Next time I suggest this someone quickly remind me that traveling with four children for five weeks is INSANE. It has been everything fun and exhausting. We started the week with a trip to Wisconsin for the fourth of July, which since I was a kid has been one of my fondest memories.
This was followed by a week at a cabin, with my mom, grandma, sister and her family, my brother who I have not seen in about eight years and my cousin and his family. That is right, eighteen people in a cabin for a week, there was so much fun had by all. A lot of chaotic fun. We had our own summer Olympics, adults vs. kids, miniature golf, boating, fishing and lots of ice cream. Pretty much this whole vacation has involved a lot of ice cream.
The week after was spent in the Chicago area. We traveled up to Kenosha to visit friends and had sleepovers and lots of catching up. We swam, roller skated, played and wore ourselves out.
The week following is the week we are in. A visit with my sister in Michigan. We have been catching up with cousins. And plans are the zoo, swimming, an indoor play park, roller skating and trampoline jumping. We met a new friend that is adopting a little boy from the same orphanage as us in Bulgaria. And we are planning a trip to Canada to visit friends we have not seen in years, it seems, maybe one year, but it seems like more.
We will then head back to Wisconsin until we end up back in Chicago and finally get to head home. And if you notice none of these lists of things involve sleep. Which means that there is not a lot of that going on.
I have learned things about my children this trip. Things like Verity is apparently an extrovert and thrives in new environments, she has made so many friends and is SO much fun. She is brave and loves to try whatever is new. But she also misses her home and her bed and her friends. I have learned that Anya in the midst of heartbreak is strong. Two of her best friends in Arkansas are moving before we get back. What are the odds, two dear friends, whose dads have taken jobs in Minnesota and Montana, and both will be gone before we get home. There have been tears, but also, Anya encouraged her friend who is so afraid of moving with how many friends she will make and that things will be okay, even when she is so sad to lose her friends. David has discovered a love of fishing and has turned into a fish himself, swimming every chance he gets and facing many of his fears. And Karis has worked everything in her to control herself. Her biggest struggle, and she has done a great job. They have all risen to the occasion.
All the while Nathan is working on a film, around 12 hours a day, plus prep work, and that means sometimes 15 hours with set up and take down and meetings, and he is exhausted. The film is going well and I am so proud of him and all that he does.
But when the time comes we will be ready to go home!
On the adoption front, things continue to move. Our appointment for biometrics is set, for the week we get back to Arkansas. We have something extra to do to get our apostille done in Arkansas, so our forms were sent back and we are going to have to get that done, but I found out we can drive them down and get them done that day, so I think we will do that also the week we get back. So things continue to progress, but it will be easier once we are actually in Arkansas.