Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Sharing for fun...

A good friend sent this to us recently.  Most of it is true even with the short amount of time We've been here ....   8 weeks now.  WHAT!?!   Yep.  It's been that long already.  I cannot believe it either.  I counted three times just to make sure.  

30 Reasons you know you're an American Military or Civilian living in Germany (or have lived in Germany)... ;-)

1. Ausfahrt isn't funny anymore, and roundabouts are second nature.
2. You no longer mind the person behind or next to you only giving you half an inch of space.
3. 2 hrs for dinner is "fast food".
4. You judge mustard by how well it opens your sinuses.
5. Jumping across the border to get away for the day is no big deal.
6. You reach for the J├Ągermeister instead of Pepto Bismol.
7. You think family pictures taken at a castle are "so cliche."
8. You forgot how to use round doorknobs.
9. You forget how to flush a toilet that doesn't have a push button.
10. 100 MPH seems like you're driving really, really slow.
11. You no longer think it is strange that beer and water are the same price.
12. Even at home you don't put ice in your drinks. 
You never go shopping off base without a shopping bag or VAT form.
13. You NEVER shop on payday or the day before a German holiday.
14. You never leave home without your keys, ID card, license, and passport.
15. You think anything with chocolate sounds like a good breakfast.
16. You think it is natural to pass Army tanks on the highway.
17. You answer the phone "Hallo" instead of Hello.
18. You need a power drill and sledgehammer to hang a picture on the wall.
19. You rig your lawnmower and vacuum cleaner to give you an electrical shock if you try to operate them on Sundays.
20. You no longer even want ketchup for your French Fries.
21. Christmas is incomplete without Gluhwein at a castle.
22. You sing "Tsch├╝ss" instead of saying Good Bye.
23. Your children no longer say please or thank you ... it is bitte and danke.
24. You wonder how you ever lived without Rouladens.
25. You wear a scarf every singe day .... even in the summer.
26. You plan your route around ESSO locations.
27. You believe AFN is quality programming.
28. You own shoes just for walking .... and know you will walk everywhere.
29. You no longer need Google Translate at the grocery store and last but not least ....
30. You have said out loud at least once .... Damn Americans!! on Sundays.
My favorite is number 23.  We are hearing W say Danke.  The boy cant say Thank you in English but hes got in down in German.  He has obviously heard it enough from us.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Cologne (Koln) Day by Camera

Thanks to our new camera being stuck in customs, we got a family day in Cologne today.  It was awesome!  Not the camera being stuck in customs part... that was a mess getting it.  It has taken us 2 weeks to get that silly thing.  But, we have it now and the time together today in this magnificent city was worth every email, phone call, moment waiting in line, etc.  We are exhausted but there is soooooo much more for all of us to see and do in this city that we will be going back!  My guess is we will be traveling back at least 2 or 3 more times to see it all. 

This city is the 3rd largest here in the country and it is full of history.  The history spans from Roman times, to the world wars, to present modern day.  They have a historical cathedral that has an awesome history behind it. Roman buildings, one of which is now the local city hall and is surrounded by an active archeological site and research area that can be toured.  They have several museums, one of which I can't wait to see because it supposedly hosts more Picasso art than any other in the world. A famous bridge which many travel to place a lock on. I can't forget the Rhine river with the ferry boat, passenger boats and dinner cruisers.  Awe!  And our favorite, the chocolate factory!  For the kids they have a theme park, and another park of some sort for kids, a zoo, aquarium and botanical gardens.  I could go on but I wont bore you anymore.  I was excited by this place!  It was exactly an hour and a half drive from the house so it is a perfect day trip place for all of us. 

We had another hot hot day with a high of 94 but we survived thanks to lots of water, candy, pizza, ice cream, chocolate and donner meat.   Thankfully we walked a ton today too. 

I'll show you the day in pictures for now and fill in all the details soon.

We are on a side street just enjoying the walk.  We occasionally enjoy doing the un-tourist routes.  As we walked down the street and passed by some side streets we noticed a local candy store that Makes its own candy from scratch.  We stopped in and K got a kick out of watching them make the candy, trying a few small samples and of course, buying some.

K soaking in a fountain before going in to the famous Cologne Cathedral.  Of course, we had to take a dip before leaving the area too.

Cologne Cathedral  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cologne_Cathedral  This structure is majestic!  These pictures do Not do it any justice.  The history that resides here is amazing.  I can't imagine what it has been through.  If you have not seen the pictures of the damage around this building from WWII then look it up on the internet.  The pictures are surprising. 

Arch above the entrance.  Look at the detail.



St Martin Church is closest and in the distance are 2 L shaped glass buildings.  We walked through the beautiful and relaxing city park along the river.  The kids loved seeing all the ferries and passenger boats.  Next time we'll have to ride on the ferry.

 I had to check out the Locks of love on Hohenzollern Bridge.  I've heard about it for many years.  I have to remember to get a lock for next time though.

Looking back toward the cathedral from the bridge.  It towers over the city.

Time to try out the famous and delicious Chocolate factory of Lindt.   ummmm, I can't wait.  I love their stuff.
 W gets a free bite too.
 I'd like to try to eat this mold but I have no idea if I could stomach it as well as how long it would take.  Would it be good by the time I finished it?
I wanted to buy some extra chocolate to send back to family but I was afraid either we would eat it before it made it to whomever or it would melt before making it to whomever.  So, please know we were thinking about you all as we shopped but I'll have to wait until it is cooler both here and there to send ya anything. 

 Left is the cathedral and the right building is St Martin Church.

 City Hall and archeological site. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cologne_City_Hall

 W impressed with the trains. 

Train station


Monday, July 29, 2013

He got one

W found a car.  We searched high and low for many days/weeks.  He has test driven at least 10 to 20 cars.  We have looked on base at local base families cars who are leaving and needing to sell theirs, thoses leaving from Ramste!n too, local dealerships, we even had a local germ@n friend trying to help us find a good deal and then, this car popped up on a website we were watching.  It was located in a small town outside of Ramste!n for sale by a G family so we had to drive 2 hours one way on 3 separate occasions.  I don't think the base or locals I'm not sure which but they don't make it easy for us to get a car here.  Needless to say though, W got a Mercedes before me.  TURKEY!  I like it ...although I haven't been able to drive it because I still need to pass my driving test.  Can you say...Studying!!!  Hopefully I will pass it on the first time. 

It will look good parked it that big garage of his!  It is in excellent condition!  Congrats hon!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Folklore Festival in B!tburg

This was a fun event to see.  Sadly we didn't have time to enjoy ALL of it because who knew, in this country, parades can take up to... wait for it...  5 hours!  This event was fun to see and experience but it is AN Experience.  The dancers were from All over.  Here are a few pictures I took.  K had a blast hearing All the singing and seeing all the dancing. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Med Group Picnic

The clinic had an afternoon outside together.  Thankfully the weather was beautiful!  We enjoyed the games, food, meeting people, music etc.  I think we may like it here. 

Second time around and daddy is giving his lil one chocolate at a young age already... W discovers a smore.  He liked it. 

W has been walking the past 2 weeks...  hands in the air like he just don't care...  :) 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Fresh Starts

Here are a few pictures I snapped of the house today.  None of which have been edited yet but I wanted to share them so you can see what the inside of our pink house looks like.  I am getting really excited about moving in and getting things settled and together so we can enjoy our time together and travel or play ...whichever it is.  I'll post the outside even though you have seen them and what I took of  the inside thus far.  Enjoy!  And, COME SEE US!!!

Schleid Area
 Front view (off to side some)

 side of house

Back side of house

Ready...  here is the inside minus the furniture...
Yes, the kitchen is orange.  It's not dark like it looks in the pictues however.  This kitchen sold me from the start for several reasons.  First, it is huge!  Second, it has more cabinet space than 98% of the other homes we saw.  Third, it has a ton of light streaming in...7 windows to be exact!  There is also a decent amount of countertop space - a true luxury in this country.  Then, my favorite things were...  it has double ovens, double refridgerators, and a huge walk in pantry (NO other home we saw had this feature)  and a corner space for other misc. things.  Awesomeness waiting for a good family. 

Pantry space.  There are 2 great wood shelving units on the right and the extra refridge on the left. Plus plenty of floor space for whatever.

This is the kitchen dining space.

Here is a view looking at our front door.  Ill have to add pics from the outside front door area when we go back on Wed.  You can see the stairs going up or the stairs leading down to the basement.  The first door on the left closest to the front door is a small half bath but it's Much bigger than our last home. What we will use as the guest room will be the 2nd door you can barley see on the left.  The landlord built this as a master bedroom but we wanted to be upstairs for several reasons this time.  This bedroom is just a bit smaller than the room we picked upstairs but it has a few odd walls that our furniture may not work as well with and you'll see why we loved the room upstairs more soon.
soon to be our guest room  (carport area and garage are seen out the left window)

This is the huge den area.  The pictures do not do it justice!  The walls are grey and a beautiful deep red.  There is a glass door that I will be able to shut so Wy cannot go up or down the stairs without us...yes, they have keys to them too so I can lock them!  : ) You can see the pink in the back windows, that is again where the garage area is.  There are doors just before you get to the red space that open to an outdoor patio space where we will put our table and chairs.

 This is in our den looking back toward the front of the house.  The kitchen is the doorway in the back middle.  The left door goes to the front and the doors on the right go to the patio/driveway area.

This should be our guest bathroom but again we will be upstairs so we will mostly use that one except this one has the only tub.  We discovered that most homes only have 1 tub. Normally it is in the master bath and all other bathrooms have a shower or just a sink and toilet.  This bathroom gets a ton of natural lighting. 

So now we are going upstairs...

 This room is more peach than pink and we are not sure if K will take it just yet... it is a bit smaller than the other room upstairs but we are working on her b/c we'd like to not paint and our landlord has been really busy and would prefer to not paint also.  We will see if it will be hers or not.  If she takes the other room she will have to live with it being blue and we will have to paint this one something for W.  It's a good size room though.  The view is out to the front side of the house.  Not the best view but still nice with plenty of light.  There is a huge walk in area just before this room that we will all use as a closet space.

Nice space before the peachy pink room for a good closet.

 What we will use as a master/family bathroom.  It will be nice having the washer and dryer up here with all of us too.  When we were looking at houses the washer/dryer were placed everywhere in homes.  Bathrooms, kitchens, hallways, garages, dark basements, you name it.  I will have to go on some antique or used furniture hunts to find some dressers for this bathroom and a few other spaces to help with storage in the house.  There are lots of nooks and crannies to place some pretty things.

This is the 2nd bedroom upstairs.  It may or may not be W's.  It makes an L shape and overlooks the backyard or garage driveway area. 

 I will post pics of our room soon.  The landlord was painting it for us so it was a mess.  I cant wait to sleep and relax in there.

This is the stairwell leading down to the main level.  You can barley see the front door.  The view out of the ceiling window is amazing!

 Now we are back to the main floor and looking at the stairs leading into the basement area.

This is down in the basement.  This is the biggest room there. This room is huge.  As big as our loft space in SA.  It will be great for the kids toys etc.  There are 3 rooms of the right of it and an unfinished half bathroom as well as an under stairs space on the left and a mechanical/equipment room on the left too.

 The landlord actually purchased this home on foreclosure and has finished it out thinking he would live here but his girlfriend has yet to be convinced.  : )  You can tell he loves this place. 

 THIS is the GORGEOUS VIEW in OUR backyard!

 My 3 loves.

W and W walking toward the compost area and the back tree line.  On the other side of that tree line is the soccer field.  : )

This is in the back yard looking toward the front of the house.  You can see the patio space I was talking about off of the den just behind my car.  You can also see how close or not close the neighbors are. 

I'll post more pics soon...
Can't wait to share it with all of you.  Come see us!