Sunday, August 14, 2011

It's been awhile...

...since my last post. Four and a half months, actually. A fair bit has happened since then. When I last posted we were in Niamey and I had just found out that I was expecting our second child. The hot season was just starting to heat up and power and water cuts were becoming longer and more frequent. At that point we had two and a half months left in Niger. I spent a fair bit of that time in my house...between the extreme heat and morning sickness I didn't feel like getting out much. I was thankful when I started to feel better and could get out and see friends again.

Security always remained and issue and much of the time we had armed guards in our yard at night. And then, two weeks before we had planned on leaving we were asked to evacuate. There were heavily armed vehicles spotted heading in our direction. We had less than 24 hours to pack our bags and leave. (Some people have asked what we did with all of our stuff...well, the beauty of owning our own home over there is that we didn't do anything with it, we just packed up what we were planning on taking back to America with us and then locked up the house and the storage shed and were on our way.)

And then we sat in Niamey for two weeks while we waited for June 16th to arrive. The guest house where we were staying only had room for us for the first week so half way through our stay in Niamey we had to change guest houses.

The night that we moved there was a big rainstorm, the first one of the season in Niamey. During that rainstorm we were robbed. They took our computer (which had all of our email contacts and three months of photos from last year that never made it to the hard drive plus my memory card with my more recent shots...our Mother's Day Easter Egg Hunt among them), and wiped us out of all of our cash--CFA, euros, and dollars. The money was in a cash box under Donnie's side of the bed. They had come into our room while we were sleeping. They'd even grabbed Donnie's jeans and took what cash he had and his phone.

Needless to say, we were under a fair bit of stress having had to have left our home under the circumstances we did, then getting robbed, and then not knowing what awaited us when we finally made it back to California. We were pretty sure of our housing but had no jobs to pay rent yet and no vehicles.

We left Niger on June 16th. We then spent almost two weeks in Alabama and Georgia visiting Donnie's family and some supporters. We arrived in California at the end of June a few days later made it up to Humboldt. Thankfully, by the end of July we had both secured jobs (not quite sure how we'll survive after I quit, though). Donnie's back working at Ploletski's Appliance Center and I'm working at one of the nursing homes. I was able to take my car back from my mom (which leaves her carless) and we bought a $600 clunker that we hope won't be a money pit and will last us for the duration of our stay here.

Micah is doing great adjusting to life in the states. On July 25th we celebrated his 2nd birthday and then had a party the next weekend. Donnie's having a little bit of a hard time being gone all day long and just getting to see him for a few hours in the evening most days but I think overall we're adjusting back just fine too. Aside from gestational diabetes (which I knew was coming and will hopefully be as well controlled as last time), the pregnancy is going really well and our LITTLE GIRL should be arriving sometime around Thanksgiving.

Ok, so I think that about covers it.

PS: If you haven't heard from me in a long time via email send me an email ( and make sure still I have your email address!