After 10 months in Korea, away from friends and family, we were more than ready to head to the states for Christmas! Our trip went something like this:
Work all week and then stay awake the night before the trip (that was a killer, let me tell ya!)
4:30am Sat. carry four suitcases down four flights of stairs and then walk down to street to meet our ride, Jin, who was kind enough to take us to the airport at such an early hour
Walk through the priority check-in line (Silver Medallion status was the best thing ever on this trip~intentional hyperbole) and eat breakfast at Paris Croissant before going through security and finding our gate (priority again) :)
Fly to Shanghai, which is less than 2 hours away and struggling to stay awake the entire time
Go through Shanghai customs, find our gate and wait with a nice gentleman we met who had been doing gospel concerts in Korea.
Board the flight bound for New York along with droves of people including a screaming toddler, who, no exaggeration... cried 9 out of the 13 hour flight! I'm not a mother, so I was trying to be understanding, but boy did I want to get my hands on that kid! The flight was a cheap one, therefore the plane was pretty barebones... aka the only entertainment was a few screams in the ceilings playing movies I had already seen. blah. Oh well. We were supposed to be sleeping now since we were prepping for the new time zone.
Arrival at JFK (the world's worst airport with the world's rudest people)... went through American customs and had to take all our luggage to the next building, which was the domestic terminal. You can only imagine what we looked like at this point of the trip. We found our gate, nestled in a quiet corner with a Chili's nearby. I took the opportunity to go freshen up, which included washing my hair in the sink. I wondered why I was getting so many odd looks until Robert reminded me that we were in the domestic terminal. These people were probably only flying like 3-6 hours and wondering why I was taking a shower in the airport sink! :) After freshening up and feeling a whole lot better about life in general, we headed to Chili's for some meal (I don't even know which one it was).
We boarded a plane for Atlanta. While there, we found we could catch an earlier flight but that our bags would be late. We figured it would be better to wait with our parents than sitting in Atlanta alone.
After another layover, we boarded the plane headed for West Palm Beach. With all the time changes and long flights, it was now nearing midnight on Saturday... yes, I know... time zones confuse me too. Don't feel bad. Both sets of parents were eagerly awaiting our arrival. We waited awhile for the luggage and headed home, arriving after midnight sometime. Yes, it was a pretty crazy trip but the prospect of seeing everyone kept us going for a little while longer.
We got up the next morning and headed to church where we got to see great friends.
Favorite Piano teacher of all time and best "Angel" instructor around! :)
I will always love this view!
Sunday Lunch~ a family tradition!
When we got our tickets, I was so excited that we would be in America for my oldest brother, Jason's birthday! It was really fun to be able to celebrate with him.
Some friends came over in the afternoon to hang out and prepare for the upcoming party that evening (I know, right?! A party that soon? Well, I figured it was best to do it right off the bat while I was still running on pure energy!)
In the following pictures, while it may seem like I am in more pictures than Robert, that's simply because I am in more pictures! He loves visiting Florida but it doesn't quite have all the same memories for him as it does me. I grew up there from 5th grade until last year. Most of the people that came have known me for that long. I just wanted to clear that up :)
Alicia and Cilla
Just like family~ Marie and Carmelo
One of my favorite little girls in the world.
Got to hold her in the hospital when she was born :)
It was very special to have the majority of my high school graduating class present!
David- Travis- Candace- Me- Brittany- Heidi- Heather- Danielle
Great Friends catching up
Enjoying a little bit of music :)
I wish I could have gotten a picture of everyone that came, but literally there were people everywhere! I was so honored and humbled that all these people took time out of their busy schedules to come over to catch up on life :) I could write pages of memories and wonderful things about each and everyone that came. Each one has played a very special part in making us who we are today. I thank you for always being there, caring, loving, and supporting us at each step of the way. You're the best!
Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirty. ~Sicilian Proverb
A good friend is a connection to life - a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world. ~Lois Wyse