Putting the kids to work! Helping our church tear down after service.
Daddy date… Fanta and Spaghetti!
Daddy date… Fanta and Schnitzel!
Everyone loves riding bikes!
Our son, the future street musician.
Bike ride on a sunny fall afternoon.

Villers la Ville Abbey

Traveling does have its perks. One of the places I was able to see a few days ago on a work trip is Villers Abbey. I have visited numerous times over the years and it is apparent that they are actively working on restoring large portions of the ruins. Its always been a thoughtful place for me, a place to walk in silence, to observe, to think and consider.








Wandern ist des Müllers Lust… 

One of the boys’ classes was going on a school outing to an old castle 30 minutes drive south of Erfurt. Papa B was going to be here, too, so we made a Man-Day. A few days before the preparations went into full swing: we bought manly snacks and packed them in our manly backpacks. The email from the organizers said that though you could drive there, some would meet at a bus stop in a nearby village and hike to the castle. Well, that sounded manly, so that’s what we were going to do.

The day arrived, beautiful and sunny. We got everything ready, filled our water bottles and got our hiking shoes on, and set out for the village. We got there, just in time. After the bus came and went on which the other hikers were supposed to come, and no one got off, we knew that we’d missed something.

Well, there was nothing to do but to start hiking.

We saw many wonderful things… 


… including brilliant fields of raps


… deer stands


(… and cows, many dandelions which got decapitated, sheep/goats, hippies, but sadly dad didn’t think of taking pictures of those)

… and finally, the castle itself (where the hippies live). We got there about 40 minutes too late. I guess dad had done the manly thing and wasn’t detailed enough in his planning.


And where were the others? They either drove all the way to the castle or started from a nearer village. We ended up walking a total of 10 KM there and back! That’s pretty good. Its good we had our manly snacks along, otherwise we would’ve run out of fuel for the way back.

I was so proud of my boys!

We got Pigs and Ducks in the house!

Fasching are the holidays leading up to Ash Wednesday here in Germany, and nearly everyone celebrates it. Everyone dresses up and has a good time, including the Kindergarten where the boys attend. In the weeks leading up to it, Kristen started prepping costumes for the boys. Apparently the classes had a play and a program and need specific costumes. M was to be a wild boar, and J a duck. What?! Kristen worked her genius. I took some time off and together with Kristen we showed up on the appointed morning. Turns out, we were the only parents there! Nonetheless, we enjoyed it, and the boys loved it, too. They performed just for us!

E is dressed up as a blue berry for Fasching.
E is dressed up as a blue berry for Fasching.
M with a classmate
M with a classmate
She was ready to participate.
She was ready to participate.
In full costume… notice the snout, the tail, and the brown fuzzy fur.
In full costume… notice the snout, the tail, and the brown fuzzy fur.
J is doing the duck-waddle for his part in the play
J is doing the duck-waddle for his part in the play