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We Moved to Italy Today

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

We went quietly. I'm not very good at saying goodbye. I prefer to not do it. So I didn't. I feel like maybe I should feel bad about that but I don't. I was and am not feeling so good physically and crying and sad emotions make me feel worse. Remember when I told you about my neighborhood? Well, it's not easy to say goodbye to.

I told Ian that this is what I wanted before we left. This picture. 
I lost it last night when we said "see you later" to the Wriggs. Then I lost it again today when we were driving to post and Sadie started crying. Omg. No one wants their kids to cry especially when it's over moving.

It's weird to even write those words "we moved to Italy". Who says that? Saying "we are moving to Germany" was strange but now we are telling people we are FROM Germany. Eeee. So fun.

We made it to our hotel and my life is so good. Because we have A/C. I mean, legit central A/C. I haven't been this happy since... well, I can't say.

There isn't much else to report.

Today is the next day. We went to the mall next door (do you remember those my Germany friends?). David quickly made friends with the people at the buffet we went to because they, and he speak mandarin.

We didn't make it through the whole mall because it is so big! The kids were itching to go swimming so we went to the most Wal-Mart-like store I've seen since Tesco in the UK. I mean things were organized by category and not just randomly placed next to each other (I'm talking to you Kaufland). It was pretty lovely. We walked away with swimming items and a new cooler to take with us this weekend when we head to the beach that's close to us. Omg. Do you hate me?

Maybe you shouldn't hate me too much because the WiFi is lacking here. Haha! First world problems am I right? It's also a very open network and we can't use our Unblock-Us. This is very sad because I'm missing Big Brother and David and I have not yet been able to watch The Season Finale of that show. You know which one I'm talking about.

Once again, I'd like to extend an invitation to come visit us. The door to our not-yet-known house is open. We might not have great WiFi but we WILL have Italian food. Are you packing your bags???

My Best Friends are Doctors and Nurses. Are yours?

Friday, June 24, 2016
I don't always go to the hospital, but when I do it's usually for kidney stones. Sometimes it's for an occasional broken ankle leg, or maybe one of my kids has a piece of colored pencil stuck under her nail. Regardless, my best friends are the ones in the urology department at the Weiden Klinikum. 

My friends
As I sat in my wheelchair in the hallway waiting for my ultrasound, I looked up at the wall where the pictures of the staff are and I'm pretty sure I have met or talked to 90 percent of them. 

Julia is secretly my favorite. She also said I was her favorite patient. So there's that. I guess that means we are best friends. 

Werner put in my stent this time. He's super funny. When he was administering the anesthesia (that didn't work so well) he kept telling me to "Look at the Prince" which was him. lol. We're kind of in a fight though, because I feel like I was awake the whole time. Although looking back, I probably wasn't. I just remember waking up and crying and begging them to make the pain go away. They told me it would be a 20 minute procedure but it ended up being an hour and a half. I don't remember what happened after that. I'm gonna ask. 

What I'm really sad about is the newer doctor whose name I can't remember. He is so nice! I'm gonna go see if I can find his name on one of the pieces of many paper I have from the hospital. 

Jurgen did my x-ray with contrast that last time. He is also super funny and told me about a great place to go with my kids. 

Me and the Chief (one of them, there are two) are also not bff's. He doesn't spend enough time on our relationship. He only comes to see me in the mornings on check-out days. I don't think he appreciates our friendship. It's definitely a one way thing. 

My closest friends are all of the ones that do my in-house pants-down urine samples. Tanja is one. I can't remember the name of the one with the pretty eyelashes. (She uses a serum for them that costs 80 euros. It lasts for 3 months though.) They are the truest of friends. Because they've seen all of me. Literally. 

So as I sit here recovering from my 4 mm stone that tried to pass and got stuck 2 days ago and the one that is still in my kidney, I'm reminiscing about all of the good memories I have with my friends. I'm gonna miss them!  


Tuesday, June 14, 2016
I don't remember where I put the hammer I borrowed from Self Help. I also don't know how we accrued $120 in library fees. These things are all part of the experience that is out-processing. Yesterday David attended a levy brief signifying the beginning of the End.
When I got this hammer I thought they gave me a broken one, turns out it's just awesome design. Photo cred (worth a read) 

The pre-inspector guy came and judged me for my walls and my messy house. Well, I don't really know if he did. I explained to my friends that he was very clearly German meaning he was to the point, and not overly-friendly but also not rude. It's this very weird mix of emotion. He gave me a sweet deal, only charging me $150 to paint our whole house! That means I don't have to paint the teal wall, or the greige wall, or the purple wall or the red wall NOR do I have to paint over the grimy handprints/smudges that line the hand-level of the various children in my house. Fine, there's some at my level too okay? Because no hand-rail and a previous broken ankle leg make me more cautious. I also don't have to fill in the gaping holes caused by attempts to drill into the cement that are some of the walls here.
The Purple Wall

The Red Wall
Panorama of my living room In the Beginning

The Teal Wall

The inspector pulled out his black light and shined it on the kids carpets which we will obviously have to work on because I have "artistic" kids who like paint and other various liquids that should probably not be used for potion-making.

What I'm having trouble with is selling my stuff. I've given SO much away but there are a few things I really feel like others might enjoy. Apparently they WANT to enjoy them but they don't want to put forth the effort of obtaining them. Now I totally understand why people rant about the people that don't follow through. I'm about to go all Bad Grammar Police on them.

I screenshot your bad grammar/spelling. Only if it's really bad. 

Although it's nearing the end, I really am excited for what's to come. Will you come visit me?

I Live in The Hood but I'm Moving to Another

Friday, June 10, 2016
I'm serious when I say this is the best neighborhood I've ever lived in. That might offend some of you because I may have been your neighbor in a previous era of my time on earth. However, where I live now has established itself in the most coveted spot of Best Neighborhood In My Life.

The view from 200 ft above our neighborhood. Photo cred: Derik D. 
David and I have a conversation every so often about how he likes the country but could be happy in the city but he doesn't usually like "cookie cutter houses" and suburban neighborhoods. However, I think living on name removed because OPSEC has changed his views although I won't speak for him. I on the other hand, LOVE the idea of neighborhoods just like ours where everyone knows everyone and there's no drama. Who cares that our houses are pretty much exactly the same? Who cares that The Other Side has a front AND backyard (rude!)?

I mentioned to a couple of friends recently that I really believe in that whole "village" idea. Where we all help each other out and that's kind of what we have here. There's usually someone every day who needs to run to the store, or finish charting, or make dinner, or go to the bathroom alone and we all pitch in to watch the kiddos while she (or he) goes and does that. It's so lovely.

What I'm feeling extra sad about is this chunk of happiness time is dwindling for me. I know that's a terrible way of looking at it (half empty much?) but I can't help but be super depressed about it. It comes up in daily conversation for me and my frens here on name removed Strasse.

I'm really starting to feel it because The Originals (sorry newbies) have slowly started (or have already gone) to PCS. I was actually supposed to be one of the final 4 to leave. That's changing*.

I'm going to miss community potlucks and egg hunts and Halloween parties. I'm going to miss you-cook-tonight-and-I'll-cook-tomorrow nights. I'll especially miss sitting outside on the green chairs (or the brown ones if I can convince someone to bring them over) and listening to Eric or Chris play the Uke (am I trendy enough to shorten that?). I'll miss those warm summer nights spent outside until 1 a.m. when it's finallllllly cool enough to go inside and open the windows again. I'll miss Thirsty Thursday's in my backyard drinking Diet Beverage with whoever is out that evening.  I'll miss baby showers, birthday and welcome/goodbye parties. I'll miss toys and chalk everywhere on the street. I'll miss sending my kids to their best friends houses which happen to be a few yards away in any direction. I'll miss my own best friends being a few yards away.  I may even miss those annoying as hell 2 a.m. doughnut-doers in the Edeka parking lot. Nah, I won't miss them.

I meant for this to be a funnier post but it kind of got serious and sentimental. I tell you, it's the nature of this Army life. Because it got all emotional, I'm feeling like I need to put together a Senior Slideshow like we had when we graduated. I think I might do it. lol. I'll add some good music and it will make everyone, or maybe just me, cry. Maybe the Sophomores and Juniors should do it for us? Yeah. I'll make the President tell them to do it. We totally have one of those even though she kind of refuses to do her job. Who cares that she was elected unofficially? lol.

I love every single one of you! Even the ones who have already gone. I'm talking to you Christina, Yvonne, Tasha, Krysta and Stacey and your spouses/kids.

*Stay tuned. I'm not going public till it's official. Edit: It's become official. But if you don't know where we are going you aren't a true friend or you don't read my blog enough. jk.

Now some pictures:

Even though Lauren left a long time ago, Nevie STILL talks about her almost every day! 

The Less Glamorous Days

Wednesday, June 8, 2016
Today was a day!

Started out with our 110 Volt power out which means my fan was off which means we all woke up to the sound of the trash people coming by at whatever time that was. It felt early because of my late bedtime.

Then I never stopped sweating. It's humid and not terribly hot but HUMIDITY is the worst. David has always enjoyed the humidity stating, "It feels like I'm wrapped in a warm blanket" or something equally as gross. Like who wants to feel that way on a day when it's anything warmer than 60 degrees Farenheit?

I spent some time posting pictures of my stuff for sale which I'm now going to try and pawn off on you once I can get my album together. Or website. Or Etsy shop or Spotify shop. Wait, I think that's a song thing.... Shopify. That's it.

I organized and threw away and donated and I'm so excited.

I made the kids chicken salad with crackers and I think they thought I was Supermom. Don't tell them it was just canned chicken and mayo and salt and pepper. lol.

Our internet is out because of that crazy huge storm we had on Sunday morning. Apparently it fried a bunch of our neighbors water heaters and things...Apple TV's, modems, phone chargers, etc. Luckily we've just been blessed with the internet being off. *insert crying laughing emoji*

Every single day of my life I feel like I'm shoveling while it's still snowing with the mess in my house. I've come to realize (this is what I'm telling myself anyway) that the most lived in area of our house is actually really small so any sort of out-of-place thing seems like a big deal. Hence my heightened desire for minimalism. Also, have you seen my kitchen? Well I'm about to show you.

We're getting to the end of the day in my post about my less glamorous life and I want to show you

a) How small my dum kitchen is
b) What it looks like after my sweet husband and kids make dinner (and muffins!)

Hashtag reallife

Not a Travel Blogger: The Rhine with Kids

Saturday, June 4, 2016

We were in Frankfurt for some things... mostly to eat Chipotle but also to get our visas. Who cares about that part though?  Since I have always wanted to go to the Rhine area we made a little detour on our way home from Chipotle I mean, getting our visas.

My friend Rick recommended a short trip from Bacharach to St. Goar and that's what we decided to do. Because Rick is cool.

We decided on a hotel in Bacharach also recommended by Rick. We are so glad we listened to his recommendation because otherwise we would have missed out on this:

This was the decoration? behind our bed. Like it was the headboard. There were several other characters spread throughout the room and the hotel.

For real though, this place was awesome. We called ahead and were totally welcomed with open arms. We arrived and were quickly ushered into the family apartment. It was perfectly big enough for us. The beds weren't bad and I think my favorite part was the noise from the trains and the rain.

In the morning I went upstairs to pay and before I could get a word in, the super nice lady took us to our table (set for 5) and showed us the breakfast. She made the kids hot chocolate and brought us an extra.It was so nice! The owner came out to say hi as well. It was really amazing. Although it was not a new or modern hotel by any means, it was everything that is important to us! Kid-friendly, it had views (our room didn't but that's okay) and it was freaking close to everything. AND the staff were so so so nice.

Speaking of close... we woke up the next day and walked across the street to the Bacharach K-D ferry ramp and hopped on the Nostalgic Route to St. Goar. It was a short ride (perfect for my crazy kids) and so beautiful! On the boat there was a slide for the kiddos and plenty of space to roam  around. The ride was only 45 minutes-ish and so stunning. I don't know if it's because I have waited so long to see it or what, but it was pretty magical. The weather was good, the kids behaved, and the views were so unbelievable.

And now I'm pretty much done talking. Oh wait! We met some really friendly people from Park City! I really wish we would have exchanged contact information. They were so nice! I kind of feel like posting one of those missed connection posts on Craigslist. Maybe they'll read my blog and we'll become best friends. I think they were there with their daughter. He was a Marine and she was just really nice.

Now for the pictures! The cell phone ones. Because let's be honest, who has space for a fancy camera when they have 3 kids, a backpack, 3 coats to hold, and a purse that isn't big enough.

Oh, I have to tell you something. The night before this, Sadie and David and Nevie walked down here and found this guy, the swan (They swear it's the same one). Nevie was terrified. Sadie loved him. So we brought bread on our day trip to hopefully find him again and we did! This time though, he nipped Sadie's finger. I'm pretty sure she doesn't like him anymore. lol. 

That's all for now! Stay tuned for more not travel blogging! Which castle have you seen or do you want to see? 

Lessons in Spelling and Grammar: They're, Their, There

Thursday, June 2, 2016
Here's a good one! I haven't covered this yet but it has come up quite a bit lately. So for informational purposes, I borrowed a graphic from someone way smarter than me and made this:

Original Photo Cred
Do you remember those clever Tide commercials? Obviously they did a great job with these because I remember them 8 years later.

This makes me lol so much especially when the stain gets louder.

Anyway, this is what bad spelling and grammar looks and sounds like to me. Maybe you are the smartest person in the world but when you spell weirdly this commercial immediately comes to mind. lol. In real life though, I generally have talking stains every day!

 #grammarpolice at your service.