn’t been a bed of roses ALL the time…but how blessed you are to realize such a huge dream coming true.
    What a wonderful gift you and Mr. Thistlewood have given your four children.
    It makes my heart feel good, just knowing how you had the courage to jump.
    xo bj

  7. Kari,
    sometimes things come to us in unexpected ways! Your house is gorgeous and you are so lucky to be living your dream! Having the courage to let go of the fear and take that leap can bring us such joy!
    Can’t wait to see what fun and adventures the New Year brings us!
    Happy New Year

  8. we are soul sisters! i will eventually blog about this but 8 years ago my husband and i ( prior to our kids) moved from our atlanta subdivision to alittle town in north georgia ( pop 500?) and purchased 25 acres in the country and built our dream home. I experience the same thoughts and feelings from time to time but love the lifestyle for my childern. besides not being so close to the stores/mall means I spend less money shopping?

  9. Jumping is a great thing……..Step forward with a smile because only good lies ahead when we trust. Your words clarified something that I have been questioning lately myself so thankyou….you just gave me the little push that I required x

  10. Beautiful and sweet post. Congratulations on your jump. This calls to mind:

    “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jer 29:11


  11. Good for you for listening to that quiet little word. You have been brave, and as a result you have created a home to love and a haven filled with love.

    We jumped over twenty-one years ago. We jumped from a big city life to life in a much smaller city in another state. It was the right time for our family. I admit it was tough on me. I was the one that had always lived in a big city, and I loved it. It took me quite some time to love it here. Many people that live here think this is a big city area, but for me it is not.

  12. Your home is incredible and has that look of timeless elegance. I think it’s perfect that you can always go back to the hustle and bustle for a visit and then come home to the serenity of your gorgeous place. What wonderful inspiration to the power of faith! ~Lili

  13. I hope your post today can encourage others to “jump”. Maybe their jump is a little different than yours but without dreams and the belief that they can be achieved life can be pretty empty.

    Your home is beautiful and I’m sure your family has grown in many ways from your “jump”.

  14. Ohhhhhhhhhh what a beautiful, beautiful, beautiful post! What a wonderful story. What a lovely, lovely home. Thank you for sharing all of this, with us. Even though it is so beautiful, that I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. 🙂

    Have I had an impossible dream? Yes. Did I jump? Yes. -Cheshire Cat smile-

    “It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is
    than to persist in delusion,
    however satisfying and reassuring.”

    – Carl Sagan (1934-1996)

  15. Your home is beautiful. I have also jumped….it is very satisfying!

  16. I love it!!! I am so glad that you listened to that sermon and that you allowed God to whisper it into your heart again and again. Your home is gorgeous! I love that your children have space to breathe and most importantly, they have YOU.
    Hugs, Cindy

  17. We went the opposite way – stuck in the burbs to burbs but close to a bustling town and the city – which I love! Always talk about one day though – who knows. Your house is fab and sounds like it’s a great place for the kids.

    By the way – I do plan on posting before pics of the basement but don’t want to scare anyone!

  18. i am so happy that you are living your dream!!!! it makes my heart happy! your home is truly a dream but for some reason — the kindness and love of your family make the lights glow!!!! thank you for sharing with us and reminding us of the important things!!! sending tons of hugs…

  19. Wow! This is such an inspiring post!!! I’m so impressed by you taking the risk and following your dreams!!! That is so GREAT!!! Sometimes in the hussle and bussle of city life it’s even hard to hear that voice!!! I’m so encouraged to listen better thanks to your awesome words!!! Thanks for entering my giveaway, I’m so glad to know about your blog and begin following your story!!! XO, Aimee

  20. Oh this post is wonderful. Having been a full fledged out-all-night city girl turned suburbanite who kicks around the long term possibility of moving even further into the country and away from the madness, I totally get it. Way to make the jump and follow your heart!

  21. Your home is certainly a beautiful one. I imagine it took a lot of nerve to jump. I feel like I want to jump, but I am not sure in which direction! Thank you so much for your visit to my blog. I’m glad you liked the Old English Blessing. Happy New Year.

  22. Isn’t it amazing how God speaks to us? It can be through so many different ways, the preacher’s sermon, a conversation with a friend or in the quiet of the night. God is so good! He has helped you to fulfill a dream! Thank you for sharing your gorgeous home! Your story is a sweet reminder of His love for us and the season! Your pics are lovely!!!

  23. So thankful and amazed that the Awesome Almighty not only chooses to speak to us in His ‘still, small voice, but DELIGHTS to do so! Blessings upon you,My Dear Sister!

  24. Your home is just so beautiful! We took a little jump and left the big city for the suburbs. I hope one day we’ll be able to make a big JUMP and move further away for more space and more importantly, peace. Happy New Year to you!

  25. wow, I love this post. It so speaks to me. Our family lives in the suburbs of a big city and I often dream of a different lifestyle – although I know we are so fortunate to be where we are. I have a feeling I will find quite a bit of inspiration here. am your newest follower. liz

  26. Sure, I have dreams – then I awake and realize I am living a huge dream right here on the planet earth. Wonder what heaven has in store. Let me turn down the heat.
    I can hardly wait.

  27. wow. i’m awestruck. what a beautiful post!! so true. i can remember nights in romania where the starts were SO bright. our last night we saw a shooting star and i was just amazed by God’s glory. love this post and blog! thanks for stopping by PPS as well. it’s fun to find new blogs and make blogger friends!

  28. Happy New Year. I love your home – and you have decorated it in such peaceful, serene colours. May God bless you.
    We “jumped” too to our not so beautiful – but still well-loved – home here in France 6 and a half years ago. We’re very happy too…

    God is great. Though sometimes it’s very hard to see how what is happening CAN be for our good, I guess we do have to trust him. It’s hard though, isn’t it?

    I hope you continue to visit my blog, as I visit yours.

  29. This is my first visit to your blog, and this was my first post of yours I read and I am sitting here with tears running down my face.

    I think that was truly one of the most beautiful posts I have ever read.

    Bless you, what an amazing thing. Wow. Really hit my heart.

  30. Your home is STUNNING inside and out! I’m not kidding whenever I say that your sense of style and decor is very inspiring for me! My husband and I are in transition right now in our lives as he finishes up Med school, and after renting small places for years I feel like this post gives me hope that you day we will also have our dream home! Beautiful– you should be proud! The Lord has blessed you!
    🙂 Leslie

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