What a busy final week of our mission we have had! Sorting, packing, cleaning, visiting... Sunday through Thursday we had dinner appointments with special ward members who treated so wonderfully. All the meals were great, and so nice not to have to worry about cooking as I cleaned our kitchen. We even had squirrel gravy over biscuits for lunch with some friends on Wednesday. Friday night was a ward party -the decorations were amazing, food was great, we played some fun games, and sang a lot of karaoke. Our good friend and recent convert Katja and her family made a piñata in the shape of our van with a little Idaho license plate on it, and all the kids had fun destroying it - and telling us that now we couldn't leave! We were presented with a quilt signed with sweet messages from ward members. I would add pictures of the piñata and the quilt, but am typing this on Wayne's IPad in a motel, so the fun pictures will have to wait. Saturday we went to the DC Temple with our friends Janet and Johnny. We took Sonja, who Wayne baptized a year ago in May. A few other Ward members met us there, it was a long but awesome day. Perfect way to end our mission.
Wayne did an unbelievable job packing all our stuff. The pile of bags, boxes, musical equipment, books, mementos, plants, etc. looked way too large to fit in our van, but he did it. He has been having some back and leg pain the past few weeks and I'm sure this did not help but he is surviving. We went to our meetings in Petersburg this morning and then drove away - heading West. There were tears and hugs, bitter-sweet feelings. We drove about 8hours and are staying in a motel in Corydon, Indiana, tonight. Tomorrow we hope to make it to my sister's home in Arkansas and spend the day Tuesday with her. Then on to Lehi, Utah, to visit our daughter Karli and family. Saturday we will have a quick visit with our son Darin and his family in their new home in Logan, Utah, and try to catch up with our daughter Angie and her family as they vacation in Idaho Falls. Finally Saturday evening we hope to make it to our new home in Meridian, Idaho, to begin a new chapter of our life! Will reunite with the Dylan, Devin, and Julie families there. Can't wait to see our family, we've missed them. But our mission was wonderful (and hard), we made such good friends and had sweet experiences. I have a great companion - we've had a lot of fun working together and come to appreciate each other even more than we did before. Will add pictures next week, must rest now. I know that we have been watched over and guided by the Spirit these past two years. Can't believe it's over, it's been an amazing experience.