Jul 30, 2009

Goodbye America!

This will be my last posting from the USA for awhile.
As I sit in the hotel lobby listening to the chatter of check-out, reality is starting to set in - I am leaving my country of origin.
We'll stop by Target today, just because I can, grab some lunch somewhere where the menu is only in English, and then we'll head to the airport.
I feel like I should be scared to death of this adventure that lies ahead, but for some reason I am not. I'm not particularly excited, scared, or sad. I think I'm just ready.
Eli probably said it best yesterday "I'm ready to go to Germany so we can get a house". I think we are ready to get to Germany so we can get started on our new life. We have a house, car, and church to find, friends to meet, and exploring to do. We have had almost exactly a year to prepare for today. I don't know that I'm really prepared for the life we will have in a foreign country but I'm ready to get it started.
I'll try and update as soon as I can, it all depends on internet availablitity now!
Until next time . . .

Jul 28, 2009

Hit the Road Jack

The bags are packed and loaded.
We stopped by Round Table, Jamba Juice, and In & Out for a last dose of yummy goodness. (Not all in one day, though that isn't entirely unheard of.)
We are having dinner with the family tonight and then off to San Francisco to catch our flight.
This is the end of one journey and the beginning of a whole new adventure.
Let's Go!

Jul 27, 2009

The details

Here is the latest scoop.
We will arrive in Frankfurt around 8am on Friday morning. After clearing customs we will be transported by shuttle to Mannheim (unless of course our destination changes upon arrival).

I could list the frequently asked questions here, but it would probably just be easier to say this: no matter what your question is, the answer is
"I'm not sure, we'll have to find out when we get there".

Jul 26, 2009

The Final Countdown

In about 48 hours I'll be leaving California, and 36 hours later leaving the country. Claiming this vacation has "flown by" is an understatement.
We have truly had an incredible time here. We saw a lot of people and fit in quite a few things, and still managed to have a relaxing vacation.
I haven't blogged because I have been having too much fun. I wanted to blog. In fact, I occasionally found myself writing in my head. I had some great thoughts that I wanted to share and some good stories. I took pictures of each place we stayed because I wanted to document that here on my blog. Notice, I only posted that first place. Where did I put the rest of those pictures? I wanted to write about the Mormon guys that showed up at the park while my friend and I were there one day. I took pictures of them to prove to Ryan that Mormons wear helmets and ride bikes while witnessing. I also wanted to write about the fact that I was at the park that day with my friend Christy who I haven't seen or even spoken to in 10 years. It was so amazing how much we still had in common after all that time.
In a moment of reflection, I planned to compare the trials of the move to me being on a boat and how I get insanely seasick. I wanted to recommend the movie "The Proposal" and I was going to post pictures of us doing all kinds of fun things. I was going to write about our trip to Van Damme and recount what happened when Rosie (Matt's dad's dog) drank the oil from the fish fry and burped and puked all the way home from Mendo. I meant to announce that we are unofficially moving to Mannheim instead of Ansbach, which means Matt won't have to leave for a year, and write about how thankful I was that my cousins came all the way down from almost-Canada just to see us for a few days. There was so much to share, but I just never made it to the computer to do it. Maybe I'll relive these moments later when nothing exciting is happening in my life.
As I'm looking back on this trip and trying to wrap it all up two things come to mind. First, one of the best things about this vacation is that my kids had the time of their lives. They received the best gift ever - time. The boys were blessed with the opportunity to spend time with some special people in their lives - without Matt and I. They loved every minute they spent with their family and I know they will be talking about all of their adventures for quite awhile.
The second thing is what this vacation did for me. During the last church service we attended in Virginia we sang a song that had these few simple words in it "fill us up and send us out". These words really spoke to me that Sunday, and have become a theme for this vacation. The last few weeks in VA were hard on our family. Matt and I were fighting, the boys were tired of being stuck in a room to watch movies while we were cleaning the house or taking care of other business. It seemed that everything from the movers to getting on the plane was a battle. We sold our car, watched our house empty, shipped a car, left our home, said "goodbye" to dear friends, and were faced with an unknown future. How did I hold it together?
But, that is not the end of our story. I was emotionally drained by the time I got on that plane to Oakland but when I head back to the airport Tuesday night I will be filled. God didn't intend for us to embark on our new adventure run down, empty, and frustrated. Nope. He afforded us the opportunity to come to California, spend time with our family, and be filled back up with good things, great things.
While I still don't know anything about where we are living, when our stuff will arrive, when we will be settled, or what to expect when we get to Germany, I'm confident that Matt, the boys and I will leave here filled up and ready to be sent out on a new adventure.
In the hours that lie ahead I'm just going to be soaking in every last drop of joy and love that can squeeze into me. I don't know what Friday will bring but I think I'm ready!

Jul 11, 2009

Catching Up

We spent our first 5 days in California with our pals Tom, Mika, and their girls at Tom's dad's house in Antioch. There was a lot of poolside laughter and fun! We also went into SF to catch a Giant's game and roam around the city. We had a fabulous time relaxing and hanging out with our friends. Tom's parents Cyndi and Ken were amazing hosts, making our stay there so enjoyable. It was a great start to our much needed vacation.
We rendezvoused with my sister at the local In and Out Burger and headed south to Santa Cruz to go camping with my family. We had a great campsite at Sunset Beach and camped there for 4 nights. We played at the beach, went to the Boardwalk and Mystery Spot and walked around Capitola. We ended the trip with a toasty bonfire on the beach.
After a day of recovery and laundry, we headed to Matt's mom's house to visit with his side of the family. Since our laptop battery bit the dust we made a side trip to the Apple store today and came home with a macbook. It wasn't on my schedule of things to do, but ....
We'll spend a few more days here before we move on to our next adventure.
We have taken a ton of pictures and I have some great thoughts to share, but there is no time!