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10:30 PM: We're home! We had a great trip, and as you can see, it's been a while since we have had internet access. I hope no one was too worried about us. Sophie's feeling just fine, just a few low-grade fevers. Unfortunately, Randall has been feeling horrible for days now. As Randall says, the Partin family traveling curse struck him instead of Sophie (I have to say I'm relieved about that, as much as I don't want him to suffer). He has had fevers and aches ever since last Friday morning (and had a pretty bad migraine on Thursday), and only has occasional moments of feeling okay. I hope now that we're home and not dealing with the effect of high altitude, he'll start to recover.

Two cute Sophie stories: (1) Friday afternoon, after the Commissiong ceremony (which was very nice), Barbara and Jeremy brought Randall's mom and the girls to their home in Albuquerque so Randall and I could have some time together. They had dinner together, and just before bedtime, Barbara served dessert. Sophie said (matter-of-factly), "I can't eat anything after 7:00, but I can have gum" so she happily chewed gum while everyone else enjoyed dessert. (2) The girls and I went to an outdoor concert Saturday night (Randall stayed home and rested). During one of the slower songs, Sophie was sitting in my lap, and we were rocking and snuggling. She gave me a big hug and said in my ear, "I'll always be with you, Mama." It brought tears to me eyes--I so much want her to always be with me, and I worry about the possibility that she won't. It would have been sweet coming from any child, but it was especially significant coming from her.

I had to call the doctor this morning when I realized that we forgot to give Sophie her 6MP (Mercaptopurine) last night. We had a late dinner, so we were going to wake her up to give it to her and forgot. That's the first time we've ever forgotten to give her chemo. I felt terrible! I called the doctor to find out whether I should give it to her that morning or just skip it until tonight's dose. He said to skip it, and the fact that she's only on a half-dose anyhow means she's not missing much. Still, being out of our routine was not totally a good thing.

We had such a good time seeing our friends in New Mexico and are very much looking forward to the day when we live there again instead of just visiting. It was good for Randall to connect with other pastors in the conference; everyone made us feel very missed and wanted. It's clear that there will be a place for him when we're in a position to go back, and we're thankful that they (and the conference in North Carolina) are willing to let us stay here another year while Sophie finishes treatment.

I have meetings at work for the next two days and may actually spend the night in Durham Tuesday night (haven't decided yet), so Randall will be a single dad for a couple of days. Luckily, Elisabeth is still in school through Thursday, and Sophie goes back to day care, so he will have some time to himself during the day.


Glad to hear you had a great trip & have returned safely home. Hope you enjoy your summer with the girls out of school. Have a great week. Love & prayers Deanna