Saturday, May 29, 2010


So we're here in good ol' Barcelona, Spain! While we love traveling, I can't say Barcelona is my favorite. Perhaps we are finally used to the German ways and laws?
We started the morning off with a shock by taking a walk to the local beach. Naked people everywhere! Sadly, I do have a picture of some naked people (better erase that before our mac turns in into a screen savor). Below has fuzzy naked people and Brad's pleasant reaction.

We took a walk downtown afterwards with the family. I'm impressed with how well Miles is doing. His cousins are doing a great job keeping him entertained and happy. We didn't see too much other than a gorgeous museum (see below). Our big trip starts off tomorrow when we board the ship. Really looking forward to the amazing itinerary!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Edelweiss take 2!

We took my parents up to Garmisch for a couple days and it was a blast. We stayed in these tiny cabins (see below) that had no bathrooms or showers. It was like luxury camping. I uploaded a ton of pics. Just couldn't narrow it down!

Top of the Zuchspitz. My parents were SNOW blind!

I, the genius, wore slippers. I was picking snow out all morning. Luckily, it wasn't too cold up there!
We rode a cog train to the top, but rode a cable car down. This thing freaked me out! One snap and we all plummet to our deaths.
Switzerland Alps
So apparently we're sending this picture into the Pentwater newspaper.
Finally made it down. My dad pointing to where we were at.

Our cog train.
Everyone's pastime. Reading on the porch.

Had to take my parents out for a traditional German meal. My Mom loved it... Dad did not.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


I realize this is the umpteenth time I've blogged about weather, but doggonit we are frustrated here. It is the talk of the town wherever you go. "Can you believe it is still this cold? What is up with this weather?" Today's high is 45 degrees and it is the middle of MAY! I'm thinking I've finally fallen prey Seasonal Affective Disorder....that or I am just not a northern girl.
I think, (and stupid has given me false hope countless times) that it's going to warm up for the weekend. But what stinks is... we are taking my parents to the Austrian Alps this weekend and it's 15 degrees colder there! Ahh!
Let me just say I can not WAIT for our Spain/Italy trip in a couple weeks. I don't know how they manage to stay in the 70's when we are stuck in the 40's-50's. But, I'm ready to wear some flip-flops and tank-tops already! I think I've worn shorts once since Spring started!
Ok, done with my weather vent!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I've been working with a professional photo-editing program called aperture. They have a 30-day free trial going on right now and I've been giving it a whirl. I don't know why I even tease myself like this because of course it's over $200. While I've really been digging the whole "photography hobby", I'm not sure I could sell Brad on it buying me such an expensive program. Not to mention I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing when I work with it. Who knew there was 7 different ways to make something 'black and white'? Anyway... until I can figure out how to the whole black and white with specific objects in color.. these are some of the edits I've done so far. I tried something different with each picture. Gotta say it helps to have my wonderful camera.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


Ever take pictures of your kiddos and one day notice how much older they look? Bittersweet!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Gotta love bread dip!

We LOVE baguettes from the bakery. Mmm, they are so soft, warm and taste delicious. They make for a great side to almost every meal. I used to just butter bread, heat and serve. But lately I've been trying different oil based dips which are so much more healthy than butter. They are also a great hostess gift idea along with a fresh baked loaf of bread and a great bottle of extra virgin olive oil. I tried a new recipe today and it was SO delicious I had to share! And to think I made it all from the seasonings in my cabinet.
Here is what you need aside from a bottle of extra virgin olive oil:
-1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
-1 tablespoon black pepper
-1 tablespoon dried oregano
-1 tablespoon dried rosemary
-1 tablespoon dried basil
-1 tablespoon dried parsley
-1 tablespoon garlic powder
-1 tablespoon minced garlic
-1 teaspoon salt

Grind it all together. Pull 1 teaspoon of mix out to small bowl, add with desired amount of extra virgin olive oil, stir and walaa! You can also heat to help blend flavors. You'll have the most delicious and healthy dipping sauce. Store the rest because you know you'll be pulling it out the next day to finish the loaf!

Busy busy!

Is it just me...or is May the busiest month of the year for everyone?
I find myself lost in to-do lists. However, I am excited to see that our summer is wide open!
Some of things we have going on are school (BIG time eater here). Both Brad and I are wrapping up this week which calls for final exams, papers, discussion boards, etc.
Now that I think about it, Brad has successfully made it through a semester taking FULL time classes and working full time as well. He is Super Dad/Student/Husband/Marine wrapped up in one.

Spring cleaning is another one. Our house (and car) is a wreck! Everything needs to be cleaned, dusted, bleached and aired out. Since we have no central air, it's disgusting in here. You can't really open your windows in the winter thus, mold grows like wildfire. This reminds me I need to do the big switch from winter clothes to summer clothes. Unfortunately, it has been freezing here! Like 40 degrees freezing. I think this week was the end of it though.
In addition to cleaning, I've been selling all our old crap on (LOVE this site). While selling everything is great, it's super annoying b/c I have to make constant runs to post to drop the sold items off.

I've been trying to keep up with Miles playdates, as well our social life... although these are fun for me too. I'm hosting playgroup at my house in the morning, which reminds me I need to run to the store to get snacks. It's a sad time of year because half our friends are PCSing back to the States this summer. I hate saying goodbye! The one thing I've always held onto when moving is "oh we'll be stationed together again one day." The sad part about here is it's a rare joint command (meaning all 4 branches working together) and I'm afraid I'm the only Marine wife I really know! Marines have their own bases with the occasional Sailor wondering around. So, I'm afraid most of these goodbye's are forever.... or for a very long time.

We're doing some traveling at the end of the month! Very excited about this! I've had to keep it quiet because my brother (and family) are not telling their kids until the last minute, for very good reasons I should add.
We're kicking the adventure off with my parents. They arrive in less than 2 weeks. We've booked some wood cabins in Edelweiss that have NO shower and NO bathroom. This is going to be interesting, but what the heck, we're in the Swiss/Austrian Alps so I guess we can't complain. After that, we're meeting with my brother and his family in Spain and we're going on a cruise to the Western Mediterranean. We'll get to see Barcelona, Monte Carlo, Naples, Rome, Florence and Palma. It's all very exciting. We didn't come to Germany to sit on the US bases, that's for sure, and I'm so happy my family is coming along for the ride this time.
That's about it for now!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Kick bike...yah!

Miles got a kickbike for his birthday last year and after all our recent family bike rides he has a newfound interest in it. These kickbikes are so cool! They have no pedals on them and are a great starter bike for the tots. They learn balance and can fly like no one's business!
We have coats on with some of the pictures because it has been in the 40's all week! We had a nice break in the weather today!

This little girl was on a tricycle but when she saw Miles on her kickbike she ran and got hers and followed along. Very cute!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

It's that time of year again

I thought someone out there may be interested in what our annual house bill looks like. The way they do things out here is very confusing, then add the language barrier and we're just at a complete loss. We got this in the mail a couple days ago stating we owe 1,600 Euros. We also pay 150 Euro every month towards this same bill in hopes to bring down the cost. It is incredibly expensive to live out here!
One of things I find funny is how they charge us for water coming in AND the same water going out. So, basically you pay to run your sink... and then you pay for the water to go down the drain. Or pay to fill your toilet with water, then pay to flush that same water. There's all kinds of things like that. Once upon a time Germans were taxed for how many windows they had in their house! Anyway... if you're curious, just click on the picture above to make it bigger. This was just the first page!

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Thanks to my local German friend Christine, I've found a compromise for Miles as far as the whole kindergarten thing goes. She has her daughters in a "mini-club" that is just 1 town over. It's still a German-only structure, but it's only 2 days a week and for 3 hours. A parent is required to stay and help the teacher every week, (which will be interesting when it is my turn because all I will think to say to these kids when misbehaving is "nine!"). I feel MUCH better about this and am even more comforted that Christine can help translate if needed. The loophole is that you have to be 2 to enter the mini-club. Miles will be 2 for about 6 weeks before turning 3. Gotta love that October birthday!
I also feel comforted by the fact that if I don't like it, or if Miles doesn't like it, I will pull him out and that is that! I will definitely look forward to the few hours of alone time since we have no babysitters here and I can count on 1 hand the times I've ever left his side! That's 2.5 years of CONSTANT Miles. Moms need a break sometimes, right? :)

Ludwigsburg Palace

About 20 minutes away from our house is Germany's largest Baroque palace. We love to come here just to relax, feed ducks or have a picnic. Our family photo above (the main blog picture) is of the side of this building. I didn't really take a lot of pics, but just thought I'd share about one of our favorite hangout spots.

You see the other palace in the background? Neighbors!
Brad doing his Matrix trick.