With that being said, Alex, Kris, and Laird are moving to Japan (via Seattle) tomorrow morning. I went over this afternoon to say my good-bye's because I was concerned that if I went for dinner that I'd be crying too hard to drive home in the dark. Surprisingly, it wasn't as bad as I anticipated...until my nephew started screaming, crying, and reaching for me and saying he wanted to "go to Ali's house". Then the waterworks started. I will admit that I was blessed to have gotten to see them more regularly for the past year and I am happy for them that they all get to be together for a bit and experience a new culture; I just wish that my nephew was old enough to appreciate it and understand that his family here still loves him and that we'll always be here for him regardless of where they are. I anticipate that he will be confused and more than once ask to "Go home to Gama's house". We plan on using Skype to stay in touch but at times I wonder if that will make things harder in the beginning. He'll see the people he's gotten to know on a computer screen and probably won't understand why he can't actually SEE us (or come over and break our garage door). However, my sister and BIL are intelligent, competent adults and I have faith that they will raise him to be a good person who doesn't feel like his extended family is a nuisance. I have plans to teach him to ski, wake board, and ride horses.
Because they are leaving, my family had a small going away party for them on Sunday. It was mainly just Kris and Alex's immediate families, and we all had a chance to spend a little time together, since seeing Kris' family again might not happen for a long time either (they don't live in town). My aunt and uncle from Winston-Salem came up with their puppy for a few days, and it's always good to see them. Of all my aunts and uncle's I'm probably closest to them even though we don't visit near as much as we should (mainly my fault). I also have some family spread throughout the US that I wish I could even to afford to visit, but with grad school and my massive student loan debt, saving for a trip to Japan in a few years will be a stretch. I know, boo hoo for me. I'm having trouble coping...
...and it doesn't help that I've started a new job that is WAY harder than I anticipated (but I do like), I had to have a last-minute lithotripsy that my insurance totally screwed me over on when it came to paying for it (8mm kidney stone repeatedly getting stuck in my ureter was not pleasant), my oldest cat just got diagnosed with kidney failure, and I started grad school and due to all of the above feel like I am drowning in it already.
Speaking of, I am now in nurse practitioner school. I still plan on opening a cupcake/muffin/coffee shop but at least I'll have a job I can do on the side and until then. It is definitely different from nursing school, mainly because it's online and I am now supposed to be on the diagnosing and treating end rather than a doctor's bitch following orders that sometimes are so ridiculous most people won't believe them if I told them. Being in an online program also means more group work and discussion boards, but maybe being on the computer all the time will give me an excuse to blog when I'm procrastinating.
Anyways, this post is long enough; I will post more soon. No really, soon. Oh, and we made it to the lake a few times which is always fun. We even got Laird to tube...with an adult.
Some of the photos below are stolen from family. The crappier ones are compliments of my phone.