Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!



The much anticipated dragons. Macen actually stopped asking for them about 2 wks before Christmas. He said all he wanted was hamm and trex from Toy Story. So I wasn't sure how the dragons would be received and Santa went through A LOT to get those things. He loved them and played with them all day ignoring his other presents for the most part.

 He also got some of the Toy Story characters he had been asking for.

Long before the dragons ever came about Santa had gotten him this castle and some knights to go with it. Macen has been playing with the dragons in it more than the knights.

After the excitement of opening presents was done and Macen had been playing for awhile, he opened his arms wide and exclaimed "This is the best Christmas ever" (You know because he has a whole 4 of them under his belt now :) He was thrilled with all the Christmas shows on tv and being able to play with his toys all day. It was a pretty great day with just 1 important piece missing but he was making sure Santa made it through Afghanistan without incident.


And here are some of the furry people. Santa didn't forget about them and Mo was very thankful for that. He loves his new toy and was wound up like a cat hopped up on cat nip the first several hours we were up. He slowed down to nap only to get crazy again in the afternoon. He must have been enjoying the Christmas spirit. Typically Myles is our crazy man bolting and jumping everywhere. He must have been feeling sick because he spent nearly all day under the tree. Mo had a cold earlier in the week so Myles must have caught it.

Friday, December 24, 2010

He's too little to drive...


We were heading to school yesterday when I opened the door I found the car like this...with Jingles at the steering wheel. Apparently he got hungry in the middle of the night and went to Burger King. He must have forgotten where the car is normally parked because this wasn't it. He was suppose to pull straight ahead to the carport. Macen was amused but said Jingles isn't allowed to drive but he was thrilled Jingles selected a happy meal and Macen got the toy. Ha ha!

Jingles left Macen a note this morning saying he had to leave to go back to the North Pole to help Santa tonight. He did leave behind some cool Christmas pj's though. Thanks for the fun Jingles! Maybe next year we won't be sick so often and you can have all the fun you had planned for us.

ETA: We went to the mailroom today to pick up our mail and Santa was there. Ugh, I had been trying to avoid Santa since Macen's last encounter with him. Santa talked to Macen about being a good boy and then gave him a mini candy cane. Macen looks at it and says "Oh no, not a candy cane again". Santa felt bad and said lets see what else we have and handed him some gummi bears. I felt bad about Macen's response and said Macen had a tramatic experience with Santa and candy canes a few weeks ago. A lady behind the counter helping with packages asked why it was tramatic so I had to explain what happened and they all laughed. Macen is not ever going to live this candy cane thing down.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Jingles' latest

Jingles had been on a short break due to Macen being sick for a few days. Prior to the sick days, Jingles hid candy canes throughout the house and that entertained Macen for most of the day. He found most of them before school but didn't find the last one until around 5pm. He is still talking about his elf hiding candy canes for him.

Jingles made a slide out of aluminum foil but Macen wasn't impressed. He wanted it taken down immediately much like the couch cushions and stacked canned goods.

Macen found Jingles taking a bath with marshmallows in the sink. He was highly amused by this and said we don't take baths with marshmallows, we eat them.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Afghan National Police Fishing Expedition

I have been horrible about posting from Afghanistan and I don't expect that to get any better. I got this video from the Provincial Chief of Police's aide after a trip to the Arghandab District of Zabul. There is a fairly large river that flows through the district and that is the scene of the video.

The ANP are using a GP-25 Grenade launcher mounted under the AK-47 as their fishing tool.  The first couple of rounds failed to explode, the third time was the charm.  This is Redneck Fishing Afghan Style .
Yes I did eat the fish the next day.
  video


Something is a little off on the soundtrack from the editing.   .

Friday, December 10, 2010

A message for Macen


Macen found this written on the bathroom mirror this morning and he was kinda excited. He hasn't been too thrilled about Jingles creating diorder in the house but this seem to meet his approval. Jingles stacked the sofa cushions and pillows the other day but Macen wanted them back in place immediately.

Macen appears to be getting in the Christmas spirit again after his disappointing visit with Santa a few weekends ago. He still says Santa only gave him a candy cane but I think he believes Santa will visit again and this time with presents. Santa has since made another appearance on post and will continue at the Graf post but I have been careful not to take him again. I think it would break his heart if he saw Santa again and didn't get his dragons.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

I see London, I see France

Jingles got ahold of Macen's underpants. We woke up to Macen's underwear and socks on the tree. Macen noticed it immediately (as he does with any change around the house). He wasn't overly impressed. He took off 1 sock and underwear and left it alone until he got home from school where he promptly said "These don't go here" and took all of them down.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Not Funny Anymore

I don't know who's big idea this is but it's getting old now. I don't know the exact amount of snow we have gotten since last Monday but it's atleast 16". I shoveled the driveway 3 times today and it needs it again before we leave in the morning. Macen's school doesn't close for snow :(


I am running out of places to put the stuff. The pile to the left is probably 3-4 ft tall.

The patio table from the last 2 snows we've gotten

I hate the stuff but it can be pretty

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Our December Roommate

One of Santas elves has come to stay with us. He will be keeping an eye on Macen and reporting back to Santa if he has been good or not. We have named him Jingles. He is perched up high on a shelf and can't be touched or his magic will go away. I've heard elves are mischievous. Let's hope Jingles is a good roommate or I'll have to make him scoop snow :)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ho Ho Ho

Macen saw Santa yesterday and boy does he know what he wants for Christmas. For the last month, Macen has said he is going to ask Santa for a zippleback, gronckle, nadder, nightmare, red death and toothless. These are the dragons in How To Train Your Dragon. Well all he ended up telling Santa was he wanted dragons which is fine, I was just happy he made it onto Santa's lap. Afterwards, Santa's elf gave Macen a candy cane.

Later in the day, we are talking about Santa coming and Macen said Santa gave him a candy cane. I didn't think too much about it but that night I said something about Santa bringing him dragons for Chrismas and he said in a more sad voice, "No, Santa gave me a candy cane". So he must have thought he was going to see Santa and get his presents at the same time. But all he got was a candy cane. I explained Santa would be coming on Christmas eve to deliver presents. My suspicions were confirmed this morning when Macen brought up Santa again and that he wasn't getting dragons, he just got a candy cane. Only this time, he was about to cry. So I explained it even more that he will see Santa 1 or 2 times and he has to tell him what he wants and then Santa goes back to the North Pole, makes the toys for him and then when we get up on Christmas morning, Santa will have been to our house and left presents under the tree. He seem to accept it this time. Maybe it will be more real when we get the tree up and start our celebration this week.

I told James from now on at Christmas time, we are going to tell Macen if he isn't good Santa will only bring him a candy cane :) Oh the tough life of a 3 year old.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to us....

(taken from our backdoor)

We woke up to snow this morning. We have gotten flakes the last 2 days but it melted as they landed. Macen was very excited and said "It's Christmas time". Thankfully it was all melted by afternoon but I think we have more coming this weekend. We now have 3-4 more months of this. Ugghh!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Gobble, Gobble

We're getting crafty! Macen and I made turkeys from toilet paper rolls. He did the painting himself and glued everything on but couldn't figure out the feathers. Oh and Macen is getting good at using glue. Scary, I know :)  

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Like Father, Like Son



I am way, way behind in posting these considering they were taken mid way through James' R&R and he has been gone for a week now. The boys are launching the rocket with a lot of feet power.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Not our Halloween costumes

James wanted us to wear these for Halloween and I declined with a "not cool" comment. And I am not sure how a post full of women whose husbands are deployed to Afghanistan would appreciate us walking around wearing these.

The Afghan men James works with sent them home with James. They are very nice. You might not be able to see but mine has a lot of sequin and bead work hand stitched onto it.




Monday, November 8, 2010

Bayreuth

Maisel Weisse Brewery Tour

This brewery is known mostly for its wheat beers. It was basically a museum but showed how the beers were brewed back in the day. Obvisiously, the process has come a long way. It was a really interesting tour.








The bar area where we enjoyed a beer that came with our tour.

Lunch



We found this wurst place for lunch. It looks like they bring it in for the winter and along with the wurst sandwiches, they sell winter beers and warm, mulled wine. After lunch, we wen to a REAL MALL! I don't think these are all that common here and if they are, they are located in bigger cities. We are in the middle of nowhere. Bayreuth is only 45 mins away though!

Eremitage



Both of these are decorated entirely with colored rocks. Unfortunately, they have closed the palace for the winter season. So we walked around the grounds and will come back in the summer when everything is in bloom.

The dragon hole. Macen is really into dragons so he thought this was pretty cool.


James thought about walking across this until he realized water was steadily pouring over it and the wet leaves made it slippery.



You can kinda see a path winding around this. I followed it up by myself since Macen was throwing his 2nd tantrum of the day :)



Daddy and Macen looking for fish. We can't wait to go back when lots of colors are blooming.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A nice afternoon

We headed to Regensburg after picking Macen up from school for some beer, chocolate and good food. I think we've mentioned before we are going to drink and eat our way through Europe.




The above photos are of James drinking a beer at a hospital brewery.  That's right a hospital brewery.  I guess it wasn't all that uncommon for hospitals or almshouses to have their own brewery and they would give the patients a "nightcap" right before bed.  Currently it is no longer a hospital but there is an associated nursing home that proceeds from the brewery go to support.  The middle picture is Macen looking at an aquarium and amusing some German Oomas (Grandmas) who were having their afternoon coffee in the brewery restaurant.


A view from the other side of the stone bridge.

James standing in line to get a wurst sandwich. Anytime we've been here, there is always a line. That says something.


This is the inside of the Dom we visited back in January. You can find it here


A very large chocolate store recommended by a neighbor. She also recommended a nice restaurant near the chocolate store. Just so happen to be a restaurant friends of ours had already recommended so we knew we had to try it. It was very good and we'll definitely be going back.