Saturday, December 26, 2009

Spoiled little dog

I blame Phillip for this. Today he thought that the cement on the patio was too cold for Clara to lay outside, thus he moved her bed out there. She loved it, and I'm sure will expect it from now on.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas!! We hope that you all had a wonderful day! We had a great time here!

A quick picture before all the presents were opened. Phillip and Clara in front of our tree.

Clara inspecting her presents. She did pretty good this year!

Phillip got Rock Band for our Wii as one of his presents. He's been asking for it for a while now, so he was pretty excited! I got some great presents too, a new purse, cookbook, and a Garmin 305 for running, just to name a few. And we love our new K-state bottle opener from Amanda and B.J, it will definitely get a lot of use!!

Our Christmas dinner next to our tree!! Turkey and all the fixings, plus wine from my trip to Italy! Soooo good!!

And Clara got a Christmas dinner too!

We also made our phone calls home and caught up with family! One discussion I had with my dad was what are my essential Christmas movies, thus the list, in no particular order.

1. How the Grinch stole Christmas
2. A Charlie Brown Christmas
3. A Christmas Story
4. Elf

It's just not christmas unless I get to see all of them! Watched #2 and 3 today! So, all and all a great day!! Now I'm sitting here while Phillip plays Rock Band, he might put it down eventually.

Merry Christmas!!!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas markets come to an end :(

Tonight we took the Mitchells to the Christmas Market in Trier. Tomorrow is the last day and they hadn't been to one yet, so we wanted to make sure they got to experience at least one. They had a really great time!!

Here is a sunset from the other night that Phillip got a picture of. We've gotten snow each day for the last 3 days, so we've pretty much been stuck at home the whole time. This picture is from the first day where the snow was still pretty light. It's really pretty, but frustrating! We had planned to go to a couple Christmas markets this weekend, but with the snow we didn't get to make it out. Oh well, I guess we have more to look forward to next year.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

This is the life...

Clara is spending her snow day on the couch, on top of the comforter,
sunning herself

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

German Music

One thing that I have been very surprised by is the music Germans listen to, it's almost all American music, but not in German which would make sense, it's in English!! It's so funny!! It is even more noticeable now because they are listening to Christmas music, and you are enjoying yourself and start singing along, and then you realize that you are in Germany but the song is no different than from the states!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Trimming our Tree

We selected our Christmas tree this weekend!! We bought it from a little German man selling them down the street from us. I like this picture because I just love seeing cars driving around with trees on their roofs this time of the year! German's usually don't buy and decorate their tree until the night before Christmas, but they are now starting to break with tradition and decorate more like Americans.

Unfortunately, we picked out our tree when it was a little dark and we didn't notice how spacey it was on the bottom. We figured we would give it overnight to fluff out, and if it didn't fill in enough we would take some off the bottom.

Getting into the holiday spirit by making our own Gluhwein!! Really good!!

Our Gluhwein mugs we have collected so far from the Christmas markets! It's ok if you keep them because when you get your first glass you pay a 2E deposit, so essentially we bought them.

The Christmas puppy!! We decided to cut off about a foot and a half so that the tree would look fuller!

All done!!!

And all tuckered out! They slept like this for an hour this afternoon! Clara just loves it and only does this with Phillip, not me!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Message

Back in September we recorded a hometown holiday greeting to be sent back to the states!! We've heard from many people that they have either seen it on tv or heard it on the radio! However, for those who may not have, below is the website where you can go and watch the video. Just scroll down the page and on the right side there are about 4 entries for 1st Lt. Phillip Roth. All of them are links to video. They had us do a separate spot for each area of the state it was being sent. Hope you enjoy!!


It took us 2 evenings of wrapping and packing, but it's December 11 and all of our Christmas presents have been placed into boxes and are on their way to the states! Our Christmas cards have also been completed and are also in the mail! What a relief to know that it's all done!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

You know you have a problem when.... daydream about meat.

Not just any meat.

Red meat.

Steaks, ribs, prime rib, etc.

I was doing good and not missing it too much until my dad said as a Christmas present he had checked to see if Omaha steaks ships overseas. Sadly they do not. :( We have the ability to get red meat here at the commissary, but its terrible so we buy buffalo meat instead, tastes better and is healthier, but its not the same and now I am missing my Kansas beef more than ever!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Trier Christmas Market

This afternoon we checked out the Trier Christmas Market. It was quite a bit larger than the market in Bernkastel, and a lot busier. We had a lot of fun though, tried some more Gluhwein, and meandered our way through the stalls. However we didn't stay too long as it started raining pretty good. The market was really cute though, so we will definitely have to go back again!

Enjoying some Gluhwein in front of the huge candle windmill.

Mmmmm....sharing a Bratwurst

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Bernkastel-Kues Christmas Market

Today we went to our first German Christmas Market in Bernkastel-Kues. It was really nice and very pretty!! We even happened to be there when the swimmers came down the Mosel, caring torches, lighting the way for St. Nicolas. We had a great time, bought some Christmas ornaments, and made sure to try the Gluhwein. I can't wait to visit more!!

The house that they made to look like an Advent Calendar. So cute!

Phillip in front of the Advent Calendar house.

A band playing Christmas music in the marketplatz.

Gluhwein, YUM!!

Swimmers in the Mosel. They are the little bright lights in the river. There were 100 of them, so this picture doesn't really do them justice. Phillip and I couldn't stop laughing because this is something we could see his family coming up with. You know it was a group of guys who were drunk who thought, hey, lets put on some wet suits, flippers, and life jackets and float down the Mosel carrying torches, that sounds like fun! HAHA!!

Friday, December 4, 2009


Sorry for the blogging lull. Things have been a little busy here lately. So, an update...

1. Celebrated a Happy Thanksgiving!! Our friends in Phillip's office invited us over Thanksgiving day for a wonderful meal. We had a really nice time and ate our weight in ham, fried chicken, potatoes, and plenty of pie. Friday after Thanksgiving we had Thanksgiving #2 with our college friends, Drew and Rhiannon, over at Ramstein. This time we ate our weight in turkey, corny corn, sweet potatoes, and more pie. Sunday, restarted P90X.

2. Was a cookie taster for our friend Andi. Andi has decided that she will be cooking every cookie in the Martha Stewart Cookie Cookbook. However, Andi is allergic to wheat, so she cannot do any of the cookie tasting herself. She thus has a team of regular cookie tasters, but each week she picks a guest cookie taster, and this just happened to be our week. Boy were we excited to get a box of cookies from the states!!! You should definitely check out her blog, at least for the latest entry about yours truly!!

3. Got sick. Yep, I knew it was only a matter of time before those little mongrels gave me their germs. Stopped P90X, will have to restart on Sunday, ugh.

4. Watched the base Christmas tree lighting. This was basically by mistake because I got stuck at the BX when they blocked off traffic, so I just happened to be there at the time. It was sadly a little lame, as the tree only had 1 messily string of lights, but oh well. The base has also put up lighted stars on all the street lights, which remind me a lot of the big old Christmas lights from Liberal, so that is really nice!

5. Made it to the weekend!! This weekend we are headed out to our first German Christmas markets!! We are headed to Bernkastel and Trier, so excited!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Do you see what I see?

Yep, little puppy foot prints. Why do I care?

Because of where we keep the ottoman. Our little ornery puppy has become quite the little counter cruiser! I know that this happens daily, because each day I rub off the little foot prints, and each day they appear again.

Of course, she believes she is innocent. Just look at her, you just know she is thinking, "I did nothing, I am perfect, look at me, I have such nice manners I even cross my legs." Orneriness!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


One very annoying thing about how much it rains here is that my pants always end up wet!! Mainly because I am too short and the backs of my pants always meet the ground, thus the water loves to run up them. And before you know it your pants are soaked from the knees down, and then your socks end up soaked, and then you have to change pants and socks, which only makes for even more laundry for me to do in my itty bitty German washing machine. And the fact that Clara gets 2-3 walks a day translates to 2-3 pairs of pants and socks. And yes, I have been trying to re-wear things, but this means that I am changing pants now 6 times a day!!

So, today I decided to order my first pair of Wellies!! J.crew makes some really cute ones, but right now they are between styles. I thus found these ones from j.crew on Ebay for the bargain price of $20. The listing said they were new, but I guess I'll find out. Green with little polar bears, perfect! I'm pretty excited if you can't tell! Can't wait for them to get here!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Bazaar fun

This weekend the base had a Holiday Bazaar. It was a lot of fun! We got some great stuff for ourselves and also some Christmas presents for others! Cheese from France and Holland, cookies and vanilla liquor from Germany, and some other great things that I can't talk about since it might show up as your Christmas present!!

One thing Phillip and I each got for ourselves were some alpaca scarves from Peru. They are pretty neat because you can make the scarf work as both a scarf and hat! Hard to explain here, but it works, and it is very warm and super soft!!

Well, since Phillip got a new scarf, guess who got his old one? Here are my little cuties, all ready for Clara's nighttime walk!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Rome Day 3, The Final Installment

We decided early in our trip that our last day in Rome, a Wednesday, would be spent at the Vatican. The main reason being that every Wednesday morning the Pope gives his weekly address and blesses the crowd. While I'm not Catholic, Phillip is, and I've been with him to church numerous times, so I felt that I could actually appreciate the service. It really was a very neat experience!

The Pope in his Pope Mobile!! I LOVE IT!!! I couldn't believe how close we got to him!

The Pope reading his address. He read the same address in about 7 different languages. I definitely at least recognized Latin, Italian, English, Spanish, French, and German. The entire address lasted an hour and a half and he ended it by singing the Lord's Prayer in Latin and blessing the crowd.

We then decided to go have some lunch and let the crowds clear before we tackled the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter's Basilica. I have many pictures from the Vatican Museums, but since I've already posted a lot of pictures on this post, you can see them on facebook. Unfortunately they did not allow any pictures of the Sistine Chapel. The Museums were very nice, but very overwhelming! There was just so much to see! The Sistine Chapel was beautiful, but not quite what I expected. It is very small. There were also about 200 people crammed into the room, with ushers constantly shushing people, so it was hard just to stand there and appreciate it. I really wanted to just lay on the floor and stare at the ceiling, but you were lucky to find a comfortable place to stand. The frescoes were incredible though!!! I actually appreciated Michelangelo's Last Judgement fresco the most, which covers the entire front wall of the chapel. The ceiling is beautiful too, which is where his most famous Creation fresco lies. The Sistine Chapel was very overwhelming too because every single inch of the walls and ceilings are painted, and I mean every inch!!

After finishing with the Vatican Museums (we only saw about 2 out of the 4 museums, and we were running out of time), we headed over to St. Peter's Basilica. It was incredible! So huge, and just breathtaking.

The Chapel is built upon the original burial place of St. Peter the apostle, considered the First Pope of the Catholic church.

St. Peter's Tomb down below.

Michelangelo's La Pieta. Beautiful!

And thus this ends our trip to Rome!!! That evening we took the train back to Pisa and flew back to Germany the next day. Pisa's airport was cheaper than Rome's, so that's why we went back. We had a fantastic time on our trip! We were really only there for about 4 days, but we saw so much! And of course, we had plenty of gelato!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Rome Day 2

On our second day of Rome we visited lots more historic sights, but with more of a relaxed pace. Our day started off a little slow as we were enjoying our wonderful hotel room and gigantic bathroom, very uncommon in Europe! But after a nice relaxing morning and long shower we headed out for another fun filled day!

Our first stop, the Pantheon. Just like many of the other sights in Rome, you are walking along between modern buildings and all of the sudden this ancient structure is in front of you. I was astonished at how huge it is! The pantheon was built as a temple to the gods, but Christians rededicated it as a church in the 7th century. It also contains crypts of the first 2 Kings of Italy and the artist Raphael. Almost two thousand years after it was built, the Pantheon's dome is still the world's largest unreinforced concrete dome.

The beautiful ceiling. Completely open, so the inside is always exposed to the weather. The hole in the ceiling is 142 feet in diameter.

After the Pantheon we headed over to Piazza Navona, built in the first century A.D it is one of the most famous squares in Rome. It was once used as an open stadium for games. Now it is a popular attraction of tourists and artists. Callie and I each found some beautiful, and inexpensive, watercolor paintings for souvenirs.

We then headed over to the Trevi Fountain to take more pictures and to toss in a coin. We were able to get more pictures, but it was difficult to enjoy as the crowds were so big and vendors kept coming up to us trying to sell us stuff. Very annoying. But it was nice to see the fountain in daylight, and we weren't there for long anyways.

Tossing a coin in over my shoulder for good luck. Not sure I tossed it over the correct shoulder, but it must have been lucky because I got hired on for a new job the day after we got back!

Our last stop for the day was the Spanish Steps. We were glad we made it our last stop for the day because it was further away from the other sights and was very lovely in the evening light. Located near the high end shopping district, we also took some time to visit some of the stores, and I even found some Italian leather gloves to bring home to Phillip! (I got myself a pair too!)