how to say goodbye for 3 years

i can’t believe we made it through
the dreaded goodbye! it feels
so much better to have spent a
memorable + lovely week with
family and now have the goodbye
over with. here’s how we say
goodbye for 3 years… :( 
1. give memorable gifts…
i had this map of our family painted by
i am so in love with it and knew it was the
perfect gift to give them as they leave.
it can represent that although our family will
be apart, our hearts are together in san francisco,
salt lake city, & south africa. all good places!
2. spend time in favorite places.
we made sure to spend every second
possible in millcreek canyon, our go-to
trails where we’ve run together so many times…
including the morning of my wedding, and now the
morning that they left! it’s a canyon full of memories
and i love this sight above of my sweet mom ahead
of me leading the way in millcreek. slice of heaven!
3. pause & savor. i hoped and hoped this week together
would go slow, and it did. we soaked up every second and
took time to stop and enjoy and be together. my mom and i
went out to some favorite places {including citris grill, of course}
and it gave time for me to give her some gifts and have some
good convos before such a big change. i gave my mom this perfect
quote, bloom where you are planted. this is the best
mantra for them to have in their new house in johannesburg,
and something they will be so good at — blooming and doing
well where they have been planted. SA is lucky to be getting them!
4. focus on the adventure! although we’re sad to be
saying goodbye for 3 years, it’s a pretty cool thing my
parents are going to do … and in a pretty amazing place!
we celebrated this by going to the zoo’s new “african
savannah” to tell the littles all about papa + yaya’s new
adventure in africa! i love their monkey + tiger hats, haha
5. play! instead of being sad and focusing
on the impending goodbye, we played hard all
week and had so much fun as a family. we did the
classic “dunn olympics” organized by my brother,
and the competition took our minds off any goodbyes!
from ping pong to basketball to volleyball, we had
some good games and fun times this week.

6. give things to remember…my parents
are so cute and did some darling things for
us and the grandkids to remember them by!
one cute thing was a book my mom made full
of pictures of our family…it explains where they
are going and why, and all the things they can’t
wait to do with the grandkids when they are back.
it was cute to see the little ones reading the books
and seeing pictures of themselves! i hope they read
them a lot and remember my parents! my dad also
ordered some “special edition” goldfish, haha.
they are maddie & tagg’s favorite and he put their
photo on the front + a picture of them on the back.
it’s the little things! i loved these thoughtful gifts.

7. fill up every second up to leaving…
even the morning of the goodbye, we all met
for a hike {grandeur peak in millcreek canyon}
and then made breakfast in the canyon all together.
it helped us enjoy every second up to the goodbye!

8. DESSERT! my mom knows boston cream pie
makes everything better, so she baked one up
the morning before leaving {yes-she is superwoman} and
left a fresh one for us to dive into after she left.
why does dessert make everything better? :)

9. squeeze tight– we hugged as tight as we could
when it came time for the actual goodbye. it’s hard to
know we won’t physically be with them for a long time, so
this is when the waterworks show started. hello tears tears tears!

10. retail therapy. after saying goodbye, chase took
me shopping and to get one of our favorite comfort foods.
he’s a good one. nothing like retail therapy to feel better!
the sweetest friend meg also dropped off a cute care
package with tissues and treats because she’s the best.
this all helped, but i already miss them so much!
“family ties run deeper than the ocean, 
higher than the mountains, & across continents…
and nothing can really change that.”
here’s to a new chapter, visits, facetime,
and a quick 3 years…or should i say 36 months!
see their farewell here, moving here,
and when they first opened their call here.

'how to say goodbye for 3 years' has 15 comments

  1. June 23, 2014 @ 4:01 pm Katie Arruda

    This made me tear up ! What beautiful gifts. Good luck to your parents on their new adventure!


    • June 23, 2014 @ 4:41 pm emi

      thanks sweetest lady! you’re the best!


  2. June 23, 2014 @ 5:32 pm BLovedBoston

    Oh girlie – you guys will be facetiming all the time!! The bright side is I bet you already have a trip planned to see them soon!!


  3. June 23, 2014 @ 6:13 pm spiffykerms

    Oh this post made me tear up. I can’t imagine saying so-long to your parents for three years. Do you think you’ll be able to fly over there for a visit within that time they’re there for?


    • June 23, 2014 @ 11:35 pm emi

      you’re so sweet. i know, it was hard to swallow!! we will definitely be visiting, i can’t wait for that! xo


  4. June 23, 2014 @ 6:16 pm Jen

    Hugs!!!! Here is hoping the time flies by!


    • June 23, 2014 @ 11:36 pm emi

      thanks sweetest!


  5. June 23, 2014 @ 6:19 pm K&R

    i would seriously die if i had to say bye to my mom for three years. i’m sure this was hard, but luckily they are doing something so awesome that its worth it!


  6. June 23, 2014 @ 9:55 pm Ashley R

    Aww how hard- but it sounds like you did it right! p.s. My husband and I met working at the Noodles and Co in Orem, so I definitely know it can make everything better. <3


    • June 23, 2014 @ 11:36 pm emi

      i love that! it is the BEST :))


  7. June 24, 2014 @ 2:48 am Abigail Jensen

    Don’t mind me, I’m just crying!! I don’t even know them, but the way they are absolutely glowing would let anyone know they’re going to be so fantastic! Those elders and sisters are so lucky to have them looking over them the next three years. xoxox


    • June 24, 2014 @ 4:07 pm emi

      you’re so so cute. thanks for the sweetest comment!


  8. June 25, 2014 @ 10:31 am Laura Cristina

    yup, i teared up! haha! I loved the idea of this blog post! Oh and don’t worry 3 years will fly by!
    ps. Your mom should start a blog ;)



  9. June 25, 2014 @ 2:53 pm Brittany

    Beautiful. What an amazing family you have.


  10. June 30, 2014 @ 5:30 pm Linda Dunn

    Unbelievable! The timing for me to see your post is perfect. As I have just arrived in our mission home and missing you. Thanks for capturing all of this for us. It is wonderful!


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