Friday, May 20, 2011

Cats (not real ones)

We'll take break from Istanbul to get a post in about my week with Madeline.  I got there just in time last Saturday to see her perform in the Jesuit Spring One-Act plays.  She was in the fall One-Acts as well and we had to miss that one so I was glad the timing worked well for this one.

Her play was a spoof of the musical Cats and was quite funny.  (All the plays were comedies which was a good thing.  If they had been intense drama I might have fallen asleep from jet lag.)  Madeline didn't have any lines as they were just singing a few of the songs from the musical (and she was supposed to sing quietly!)  But, she played Victoria the cat and danced around the stage in an awful white catsuit.  (Bad photos since I couldn't use the flash, but you can certainly pick her out.)

The large cat on the right was particularly funny as he liked to stroke his fur during the whole play

Istanbul #2 - on the Bosphorus

Here I am, back at the Frankfurt Airport.  Not much time for blogging in Dallas.  It was a busy week!  But might as well use this downtime while I still have access to the blog.

The Bosphorus Strait was of great interest to Frank as it is the channel that allows all the oil tankers to move from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean Sea and vice versa.  I honestly didn't even know this existed before we went but am now well informed.  We hung out on the Galata bridge, went to the top of the Galata tower for a bird's eye view and took a Bospohorus cruise.

On the Galata Bridge
with view of the Old City - European side

Now a view of the New City - European side
(we did not see the Asian side of the city)

Fishermen on the upper deck of the bridge
Emily and Marcy enjoyed watching them reel in their catch
(while we enjoyed a beer on the lower deck)

On the cruise (it was cold that morning!)

I wouldn't want to swim anywhere in the water because it wasn't too clean but there were also these jelly fish floating everywhere in the water.  The girls really wanted a picture of them!

One of the bridges that crosses the Bosphorus
 We watched this tanker make it's way along the strait from the Galata Tower
They regulate the traffic so we only saw one or two tankers the whole time we were there.
Certainly our trip to Istanbul was an educational one - historical, religious, and in the case of the Bosphorus and the city's location, geographical!

Monday, May 16, 2011


Every time we travel somewhere I feel like I need to do some background reading about the history of the place.  I want to read about the English monarchy and the Russian Csars and now I definitely want to read about the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires.  A good word for Istanbul is simply "WOW!"  I think we said that quite a bit.

We only had a long weekend there but we squeezed in quite a bit of stuff - some shopping at the Grand Bazaar, site seeing at all the famous locations in the Old City, a Bosphorous cruise, and just exploring all the little streets and observing many of the millions (!) of people who live in the city.

Here is the photo tour!

At the Grand Bazaar - huge indoor shopping

Marcy's purchase at the bazaar

We did lots of walking and saw lots of these small cobblestone streets

 This ice cream man put on quite a show and suckered us in.  He makes a big performance of scooping and serving a cone while slyly serving up the biggest size cone and charging a ridiculous price.  Frank was so mad he dumped his cone back in the bin and refused to pay for it.  He hates this man!

 Istanbul University - I really wanted to go inside!!  Maybe they have a bookstore and we could buy t-shirts and magnets and all that fun stuff we always get when we go visit colleges.  But, alas, it was closed to all but those with university ID.  Not sure why but I feel like I missed out.

More to come.  Now it's time to go purchase appliances and choose knobs for cabinets and select ceiling fans, etc. etc.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

More Easter

Long delay but here are some photos from the neighborhood Easter brunch that Marcy, Olivia and I attended.  (Emily had a soccer game so Frank took her.  They won 3-2 against the city champions and Emily had the winning goal!!)

Olivia and Jean-Claude
(his mom works in the library with me)

Most of the neighborhood (little) kids

Marcy on the egg hunt
but she only got 3 eggs so all the small kids could get more

Most of the neighborhood is made up of teachers at the school so it was nice to be included in the party.  I kind of flit around the outside of this group - not a full time teacher and definitely a busy parent.

Friday, May 13, 2011

During #2

I'm in Frankfurt right now waiting for my flight to Dallas.  Soon I'll get to see the construction in progress for myself.  Until then I thought I would update with some photos.  Major progress made since the last post.

Back deck with doors and windows in place

Kitchen with bathroom and pantry framing (on left)
Can't wait to see how it looks.  I do have lots of work to do while I'm at home finalizing things like cabinets and countertops and choosing paint colors.  Then we won't see it again until it's nearly finished in July.  I sure hope we like it!!!!!