One week ago today we were scurrying around, packing bags and yelling, "Do not forget your passport!"
One week ago tomorrow we were squeezing Derek and Caleb and telling them how much we'd missed them (although words can't really do justice to those kinds of feelings) and marveling at how tall they've grown and how perfect their French accents have become.
And then, one week ago Monday we were wishing we could stay a day longer instead of having to drop them off for school and rushing to the ferry ourselves. Every time we visit, it's impossibly difficult to leave them, but it does help to know that we'll certainly see them again. And between hugging them hello and kissing them good-bye, we celebrated Caleb's 6th birthday, Derek's 8th, and their Daddy's 31st with singing and cake and and a pile of presents. We put together Legos and lit off a vinegar-and-baking-soda-powered rocket. We laughed at hearing the word 'Roger' repeated 17,000 times while they played with their new walkie-talkies. And my Auntie heart almost burst at watching the two of them and their Uncle Jan wrangle a bunch of pesky ghosts with a makeshift tripod-turned-ghost-buster and immense amounts of enthusiasm.
Until next time, you precious nephews..
One thing I'm grateful for is this: If they have to live so very far away, at least they're in a place where the ocean is right at their fingertips and the sky is is so beautiful, it's almost unbelievable. Maybe as they grow, they'll find as much awe and peace in these parts of God's creation as I do.
This one is being framed pronto: