Thursday, August 14, 2008

Saying Hello...Saying Goodbye

As you can see, I started this post a while ago and I'm just now getting back to it. First of all it was pretty emotional. I was working on it and started crying in my proofreading. Then the girls came over to see what was wrong and when they read it they started crying too. Anyway, we're doing a little better, but that doesn't mean we don't miss Joel because we surely do! Ok, here's the origional post...

We could hardly wait to get to the airport to get our Kayla last night. It was a happy reunion as you can tell from the pictures. Her plane was right on time and all went smooth except for one glitch. We discovered that one of her bags is in luggage land. This bag has all her photos from her trip so please be praying that it is found. Update: It was delivered to our house the next night :0)

After we left the airport we drove around Tulsa looking for a place to eat. We ended up at The Cheesecake Factory which was an excellent choice. The food was wonderful, but what was even more wonderful was that we all were finally together again. Meal time at night is really important to us and if at all possible we really try to be together.

The little ones pretty much haven't let her out of their sight. As I type this they are both perched on her lap listening to her read a story. They really missed her. We all did.

This morning Joel moved his stack of stuff out to Ozark Christian College. I'm so very thankful that it's very close by and I can lure him home with food or the prospect of a free laundry. We're so excited for him and his next Grand Adventure. He came to me last night and hugged me tightly and talked about those Grand Adventures. It's been our goal to make life with our kids as grand as possible no matter what the circumstances.

So, before I start bawling (oops too late...) here are some pictures from our last 24 hours.

Until the next Grand Adventure,
Yvonne and Crew

p.s. The picture of Joel's room is to show that he actually did have a floor. I didn't see it much ;0)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Welcome Home Kayla

We are just a few hours away from seeing our Kayla again. It's so emotional I can't even describe it. I do know that the anticipation is better than Christmas! We leave at 2:00 today to go to the airport. I have tons of stuff I should be doing, but can't focus on any of it so I'm blogging :0) A couple nights ago we were talking about what we could do to welcome her home and I said, "We should fill her room with balloons." I was really only half kidding, but the idea stuck so for two nights we've been blowing up balloons and passing out...blowing up balloons and passing out. Ok, not really. We did have some manual pumps, so everyone but me used them. (OK, I take that back...I see that Noelle used the old fashioned method as well.) They hurt my wimpy arm. I opted to blow them up the old fashioned way. Here's some pictures of the process. I will get more pictures at the airport.

The funny thing is that we've had to do it when the little kids are asleep so they won't spill the beans to their sister when we go and get her. They keep hearing mysterious POP noises every now and then and they are so baffled. I guess we were overzealous and filled a few of them too full. It's hard to fill a room with balloons and we were just trying to take up as much space as possible with each one LOL!

Below is Alyssa Stewart that came to help one of the nights.

Until the Next Grand Adventure,
Yvonne and Crew

Friday, August 1, 2008

"Lots of Love"

Angie has been bugging me all summer that she wants to do the "lots of love" (Locks of Love) thing that Noelle did. Poor kid. Her hair is sooo thick that it's extremely hot. I finally gave in and let her. I do miss her pretty long hair, but now she has cute short, curly hair. It'll take me some getting used to, but she already loves it. I'm sure our morning brushings are going to be less tearful and I do look forward to that.

We got Angie's first grade teacher's letter in the mail yesterday and both Jim and I are thrilled that she's the most sought after teacher in that building. It's a double bonus because she and her family go to our church. I'm pretty sure that the two deaf kids that were in her class last year will be in her same class again which is awesome. Angie learned so much sign language just from watching last year.

Only 12 more days until Kayla comes home. We're excited about that. I think she's really going to miss it there though. She's had wonderful people to be with. The last I talked to her they were gearing up for another typhoon. Wonder what those are like? Not everyone can say they've been through one!

Joel's burns are healing nicely. He's putting in some very long days and he thinks it's sad that a 19 year old is ready for bed by 9:00! He's moving to Ozark Christian College in two weeks (the day after Kayla gets home) and will be able to plunk down the entire amount for the first semester just from scholarships and hard work this summer. We're going to miss him, but at least he's only 15 minutes away and I have perks like home cooked food and a washer and dryer.

Noelle is gone this week to Chicago working with a group from Christ's Church on an inner city mission. I've only gotten to talk to her a couple of times, but it sounds like the group is doing well.

Ryan...well, we're still working on the potty training thing. Please be praying. He's actually showing some interest in trying and doesn't fight me when I suggest we go in for him to try. Maybe it's the mini marshmallows I bought as a bribe? Man, I've tried everything that's for sure.

Jim and I are still busy at our work stuff. We've had several kids come through here this summer on anywhere from overnight to a week and from 7 months to 15 years. Our kids don't even act surprised anymore when they come home and there's another kid or two here! I have opted out of having any come for a couple of weeks simply because I'm getting ready to do a garage sale and that entails a lot of work. Sometimes they make it easy to say no when they say things like, "Would you be able to take a mouthy 16 year old girl for two weeks?" Um...NO sorry. My life is crazy enough.

Well, that's us at the moment. We're sending you lots of love!

Until the next grand adventure,
Yvonne and crew