Last week I felt so triumphant when I got the last notification that the last of our entry visa applications was approved, and we have the final green light to travel to Africa (Uganda and Kenya) this summer, all eight of us.  Yes all eight.  I have to pinch myself sometimes when I think of this.  The journey to get here has not been for the weak of heart! 

It turns out that we happen to be leaving for Africa in the midst of a global yellow fever vaccine shortage.  Perfect timing.  Ha!  This means it was really difficult to find anyone who had the shot available around here and we had to have proof of vaccination before we could apply for the visas. 

For some reason it was really tricky to get appointments here in the desert, so my sister and I were able to scramble together a plan for Elle to jump in with her cousins in Utah (she had just started working there and those guys are going to Uganda with the same organization we are a little later).

Little (big!) triumph right there.
Then Max and Abby were able to travel an hour from where they were staying with her family in Texas to get theirs before they left for China (hallelujah!), and we got into our long-awaited appointment here with our three little girls.
Don’y you just love it when someone is just so incredible with your kids?  This lady was the most organized, kind and thorough woman ever and we fell in love with her.  
The only appointment we could get was early morning in the middle of finals week so we made the trek to get there as early as possible and she was ready for us.
She had us all laughing when the told Lucy to squeeze the bag of Dumdums when she got her shot 🙂

And then we were done, off to send in those certificates with what seemed like a million other pdf forms and blanks to fill out for every one of us. 

Abby and Max did theirs en route to China and one got messed up, the other got lost in the shuffle since Abby’s email got messed up, we had to re-do Grace’s since the credit card company was worried about fraud when we paid, and there were quite a few other hiccups.  But as of last week I had all those approval letters printed out and sometimes stuff like that can give you the biggest high!

Other than visas and yellow fever and agendas we are reading “Thirst” with Lucy and Claire and Lucy is INTO it I tell you!  The kids are working on reports on different facets of the things we’ll be doing and we are working on gathering school supplies in the village we will be building the school in in Uganda.  We are trying to take a whole slew of supplies so we’re open to any donations if people would like to help!  Let me know if you want more details.  We are so excited to be working with this awesome organization Family Humanitarian and can’t wait to get there all together.


  1. I was just in Uganda last summer teaching a bit at a university in Kampala. It's such a beautiful country. The people are so amazing and diverse, and everyone is so young! Did y'all have to also get the typhoid vaccine – that one is no joke!

  2. So fun, we just got home on Tuesday from Uganda and Kenya. It was the best trip.
    There is something special about Uganda! And Kenya was just as lovely. Different but lovely. Will you get to go on safari? Maasai Mara was Heaven!

  3. I have a few friends doing a service trip to Africa and to India this summer. Super fantastic that Miss Lucy is going with all of you as well!!! Can’t wait to see all your photos. Thank you for sharing.

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