On Sunday my parents threw Scott and I a lovely going away party last night. We still do not have an official date of departure. Our travel company notified us and said that by the end of this week we should have our e-tickets and visas! We were also told that we should expect to leave between August 6-12. Which means we have only two weeks before we leave – ahhhhh! So excited, so nervous, and so overwhelmed. With all of those emotions it was great to have an evening solely to relax and chat with all the people I love. It was great to have a bunch of our friends and family there to wish us good luck, ask questions, and give us lots of hugs. We couldn’t have asked for a better way to say goodbye:

In good Gerhardt family fashion, everyone held hands while my father prayed for our safety and thanked God for our wonderful family and all the people we support us. It was really touching. Then, after the prayer we all sang the Johnny Appleseed song – Don’t know it? Look it up!

My grandparents left right around dinner time and so my grandma was getting really emotional – which made me get really emotional and so all of our eyes began to fill with tears. As we are standing there hugging and on the verge of tears, my mother reminds all of us that we will see each other on Sunday one more time for my grandpa’s birthday!! My grandma quickly dried her tears and decided that she was going to save them for Sunday : )

After dinner my parents surprised us with the best cake:

The top says “I love you” in Arabic and the bottom says “Let’s go” in Arabic and in the middle is the United Arab Emirate’s flag. Also, the night would not be complete without my father making everyone laugh! This time he took out his fake teeth : )

What a great going away party.