Catching Rays in Barcelona & Waves in Biarritz

April 2019

Friends invited us to join them and a group of around twenty on a surf trip to Biarritz, France. The group ranged from beginners to professionals with us definitely falling on the way beginner side. Always up for adventure (even though surfing in the Atlantic in April sounded super cold to me) we were excited to join for a guaranteed fun week of great food and friends. With two weeks to play with for the boys’ spring break, we decided to start the trip with a stop in Barcelona to fill up on plenty of sangria and sunshine making our way to Biarritz via Bilbao.

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Starnberger See is a Must See

July 2020

Starnberger See is a gorgeous lake about thirty minutes south of Munich surrounded by charming towns, hiking trails and views of the Bavarian Alps. It is full of history being home to the Possenhofen Castle where Empress Elisabeth of Austria (Sisi) spent her childhood summers and well as where her cousin King Ludwig II took refuge on Rose Island, lived in Berg Castle and mysteriously drowned. After a few months in lockdown we were wanting a change of scenery not too far from home. Lake Starnberg looked to be a nice week away where we could take in the history, do a little hiking and spend lazy days on the shores of the lake.

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Beautiful Baden-Baden

September 2020

A friend sent a text asking if I would be up for a girls’ weekend away. Not even knowing where or when we were going I responded back with an almost immediate “absolutely”. Luckily Scott is super chill about me leaving for the weekend and the boys all love their “dude weekend” time together. They get a break, I get a break and everyone is happy. Within a few hours a WhatsApp group was formed and the date and place were decided. There are so many really cool places to go for a quick weekend away in Germany so it can be hard to choose. Baden-Baden was suggested as a beautiful spa town close to the French border and only a little over three hour drive. That pretty much checks all of the boxes for a perfect girls’ trip. We packed our weekender bags, way too many pairs of shoes, piled in the car and were on our way.

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Road Trippin’ through France & Italy

July 2020

We usually spend our summers back in the States. We visit family, catch up with friends and reconnect to our roots. When coronavirus hit and everything starting shutting down we realized that would not be a reality for us this year. The idea of not going home was a heavy thought. It’s hard being away from family and we all look forward to our time together. Within a couple of weeks of cancelling our tickets, the news broke that the European Union borders were planning on opening on June 15th. Best news ever…Summer 2020 might be ok after all. While we wouldn’t be able to go home, we had the opportunity to explore new parts of Europe and spend time with our boys which is becoming more and more precious the older they get. I threw myself into planning mode and within a couple of days had booked a two week road trip adventure through France and Italy crossing my fingers that the borders would stay open and we would all survive two weeks on the road together. Our adventure took us through Beaune, Sainte-Maxime, Castellane and the Gorges du Verdon in France and then back up through Italy stopping at Lake Como.

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Life as an Expat

Last week as I was sitting in my bra and underwear at the dermatologist’s office after being told to take my clothes off and wait for the doctor I started reflecting on how crazy our last two years has been and what has become normal to me that at first was so bizarre. Like sitting without any clothes on waiting for the doctor. Usually the doctor will be the one to tell you to take your clothes off while they are in the room no matter if you are at the gyno, dermatologist or your GP. While at first I was a bit shocked even though friends had warned me about the “process” I have now become used to it. While it is less awkward, I still get nervous on the drive and am usually in a full sweat by the time I am parked and walking in to the office. I’m sure the doctors are wondering “what the hell is wrong with her”! So many things we have experienced have pushed me way outside of my comfort zone and most I can laugh about at this point….well depending on the day.

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Three days in Amsterdam

May 2019

Two of my best girlfriends were visiting me for a little over a week and we decided to kick off our adventure in Amsterdam. KLM runs a great flight from Nuremberg direct to Amsterdam that leaves at 6:00AM (ok that’s not the great part) landing at 7:20 in Amsterdam in time for breakfast. The great part is that early flight delivered me to Amsterdam with a full day to play and I could meet my girls at the airport arriving on the red-eye from Chicago. Even with the haziness from our early and overnight flights the excitement of seeing each other for the first time in almost a year made us feel like giddy teens meeting unsupervised at the mall for the first time. We grabbed our bags, a taxi and headed into Amsterdam to check in to our hotel and start our day.

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The Magic of the Christmas Market Season

December 2019

The Christmas Markets in Europe capture the magic of Christmas like nothing else. There is pure sweetness and joy that is felt getting together with your family and friends, drinking Glühwein, listening to music and strolling the booths of homemade ornaments and goodies in the fairy tale like settings. It slows the season down and is a great reminder of what is truly important during the special time. There are a lot of things that Europeans do well and the Christmas Markets are something that they do with perfection. As an American, Christmas for me had become simultaneous with craziness. A mad rush of gift buying, more gift buying, stressing over gift buying and then feeling guilty over not enough gift buying. Needless to say, I had lost the magic of the season in my heart. Wandering the Christmas Markets here I feel like a child feeling the joy of Christmas for the first time. This past Christmas was even more special because I was able to share the markets with my Mom and Sister who were visiting from the States. Below is a list of the different markets that we visited: Erlangen, Nuremberg, Vienna, Regensburg and Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

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