January 11, 2013

“Welcome to the United States of America…”

“Welcome to the United States of America…” I was surprised how happy I was to hear those words. For more than one reason. First, it meant we were home. (well, not Hawaii, but at least closer) No matter how much we loved the Philippines and we are SO going to miss all the people there, this is still home. And second, Lady Hiva was able to make it without a problem. YAY! Our only problem was when we were sent to "Secondary Screening" at the Port of Entry--LOL! Thankfully, the guy at Secondary did not seem to have a problem with the fact that we live in the Philippines like his buddy we talked to first did. Can you imagine being deported from your own country! HAHAHA!

Gramy and Grandpa picked us—and ALL our luggage—up in DC and became our permanent chauffeur’s for the next few days. They are such great sports, especially when both of them were not feeling well earlier in the week.

Settling in has been an adventure. DC is a city both Lady and I love. We are staying in an area that is really familiar to us. But it is still different to be here after living in a foreign country for an extended period. Little things that we may have taken for granted before are noticed and appreciated. For example, beautiful flower and shrub gardens—even in the winter they are well kept and devoid of trash. Or Clean air. It is amazing to go running in the morning and not feel suffocated.

Speaking of running, that is quite a change from Manila. IT IS SO COLD HERE! We had to go to Marshall’s our first day here so I could buy me some running pants. Hawaii and Manila don NOT require running pants. To be out running when I can see my breath and wearing a stocking cap and gloves brings back memories of my mission. (Although, thankfully DC does not get near as cold as the -20f winters of New England). I have enjoyed watching the sunrise over the Reflecting pond between the monuments. Such a peaceful time to be out. In fact, it is so peaceful that every morning it is just me a few other runners and a whole bunch of geese crazy enough to enjoy it!

See...just me, the sunrise and the geese...

Lady has been doing well. THANK YOU ALL FOR ALL THE PRAYERS! It has made a HUGE difference. We had to laugh that it is weird it is going so well. Lady commented that she hopes they do an ultrasound soon (other pregnancies we had them once a week) just so we know everything is ok. But at the end of the day we are both just happy that she is feeling ok and the doctors say the baby is healthy too.

We had made a list for ourselves and each day we try to accomplish something on that list. The first was to get cell phones. It is amazing to once again be able to just CALL family and not have to calculate time difference first or see if we have enough internet connection to have a clear call. Haha. Next, we need a car.

Boeing is being sold. Sad, we know. He has been a faithful car for us. I listed him for sale when we left. I will not need him when I go back and there is not use having him just sit in the garage for months. Luckily, several people were willing to give us an offer so we hope he is with a new family in the next few days. We spent several days on the internet scouring deals and looking at cars. Then on Wednesday, Grandpa Harrison again offered to be our chauffeur while we test drove cars. Beginning the day our plan was just to LOOK and see what our options are…not to buy yet. Well after driving several used vehicles we found a KIA Sportage that is brand new for a little bit more and great warrantee. We debated over a Denny’s lunch (we forgot how much you can get for a small amount of money) and decided to go back and get the vehicle. The first car that either Lady or I have purchased brand new; we drove it off the lot with 3 miles on it!

SO meet the newest member of our family—after much discussion Lady named her Mongoose. She said the front headlights and the sloping body makes it look like a Mongoose head. I was favoring Nika or Slate or Stormy , but I was told those names are unoriginal and cliché! LOL so Mongoose it is! (Kind of funny actually when it comes to naming kids it is the opposite, Lady is the one that likes the plane jane names that EVERYONE has and I am the one that likes to have a name that is the baby’s own name, not shared with someone else)
Meet Mongoose...

As you can see things have been going well. We are still up at 0300H everyday and SO tired by 2000H, but it is great to be here and know that Lady is getting the help that she needs.


  1. So jealous that you guys are back in the States! Glad to hear that Hiva is feeling well and that you guys are settling in. We'll continue to send good vibes your way!

  2. I like Mongoose! Well I don't know about the name but I like the car! I love Kia's. I had a Kia and it was great! We're jealous about you being in the states as well but we're very happy for you as well. Enjoy some American goodness for us!

  3. I love your blog an updates....we love you too!