Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Move

As far as moves go, I can't complain. Sure, it was across the world and there were a lot of children involved, but we didn't have to pack out or "move" any of it, which is truly priceless.

The organizing/sorting/ditching/selling was enough to make me go insane. I will be forever grateful for the blessing of having movers do the heavy work. Thank you, U.S. government!

 They also put us up for the last 10 days in this awesome hotel across from this awesome park downtown, where we got to explore, eat out and rest our weary bones after each long day spent scrubbing, cleaning and scouring the house. We had amazing helpers (it's a cultural thing to help people clean their house during a move) that got us through that gruesome week. We sold the car a few days too early too and our rental didn't fit all of us, so it was pretty crazy. Last days of school, last days of work and celebrated Darren's bday and Mother's Day there, too. Check out that uuber-healthy breakfast in bed!

 The kids of course loved the empty weight room and pool. Despite the cooler weather, they took dares to see who could swim the longest in its icy depths - the prize was first pick of seats on our upcoming airplane rides. 

 It was pretty fun to splurge on some nice meals with the fam with our per diem money. Hotel eating and laundry can get tricky with that many tired, hungry bodies so we felt super spoiled.

Then of course, we were off on an early flight one last beautiful morning from Canberra. We crammed everything in those giant, trusty duffels again and shipped out. The taxi ride itself was a highlight for the kids and they hadn't flown since we arrived, so they could hardly sleep the night before. Will especially loved the limitless movies and video games at each seat. Who needs sleep? Airlines have really stepped it up these days.

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Farewells

We bid farewell to our lovely neighborhood with a few last hikes and bike rides. Des finally hit the flying squirrel solo, Sum mastered her bike, we all hiked Mt. Taylor and were granted a few last epic sunsets.

We bid farewell to our beloved school with one last Catholic holiday to celebrate.

And some sad and tearful farewells to our cute, cute friends.

Annie was lucky enough to squeeze in one last sleepover party for her birthday.

And Kenna's friends surprised her with a huge goodbye bash at a nearby gymnasium. I even got a fun girls night out with my buds at the new chocolate restaurant with a late night chick flick afterwards.

We have been so blessed with friendships here.

A fond farewell to our house.

And many beautiful church/neighborhood friends we will cherish forever.

Kenna got to accompany a song the last day of Primary
some of our fun Faith in God group
our awesome Sister Missionaries
I'll tell ya what, that week held some of the hardest goodbyes I've had the misfortune of ever having to experience. But hallelujah for the internet and Skype to keep us semi-in-touch from afar.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Family Pictures

I've already posted my feelings about family pictures. But it had to happen before we left that glorious country. We had our trusty trade-off agreement with the Sorensons and decided what better place than the heart of the capital city? Up on a hill, at the top of the National Arboretum one randomly spontaneous evening, we raced the sun and tried to capture our family dynamic.

 It was a bit overcast and windy, but we got a few shots with us all looking at the camera - huzzah!

 I love that we got one with Lake Burley-Griffin in the background. Lotta memories there.