So, this year we had this genius idea to stick around Korea a bit longer after school got out. We knew there would be things to do to prepare for my transition into stay-at-home mom next year, and we knew that we didn't want to do the rush that we did last year--leaving for the airport just moments after we were allowed to leave the country. But, the past 10 days have drug on and on. Sure, I did have a lot to do, and no, I wasn't getting anything accomplished quickly, but 10 days was too long. Even if I have read an entire book (that in no way related to school) for the first time in a year.
Oh well. We've now experimented with leaving about four days after we got out of school (felt too late at the time), leaving on the last day of school (felt way too rushed), and leaving 10 days after school got out (felt like about a month!). Who knows what we'll do next year?
We are staying an extra 10 days later in the summer, since I don't have to go back to school in the fall. It has always been important to me to back in time to recoup from jet lag and spend some time working to prepare for the year before we're actually required to be back. Eric isn't as concerned about it, and since we still arrive about 10 days before the kids start school, we should be able to adjust by the time we need to.
To say we're excited is a bit of an understatement. Even today, the last day before we leave, has taken for-e-ver! We ended up eating dinner at 5:00 and then watching a movie before bed just because the afternoon went on and on. We're packed with suitcases loaded in the car and can't wait until 11:00 tomorrow morning to finally get the dreaded travel underway!
Eric's mom came to visit us at the beginning of May. The timing worked out well for her to visit Evan and our new nephew (who we finally get to meet in a week!) in Hawaii and then spend a few days with us before heading back to Seattle. We had a holiday weekend with Thursday off, then worked Friday, but had Monday off, as well. Cade had both Friday and Tuesday off from school, too, so we really needed the help!
On her first day, we had a mini swim lesson for Cade. One of the swim teachers at our school offered a class for pre-swimmers to introduce them to some of the concepts in preparation for swim lessons, and Cade needed it! He loves the bath, but isn't a huge fan of the pool. He's perfectly content to sit on the edge and watch the others play, so we wanted to take advantage of this for him. Kennedy got to show her grandma that she can now swim the entire length of the pool--pretty impressive!
After his swim lesson, we had our staff picnic at school. We had BBQ from the base, followed by the annual softball game. The weather was perfect for it, though I wasn't feeling great.
The next day Eric, Kennedy, and I had to go to school, but Cade's school was closed, so Lindy and Cade walked to school and had lunch with Eric in the afternoon.
There were a couple of tourist-y things that we had in mind to do, but it was a holiday weekend in Korea. A big one, obviously, with all of the days off we had. So, we knew that no matter what we did or when, it was going to busy!
Nonetheless, we decided to head out of town on Saturday to visit the Garden of Morning Calm again. Remember our last trip there? The one that we took in December, but I didn't post about until after this trip in May? Whoops!
Lindy had been to Korea twice before, but it was during our spring break both times--not a particularly nice time to visit. It's still chilly and brown at the end of March. Since she was coming so much later in the year this time, we really wanted to show her how nice Korea can be! So, we headed out of town to see the flowers.
It was strange seeing what the garden looked like in the daylight without all of the lights; I think most people would do it the other way around, but we tend to do things backwards. And I'll admit that I am tempted to see it in every season, though I don't think it will happen.
The first time we drove there it took us about two hours because we had the wrong address. This time it took us about eight hours because of the traffic! It was stop and go from about the time we left our house until we reached the garden. Insanity! We passed the time by listening to old Raffi songs from YouTube.
We had packed some sandwiches and snacks in case we couldn't find anything the kids wanted to eat when we arrived, but we made it through those and were still starving by the time we reached the garden. So, we stopped at the first stand we saw and picked up french fry-covered hot dogs on a stick (picture a corn dog, but replace the corn breading with french fries).
The garden was beautiful, and I think we all decided it was worth it (it had to be at that point, though!). Thankfully, our drive home only took about an hour.
Monday was Children's Day, and it's one of those days when any place remotely child-friendly is packed, so Eric and the kids took Lindy on an adventure to find a Japanese prison while I stayed home and worked. He didn't take any pictures, but it sounded as if it was an interesting trip.
Tuesday, Eric and I were back to work, but Cade had the day off again, and we let Kennedy stay home, too. They got to spend some quality time with grandma before she left that afternoon.