Thursday, June 18, 2009

The great vacation we had (but can't show you)

Last week, from the 7th to the 14th, we stayed at a cabin at a family resort in the Black Forest region (about an hour from Munich). The resort is called Edelweiss, and is run by the US Military MWR.

We spent a lot of time bike riding, swimming, hiking, and eating at fantastic restaurants (TripAdvisor is a great tool for scouting out restaurants before traveling!) We came back with tons of pictures -- over 200, actually, and I loaded them into our computer. Before I could get a chance to upload them to my Flickr account or back them up on our 2nd hard drive... the main external hard drive crashed. I dearly hope that I can find a company that can retrieve all of the lost data, but this means that those pictures are currently lost. So you'll just have to believe me when I say that we had a wonderful time as a family, and saw gorgeous mountians (the Bavarian Alps), visited a castle (Neuschwanstein, which Disney used as the inspiration for their logo) and rode all over on our bikes with our cute little kids.

When we got home, there were two boxes waiting for Elijah from Aunt Terry and Grandma Annette, and Aunt Mary Ann and Uncle Bob. Each box included another in the line of Sprig Toys -- a big hit! They've been in constant play since the boxes were opened.

Thank you everyne!!

Now this photo, especially for my mom: my tomatoes are finally all staked up!

Also, I just got these new shoes in the mail. I'm suddenly obsessed with 80's inspired shoes.

You can get your own here if you're similarly inclined.

And last but not least, here's the final pictures of the shawl I wove for Aunt Susie. It's currently on it's way over to her. I hope it makes it there safely!

Now we're off for another two weeks of adventures!

Oh, and Greg says that if you are a Ghoti Hook fan and were within 1 hour of Philadelphia last week but did not see the Ghoti Hook reunion show, you're a total looser. But if you click on the link, you can pretend you were there anyway.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Date night!

Greg and I went out on a double date on Friday night with our friends, Nick and Heather.

We went to this tapas place, and ordered every single tapas on the menu, hot and cold. (These pictured here are only the cold ones -- I got caught up in the eating, and didn't take a picture when all of the hot ones hit the table.)

It ended up being the exact, perfect amount of food for all of us, which was pretty amazing. It was so fun to be able to take little bites of all kinds of different things, rather than committing to one entree.

Heather and I each got a sangria, which I'd never had before, because they can be cloyingly sweet. This restaurant, however, makes their own from scratch (wine, fruit juice and fruit), and it was totally perfect and refreshing.


Cheese plate

My dessert ("Nougot Variation")

Outside the restaurant we saw a Google cam car, which amused all of us. (Maybe we'll end up on Google maps!)

I think these two people were the Google people. Not sure, but it's fun to speculate.

We had a great night out together, relaxing and fun. It's good to have a night away from the children from time to time.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Happy 4th birthday Elijah!

Elijah's birthday isn't until the 8th of this month, but since a bunch of boxes came for him this week, we decided to let him open them this morning.

Greg and I got him a child-sized electric guitar with amp.

Elijah loves strumming along on full sized guitars with Greg, so we got him this so that he can take lessons at the next place we live.

He loves it.

A box from my parents with candy.

Also from my parents were these awesome, chunky, tough trucks made out of recycled plastic and sawdust. When you pump them up and down, they generate their own electricity to light up the little hard-hat guys (no batteries needed!).

They smell like wood, but have the feel of tough plastic. We've been teaching Andrew and Elijah to be more gentle on their toys lately; hopefully these will last with no breaking regardless. They're made by Sprig Toys, which Cool Mom Picks reviewed here. I want to get the whole line now. These are seriously well made. I'll have to do a follow up on how well they survive our house.

From Poppy and Nana (Greg's parents):

Toys!! Trucks!! Bowling set! A dog! Clothing! Candy!!


This little plastic dude drives a Bass Pro Shop Hummer, which has a tow cable. This was very popular with both boys.

Here's some footage of them with all of the new stuff:

And the bowling set:

Elijah says "THANK YOU!" to everyone.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Soldier Appreciation Day

Yesterday, we went to a post-wide Soldier Appreciation Day. I don't even want to know how much money they blew on it, but it was really fun for all of us. Free rides, food, and several bands playing as entertainment. We spent most of the day there.

Greg and some others formed a band downrange (in Iraq), so of course they played:

My favorite band member.

Yes, I am a groupie. Can't help myself.

Little dude slept through some of their set, even though it was loud.

Lavella wore ear protection, which she thought was cool at first, but then she realized she was tired and crabby.

The children enjoyed several of the rides. The bumper cars, however, were a little too big for them to reach the pedals, so this was kind of a problem for some.

Andrew and Lavella had a good attitude though, and had a great time on the little train just next to the bumper cars console.

Later on, Elijah decided he'd go on it after all, as long as he could be the conductor.

(And of course by that point, Andrew had a bad attitude and didn't want to ride it. ~sigh~)

The bouncy castle was fun for everyone.

As was the carousel.

By the time we got home it was bedtime. It was a full day, but a fun one.

"Splashwater" and little bouncer

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Entirely unrelated

The other day, Greg took the three older children out to ride bikes. Apparently, they found some mud.

I've bought a bike now too, and have started riding again for the first time in at least 10 years. It's a little intimidating, because now I'm also responsible for Jonah in the babyseat behind me.

Last weekend, we had Nick and Heather over for dinner with their two children. They each have babyseats on their bikes, so they lent us their kid-trailer. We put Elijah and Lavella in it, Andrew road his own bike, and all 10 of us set out for a 40 minute bike ride while I had dinner cooking in the crock pot. I don't have any pictures (shocking, I know), but it was a lot of fun. They've loaned us the trailer for our upcoming vacation so that we can ride around together as a family.


Rapeseed causes many people allergy problems around here with all of the pollen the flowers release, but each spring I enjoy watching the fields explode into electric yellow.

Continuing to be unrelated:

Cute pictures with no captions needed.

Also, these little cheeks are just delicious.