Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Emily is doing very well.  She hasn't found the time to blog just yet.  She is taking lots of photos and soaking everything in.  We have a great time Skyping - what a blessing that is!  She is understanding a lot of what is being said if people speak slow enough.  She is reading Portuguese very well.  She did Math at school and was very proud of herself.  They are just coming back from what would be equivilent from our Winter/Christmas break.  School started up Monday.  They are all testing so it is a good time for her to watch and listen and get a feel for how things roll.  There are 17 kids in her age group.  They stay in the same classroom and the teachers rotate.  School goes from 7:30 to noon and they take a little food break around nine or ten.  She will begin seminary tomorrow and that is held at 6:00pm.  She said there will probably be just a few kids.  She met the Bishop and his family and the missionaries.  One of them is from Utah - Jordan area and he was so happy to speak to an American!  One of the first things he asked her was - do you play the piano? Even a little?  He will be getting transfered soon (he is the only one who plays) so they would love to have her play in Sacrament Meeting.  She isn't sure what she thinks about that but said she better start practicing :) 

My favorite part of our visit tonight was when she showed me a big handful of adorable handmade cards and letters.  They are all from the cute little girls who attend the school where she is attending.  She went around the classes yesterday and met the kids and teachers.  She will be helping teach English to the younger children.  They are in love with her and are treating her like a celebrity.  She said it is crazy how everyone there knows who she is and can't believe they are really meeting her. She doesn't know what to think about it and doesn't know how to deal with all the attention.  (I think it is great!)  She will do wonderful things there.  Most of the cards said cute little things like:

You is beautiful!
Love you Honey!

They love to use the word honey.  Tonight she asked Mariza what she would like her to call her.  Mariza said that was up to you. She chose to call her mae (can't make the correct accent symbol but I believe it is pronounced "my" ~ for mother.  Mariza got teary and said how will I ever say goodbye to you? Well, I told Emily that she was going to have to work on that becasue we would be needing her to come home to us! We are very proud of her.

Thanks everyone for your prayers and support. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

She Is On Her Way

She requested Dave's meat, dads homemade bread.  After a Cupcake send-off and many hugs and tears she is on her way to a brand new world.  The two concerns we had with her traveling alone were her connection in Dallas and wondering how she was going to man-handle her gigantic pieces of heavy luggage through customs in Brazil.  We were in line getting her boarding passes and checking her luggage - I asked the lady behind the counter if she was familiar with the Dallas Fort-Worth Airport.  She said, yes.  The next thing I remember was this sweet girl in line behind us saying, "Hey...I can walk her to her connection!  I have a three hour layover and I would love to help!" She must have thought I was a crazy lady because I said, "really?" and turned away to fight back a soon to be erupting volcano of tears.  I have been praying for angels to attend her on her journey to Brazil....and here we were standing next to one!

 This is the sweet blessing that made all the difference in her airport experience. (In the craziness of the moment, I have forgotten her name.) We watched the two of them chatting happily in line and go through security together.  It was nothing like we expected, but everything we could have hoped for.
 Em's new friend moved to Europe when she was 21 and lived there for almost 7 years.  She will be the perfect person to ease her into International travel. And just look at that smile! She will do great!!
 Saying goodbye was hard...but the world should be proud of us, we did it in a very graceful manner.  It's so wonderful to have the peaceful feeling we do.  It will be very exciting to hear about her travels and share this very exciting journey with her. (And hoping all goes well with her arrival in Brazil)
She plans on blogging about her experience here. We'll link from our sidebar.

* She arrived!!  About 4:30 am we got a phone call from Em.  She said everything went really well.  It was tricky managing her baggage but she made it!  They had to check her carry-on because it was a little bit too big.  She missed her toothbrush when she got off the plane, but everything was fine.  She was seated next to an older lady from Brazil who was so kind and sweet to her.  She told me she was very helpful when she was filling out the immigration papers. Alcides and Mariza (her Brazilian parents) were there to greet her with open arms.  We didn't think Mariza would be there because she has a daughter-in-law due any minute with a baby.  Good Luck, Emily!  We can't wait to hear your stories!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Everything Is Falling Into Place

The days of planning and preparation are drawing to a close.  Last night we began seriously packing the bags.  It is so very exciting! Emily has been making lists and organizing her belongings for weeks now. The suitcases are filling up fast!  She can check two 70lb bags and take a carry on and one personal item like a purse or back pack. 

 Jake gave us a tip from his mission days in Fiji.  Put the clothes in bags and vaccuum out the air.  We had a blast!  Instant freeze dried clothes and room to spare! We'll have good memories of our crazy "system" as we laughed and loaded the bags into her suitcase.
 This morning I made the girls Raspberry-Nuttella filled crepes.  We hear there are no raspberries to be found in Brazil.  (She won't lack for amazing fruit, however!) We were chatting about the day and making plans to start checking things off our list.  I reminded them that someone had to be here at all times to sign for the highly anticipated delivery of the VISA.
 We had no sooner cleared our plates from the table outside when the wonderful Fed Ex man pulled up into our driveway!  IT WAS HERE!  I was doing my typical happy dance of joy when the doorbell rang.  Of course by now I am tearing up with relief and excitement - but also because now it was all very real.  She is leaving.  I told Em she had to go to the door and sign...I was pulling myself together when I heard the man ask Em, "Did I see someone jumping for joy in there?"  I had to go explain myself.  He was thrilled to hear our story.  He loves his job and expecially loves exciting days like this.  He couldn't have been more sweet and enthused for Emily's we all are.   Life is good.

 Opening the envelope.

 She holds in her hands her passport which includes her student visa.
 Good for one year.
Many miles to cover in the next 72 hours.  
We are grateful this beautiful summer morning for many things!

Monday, July 18, 2011

What A Ride!

In no real paticular are some of the things that have been keeping us busy this month!

Kyra, Anda, Natalie, Sabey & Em
Emily's Mia Maid Class

 This is Claudia, a sweet lady who was visiting 
our neighbors from Brazil. 
She was gracious enough to come over many afternoons and help Em 
with Portuguese...and Emily helped her with English.  
Fast friends.

LTC ~ Sweetest group of young women! Love them!

 Camber & Em had some beach time at Hyrum Dam.
I love this photo!

Finding out this really exciting news!!
Congrats to Jake and Lindsey!
Molly will be a wonderful big sister.

Emily had a gum graft on July 7th.  
NOT the most fun to experience but she is healing up really well.

 Mark & Jake rode the Cache Valley MS Fund Raiser Century.  
They loved it!

Emily enjoyed a week (July 11-15)at USU-EFY.  
She loved having her cousin Reed and his friend, Tanner 
up from Payson to attend...and 
her friend Katie! They had a great week!

Over the fourth of July we had the Flinders Family Reunion at Mutual Dell.  It was a great time together.  Zip-line, Minute-To-Win-It, treasure hunts, kickball, great food and the best company.  
We love our family!

Go Aunt Shelley! 

Zip-Line Fun!

Minute To Win It

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Half Century Celebration!!

Because he was turning 50... he wanted to start the day out riding 50!
Mark & Jake left early in the morning to ride up Emigration-Strawberry Canyon in Southeast Idaho.
It was a glorious ride even though it was quite an incline...3700 feet. 
They had a wonderful time.  The canyon was gorgeous and the morning was beautiful!

Looking very happy!


The Thursday before his birthday he found a surprise in one of his exam rooms! 
Janell had flown down to surprise him for his birthday!  It was so wonderful! 

Her other motivation to come down and visit was to spend some time with Emily before she leaves.
We went down to the Farmer's Market and enjoyed looking around and finding some fresh greens for the birthday dinner. These two girls are both unique and beautiful, just like all of our children.  For being so far apart in age (about 12 years)...they are also very much alike in many ways.  We certainly love our children.

 Molly was fast friends with her auntie.
How could you not be?

 Soon it was time for the birthday dinner.  His short order was ~ everyone make something yummy!
Davis (who was MIA in the photos, wasn't feeling well :( made awesome baked beans.  Camber slid through the door from work just in time to use the watermelon baller, Lindsey threw together giant stuffed mushrooms, Janell made our favorite salsa, I marinated chicken to grill for the sandwiches (and homemade granola earlier in the day) and Emily topped it all off with an incredible Chocolate Malt Ice Cream Cake!  We eat very well around this place.

Molly's part was to demostrate how to eat corn on the cob...see her eyeing Papa's?

 Wait for mom to put the handles in and then lean in for a really good grip.

 Smoosh the cob against your face as tight as you can so butter and salt are well applied.

 Take a break for some refreshing icewater and go at it again!

 It is delicious!
Hurray for summer!!

 Happy Birthday to special man we dearly love!!
Hope all your dreams come true.
You certainly help ours become realities :)
The cake was perfectly wonderful, Em!!