Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Germany Part III - Nuremberg

Nuremberg has one of the largest and most famous Christmas Advent markets in the world. I heard about the markets from my parents and other friends who had been stationed in Europe. We planned our trip during Thanksgiving so we could experience the market (opens on the first Friday of Advent) and I'm so glad we did!! I didn't take enough pictures of the different stalls which I wish I had. We love going from stall to stall and buying ornaments. We also did some food sampling with yummy sausages and gluhwein. All the red stripes are the many stalls to visit, awesome!!

Enjoying some gluhwein in the cold!

I bought a nutcracker at this store. It had so many things I wanted to buy!!

The best part of our day!

The Christmas angel came out onto the church balcony along with trumpeters. She said some stuff in German, officially opening the Advent market and then everyone sang "Silent Night" in German~ AMAZING!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Germany Part II- A Fairy Tale Castle

One reason our home base was Munich was it's proximity to Neuschwanstein Castle. This is the castle that was the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty's Castle. We took a gray line tour that went to 2 of Mad King Ludwig Castle's as well as Oberammergau. Neuchwanstein was our last stop and it was perfect. There is a little town at the bottom of the hill. Hill, yes the castle sits on top of a hill- I would say mountain after climbing to the top :) There was a carriage you could ride but we decided to make the climb, it's all about the experience. It was a beautiful day and although it was cold it was a nice walk.
Poor King Ludwig lived in the castle less than a year and only 15 out of the 200+ rooms are complete. Over 1 million people visit each year and it was opened to tourist less than 2 months after his death.

Showing the way to get to the castle

This is my favorite picture...

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Germany- Part 1

I love traveling in Europe! I love riding trains, seeing beautiful buildings, trying new food (okay, so that's not completely true as I'm not a big fan of trying new things but I try to step out of my box a little bit when traveling), and seeing all the places I've only seen in pictures! So far, Germany is at the top of my list for all those things!

I was born in Grafenwoehr, Germany (yes, I had to look up had to spell the city :) while my dad was in the Army. We left before I was 2 so I don't remember anything but I've always wanted to go back. I visited Munich while when I was doing my student teaching in London. We were there for less than 24 hours so I knew I wanted to go back and really see more of the country.

We choose Munich as our home base due to it's close proximity to several areas I wanted to visit. Since we were going at Thanksgiving we knew it would be cold and it was! Our first stop was Salzburg.

I seriously wish we had the train system that Europe does, it's awesome!!

Marienplatz, Munich

Glockenspiel, Munich

Somewhere outside Salzburg

Hohensalzburg Castle, Salzburg

Tuesday, January 17, 2012



July 2010

Wow! Hawaii is amazing and I was so excited to get to visit. I had always wanted to go and when my parents decide to take us on a cruise around the islands it was a dream come true. Since Steve and I have most of July off we decided to spend some extra time on two islands before the whole family arrived.

Our first island was Maui. Maui was awesome and we did lots while we were there including driving the Road to Hana, the Old Lahaina Luau, and snorkeling. We even fit in some beach time as well. Next we flew to Kauai which was fabulous. My favorite thing we did there was a photography tour. We were with a guide as well as another couple from NYC. Our tour guide took us to areas off the beaten path to get some awesome pics. I loved using my camera to bring back some outstanding pics. Kauai has so many places to photograph that it makes it easy. We also did a helicopter tour- awesome!!After our initial visit to 2 islands we were off to the capital city of Honolulu to meet my family for some more hang time! Honolulu was so different than the other cities we had visited- so different! It was loud and there were a ton of people everywhere. We had fun but I like the quiet beaches of Kauai and Maui more. We did enjoy a day at The Polynesian Cultural Center which was awesome, like Epcot for Hawaii. We went to the luau as a family which was so fun.

Then we headed out on our cruise. We visited 4 islands including Maui, the Big Island and Kauai plus Oahu. We did a hike in Maui that took us to beautiful waterfalls. In Hilo we visited Volcanoes National Park which was cool (or hot, hmmmm). Snorkeling was our next adventure in Kona. It was the best snorkeling we've ever done- a little cold though :) Our last stop was Kauai where the whole family went snorkeling. My parents had done something else the day before so it was exciting to get all geared up together. As we now say- A family that snorkels together, stays together!

We enjoyed cruising the islands, the best way to see the many different faces of Hawaii. The whole family had an amazing time and I'm already looking forward to going back!

Monday, January 16, 2012

We'll see how this goes...

So it's been awhile. A long time actually. I had thoughts to do a blog a few months ago but I couldn't sign in for some reason so here I am today.

I met someone for the first time yesterday but I told her I felt like I've known her and her family for years. Why, well because I read her blog of course! I connected to this person via a college friend and in a small world coincidence her husband lead Drew's group for Chi Alpha. Anyway, this meeting has spurred me on to try blogging again. How often and how long who knows but I'm doing it today :) I love staying connected to people and facebook has been great for that but there's something about reading a story that a high school friend has posted to his blog... you just feel like you just chatted with them. So here some updates on us...

Daily Life:

We continue to work at our same jobs. For me working with 550 4-10 year olds makes each day different than the day before. As with most school districts in Texas mine is facing cutbacks. Currently my school is "safe" from closing but I'm not sure about what will happen with my current position. Counselors are not required so we'll see. Steve is enjoying a new semester with 200+ math students. We've really enjoyed watching Baylor sports this fall and winter. We went down to cheer on the Bears at the Alamo bowl and have seen several basketball games.

Since last time I blogged we have visited Hawaii, Germany and some of the Northeast. I think Germany is my new favorite. Could it be that we were there during an amazing time (Advent) or that fact that I was born there, who knows but I LOVE it. Hawaii was incredible- breathtaking and 20+ days in Washington D.C., NYC, Philly, Atlantic City and Boston were fabulous too. We don't have any trips planned as of now but summer will be here soon and I know we'll be off again. We will also be cruising sometime soon.


Yes, we are still in the process of an adoption. We've been waiting 4 years now- yes FOUR years! The most recent referral group were from August 2006 so we have some time before they get to January 2008 referrals. Honestly I don't think about it. I've put the paperwork away. I get updates monthly from our agency and that's it.

Okay, for today that's all. I hope that everyone has a superb day!

Cin ;-)