Saturday, October 4, 2014

Preschool Coop

Violet and I were asked to join a Preschool Coop with a few other ladies in our ward.  I had never participated in one before, but it sounded like fun and like something for Violet to do.  Preschools here are pretty pricey, and she has been on the waiting list for the German preschool since we moved here.  I did hear that she was next on the list, so we are hoping that next year that option will open up for her.  But this little preschool coop has been wonderful.  Four kids total, once a week for 2.5 hours.  We just rotate houses each week, and focus on a different letter of the alphabet each time.  For my first week teaching, we did the letter 'K'.  The kids made kites and kangaroo pouches, and went hunting for letter 'k's to put in their pouches.  It was a lot of fun.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Bern-Kastel Kues

Our first outing after we moved here last August was a trip to Bern-Kastel Kues for their annual wine festival.  We had such a great time that we were looking forward to 2015 so we could do it again!  Members of our stake head down early enough to put down blankets all together.  The town is situated along the Mosel river, and when it gets dark enough (like 9:30 pm!), there is an amazing fireworks show that depicts a battle once fought here between a boat and the castle.  Seriously--most amazing fireworks show I've ever seen.  No joke.  I thought we might all have hearing damage afterwards.  Isla was NOT a fan.  Luckily, about half way through she finally decided to stop crying and just let Nate hold her ears shut.  

Before the show starts, we just wander around with friends.  There is one side that is a lot like a carnival or fair.  The kids love that part.  We even let the kids do the trampoline thingy where you are hooked up to a harness and get to bounce super high.  This year we ventured the other way to go purchase some grape juice, and found a whole other side of the party.  Next year we will spend more time there.  There were live bands, adorable buildings, yummy food...much better than carnival rides in my opinion.  ;)  Can't wait for next year!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


Aside from school starting up, we had a lot of things going on in September.  Nate kept busy at work, as usual.  He started up a cool thing where he made custom ear molds for the pilots.  They were pretty excited about it.  He also got put on the Moulage team.  Anytime the base has an exercise in some type of disaster scenario, Nate goes in early to do the 'wound make-up'. He loves it, and it gets him out of staying all day long.  The pictures look pretty sick.  Rest assured, it's all fake ;).  

Sawyer started his first season of soccer.  He was pumped about it.  The excitement didn't quite translate to the field, unfortunately.  I think he spent more time looking at planes and playing with friends than looking for the ball.  Maybe next year...

I picked up some Dirndl's for Violet and Isla while in Garmisch for Girls Camp.  Unfortunately, at the moment, Violet fits in both dresses.  I'm hoping the smaller one fits Isla next summer so we can take some sweet pictures.  Now to find some Lederhosen for the boys...

Violet started Ballet/Tap.  She looks freakin cute in her little leotard and skirt!

Isla started becoming even more of a destroyer.

I took an old school desk from a flea market and painted it red (per Sawyer's request).  It gets used more for legos than for homework, but we are happy with it :).

I also celebrated my 30th Birthday!! Ahh!  When did I get OLD!?!?  My girlfriends threw me an awesome surprise lunch (which I was over 30 minutes late for!!!  whoops!).  And Nate took me out for Thai food.  He also bought me a silhouette (which arrived 2 weeks late)--but he took me to Paris to make up for the late purchase of said present.  So I forgave him ;)  More on that, later. <3 p="">

We got some really fun bath stuff from our German cousins.  Turns the water different colors, makes funny popping noises, etc.  

One of the kids gave Isla some breakfast--lucky charms and bbq chips
We have a great indoor pool on Base and finally started taking advantage of it every now and then.

Nate took the GED (or is it GRE??--can't remember!!) for his orthodontics application.  While in Frankfurt he located a Chipotle and brought some back for me!!!!  That was a good day!

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Saturday, September 20, 2014


Truth be told--I'm writing this post about 7 months late.  It's hard to conjure up the same feelings I had during that week before Sawyer started school, because they were so all over the place and intense I don't think I could even make sense of them then.  There is something really strange about sending your first child off to school.  I was so excited for him to start this new adventure.  And I was so scared for him at the same time!  I had really hoped that he would get a teacher who would understand him and who would be patient with him.  Sawyer is a ball of talkative energy and there's no denying that!  I knew he was going to need someone special.  Thankfully, looking back, I think he got just what he needed.  Ms. Oswald has been great for him.  He has been doing so much better, behaviorally, than I anticipated.  And he is doing great academically, as well.  I couldn't be happier about our experience this year.  

Sawyer and I got to go to Kindergarten orientation together, without the girls to distract us.  He was so excited to see the classroom and where he would be sitting.  Afterwards, we went on a lunch date with my friend Mandy and her son, Austin, who was also starting school.  It was a fun little day.

On the first day of school Sawyer got a Zucker Tüte, which is a tradition for German children when they start school.  A cone filled with goodies! 

I just think he looked so handsome!  My cute boy!

And there's a little Sawyer personality for ya!

Definitely a little timid that first morning.  

Sawyer and Austin after their first day.

These two were excited to be reunited!

A balloon party in the car after pick-up.

Two days later I finally decided to let Sawyer start riding the bus.  He couldn't wait to try it out!  We are lucky that our bus stop is just up the hill and around the corner from us. We live about 15 minutes from Base, which is where his school is, but the bus comes at about 7:21 and gets to the school by 8.  School lets out at 2:40, bus leaves at 2:50 and he gets home at 3:30.  Makes for a rather long bus ride, but it sure beats having to drive down there twice a day!  Sawyer struggled a bit the first few months with being too rowdy on the bus.  It's so hard for him to control it when everyone gets kinda loud on there.  But things have mellowed out a bit. Although I will say that is where most of the daily school drama happens.  Some things never change, I guess... ;)

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Girls Camp

I am the Young Women's Secretary in our ward and got asked to put together the Personal Progress Tent at camp this year.  The theme was Come Unto Christ--There's No Place Like Home.  It was so much fun tying the Wizard of Oz into everything that we did.  I was really worried about leaving my kids home with Nate all week, but he did a great job with them and everyone was alive when I returned :).  I didn't take a ton of pictures while I was there, but there are a few.  When the girls were arriving at camp, we had them get settled and then come and decorate a tin can.  Those cans tied in with our Individual Worth Value on 'Tin Man' day...we told the story of the Bucket Filler and encouraged the girls to fill each other's buckets with love all week long.  They were so great about writing sweet notes to everyone, and the cans looked so cute strung up around the canopy.  

The craft ladies had the girls paint these yellow bricks, and we had a devotional the first night where each girl laid their brick down going up a hill to represent the yellow brick road.  At the top of the hill, they rotated through small presentations from the scarecrow, lion, and tin man.  Each character tied their story into a gospel principle.  It was wonderful!

I was so proud of my sign!

I was actually able to leave the campsite for a couple of hours one day and enjoy a beautiful hike in Garmisch with the girls!  How awesome that we got to go to Garmisch for girls camp!?!  (although the 5 hr drive wasn't ideal--nor the daily rain :( )

I think our tent may have been the only one that didn't get soaked that week.  Thanks to Dani Weller for setting it up right!!

These two ladies were in charge of crafts and we got to work together a lot in planning for camp and while at camp!  I was lucky to have them there with me!