Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Three Hundred and Sixty-Five

One year ago today, we arrived in Turkey!

It has been a year of great blessings and great challenges.

It is impossible to capture each and every experience, lesson learned, emotion, and milestone during this year.  Here’s our past year in numbers:

  • One Year
  • Three hundred and sixty-five Days
  • Two Base HousesAfter discovering that the bathroom in our first house was covered in mold-common in such a humid climate- we moved to house number two.
  • Six Castles explored (Snake Castle, Anavarza Castle, Tumlu Castle, Black Castle, and two Yumurtalik Castles)
  • One monumental first step taken by Peter
  • One very fun 1st birthday party for Peter
  • Dozens of splashes during our 1st trip to the Mediterranean Sea
  • One tasty cheeseburger from a McDonald’s in Turkey…that just happened to be Peter’s very first taste of the golden arches
  • Two mice in our house...one of these little critters decided to make itself at home in our kitchen while I attempted to make my very first Thanksgiving dinner.  We caught the little guy just in time!
  • Three trips by the exterminator…ah, the ants and termites
  • Two nights in a Cappadocia cave hotel…near the hometown of St. Basil!
  • Twelve flights to and from new adventures
  • Two trips to a Turkish ER…one for Peter's mysterious bug bite infection and one for Roseola
  • One ambulance ride for Peter (when he had Roseola) followed by Three nights in a Turkish Hospital…the doctors and nurses took such good care of our little man during his bout with Roseola! And about a month and a half later, One hernia surgery in Germany (for Peter).  I’ve learned how tough our little man is this year!  And I’ve also experienced God’s intense love and care when life gets challenging.   Peter has been blessed with the best doctors and wonderful recoveries and is stronger and healthier than ever! 
  • Countless wonderful friends who have been with us through it all (both across the street and across the ocean!)
  • One beautiful handmade Turkish carpet purchased
  • Three trips to Tarsus, Saint Paul’s hometown…we love living down the road from such an inspiring hero’s home!
  • Six Superbowl champs visiting Incirlik…Peter and his Daddy were both thrilled to see the Packers Champs here!
  • Fifty-four blog posts published
  • Four countries visited (Turkey, Germany, France, Israel)
  • One boat ride on the Sea of Galilee…one of my favorite places in the world!
  • One kosher Happy Meal from a McDonald's in Israel
  • Four Sesame Street characters visiting Incirlik…including Peter’s favorite: “Mel-mo!” (Yep, you guessed it!  Elmo!)
  • Eleven months (how long it took me to muster up the courage to drive off base)
  • Three hundred and sixty-five days without a cell phone (I am surprised at how little I miss it!)
  • Three hundred and sixty-five days without a Target Store & Runza Restaurant (I am surprised at how much I miss them!)
  • One ancient city conquered with a Trojan Horse…we loved our trip to Troy!
  • One journey to Mary’s house in Ephesus…another one of my favorite places in the world!
  • Two wonderful weeks with my Mom, Dad, and brothers in Turkey! I am so happy they visited us! 
  • Zero squirrels and rabbits here in Turkey…it feels so odd!  Peter doesn’t know what a squirrel is!  Instead, we have lots of fun and unique creatures, like geckos, snails, bats, giant spiders and hedgehogs!
  • Fourteen Saints’ tombs visited (Plus, Christ’s EMPTY tomb!)
  • Twenty-nine Saints’ hometowns visited

And some are just too many to count...

  • Lots of wonderful, sunny hours at the park with Peter (we have lots of parks in our neighborhood...and lots of hours of sunshine in Turkey!)
  • Tons of on-line orders from Amazon and Old Navy (yes, our selection here on base is a little limited…and it’s always fun to get mail!)
  • Dozens of cups of Cay (pronounced: Chai...Turks love their black tea! In Turkey, you are offered a cup of tea wherever you go...in a store, a beauty salon, and after every meal!)
  • Hundreds of calls and emails home
  • Dozens of trips to Starbucks (We do have a Starbucks on base! It's perfect when you need a little mocha-flavored taste of home!)
  • Many Turkish Bazaars and Markets (my favorite purchases: a Turkish tea pot and lots of fresh produce!)
  • Tons of Turkish flashcards
  • Countless number of times Dan and I have been mistaken for a Turk (until we open our mouths)
  • Lots of lots of kabobs! 
One year ago...

Here's Peter one year ago today!  He was a great traveler on that long overseas flight!

On our journey to Turkey, we met another Incirlik-bound family!  They have become our good friends. 
Their son, William, is one of Peter's favorite friends. 
Here are the new little buddies in their pj's at a layover in Germany.  They've both grown so much!

Fast forward a few months to Peter's first McDonald's cheeseburger...in TURKEY! : )

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