There’s a quote in the movie Sweet Home Alabama (don’t judge me, I love Reese Witherspoon) where she’s talking about how great her life is at home, but she says, “But then I come down here… and this fits too.” That’s how it feels to be back “home” in Saudi. We had a great three month summer vacation back in Boise visiting friends, hanging in McCall, snuck in a trip to Yellowstone with the family, and the kids got to do a ton of fun summer camps. The trip back here was long, but the kids did as well as we could hope for. Since we’ve been back, we’ve had our wonderful community here step up. Neighbors have taken the kids so we could regroup, brought coffee to help us stay awake, and I’ve even had an offer from a friend to come over and hold my eyelids open (now that’s a good friend!)
The jet lag this trip has been horrible (which explains why I have time to catch up on my blog… the kids are all still asleep at 9:15am!).
It’s still hard to believe that we got three whole months in Idaho. Part of the wonderful benefit to working here is the vacation – Mark gets 10 weeks off his first year, and ended up carrying 2 weeks from last year. So he has 3 months off work! He is also home almost every night of the week. Our home life has so vastly improved from when we were both flying, it’s just amazing.
It’s starting to feel more like home here since we got our shipment from the States. That was a wonderful day, for sure.
We had been surviving on Aramco supplied housewares, donations from friends and neighbors, and sparse furniture from 1972. Our downstairs is entirely covered in white tile and the walls were all stark white. It felt very empty, and tended to echo – which is not the “homey-ist” feeling in the world. So, March 18th, three and a half months after we moved in, we got all of our stuff. And that has helped A LOT. Rugs, furniture, clothes… I have never been so happy to see my salad spinner, have more than 4 forks, and have a real couch to sit on. And baking dishes! Ahhhhhh…..
So on this last trip home we gathered the few things we were still missing. Mark completed our few painting projects that were needing to be done while the family was gone, so we are finally really feeling settled. Most Aramcons told us that it would take a year to get moved in, which seemed crazy. But given the shipping date, the vacations, and the incredible amount of time and energy that it takes to get anything done in this country – it’s turned out to be about right. We have some pictures that need to be framed and I think by the time we find a framing place, get the timing right so that we miss prayer time, nap time, and the store owner decides to be open, it will be completed right around our one year anniversary 😉
Overall, we just feel amazingly blessed to have had the opportunity to spend such quality time with our family and friends. We saw almost all of my side of the family on this trip, and will hit up the Todds on our next trip State-side. So ya, it was a blast of a summer. But, …this fits too.