The flight went well. Long, but well. We did end up on a new airplane with individual touchscreens and movies on demand. That kept everyone pretty well occupied, though H. was suddenly aware that she wasn't in Kansas anymore. All the other planes she had flown on were Chinese airlines and all the children's shows were in Mandarin. We were on United and the programming was pretty much all English all the time. I'm not sure a 9 year old can really understand all the implications of moving to a different country.
We arrived and went through customs, a straight forward, but long process of standing in line and H. became a US citizen. I always feel as though I should take a picture to mark the occasion, but no cameras are allowed in the customs and immigration area. And then we saw our family.
I hadn't realized how much I had missed them all until I saw them. It was so good to hug all my babies... big and small. M. even got excused from her rehearsal so she could be there, too. And not only my family was there but the H-S family and the P family were there to greet us as well. P Family Mom figured out that this was the 7th time of our families gathering together at the airport to greet the newest family member.
And not only did they greet us at the airport and watch our children, they cleaned our house (the moms and older children) to the point of cleaning the stairway that L. had decorated, arranged meals for the next two weeks, and the H-S family toilet trained K. I'll have to leave the country more often... though perhaps all the nice treats would stop if it became a regular thing.
And so now we're all back home and trying to get over jet lag. All the people who stayed behind did a great job of surviving without us, but I can tell it was a little stressful for G. and L. They are having the most difficulty with the transition and I can tell all the bottled up stress is finally being let loose. I'm hoping we're at the low point today and things will start to improve after this. (Crossing fingers.)
I'll leave you with some not-too-great photos of G. and L. because it's been a while and some of you may be in withdrawal. They are not overly smiley today and the smile I did coax out of L. is a little manic. But I think they're still cute. Even when they are fussy.