Friday, August 30, 2013

Deutschland: Die ersten Tage

We made it to Germany! Both kids were angels during our trip and slept the entirety of our nearly 9 hour flight from Chicago to Copenhagen. One of the flight attendants talked with us after we got off the plane and said in his lovely Danish accent, “Sometimes they sleep, and sometimes they don’t. You are very fortunate.” Yes we were.

When we arrived in Stuttgart, one of our gate checked bags had been lost, but fortunately it wasn’t our stroller or travel crib, and it arrived promptly at our apartment the next day. We also had the wonderful advantage of Cody’s parents arriving in Stuttgart earlier that morning. I can’t tell you how amazing it was to have them meet us at the airport. They had already been to Reutlingen, found the seminary, and seen our room. They found a nearby grocery store, with the help of a sweet seminary student, and put some food in our fridge. So when they met us at the airport, they already knew exactly what bus to take and at what time, and we were on our way with ease. Wow, let me tell you. Having them here has made all the difference.

Jet lag has been rough, and it’s taken a concentrated effort on the part of all of us to get the kids back on schedule. Bruno is still waking up a couple hours after we put him to bed at night, thinking it’s time for supper or something like that, but last night it was much less extreme so I’m hoping that tonight will be a little more normal. 

Our apartment is little and cute, though still a bit sterile. I’m eagerly looking forward to getting some rugs to make our mauve-colored linoleum floor a bit more homey. The kitchen is quite possibly the tiniest I’ve ever seen, which is a bit of a bummer since I cook a lot. Our bed is also hilarious... an old futon that tips on my side if you sit too close to the edge. 

All in all we’re doing well, and adjusting to life here. We went to the Volkspark yesterday, which is this amazing, huge, and lovely park extremely close to our apartment. The playground is really beautiful, with a water system the kids can play with, a climbing wall, and a digger. This park also gave me my first successful conversation—in German!— with a grandmother who was babysitting her sweet 10 mo. old grandson. It was exactly the conversation I would have had with a mother or grandmother at a park in the U.S., and gave me a lot of confidence for future days.

Thank you so much for your prayers for us as we traveled and adjust to life here. We miss you all, so come visit!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Still for just a little while longer

Mornings in a farm house.

I am going to miss this. I am going to miss the wide open spaces that my childhood home offers to it’s grandchildren. I love that there are different rooms for my little ones to explore and be. Independently of the other, both kids spent some playtime in the “school room” this morning, with the sun streaming through the windows, and nothing to bother them. This big rig was Sebastian’s choice when I told him that he should play with something that he really liked since he wouldn’t get to play with Grandpa and Noni's toys for a long time. He is handling this move so beautifully, and sweetly. 

Moments like these are a thing unmatched. We’ll be back, sweet home, in just eleven short months.

P.S. As I prepare mentally for our long trip to Germany, I am bolstered by these words. I’ll be practicing these things, and praying a lot. Thanks, Jodi.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Cousin-babies (not mine)

There a lot of people that I love dearly whom I haven't been able to see in simply ages, but as we quickly approach our move, I can't help but be incredibly thankful that I got to meet these lovely ladies. I can't believe they'll be one-year-olds by the time I see them again! Love you, Molly & Annemarie! Be good to your mamas while I'm away.

Art with Aunt Bekah

When we went to Hillsdale a few weeks ago, Bekah really wanted to take Sebastian to Toasted Mud. This was his creation. Thanks, Aunt Bekah! Sebastian was so excited to eat his Marshmallows & Stars in it this morning.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Future teacher

Cody is back, a fact which is making me more and more thankful for each day I have with him. The distance was difficult, but I know that I benefited greatly both personally, and in regards to our marriage during the last 7 weeks apart. I expected that God had some big lessons in store for me, and he sure did. I've been trying hard to live each of these days with Cody very purposefully, holding onto the things I've learned, and seeking to implement them into life with my husband, instead of falling back into the ease of bad habits. So I'm enjoying these days, but very carefully.

In addition, being together again has helped me see all things I love about Cody so much more clearly. This picture of him giving a bunch of kids a nature lesson captures just one of those things.  Isn't that kid in the navy tee a cutie??!

Welcome home, honey.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

To students yet to come

Ich fühle mich langsam Crash, wie wir nur wenige Tage von Cody Rückkehr sind. Die Jungs sind krank, und Bruno nicht verarbeitet Krankheit gut, anscheinend, obwohl ich froh, dass meine Erfahrung mit ihm krank ist begrenzt bin. Ich habe schon brachte ihn zu Bett zweimal an diesem Abend, so dass wir hängen an meine Eltern für eine kleine Weile, und ich dachte, ich würde meine Schwester Computer verwenden, um diese süßen Bilder Aufmachungen aus unserer Woche in Hillsdale. Ich nahm sie speziell für Cody, da dies Amphitheater war der Senior-Klasse Geschenk an die Hochschule das Jahr, dass er der Präsident der Senior-Klasse war. Ich habe immer über ihn lustig machen, wie stolz er ist es. Danach gingen wir zum Doc zu besuchen. Bevor wir in seinem Büro angekommen, erinnerte wir Sebastian, dass er nach ihm benannt wurde ... dass sein Name ist Sebastian THOMAS Webb Strecker ... und das ist, weil er auf Doc Geburtstag geboren wurde ... und sein Name ist Thomas! Sie erhalten das Bild. Nun weißt du nicht, dass Doc Sebastian fragte: "Wie ist dein Name?" Und Sebastian pflichtgemäß antwortete: "Sebastian Webb Strecker." Wah Wah ... nächste Mal, Seb.

I feel myself beginning to crash, as we're mere days from Cody's return. The boys are sick, and Bruno does not handle sickness well, apparently, though I'm glad my experience with him being sick is limited. I've already put him to bed twice this evening, so we're hanging out at my parents for a little while, and I thought I'd use my sister's computer to put these darling pictures up from our week in Hillsdale. I took them specifically for Cody, as this amphitheater was the senior class gift to the college the year that he was the president of the senior class. I always make fun of him for how proud he is of it. Afterwards, we went to visit Doc. Before we arrived at his office, we reminded Sebastian that he was named after him... that his name is Sebastian THOMAS Webb Strecker... and that is because he was born on Doc's birthday... and his name is Thomas! You get the picture. Well don't you know that Doc asked Sebastian, "What's your name?" And Sebastian dutifully responded, "Sebastian Webb Strecker." Wah wah... next time, Seb. Oh this dear little boy of ours.

Monday, August 12, 2013


natural born prankster?

natural born photographer, too.

lots of "i love lucy" these days. also thinking it's a crime that we didn't name bruno orson instead. he looks just like orson welles, no?

likes to play "baby" a lot these days.

you just try to take this kid's blankie... 

standing like his mama.

"17 rocks"

Probleme mit meinem Computer haben sich weiter, so dass es fast unmöglich, meinen Blog zu aktualisieren. Es ist in Ordnung, obwohl gewesen, und ich habe Zeit genossen weg von meinem Computer-Bildschirm. Leben noch passiert und ist immer noch schön, auch wenn man nicht darüber bloggen.

Wir sind am 7. Wochen auseinander von Cody los und sind enorm aufgeregt, um ihn nach Hause zu begrüßen späten Donnerstagabend. Ich kann es kaum glauben, wir haben es geschafft, aber froh, dass wir aufhören können "es" bald. Ich bin damit beschäftigt, Listen und abgehakt, und haben versucht, jeden Aspekt unseres Umzug nach Deutschland auf dem 26. dieses Monats zu skizzieren. Es ist bald und vollständig bittersüß. Wir sind begeistert, dieses neue Kapitel beginnt, und wieder beigelegt werden, aber das fühlt sich an wie zu Hause jetzt auch, und wir werden unser Leben hier vermissen über dem Melkstand. Das Leben in Deutschland wird ein harter, wenn auch spannend, Anpassung für uns alle.


Troubles with my computer have continued (although I'll finally have it back in a couple days!), making it nearly impossible to update my blog. It's been alright though, and I've enjoyed time away from my computer screen. Life still happens and is still lovely even when you can't blog about it.

We are going on 7 weeks apart from Cody, and are tremendously excited to welcome him home late Thursday night. I can hardly believe we've made it, but glad we can stop "making it" soon. I am busy getting lists made and checked off, and have been trying to outline every aspect of our move to Germany on the 26th of this month. It's coming quickly, and is completely bittersweet. We are thrilled to be starting this new chapter, and to be settled again, but this feels like home now, too, and we'll miss our lives here above the milking parlor. Life in Germany will be a tough, albeit exciting, adjustment for all of us.