Sunday, July 31, 2011

fun stuff

I was looking for a wardrobe for coats on eBay, and I found this wooden stool. I won the bid for 1 Euro. It's hand carved, from Spain. Cool!

We got the keys!

We met the owners today. They were really sad about losing their house. I don't blame them for that. But they couldn't afford it after their kids moved out. They moved to an apartment. That's very sad! But they were very nice and gave us the keys. The bank is still doing paper work. It's still their house for at least one week. We can start to paint, and work on the boys rooms. I'm very excited about that! Juergen and I have a babysitter tonight. We may just get a pizza and eat it in our house! The grass has not been cut all summer long. It is covered with dandelions. I feel like that is a real blessing from God! A good friend of mine once had a word from God that we would be like dandelions...influence that would spread out wide! Most people would hate a garden full of dandelions, but I feel like God was smiling on me today!

If you want to help us paint this week, let me know.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Philip's room

I bought these movie seats (4 seats) on e Bay. Juergen picked them up today. He wasn't too excited about them but the kids love them! I plan to put them in Philip's room. Philip will have a very cool wallpaper that's graffiti style. He also gets to do a little graffiti on his own wall (no place else)!

Juergen took Thomas to summer camp. I wanted to go too but Jessica is sick. She seems to have a bad cold. Poor baby! So I didn't get to see Nicole. But I'm sure she and Thomas will both have a really great week!

Friday, July 29, 2011

what is going on

We get the key to the basement this weekend. The handworkers begin to do the boy's bedrooms on Monday. The owners bank failed to do some important paper work. We have to wait until all the paper work is finished, then we get the house keys. I don't know how long that will take. I'm packing. Our movers are coming Aug 22. I hope we have everything ready by then. We may need to push the move back a few weeks? We may show our house at least once to someone who is interested in buying it (the Leimen house). Today I'm just packing Thomas for camp. I’m pretty happy because Juergen has his last work day for 2 weeks. He and Philip will be working on the new house, God willing on Monday. One of our goals for the year was to teach our boys how to work. So Juergen works with Philip this week while Thomas is in camp. Then He will work with Thomas while Philip goes to camp. Sarah may also be able to attend the Sola kids camp. Philip’s friends are not able to attend. We have 3 extra spots paid for. So maybe Sarah can go, and we will find 2 more campers. I’m doing my best not to think about the sale of our Leimen house. I’m trying hard to just do what ever I need to do for the move. I bought paint on sale yesterday. Today I packed my books. I have so much to do, I am really trying not to waste my sleep worrying about our house not selling. God will give us wisdom.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

camp news

We wanted to get going early today. I gave my keys to Nicole so she could load all her camp stuff in the car. She got it all loaded, and everyone was ready to go. I closed the front door, and then found out Nicole had left my keys in the house. Nicole called Juergen and he came 15 minutes later to let us in the house!
Then we went to the paint sale. We bought 250 Euros worth of paint (saved 200 Euro). Then we dropped Nicole off at the Sola camp. It starts on Saturday but she is part of the staff. She will help them set things up for the next few days. I got a phone call from Philip's best friends mom. He and his brother and sister were going to the kids camp, but now they are going somewhere else. So we have 3 extra camping spots for kids Aug 7- 14. I'm going to ask them if Sarah can go. She is 6 months too young, but her brother and Big sister will be there. I'm sorry Philip's friends will not be going, but I'm glad they will go on vacation. If you know a kid ages 9-13 that wants to go to camp Aug 7-14 then let me know.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

paint is on sale

Today the kids had their last day of school. The report cards were all pretty good. Everyone got a B average. Tomorrow I'll take them to Toys R Us for a small reward. It was a sad day for Jessica. Saying goodbye is never easy. I cried when I gave small gifts to the bus drivers that pick Sarah and Jessica up. It hit me...we really are moving!

I take the kids to "Praktiker" tomorrow morning. They have a crazy one day paint sale. We already bought the white paint we will use for the moldings and ceilings. We got that half price last month. So now we get the colored paints half price too. The paper work never got sent from the owners bank. The bank really blew it! So we will not be getting the keys on Monday. I'm not sure when we can start to paint. But the owners will give us the basement keys (maybe even on Saturday). We can start work on the boys rooms "as planned". So I'm ok with this. We get to start the work, and we don't pay interest on 2 houses for at least a few days more. We got an inquiry about our house. Perhaps we will show it this weekend? I'm going to try to not expect too much. I'm doing pretty good not worrying...I want to keep it that way.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Matthew 6:25-34 Do not worry!

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

These are the words of Jesus. The thing that really upsets me the most is my own worry! I can not control the sale of our house. I hear only bad news from many people about the market right now. It is like being one of the spies that went to check out the promise land. Many voices saying "there are giants in the land"! But my heart feels like melting from fear! And I do not want to have such a weak faith. I really feel like we made the right choice in moving. I look forward to our new house. And I need to just put all my thoughts on today. To worry about tomorrow is sin! OK there are giants in the My God can move a mountain, he is mighty to God's mighty to save! So my mom told me to not think about the sale of our house for at least one week. Good advise! And I think I need to give it at least 2 weeks...2 weeks rest! There really isn't anything I can do about it now, so I'm going to try to forget it for now. And when I start to fear, I'm going to try to remember what Jesus said. You can not add a day to your own not worry!

Just paint

I got Jessica's new bed in the mail today. I went to put it in the garage and knocked over a can of paint. What a mess! But as my brother says, "it's just paint"! I got a call from the director of the care center Jessica may go to this fall. She told me that they are now opening a new Autism center in Bruchsal. I don't know if Jess can go there instead? The idea of it makes me want to cry for joy. They wanted to open an autism center near Heidelberg. They couldn't manage to get the project off the ground. We are moving to Bad Schönborn, not knowing what will really be there for Jessica. But now a autism center is opening up this fall. Amazing!

The Bible

I finished the whole Bible. I'm starting it again. I wanted to read it 5 times this year. Now it looks like I may get through it 2 times. But that's still really good. And I really need it (desperatly)! I feel like my faith is zero! But faith comes by hearing the word.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A good day

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life
Proverbs 13:12

Philip had a very good birthday party today. We took 9 boys bowling for 2 hours. Afterwards they built Lego and watched a movie. I made spaghetti and also apple strudel. It all was really great! Amazing for a house filled with boys.
A family at our church asked Juergen about our house that's for sale. They said they were very interested. But sadly they called and said they don't want to live in Leimen. They live in the best neighborhood in Heidelberg, so I guess I can understand! Our house is a very good house, but it's not in the best neighborhood in Heidelberg. My heart is sad! But I need to "brush it off". It takes courage to sell a house. I don't really feel like I've got too much courage right now. But God gives grace to get us by each day. Today was very good. The kids have 3 more days of school. I should forget about what is ahead...and seek grace for today. Today I have more then enough. And God will provide everything we need, so I should just rest.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

To believe what you can not see

The Zugspitze, at 2,962 metres above sea level, is the highest peak in Germany. It lies south of the town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, and the border between Germany and Austria. About 10 years ago, Juergen and I took some friends to see the Zugspitze. We stayed in a beautiful Hotel right at the foot of this Mountain. But the valley was covered in clouds the entire weekend. We didn't see the mountain. It was there...the biggest mountain in Germany. We could stand on it, but we couldn't see it. Clouds are funny like that! I thought back then about God's provision. It could be on it's way...or even there. But sometimes we are afraid because of the clouds. And this is a word for me today. God is big, and his provision is great. Even if I can not see it, I can stand on it! What are we going to believe in? The Mountain or the clouds?

at the end of the day

OK, I've thought and I've worried. I've read and I've listened to the bad news from our neighbors saying we need to sell at an even lower price (we would already be loosing 11,000€ at the price we have it now). But at the end of the day I feel like God is telling me to wait. Wait and see the salvation of the Lord. I'm not going to be Sarah who could not have a baby, so she came up with plan B. Big mistake! It's really hard to know what to do right now. I certainly don't want to be foolish. But I've cleaned, lowered the price, thought about other paths (and maybe we will rent). But right now I feel like I should just relax and wait on God. So I've done all I can for one weekend! I'm going to rest. Philip has a birthday party tomorrow. It's not his real birthday, but we wanted to celebrate before the move. We are going bowling again. I'll make spaghetti and salad. I also have apple strudel with ice cream.

How to Turn Your Home or Condo Into a Vacation Rental

How to Turn Your Home or Condo Into a Vacation Rental
edits by:Tenantwiz, Maluniu, BR, Hockeyhamster (see all)

Determine if your Property is a suitable Vacation Rental - While there are many vacation rentals on the market today, it certainly helps if your property has unique features. It is important to determine whether or not your property is marketable and desirable. You should ask yourself the following questions: Is my property in a frequented geographic area? Is my property's location desirable (i.e. on the water, great views, or close to landmarks such as theme parks, etc.). Is my property up-to-date enough and have the amenities that many travelers are looking for such as high-speed internet, jacuzzi tubs, etc.

Prepare the Interior & Exterior of your Property for Rental - Once you've determined that your property is a suitable vacation rental, it's time to make sure that both the interior and exterior of your property are up to snuff for travelers. When people travel and rent vacation homes or condos, the general rule of thumb is to make sure that everything works, nothing is broken and that the property in its entirety is very presentable

Locate a Good House Keeping Service - If you've made the decision to rent your property as a vacation rental, it's a very good idea to locate a good house cleaning service or maid that can clean the property for you once your guests depart. Of course, you could do this on your own, however, if your bookings begin to rise in frequency, most owners tend to want to outsource the cleaning of their property.

Create a System for Providing a Key or Entry Instructions to Guests - If you are going to rent your property as a vacation rental, you will need to somehow provide a key to your guests. Most property owners generally tend to setup a lockbox on their property which can be purchased at your local hardware store. Other property owners use property agents to provide the key or simply meet the guests at the property themselves to walk through the property and provide entry instructions, keys, and other property details

Provide Instructions for your Guests upon Arrival - With every property, there are certain things that you will want your vacation rental guests to know about upon entering such as how to use certain electronic components, where to place trash, whether or not to recycle, where extra linens and towels are located, what the rules of the neighborhood are (i.e. loud music, parties, etc.), and other elements. It's important to provide them with a set of instructions that they can clearly follow so that the experience is an enjoyable for not only yourself but for your guests as well.

Take high Quality Pictures of the Property and Surrounding Area - It's extremely important to take high quality photos of the property and to archive them in digital format on your computer or other digital media disc. Photos speak volumes for your property and will make the difference between a successful vacation rental property and unsuccessful one. In addition, staging the property properly is an added plus to give people the sense of what they could be doing in your property. You should take photos with a camera that is at least 5 megapixels. If you can't get a high quality digital camera, you should hire a professional photographer to take the photos. This will be well worth it in the long run.

Prepare a Description of the Property, Amenities, nearby Activities and Bedroom/Room Layout - It's very critical to provide potential guests with accurate information regarding your property. You'll need to put together a descriptive paragraph or two regarding the property, a list of the amenities & activites, and room/bed layout. You'll use this information in marketing your property on various Websites throughout the Internet.

Decide whether or not you Wish to Utilize a Rental Agent or Property Managment Company - You can still 'do-it-yourself' and also utilize rental agents and property management companies as well to rent your vacation rental. You'll need to make sure that you keep an updated list of your own rental dates if you're renting the property

Purchase Vacation Rental Software to Assist with the Management of your Vacation Rental Property - While we all want to think we can do everything ourselves, sometimes we may take on more than we can chew. It's important to find a good vacation rental software system that you can utilize to assist you with booking and managing your vacation rental property or properties

Begin Marketing your Property and Booking Reservations - Now that all the leg work is done, you can actually begin to market & book your own property. The process is actually rather simple and straightforward. There are several sites that have been created to assist you with this and ads range from $199/year to $399/year and up depending on which Website you utilize

where is my faith?

I really don't know what we should do about our house. I need some faith to look with joy to Gods plan. Instead of anticipating His goodness I am full of fear! I should not doubt He will give us wisdom and provision. The very big bills are landing on Juergen's desk. The bank, notary and city all want their money. We will need to pay for 2 houses next month, That really hurts! And we need wisdom about weather we should rent our house out...and a good renter! If we rent our house out, we need to keep the kitchen here. We need to plan on painting. Maybe plan on an easy garden for the renter to care for. I even had the idea of using our house as an vacation house. If I could rent it out one week per month it would just about cover the mortgage. Two weeks per month would actually give us a profit. But is there a market for a vacation house near Heidelberg?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Does anyone want to rent our house?

Juergen finally got to talk with the man at our bank. He can give us a pretty good loan for 5 years. Then after 5 years we can try to sell the house with no penalty for selling. So maybe since the housing market is so flat, we should just rent our house out for 5 years? We could paint the ceilings and stairs, and replant the garden (even put a swing set in for a family), and redo the hardwood floors. Does anyone know a good family looking to rent a house for a few years?

Just a dream

I packed another box today and cleaned too. Nicole did some garden work. Jessica has been home with a flu. Philip and Sarah got their report cards. Philip got a B (2) average. That's pretty good! First graders don't get grades but Sarah did very well. Thomas gets his grades next week. I think he did fine. I hope I have no least not negative surprises! I'm feeling a little down. The weather has been pretty wet and cold. I'm frustrated about the non sale of our house. I am also a little disappointed we don't get the keys to our new house today. But I know it will work out OK. I'm just impatient. I have been looking a big swings. I am pretty sure we don't have the money for a big swing, but I can dream! I use to spend hours on the swings when I was a kid. But most of our kids are big now. I don't want a little swing only Sarah can use. I want something Jessica can play on. Something a youth group can play on. It will probably just have to go on my wish list...but isn't this a cool swing!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Packing and cleaning

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen
Hebrews 11:1

I did pack boxes today, and I also did some cleaning. Nicole pulled weeds. And God willing we will do more tomorrow. I got a nice letter from someone that looked at our house 2 weeks ago. They said it was too big so they will not be buying it. They didn't need to write. I'm sorry they said no, but I'm blessed they took the time to write. I am continually reminded that I have no control. I can not make someone buy my house! But I can clean and pack. So I'll try really hard to just do what I can. And I'm again on my knees scrubbing the floors and trying to let go of my fear.

The wait

The owners of our house didn't send in some paper work. So the whole process maybe longer? We think it will be OK and we will get the house August 1st. But I thought we might get the keys tomorrow. Right now that looks like it will not happen. I'll just have to wait the extra 10 days. In the mean time I find it hard to pack and clean our house. I have lost all hope we can sell the house. I know I should get outside and pull weeds. A big part of me says "what is the use"! But I need to kick myself...and keep trying! I have to be ready just in case someone actually does want to look at the house. We lowered the price and know one has called. Not one inquiry. It's 11,000 Euros cheaper and still no interest! That's disheartening! I guess we may need to rent it out. And that means learning about being a landlord. I didn't want to do that. And of course that's just one more thing to study, just when we are getting ready to move. I find it very easy to buy and renovate a house. You can control that process. But selling a house in a bad market...that's hard! Please pray for us. I am getting discouraged. What I need more then a buyer is faith in God. He controls everything. I need the faith that He has this small thing under his control. His will be done! I also need to be faithful with all the things I can do. I can pull weeds just in case someone does want to look at the house! Even if I lack faith, I should be faithful. I need to believe God will honor that.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A new bed for Jessica

I just won the bid on this very cute black iron king size bed for Jessica's room. She always wants to sleep in my big bed, I thought she would like her own big bed. I think it's really cute! I'm going to make her a quilt from old blue jeans. She likes to sleep with heavy blankets on. That's an autistic thing.

A cold wet day

There is a cold rain outside. It feels more like the late fall, not mid summer. Jessica got sick at school so I picked her up. She had her graduation yesterday but she has class until next week. We will see if she recovers enough to go back this week.

I found a darling black iron bed on e Bay I want to buy for Jessica's bedroom. I would paint her bedroom a pale yellow. I also saved a very large box of old jeans. I thought I would make some quilts from them. That would look cute in Jessica's room. She has allot of Art's and crafts stuff from school. I'm also giving her the large wardrobe Nicole painted. It's going to be a very nice bedroom. Sarah gets Jessica and Nicole's white iron daybeds. Her room will be 2 shades of pink and also tan with white butterflies. I think we are going to give Nicole the ground floor bedroom (the old kitchen). I bought allot of nice African stuff for Jessica's room, but now I'm going to give it to Nicole. I am going to try to find an old bedroom set with a king size bed. Nicole has been working on African animal masks. Those will go in her room. When we have guests, Nicole can move upstairs. Sarah will have an extra bed, or Jessica will also have a large bed. So Nicole's room will double as our guestroom. It has it's own bathroom across the hall. Nicole's office stuff can be upstairs in the sunroom. And her art workshop will be down stairs in the basement. She is basically going to be spread out all over the house. But I'm glad she is willing to be flexible. It will be a very nice guest room.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Graduation day

Today was Jessica's last official day of school. They had a graduation ceremony followed by a coffee. Jessica was so sad she would not go to the formal ceremony. So we sat with her and I cried. I cried as I saw teacher after teacher greet Jessica. She has been so loved! We don't really know what will come next. She is getting medical tests. So far it looks like she has thyroid trouble. She is very aggressive at school. We need to give her something to calm her down or they will not let her go to the workshop in Bruchsal. I have peace it will be OK. Even her dear teacher maybe able to continue a few hours per week with her. I have no fear she will be OK. I wish I had the same peace about selling our house. But I am not worried about Jessica. She has had a very good time in school, and now she is going on to something new. It will be good.

Monday, July 18, 2011

I think we will try to sell the house at a loss

Before we rent our house out, we are going to lower the price (taking a loss) and try to sale it now. If you want a good deal on a pretty good house then let us know. We are about to drop the price below it's value. I hope it goes fast!

You can see the house here. The new price will be 299,000€. That is a super deal! If you are looking, or know someone looking please let us know. I really want to sell it. One house is enough to manage.

Rototilling Video

One of the first things I need to do at our house is move my plants. I'll move my plants to raised beds (I'll just move the raised beds I already have), and hold my plants there until my flower beds are ready next spring. I plan to till the grass on the front of the house. I'll add lime and compost. Then I'll cover the new beds with weed blocking cloth. On top of the cloth, I'll add mulch. These beds will sit over winter. Next spring I'll transplant my plants that are waiting in the raised beds. I guess moving the raised beds, and transplanting plants will happen right away. The preperation of the flower beds can wait until fall. We will probably consider plastering the basement walls in the fall or even winter. That doesn't need to happen right away.

Earth plaster

Another idea for the basement walls is earth plaster. You nail a bamboo screen to the walls as a base. Then you plaster it with 2 or 3 coats of cob. Cob is a plaster made from clay (like potter clay) fine sand and finely chopped straw,and a small amount of wheat paste and water. Instead of straw you can also use straw manure. This brings a real natural color to the walls. It doesn't smell once it dries. So we could actually have cow poop on the walls! It sounds pretty bad, but looks very awesome.

making lime

I'm looking at plastering the basement walls with lime plaster. I think this will be beautiful! This is how they use to make it. They used the lime for the fields to improve the soil. But you can also use lime for plaster.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

We may need to rent

We haven't sold our house yet. Unfortunately it doesn't look like a good time for people selling. I think the entire economy of the world makes everything so uncertain. People are just waiting to see what happens. I'm trying not to get emotional about this. I'm trying to just be wise. We have 3 choices. First we could just wait. It does take time to sell a house. We will be losing about 1200 € per month. That can really add up. But our house could sell in a few months. Then we don't have the risk of a renter. We could drop the price. But we are not asking for much. Every € we drop the price is a loss for us. Say we drop it 10,000€ , that is a loss of 10,000€. We would honestly need to drop the price 20,000€ to sell it now. So is it worth it to sell at that kind of loss? The last idea is to rent. We could probably get enough money from rent to cover the interest on the mortgage. We still have other costs (taxes, insurance and maintenance). So if we rent our house out, we will loose money too. But the loss is smaller then having an empty house. And in 5 years the market may be better. So maybe we should just rent the house out? We had a couple that was going to look at our house this week. They called to say they found something else. So sad! But I'm trying not to panic...I just need wisdom. That is, Juergen and I need wisdom. Should we wait and see (that cost 1200 € per month) or just find a renter?

Saturday, July 16, 2011


This is our house the first time we saw it in 2007. So we get the keys in 2 weeks ( maybe sooner God willing) and start to paint and do all sorts of other cool things to it! It's so weird! So great, and so unreal!

Yoda recording for TomTom GPS - behind the scenes

Juergen's GPS is really broken. I went to pick Thomas up, and got super lost. I don't have a GPS. I think Juergen should get a TomTom with Darth Vaders voice, and I'll take Yoda.

cool stuff

I found these fire house lockers on e bay. Cool! I don't know if we have the space or money for them, but what a cool way to keep the kids coats, shoes, and back packs in order! I definitely want to consider this!

So we get our house in one or two weeks. Maybe even next Friday? I haven't actually been in the house since April. I'm looking forward to being in the house...just sitting there and dreaming! I have a hard time imagining what it will be like. It makes me think of heaven...such a distant dream.

A.W. Tozer - The Deeper Life

Refuse to be average. Let your heart soar as high as it will.”
A. W. Tozer

Thursday, July 14, 2011

She got in!!!!

The letter came today. Nicole got accepted in the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste Karlsruhe. She starts in October. I was more excited then she was. I couldn't hold back the tears! I'm so happy for her. We both knew she could find many other things to do if she didn't get in. Not many people do get in on their first try. She could try again next spring. But praise God she doesn't need to try again! She is in...and now she can study art at one of the very best schools in Europe! Very, very cool!!!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


We have our moving days, August 22- 23 (2 days). We don't need help with the boxes but we could use help putting all the wardrobes together (Kleiderschranke). We are also thinking about renting our house out. But we do have a serious buyer looking at the house next Thursday. They are a retired couple. Our neighbors would love that! Their daughter lives near here. They want to move near her...and want room for the grand kids. Sounds perfect. Please pray for us to sell. If you want to help us paint our new house, or take kleiderschranke apart then please let me know.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Nicole's bedroom set, Jessica's Dr

Juergen wrote a letter to the seller of Nicole's bedroom set. He wrote that we saw what they have done, and they should give us the set for our price or we will report them to eBay. They wrote back that they would call the police because we are trying to extort. Juergen will write them back. They can keep the set, we don't want to buy it from them. But we will report the whole thing to eBay because what they have done is wrong! So sadly Nicole will not get the set. The seller will most likely get kicked off of eBay...and then open another eBay account. But at least they will find out they can not do stuff like this. I hope eBay doesn't give us any trouble. We should have reported them directly instead of trying to figure it out privately!

Juergen and I took Jessica to an autism specialist today. It took 5 of us to hold her down while they took blood. They are testing things like Vit D, and serotonin levels. We want to see if anything Natural can be given to improve her anxiety level. She needs to calm down, and not be so aggressive towards others. We meet the Dr next week for results.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Some of our plans so far

In the hall we plan to paint the stair rail black. We want to paint the ceiling and moldings white. The walls will be a very pale tan. The floor will be terracotta ceramic tile. We want a large wardrobe made of wood to hang coats in. I also want a old wooden dresser for gloves and scarfs. I may even add an black iron pellet oven in the corner. And on the floors we will add Persian rugs.

I didn't win the bid

I waited until the last minute to bid on Nicole's bedroom set. Unfortunately the winner of the set was willing to bid higher then me. And what is funny is the winner of the set already posted the bedroom set again on eBay as a direct buy for 3 times what they had paid (too rich for my blood)! At least I know I have an eye for what is good! And I'll just have to keep looking for another set for her. She turns 18 years old in August. I think an Art Deco Bedroom set would be a very cool gift!

Wait a minute!!! It is the very same seller that has listed the bedroom set at a higher price!!! We are going to contact them and say "wait a minute"!!!! If they do not sell it to us, at our price we will contact eBay. That is not legal! They can not buy it themselves and re list it at a higher price! WRONG!!!!

My great-grandmother 11 X's back

My mom is very busy tracing our family tree. It's very colorful and pretty grand. One of my grandmothers was the founder of the very first women's Bible study in America. She belived more in religous freedom and the power of the Holy Spirit.

Anne Marbury Hutchinson is recognized as one of the first in the American colonies to champion freedom of religion and freedom of assembly, which brought persecution upon her. Thanks to her example and that of others, a century and a half later these rights were explicitly granted to all U.S. citizens in the Bill of Rights. Her great courage and intelligence is manifest in the transcript of her trial at which she allowed herself to be banished from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and later excommunicated rather than recant.
Anne was born in 1591 in Alford, Lincolnshire, England to Rev. Francis Marbury and his wife Bridget Dryden Marbury. She was the fifth of his sixteen children and they were raised in a very religious home. Her father had been imprisioned for advocating freedom of religion and had taught his daughter well. Anne assisted her mother as a midwife and became skilled in medicine. In 1612 she married William Hutchinson, a textile merchant. They resided for the next 22 years in Alford, where they had fourteen children.
Rev. John Cotton To flee religious persecution, this family decided to follow the exiled minister of their choice, John Cotton across the Atlantic Ocean. They emigrated to the village of Boston, in the wilderness of the New World. They arrived in 1634 with their ten surviving children, only 4 years after Boston was founded and 14 years after the Mayflower had arrived. Anne brought new life and light to this world, dispensing medicine wisdom and cheer. She began what was probably the first women's group in America, by inviting women to her home each week to discuss that week's sermon. Soon, however, prominent men were also attending and the city's theocratic leaders noticed that she had more influence than many of their ministers. The only ministers she approved of were John Cotton and his assistant John Wheelwright, who had married her husband's sister Mary.
Gov. John Winthrop Governor John Winthrop censured and then banished Rev. Wheelwright, and those who supported him were deprived of their weapons. The May, 1637, elections defeated the "Hutchinsonians" who held public office. Soon afterward Anne was also brought to trial. The proceedings of the trial are very instructive to read. Anne's intelligence was far too much for her inquisitor Gov. Winthrop; in fact, she has been said to have been the most intellectual woman in America in that century. When she insisted on knowing what the charge against her was, he said she had broken of fifth commandment and dishonored her parents by inviting disreputable people into her home. She quoted the Bible which states that older women should instruct the younger, which he could not refute. When he then went on to ask her questions, she asked him why, if he didn't think she should even teach women, was he now asking her to instruct the entire court? She also had the temerity to ask that the ministers, who were both her accusers and judges, to take an oath to tell the truth. What finally swayed the court against her was when she claimed that the Holy Ghost had given her revelations. She was banished from Boston and later excommunicated from the church. Later her youngest sister Katherine was imprisoned in Boston for her religious views and cruelly whipped.
Anne's Trial in 1637 In 1638 Anne moved to Aquidneck in what would become Rhode Island to join her husband where religious freedom prevailed. Many of her followers accompanied her, along with 9 of their children from ages 2 to 17. Edward, their eldest son did not come, but had been one of the founders of Newport, Rhode Island. Persecution followed her to Rhode Island, where Massachusetts tried to extend its jurisdiction. After William's death four years later, she moved with six of her children to the wilderness of New York and built the first house on Long Island sound near what became New Rochelle, New York. On Aug. 20, 1643 she and all of her children there except Susanna were killed in an Indian raid. Nine-year-old Susanna was taken captive by them and then ransomed back by the Dutch four years later and returned to relatives in Boston.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

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My friends daughter will be going to Kenya to work with kids. She is going with Campus Crusade for Christ. She goes for a year. What “got me” in this video are the children that are taken in by the other families. They have lost their parents. People who have nothing...adopting kids who have nothing. Why is it so easy for them to say yes, and so hard for us to say yes? We think our lives are stressful, and they walk for a month to find a safe place to live…just for food and clean water. We have more then enough. Juergen took Sarah to her new school today. She met her new teacher. It’s a 5 star school! All new everything. A great music program. They even have a dance teacher. I get overly stressed by cleaning my whole house. We show it 2 times tomorrow. Please pray we can sell it. I just am so tired from this weekly process! But I’m so humbled by this video. How could I survive what they survive? And yet they are generous enough to adopt.


Juergen and I found a plain Terracotta we both liked at Hornback. It is a finished ceramic tile in Terracotta color. The real stuff (real terracotta) cost much more, and needs to be ruffed up/distressed, sealed, stained, and waxed. We think we can always pull the tile up and refinish the marble. But this tile cost only 12.50Euro per SM, while finishing marble cost 40€ per SM and is much harder to maintain. At this point we are concerned about money, and over all maintenance. I think it will look nice but not "too" nice. I don't want people to feel uneasy because it's too fine. We live there, and we are not "fine" designer types! So we can order the tile 10 days before we need it. We plan to have it put down the 3rd week of August. I found a wardrobe on EBay I want to buy. It is a good size for the hall. It sells on Monday, so I hope I can win the bid. I am also bidding on an 1930 Art Deco bedroom set for Nicole's 18Th birthday. Nicole picked it out, and loves it. That sells tomorrow afternoon. I can not forget to bid at the last moment! I won't bid now, or I will push the price way up! I'll post pictures if I win the bids. I found a table and chairs at a 2nd hand store, but Juergen didn't like them. So I'm being very good...not buying anything big without asking him first. But we want a sofa sleeper for Sarah's room, a bigger table for the kitchen, and over stuffed chairs for Jessica's tv room.

We have 2 families coming to look at our house in Leimen Sunday afternoon. It would be awsome if we could sell it! I'm going to clean very good today. Monday I am going to start packing (God willing).

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Terracotta can be elegant Juergen!

I'm just putting this here for Juergen

Pietra di Matera Miscela Crema 29 Euro a sm. What do you think? It is fake sandstone from Italy. All the beauty without the work!

a harvest

"So I gave you a land on which you did not toil and cities you did not build; and you live in them and eat from vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant." Joshua 24:13

I was thinking of this verse when I dug some potato's from my compost pile. The plants grew from the potato peels I put in the pile. So cool! Nicole sprayed the grapes for mold. You spray them twice to keep the fruit from going bad. We had beautiful grapes last summer, but by the fall (because of all the rain) the fruit rotted on the vines. I don't like to spray anything...unless I have to. We need to wait 28 days after the spray time,and then we can eat the grapes. Really, a harvest depends on many things we do not control. It is grace!

Juergen had lunch with one of the persons that looked at our house this weekend. Unfortunately they don't want to buy it. They like it allot, but really can not afford it. So they will stay in their apartment. Sad! But we have no control over this too. I have gotten a few more inquiry's. We will continue to place our hope in God. Housing markets change, God doesn't!

Tuesday, July 05, 2011


Sound can be absorbed by certain materials: rubber, cork, and acoustic tiles, for example.

Oh well! Just when I thought cork was perfect I remembered that Nicole and Juergen both want to play guitar in the hall! If I put cork in the hall, it will kill the acoustics! Maybe it will still work for the boys rooms? Sad! It sounds like such a great material! I'm still leaning towards the Terracotta!


Here is a post on the pro's and cons of cork floors. I am still not sure what to put in our hallway. The Marble is very beautiful but fussy to care for. Not what you want with 5 kids, a dog and a mom that spills coffee! Terracotta is still on my list, but it isn't cheep! Cork is about 36€ per square meter, and good Terracotta is more like 44€. What's more, Cork can be insulted easily. It's something Juergen could do himself. We would need to pay someone to lay down the Terracotta (or any other tile). I like the warmth of cork, the naturally occurring patterns, and how it absorbs noise! It isn't water proof, so it's not the right thing for the boys room (I think). But carpet is also not maybe? It's not like we have a wet basement! It seems every flooring has it's own + and -'s. I think, "Oh this is good" then I find out no! So I'm trying to look at all the options, trying to make a good choice for us. And really it is based on how our family lives, and what is best for us. I don't want to stress my family out trying to keep a fine floor fine! We need to live in the house, so it needs to be user friendly! And I don't want to use up too much money either! There are too many other things to pay for.

Monday, July 04, 2011

It's July the 4th

I have had a busy day, and I probably won't see any fireworks today. It's just another school day in Germany. The kids have 4 more weeks of school. I'm going to cut good German bread and eat it with good Dutch cheese and Italian salami for dinner. But that's what America is made of. Many people from many countries living free. Happy birthday my dear homeland! God bless you! I wish I was there for a real Hamburger and my mom's apple pie!

Let's get going!

It's Monday morning and I have already had 2 large cups of coffee. I still have a hard time waking up! I slept wrong on my arm & it hurts. Jess is home today. She has lice again (or still). With her super thick hair it's hard to treat it. I'm afraid I need to cut her hair short. I see no other way to really get rid of the lice. And I will treat everyone else in the house, wash all the bedding, and all the brushes too. Lot's of extra work! But Oh well! That is just how things go around here! I did get another call about the house today. So maybe 2 more families will look sometime this week. Only one family looked yesterday. They are a very interesting family. He is Italian, and she is Russian. They speech English, German, Russian and Italian to their 2 kids. And they need a big house for the grandparents that visit. They want to live in this area...pretty perfect. But I don't know if they liked it. I have zero idea how they felt. So I'm not going to hold my breath! I'm actually very relaxed about the whole matter. We get to renovate our new house in just 4 weeks. Most of my focus is on the new house...and I just have to believe the rest will work out. So today I take care of the lice...again!

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Marble floors

Juergen and I are now looking into keeping the marble floors in our hall, and just having them redone. We can not tell if this will work until we get the house in 4 weeks. Then we can pull up the cheap tile the owner put down and see if it is do able. It will cost 40€ a square meter to have it redone. But handmade Terracotta cost 44€ , and Sandstone is more like 60€. So it's cheaper for us to just keep what we already have. Marble is harder to care for then Terracotta, but easier then sandstone. I would need to invest in some good rugs in the high traffic areas of the floor. We visited Carrara last year. It was one of the best things we did in Italy. I loved the time we spent there. I'm 99% sure we have Carrara Marble because that is where Southern Germany gets it's Marble. It really would be a shame to cover it up. If we can not redo it, I vote for the Terracotta.

Here is a picture I took of the floor 4 years ago before it was covered by tile. It is a grey and white marble.

and here are some photo's from our trip to Carrara. That was really cool!

Another day to hope

Juergen took the kids to church today. In fact he taught Philip's class. As most of our friends know, we take turns staying home with our autistic daughter Jessica. Someone asked me last week if that bothered me. It has bothered me in the past. I sure love being in church with my husband. But something’s you just accept. I like being home with Jessica. I listen to the best teaching on God TV. Today I heard Joseph Prince teach on being a prisoner of hope. I am trying very hard to hope in God and not be so concerned about the circumstances. I recall a story in the Bible (I forget where...I think in Kings). There was an awful famine in the land. The people were desperately hungry. They even eat their own children. And Israel was being attacked. God said through a prophet that there would be plenty of food the next day, but the person who was doubting God would see it and not taste it. Sure enough Israel was delivered. The people had food. And the one who doubted God was trampled to death as the people rushed to collect the food. Not pretty! But the idea that things can change fast is very very encouraging! The housing market doesn't look great, but that can change over night. I hear in Stuttgart people are worried about the Euro, and are buying houses. That doesn't seem to be happening here...but we only need one buyer. Today 2 families will look at our house. But I'm not hoping in them. My hope has to remain in God. He is bigger then the housing market! If we sell our house today that would be wonderful! but my hope in the God that knows all that we need, when we need it. He knows who should live here. Who would be a blessing to the neighbors. I’m trying to be a prisoner of hope, not a prisoner of circumstances!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Work day

Juergen is with the kids cleaning a path in the forest. Our church does this every year for the city of Heidelberg. One of our goals this year is to teach our kids to work. So they are picking up trash and moving rocks today. They will be painting and moving dirt at our new house next month. They have very little to do now. It's just the basic "clean your room" and "take out the trash". But the kids do need to work! I have some peace today as I clean the bathroom, do laundry and dust and mop. We show the house tomorrow afternoon. Please pray that we can sell it.

Friday, July 01, 2011


I found a local place that sells handmade french terracotta floor tiles. I don't know if we should go with the Italian sandstone or the terracotta. The terracotta is not as formal, and it's very easy to care for. The sandstone is very beautiful, but also gets stained easy. The terracotta reminds me of Mexico and Southern California and Arizona. In other words home. It would make the hallway look like an Italian or Mexian Villa. Not formal, but very fine.