Travel with our family as we learn about, live amongst and embrace the people, culture and country of Hungary.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Birthdays, surgeries and friends (old and new)!

- Almost three months since I last is full, busy and blessed here in Papa, Hungary!!!

- We celebrated three birthdays these past three months - Jeff on Sept. 20 (had Chinese food in Gyor), Tania on Oct. 3 (had Hungarian food in Papa) and Grace who turned 10 on Nov. 9 (took a friend and went downtown for some shopping and lunch). We're thankful for every new year the Lord gives us!!!

- I have discovered a wonderful way to spend an evening...watching Jane Austen movies with some of my friends and sharing a yummy dinner!

- Went to see the ruins of a Roman villa. Amazing that so much of the structure, mosaic floors, and items found in the villa still remain after more than 2,000 years. I think the kids enjoyed seeing it and also eating at McDonalds.

- I've had to take the kids to the pediatrician here in Papa a few times...usually only have had to wait 30 minutes...not bad. Here, at the Dr and the vet, there is no waiting list to sign up on when you just sit down and everyone just goes in based on the order that they arrived...seems to work well

- Jeff was unfortunately gone a lot these past three months...back to the US for training, to Germany for medical tests (everything is fine) and various other trips. We are happy to have had him home for the past three weeks!

- Have enjoyed eating and cooking some yummy recipes from my friend, Sevtap, who is Turkish!

- In early October we were so excited to have our friends, the Alderman family, visit us! Thermal bath, jump castle in Gyor, stork restaurant, walking street...we enjoyed showing them all the sights, tastes and sounds of Papa and the surrounding area! But best of all, we got to talk lots and the kids got to play lots!

- Just finished up a Beth Moore study on the life of David with my ladies' Bible study. Such a wonderful study...biggest lesson learned - God is looking for a heart that loves Him absolutely and wholeheartedly more than He is looking for perfection.

- Here is an article that talks about Jeff's squadron here in Papa and all the work they do...I am so proud of him and all the folks here! C-17s in Hungary

- In October we had a nice time at the Chestnut Festival in Velem (about an hour west of here). People performing on stilts, eating roasted chestnuts, jump castles, music and vendors...a very nice time. What a pretty area of the country with the hills and trees! Here is a picture of all the kids watching a puppet show.

- Had some highs and lows when it comes to friends...high - our good friends, the Hobbes, get to stay in Papa for a few more months...bad news, our good friends the Comptons who were supposed to come to Papa in Dec will no longer be coming :(

- We had a wonderful week in Italy when we went to Aviano Air Base for medical appointments. We got to go to Venice one of the days. Venice was beautiful!!! And it was a perfect day weather-wise...thank you Lord! Fav parts about Venice in the minds of each kid - Sarah - climbing everywhere, Nathan - getting mask, Rebecca - wearing mask, Rachel - holding wild pigeon,
Grace - feeding pigeons. Looking forward to returning there with visitors in the future.

- The weather in Hungary for all summer and fall was absolutely beautiful! Now it is getting cold and I do not like thankful for a warm house!!!

- On November 4th we were all thanking God that He sent His angels to protect Nathan and we were so  thankful to the bus driver who saw a little boy run right in front of his bus and stopped in time. So loving our precious son and our precious Jesus!!!

- Our little dog Molly, that Jeff and I first bought in Okinawa almost 16 years ago, passed away in early November. She has been lovingly taken care of by Jeff's parents for the past 7 years (she didn't do too well with kids). Thanks Dad, Mom and Karen for all the TLC. I know she will be missed!

- I got the opportunity to share with our home church, the plight of the persecuted church throughout the world on the International Day of the Persecuted Church Sunday. I hope to do more work with Voice of the Martyrs and Gospel for Asia in the future!

- We moved houses a few weeks back...bigger backyard and bigger living areas. Whew! I am still unpacking! Hopefully we won't be doing this again for at least another year or two.

- Had a wonderful visit from our friends, the Smerz family! Budapest, thermal baths, shopping, yummy restaurants and Thanksgiving!!! They have been such faithful friends to visit us in Texas, California, Charleston, Korea and now Hungary!!! The laughs around the table and the children enjoying each other were so good for my soul!

- A few days before Thanksgiving, two other American moms and I put on a Thanksgiving celebration for the kids at Nathan and Sarah's Ovada (Kindergarten). We told the story of Thanksgiving (with translation), had food, made crafts and even had pilgrim hats and Indian feathers for them. It's funny how even Hungarian kids can run around, whooping like Indians. Here is a video of a song that the Hungarian children sang for us, at the end of the celebration. It's about a turkey.

- What a nice time we had for Thanksgiving! We had our friends, the Smerz family here, and then we invited our neighbors on either side from our old house. Jeff told the story of Thanksgiving and our Hungarian friend Peter translated it. It was so neat to share this special holiday with old and new friends!!!

- We finished up November and into December with a week-long trip back to Aviano AB, in Italy. This time it was for both Jeff (planned) and Rachel (unplanned) to have surgeries. Both are doing well...Jeff for hernia and Rachel for an abscess in her throat. What a whirlwind three weeks we have had! I'm looking forward to slowing down a bit! But PTL, everyone is fine, we have a warm home on a cold night and it's Christmas time!