Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Our Last Few Days in the United States

Tonight we board a plane that will take us halfway around the world to Germany! I can't believe that day has finally come, although in some ways it feels like it's crept up on us. We knew in May 2010 that Germany would most likely be our last rotation, so we've known for almost two years. We got Brady's passport in July 2010, when he was only 4 1/2 months old, so it's really funny to look at now that he's so much older. It'll be good until he's 5 1/2 years old, so he will look nothing like that picture.

Our return date is Saturday, July 21, 2012, and as you can see the ticker no longer counts down to Germany, but instead counts down the days until our return to the States.

When we got confirmation in April that we were really going, I was very nervous. The more time that passed, I became more and more excited about the prospect of travel and having the experience of a lifetime. It's perfect timing for us since Brady hasn't started school and we don't have to turn our lives upside down to do this relocation. This last month has been primarily stressful, with packing everything that the company was going to ship over there for us and getting our house ready for the movers. It doesn't help that this is the second year in a row that Christmas has fallen a few weeks away from a major move for us.

We are taking 6 checked bags (each one almost at 50lb), 6 carry-on bags (only one is an actual suitcase), Brady's carseat, and a stroller. I packed the 6 checked bags before I came to Pittsburgh, but had ordered things online and picked up a few things since, so I knew it was going to be a stretch getting everything in and under the bag weight limit of 50lb. Andy didn't arrive in Pittsburgh until yesterday morning, so my mom and I have been working on repacking all the bags since then. We finally finished about an hour and a half ago and we leave for the airport in about an hour. My dad is taking us to the airport (not a far drive since my parents live 5 min from Pittsburgh International Airport), and he's going to park our car in short-term parking and help us get all of our checked bags to the check-in desk.

Brady and I have been in Pittsburgh a whole week spending time with my parents and we've had a really great time. My mom is having her second knee replacement in late February, plus they are going to do some adjustments on the first knee, so we will see if they make it out to Europe. There are plenty of other family and friends who have shown interest in visiting, so we hope we don't go the whole six months without seeing them. Below are some pictures of the things that we've done in the last week.

Can't believe we'll be halfway around the world in less than 12 hours!

My brother, Alex, and his girlfriend, Lauren, came over twice with my adorable nephew, Kairo. Brady LOVES him and Kairo thinks he's another puppy so they roll on the ground together like crazy.

What move of ours would be complete without a farewell dinner at Ichiban? Brady was really interested in the chopsticks and even managed to eat a little salad with them.

Brady and Dubby playing blocks last night for the last time in a long while.

This morning, Andy took Brady out with him while he ran errands so we could get some more packing done. He went to Best Buy to recycle my old laptop and Brady got to ride in the car cart. His two favorite things are cars and puppies.

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