Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Another Blooper to Write Home About

As the door opened and our elegantly dressed hostess invited us inside, my husband and I walked into a room of 25 women with Islamic veils tossed over their shoulders.  Suddenly the room fell silent, and all eyes were fixed on my husband, the only male in the room. Our hostess continued smiling and politely ushered Jose into a side room. My face flushed, and I prayed desperately, “Oh God, couldn’t I just disappear right now?”  

Here was another blooper to write home about.

Friday, August 24, 2012

What's Your Greatest Challenge?

Do you ever feel like daily problems and life issues are magnified because you’re working overseas? Today I hope to hear from you about your life.  What is your greatest difficulty living and serving overseas?  If you’re like me, you find that regular, daily struggles are intensified by cross-cultural stress, but living overseas also brings a whole new set of challenges.

My Greatest challenge is trusting God with my children.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Finding Freedom in Simple Routines

My hall closet has a life of its own.  Every August I de-clutter and organize it, but over the course of the school year, from September to May, it slowly deteriorates into a chaos.  Extra items I can’t find a place for get shoved in there, papers and supplies get shuffled, and entropy seems to reign. One of the realities of life in Turkey is little storage space, so my house has one small closet to store empty suitcases, school books and supplies, craft materials, shopping bags, a Christmas tree, ladder, and a broom! 

Just like my closet, my life as a cross-cultural worker also tends towards entropy. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Enjoying Summer's Bounty: Turkish Style Vegetables!

Are you set to enjoy the last weeks of summer? Or are you tired of the heat and wishing for fall already?  In Turkey, summer’s all about vegetables: eggplant, tomatoes, squash, and green beans.  On hot afternoons delicious smells of frying peppers travel up and down the stairs of our apartment building as housewives make dinner. K─▒zartma, fried vegetables, is a popular dish served with garlic yogurt. Vegetables of all varieties are cooked in olive oil, tomato, and garlic.

“Olive oil won’t make you fat,” my Turkish mother used to tell me.  

Monday, August 6, 2012

Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World

One whole month of summer vacation sounds exciting, but then when I think of all my projects, I start to get anxious.  How to best use my time? I’m hoping to recharge my spiritual batteries and spend time reading, reflecting, and praying about my plans for the fall. How am I going to balance that with my house organization projects, preparation for next year’s home school, editing my husband’s doctoral dissertation and on-going ministry?  Can you relate?