Monday, January 21, 2008

Esther's 6th Birthday

It's really hard for me to believe our little surprise is 6 years old! Esther chose 'sledding' for her party, so we tromped through the snow to the park near the school. There we found a 'run' that reminded me of a video game...very narrow, fast, and closely lined with pine trees. We took turns flying down the hill on sleds and the kids loved it. I decided to go down with Eva to give her the experience of sledding. About 1/2 way down, I realized how foolish it was. I could NOT stop and we were just whizzing by pine trees. As an insurance investigator, one thing my dad taught me was to have a good emergency plan when in trouble. At that moment, I felt I needed one. So, as Eva and I slid down the hill, I wrapped myself around her totally. Should we hit a tree, maybe she would not be hurt. We made it safely down, but that was the last mommy/baby run for the day! We did have one mishap. Esther's little friend hit the tree on her side, but she later told her parents it was worth it because she had so much fun. After the sledding adventure, we came back home for homemade pizza, cokes (the biggest treat), and cake. So, Esther has begun life as a 6 year old!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Antalya and finishing off 2007

We enjoyed a wonder-ful holiday from school. Eating big breakfasts, enjoying fellowship with others, remembering the true reason for Christmas, and taking a short trip to Antalya were some of the highlights. On Christmas Eve we celebrated with 30 guests in our home. One photo I have included is a favorite because it shows (mostly!) our staff kids. It has been a real joy to add so many more teacher's kids to our list! Tradition for us, since we are away from family, is to take a trip between Christmas and New Year's. This year we went to Antalya. Though the high is only in the 60's F, it is a nice break from the snow and ice. We also visited some ruins surrounding the area. Olympos is an area with methane gas leaking from a rocky mountainside. When it hits the oxygen in the air, it burns. It is called the "Eternal Flame." Seafarers from years ago used these little fires on the mountain as a landmark.

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