Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A BitterSweet Weekend

***Warning: Long post with lots of pictures...***

It was part bitter.
And part sweet.

It had it's good.
And it had it's bad.

This last weekend, was definitely a busy one. With our move and Halloween all being fit into a few days, all I can say is I'm so proud of all of us...the girls, Spencer, Brian and me...for being so flexible and adaptable. Yup, that's right, I'm proud of all of us, including me. I'm not embarrassed to brag! Cuz I recognize that we've had a lot of change the past few years, mostly the past few months, and I recognize that it could have been a very stressful and upsetting time. We have handled it with patience, style and flair. I can't say we didn't have our moments, but for the most part we did really well. I'm so proud of my family.

So, what were the bittersweet parts? I'll tell you below...And ya, there were definitely bitter and sweet parts to each.

#1 Bitter Part-The girls had to again say goodbye to their friends, teachers, office staff (nurse, front desk secretary, principal), etc., all people who were adamant about telling me how much they were going to be missed. And not just the "blowing smoke at you" type of comments...they were truly sincere. Tears were shed by more than a few, including two of the teachers. But you know? The girls handled it so well. They got choked up a few times, but other than that they just went with the flow. They are seriously growing up. And I think I was just as upset having them leave this school. I can't tell you how personal and family-like everyone was, but their teacher was good enough that she has reinstilled how good school can be. She was seriously amazing. I think I've told you about her before. There are pictures below. The sweet part of it-The girls have decided to split themselves up into different classes and try being apart. This last school didn't have that option because they only had one 5th grade class. At the new school there are 4. I think now is a good time and am proud of them for doing this, because in Middle School, they won't have the option of having all the same classes, and it's good they learn to be apart whilst they're still so young.

The girls with their teacher, Ms. Burrus. These were taken on Friday, Oct. 30 so everyone was dressed up for Halloween. Can you tell who Ms. Burrus was dressed up as?

Ms. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus series'. That's some pretty amazing hair, huh? It's all her own.

#2 Bitter-Having to pack up and move...again...we're all really tired of packing and unpacking. But the sweet part about this is that we moved into a beautiful home, and hopefully will be here the duration of our stay! I can't wait to show you pictures. I may show them in spurts (hate that word...but so appropriate right here) as each room becomes finished or decorated.

3. Bitter- How come no one complains more about unpacking? You really should! You would totally have every right. Allow me to then! It really sucks! It takes so long, there are so many messes, you can't find any clothes, toiletries, food or medicine, so you are literally ripping open boxes and suitcases to make some sort of semblance. Trying to find sheets and blankets to make beds the first night was pretty comical. We had a HUGE mound, taller than the girls, of clothes and shoes and bedding, that the movers had started unloading out of our boxes. We quickly put a stop to that idea after we walked into our kitchen and every bit of floor and counter space was piled high with cans, dishes and...kitchen stuff. There was nowhere to walk. We told them we'd unpack it ourselves. The sweet part? We have all of our "stuff". There were so many things we were regretting not bringing with us that we soon needed...winter coats, warmer clothes, our own beds, more clothes, real pots and pans, etc. I've been opening boxes like it's Christmas and becoming surprised at how much I missed certain things, as well as forgot I had certain things...but SO thankful for our life back. I can't wait to be somewhat settled.

4. Bitter-Having different utilities than where you were...more specifically...the internet. We were out of the internet for the whole weekend. Mostly I don't rely on it 100% of the day, but nowadays it's my only connection to the states. And because our telephone relies on the internet (it's an internet phone), I went to bed pretty deflated on Sunday night when for the last time I had tried to make unsuccessful phone calls. I felt pretty cut off. The sweet part? Is there one? haha. I'm just happy to be in our house.

Some other fun things about this weekend...

We went trick or treating, to a Fall Festival (games, etc.), to another trunk or treat on base and the girls went to a sock hop at their school all dressed up in their costumes. We also attended our new ward's Halloween Party to meet the people we'll be going to church with for the next few years, and we attended their Sunday meeting as well. The girls were a little nervous again (they have changed church classes so many times), but like always they come out smiling and positive about how much they love their teacher and class and Primary President.

We also had our washing and dryer, refrigerator, wardrobes and two twin beds delivered. The government housing office lends you things if you don't have them, some long term, others not so much. The only thing we have to return are the girls' beds. We have 3 months to find some. They have their own rooms now so we need to find two, instead of one...can you tell it's different for me with them deciding to be so separate. It's all great. Just different. And yes, now we have an American size fridge for us to put all our BIG American items in it. haha.

Brian bought me the most amazing rug as an early Christmas present. (We have all hardwood floors). I had seen it at a furniture store and couldn't get it out of my mind. As soon as I told him that when I imagined living in this house I could only imagine that rug, he surprised me and had it all set up when I came to the house for the first time. I LOVE going into that room and just taking a gander. I really hope we can keep it really clean and in nice condition.

Some pictures from the weekend:

The Character Book Parade
To promote reading, each kid was asked to dress up in a costume that was a character from a book. We didn't know this until after we had bought our costumes. Good thing Xanthe was dressed as Elphaba from Wicked . And you KNOW we totally justified Xoe's costume because the movie Grease was made into a book after the movie. hehe. They were also supposed to carry around a copy of the book, but since we had so many last minute costume issues, and it was hard enough finding ANY costume for the girls (let alone find an old book from the already limited selection we have now), they let them walk without a copy of their book. The parade led around the school, passed the high school where the highschoolers could come watch (the school is right next door) and down a few streets of the base housing.

Walking in the Character Book Parade.

The Sock Hop
After the parade, the school put on a really fun Sock Hop with games, dancing, activities, food, etc. to celebrate Halloween. I didn't go cuz I was on my way to Wiesbaden to help Brian with the movers who were delivering that same day. Thanks Kathy for taking pictures and entertaining the girls the rest of the night at the Trunk or Treat.

The girls were each chosen, with 3 other kids, to make publicity posters. The girls worked on it all weekend before and did a pretty good job, don't you think? The school put theirs on the front door and front bulletin board. Check out the 3-D jukebox and popcorn on the first picture.

Let's see...
I think that's it. There really is so much more, but this post is already long enough! I'll just end by telling you that the girls went to their new school today. We took them yesterday to pick out a sheet set for their beds as sort of a reward for being so good with all the changes going on. We also went to the clothing store and let them pick out something to wear today. (There wasn't much at the American store. I never knew how much I would miss Target, Old Navy, Children's Place & The Gap.)

I can't wait to hear all about their day at school. I'll keep you posted.


Nan said...

That was SO much fun to read...Thank you! Sound like life has been in a bit of an upheavel (sp) but in the long run will be better. Thanks for the post...

Vanessa said...

I've been thinking about you guys! I hadn't seen a post in a while, well you were so busy!!! I'm glad life will be settled for a while now, even though I continue to be jealous, I love those kind of adventures, I wish we could have one... I got to send Russ to Germany! :) Loved the post!

Randi said...

Your family is so amazing. I am excited for things to feel normal to you all as you get settled into your new town, house, lives.

stacy said...

what an adventure! you guys are so amazing!