Day 348: I Am Home



It’s weird to think I woke up in my Holland house this morning, and I’ll be going to bed in my Sunnyvale home in a couple hours.




It’s 2:30 am Holland time and just before dinner at home. I’m feeling a bit delirious, yet trying to stay awake for at least a couple more hours.


I am happy to be home again, although I have to be honest and say I felt really confused coming back. I am feeling the transition, feeling sad as I let go of my house, community and friends in Holland and leaving Jeff behind for two more weeks. And then happy as can be, seeing my parents and April and my home and my neighbors and the neighborhood friends dropping by.

Julie came by for a cup of tea and biscuits, and the kids walked to the park and went swimming and rode bikes like we never left. They just picked up where they left off almost a year ago.

Mom made a pot of her spaghetti sauce and the whole house smelled good and welcoming.


I cried as we were landing at SFO, afraid to land and seeing the airplane crash remains still on the runway. I felt really sad, thinking of what I am leaving behind and a bit anxious about the transition back to life as it used to be but isn’t anymore the same. I know it’ll all come together, as it always does…just breathe and relax, right? It’s all good. Life is good!!

And I have the most amazing friends and family all around the world now. Can’t wait to catch up again! xoxo



12 thoughts on “Day 348: I Am Home

  1. Welcome back state side but I can relate to your emotions. Just two weeks each time in the Netherlands makes me cry coming home because I am so drawn to the city of Amsterdam and the villages around it. I am so glad you had the one year experience and what an awesome gift to give your kids. They will never forget that! I am glad you all landed safely and loved seeing the KLM plane…I love flying KLM!! I hope you all get the rest you need and adjust with a smooth transition 🙂

  2. Welcome Home! You will go back and visit the Netherlands and see that it is all still there and just as fun as before. It might be a tad bit changed but that is normal. I go back to Prague and there is all is, just as it has been for 100 of years. Now, can you please explain the use of the names Holland and the Netherlands and what it is and isn’t!? Oh, and maybe throw in how Dutch relates to all of that. So unclear to me. 🙂 I obviously was not paying attention in History class the day they discussed this.

  3. Dear, Dear Adriana, For this past year you and your family have been a wonderful and most enjoyable part of my life! I have traveled with you all over the world and experienced life in Amsterdam with you and your many friends. You took me with you as you weathered the storms of living aboard and dealing with all that comes for you and your family. I went to school with the kids and you as you navigated a safe and happy place for your family. Time and again I saluted your wisdom and attitude toward the challenges that you all faced and I know that there are always those challenges wherever we live. You are amazing and I am so happy I was able to follow you throughout this past year. I have learned so much from you! So it is that I want to thank you for the huge effort that you put into this wonderful blog. I have loved the stories and the pictures. You have taken me places I will not be able to go and I’m so grateful! But even more than that you have shared your life and I feel so blessed to have traveled this journey with you! So WELCOME HOME!!!! AND…will you be continuing to blog? You have become such a part of my life that I don’t know what I’ll do without my Adriana daily read! I’ve loved what you have done and I thank you with all my heart! Grace

    Sent from my iPad

    • Grace…can I give you a big, huge hug?? Your words touched my heart. I feel like you just summarized the highlights of my year, so gracefully and beautifully. I didn’t even know you were following my blog. Thank you for your heartfelt comments. I loved reading your words and look forward to seeing your beautiful smile again!! Lots of love to you!! xo Adriana

  4. Adriana: Best of luck with your transition home. Thanks so much for welcoming me into your circle just as you were leaving. I look forward to a Shepherd visit to California or a Hartley visit to Georgia when we return. Please keep in touch and keep writing. Best, Tift

    • I was hoping we’d get a chance to play tennis together! We’ll just have to wait for a reunion in Georgia or California or someplace in between! Thank you for the well wishes and all the best to you and Jeff and the girls!! 😉

  5. Dear Adriana, You will be missed. It was a great pleasure to have you in our lives the past year. I hope you are going to keep up with your blog. Happy transition to the Hartley’s.
    Your dutch friend forever, Josiene

    • Joseine – I know we’ll see each other again as you promised Ben a trip to California! 😉 Thanks for making my year in Holland so memorable and sharing your kids and friendship with me and my family. I love my new Dutch friends!! Send me picture updates via WhatsApp or Facebook private messages! I love seeing you guys and knowing what you’re doing! Tot ziens! xo

  6. Welcome home Hartleys! I echo every word of Grace’s comments–your travels and adventures have been a daily part off my life and I thank you for that. I too hope that you will continue your blog–life will be every bit as interesting back in the states. One of the things I most enjoy is seeing how the kids have grown and matured during this year, not only physically (on photos), but also through the experiences they have had that will be a major foundation of the adults they will become. The confidence to try new things, to adapt to situations beyond their control, to try new foods, make new friends, speak new languages, visit new places and experience different cultures, connect with family across the globe, and the list goes on and on. What a wonderful gift to your children. I can’t wait to catch up with you in person. Love, Kris

    • Thanks for sharing the journey with me Kris. I’ve enjoyed your comments and insights along the way, knowing that you were with me in spirit. It’s nice to know that someone besides my mama was reading along with me. 😉 We did have an amazing journey and writing as we went will surely help me to remember and reflect as we move on to the next busy phase of life. I’m so glad that you’ve enjoyed my blog and have inspired me to continue writing…at least for awhile while we transition and have things to share. I wrote every night – usually very late, around midnight… I’m thinking I might want to share some highlights from various trips – maybe sharing more details and history and learn something too. Thank you for writing and sharing your comments. Can’t wait to see you again and hear all about graduation and what’s new with your family! Miss you. xo

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