What a day! — of great celebrations.
In the morning we had house church at the Sakamotos, and at the end they surprised us with a fun birthday celebration for Olivia.
Then, we rushed home to get ready for Annie’s music recital. She and I have been going to music classes for 3 year olds at Yamaha music school. Annie loves music, and it was a great chance to build relationships with other moms and children. Two of the girls in her music class are now in her new preschool class. The recital was at a brand new, beautiful concert hall recently built in Sanda. The only damper on the big event was the fact that the moms had to go up on stage with the children, and stand and sing behind them! Not my cup of tea, but I got through it and Annie did great. We thankfully found out in time that the kids REALLY dress up for this event, so we were able to get Annie a dress that made her feel like a princess! Megumi was staying with us for the weekend, so did Annie’s hair and even a little makeup….
Here’s a video of one of her 2 songs:
We were so thankful- surprised- amazed! – at the friends who came out to watch Annie’s first recital! Four friends from our house church, Yasko, Megumi, Bobby & Claire, and our family. Annie REALLY felt special.
We hurried home from the recital in order to celebrate Olivia’s 2nd birthday! It was a fun, fun evening with lots of food and lots of laughing… 7 kids and 10 adults gathered to celebrate and each other. Olivia’s favorite character is Scrat, one of the “supporting characters” from the Ice Age movies. Whenever Olivia sees Scrat on the movie, she just squeals with total delight… we sometimes will put on just the Scrat parts of the video to enjoy watching Olivia watch it. So, we had to do a “Scrat” theme, and everyone had a chance to enjoy watching Olivia watch Scrat for a few minutes before we pulled out the Scrat cake. Megumi helped me make it the night before — she has graduated from being a cake assistant to be a partner! Eric made the design, and we stayed up (2:30 am!) doing the decorating. It’s a crazy, fun habit.
As the party was winding down, Claire and I went upstairs to put Olivia to bed. She’d had quite a full day! And I couldn’t help but start crying. This night was the last family event we would have with this family… while we are back in the US the next 8 months, our friends Bobby & Claire, and Megumi, will be moving away from this area. They have SO MUCH been our family the last 3 years! It is hard to imagine celebrations without them. There is so much that I love about being a missionary, but I will never get used to the frequent goodbyes that are required by our lifestyle.
Despite the final shadow that fell on emotional me, it was a wonderful day. We are very blessed, and very thankful.