Some friends of ours, Paul and Micaela, sent us this postcard from Istanbul! Paul is a teacher in the same district where I work as a principal. Micaela is an athletic trainer at a local college and has worked some with Ann on weight training. We’ve enjoyed getting to know them, but didn’t know they’d slipped off to Istanbul with their son, Benjamin, while we were away on vacation this summer. They said that Istanbul was amazing and that there is, “lots and lots of history.” They aren’t wrong.

A postcard from Turkey

Humans settled the area of Istanbul about 3,000 years ago. First called Lygos, Greeks colonized the city in the 7th century B.C.  The Romans conquered the city in AD 196 and changed its name to Byzantium. In AD 330 the city’s name was changed again, this time to Constantinople, and it was made the capital of the Roman Empire. It grew to be one of the largest cities in the ancient world with a population of about 500,000. The city’s importance continued even after the fall of the Roman Empire–eventually, it became the capital of the Ottoman Empire.

In 1923, the Republic of Turkey was formed, the capital was moved to Ankara, and Constantinople was renamed Istanbul, the name it has today.

So remember: Istanbul was Constantinople. Now it’s Istanbul, not Constantinople. Been a long time gone, Constantinople…  Sorry, got a little carried away there.


  • This house-made carrot cake at the Williston Brewing Company in @visitwilliston, @NorthDakotaLegedary tastes even better than it looks! Who wants a bite of this moist cake, three layers high with fresh strawberries and caramel sauce? Um, we do.
  • One of the quirkiest stops we've ever come across is Carhenge, near Alliance, Nebraska. Over a couple of weeks, a family decided to recreate the world-famous Stonehenge out of junked cars. Using farm implements, they constructed a replica that even has a heel In so doing, they created a must-see roadside attraction for anyone traveling across the United States.
  • Ann stands next to one of the huge rocks at Toadstool Geologic Park in Nebraska. The unique geology of this park happened because a hard rocky layer sat atop a soft under layer. As the soft layer erodes, huge rocks are left standing in unique positions.
  • You gotta start somewhere...⁣
In all journeys in life, you must start somewhere. Here we were at Mile Marker 0 in Key West about 70 pounds (between the two of us) ago. Our journey isn't over, but we're on our way to a healthier lifestyle. @noom
  • These cucumber-salmon bites were a perfect taste treat for a bridal shower Ann hosted recently. She started with a slice of cucumber, then a bit of salmon topped with a dollop of cream cheese and dill.
  • ...Why don't you come with me, little girl, on a Magic Carpet ride...⁣
One of the most unique features of the new @celebritycruise Edge is the Magic Carpet, a platform that moves up and down the side of the ship and serves different purposes at each stop. There is something truly special about sitting directly over the sea and looking back at the ship while you sip a delicious cocktail.
  • This prosciutto pizza served overlooking the Amalfi Coast is the stuff dreams are made of. The homemade crust, hand tossed before being baked to thin perfection in a wood oven. The sauce and cheese were so fresh it brought tears to our eyes. And the prosciutto was sliced thin enough to be translucent. This is what pizza is supposed to be.
  • Cookie, cookie, cookie start with "C."⁣
This is what we found when we walked into our beautiful room at @thepioneerwoman Boarding House after dinner at the Merc. As part of turn down service, they gave us a couple of Ree's delicious cookies, which made for a perfect end to a great day.

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