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Settling in to our Bavarian Cottage this 4th of July

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Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!): Settling in to our Bavarian Cottage this 4th of July

Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!)

My goal here is to make your life easier, especially those who are in the unique situation of being a military spouse. Yes...I've been around...but in a good way...and hopefully can share those tips, tricks and shortcuts with you too. I've been on this military bus for over 40 years now. My goals in life are to have a well-run home, few money worries, well adjusted children, money socked away and whatever happiness I can scoop out of life.

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After life as an Army brat, being in the Army myself and marrying a soldier, I can honestly say I have a bucket full of life lessons I can share to help you make your everyday life easier and enlightening. Don't waste your time making unnecessary mistakes and benefit from others who have come before you on your journey through life.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Settling in to our Bavarian Cottage this 4th of July

Finally made it...two hours after we intented due to numerous detours around mountains and also a lake to get to our destination in Bavaria.  I think every Bavarian town in our direction was having a fest or parade as we tried to make our way down here.  After a full night's rest, we are enjoying the brilliant sunshine and getting used to the slight slant in the floor of our cottage.  It's funny how your brain tells you one thing, and your feet are acting like they are DRUNK!  But it is also funny how your brain compensates or overcompensates and makes your brain think right side up again in spite of what you are seeing.  I even stopped putting things on the window ledge in the kitchen, knowing that they will roll right off of there!

Coming back to Germany, the place of my birth...and the place we lived before moving to Belgium...I feel like I came home.  After our big Bavarian meal of schnitzels, dumplings, Schweinehaxen (pigs' knuckles) and veal cutlets with mushrooms in a creamy sauce, we think we all died and went somewhere otherwordly last night!  The food is that good!  It's even cheaper than eating out in Belgium, with hefty portions...but alas, we obviously can't do this every day, cause for a family of four, you're still going to pay about 65 euros for a meal
(gulp, about $95) and have to grow another stomach to accomodate the big loads going in!

Before we made it down here though, a wonderful friend of mine offered up her home to us in Stuttgart, to kind of break up the drive...it's about six hours driving comfortably and taking into account a few German staus (gridlock) on the autobahns, we made it the second day...boy, had I forgotten that little deal about driving in Germany...the staus!!!  Big tip here, if you are driving for a longer distance on any of the autobahns, please check the German school calendar for your region of Germany...it is almost impossible to get anywhere on the autobahn when those periods start and end, so be mindful of those dates...also the big German holidays too are listed on that site too (unfortunately, that's the only part in English right now).

Anyway, so we spent a day of being nostalgic and driving by and checking out all our old haunts in Stuttgart.  As we walked into the building where I used to work, my younger son said, "yep, it smells the same".  The commissary on Patch looks exactly the same...a bit rundown as always...the big talked about foodcourt on Patch is still non-existent, although they say it is planned to open in July (isn't that...now?) after many construction delays.  Over on Panzer, we noticed that the foodcourt there has been spiffed up a bit, and in addition to Charley's Steakhouse, Popeye's, Anthony's Pizza and Sehne Bakery, they have added a Burger King.  Most of the small mall shops (there are only a handful) are still the same, although it looks like there is some kind of t-shirt or clothing shop that wasn't there before at the PX entrance.  The PX has revamped its image a bit, and I love that they expanded the electronics and book sections, although the clothes still look like the same tired old fashion they had before....we'll take the change in small bites though, right?

So, not much else on the agenda at the moment.  We'll do a little sightseeing but mostly relaxing and enjoying the mountain air...maybe do some hiking...one of the two gorges in the area, we have not ever hiked.  The kids are glad we brought the cat, and I can already see where he has picked out his spot, right by the window where he can see that bird's nest and the fountain out back.  He seems to have no problems with the lean at all.

I just saw the new banner for my blog re-design and am so happy with it!  I did tell the designer (okay, so she is my stepmom, but she does do this professionally) to flesh out my cartoon character a bit, cause right now, if I were to turn sideways, I would disappear.  I am NOT that skinny, and I need to have some reality going on here!  If any of you have ever migrated a blog from blogger to a wordpress platform and a new site, I would love to hear what your biggest trip up was..and NO, not to laugh at you but to LEARN from you! I am a bit worried when it will come to migrating the old posts...isn't it funny how attached we get to stuff that isn't even real?!!

As I sit here thinking about the 4th of July and what it means, I am a bit sad...I read an article yesterday about this lady.  And it made me sad.....although she seems to have a great support network, no one knows the outright terror and worry that she goes through on a daily basis.  Sometimes the fear of the unknown can be worse than any known fear.  Haven't you noticed that before?...so she will sit...and wait....and keep herself busy, cause that is what you do so you don't dwell on things.  If you are currently going through a deployment and need some encouragement, please make sure you read this.

I know my military readers will think about their loved ones in harm's way this 4th of July, just because their communities are so deeply immersed in the thick of this deployment stuff.  If you are civilian, I appreciate you coming by this blog and hopefully others and thinking of a deeper meaning of today too.  I am thinking too of all the friends we currently have in harm's way and will pray for their safety today and also pray today that they get a good taste of Americana....whether it is an American flag gently flying in the breeze...a slew of sparklers being lit tonight and reminding them of their childhood back in the USA...or perhaps a hearty slice of American apple pie with ice cream.  I don't know...I don't know what they will all do downrange today, but I will be thinking of them more than myself today...I'm going to make a point of it...and will send some positive email downrange to let them know I am thinking of them on this special day.  If you've got the time, please do the same.  Yes, it's great to celebrate with family and friends, and I personally have some awesome 4th of July BBQ and fun memories, but let's remember why we are even able to freely celebrate as we do.

Well, let me get going.  I thought I'd run to the bakery down the street to give everyone a choice of fresh rolls and pastries this morning.  Mind you, this will not happen every morning...although many German families do their bakery shopping EVERY morning...this family does not (again, thinking of the money and weight factors).....and then we'll see what else the day will bring.  What will you be doing today?

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I didn't know you were on FaceBook! You'll have to share where you hiked. We never know where to start. Thanks so much for your blog! It has made our transition to Germany so much easier!

July 7, 2011 at 9:39 AM  

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