Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Back in the USA

God gave safety in all our travels, for which we are so grateful!  After our arrival to the US via LAX airport, the Richards spent some time in California with Houghton's family, but I flew straight up to my home state of Montana.  I got in about midnight to Billings, which is about 2 hours drive from my hometown, so I stayed in a hotel overnight and my parents came up to get me the next morning.
 Seeing my parents for the first time in 1 1/2 years.
 We went to lunch and my aunt Libby, uncle Mike, and my grandparents were there to surprise me!  They live in another state so it was quite unexpected for them to be there.
 With my dad's parents.
 What a fun surprise!
 My mom went all out decorating for our return.  She even had a giant welcome home sign in the driveway!
 We had a hail storm (with just little hail thankfully) a few days after I had come to Montana.

 After I'd been back a week or so, I flew to Boise, ID to meet the Richards there for some presentations (which I forgot to take pictures of!!).  We had 2 church meetings and 3 home groups, all of which were very well attended, which we were pleased with.  Thanks to all you great Boise friends who were so welcoming to us and have faithfully held the ropes for us while we've been in Vanuatu!  After just under a week there, I drove with the Richards back to Montana and we met my parents in Billings again.  (Above:  Gretchen and my dad)
 My mom reuniting with her granddaughters - Addy and Gwen.
 Playing "pin the girl on Laura" or something...  :)
 Hanging out with grandpa.
Playing at a store in Billings.
 They even have a ferris wheel - crazy.  My mom took the 3 older kids on a ride.
 Looking at all the stuffed animals.
Playing on a fake jeep.
 Our main sending church raised extra money for us to help with our travels and time back in the US.  We are so grateful for their faithfulness and generosity to us and the ministry in Vanuatu!
People are also so practical in giving as well.  We had a friend give us the meat from one of her cows and some other friends cover our eye appointments and glasses!  What great evidences of the body of Christ at work!
 My mom decided since we'd missed 4 Christmases together, she'd make up for them in one go.  No matter that it was the end of April, she decorated and had presents for all of us anyway.  :)
 Kaiden playing with his chicken that lays candy eggs.
 Opening presents.
The kids all got scooters to play on.  And the sign names grew to include everyone!
 New hairstyle I'm considering.
 Spinning with Kaiden.
 Drinking ice water on the deck all bundled up.
I got to see my friend Trena just a day before she and her family moved back to Alaska. 
My mom won employee of the year for the whole region for her work.
 The missions committee from our church here found an apartment for me on the edge of town.  I LOVE living here because the hills are just outside my door and it's a nice quiet spot. 
 Some of the views from the road that curves around to my apartment.
 I see white-tail deer all the time and occasionally see a turkey or a rabbit.
 Can you spot the 2 deer?

If you're wondering when we're in an area near you, check my "Tentative Schedule" tab above.  I update it as we have changes.  Hope to get to see you while we're back!

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