I have to say it’s good to be home.
We had the summer of a lifetime. Here’s a roundup:
Flew into Atlanta. Six days to get over jet lag.
Four hour drive to Asheville. Three days to see family and friends.
Two hour drive to Charlotte. Meeting at night, and a day to hang out with my brother.
Fly to Boston. Four days to rest (because it was $500 cheaper to fly three one ways via Boston, than a roundtrip from anywhere close to California and we’ve always wanted to see Boston anyway)
Fly to San Francisco. Miraculously see my grandmother one last time.
Drive to Los Angeles. Meeting and then spend time with my best friend growing up.
Drive to Santa Barbara. Lunch meeting at Westmont College.
Drive to Atascadero. Meet with Jake’s childhood friend and his family. Thank God for boys the same age as ours!.
Drive to Oakland. Jake goes to a Oakland A’s game with his Dad and brothers. Abby and kids hit Fisherman’s Wharf.
Back to San Francisco area. Because we were tired, and Jake’s aunt offered us a place to sleep.
Drive to Sonora. A week with Jake’s parents.
Drive to San Jose. Meet with friends and see brother and his family.
Back up to San Francisco via beach. By this point, the kids are so used to sleeping whenever wherever we all conked out on the plane.
Fly to Atlanta. After the whirlwind, it felt like coming home.
Stay in Atlanta for a few weeks. Jake takes the CELTA class. Abby enjoys Atlanta with kids. Highlights include splash pads, Piedmont Park and the Coca Cola Museum.
Drive to Asheville for a week. Abby and kids spend time with family. Meeting.
Back to Atlanta for a couple more weeks. It’s coming down to the wire on the visas. Realize even Fed Ex isn’t going to be fast enough, so….
Drive to Washington, D.C. to apply for visas in person. With kids. See the National Air and Space Museum and then, since it’s our last change to see the coast….
Drive to Virginia Beach because it’s “on the way” back to Atlanta. Well, sort of.
Drive to Atlanta. Time to pack it all up and make sure we aren’t going over five bags at 50 pounds.
Fly to Buffalo. Just me and Jake. So we decide to….
Drive to Niagara Falls, Canada. It was beautiful. We saw fireworks.
Back to Buffalo. Spend the night before we
Drive to Houghton. Meet with a friend. And then….
Back to Buffalo so we can
Fly to Atlanta. Thank God the kids did great while we were away. Time to say goodbye and ….
Fly to Kazakhstan.
Like I said, glad to be home.
Thank you to everyone who made this summer possible. Thank you to Debbie for meeting us at the airport, both times, and giving up her room for our family. For praying for us with all the decisions, especially the visas at the end. To Nathanael and Emmy L’Heureux for opening their home to us in Atlanta and loving us and our children. The kids love their teacher! To Debbie and Jen who shared their bathroom with us. To my parents who hosted us and drove us to Charlotte. To my brother, Joseph, who hung out with us and then took us to the airport. To Angela, who gave us her apartment and fed us and her home group. To Tim and Telford, for making room in their schedule for us. To Dan and Mary, who opened up their home so we had a place to sleep. To Ron and Sue, who let us stay with them even on the day they had just moved into their new apartment. To Jake’s parents, who spoiled our kids (in a good way). Nathan is still asking to play mini golf again. To Rakhim, the guy at the consulate who had compassion on us. To Dr. Mullen, who also made room in her schedule for us. And others whose names I don’t know, like the security guard who put threw his body in way of the door at the Atlanta airport so the kids didn’t get separated from us on the airport train.
Thank you most of all to the Lord, for being faithful. Through all the emotions and all the travel. You put your peace on the kids and gave grace every step of the way.