Three weeks until D-day (departure day), and this is where we're at:
She calls pigtails "tickles" and this day she requested "piggie tickles."
Do you see those pretty purple-ish patches on the hills there? Yeah. Well, meet "red grass" - also known as "May grass" since that's when it blooms. It is the bane of any allergy-prone individuals (ahem... me.) It's the time of year when we sickly types keep our inhalers close by and make sure we're stocked up on allergy meds and nasal spray.
Snowflake has set up camp under the garden shed... just far enough under that it's a big pain to try and reach the nest. For two weeks she's be incubating 15 eggs, and guess what? Muscovies take 5 weeks to hatch, and so the ducklings are due the day we leave PNG. Bummer. Thankfully we now know who will be renting our house when we're gone, and that family is willing to look after some cute, fuzzy ducklings until they can be transferred to a more permanent home in the village of a Papua New Guinean friend.
I've done an inventory of my pantry and freezer and have made up a meal list for our last three weeks to use everything up.
This morning I had the boys help me pack a box of their "most special things." This is a box that will stay in PNG, but which is marked to be shipped back to the U.S. if for some unforeseen reason we are unable to return. The concept was a little tricky to make the boys understand, but once they got it they were a lot more willing to pack up their most treasured possessions. I let them pick anything that could be legally shipped back to the States, and most of it was not what I would have picked, but this was their box to pack. (And I remember having a treasure box when I was a kid that held things I'm sure my parents weren't that excited about.)
And Greg finished out the morning by making some more "passports" for the stuffed animals that he and his siblings plan to take with them on our trip to the U.S.
We've had some interesting conversations this week as we talk about our plans. Some of the things that my kids remember about the U.S. have changed since we were last there.
Me: "Do you remember Uncle Ben and Aunt Meggin? We're going to stay with them for a little while."
Boys: "Yeah, I remember going to see where Uncle Ben works and having Nerf gun fight! That was really cool!"
Me: "Umm... Uncle Ben actually has a different job now. He doesn't work at that place any more."
Boys: "Well, I remember going to their house."
Me: "Umm... actually they have a different house now, in a different town..... but they DO have the same dog!"
(Thank you, Ben and Meggin, for having the same dog!!)
Until next week (... if I've had time and the presence of mind to take pictures!)