Friday, July 27, 2012

We aren't coming home on Sunday :(

Well, thus far, all of our paperwork has come through, but today, we hit our snag. Four families, including ours, found out this afternoon that the Consulate's office computers had gone down, and that our children would not be issued their visas today. Since the office is closed until Monday, it will be at least Monday before the computers are up again and we can hope to get our visas. SOOOO we have spent the last several hours making new flight arrangements, cancelling hotels and van rides to Honk Kong, and double checking that we all can stay here until next week.

We've been advised not to leave China until Tuesday, so it looks as if we will be flying from Hong Kong on Wednesday. Overall we are adding 3 extra days of hotel stay and food costs and we are having to pay cancellation fees for our hotel in Honk Kong, and at least a $500.00 change fee for our plane tickets. In addition, we will have taxi costs if we leave the hotel, which we will, anytime between now and Wednesday.

We've re booked our flights for Wednesday, August 1st, and hopefully will be landing in Memphis at 5:58 P.M. Wednesday night. We are on the same flight we'd have been on Sunday. If our visa isn't issued Monday, we will need the support of our state reps and as many phone calls from the US as we can get in addition to being physically present in the consulate Tuesday to have any hope of making our flights Wednesday. We are in prayer that God's plan for us is to come home Wednesday, and that our visa will be issued Monday morning without further delay.

In the meantime, we are trying to keep our heads up, and make the best of the situation. God knew that this was the plan, and we have faith that He knows exactly why we've been delayed, and that He is taking care of all it! Thank you for your continued support and prayers. This is difficult for all of the families here, but also very difficult for our children and loved ones at home. Please pray for them that this additional time will pass quickly!

Speaking of passing, I can't remember if it was here or on Facebook, but someone asked about an update on the penny and Andy. As far as we know, he still has NOT passed the penny, so we will be looking at an endoscopic procedure to remove that as soon as we get home. Since we won't get back until Wednesday night at the earliest, and school starts the following Monday, I'm not sure if we will need to do that the day or two after we get home, or if it will require him to miss a day or two of school the first week. Please also remember him and this whole situation in your prayers!

We did have some positive things happen today before the chaos of the afternoon. We were finally able to go to Shamain Island shopping, and we found lots of great stuff! I can't mention it all here as many items are gifts for our friends and family, but some of the items included a hand painted wooden comb for Annabella, a silver brush and mirror set, a cloisonne ornament for us, a Henan province doll for Annabella, and a few jewelry items for her as well. We also got a pack of Guanzhou postcards and we've been to or seen most of the things pictured which was pretty cool.

With the craziness of the evening, we weren't able to go to dinner, and the pizza delivery service and Starbucks had shut down the food service, so tonight we had dinner from the 7-11. We made a cup of ramen noodles for Annabella, with all the liquid drained, and Greg and I had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Thankfully I'd brought over some single serving peanut butter cups, and we haven't eaten them all. So we bought a half loaf of bread and small jar of blueberry jelly and voila.... dinner was served! We got some pretty cute pictures of Annabella stuffing her mouth full of noodles, and I'll try to upload those in a bit.

While we were on the island today, we were fortunate enough to meet two Christian shop keepers. One met her husband in the Christian church, and she showed us her Bible that was written in both English and Chinese. She had many different Christian items in her shop, and we purchased a wooden plaque with a Bible verse engraved in both Chinese and English. She gave me a necklace with a cross that looks like jade, and gave us a bookmark with the service times to the Christian church and an invitation to visit. They have services in Mandarin, Cantonese, and English, and we've decided as a group to attend church on the island this Sunday.

Well, I'm pretty beat, so I will try to get this post uploaded before I fall asleep on the computer. Thank you for your continued prayers and for all of your prayers for all of our travel group. We need them more than ever now, and I know that God is faithful in answering them! We can't wait to be home, and to begin the next part of our journey as a family of six. And I know the rest of our friends here feel the same. God bless!!!

The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace. Romans 8:6

Shaiman island
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Judy, the first Christian shop keeper we met

a giant marble chess piece

chess board


more pictures from the island

backside of the Christian church

front of the Christian church

Annabella lined up all of her stacking cups in the window

eating supper

1 comment:

  1. God bless you for your sweet, Christ centered view on this change. Change truly does cause us to point to the Changeless one. All of us who have been there and waiting anxiously for travel home to get that China baby in their american bed KNOW this is HarD. we are praying for you and yours in China and stateside. Love and prayers, and hugs from ava to annab! cathy hill