Thursday, January 29, 2009


I've been reminiscing through some pictures that we have taken over the last year and a half. Boy! We have really gotten to see a lot and I need to get them in some kind of a more organized order! I decided to post a few that I have probably shared before. I can't seem to find many of all the castles, but I have them buried in my files somewhere. It really is beautiful in the warmer months with all the trees, vineyards and flowers blooming. Oh... I yearn for summer!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Happy 35th!! and 62nd...and 6th....and 39th...

I'm going to get all my birthday wishes out for the week in one post. So, Happy Birthday Matt (today), Dad (26th), Nicholas (27th) and Steve (30th). That's a lot of birthdays in the family for one week!

We didn't have much of a celebration... Matt came home for lunch and I cooked his favorite, chicken n' dumplings with a dessert of cherry cheese pie. Of course, his present that I ordered January 5th is still not here so we had to do the ole' wrapping up a picture of his new black coat. We got him a few other things, but nothing big. Tonight we have basketball pictures and are gonna order pizza... exciting, huh?

Happy Birthday to all the boys!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Get Real

Ok. Yep! We're still alive and kicking. I've been at a loss as for something to post lately. I don't know who reads this and who doesn't, but I know you can only read so much about my kids. Today I read a blog that challenged all of her fellow bloggers to "Get Real." Click on Becca's blog on my sidebar if you wish to read it. She's an excellent writer, by the way. Anyway, since I don't know what to post about, I'm going to take her up on it... so, here it goes.

10 Things - Get Real

1. I worry what other bloggers think about what I write. Unlike my sister, I know I'm not gifted in the creative writing field. When I started this blog, I really thought only my parents and in laws would read it.

2. Some people think I have it really tough as a military wife (including me!), but I know that I do not have it nearly as tough as a lot of military wives do. I have so much to be thankful for.

3. I have an intense fear of something happening to Matt and/or I, and our children being left without a parent. I create scenarios in my head of things that could happen. Yes, we have a will and life insurance so I know they would be taken care of.

4. I'm not near the good housekeeper that my mom is. My drawers are not perfectly straight and towels not near as neatly folded. I do try to keep it neat and tidy on the surface though.

5. I feel like I am "good" at several things, but not really talented at anything.

6. I frequently forget to tell my husband how much I love him and am not very good at showing affection.

7. My face, well chin has caused me more acne problems in my adult life than when I was a teenager! It's really annoying on many different levels.

8. I sometimes have a hard time controlling my temper with my children. I have to remind myself that I usually expect a lot out of them for their ages.

9. I instantly miss my husband the second he drives away from the house, even if he's only gone a couple of days. Suddenly, I'm awake until midnight when I'm usually in bed by 10 and asleep the minute my head hits the pillow. As much as he is gone, you would think I would be used to it by now.

10. It makes me really nervous to cook for company and I really don't enjoy entertaining at my house.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Going Green?

Living in Germany has certainly taught us a lot about the environment. I can't say it was necessarily by choice, we were forced into it. However, it's not such a bad thing, really. I'm a believer that it's simply a matter of getting used to it. I won't lie, I'm not a full blown "Green" girl. But, I have made a few changes that I think I will keep with when we move back to the States.

Our latest environment improvement is probably one I won't stick with. They have made a believer of me out of buying smaller, more efficient cars. We'll never buy a Smart, but something smaller than what we are used to driving. This past week, though, we have converted to Germany's new law of only using mid grade or higher gasoline. I must admit, I was not a happy camper about this! At least gas prices are lower than they've been in a long time so I can't complain too much right now. I was just getting used to paying a little over $2, we were under $2 for one whole week (on base we get it at the US price). Now, we get to make the jump to the midgrade level. I know it's not that much difference in the grand scheme of things and it will be better for the environment, but I don't have to be happy about it. :-)

Some things that I think I will stick to are recycling (though maybe not to the degree we do it here). I've found it is pretty easy to recycle boxes - cereal boxes alone count for quite a bit of trash. Cans are not hard to do either. Magazines, newspapers, detergent containers... all pretty easy. Another thing I will try to stick to, though I don't know for sure is trying to use some of my "green" bags instead of so many plastic bags. Granted, I don't have enough for a big store run, but when I'm only buying a few bag fulls it's not so bad. The worst part for me is remembering to take them inside with me!

Another interesting tidbit that we learned this week is that it's NOT cheap to hunt around here! Like getting a drivers license (2000+ Euro plus, 25 - 45 hours of professional instruction, and 12 hours of theory!) it cost around 700+ Euro, initially to get a hunting license. This of course, doesn't include if you actually kill something. Nor does it include the 120 hour class you have to take complete with a written and oral exam that must be passed. The grand total gets up around 2000 Euro as well. I'm learning that not much is free in Europe. Though, I guess not much is free in America either, but at least it's a little cheaper!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Happy New Years! I'm a little behind...

Yep! We're still alive and kicking. We have had a busy week and I haven't had time to post anything. It's been a nice change from our usually slow pace around here.

Christmas was great and pretty uneventful. Santa was good to everyone and Matt and I enjoyed watching the kids play all day with their new toys. The Rowland's eventually arrived, after a disappointing delay in the airport. They didn't get to come until a day later than we anticipated. This resulted in a quick overnight trip to Frankfurt for the whole family... I won't go into detail, but it was a fun and unexpected event.

After the Rowlands arrived and we had our Christmas, Matt and I headed off to London again for 2 nights alone. It was fantastic! I am becoming quite the nervous flier in my old age. It used to not bother me, but ever since Matt and I had a scary flight out of Miami a few years ago, I am a basket case. It seems to be getting worse and worse and I am already dreading my flight back to the states this summer. Maybe, with 3 kids it will keep my mind occupied!

London was as much fun this time as it was the first. We got to go inside and tour Westminster Abbey which was fascinating to me. I did not realize the number of tombs in that place! It was fascinating to see the chair the kings have been crowned on and the alter where Princess Diana's casket laid. I vividly remember watching that on tv, several years ago. We lived in South Carolina at the time and were childless. The rest of the trip was spent browsing through the enormous shops. I've never seen so much shopping with such a HUGE department store. Not one... but several. You can get lost in these places and they put Macy's (in NY) to shame. Incredible! The other highlight was going to see the play Chicago. I loved it and Matt enjoyed it to. I'm so glad we got to do that. I was amazed at the number of people in jeans and sweatshirts, as Matt and I were dressed up and looking snazzy. I wish we had some pictures without our coats on but it was just too cold. We ended the trip with the beautiful display of fireworks over the London Eye. It was crowded, but really very calm. I anticipated a lot of drunken behavior, but really did not see too much. However, the morning we left part of the Underground was closed due to a person underneath a train. I'm guessing that may have had to do with a full night of partying for somebody...

We came back to the house being in tact and the kids were all kicking. Oh, did I mention that before we left we spent the day at the doctor with Jordyn who had a bladder infection? It was the first one since her stint in the hospital when we first moved here. I certainly didn't want to end up back in the hospital. She got antibiotics and is doing much better. Nana and Pops took good care of all three of them. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Yesterday, we took a train to Koln, Germany so that the Rowlands got to see at least one new thing this trip. You really must stay longer next year! It was great fun, despite Jordyn having one of those lovely cranky days. The boys made up for her.

2008 has come and gone and we have a lot to be thankful for. It was a fun year of traveling (Garmich, Germany, Holland, Paris - 3 times, Normandy, London). The kids adjusted nicely to their new school and we have been fortunate to have had family come to visit on a fairly regular basis. 2009 is going to be a big year for our family, as many of you know Matt is deploying again this spring. I'm sure there will be many trials and tribulations, but I know we will make it through. Thank you, God for a wonderful year!

I know the slide show is long. Sorry... I just have so many pictures!