Sunday, 29 November 2009

26 Nov -- Garmisch Thanksgiving: Neuschwanstein Castle

On Thanksgiving morning, we went to Neuschwanstein Castle. There is a bus or horse drawn carriage that can take you to the top, but where is the challenge in that? Instead, we pushed Charlie (40 pounds) and Jane (30 pounds) plus stoller (30 pounds) up the hill for 20 minutes straight. It was a great workout!






Almost there!



At the gate.







The castle was the inspiration for the Disney logo.

25 Nov -- Garmisch Thanksgiving: Linderhof Palace

The second half of the day without the kids we spent at Linderhof Palace. It is were King Ludwig II of Bavaria spent the last 8 years of his life.



Not a cloud in the sky.

Why hello there...


Welcome to my palace.


I think I was the inspiration for their bathroom sign.

The view from our room.

25 Nov -- Garmisch Thanksgiving: Dachau Concentration Camp

We just got back from our Thanksgiving Trip to Garmisch, Germany. We stayed at the Edelweiss Lodge and Resort and had a blast. The weather was awesome!
The first full day there, we got Charlie and Jane in the CDC so we could go to the Dachau Concentration Camp located just outside Munich. It was a very powerful place.

Main gate were the prisoners entered.


"Work makes one free."



"Brausebad" translates to showerbath. The gas chamber at Dachau was made relatively late during WWII and was never used for mass killings.


Sunday, 22 November 2009

22 Nov -- Balance Bike in Motion

Here is a video of Charlie cruising on his balance bike.

video

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

18 Nov -- The Sun Finally Shines!

You know it's been a long time since we've seen the sun when your 3 year old points it out through the window. So after naptime, we bundled up and headed out to get our vitamin D fix. It was windy, but beautiful. We went to the open grassy area/parking lot at the elementary school next door to us.

Some people were asking about Charlie's balance bike. It's a two wheeler that has no pedals. So you start by walking/running with it, then you learn to pick up your feet and balance. Charlie is getting pretty good at it, but he loves letting the hills in our town do the work for him. I posted a lot of pics of him on the bike to give you a good idea of how it works, but I'll try to get video footage of it when Dan gets home with our other camera.





He walk/rides the bike to the top of that little hill behind him and then can go for 15-20 seconds of "balance" time coasting.

What's that bright light that's blinding me, Mama? Oh, the sun...

I still doubt his ability to "steer", but we haven't had any run ins...yet

Amazingly (to Jane), Charlie spotted Jane hiding behind that tree during hide and seek

There was no set up for this pic, I swear!

Yeah, I've got a runny nose, but I'm still gorgeous

Hmmm, these leaves were fun before, but now they're just wet

He's hard to capture on film sometimes

He's running the zig zag pattern in an effort to avoid the camera

Saturday, 14 November 2009

14 Nov -- Outside Pics!

Finally some new pics of the kids (as if they've changed that much in 2 weeks?!)

Edited: In Charlie's picture, you'll note the shorts. He picked out and dress himself that morning without any assistance. When I suggested he might change into some warmer pants before we went outside, he stated firmly, "I want to be cold". I did manage to convince him to wear the coat, but I have to say, he did not complain once about his wardrobe choice.
Jane showing off the 2 teeth that you can see

Just wanted to show off her curls

Charlie on his balance bike

Jane playing in the little house up at the Kindergarten near our home


Staying hydrated

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

10 Nov -- More Updates, No Pictures

This past weekend I had a babysitter come so I could do some grocery shopping without kids in tow. It was so nice and I forget about how quickly things get done when you aren't toting along any toddlers. In the two hours I was gone, I browsed the BX, did some major grocery shopping, bought gas (which is beyond a pain over here) and ate lunch at a German McDonalds (Site of a recent major meltdown. I'm actually surprised they didn't have my picture up with a notice not to allow me on the premises).

Then Sunday we headed to the library where I like to run up and down the aisle grabbing books that look good based on their spines. I can't even stop to "judge a book by it's cover. They place the aisles so close together that both sides are within easy reach of a child on your back in a baby carrier. It's as if they like watching your head explode as your child pulls every book off the shelves in their reach. And as you're frantically bent over picking up the books they just dropped, they are reaching for the lower shelves now accessible to them. Charlie managed to grab 2 more Curious George books for his selected reading before we bolted just as Jane started to lose it.

Today Charlie went to the CDC (daycare) on base for the day. I picked him up about the time they were getting ready to head outside to play. He immediately informed me that I was to leave and come back only after they had been outside. This from the kid who gave me nothing but grief for 8 months about going to the daycare before this. Thankfully, while I was getting ready to do just that and give myself a little more "Me" time, he changed his mind and ran to me with tears asking me not to leave him. It's good to know I haven't lost the magic touch.

Also, does anyone know how to get rid of weasels? We apparently had them living in the hood of our new car, which we now park in the garage. And last night while I was upstairs helping Charlie with his covers around midnight, I heard the distinct scampering of fairly heavy feet on our roof (which is sloped very low to the ground). Thoughts on this strange situation would be appreciated.

I'll try to get pictures up soon. It's really not stopped raining for the last 2 weeks or so long enough to get any decent ones of the kids outdoors.

Monday, 2 November 2009

2 Nov -- In Other News

While Dan's been gone, we've had some random funny/exciting happenings.

Charlie has developed British tendencies and now only pronounces can't as "C-ahn't" (Not sure if that's a technical phonetic spelling, but you get the picture). Usually it's a frustrated whiney voice, "Mama, I c-ahn't do it myself!!!!!"

Jane has gotten her 3rd tooth! Yes, I realize that she is 18 months old, but apparently she enjoys gumming her food. It's a molar and Dan feels that there is a strategy to the order that she has selected. I can't wait for the next one to arrive...probably sometime around the beginning of 2010.

Charlie recently got a balance bike (let's just say that an overly excited Santa made an early trip to our house). He is getting pretty good at riding it. I'll try to get pictures of him on it this week, if it ever stops raining.

Many mornings I'm awoken to "Excuse me, Mommy. Moooommy, excuse me." in the baby monitor. We're on the main level, while the kids are upstairs (which has benefits and disadvantages). But Charlie has decided that the baby monitor is more like a walkie-talkie and so I'm greeted with his sweet little whisper to let me know that he's awake and would like to come downstairs.

Jane has become a fan of the word "No", but she says it so darn cute and shakes her head that I'm having a hard time getting frustrated with her. Charlie, however, is severely irked when she says "No" to him and it usually progresses into a shouting match until both of them forget the reason for the fight.

So none of these are related, but I wanted to post them before I forgot.