Day one in Southern Germany was spent walking along the cobble stoned streets of historic Schwäbisch Hall. The city dates back to the fifth century, where it's claim to fame was the salt that was distilled from it's groundwater by the Celts. We saw the St. Michaels, a church that was built sometime in the fourteenth century, and still has a mass grave or bone house under it's foundations (you can see the hundreds of bones stored there through a glass pane in the floor). There were art museums, buskers along the river, crooked little houses, and a walk through the park for our afternoon cappuccino.
Saturday, August 17, 2013
Friday, August 16, 2013
Sweden it's been real. Your rocky oceansides, free ferries, meatballs and lingen berries, and heather and moss covered landscapes have my heart. But we're off to Germany now. For farms and chocolate and my Oma.
hej då, just for a little while.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Jenni read about kayaking in Western Sweden in the National Geographic and it instantly went on our To Do list while were there...and do we recomend it? 100%.
We had the best day of our week weather-wise...it was balmy with a little breeze, and after a lengthy how-to that we understood not a word of, we pushed off into the open sea. We paddled passed and around several islands in the Northern Gothenburg Archipelago, and it was pretty dang spectacular. Little fishing villages, ferry routes, uninhabited islands, fika on an uninhabited island with a little nap time, a little swimming. Perfection.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
She made it.
And I am so so so happy and relieved.
Many planes, many hours, three days, and one new passport later, Jenni is here!
She was a champion - so much so that she landed, came home, ooohed and aaaahhed at the view, ate some dinner, and then partied at a concert till 1 am. Because we're young and and wild and free and no jet lag gonna hold us down.
Consequently we were introduced to the Movits. Swedish rap with a jazz swing to it and a super attractive saxaphone player? Sure, why not.
Monday, August 12, 2013
There's this thing in Sweden where they have miles of abandoned railroad that wind through valleys and towns, and then little glorified bicycles that go on the tracks. You rent a glorified bicycle and the fun never stops.
Day two of our inland adventure was a splendid success, complete, of course with fika.
Ps. Also there was a traditional Swedish breakfast spread and I got to have it with this muffin.
Sunday, August 11, 2013
These kids waste no time. On Sunday morning bright and early we were on our merry way to adventure. We left on the 7 O'we-shouldn't-be-up ferry to Lake Laxjön, a gorgeous basin, about three hours inland. We had a lovely little villa all to ourselves, the perfect home base for forays out into the cold...because it was. It poured (HI SUMMER!). It was the most dramatic canoe trip I have maybe ever embarked upon (unless you count the time I told Alisa and Kelsey that I could canoe when I couldn't and almost floated us over a waterfall). There was rain and thunder and lightning and a sky that would have done Mordor proud and it was just beautiful.
Saturday, August 10, 2013
Where we are:
See Goteborg? Bottom left, kind of? Ok, now go out to sea a little bit.
See Goteborg? Bottom left, kind of? Ok, now go out to sea a little bit.
Yep, like right there. We're on Öckerö - and it's real pretty.
And we're with these lovelies:
RRJ Reunion 2013, roughly 20 years after the very first one.
So dear readers, here I am, shamefacedly posting pictures two months later. I promised myself when I began this blog that I wouldn't guilt trip myself if I fell behind, because LIFE amiright? But I do feel guilty. I can't help it.
Now on to bigger and better things...story times.
* * *Part One
On August 9th, Jenners and I headed out to Europe for a few slammin' weeks of island hopping, kayaks, castles, backpacks, and schnitzel. And seeing my family. We packed our bags, had airplane snax on the ready, and suffered minor heart attacks when Seattle traffic had us at the airport an hour late. We made it though, and we looked like this:
If you've seen anything more put-together than this, call me, I'll give you a prize.
Half an hour later, with my passport stamped and my backpack already plane bound, disaster struck, finally having made it through the traffic also. Jenni handed her passport in, we were told to wait, and with 30 minutes left to get through customs, find our gate, and board a plane, Jenni was told she wasn't going to be allowed out of the country. We were entering the EU in Amsterdam, and apparently Amsterdam mandates that you need 6 months left on your passport from your last day in Europe before it expires - and Jenni's missed that deadline by a grand total of 8 days. Honestly, I didn't believe them. Any minute they were going to follow up with "Next time, make sure you have at least a year to be safe." or do the thing where they look at each other, sigh, and say "Ok, ladies, we cannot make this exception again, but off you go." No can do, folks.
Jenni was rebooked onto a flight for the following Monday (two days later), a hefty fine and emergency passport renewal thrown in the mix for good measure. We made our tearful, dramatic farewells...
(Embracing, with gusto)
"I can't leave you...."
"You can't stay..."
"But I would be such a bad friend..."
"I would be such a bad friend if I made you stay..."
"Go....just go....you're going to miss the flight...I'll see you soon..."
The dutch airline official was probably gagging into her peppy little scarf.
Jenni went home and with about 15 minutes left to spare, I raced through customs and made the flight just in time.
* * *
I walked onto the plane, nodding flustered hellos to the the stewardesses, and looking for my seat. It was dead pan. An uncomfortable silence filled cabin, broken by the wail of a woman rocking back and forth in her seat, frantically being hushed and soothed by a stewardess in the seat beside her. Yep. I'm going to be in that seat, I just know it.
There it was. 42 B. Smack dab next to our crying lady sitting in what should have been Jenni's seat. I will give it to her though, she looked kind of how I felt, so we would be in good company. I was quickly ushered to the galley space at the back (you know, the weird little backroom where all the trays of food live) where they explained to me that since there was an empty seat (THANKS GUYS) they would be flying a deportee back to her country and she was a leeeettle bit upset about it.
The next 4 hours were a little weird...Shar and I would chat a little and she would burst into tears...she was from the Philippines and was getting sent back to Germany...and was coming to the states to get married...(?!?)...she would fall asleep and awake in a fit of anger.
"YOU LIKE GUMMY BEARS?"
"Take them. Take them all. I don't need them now..."
"No really, it's fine...someone at home will want th-"
*Cue 5 bags of gummy candy on my lap in a variety of flavors.*
"Can I hold your hand?"
"I'm afraid...can I hold your hand?"
Aaaaand why not. So we did. We held hands for hours, I listened to the Mama Mia sound track, and ate my way through an entire bag of gummy bears. Easily one of the most bizarre moments of my life.
* * *
And then I was there, tired, blurry, and a little disoriented, but alive and well. And Jo was there with a Swedish licorice pop. Hi family!
Friday, August 9, 2013
I suppose I'm leaving today. To a little island off the coast of Sweden for a little while. And then to visit my Oma and Opa in a Deutche village called Lendsiedel...and with Jenni Husby no less.
I'm so ready for an adventure!
Saturday, July 27, 2013
WE DID IT!!! The Seafair Torchlight Run was conquered with a wonderful day, a wonderful team, a wonderful success.
Mostly I was dying with excitment at the fact that they closed down 99 and we got to run helter-skelter along the highway with the Sound to our left and the city to our right. Right along with 40,000 runners. It was specacular.
This is us. The champions.
Thursday, July 25, 2013
Apparently sailboats race around the Puget Sound every Thursday. Who knew? Markus's friend and coworker Geoff owns one of these very boats and was good enough to invite us along. Sailboat racing is a rare breed of competion...if you're in the lead you get to take home a trophy and a goodly amount of boatman prestige. If you're trailing everyone else by a good fathom or two, you get the best view of a hundred billowy sails meandering into the sunset. Clearly a win-win deal.
We belonged to the trailing-with-a-view cohort and it was lovely. Hot dogs and beer to follow. Ahoy!
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
So hey, let me tell you about this cool thing I'm doing.
Beth Buer (the giddy one in the middle with the braid) does incredible things with her time - besides working at Ground Speak, adventuring, and being hilarious, she volunteers at Operation Nightwatch, a shelter and support for the homeless in Seattle. She put together a 5k that includes sponsers, staff members, and homeless clients, and will be a part of the Seafair race this year. The goal? To tear down walls and build relationships in their place. We did several Saturday morning training runs along the Centenial Park trail downtown - much fun was had, much sweat was sweated, and many stories were shared. It has been such an honor to get to know these people, and be a part of such a great thing. Interested in being a part of things? Click here!
We're running this Saturday and I'm pretty dang excited.
"In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity."
Sunday, July 21, 2013
Saturday, July 20, 2013
Happy Birthday Boo!
You are 26 today. I have known you for 3 of those 26 years and it has been a treat. Thank you for being you - I'm not going to start typing out your many praises, aint nobody got time for that, but my goodness I love you!
(Ps. The Luau party was a hit.)
Friday, July 19, 2013
Thursday, July 18, 2013
Sometimes I babysit chitlins. Milla and Liam are two of these that I used to see on a regular basis before my grown up job came along. It was fun to hang out with them today and eat pizza and watch movies and also roam in their gigantic house full of views and books and glass deer heads.
Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Saturday, July 13, 2013
Thursday, July 11, 2013
Wrapped up in blankets and aided by a bag of gummy bears, Sarah, Michael, Jenni, and I settled down in a large field in Magnison Park to watch Moonrise Kingdom on a giant ballooning screen with hundreds of other Seattleites. It was cold, cozy, and kind of delicious. I can't wait for more!
To get a whole list of movies and locations, click here.
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Well these two are off for new adventures. In Portland. With a new job. And, oh yea, a BABY!
We had a farewell picnic for them at Gas Works today - BBQ sauce and cupcakes included, duh - and spent a very pleasant evening with a set of banana grams and several mugs of tea.
Seve and Clint have cheered Markus and I on from the very beginning - they are a huge blessing to us as a couple as well as to us individually. These kids know how to have a good time and we will miss them terribly!
It's lucky for them they have a big apartment.
Tuesday, July 9, 2013
Monday, July 8, 2013
In such a big way today.
Maybe because Markus just got back starry eyed from Japan? Maybe because I long to be out in the sun with nothing tugging at my time? Maybe because I want to be so overwhelmed with color and smells and people and views that all I can really do is to rest in these things and be in awe?
I'm getting out of town tomorrow. Just for a little bit.
Sunday, July 7, 2013
Saturday, July 6, 2013
The week of Bulthuis-family-fun-sans-most-of-the-Bulthuis' continues!
Today the lovely Ms. Rebecca Bishop (Markus's cousin) became Mrs. Henry Boykin and it was an honor to be there to witness their vows.
Jenny and I bonded. Clearly.
We took the Little's swimming and explored Olympia and the Capitol Building (and caused a ruckus when we flung phones/walked over/dropped metal rods on the roped off seal of Washington) before raising our cupcakes (and costume pieces) to the new Mr. and Mrs.
Friday, July 5, 2013
Yesterday I got to introduce my lovely girls to Markus's home town and also his sister-in-law and nieces!
It was wonderful to see Jenny and take Ada to the beach and cuddle with Ruby, and celebrate 'Murica with the Port Orchard gang. It was a colliding of two worlds a little, and I love that so much.
* * *
Ada is a riot.
Thursday, July 4, 2013
Happy Independence Day, America!
For as much complaining as we do, I am blessed to live here, to be welcome to voice my opinions, to be intigrated into a culture despite my background and where I'm from, and to cultivate an appreciation for community, freedom, and football. And also hotdogs.
Don't cue all the counter arguments, because I know there are many. But we sometimes do some of these things well, and for these things I am thankful.
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
And he is - Oh, Well! He is just himself, and I miss him, and miss him, and miss him. The whole world seems empty and aching. I hate the moonlight because it's beautiful and he isn'there to see it with me. But maybe you've loved somebody too, and you know? If you have, I don't need to explain; and if you havn't, I can't explain.
- Daddy Long Legs, Jean Webster
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Monday, July 1, 2013
Sunday, June 30, 2013
I spent my day with this girl today.
She's Chelsea, by the way, and she's living with us for the summer, making sure Olivia's room is kept safe while Livs is off doing cool sciency things in California. And also she's working with World Relief, learning how to paddle board, getting a tan, experiencing the beauty of Trader Joes, and living the sea-city coffee culture life.
We love her and would like to let it be known that we're planning on luring her back to Seattle after she graduates from Union University and Jackson, Tennessee.
4 hours at gasworks with the Seattle hippies, jazz bands, and sun was a fine choice. I would recommend it to anyone.
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Friday, June 28, 2013
*Photos by Danni Reaves
Today was the grand culmination of a million birthdays. And by a million I mean four. Alisa, Chris, Danni, and I all embraced our new years amid boisterous good cheer (see above photo) and sunshine. We had a Mexican feast and more people than we anticipated and more heat than Seattle ever dreamed possible (all good things) so we loaded up plates and sprawled out on the grass outside to eat, drink, and make merry.
Then we sauntered, en mass, over to gasworks for some Frisbee and for some burning of the energy and to watch the sun go down over a warm, sleepy Seattle.