Friday, November 29, 2013

my uncle died today

We had a lovely dinner with the family. Then my sister in law wanted to go to a black Friday sale. But sadly we got a call that my Uncle died today. I had spoken with him this afternoon. It's my dad’s oldest brother and I'm thankful I can be here with my dad during this time. I’m praying for the family.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Swamp People - The Gator Makes His Move

Philip is watching swamp people with his grand dad!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


I finally slept well and feel like a person again. Mom is busy getting some stuff ready for Thanksgiving. Dad helped with the pies. And I walked around the garden to take a few photos. It is almost December so most everything is dead or asleep. But you can tell they have a very nice garden. They have one of the largest black walnut trees in the State of Oregon. I think it's a protected tree. And we spent many summer days climbing the old apple tree we call charley. I am going to try to bring some seeds home from charley to see if I can grow a tree in Germany. Last night Philip and I saw the first showing of the Disney movie Frozen. We loved it! And I'm hoping to go visit my sister Shelley today.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Jet lag

You would think I would be getting over the jet lag but I seem to be getting worse. I was up half the night starting at 2am. I'm making myself stay in bed, but I know I'm going to be pretty tired today. I may take Philip to see the movie Frozen today. That's if I can get tickets. It opens tomorrow, but they have an early showing today. I also want to get some yard work done. And also hang out with my dad.

Lunch with my sister

Philip and I did a little more shopping with my mom today. I found some nice Christmas gifts for Thomas today. And we ran into my sister Dianna. So Philip and I went to lunch with Dianna and her son Chris, and her husband Paul. And I got the tour of their new house. I was feeling very tired today. Somehow the jet lag seems worse as time goes by. It is only about 9pm and I'm going to bed totally wiped out. I need to pull my camera out and start to take some photos. And I need to get out in the garden. I'm a little nervous about the weather. I wonder how the poor weather will delay our trip home. My dad sleeps allot. He is happy to see us, but I feel like he just does not feel that good. I'm wondering how having the whole family around is going to stress him out. He tires easily. My mom also seems pretty tired. We may all be getting my sister Shelley's cold? I'm really feeling drained. They seem glad we are here, but it also seems stressful to them because it is a break in their routine. They are both in their mid-70’s. I think they need their quiet and rest. Even positive stress is still stress. I can tell my dad is not feeling well and feels stressed.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

We got here

It was a crazy and long trip with more than one delay but we got here ok. And after 28 hours of travel it was not hard to sleep through the night. The first day we visited with my parents and sister Dianna, and her daughter Bridgett and kids. We all went to the dollar store where the kids got to buy whatever they wanted (that was fun) and also had lunch at a Mexican restaurant. I got a killer headache about 3pm. I'm sure it was just jet lag. But Philip and I both managed to stay awake until 9pm. Unfortunately I did wake up at about 2:30am. And today I'm feeling pretty tired. I figure I'll get over the jetlag in time to go back home again. We missed church today. Philip is having fun watching TV. We don't have TV at home. The funny commercials are a hit with him. I'm also catching up with my mom and all her geological research. My mom is really into genealogy. I think it’s cool to know my family history, but my adopted kids don’t know anything about their birth families. So I feel like I cannot make a big deal out of the topic. It would be so awesome to know even the names of Philip, Thomas, and Sarah’s birth parents. But that may never be known. And they are perfectly wonderful to me without a knowledge of history. I simply have mixed feeling because of this. But my mom learns such interesting things about the travels, struggles and accomplishments of our family.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

I'm ready to go home

My bags are packed and sitting in the hallway. I had Nicole weigh them so I don't need to pay a charge for overweight luggage. I checked in online but they don't have Philip and me sitting together. I hope I can change that tomorrow at the airport. I need to copy some audible books onto my iPod, and find the power converter, and charge my cell phone. Apart from that, we are ready to go! I don't look forward to the long trip. We have 2 layovers, so it will take 28 hours door to door. I think I'll be able to sleep well when we arrive. I don't have many expectations. I just love being with my family. I filled our freezer today so Nicole will have something to cook. And I know Juergen will buy plenty of pizza and McDonalds. But that is OK. He is a great dad. He will be fine. He managed just fine when Nicole and I went to America in May. I have 100% confidence in him! And I thank God for him! So I’m going to enjoy dinner and a movie with my family, them sleep and go to the airport. What a gift to be going home!

Monday, November 18, 2013


Our flight leaves at 10:45am on Friday. That means Juergen will not be able to drive us to the airport. Nicole will need to drive us, and Juergen will get the others off to school. And I have Philip's stuff packed already. I have a load of laundry to do, then I'll also be packed. It isn't really such a big challenge because I get 2 big cases and 2 carry ons to fill. I'm mostly bringing chocolate and gummy bears. And Philip and I are only bringing 2 changes of cloths. We can always do laundry at my mom’s house. I want the space to bring home Christmas gifts. Philip and I will do some shopping! I'm trying to stay calm. I am really looking forward to being there! I bought a new audio book to listen to on the flight. It’s called “Not a Fan” by Kyle Idleman. It is about being a committed Christian.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Forever and Ever (Winnie the Pooh) Lyrics

shopping with Jessica on ebay

Jessica and I just won the bid on 29 play mobile people. We paid 8Euro including the postage.

Advent, Advent

I'm getting really excited about our trip to America. Juergen talked to Philip's teacher. It's OK for him to travel with me. Our suitcases have seen better days. The large case Nicole took to Cyprus is now broken. And the other large case Juergen took to Africa does not close anymore. So I ordered 2 new large cases on Amazon. In fact I should be getting a steady stream of boxes in the mail. It will be Advent before we return from America, so I ordered Advent calendars for all the kids. And I ordered 12 pairs of socks for Juergen. I thought I would put one sock in each day of his advent calendar (along with other stuff like chocolate and gummy bears). Then at the end of the 24 days he will have 12 pairs of new socks. I have so many things to consider before I leave. I'm trying not to stress out. I just need to work off the list. But what a happy thing to be going home for Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 11, 2013


I planted some bulbs today. I’m listing them here just to help keep a record. Today I planted , “Imperialis Lutea” pineapple plant, 2kg of a no name red and white tulip, 2kg of a purple-pink tulip, , , Nanus Gladiola, “Blue Magic” Iris, “Vineale” Allium, 2kg yellow no name tulip, “Pink Sensation” Hyacinth, and “Anemone” De Caen. These bulbs will join the hundreds of other bulbs in our garden. Spring should be lovely! Pictured are Iris reticulata'Gordon', "Hemisphere" Tulip and "Cheerful" Narisses also planted today.


It’s Monday morning and Jessica refused to let me dress her. So the bus that takes her to the workshop has come and gone. And as a consequence she gets no TV or Computer the entire day, and no car rides. She has to sit in her room bored all day. I’m sure she will let me dress her tomorrow. In the meantime I’m folding laundry and waiting for the workers that will repair our balconies. It’s a very big and expensive job. Once the balconies are repaired, we can have the house painted. This house has not been painted since 1954 when it was first built. It will look pretty fabulous with a fresh coat of paint! God willing the house can be painted in the spring next year. My coffee is cold and I’m pretty stressed from my battle with Jessica. I hope the rest of the week goes smoother. At least Nicole is home!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug - Official Teaser Trailer [HD]

from Cyprus to Oregon...we are on the move

Nicole came home from her 6 weeks in Cyprus. Jessica and I picked her up from the airport in Frankfurt. She was pretty tired from the travel. I missed her allot as you can imagine. But actually I did not miss her as much as I thought I would. I knew she was happy and growing. I guess I was just so glad for this, it took over any personal missing of her. Does that make any sense? When she is happy, I'm happy. I know I can let go, as long as I am sure she is doing well. And she was doing great. Her time there was amazing. And she was very inspired and creative there. She wrote many songs and did some good painting. And I found myself growing closer to Sarah. Sarah was happy to have more of my time. So I guess that is pretty good too! And now my thoughts are on my trip to America. In only a few weeks Philip and I will travel to Oregon. I'm glad to be traveling with Philip. I wanted to spend more time with him. I feel like both the boys are going through a hard time. They want to break away from the family. They want more independence. This is normal and natural. But they should not be unteachable. They have loving and wise parents. We do not want to control them, but we do want to help them make wise choices. We will put up boundaries like the amount of time they spend on the computer. We will still encourage them to read, do their homework, and clean up their rooms. And if they are close to us, they will be more receptive to our input. So taking Philip out to eat shrimp, and shopping to buy a new baseball cap is an important investment. And I’m also very happy to be seeing my family. I could get sad when I think of how short the time will be, but I’m just not going to think about what I cannot change. Instead I’ll just try to enjoy every moment. And I already plan on returning next spring. So I’m happy I’ll not need to fit everything in at one time. I want to spend most of my time just holding my dad’s hand. That will be my highest priority. Everything else is good…but that one thing is necessary. We will bring our work cloths and spend a few hours with Mom in the garden. We will drink tea with Shelley and take Dianna out to breakfast and we will want to see a movie with Rick. And naturally see the rest of the family. I'm afraid the time will go by very fast. But I praise God for the opportunity to come. And my suitcase is being packed today. I'm also so glad to have Philip's luggage space!

Thursday, November 07, 2013


I've been thinking allot about Germany. When I look at what Germany was like after WW2, and what it is like now I am amazed at how this could have happened? The progress and beauty is nothing short of a miracle. I was in England last May. The country is falling apart. You cannot rely on past glory. And I guess this is true for our own lives too. We must all work hard and continue to invest in the future. I'm grateful for the extremely hard work Juergens parents’ generation did. Out of the ashes they built a very beautiful nation. And I know the nation was helped by Britain, America, and France. I do not really like the way Russia helped East Germany. And I'm shocked and saddened by the way the British, American's, French and Russians treated the Germans directly after the war. In a way I can understand the anger...they had lost so much during the war. Russia for example lost over 30 million people during WW2. But they raped the German women. This is never justified. The richest part of Germany is the South. This is the area the Americans occupied after the war. I would like to think American help had something to do with the success of the Southern part of Germany. But the Northern part was so heavily bombed during the war, and had so many people. The British really had the biggest job to do. I think America and Britain could use some help now. It would be good for both countries to have governments that could stand back a little and think objectively about what is the best way to move the nation forward. America has not been bombed, but so many of its cities are in ruin and need a good plan to come back.

After the War | Conquering Germany 001 (+playlist)

Monday, November 04, 2013

The making of Angela Merkel(unusual politician) a German enigma with An...

Sunday, November 03, 2013

BBC: Make Me a German (HD)

A day of rest

Juergen was at his dad's this weekend. Richard is doing fine. Juergen worries about him but he is doing really ok. I can never sleep well when Juergen is away. But he got home last night, and I could sleep. And today I sat with Jessica for two hours in McDonalds. She just loves to sit there and watch people, so this is what we did. She is so sweet! I love her so much! And I watched a movie and just got some rest. The kids have had fall vacation. They are good kids but it takes it out of me when they are on vacation. So I’m happy school begins again tomorrow. I have already begun to pack for my trip to America. I got Philip the travel document he needs to come into the states (ESTA). I look forward to the trip. Juergen took this photo of Sarah's soccer team. Thomas is one of the coaches. He also plays soccer on a team.

Friday, November 01, 2013

BBC - Wartime Farm Episode 1