TBT: Fourth of July

Throwback to our last July 4th in the United States. Look at those little peanuts! They were heading out to the county parade, decked out in red, white, and blue. (And stitches for Miss C, ha!) We won’t be making it to the base for festivities this year, but we look forward to introducing Junior to our great American holiday next year!

Last Day of the Year

We slept through breakfast yesterday, so this morning was the first time we ventured downstairs for the huge buffet our hotel offers each day. While the kids stuck with the pastries and Nutella, Martin and I went a bit more traditional. These were my dishes: fruit, fish, and meat/cheese slices with fresh bread. Lola was brave, and tried my fish. She asked if she can have a German breakfast tomorrow, too.

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That First Day in Germany

It should surprise nobody that I carried my external hard drives during our journey. That’s why I’m able to pull up this photo taken more than 15 years ago, my first day in Germany EVER as a foreign exchange student. It’s not Throwback Thursday yet, but you’re just gonna have to tolerate this flood of memories as they come back to me.

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We Made it to Germany

We had the back of the plane all to ourselves! We are the last two rows of three before the three-three-three rows start. Sort of like first-class, but in reverse. 😉 Comfy, excited, thrilled, exhausted, happy, amazed, and ready!

We are finally at our hotel here in Stuttgart after such an adventure! Our 25-minute flight from Frankfurt was delayed by 50 minutes, only 8 of our 17 bags arrived to Stuttgart, and after the hour it took to file those claims, we arrived at the car rental place to learn they gave away our reserved minivan because we were two hours late to pick it up. Yikes!!

The good news?!

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Up, Up, and Away

I’m typing this at the airport, waiting with the rest of the family to board the plane that’s going to carry us across the ocean to our new life in Germany. It’s funny: even though we’ve been working/hoping/wishing for this day for more than a year now, it’s really hard to believe it’s actually happening now.

While it’s been so crazy chaotic the past 24 hours, I’ve been peeking at my cell phone throughout the day, taking advantage of my final hours with this particular phone service. I’ve become verklempt many times over as I’ve read the sweetest notes, posts, and texts of encouragement from so many friends and family members. I’ve shared them with Martin, read them aloud to the kids. We appreciate all of it so much.

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Painting. Painting. And more painting.


We’ve been living in a hotel for more than a week. It feels like we’ve been here much longer than that, though. It’s all been a blur. We checked into the hotel the day the movers drove off with all our belongings. The next day, we enjoyed a nice day of swimming in the hotel pool and visiting with friends, but Martin and the younger two were feeling a bit under the weather.

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Paint Work on Christmas Eve

The man is a machine. German-engineering at its finest.

We got the estimate two days ago for how much it will cost to have folks come in and paint our house. Though feverish and helpless in our hotel room, Martin took one look, raised his fists, and defiantly yelled, “NOOOOOOOO! We will paint the house OURSELVES!!” Continue reading