We call Raia The Bag Lady, because she’s always dragging around at least one bag—more often a whole train of them. Today she asked me, “Mama, can I take my bags to America?” She also wanted to know if there are books in America. Both she and Jaan often check to be sure that we can and will take Asya with us. They’re very concerned about that. (Wasn’t baby Elisabeth Elliot left behind when her family moved to the States? Well, not all the way left behind, but I think they walked out without her? We’re not going to do that!) Jaan asks every morning if this is the day that we’re going to go on an airplane. He knows that Uncle Vanya is going to take us to the airport, so when Vanya dropped by today before Jaan was out of the bathtub, Jaan panicked.
We thought we would be able to by tickets today, but we still can’t. First we were waiting for Jaan’s new passport. It came back a while ago, but with a mistake, so we had to start that process over again. We had to have his passport to get exit visas, and we didn’t want to buy tickets without knowing what the dates on our exit visas would be. Now we have his new passport, and today Will went to Vladimir to apply for exit visas. It turns out that I don’t need one. I’m supposed to leave on the court decision, not a visa. But then what about the children? Will doesn’t need an exit visa, and they don’t usually do them for small children separate from parents. So, the people in Vladimir sent Will to go back and get something added into the court decision that will mention the children by name. That’s not supposed to take long. . . .
I also wanted to say THANK YOU for all the sweet comments, encouraging emails, and prayers going up for us! I’m sorry I can’t answer you all individually. We also appreciate the suggestions for our future ministry options. If you think of something like that, please do send it to us. We might just say a quick thank you now (or maybe not even have a chance to acknowledge it—sorry!) and file it for later, but it’s helpful to have those ideas on hand. And more than anything, we thank you for your prayers.