Friday, January 28, 2011

2010 in Pictures

Well, at long last, I am finally ready with my pictures post for 2010. This is my third straight year for these posts. You can click here to see 2008 in photos. Or you can click here to see 2009 in photos. I love looking back at these posts! They are a way to summarize our last year as a family in quick snapshots.

So here we go:
I am so excited that one of my very dearest friends, Kristi, can get away from her own three children and join us for Elijah's first birthday party. She brings swords for the boys (All brothers need something to beat each other with.) She also gives the boys their first pairs of rain boots to the boys. (All kids needs rain boots.)


Joan joins me for a visit in January and February. Here we are celebrating Keenan's African Themed Birthday Party in attire from our nigerian adventure.

Kristi was right. As early spring rolls into town, boots are all the rave in our house! Both of these pairs are from Kristi.

Keith and AD come to visit with cousin Charleigh. AD has to go back to work, but Keith stays another week and helps me manage all there kiddos and dog while JB is on a hard rotation.


As the boys are both walking securely, I start to take more "risks" venturing away from home 1 on 2. Here I am at an Easter Hunt with both boys by myself. (My friend Robyn talked me into going!) Neither boy, however, thought this whole bunny idea was very cool.

Nice weather begins to emerge in the Destin area, and for the first time, we take both boys, now walking, to the beach! We no longer have a baby and a little boy but instead are starting to see the "twin" part of "Irish" emerging.

With twin boys comes twin adventure. (This did not end well.)

April is a jam-packed month. JB is out-of-town. John has to go to San Antonio, So my goddaughter Jessie decides to come and help me for a bit. While JB is home with the boys, I drive north. I meet my friend Shea at a hotel for the evening. Our old friend Heather joins us for dinner. The next morning I pick up Jessie who has driven with her mom. The hand-off occurs and we had back to Eglin.

Jessie helps me all week as JB leaves for San Antonio. After a week, Jessie drives with me to Disney World! JB flies into the Orlando airport. We pick him up. Josh and Sarah and their kiddos come to Disney at the same time! It's a grand time.

Here is our group in front of the Magic Castle. The best we could do!

All the work of getting to Disney World was worth it when we saw how excited our little Isaac was to see Mickey Mouse (although you can't tell it from this photo.)

We stayed with John's sister Katie and her husband Eddie. We would spend our mornings at the park and then our afternoons resting back at Katie's.

We also took in a day at Sea World! Jessie flew out of Orlando back home. JB, me, and the kiddos continued on to South Florida for the rest of our vacation.

The closest we could come to a picture of Grampa K. with all four grandkids.

We spent a ton of time in the garden JB's parents and his sister Elizabeth have created behind their house. Shows what you can do with just a little bit of space and a lot of love. Isaac LOVED sending the lady bugs off to help the plants.

The highlight of my April and probably my entire year was that in April, I flew out to New Mexico and ran a sprint triathlon with my dear friend Kristi! This will be one of my major adult accomplishments and I truly help that Kristi and I can do this again some day again in the future. I was in the best shape I have been in since college. I had hoped to do another one in the months to follow but some stress fractures side-lined me.


Before life takes us to Turkey, we decide to take a family vacation to Washington State -- a place we hope to buy land in one day. You can see my big boot here as I recover from my triathlon-induced injuries. What a beautiful week.

We do some travelling on our own but also stay with our great friends the Gustafsons for a few days! Man I miss this family so much. They were such a blessing to us at Eglin.

After our return from Washington, we begin our good byes at Eglin. The wifia -- a group that sustained me without measure during my three years at Eglin has our farewell at Sarah's house.

It really was a happy day! Isaac and Bri celebrate their birthday together at Cherokee Park. Isaac is now 2 and Bri 20!

We attend our friend Kendra's wedding -- such a joy to watch people see an end to year's of waiting.

My Dad spends his traditional teacher-time-off with us in Eglin as we pack up and begin preparing for the movers to come.

This is it! Graduation from residency! The time has come to say good bye to Eglin forever. JB's parents join us for the ceremony.

Our family at graduation.

The moving begins. Can you believe all this stuff will go over on a ship to Incirlik with us?

After we moved out of Eglin, we headed to South Florida for some time with family before our adventure began. JB and I took a short break away for the weekend in Key West.
We got to spend some time with JB's last living grandparent -- his Dad's Mom Theresa. As of today (January, 2011) she is sill alive but we know her days are numbered, and we were glad the boys got to see her again.

Spending time with Papa is always fun!

We also got to hang out with cousin Charleigh quite a bit as well! We had a great time (despite that terrible South Florida heat.)
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It was time to make the drive from South Florida to D.C. where the military flight would take us to Turkey. We stopped night 1 at a hotel and then stopped and saw my childhood bosom friend Michelle, her husband Hershal, and their beautiful children: Edward and Annabelle.

From there we were off to see the Rabens for two nights: Clay, Brittney, Madison, and Jocelyn (a fellow adoptee!)

And the last night we would spend in America would be with our good friends The Connors who made us an All-American meal as we prepared to say good bye to the USA for at least two years. Turkey here we come!

We were quite the sight preparing to PCS out of the country!

But great news awaited us in Turkey. We were getting one of the new Eagle houses! Hurrah! This will be our new home.

After a few days in TLF (hotel on Base) we moved into our new home where loaner furniture would be out friends for another few weeks.

We felt incredibly lucky when our furniture was here by August. We had heard horror stories of waiting until October. But all our stuff arrived in great time.

We (almost) bought a handmade carpet during our first few weeks in Turkey. But either way, we were inundated with Turkish culture from new friends like Esref, our housekeeper Hatice, and gardeners. This was a whole new world!
We had the opportunity to attend a dinner during the Muslim holy week with Muslim leaders. What an educational opportunity. The first few weeks and months went by in a blur as we tried to take in the world of differences outside of our door.
There wasn't much to do early on so we had plenty of time for things like: the boys first movie. We saw CARS at the theatre on Base. The boys LOVED LOVED LOVED it and sat still for nearly the entire thing.

We also began enjoying Turkish food. We loved it, but it was a lot of the same food from restaurant to restaurant.


We had the opportunity to visit Tarsus! Caesar and Paul walked here!!!

I bought some Turkish attire and we began frequenting the market for fresh produce.

I made two friends that I know will be friends for life: Angelica and Stebbs. Here we are at the Air Force Gala during our first months on Base.

A wonderful week away was spent in the Moselle Valley in Germany. We stayed at an amazing B&B and just relaxed in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

How amazing to have Joan and my Mom here to visit me so early in our time here! How wonderful to show them the world we were now living in.

Halloween came and went with Clifford, a penguin (William) and a lion. JB was out of town for work during this event, but we are pretty sure I was already pregnant unknowingly so in this photo.
A few weeks later we let Elijah tell the world the news we had just found out. A third child was on its way to our home. God is full of surprises!

Thanksgiving (yes, a Turkey in Turkey -- go ahead and laugh) was spent with some wonderful friends and already people we loved liked family. (Yerrington, Stebbins, Jones, and Beaudoin families.)


JB goes to Izmir for work. I brave the skies (pregnant with two little boys) by myself to join him there. The highlight was our time touring Ephesus and the play of Mary's death.

Now five weeks pregnant, we attended the end-of-the-year ball for the hospital staff.

We ended our 2010 in Istanbul with, from left: Angelica, Dan, Rowan & Noah, our family, and Ryan, Sarah, and William. It was a crazy couple of days but a fantastic way to say good bye to 2010!


Anonymous said...

WOW!!! What an amazing YEAR!!! I dont think I know anyone that has been to as many places as you all, and with two very active boys no less!!! How fabulous!! It makes me smile, how much your lives have changed and how you both have met the challenges with such incredible strength and JOY!!I look forward to your blog every day!!

And now you move into another year and another one of "change" with a new baby on the way and the JOY of THREE kiddos!! Let there be no doubt you will rise to the occasion and the blessings will be tenfold!! I cant wait to read all about it!!! Love Ya!

Anonymous said...

Meant to sign Nancy to that last post!You are sounding like your old self Wen, after the shock of an emergency surgery this past week!Glad you are surrounded by such wonderful friends! Hope the party went well but I am sure you are exhausted! Hard to believe Elijah is already TWO!!!Many blessings sent your way! :) N