On Mother's Day my dad emailed us to tell us that they would be coming home from their mission three months early because my mom had a growth of some sort that needed to be looked at. They had sent pictures of it to their doctors in the U.S. and they figured it to be some sort of Sarcoma, but the closest place that had good medical facilities was in Australia, so they were told they might as well come home as go there.
Mom with the Smiths (the senior couple the served with):
This sent us into a scramble because their house needed some serious attention before they arrived home! They were going to fly in on Friday at 9:16 Boise time, so we all got to the house as quickly as we could. Shawn took me over on Tuesday after school (we wanted to be able to ride home all together later). The local family had already gotten a start on things the night before for family home evening.
Leslie came from Washington, and Ivy drove over from the other side of the state. We all worked our tails off painting and repairing and cleaning and it ended up being so much fun to me! EVERYONE that was there contributed so much of their time and resources and it made me so proud of the family that I come from. Everyone came whenever they could squeeze in some time; the ladies were in and out all day---plus my brother Nathan, who took time off work to make a lot of repairs- and then more of the men came at night and whipped the property into shape!
I also found myself thinking about how much I love my sister-in-laws! I am amazed that I didn't even grow up with these ladies, yet they cared just as much about the house and my parents as I do. They feel just like siblings and I love them so much!
This was at the airport - not the best picture, but I wanted to include a picture of Leslie!:
Sometimes it was still pretty crazy, which either had to be really annoying or very entertaining for the other travelers:
Madeline and Sadie:
Nathan, Pace and Shawn:
We looked out windows and through the closed doors!
Pace on Josiah, who is beside Nolan:
The anticipation was HIGH.....and then we found out the flight had been delayed and wouldn't get in until 10:30ish. We waited some more....
Aunt Ellen and Nathan:
(It's really dumb that I don't have pictures of everyone that was there! I am lucky I have these, really. My sister Katie couldn't make it to the airport and texted me to get pictures for her or I would have forgotten entirely, I was so excited. )
And then - finally- there they came! Words can't express the emotions that I felt - It was one of the happiest moments of my life!
l-r: Nolan, David Kerns, Mikelle, Josiah hugging mom, Abram, Jonathan and Kami:
Abe already sharing something amazing like, "Did you know I can do cartwheels now?":
When hugs all around were complete, we headed back to Oregon, making for a very late night!
The next morning dad showed us all of his treasures and let all the grandkids pick out five shells apiece and also some coinage from Vanuatu:
Mom showed us the native dresses that were bestowed on her - I will have to get a picture and explain more about those later!
And we watched a lot of videos.
And everything felt so complete and happy!