November 30, 2012

And the bombs have stopped

Pssst... I have a super awesome update to: my surrofamily and rockets.

The chaos has ceased!! My sweet Israeli family is back together and going about their normal, everyday lives. 

It's such a good thing!!

This is quite possibly the shortest "short and sweet" post ever.

November 18, 2012

My surrofamily + rockets = me sad and worried

I've never shared with Blogworld where my surrofamily lives, but with Avner's permission I am telling you now. I am telling you because I want to share with you what is going on. Here goes...

Less than a week after I returned from my trip, Carrie (BFF) sent me a text saying things weren't looking good in Israel. Ta da... the guys and babies live in Israel. I'm not one to keep up with the news. It's usually depressing and brings me down. So when Carrie sent the message I immediately went to CNN News. Sure enough I started reading words like rockets, fighting, deaths. Scary words.

After reading the news, I sent Avner a message telling him I didn't like the news coming from Israel. I did not expect the response I got. "I was drafted last night"... uhh what?!?! I hoped he was joking but I knew he wasn't. He has been assigned to doctor duty. I have no idea how close he is to the Gaza Strip (really anywhere in Israel is too close to Gaza). Like a silly girl, I started crying (I think I've mentioned I am an emotional person). I always worry for them living in a country where war seems to be a constant threat. Now my worries were warranted.

Gaza seems to be throwing a major temper tantrum right now. The guys live in Tel Aviv. If I am reading the map right, Gaza and Tel Aviv is a little less than 50 miles (or 80 km is you prefer) apart. Later that morning I received another message saying that Tel Aviv's air raid sirens were sounding. At least two rockets had been fired with intentions of hitting the city. I was already anxious that Avner was close to where all this crap was happening but now Roy and the babies are dodging rockets? Are you kidding me? I don't have the right words to express my true feelings. People I love are in danger. Like, really serious immediate danger. The only thing I want to do is put on my superwoman cape and go rescue them.

Most Americans have no idea what it's like to live in a country that seems to be in a constant state of threat. I've turned into a stalker of sorts. I'm checking the news constantly. I'm disappointed and relieved when there are no updates. Disappointed because I want to read that harmony has finally struck and peace has overcome. Relieved because the Israeli death toll doesn't seem to be rising.

I don't know what it's like to send a family member or a close friend overseas to Iraq or Afghanistan. I imagine it feels a lot like how I feel. It sucks to not know what is going on at all times. My mind tries to be positive but the what-ifs creep in. Maybe I'm being way dramatic... I don't know. I'm worried though. I'll remain worried even after the fighting has ceased. I'm a little overprotective like that.

Thankfully, we have the ability to stay in contact through messaging. I check in with them at least once a day. If you're curious... yes, I'd send hourly check-ins, but I think that would be a little over the top and possibly annoying.

The day I learned how serious Hamas was about starting a war, Thursday, was a tense day for me. A lot of worrisome and distracting thoughts. As the days have passed, I am feeling more confident my sweet little surrofamily will be okay. For now all we can do is wait. Waiting sucks! I've never been a huge fan of it. 

Anywho..... please please please keep these special people in your thoughts and prayers.

November 17, 2012

My trip

I recently visited my surrofamily. As I've mentioned, they live overseas. I've wished a million times they lived closer to me but that just hasn't happened. So I traveled across the Atlantic Ocean to spend some quality time with them.

I had been planning this visit since summer. When I first started planning it seemed like November was an eternity away, but as we all know time flies and I soon found myself boarding a plane.

I traveled alone which made me a little nervous, but at the same time I was excited. I was nervous because it's a big deal to travel that far alone and I'm a small town type of girl - as in, I don't get out much. I was excited because I would have all this time to myself. Sure, I was on a plane and there is only so much you can do on a plane, but at least I could live in my own thoughts for awhile. Remember I have 4 kids... alone time doesn't come easy for me.

Avner picked me up from the airport. Together we drove to his and Roy's apartment. There is something about these two guys that I just can't explain. Just being in their presence makes me so happy.

I was anxious to see the babies. I was excited to watch them and just be near them. I wanted to get to know their personalities. I am happy to say they are quite perfect. Their personalities are somewhat similar to when they were in utero. Ella is a busy little bee with her crawling. The cat's dish has some sort of magnetic control over her. She tries her best to crawl to it before getting caught. She is very curious and seemed a little suspicious of me. By the end of my trip I think she was starting to accept me. Ely is full of smiles and very welcoming. He is content sitting in one spot (although he does crawl too) and playing or taking in the world around him. His favorites sounds are aba and ga. He gets pretty excited when he says them.

I spent time with the babies everyday. The guys have stuck to a great routine. During their playtime, I sat on the floor with them. During bath time, I watched as they happily splashed around. They love water! Every night we enjoyed a walk. In the evening, there are many couples pushing their little ones in strollers and/or walking their dogs up and down the boulevards. Actually all day the boulevards are busy with people going here or there. The weather was pretty great too. It was about 85 and sunny everyday... and it's their winter season. A bit different than Minnesota's winter months.

The guys were excellent hosts while I was there. Roy set me up with an apartment he oversees while the owner is away. Avner always made sure that I had a menu that read in English. If the restaurant didn't, he would read me the menu. Those are just a few examples.They both took time away from work to spend time with me. They showed me popular tourist sites of their country. Because of privacy issues I won't share where exactly I went, but it's a country with a ton of history and impressive landmarks. I know what you are thinking... "how did she get soooo lucky to be matched with these IPs?". I ask myself that too.

I met some of the guys' family. To be honest I was very nervous about that. They had certain expectations of me I'm sure. Is it weird that I didn't want to disappoint them? Both moms were very surprised at how young I look (I am quite youthful looking, you know haha). It was sweet. I'm not comfortable with a lot of attention on me. Lucky for me the moms didn't put me on the spot. They are both very nice ladies. I was happy to meet them and to spend a little bit of time with them.

I didn't even cry when we said our goodbyes! If I would have known what this week would bring I am sure my goodbyes would have been said with a boatload of tears. I'll fill you in on that news in another post.

Here are some pictures. I didn't take nearly as many as I should have. Guess I'll have to visit them again just so I can take more pictures.

Flying in

Pretty girl Ella

Ummm... nice view huh?

Miss Ella... look at that cute button nose!

It was tough getting these babes to sit still.


Ely... love that face!
Aww! Love them!

My favorite picture of all! Just makes me smile.

November 13, 2012

Happy 10 months!

Ella and Ely are 10 months old today!!

As most of you know, I spent last week with them. Let's just say... I'm still smiling!!

A blog post about my trip is in the works. This is just a quick "Happy 10 months" shout out.