We had a great time with our neighbors the other night! The wife, "Leigh" came by about 5:30 while we were still getting things ready, and my girls were SO excited to see her. Like, amazingly excited. Perhaps even unreasonably excited! They started running around like crazy children and acting like they had just received an injection of pure caffeine or something. So the next hour was spent talking with Leigh over the exuberance of my children, while occasionally having to take them aside for correction. "No, you may not pull the cushions off the couch! Do not throw puzzle pieces under the chair! Stop running up and down the hallway! SETTLE DOWN!" Let's just say nobody was bored!
Leigh's husband came over after he was done with work and we all sat down to enjoy a fabulous dinner cooked by my helper Lou. When we were in Hong Kong, Lou and Leigh spent several days together, just hanging out and talking. Their close relationship was evident in the ease and comfortableness of the evening. We truly had a fun time chatting and at times there were several conversations going on--John with the husband, me with Lou and Leigh, and Clara Anne telling stories to herself using her food as characters while Chloe just focused on eating. Christin didn't want to sleep either with all of the excitement so I was holding her at the table. It was a lively time!
We had a great discussion after supper, too. Leigh especially was so interested to hear what we had to say. She has really been thinking and had a lot of questions. In a situation like that I always wish my Asianese could go a level deeper. Thankfully in those moments I could look to Lou for help and her "interpretation" of my lack of grammar or choice of vocab. She's a wonderful help, and more and more knows what I mean or want to say even when I can't quite get it out!
In many ways, Wednesday was a day I've been looking forward to for a long time. An outsider looking in wouldn't know how it was special, but let me tell you how the day went. In the morning, Clara Anne went to kindergarten. While she was gone, I exercised, showered, then read books to Chloe. Some friends dropped by for about an hour. We had a yummy lunch, followed by a walk over to John's office, also within this apartment complex. We stopped along the way to admire the lily pads, water spiders, fish, and dragonflies at the stream. After a brief visit with Daddy the girls and I came back for rest time and playtime with Christin. Our neighbors came over for dinner and discussion and stayed until 10pm.
So what's so unusual or ideal about that?
Simply this: for many months this is the kind of life we've been hoping to have. A settled-in, good-family-routine, ready-to-work sort of life. But it seems that one transition after another has always intruded, and it's taken a lot of work to get to this point. But midway through my Wednesday, I thought, "This is what I want my life to look like in the next year! I hope this day will be "typical" for me in the future!" It's just that for almost the last year or so, "typical" has not existed for our family! So, here's hoping and praying that these kinds of days will be the norm and routine soon enough.
With that being said, we're off to a meeting in another city! Can you believe it? I think this will be the last travel for awhile, though. We leave on Monday and will be back next Friday. I have new pictures and other news to post, but it may have to wait until we get home. Blogger would not take my pics tonight so I'll have to try again, argh. (They're great pics, too, from a recent professional photo session with all three girls!)
Until next time . . .