This summer has been/is flying by fast. So many different things have happened, it's been hard to keep up with blogging. So, I'm going to do my best to do a brief recap with some pictures just to get caught up to this month. Here goes!
Visit from Family
Many of you know Olivia's mom, Nancy, was here for a good part of the summer helping the McDougles, but we were also treated with Olivia's dad coming to visit. It was great having them both here in Kharkov with us. They have both been to Kharkov two times before, but both of those times were in winter months, so they were able to experience the "prettier side" of Kharkov this time!
Pregnancy Paperwork Complications
A major thing that turned our world upside down over the summer was finding out Olivia didn't have the right paperwork needed to deliver here in Ukraine. As we set about getting this paperwork, we encountered many obstacles because she was supposed to have this paperwork early in her pregnancy, not 31 weeks into it. Many of the hospitals did not want to help us because she would be too much of a liability to them since they had not been able to monitor her care from the beginning. Thankfully, things worked out and we found both a prenatal hospital who would take her on (just down the road from where we live), as well as a delivery hospital here in Kharkov. Although our "plan" was to deliver in Kiev at a European hospital there, we ended up having to scratch that and agree to deliver here in Kharkov. We have been praying throughout our whole pregnancy that God would grant us wisdom with where to deliver and the right doctor and we have no doubt that He answered our prayers - just not in the way we were expecting! Caleb is due on September 4th - just a week and a half away!
In July we headed to Budapest, Hungary to renew our visas. We are all here as missionaries on one-year visas which come up for renewal at the end of September. At that time we have to leave the country to renew them. Since this date fell so close to Caleb's due date, we decided we needed to renew them early. So, we took a trip to Budapest where we turned in our applications, enjoyed seeing sights, watched movies in English in the theater, and ate some good food. We came back after being there almost a week and David returned the next week to pick them up for us. By the way - yes, we found Dr. Pepper there and it was soooo good! We were even nice teammates and brought some back to surprise our team (see picture below at the team retreat).
Every six months, our team tries to get out of the city and spend a few days together planning and evaluating. We looked at what God has been doing here through us and the other Christians here, but also dreaming and planning of what lies ahead. We spent this time at a place just about 40 minutes outside of Kharkov. It was very comfortable and also had a pool and a small mini putt-putt that we were able to enjoy.