Up at 4:30 this morning, we were on our first flight of the day at 6:30 out of Krakow.
The sun was just coming up as we flew towards Frankfurt, the first of two flights for us today.
I could hardly wait for the second flight as it was taking us to...
After nearly 35 years of living in Europe, it's rare that I have the privilege of visiting a country I've never been in before.
But today is my happy day!
And it's the happiest because we're meeting our family who live here!
Caleb, Haley and Charlie moved to Albania in September to serve with JV in the city of Vlorë. And this is our first time to see them here.
My eyes drank in all the sights as we began the drive from Tirana, the capital, down to their city.
We stopped in the town of Durrës for a quick lunch at a yummy gyros place. I loved walking in there with Haley and listening to her already using Albanian words to order.
With Charlie asleep in the car, we ate our lunch and took in all the views as we drove the two hours south, down to Vlorë.
Our first stop was at the home of the JV Albanian country leader, Juli and his family.
Unfortunately I was soaking in the time so much I didn't take any pictures there. But this is the view out from their apartment building.
After a visit with them, we arrived at Caleb and Haley's home in another apartment building nearby. Charlie was anxious to show Papa his toy and book corner as soon as we arrived!
A few minutes later Caleb got a phone call from Ermal, one of his teammates, telling him that I'd brought something special for Caleb - a birthday present from Ermal that had been shipped to me in Czech to bring for Caleb!=
Ermal knew that Caleb missed his skateboard that had to be left in the States when he moved to Albania. His thoughtfulness set into a motion a series of conversations between Caleb's siblings, and then me, in order to make it happen. What an incredible gift!
The rest of our evening was spent enjoying our dear family here in their cozy home. I'm so excited about the days ahead, getting to see their world here!