July 31, 2009

Today's Post Brought to You by the Letter "C"

Claire and Emily enjoying an evening tow.

There is nary a shade of green anywhere on this map.

You may remember this scene from last December. I've recently begun my three-week no-iodine diet in preparation for a much smaller dose of radiactive iodine and a body scan. Waiting for my insurance company to approve an injection that will allow me to skip the hypothyroid state altogether this time.

This page for the month of August now resides in my kitchen.

Ben and Aidan giving Claire the relief of a good squirt-down.

The album I made for my brand new nephew Brian.

The debate continues as to whether we'll stay or go.

July 27, 2009

... And It Was Good

I can't tell you the sheer giddiness I've been feeling lately as I sit at my desk, surrounded by art supplies and waiting for creative mojo to strike. I made this layout commemorating the loss of Ben's first tooth to grease the gears and remember my supplies. It felt so good.

She came home, she scrapbooked and it was good.

July 26, 2009

The Haircut

Me: Ben, are you ready for a haircut?

Ben: Yes, but I kind of like my hair like this, it looks cute in the mirror. And it's a very good way to attract a female.

Then later,
Ben: This hair style does not suit my voice.

I'm thinking he's cute either way, but I kind of liked the long hair too.

July 23, 2009

On the Way Home

Inside the old walls of the beautiful city of Nuremburg, Germany

A day spent playing at Playmobil Fun Park

New orchids

An awesome luge run in the Alps

An amazing view of the Alps from the top of the gondola

Castles nestled in the mountains above the city of Fussen, Germany

The breath-taking city of Fussen

Driving through the Alps with her newly pierced ears

The highest waterfall in Germany in the city of Triberg

The largest cuckoo clock in the world near Triberg

Old castle ruins at St. Goar, Germany

A boat trip down the Rhine River, Bacharach to St. Goar

Strolling in Bacharach, Germany

July 22, 2009


Here's the newest member of the Spence family, little Brian Arturo, born to my brother Zach and sister-in-law Laura on Saturday. Hello little nephew. I hope I get to meet you in person soon. I'm busy crafting a present for you....

Got a little scrapbooking retail therapy and a yummy hamburger with my friend Shawna yesterday. I was so aware of the distinct smell of a scrapbook store, a smell I had really missed but didn't know it until I walked in and took a deep breath. My head is swimming with inspiration this morning while I do chores and prepare for an afternoon visit with my friend Jill.

Hot, hot, hot here and oh so very dry. I had forgotten how dry the Palouse can be in the summertime... hoping for a boat ride to the dunes for some swimming soon.

July 17, 2009

Hey It's Good To Be Back Home Again

It's amazing to me that you can wake up in the morning in a hotel in Frankfurt and make it home to your own bed half-way around the world that night. When we left the Palouse it was all snow and darkness; now the wheat is ripening and summer is full-on. I missed a whole season here and although I realize very well that life went on without me, I half-heartedly expected everything to be the same. It's a very surreal experience to walk back into your life and pick up where you left off, like just yesterday you weren't having another life in another country.

All in all we're settling in just fine. The kids have touched every toy they have and are both deeply engrossed in playdates this afternoon with their respective friends. Mark made it back to work today and I've been spending time getting reaquainted with my home. Not only did I have to unpack from Europe, but I also had to unpack everyone's summer clothes that were still in storage because of the aforementioned snow. I'm taking it nice and slow and giving myself until Monday before I have to do anything that requires brain power. And I hope to share some photos and stories of our last road trip in Bavaria and the Rhine Valley real soon.

A big shout out to my brother Zach and his wife Laura, who are at the hospital right now giving birth to their first child. We're waiting to welcome our newest nephew into the world. Good luck guys!

July 6, 2009

Happy Birthday Ben

Ben turned seven today. Can you believe it? Lest you think this is how long his hair has grown since we've been here, I'll put your mind at ease; this is one of the getups for a birthday party game we had this afternoon. Then we ate Joey's Pizza, had cake and ice cream, opened presents and wound up the evening at the park. He's good and tired now, snuggled in bed and working on new Transformers.

This is our last evening in Jena. Tomorrow we are leaving for a tour of southern Germany and the Rhine Valley before heading to Frankfurt and flying home next Wednesday. We'll be incommunicado until we reach the farm. Leaving is bittersweet of course; we are all looking forward to seeing American soil again, but we'll miss our new friends and the small life we've built here. There are many things I'll miss here, and many I won't, but that's a post for another day. See you all stateside.

July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July America

Not a celebration here of course, but we're making our own hosting Mark's lab group for a barbecue in the park tonight. There won't be fireworks, but there's some sort of summer festival going on downtown and the music has been great. Maybe we'll dance a little jig.

I'm changing up the blog for summer... so excited about returning to my scraproom.

July 2, 2009


Outside my window... thunderclouds are gathering.
I am thinking... I'll go to the bead store this afternoon.
I am thankful for... compassion.
From the kitchen... the smells of simmering chicken for tonight's dinner.
I am wearing... a peasant skirt and a white t-shirt, no shoes.
I am creating... the last pages of my scrapbooks of our trip here.
I am going... to meet Mark and Claire at the train station soon.
I am reading... The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse by Louise Erdrich.
I am hoping... for rain to cool down the air.
I am hearing... the sounds of Transformers battling with Pokemon.
Around the house... little piles of things are gathered to be packed.
One of my favorite things... good German bread.
A few plans for the rest of the week... a 4th of July party on Saturday, American style, and a little boy's 7th birthday party, complete with vanilla cake and blue frosting.