It’s hard to believe that we’ve been in Beaumont a week and a day! Where has the time gone? It seems like forever since I updated last. It’s been some of the absolute busiest few weeks of my life. But it’s been good — God is so faithful!
I want to go back and update about everything that’s happened over the past two weeks. I think that I’ve experienced about a million and three emotions. I think I’ll start at our last Saturday in Ada…
Saturday, Sept. 25
I’m pretty sure we packed and did a few things around the house during the day. And then that night, Danna and Jonathan came over. We ate dinner and then played lots of games. We played this card game that they taught us (I can’t remember the name). You play with partners, and Danna and I definitely won! Our secret sign was great (You have to get 4 of a kind and then do a secret sign. You win the round when your partner sees your sign and says that you have all 4. But the other people can’t find out what your sign is.)
Sunday, Sept. 26
Even though it was our last Sunday at our church in Ada, it really didn’t feel like it. I think that since I knew we still had another Wednesday night with everyone, I didn’t let myself think of it as a “last”. I think the weather also had something to do with us not being upset — it’s really hard to be upset with sunny, 63 degree weather! We had a great time with our church family that morning, and then went to my Meme and Pawpaw’s house for lunch.
When I was little and we lived in Ada (there were 6 years that we lived out of town, but the rest of the time my family lived in Ada), we ate Sunday lunch with Meme and Pawpaw every week. Meme is an excellent cook and we all loved getting to enjoy her food and spend time together as a family. When my family moved to OKC two summers ago, it became just the four of us at lunch. Even though there were half the number of people at lunch, Meme still cooked a huge meal with dessert every week. Michael and I loved being able to go over there and spend time visiting and eating together.
For our last Sunday lunch, Meme fixed steak, potatoes, and lots of yummy stuff to go with it.
Pawpaw grilled the steak:
And Michael, Meme, and I set the table:
The food was delicious (as always)!
And for dessert, we had Chocolate Pie!
I only got teary when Meme and Pawpaw gave us this beautiful going-away gift. It didn’t help that Meme got choked up when I was opening it.
The side really got me. The saying fit perfectly.
After lunch, I helped Meme look for some Christmas presents online (I introduced her to etsy!) while the guys took care of the dishes. We hung around for a long time and just enjoyed our last Sunday afternoon together.
Monday, Sept. 27
On Monday, we went to OKC to run some errands (picking up Dr. records and things) and then had birthday dinner for my brother. His bday isn’t until October 11, but we celebrated early so we could be there. As always, it was a great night with my fam!
Tuesday, Sept. 28
We went shopping for some new work clothes in Norman since I can now dress down and Michael needs to dress up. We finished packing some things and then a few of our friends from the BSU came over. Kristin left with our creepy “Dirty Santa/White Elephant” gift from last Christmas. She named him Michael. I’ll miss my Tuesday nights with these girls!
Wednesday, Sept. 29
On Wednesday we worked on packing. Then that night we had our last time at church. Our church gave us a “sandwich send-off” and we had a great time visiting with everyone during dinner. We ate with some of our older friends, and it was such a blessing! We felt so, so blessed and loved by all of the hugs and gifts and well wishes. We’re so thankful for our church family there!
When we went upstairs to the youth area, our students had a special surprise planned for us:
All of “our kids” who are in band brought their instruments and played a song for us. It was so sweet and thoughtful of them! A lot of them are in band, and it meant so much to us to know that they planned something special like this for us. They also gave us a DVD with memories from our time there and made us promise to now watch it until after we moved. They’re SUCH great students and we love them a ton!
There were “personal space invasions” (group hugs) and then we played “Ninja” and “Mafia” — two of our group’s favorite games.
We’d invited all of the parents to come up after youth time so that we could do something special for all of the students. At Pine Cove Camps, the counselors give each of their campers “Character Quality Certificates” or CQs at the end of the week. They’re a way to affirm the campers by telling them qualities that we see in them. When we found out that we were leaving, we decided that we wanted to do CQs for our students. It was such a blessing to be able to bring each of our kids up and tell them the qualities that we see in them and tell them that we’re proud of them. They really are incredible students, and we’re so thankful that God has allowed us to serve with them over the past two and a third years. They each hold a very special place in our hearts.
Thursday, Sept. 30
Thursday was a super busy day. We had to load the moving van that night, and we had a lot of things that we wanted to do before then. I wanted to visit my Granny (Meme’s mom) one last time before we moved. She recognized me immediately, which meant a lot to me. The rest of the time she kept us very entertained with all of her different stories. When we left, she kept reminding me to love Jesus and telling us that she loves us. I’ve thankful to have a great-grandma who has lived this long.
After that, we had to run some errands in town to take care of some last-minute things like shot records and insurance. It felt like we had WAY to much to do in the time we had left. But somehow we got it all done! We had some friends come over at different times to tell us goodbye one last time, which was great. And then we had a friend from church, a friend from the BSU, and my grandpa come and help us load the moving van. After a little bit, my parents and Emily came to help us finish up. I’m SOOO thankful for all of the help that we had!
Michael and P came over later that night. He’s so stinking cute! We had a great time visiting and passing baby P around.
Thankfully my brother is buying our couches so we had somewhere to sit!
He fell asleep while I was holding him. Sleeping babies are just about the sweetest things ever.
We’re going to miss Michael, Daron, and P! I’m glad we got to spend such a long time with them before we left. And thank goodness for iChat — we’ll still be able to watch him grow up and visit with Michael and Daron.
We went and told Danna and Jonathan bye at their new house. I’m so glad we got to see their new place before we left (They’d just got the keys that day). It was tough saying goodbye to our friends! That night we went to my Meme and Pawpaw’s house to spend the night. Michael, Emily, and I stayed in “the little house” so we could sleep in the next morning (we’d been at our house late, cleaning).
Friday, Oct. 1
Moving Day! My parents got up early and took the van and one of their cars down. The plan was to meet up with them a little later since we’d be able to drive faster. We got up and spent some time with Marcos and Meme and Pawpaw before we had to leave. We love them SO much! I’m so thankful that we were able to be this close to them over these past few years. We met up with Lane at the Donut Shop and then headed down to Texas.
Emily kept me company, and we followed Michael. We had fun jamming out to some girly tunes like “Taylor, the Latte Boy“, “Merry Happy“, and “A Walk to Remember” soundtrack — oh, and some good-ol’ “Elton John’s Greatest Hits“.
It was a great drive except for the fact that there were TONS of slow drivers on the road! There was one stretch where I got behind someone going fifteen under and there was absolutely no way I could pass them. Every single time we weren’t on a highway, we were behind someone slow. So needless to say, we didn’t catch up to my parents.
They dropped the van off at the apartment complex and then went to check in to their hotel. We arrived about 30 minutes later. We were excited to be at our new apartment!
We took a few pictures of our view before we went in. Our apartment is on the second floor (with no 3rd floor above us), with our windows facing west. This is from the top of our steps:
Looking out the little window to the right of the stairs:
Back over the stairs:
Woo-Hoo! We were really exicited!
Our living room. We love the Bay Windows!
And our little bitty kitchen:
Michael’s parents came a few minutes after we got there, and we all went to the club house. One of the staff members from our church was waiting to greet us outside our apartment when we got back. It was so sweet and thoughtful to have someone there to greet us!
We decided to start unloading one of the cars, and my cousin Paul and his wife, Liz, pulled up. It was SO great to see them! We’re really excited that we’re only going to be about an hour and a half from them. My parents came back to the apartment, and shortly afterward one of the families from our new church came with dinner. It was so, so sweet of them!
More and more people showed up to help us move. We didn’t count, but there had to have been at least 20 people from the church that came to help. We were blown away by all of their kindness and generosity! Everyone was so great and welcoming. It literally took less than 45 minutes to unload everything! It meant SO much to us for our new church to reach out and help us like this. I’d forgotten to take pictures of everyone helping us, so I snapped a few after the work was finished.
When all of our new church friends left, we sat down and ate dinner. It was SUCH a blessing to not have to worry about what we were going to fix! Michael’s parents, my parents and sister, and Paul and Liz stayed. It was good to be able to relax after such a long day (even if we did have to sit on the floor).
We decided to not even unpack anything that night — we’d have plenty of time in the morning. We were exhausted. But we were SOO thankful to have such wonderful friends and family to help us. We went to bed feeling very blessed.
It’s getting late, so I’ll update about our first week in Beaumont in the next couple of days. I will say one thing, though. There have been LOTS and lots of pumpkins.
Thank you all SO much for your thoughts and prayers over these past few weeks. They’ve meant so much to us. We’re so thankful that God has provided such amazing friends and family for us. We love you!