Monday, April 18, 2011

Turning Twenty-Seven in Turkey

Last week I celebrated my 27th birthday.
My friends and family- both near and far- made it an unforgettable day!

Receiving cards, phone calls, and packages from the States means so much!  It makes me feel like we're not so far away after all.  It is so comforting to know that our loved ones back home are thinking of us.  Thank you, everyone, for the calls, cards, packages, and Facebook messages!  I treasure them! 

During Lent, our chapel on Base hosts "Lenten Lunches" on Wednesdays.  It's a chance to share a meal and listen to a reflection on Lent.  My friend, Katrina, and I volunteered to bring the lunch.  I brought two big pots of soup and Katrina made a salad and yummy birthday cupcakes!  What a fun friend! 

Dan really spoiled me this year!  He is so good at making me feel special on my birthday.  This year, he ordered me a beautiful cake, gave me dvd's that reminded us of fun past movie dates, and the grand finale...he surprised me with freshwater pearl earrings that he secretly bought while we were in Germany!  Way to go, Dan!

A friend of mine, Beth, shares a birthday with me!  Several of our wonderful friends had a birthday brunch for us!  These girls are so much fun!  I don't know what I'd do without them!

Angelica, Beth, Wendi, and Sarah
Last night, our dear Turkish friend, Sefer, invited us to his home for a birthday dinner.  Sefer and his family are such genuine, generous souls.  We enjoyed a huge feast with lots of fun company!  Sefer and his wife, Fatma, invited their daughter, son, daughter-in-law, & three granddaughters to join us!  Even though Sefer is the only one that speaks English, we felt truly welcome and at home thanks to their wonderful hospitality!

Turkish food is delicious!  What a beautiful meal!
Peter felt right at home and quickly made friends with Sefer's granddaughters.  It's amazing to watch them play together. Cultural and language barriers don't matter to children.  Though they couldn't speak the same language, they took such joy in just playing together. 

Sefer's youngest granddaughter, is a spunky, happy 4 year old who proudly counted to ten in English for us, bounced energetically around the room, and whispered secrets in my ear ( Turkish...I wish I knew what she was so excited to tell me!). 

Peter is shy around big groups of people,
but once he's comfortable, he's Mr. Personality. 
As you can see, he was completely at ease around Sefer's family! 

And last but not least, the cake!  

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