Sunday, August 29, 2004

Over the weekend we went to another open-air museum, just a 1/2 hour from the house. This one had typical buildings from this area, it was actually very different than the one we went to in the Black Forest. Interesting to compare the differences in the way the homes/barns were built for different purposes in different regions. It's a huge tract of land, with many homes they have moved there. Most have gardens and even some farm animals to give you an idea of how the farms worked at that time. When we first arrived there was a shepherd with his flock, and his sheep dog, in the parking lot. They were doing a great job of trimming the grass, and that dog was really busy. I took a few pictures, I will try and get them up in the next few days. It was really fun to watch the dog herd the sheep, and the sheep could care less that we were there. There were a few of them fighting over an apple, we had to drag Jacob out of the way since they were about to run him over trying to get at that apple.

We mowed our yard that afternoon and thought that it would have been nice to have the sheep over instead. We shouldn't have to mow much more, it is cooling down enough that the grass is slowing down.

Friday, Jacob and I went to the Playmobil Park again, Jacob had a blast. We went with some friends from bible study, it was a fun trip. If you remember, we had gone when my Mom was here back in May. It was warmer this time so Jacob was able to do some more, plus he is a little bigger. He climbs much higher now, and wants to go to the top of everything. And he loves to play in their giant sand pit!

This week Kenny's Mom arrives, Jacob is very excited. We will be traveling for a few days and then back home the rest of the time, so I will post when I can. Just thought I would let everyone know in case I didn't put up a new post for a while.

Monday, August 23, 2004

I just realized I haven't posted in almost a week, but also realized I don't really have anything to say. So it will write some random thoughts/happenings, that aren't enough for an entire blog post on their own.

I could ramble on all day with these minor things but it's time to go outside and enjoy the weather. It won't be too long and I will be writing that it is snowing and cold, and I will have plenty of time to mess with the computer.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Last night the Kirchweih fest ended with a bang, actually about 20 minutes worth. I could see the fireworks from our upstairs window and they were really good. Also really loud, but that's to be expected. I ran into a friend and her husband at the barber shop today, they live down inside the old town area. So they were even closer to the fireworks than we were. We were discussing how long they lasted and why they were having them. Her husband (who is home from Iraq on a 2 week R&R pass) said it sounded a lot like listening to the mortars fly at your camp in Iraq, but at least you are pretty sure the Germans aren't shooting them at you. So the fireworks are more enjoyable in that aspect.
I'm sure he was thrilled to hear that start up outside his window while he's home trying to have some R&R....

Monday, August 16, 2004

We went to Wildpark Bad Mergentheim on Friday with some friends from my bible study. It was about an hours drive from the house and was really great. Not too big and lots for the kids to do. All the animals were in natural settings, seemed like you were walking through the woods the whole time. In the picture, Jacob was trying to climb the fence to go see some chickens that were running around in the woods. They had a petting zoo and a nice playground, we all brought lunch and had a picnic. We had a big rainstorm while we were there, but luckily it only lasted about 15 minutes. Then the skies cleared up again. I will post some pictures on the photo site of the zoo a little later. Kenny has been working all weekend, they had a project that needed to get finished over the weekend. We did find time to go to the Kirchweih fest here in Wolframs-Eschenbach, it was very small but had all the things a fest normally has. A few rides, food and a beer tent with music. We saw most of our neighbors, it appeared that everyone in town was there. It was just outside the old city walls, so we were able to walk down to it and hang out for a little while.

On a happier note, quite a few of the deployed soldiers have been able to come home for their R&R trips. At church on Sunday a friend had her husband with her, and one of Jacob's playmates has his Dad home right now. I don't think everyone gets the R&R but it is really great for the ones that do. Hopefully most will be able to get the 2 weeks at home with their families.

The weather has been hot, then we had one cold day (high of about 60) and now it is just nice! Not too hot and not too cold, and lots of sunshine. Hope this hangs around for more than today!

Monday, August 09, 2004

We have been staying busy around here, going to the pool a lot, to the playground, and other fun stuff. Last week we went down to the market in Ansbach to get some fruit and veggies, and whatever else we could find. I put some pictures of it on the photo site, in the "everyday pics" section. Here is a link to that page. We got some great cheese down there that day, I'm going to have to visit that cart more often. He had all kinds of cheese from all over Europe. And he was very helpful as to what kind was strong/mild/for cooking etc. Kenny went fishing on Sunday, and Jacob joined him for a while. We tried to have a picnic but were chased away by the bees/wasps. We're not sure what they are but they are really bad this summer and hurt like crazy if they sting you. And the rest of the weekend was spent walking around the neighborhood or relaxing on the patio in the back yard.

Today we met some kids at the playground on post, and then had some lunch. On the way home Jacob and I stopped at the "self-cut" flower field and got some gladiolas for the house. They had a lot of sunflowers, Jacob liked running around in them. They towered over him so he thought that was cool. We have some that we grew in our garden at home, but just a few. And he's not allowed to run through our flower garden LOL. There are more photos of the flower field adventure on the photo site if you want to check them out. This week should be busy, nothing special but lots of small activities all week long. We are looking forward to a trip to an animal park on Friday with the ladies group from church, as long as it's not raining. We've got to get out and do as much as possible before winter gets here, and so far we haven't wasted a single sunny minute!

Friday, August 06, 2004

After Jacob had a nap, or "a little rest" as he likes to call it, we went out for some more fun. We went to the rodelbahn, which is like a bobsled without snow. I posted about one last month I think, they are a ton of fun. You hop on your cart and you are towed up the hill, like a roller coaster. Then at the top you are released and on your way down. You can control the brakes with a lever on the cart, and that's all there is to it. Jacob loved it, we had to do it a couple times. We had some dinner, and then headed downtown to window shop and have some ice cream. We weren't aware but they were having a parade that evening, and we were in the perfect viewing area for it. It was great, lots of the traditional Bavarian clothing and music. There are more pics of the parade on the photo site as well, link is in previous posts or up on sidebar. The parade was such fun, Jacob was pretty impressed. He wanted to march the rest of the night just like the people in the parade. After it was over we headed back to the hotel for bed.

The next morning we woke up and had breakfast, then checked out and headed for
Munich Zoo. It's a really big and sprawling zoo, and got very crowded as the day went on. I can't think of anything that made it stand out from other zoos, although the "American animal" section was interesting. Never really thought about America having a section at the zoo. There were bison and longhorn steer, animals like that. There was a goat feeding area, and like all goat feeding areas the goats were very pushy. But friendly, I think Jacob touched every single one in the pen. It got really hot, so we finished up and headed for home. Of course, the dreaded "STAU" signs were flashing again so we had a slow ride home, but at least we were in the comfortable a/c. It was a great weekend, weather was good, we did so many fun things.

We have been busy this week going to the schwimmbad, downtown market, and Bible study. No big plans for the weekend, just hanging around the house.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

So, as I was saying in my earlier post, we decided on Thursday night to go to Garmisch on Friday afternoon. The weather forecast was perfect and we decided it would be a great weekend to get away. We ran into so much traffic on the autobahns - the little signs were up flashing "STAU" (German word meaning - you are going to be sitting here for a while). It is truly a four letter word when you are traveling on the autobahns. But we finally got down to our hotel about an hour later than planned, and settled in for the night. We stayed the same place we did last time, the Hotel Forsthaus.

Saturday morning we woke up and the weather looked great, so we decided to splurge and go to the top of the Zugspitze.It is the highest mountain in Germany, and we have always wanted to go, but we wanted to wait until the weather was clear so we could fully enjoy the views. Saturday appeared to be the perfect day for it so we headed over to the Eibsee ( a beautiful lake at the base of the Zugspitze) to start our ascent. We got our tickets (43Euros for Kenny and I, and Jacob was free) and decided to take the cable car up the summit. It is about a 10 minute ride straight up, with amazing views of the lake and the surrounding area. At the top we stopped to layer up our clothes, it was much cooler up there. But with the sun it was very pleasant, not too cold at all. There was a little guy at the top playing one of those alpine horns, you can click here to hear it. The quality may not be the best, and hopefully it won't take to long to download. But at least you get the idea of the music. The views from all around are awesome, and it's possible to scale the last little bit out to the actual highest point. Kenny decided to do that, Jacob and I watched from the safety of the observation deck. You can check out pics of him out there on the photo site. Once he made it back safely we went to an inside observation deck to enjoy the view and plan our return trip down the summit. Jacob was coloring and of course wearing his little hat from the Black Forest, apparently he looks quite Bavarian. A lady came up and was asking us something, all we could figure out was "photograph" and she had her camera. I thought she wanted us to take a picture of her and her companions, but then she clarified in English. She wanted to take a picture of Jacob, to show her family and friends back in Russia. But once she realized we were American she said "Oh, I thought he was a real Bavarian child" I said, "well, he lives in Bavaria, but he's not Bavarian". She replied "Well, I just won't tell the people in Russia that" and took his photo. We had a good laugh over that.
We decided to take a different cable car down to the Zugspitzeplatt, an area just a little below the summit. This is the area that is the center for skiing in cooler months and also home to Germany's highest church. It is only a few minutes in the cable car to that area. We wandered around there for a bit, Jacob enjoyed playing in the snow. Then we caught the cog-wheel train that took us back to the base, although half of the ride was inside the mountain. It was beautiful once we came out of the tunnel, and we arrived right back where we started. After that we headed back to the hotel so Jacob could have a nap, and then went back out for more fun when he woke up. Next post I will finish up the remainder of our trip!

Monday, August 02, 2004

We went away for a quick trip over the weekend, back down to Garmisch. I will post details of our trip later, but I did get all the pictures up on the photo site just now. It took me long enough to type in all the descriptions and sort through them all that I will take a break from the computer now. :)

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