Our little Lena turns ONE tomorrow! Our little baby isn’t quite such a baby anymore. I could hardly have imagined — no, I didn’t imagine, not in my wildest dreams — how much joy this little one could bring into our lives. I remember my fears and eagerness at this time a year ago as labor began, wondering what was ahead of me both in the immediate hours as well as the days and weeks and months of mothering the child inside me. Well, now I know, and I am only grateful. Little Lena, how we love you!
Lena gets a special gift for her birthday: visits from her aunt Eden and two of her grandparents. Eden arrived last week and Elliott’s parents arrive tonight. Taking advantage of the hint of summer in the air and a really good deal on plane flights, we took a short trip to Malta this weekend. As we walked through the airport on Friday night, I commented, “I think this is Lena’s twelfth country in twelve months!”
Elliott wasn’t so sure. Together we counted off on our fingers: “Born in the States; took a trip to Israel; moved to Italy; visited Croatia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Albania over Christmas; went to France and Switzerland this spring; and now Malta. Twelve countries! Wow, Lena!”
In honor of this tremendous feat, I culled pictures from my photo albums of Lena in each of these countries. Some of them are better than others, but it is fun to watch her grow and develop in each of them. Enjoy!
Elliott was stationed in the Sinai Desert from July 2010-July 2011, although he was able to come home for Lena’s birth. After Lena was about two months old, we visited Elliott in Israel, where we CouchSurfed with Dina and her husband and their 9-month-old baby, hung out on the beach in Tel Aviv, and visited the Dead Sea. From the photo below, it’s amazing to see how Lena’s hair has lightened this year!
Lena moved to Italy when she was four months old. She had fun on a trip to Venice when she was about five months!