And ice cream withdrawal is a real thing. And I some howoverlooked packing anything Haribo. Or thinking to bring cheese.
no cheese, no candy, no ice cream, no take-out.
reality sets in.
Miss Nora is struggling to adjust to the hot hot nights and the time change and the food and is whiny and tired.
But we are home, and there are no rats in the house, and aside from the internet giving us some trouble, everything is golden and it is good to SIT and have coffee and watch our children laugh and play and be home. To realize that the great PUSH is over. To watch the girls at peace, knowing where their crayons are and sleeping in their beds and running with their friends.
To hold Micheline's hand. To laugh at Granny's squeal, to clasp Edlin, to catch up with Junel, to touch Magloire's wrinkled arm and see that he is well. Even to already have guests in our home (from the UK!), and to have Lily rejoice that she is no longer the guest, but the hostess.
Starting to change course back into a very different life then the last seven weeks has me praising the Lord for them, because within them were many many beautiful things.
a magnet picture of our family on a fridge that wasn't our prayer card
a big beautiful clean cool hotel room with dear friends right when we needed it
the joy of the girls at Lego land
a major EBS funding need MET on day three
an awesome first-time VBS for Lily and Sofie
a final meal at our all-time favorite closing restaurant
sweet corn and berries and bbq and good coffee and someone. else. cooking.
the chance to go through a life's worth of memories, and to say good-bye
unexpected friends coming to churches not their own to hear us speak and to love us
church and lunch with dear friends, an ice cream cake and sweet laughter
a day at the zoo
help and time with a dear old friend
time with friends of Lily and Sofie's
sweet time with my grandma
precious time with my sister
the chance to finally get to know my nieces and nephew better
cousin play days
an awesome night with newish friends at a fantastic play of "Samson"
watching the girls watching it
humbling chances to see the Spirit speak through Matt around the US
truly transformed by one of his sermons on the Pentecost
an unmerited, overgenerous week at the beach, for family vacation
the peace and cooking and love of Nana's house!
Matt getting to go to a Phillies game
the girls loving catching fish
an awesome day with family at Sesame Place, enjoying our children together
a "dream come true" seeing Jim Gaffigan with dear friends!
dozens of homes generously opened to us
precious moments with our daughters, throughout
celebrating Nora's birthday!
precious date night with my sister full of memories and laughter and dreams
a wonderful evening with friends from high school
getting to watch some of the Olympics
meeting precious new-ish babies!
the hospitality of friends who know us well and make their home our home
missions breakfasts and dinners and the many hands held and stories shared
watching our girls overcome fears and be met by their God
chances to share Jesus with children and friends and strangers
being met just how and just when needed
safe roads and safe return...such a miracle with all these miles!
healthy girls at good doctors visits
doctors and dentists and the ability to see them!
unexpected friendships in unexpected places
reminders of what He has done, who He has been
a doctor going w-a-y out of her way to hook us up with emergency meds for the year
there were people who bought me ice cream.
a sweet friend who actually helped pay for me to spend time with her
generous, so-blessed-us people who took us out to brunch, out to lunch, out to dinner
the chance to do something FUN with our Haiti neighbors
being able to call and text friends and family freely
the ability to get a few new things for the year
a meaningful tea party
a meaningful tea party
help from dear friends and total strangers
encouragement, from many, in many ways
conviction, calling, His sweet peace
every. single. need. met.
even those we never knew we'd have
Beautiful things. I told you there were lots, and there are many more. I am of a grateful heart, looking to this next year with peace because He Is beautiful things.