Saturday, August 27, 2011

hellos and goodbyes... or should I say goodbyes and hellos

I forgot to say goodbye.

A forgotten embrace.
A neglected and heartfelt "thank you for all you did for us this summer".

I realized it within minutes of arriving home in Quito.
I never said goodbye to the dishwasher... and oh, how I miss that dishwasher.

We arrived in Ecuador.
I took off my engagement ring (not at all safe to wear around here) and put it safely away, put on my rubber gloves and felt like I haven't taken them off for the last three days.
I know....."Waaaaa, waaaaa, keep your whining to yourself."

So we're back.
Saying hello again to 
... slow internet.
... washing/soaking produce.
 ... hard breathing.
... over-inflated packaging.
(featuring some of my precious imports)
... noisy days and nights.
... throwing toilet paper in the garbage instead of flushing it.
(no photo to illustrate for reasons I hope are obvious)

And while I am making it out to be all negative, it actually has been rather delightful.  
It was a fabulous summer.  Simply marvelous in fact (and I have a whole bunch of blogging to do about it, well, if I get to it, that is).
But there really is, just as Dorothy put it, no place like home.  It is good to be back.
Even Cade, yes Cade, our very own son said on the night we arrived that it was good to be home.
(This is the guy that insisted that this house would never be home.  He also fixed his slip-of-the-tongue last week, when he said that he wanted to go home, but quickly saying that it was because he wanted to see Nolly, the cat.  I'm pretty sure he hasn't spent more than 4 seconds with Nolly in the past three days.)

Poor kids, we got home at 9:00 p.m. after waking up at 2:30 in the morning and they had to start school at 8:00 the next morning (Thursday).  They handled it amazingly well.  They are quite the troopers. 

With everything going on, I almost forgot to take the first-day-of-school pictures.  And there was no first-day-of-school finery and celebration.
Anyway, the pictures were pretty rushed... we were running late.... but at least they got done.

Mia in her photo-shoot outfit.
 Not sure what is going on with Lucy's pose here....
 Cade was a little chilly, but insisted on wearing shorts.
 And something/someone is missing, you say?
Yes, Maddy has yet to have her first day of school.
She's been running a fever, sore throat (strep?), sore ears (ear infection?) and as of tonight, goopy eyes (pink eye?).  
Being that we are in Ecuador, we've just skipped the whole going to the doctor thing and gone straight to the pharmacy to get some antibiotics.  Now, we could have just gone and got something but fortunately Eric had the sense to check up a typical dosage on the internet.  And then, even more fortunately, the Tachney's (or doctor friends) flew in tonight and were able to take a look at her and give a better dosage.
The thing about the Tachney's?
Whenever we see them (not nearly often enough) one of us is sick.  Not sure what that means.  But I do know that we are glad that they always help us out.  Its awfully nice to have smart, professional, medical types as our friends.
So ya, back to Maddy.... hopefully she'll start on Monday.
Nothing like starting off the new year strong.

While the kids were off to school, I set about to unpack this:
Yes, we hauled all of that through the airport and customs in Quito... which fortunately was not a big deal either.  Seriously, everything went so well.  With a load like this

there could have been a lot to go wrong.  But it didn't - thank the Lord!

So while the kids did school, Eric did some house fixing stuff, I unpacked and did laundry.
Laundry, you question?  Why would I have laundry?  Please, let me tell you.
I had to wash all of my clothes that I left here for the summer.  Well, I washed all of the ones I didn't throw away, that is.
You see, before we left, I moved all of my clothes into one chest of drawers in my closet so that the guys staying at our place could use the other set.  I'd been having issues with those drawers before we left - very musty and retaining moisture.  I aired out everything before we left and figured it should be okay as summer is not rainy season, and really it is quite dry up here.
Problem is that they walls aren't dry.  Apparently it is something about how they build here - moisture gets trapped in the cinderblock walls and eventually comes out (I mentioned it before over here).  For some strange reason, that is happening a lot on my side of the closet.  It is a little excessive, so we are wondering if there is some pipe issues or something in there.
Well, all this to say that regardless of my airing and prepping, there was a whole lot of moisture in the closet and so a whole lot of mold started growing on my clothes.
Yup, about 75-80% of my clothes are moldy.
I had to throw a few things away - just way too much greenish fuzzy stuff to deal with.  
The rest?
Washed - laundry detergent, vinegar and the oxyclean I thankful brought back here.  
Dried - lots of bounce sheets and then several hours on the roof in the intense sun.... as in the picture.
Brought back in - started to fold and discovered that they still really were stinky and the stains didn't come out.
So now I am on round three of washing.  Yes, I have washed, dried and aired them out once, washed and dried again and then, uh-huh, a third time.
Good times.
I might just be minus a whole lot of clothes - the vast majority of my wardrobe. 

Fortunately I did buy a few things this summer, but not nearly enough if I end up having to throw this stuff out.  Oh well, it will all work out, as long as there are no consequences for being a wardrobe repeater over and over and over.

It's a good lesson for me in putting my "money where my mouth is".  The summer was yet again a struggle with and against materialism (possibly more ramblings on that later).... wanting it all and yet wanting to not want it.  So now, even after days and days of shopping, I will be reduced to much less and a stark reminder that it is, after all, just stuff.

One thing I do need that I just can't seem to buy?
So I am off to bed, even though there is just so much more to write about.
Sleep.... time to say hello.

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