We were present for the Bellevue church's Missions Sunday on our first Sunday there, which was very special. We also visited almost all of the home groups during our time with Bellevue, shared meals with different members, had meetings with the elders and missions committee, and got to do some shopping and explore a little of Seattle. We had decided, for various reasons, to change our residency to Washington state, so we also had a few "paperwork" errands to take care of during our time there. We registered to vote and got our WA state driver's licenses. I was continually amazed at how easy and efficient government offices were in the States in comparison to Ecuador! It's all a matter of perspective, folks! After getting all that taken care of, we were able to go to the public library and get library cards. The kids loved the library, and we definitely made good use of it during our time there!
The church had arranged for a short-term rental house for us during our time there, which was a VERY big blessing! It was nice to have a place of our own to come home to at the end of the day, and it meant we could have friends over for dinner or even to stay the night. We reconnected with several different friends and relatives during our time in Washington and of course Oregon!
Here are pictures of the highlights of our time in the PNW:
|I got to reconnect with my friend Abby, a fellow MK from Kenya! It had been over 20 years since we had seen each other.|
|Game night with the young adult group at Bellevue Church of Christ|
|Our former teammate, Jordan, happened to be back from Angola on her furlough at the same time as us. She flew all the way to Seattle to spend a few days with us. We explored downtown Seattle together.|
|Highlights of our day in downtown Seattle included a ride on the Great Wheel with an awesome view of the Puget Sound, and a visit to the original Starbucks and Pike Place market.|
|Elizabeth met her Auntie Ronda for the first time.|
|We took the ferry to Whidbey Island one day...|
|...to welcome cousin Johnny home from his Navy deployment! We are so proud of him.|
|We spent a very cold day at the zoo!|
|We paid a visit to Cousins Dave and Kaye who live north of Seattle, about an hour from the Canadian border.|
|We got to attend the Dickens Carolers pre-season Christmas concert, hosted by the Bellevue Church of Christ.|
|While in Portland, we got to have lunch with my cousin Candace and her son Cory.|
|We celebrated Thanksgiving with Auntie Ronda in Portland. The next day, we had Christmas with her!|