After Darin's hooding, two brothers hugged each other long and hard - the only sign of real emotion in the whole ceremony.
Most full-time missionaries commit to stay their entire mission within the boundaries of the mission to which they've been called. Senior missionary couples ("Casals") enjoy a bit more leniency. Before we left for Brazil, we promised Darin that we would be back to attend his graduation from medical school in May, 2015, after only 12 months in the mission field. Soon after we arrived in Brazil, we got permission to return to the United States for a brief visit for this very important event. We even received help from the mission office to get our flights at 1/2 the price expected. Our flights went without problems, and our 5 days in Henderson, Nevada, were the absolute BEST! We had but one regret: We didn't have much 1:1 time with anyone! Maybe next time, after our mission! Hover cursor over pictures for captions.
GATHERING, GETTING RE-ACQUAINTED, MEALS FOR THE MASSES, FUN !
SUNDAY MORNING: CHRISTMAS IN MAY !
For Christmas gifts to everyone in the family, we gathered items for months and had several packages ready to go in plenty of time to reach the States. BUT--Mailing anything from the post office in Bocaiúva is super inconvenient, difficult and not-at-all secure -- let alone expensive and SLOW. So nothing was sent. When we came home for the Graduation/Reunion in May, we filled one huge suitcase with Christmas gifts from Brazil. So, in the short time between breakfast and our family photo shoot, I very unceremoniously handed out eight family bags and let them open and distribute the token gifts they should have received five months earlier.
FAMILY PHOTO SHOOT IN HENDERSON PARK
WE MISSED 9 MEMBERS OF OUR FAMILY: ZAK; BEN, KAYLEN, TYUS, JACOBI; SAM, CALEB, GARRETT, RYAN !
MAY 17 - DARIN GRADUATES FROM MEDICAL SCHOOL!
With the main event competed, we all went our separate ways until there's an event that will bring us together again. What a wonderful family! What a wonderful weekend with that family! Thanks goes to Darin and Shannon, our hosts, and to those who assembled photo collages for me to use!