Friday, July 25, 2008

Getting settled... temporarily

We got our new backpack in! If you read the previous post you can remember that we dragged a stroller and baby up what felt like a thousand too many stairs. I am probably a little too excited about this but what can I say? It's like a new element of freedom. A freedom to explore Europe!

I am also overly excited about the fact we got our "express" shipment in from the States. You never know how much you love a daily household item until you go 7 weeks without it!
Our beloved microwave! We have been cooking everything in the stove. It is such a relief not to have to wait 55 minutes for a frozen dinner. Back to 5 minute meals! Yay! However, I am sad to say our beloved microwave will only be with us for 6 weeks. We move into a German home in September and we have learned that microwaves and transformers do not mix!

I can not tell you how much I missed Miles highchair! I could have kissed this thing all over. It's so nice to be able to put Miles in his highchair, give him his cheerios, and fold some laundry! I've been having to feed him on the floor and well... I'm sure all you mommies know what happens with that.

Hallelujah! We have our TV again! Even better...We have American channels! People speak English on our TV! Back when we were at the hotel it was all German channels (which was better than nothing), but ever since we've been at this temporary housing we haven't had a TV. I never realized how nice it is to have voices in the background. It has been quite the lonely 2 weeks. 

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Hohenzollern Castle

This weekend we went to see the Hohenzollern castle. It was absolutely amazing! I couldn't believe my eyes as the castle came into view. While we were walking through I couldn't help but imagine what it must have been like back then. The tour we took was in German so we had to follow along with a little book written in English. It was a bit difficult because Miles was excited over all the shiny things and was squealing with delight. Brad and I were having to trade him back and forth because they didn't allow strollers. We did get to wear special shoes to protect the original floors!
 Apparently, this castle has been destroyed twice and was finally restored in the 1800's. In the castle they had an original letter from George Washington thanking the King! If you want to know more info about the castle, click here:

These steps were AWFUL! We had to climb to the very top like this. Poor Brad was carrying the stroller up and I was carrying Miles. We had to take frequent breaks. All the other people with kids had those backpack things. Needless to say we ordered one last night!

This is the courtyard.

The drawbridge. It was so neat to see this. Behind the drawbridge there are 3 sets of huge steel doors and the one more right before you enter the castle.
Standing at the top. I wish I could upload more pictures. With this whole "1 bar internet" thing it just takes too long. I don't think pictures could describe the magnificence of this castle anyway! You must all come to Germany and visit and we will take you! :)

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Not a lot has been going on this week. We finally moved out of our hotel into "temporary housing" which is located on one of the bases. Unfortunately, we have no phone, internet or cable here so I am fighting a major case of boredom-itous.
There happens to be a neighbor around here who has unlocked wireless internet so we are "borrowing" it until ours gets hooked up in about a week.  That being the case, we only have 1 little bar and it only works on a good day. Today is a very good day.

No car yet either so we are still walking to anything that is within walking distance. Boy, have we got some calves now! I don't think I mind though. I think the forced exercise starts to grow on you after a while, especially when you look in the mirror and admire your new calves.

Brad is taking his European drivers license tomorrow and I am waiting to see how it went before I even try to take mine. He is my guinea pig. I wish I could show you some of the road signs here. They look like Dr. Suess characters. One sign has a picture of a police man who appears to be beating small children. It's hilarious. 

We've officially been here 3 weeks today. It feels like 3 months! With no car, no home, and way too much Subway sandwiches the days drraaag by. We are hoping to venture somewhere this weekend. We shall see though, we shall see.

Some more things I have noticed about Germany? There are little old ladies on bikes everywhere! When you hear the "ding" behind you,  you know to dodge to the side quick and sure enough LOL (lil' ol' lady) goes flying by. 
What else? Some how, some way EVERYBODY knows we are an American. I just can't figure out how they know. Infact, I'm starting to get mad they possess this intelligence. Whenever we make room or hold a door open, we always hear a heavily accented "sank you!". How do they know? I told Brad he needs to start wearing the men's caprees or sandals with socks to fit in. Maybe then we'll get a 'danke".

That's about it for now. More updates and pics to come!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

First hair cut

I'm sad to say I cut Miles' hair tonight. Although it was looking quite mullet-ish. He did great though. He kept trying to grab my scissors. He's looking like a big boy more and more everyday.

Had to distract him with a no-no toy. Desperate time...desperate toy.

The mullet is gone!
Not the happiest, but I did save a lock for his baby book!

Happy that mommy is done messing with his neck. Every time the cold scissors touched his neck he scrunched up like a slinky. 

Friday, July 11, 2008

Miles being Miles

It's been a while since I've posted a video of Miles. He turned 9 months old a couple days ago. I can't believe how the time has flown! This is just a random video I took of him yesterday. He's just being his cute little self.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Train rides

We've started venturing off base and taking the train into town. Today was our second time trying this. I wish I could have taken pics from the last time when we went to downtown Stuttgart. It's an amazing city.
Today we just did a little house shopping. We found a place that we love. It's actually right in front of the train station. Its interesting how these trains run from neighborhoods to cities. You would never need a car here! I noticed many people carried their bikes on the train too. I can see the dollar signs that we'll save in gas already!
On another note... I have no clue how these trains work and if it wasn't for Brad I would be completely lost. He can look at a map and within 10 seconds knows where we are and where we are going...English or not!  So jealous! 
Waiting for the first train. Notice everyone is in a jacket. It was 50 degrees that day IN JULY!
Here it is! You only have 15 seconds to get on board. They are QUICK! Notice nobody is driving the train.
In between trains, Brad takes a quick peek to find out which platform we stand at. We have to hurry because they arrive every 5 minutes.
This is the city we'll be living in. (Hopefully) LOVE it! All the ground stores are little mom and pop shops. 

Thursday, July 3, 2008

1 week down

Well we've officially lived in Germany for 1 week now. I wish I had some pictures of some  amazing castles or the black forest but this first week has been all checking in and mostly being at the base. 
This is the path we walk everyday to Kelley barracks. (Joint command base). It's about a mile walk from the hotel. Doesn't look too different huh? The fence on the left is the American base.
Here's the bus stop. Public transportation is huge here. Lots of buses and trains. I think we screamed tourist to the people waiting for the bus when I took the pic.

I thought this was funny with all the bikes. This is the Mercedes headquarters. I should have taken a pic of the giant Mercedes emblem spinning around.  I figured they'd all be driving Mercedes!
I love these smart cars! I've seen a few back home but they are everywhere here! They are so cute I could just put them in my pocket and take it home!

Hopefully we'll venture out a little more this weekend. I just found out today that there will be fireworks on the base for the 4th! Wonder what the Germans think of that?