November 19, 2011

Getting Ready

Well we're almost ready for our new trip. I finally packed. Almost everything, just a few small things left to pack. Today Danny found (miraculously) a wireless Apple keyboard at the PX so that I can connect my iPad to it and blog from my iPad on this nifty Blogger app. I'll be able to blog daily from the trip. Even if at times I can't publish it (writing on the bus or ship), I'll be able to do it as soon as we get to the hotel. I'm even going to attempt to write a little something from the cafe that JK Rowling wrote Harry Potter at. Maybe a short story. We'll see. But it's much easier than writing on my little tiny keyboard on here with my big fingers. I can also write on my iPhone if I so choose. Or anything with bluetooth capability. Ah, the joys of technology.

But yes. I'm finally getting super nervous. My house needs to be cleaned...deeply cleaned. And it hasn't been done. Things need to be put up so the cat can't knock them down for the dogs to eat. I also need to get my walk-in closet - errrrrr - spare bedroom cleaned up because we have a house inspection coming up the week after we get back. That's not terribly stressful, I have some time...except that Danny leaves for a week 2 hours after we get back from our trip. No kidding, 2 hours. It's cute they're waiting for him. Hehe. Anyways. I'm starting to get stressed but trying not to.

I think that in Amsterdam we're going to hit up the Anne Frank House. I wanted to go to Madame Tous...the wax museum (instead of slaughtering the spelling I gave up) but it's pretty pricey. So I think that we'll do the Anne Frank house and maybe one of the other museums, one of the art museums. No, we won't be (intentionally) going to the Red Light District or to any "coffee shops". Taylor will be with us and we're going to be on an MWR trip, though Danny would never participate in "coffee", I never would on an MWR trip....I'm not sure I would at all, but especially not there. I'm not as excited about Amsterdam as I think I would be in the Spring. I <3 Tulips. But it'll still be nice.

I'm beyond ready for Scotland and the crazy weather...the snow/rain/shine...whatever happens, I'm ready. The castle. I still haven't been into or seen a castle up close so seeing one in Scotland for my first one...well, I'm okay with that. You know, Hogwarts is in Scotland. Special.

So I cut my hair more, it's a very pixie now. I'm coloring it tomorrow. I think I'd do it tonight but I'm just too tired...packing took 2 hours and was intense. Danny is going to work on the Xterra and I'm cleaning and hairing. That's a word, shhhhhh.

Okay I'm ending this...I really just wanted to play with the new keyboard. That was the whole point of this blog. And it is accomplished. Hope everyone has a lovely weekend!!!


October 27, 2011

Traveling, finally

It's been a long long while since I've posted a blog.  I guess it's time since things are happening.

I've finished another semester in school, Fall I.  I was going to take a class in Fall II but then we got word that Danny was going on another all expenses paid 12 month trip.  You know, the kind he goes on alone.  Well not alone, but without Taylor and I.  Courtesy of Uncle Sam.  So because of that trip, I decided I was going to take Fall II off so that I could get stuff done around the house plus get some traveling done.  I'll start back up in Spring and hit it like crazy.  I got an A in my Sociology class and a B in my English class.  I'm glad I decided to major in Sociology since clearly I'm better at Sociology than English.

We have been a few places, we went to Walhalla in Regensberg and we also went to Munich for Oktoberfest.  Uh, Oktoberfest...RIDICULOUS.  It was insane and amazing and crazy and WHOA.  But it was awesome and I'd like to go again before we head out of this country.  I'd just like to go without Taylor this time.  I'm glad she got to go, now she will always be able to say that.  That's pretty cool.

Today I just bought our way onto a a bus headed to Karlovy Vary, Czech.  It's an MWR trip.  It's going to be pretty great.  Karlovy Vary is a "spa" city.  For some reason (cause I'm goofy I guess) it's kind of reminding me of Manitou Springs.  I know it's not going to be like that, not really, but there are natural springs all over the place there that have healing properties.  And that's what the founding purposes of Manitou Springs were.  Rachel-y-poo is going to head on this trip with us...sooo exciting.  Taylor is excited too.  I'm mostly excited she gets to do stuff like this.  I'm pretty excited *I* get to do stuff like this too, I'm not gonna lie.  Karlovy Vary Wiki and Official Karlovy Vary.  Carlsbad Caverns and Carlsbad, CA was named after Karlovy.  That's pretty awesome.  This trip also stops in Cheb, I'm pretty excited about that.  Cheb is shopping.  They have crystal and pottery and...stuff.  We're talking faux everything.  I plan on getting some awesome Louis Vuitton bags.  Or at least one.  I'm also collecting "city" bags.  It started when I went to Vegas with Alisha, I got a purse that says "Las Vegas" all over it.  Then when we went to Regensberg I got one.  Now I have one that says Munchen and Oktoberfest all over it.  I hope I can find a Karlovy Vary one.  It's pretty common tourist ware these days.

Our next trip is for the following day.  I'm going to be very sore (I'm not a pro walker, our 8 miles in Munich almost killed me).  But it's to Prague.  Oh, Prague...Praha...yes.  I've wanted to go to Prague since we found out we were coming to Germany.  So finally, we've got our tickets to Prague.  Oh yes.  It's happening.  I'm sure most of you have heard of Prague, know of Prague.  It's the capital of Czech.  If you watch NCIS: LA, they just went there to save Hetti.  Uh huh.  Prague Wiki and Prague Official.  It's going to be cold but oh so amazing.  I have a feeling it will live up to my expectations.

Danny filled out a leave form a while back for another trip, a trip taking place over Thanksgiving.  We weren't sure it was going to get approved cause the CO said no leave aside from block leave would get approved but it was really only 1 day off over the normal days they'd have off.  So at the last minute (for the trip) he approved it.  WOO HOO!! So I got our tickets (they're not really tickets, I keep saying that but it's more confirmation #) for the next trip.  The one I'm most excited about for now.  Drum roll please..........let's see if you can guess from my pictures.

Step #1
Step #2
Step #3
Step #4

 Soooooo did you guess???? Okay so we're getting on a bus and going to Amsterdam, spending the day there then getting on a mini-cruise/ferry (16 hours) to New Castle, England.  From there we'll get back on the bus and spend just a little bit of time driving to..........Edinburgh, Scotland! Score!! We'll spend 2 days in Edinburgh, then repeat the trip back to Amsterdam where we'll have 1/2 a free day in Amsterdam.  But uh, back to Scotland.  WHAT?!?! Yeah.  Scotland.  I'll be in Scotland for Thanksgiving.  Uh...yeah.  And I'll have gotten there by boat.  Kinda like the Mayflower.  Even though I already told Danny that since it's cold we're gonna hit an iceberg and I'm Rose and he's Jack.  (I'm not nice and he can't swim).  We're going to see the castle in the picture above, it's part of the tour.  The next day is free day, to explore whatever we want.  I need to get a book on Edinburgh.  And Amsterdam cause both days there are free days.  So I totally need books.  I'm going from having been to USA, Mexico, and Germany to including Czech, Netherlands, England and Scotland all in one month.  Uh...yes, this is what being stationed in Germany is all about.

The next planned trip is London England in March.  Rachel, Taylor and I.  I'm hoping to talk Rachel into seeing Wicked on one of our free nights.  Mmmhmmm.  I hope there will be a Paris trip this spring too.  Then I'll just need Greece, Spain, Italy and Poland and my life will be complete.

Oh, and Canada.

August 15, 2011

The many many holidays of Germany

I'm a bit of a religion buff.  I like to learn about religions.  As a matter of fact, the Fall 2 semester at UMUC has a Philosophy class coming up that teaches about multiple current religions and I'm taking it.  I need another Philosophy class so it's win-win.  Every time I find out about a new religion, obscure or not, I do tons of research and find out as much as possible.  One of my favorites is Catholicism because it's a very old religion and there is a lot of information out there...and there is a lot of information HERE.  Plus Laura's Mom, St. Bab's, supports my research and sends me books and Saint cards and Rosaries...and I think she prays for my conversion (which after this last book, sounds pretty hard...and would totally have to wait til after I got back Stateside to put any serious thought into lol).

So There seems to be a State (Bavaria) wide holiday pretty frequently here, and I think almost every holiday...if not every one, is related to Catholicism.  At least 95%.  Today's holiday, August 15th, is Assumption Day or Mariä Himmelfahrt.  Basically it celebrates the day the the Virgin Mary's earthly life was over and she ascended to heaven.  They (according to the text I'm reading) very literally mean that her tomb was empty, that her actual physical body left the Earth and went up to heaven, not in the way that you or I (general sweeping) would say someone went to heaven.  Of course, there is also room to believe that she hadn't died before she went to heaven, according to some teaching and some of what I'm reading....that was according to Pope Pius XII.  So yes.

I recently finished a book called "No Turning Back : A Witness To Mercy".  It's by Father Donald Calloway, MIC.
No Turning Back  
 It was about this guy, who as you can kind of guess by the cover, is a Priest...and he surfs.  Just a little background, he was a Navy brat that got into mucho trouble, got kicked out of Japan, got into drugs and alcohol pretty bad...and then became a Priest.  It's a story of redemption.  Which a lot of stories are.  Beauty and the Beast? Redemption.  Angel? Redemption.  You get it.  This just has a twist.  It was a good book and I learned a lot about the conversion process as well as a lot about Mary and what it takes to become a Priest, because I honestly didn't know much about that process.

So yes.  That is what I've been reading lately.  St. Babs sent it to me after my TWLOHA post and I am grateful, I loved it.  Other than reading and researching every German Holiday, all I have been doing is...nothing.  Because I can't do much.  My breathing/heart issues aren't getting better.  Sometimes it feels like they're getting worse.  I have my appointment to get my referral to Weiden for the CT scan tomorrow though, so hopefully that's soon (I think they said the 17th but then I thought that's what I was doing tomorrow so then I just got confused).  I hate CT scans but the last time I had one I had a concussion and it kinda tripped me out so I'm sure this one will be less scary.  I think I need to be hospitalized and have heart monitors hooked up to me for more than 5 minutes.  I think they need to monitor it for a little while so that they can catch it when it does the speed up really really fast then stop skip a beat or two then go normal again does that about once a day now.  But on the same hand, I can't be hospitalized.  Taylor isn't in school, so there isn't anyone to take care of her, and even when she is in school, there's no one to watch her after school.  Danny's unit is NOT the most accommodating.  I get this feeling that if there is something seriously wrong with me (this is crazy Bri talking) I will die before it gets fixed because there's just simply no one that can help with Taylor and the dogs etc, especially when Danny's in the field at the end of the month...I certainly couldn't be in the hospital then.  Ugh.

So that's the "I'm still sick" rant/update.  I just tried to do a few things around the house, it didn't work out so well, I can't breathe now.  So I sat down to try to catch my breath and now I feel like I am going to pass out from exhaustion.  I woke up at 10! It's 3:30! I should not be tired.  Lack of oxygen screws with ya man.

Double ugh.  Later y'all :) Here's hoping for Weiden!

July 23, 2011

To Write Love On Her Arms

Please be patient with me, whatever illness this is seems to be messing with my ability to think.  I am sure this is not the proper time to blog but if I don't now, I'm sure I never will.  I think this is a wicked head cold but I have body aches and we'll see what it turns into.  Looks like I had a good year where I never got sick and now I'm back to being sick all the time.  Joy.

I'm sure that many of you have heard of To Write Love On Her Arms before.  I'm just a tad behind.  No only because I'm in Germany, because I had seen a few things before I left Colorado.  Mostly at Hot Topic.  It seems like something I should have been aware of before, because it's definitely something that I can see myself being passionate about.  Something I already am passionate about, but now it's something that has a Non-Profit behind it.  I can get a rubber bracelet to wear and a shirt, so people can ask me questions and I can get into it.

For those of you that haven't heard of it, let me explain a little bit.

To Write Love On Her Arms, as I mentioned, is a Non-Profit.  The mission is to provide hope for people dealing with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicidal thoughts.  They have all sorts of resources such as social media outlets, book suggestions, helplines, music festivals...there are stars and musical acts that support TWLOHA, which gives any Non-Profit "street cred" with the youth.  They are not a helpline themselves.  They are basically a resource to get help, but they have a LOT of information and they offer a lot of positive support.  I would LOVE to work for a company like that one day.  LOVE.  Talk about a dream.

To Write Love On Her Arms

I am pretty outspoken about people needing to seek help if they feel their lives even tipping the scale of out-of-control.  What I haven't been, lately, and not on this watching out for your kids.  Watching out for your nieces/nephews.  Not all behavior that appears dangerous is.  But there are a lot of things to watch out for, some of which is listed on that website.  I am going to cite it here.  Then I will tell my story.  Part of TWLOHA is big on each story being important.

We've gone over the fact that I spent some time in a mental health facility during the 15month deployment, that I have PTSD and I think I've mentioned Bi-Polar Disorder.  I have General Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder and OCD.  The reason I am mentioning these things is because I am not ashamed.  I don't feel like it's something I need to hide.  I don't think that there is any reason for anyone to judge me.  The first, PTSD...well there's nothing to be done about that.  I was probably pre-disposed because of the BPD to that, maybe, or maybe it's because ANYONE that went through what I did would have PTSD.  Who knows.  But that is what it is.  And BPD is a chemical imbalance, just like type 1 diabetes.  Sure, I'll take a pill for the rest of my life, just like someone else would need an insulin injection.  It doesn't make me any less or a human being, it just means I need to be on top of it and aware of my situation.  The Anxieties and OCD come from the PTSD situation.  And no, I won't go into that.  Not because I'm ashamed, because I'm not.  But frankly, it's none of your business.  If you know me well enough, you know.  If you don't, you don't need to know.  I've been married for 10 years and he only just found out.  So that's how it goes.  Onto the informational portion of the blog.

Quick Numbers

121 million people worldwide suffer from depression. (World Health Organization)
 18 million of these cases are happening in the United States. (The National Institute of Mental Health)
Between 20% and 50% of children and teens struggling with depression have a family history of this struggle and the offspring of depressed parents are more than three times as likely to suffer from depression. (U.S. Surgeon General's Survey, 1999)
Depression often co-occurs with anxiety disorders and substance abuse, with 30% of teens with depression also developing a substance abuse problem. (NIMH)
 2/3 of those suffering from depression never seek treatment.
Untreated depression is the number one cause of suicide, and suicide is the third leading cause of death among teenagers. (NIMH)

About Depression

According to the World Health Organization, depression is one of the leading causes of disability, with approximately 121 million people suffering with depression worldwide. The National Institute of Mental Health states that approximately 18 million people suffer from depression in America alone. Depression does not discriminate across age, race, gender, or class. Among teenagers it is estimated that 20 percent will suffer from depression at some point by the time they reach adulthood. There are also as many as 8.3 percent of teens suffering from depression for at least a year at a time, compared to 5.3 percent of the general population

About Addiction   

The stigma associated with addiction is one of the greatest challenges to recovery. Each year only 10 percent of Americans who need alcohol and drug treatment get the help they need. Yet with treatment and support, people with addiction can lead productive lives.
The Addiction Project has benefited from contributions by the leading experts in the field of addiction. On their website you can find articles written by experts featured in the HBO Addiction series.

About Self-Injury

While not always the case, often untreated depression and other struggles lead to unhealthy ways in which we try and deal with the hurt and pain we are feeling. We try and find anything that we can do to take away the hurt, painful feelings, or negative thoughts we are experiencing. Often the things that we turn to seem to help at first, appearing to provide some of the relief that we need so badly. But, even though they may seem like they help, often they are unhealthy themselves, eventually becoming even greater struggles like addictions such as drugs, alcohol, eating disorders, or self-injury.
Self-injury remained very much a mystery until 1996 when Princess Diana revealed that she had struggled with it. It has become much more visible in society within the last ten years. Self-injury is also termed self-mutilation, self-harm, or self-abuse. It can be defined as the deliberate, repetitive, impulsive, non-lethal harming of one’s self, including but not limited to;
      1) cutting
            2) burning
            3) picking or interfering with wound healing
            4) infecting oneself
            5) punching/hitting self or objects
            6) inserting objects in to skin
            7 )bruising or breaking bones and
            8) some forms of hair pulling
While these behaviors pose serious risks, they may be symptoms of a problem that can be treated.
Experts estimate that 4% of the population struggle with self-injury. It has the same occurrence between males and females, even though in popular culture it can appear to be more prevalent among girls.
• Emptiness
• Inability to understand or express feelings
• Loneliness
• Fear
• Past Abuse
• Depression
Self-injury, like many addictions, is often a coping mechanism to deal with some manner of internal pain, many who struggle with it also struggle with other issues such as eating disorders and alcohol and drug abuse. While self-injury may be someone’s way to cope with or relieve painful or hard-to-express feelings and is generally NOT a suicide attempt, relief is always temporary, and usually only perpetuates a destructive cycle that continues the struggle. This cycle often means that those who do not get help can become more depressed and shameful, adding to the pain and need for relief, thus perpetuating the cycle.
While self-injury may not be about attempting suicide, the damage done while harming oneself always carries the risk of inflicting serious, and even lethal, regardless of whether suicide is intended or not. The continued cycle of addiction and self-harm, as in substance abuse and other eating disorders, can have a destructive effect on one’s health both physically and mentally, and the struggles can worsen over time without treatment.
(SAFE alternatives -
Self-injury, like alcohol and drug abuse and eating disorders, is addictive, and thus not something that is easy to simply stop. However, while all addictions are very difficult to overcome, help and treatment are out there and available, and recovery and freedom are possible.We believe this is true whether someone’s struggles may be self injury, depression, drugs and alcohol, body image issues, sexual addiction, or other areas of brokenness.
Research shows that those who seek professional help and therapy have a very good chance of recovery, and finding relief from symptoms such as depression and anxiety as well as others. (APA, 1998)

About Suicide

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that each year approximately one million people die from suicide, which represents a global mortality rate of 16 people per 100,000 or one death every 40 seconds. It is predicted that by 2020 the rate of death will increase to one every 20 seconds.
The WHO further reports that:
In the last 45 years suicide rates have increased by 60% worldwide. Suicide is now among the three leading causes of death among those aged 15-44 (male and female). Suicide attempts are twenty times more frequent than completed suicides.
Although suicide rates have traditionally been highest amongst elderly males, rates among young people have been increasing to such an extent that they are now the group at highest risk in a third of all countries.
Mental health disorders (particularly depression and substance abuse) are associated with more than 90% of all cases of suicide.
Suicide results from many complex sociocultural factors and is more likely to occur during periods of socioeconomic, family and individual crisis (e.g. loss of a loved one, unemployment, struggling with sexual orientation, difficulties with developing one's identity, disassociation from one's community or other social/belief group).
The WHO also states that:
In Europe, particularly Eastern Europe, the highest suicide rates are reported for both men and women.
The Eastern Mediterranean Region and Central Asia republics have the lowest suicide rates.
Nearly 30% of all suicides worldwide occur in India and China.
Suicides globally by age are as follows: 55% are aged between 15 to 44 years and 45% are aged 45 years and over.
Youth suicide is increasing at the greatest rate.
In the US, the Center of Disease Control and Prevention reports that:
Overall, suicide is the eleventh leading cause of death for all US Americans, and is the third leading cause of death for young people 15-24 years.
Although suicide is a serious problem among the young and adults, death rates continue to be highest among older adults ages 65 years and over.
Males are four times more likely to die from suicide than are females. However, females are more likely to attempt suicide than are males.
Suicide within minority groups
Research indicates that suicide rates appear to be increasing within native and indigenous populations such as the Native Americans in the United States and Alaska, and the Aboriginal and Torres Straight Island Peoples in Australia and New Zealand.
Suicide rates within migrant communities such as African and East Asian Americans or the Black British community are also of growing concern. Statistics show a rise but in some countries it can be difficult to calculate. For example, in the UK the place of birth is recorded on the death certificate, not ethnicity, therefore reducing data on suicides amongst minority groups.  -

So there is the info.  Now my story.  I don't have any history of traditional addiction.  My history of depression goes back as far as I can remember.  My main story involves self-injury.  I am a cutter.  I say "I am a cutter" because this, for me, is like being an addict, or like being an alcoholic.  It doesn't go away.  I haven't cut in nearly a year.  Or a little over a year.  The lines blur.  But it stands, it's been a while.  But I am still a cutter.  At 30 years old.  This doesn't just happen with 13 year old "Emo" kids trying to fit in.  I wasn't Emo the first time I cut.  Actually, my friends and I...we used to beat up the Emo kids.  True story.  Whoops.  I was 15 the first time I cut.  There was an endorphin rush and then the gratification of the pain that replaced the emotion.  I did get caught, not by my Mom but by a friend.  He got mad at me, yelled at me, I promised not to do it again.  Of course I did.  I just got more careful about hiding it.  But I never really was that careful.  I got caught several times, sometimes by my Mom.  But she just didn't know what to do.  Back then, the mid 90's, there just wasn't a lot of information out there.  We didn't have insurance, so that meant no therapy.  There just weren't options.  So she cried and begged, and I got better at hiding.  I was still a very highly functional person.  And I didn't really cut myself much as long as I was happy.  But my happiness depended on others, primarily my boyfriend.  I was pretty dependent on him.  Once he and I split for good...self-injury got worse and worse.  We had been together for 2 years.  The next boy I was with, I stopped for a while.  The pattern repeated.  It got to the point where by the time I reached adulthood I had literally thousands of scars.

When I went to the facility I had 300 cuts, from wrist to shoulder.  From knee to thigh, 100.  The tops of my breasts, several.  I was covered.  When I went into the hospital, good ol' Evans, the Emergency Room Doctor said, "You are a cutter, you won't kill yourself." and tried to send me home.  She said, "See your PCM Monday.  They will decide if you need to be admitted somewhere for long term."  I was shocked.  Flabbergasted even.  I said, "I wasn't planning on cutting myself to death.  I was going to take all of these pills.  But I will not be here Monday.  That's fine." I lifted my purse and shook the bag...I had a lot of pills.  And I stormed out of the ER.  I was seeing red, literally.  The friends that had taken me to the ER were trying to talk to the DR, trying to see what was even going on.  An EMT got into his personal vehicle to chase me down.  My plan, cause I was completely sane, was to go into the hills behind Evans, take all the pills, and let the Coyotes eat me.  Circle of life or something.  Again, completely sane, I know.  So the EMT pulls up in this Jeep and says, "They called the MPs.  You can't leave without signing the papers when you're in there for a case like this.  If the MP's find you, they will not be nice.  If I bring you back in things will go much better." I stood there for a minute and saw flashing lights, heard sirens...and got into the Jeep.  We sat there for a minute till the MP trucks sped past us, then we turned around and went back to Evans.  I told him that I would not see that Doctor again, told him what she said to me, and he said he understood and he wouldn't leave me.  He was off duty, but he wouldn't leave me.  So we went back in.  He stood in the corner while the MP's frisked me and searched my bag, he wouldn't let the Dr anywhere near me.  He told her I didn't want to see her again, and to send someone else in.  He personally drew my blood (they have to check for recreational drug use, that sends you to a different place)...then he drove me in his Jeep and stayed with me until I was fully checked in, at 4am.  I can tell you my life changed from the moment I got into his Jeep the first time.

People need a story like that.  That's not all of my story, but this is long enough.  I will continue later, I'm sure.  But for now, this is long enough.

As I said, this is something I'm passionate about.

July 6, 2011

St. Barbara and Barbaraberg

From: translated by GOOGLE TRANSLATE

The chapel of St. Barbara
Closely connected with the history of the monastery Speinshart is the nearby Barbara Berg. Between 1992 and 1995 excavations took place there, which brought a new insight into the history of this fabled mountain. Several reports of handing down of the sunken city Mirga. Perhaps these stories because of skeletal remains have been created on Barbara Berg, who remembered the domestic growers of giants. Already since 1910 we dubbed the mountain to an old Slavic Barbara worship. Have confirmed this assumption is ultimately the findings mentioned in the excavation period, as one could examine a total of 161 Slavic tombs and archaeological record.

These excavations were also found the foundations of a first stone church on the mountain Barbara. By the year 1000 there arose a hall. The Barbara patronage that flourished here quickly became a cult Barbara, was the church but probably not until the 13th or 14 Century, assigned as a saint before she was not really known in German speaking countries.
As "capella sancte Barbara in monte" the church in a visitation log is first mentioned in writing in 1508. At that time there was probably already the essence of Barbara's pilgrimage, for whose existence there in the 14th Century is evidence.
With the secularization of the monastery in 1557 first heard the pilgrimage to the mountain Barbara. It was not until 1661, after returning from the Norbertine canons Steingaden, the parish priest of Kemnath to rebuild the chapel with the miraculous image has sought late Gothic. It involved extensive repair work. The ruinous nave was given a new roof and new interior wooden benches built for about 120 pilgrims. A completed house Messner, the revived pilgrimage site, which now became one of the main sources of income of the monastery Speinshart.
The flourishing of the baroque pilgrimage being suggested by I. Abt Dominkus Lieblein it to build a new building. The idea for this measure had been his predecessor, Abbot Otto Peißner. Father Hugo Strauss took over the planning and construction management of the construction project began in 1741. The cross-shaped building, erected, was designed in the Rococo style. The interior decoration Ulrich Lambeck took over as a plasterer and a painter Michael Wild. Jacob Steinlen, who created convent carpenter, together with the sculptor Franz Xaver Amberger Schlott the altars. Completed was the new sanctuary until 1759th A fire in the monastery made ​​a dehydration necessary for financial reasons. From this church is now only received the facade. It is flanked on either side of each with a two-storey house. These houses served as a guest inn for pilgrims and as the summer residence of the Fathers of Speinshart.
With the secularization of the expiration of the rococo jewel Barbara began on the mountain. The interiors were auctioned off and the church itself - after the sale to the barons of Malsen - turned into a barn.
Damage in the roof work of the Church had the 1888 demolition of the entire central region, including the cupola of the church order. The remaining buildings were agricultural outbuildings. To make matters worse hit 1914 also added to the flash and the ruins of more widespread damage.
The Munich-based canon Prelate Dr. Michael Hartig acquired in 1919 the remains of the church, and left it built the present chapel. His goal was to build a vacation home here for the diocesan priests of Munich. The already established association dissolved in 1929, the area around the abbey to leave Speinshart.
Today, the late Gothic statue of St. Barbara is often the target of many private pilgrimage groups. Finally, the course offers in front of the church ruins and a wonderful view of the countryside.

 Saint Barbara is the Patron Saint of Prisoners, Architects, and Artillery (including Military Engineers).  She is also the Patron of Miners because of their work with explosives and also of Mathematicians.  She basically had a cult following that can be traced back to the 9th century.  She was martyred by her own father who beheaded her for becoming Christian.  For killing her, he was struck by lightning and burned to death, that is why she is so closely related to fire and explosives.


We were intending on going to a place near Barbaraberg for quite some time, Speinshart.  It is a Monastery that was built in 1145.  It is absolutely amazing.  While we were researching Speinshart, we found Barbaraberg and the information at the top.  For quite some time now...around 9 years I guess, I have been calling one of my BFF's Mom's St. Barbara or St. Bab's for short.  She's Catholic, for one, and for another it's this running silliness that she doesn't swear and she doesn't do anything bad ever regardless of what Laura says.  So she's St. Babs.  So when I saw this and that it's about 15 minutes from my house (well that turned into 25 because we had to drive up a 1 lane road and got a little lost) we HAD to go.  ST. BARBARAS!! I mean really.  We just had to.  And a whole Berg named after her as well! It was a tiny Berg, but still, a berg.  It was very interesting and one of the coolest things ever to be able to see the Speinshart Monastery (I was in a building that has 3 Monks IN THE WALL!! weird!! AND 2 SKELEBONES!! All festooned!! WEIRD but SO cool!!).  It felt strange to be in a building that has been around since 1145.  1145!!! There are no buildings in the United States that have been around since 1145.  It's just insane to think about.  1145!! (( **I googled oldest buildings in States...with the exception of the buildings that are NOW part of the States but used to be part of Mexico before we won/bought them ie parts of Utah/New Mexico/Arizona adobes etc, 1600's is the oldest buildings in the States)).

So I highly suggest you check out my pictures in the folder, there is some amazing stuff.  If you get the chance to check it out, local really should.  Speinshart is between Eschenbach and the Volcano ;) and Barbaraberg is to the right of have to look up directions, we got lost lol. 

July 2, 2011

culture all over!

Today we went to a wedding.  It was one of the coolest experiences ever.  I was wary, I always am, of going to these kind of fancy things.  I spent pretty much every day since we got the invitation trying to figure out what to wear.  I finally found the right outfit...a lovely purple cardigan sweater over a cream colored dress that has all these beautiful flowers on it.  I added navy blue leggings because it was cold and I wanted to cover the majority of my leg tattoos.

So we got to this church, which is not old at all but was built to look old and fit in...which is nice.  It was built in 1959.  My guess, though I have no info to back this up, is that it most likely was built to replace something that was destroyed during WWII.  This was the time frame in which that was done.  At any rate.

The name of the church was St. Hedwig's.  I know this is blasphemy sort of...but...I could not help but think of Harry Potter and his snowy owl.

The invitation was in French, English and German.  So that was a hint that we were in for a very culture rich experience.  Danny told me that the Groom is from Africa, we still aren't actually sure where the Bride originates from.  There were guests from all over though.  It was seriously so cool to be able to see so many different cultures and people coexisting so beautifully.  It was awesome.  I had a really good time just sitting back and watching.  I guess it was the Sociology Major in me.  I liked watching the African aspect the most...I've been able to watch Europeans so much while we've been here...and the French aspect of things was tied in with the it was something new for me.  At the end of the traditional ceremony there was some...I don't know what to call it.  Tribal...yelling? Almost like Native American sounds you'd see on a documentary or old West show.  There was also an old style broom in the courtyard and they Bride and Groom jumped over it as part of a ritual.  So cool.  I told Danny he needs to find out where they are from in the least obtrusive way possible so that I can find out more about their heritages...this stuff seriously interests me.

It was all very cool.  I'm sure I'll go to other beautiful weddings.  And I'm sure that I'll attend other fun weddings, more lovely and beautiful weddings.  But I'm not sure anything can top 3 languages and all the culture in one place.

By all means, single friends, please try!! I will show up and check it out for sure.

I guess I should end this and watch the rest of my weird show (Fringe)...hope everyone has a lovely evening!!


June 24, 2011

Deployments 101: SURVIVAL

I am writing this because there are some women I know that are facing their a new obstacle, something they haven't had to deal with.  We are in a unique position.  We are in a foreign country.  That makes it both more exiting AND a little more worrisome.  There are several steps to making a deployment easier.  Some seem painfully obvious, some maybe not so much.  Obviously each person needs to take what they need and ignore the rest, and also read with an open mind.  I am writing these, partially “tongue in cheek” but mostly from the heart.  There is some silliness thrown in just to keep it interesting but I am also keeping it real.  There will be no sugar coating just to make it easy.  I might leave out some thing but I will tell you that I have been sad etc.  Grab a glass of wine or a bar of chocolate...some cookies...maybe some popcorn...and settle down.  This is going to be long.

1.  Make sure you have a good support system of fellow Military spouses.  Your childhood best friends and your family members are awesome support but they do not understand the same way that other people that are going through or have been through a deployment will.  The friends and family that you share history with can offer support in other ways, keep them close also! Don't discount them in any way.  Try not to roll your eyes when they say that they know how you feel.  If a family member tries to compare their spouses road trip to your spouses deployment, don't shut them down mid sentence.  Maybe they have good advice on how to deal with separations.  Some of the way I handle myself was learned from my ex-Step-Father being a long haul truck driver for most of my childhood and adult life (from 7-21).  No, it's not the same.  His life was rarely in danger (though, hitting a Moose in Colorado did total his truck and he did roll it several times...not to mention HORRIBLE road rage and LA Gang encounters...but it's not the same).  I still stand by the fact that having Military spouses as a support system will help you greatly.

2.  In-Laws.  Try not to get too upset about your in-law's maybe involvement.  Parents, miss their kids…if you are a parent try to imagine how would you would feel.  Put yourself in their shoes.  I have seen this happen.  At times, the in-laws may make the deployed spouses absence be about them when you're feeling that it's more about you (and your children if you have them).  This isn't a fight you need to have.  The best answer is to ignore it.  Do not add this stress to your spouse.  Keep in mind that you love your children and you love your spouse but you don’t love your kids like you love your husband.  It’s not the same love, it's different.  Your in-laws feel the same way.  They're having strong emotions about their baby (yes, baby), fears and anxiety.  Let it go and do your best to ignore it.  Take a shot, drink a glass of wine...hang up the phone...whatever you have to do.  Make up an excuse...just get away from the situation.  But as annoying as it is, you know the truth...your nuclear family is the most important thing to stay strong for.  Don't let anything get in the way of that.

3.  Drink.  Don't over do it.  Don't develop a problem, and if you have one, get help.  There are resources.  But for the love of Pete, let loose and have a little fun.  Drink wine.  Find a beer you like! We're in Germany right now, chances are, even if you haven't found a beer you liked may be able to here! The same goes for hard liquor and drinks.  Please drink responsibly.  That means make sure you never drink and drive, ever.  Taxis are a must.  If you're going to drink with a group of friends, a DD is the best cheapest way to go but if no one volunteers, TAXI.  They are abundant here.  If you're drinking at a friends house, stay in...slumber party!!! Sounds like fun to me!! Do no risk anyone's life.  Make this fun, not stupid.  This all brings me to the next segment...

4.  Do not listen to rumors.  About anyone.  But especially about yourself.  And even more importantly, about your spouse.  If you hear something, let it go...unless you can't.  If you can't, ask your spouse DIRECTLY...not someone else.  It’s important to live a clean life, above reproach, so make sure to follow the rule of accountability.  That will put any rumors to rest.  It will also help to discuss that with your spouse.  If you are planning on going out even just to restaurants or something…it’s good to have a friend with you that you trust and will be a good witness.  It’s more important if you’re going to a club or bar to have that, a group of friends is good also, friends that are honorable of course.  If someone has to come to your house to, say, work on your car, or something…a man, have a friend there.  That way no one can say, “A man was in your house!” etc.  Accountability.  It squashes rumors before they can start.  That’s if you don’t work under the - “I don’t give a - “ - about rumors, of course.  Don’t listen to rumors when it gets closer to the time of them coming back.  When you hear official dates, believe it.  Until then, don’t believe it.  And even then…don’t tell your kids until you know for sure.  Times and dates change regularly and you do not want disappointed crying kids.  You also don’t want “is it time yet? Is it time yet? Now? Now? Now?!” every 30 minutes.  It will drive you crazy and cause your anxiety to go through the roof.  I promise.

5.  Don’t be super woman.  Because you're not.  I mean most likely.  I guess Super Woman might be reading this (Hey girl, heeyyyyy!) but...well...probably not.  If you need help, ask for it.  This one I know from personal experience.  I was the "never says no" girl.  Shh, don't start that rumor {see #4}.  You need me to organize and entire Christmas in September semi-Formal before a deployment with a woman that had a Gastric Bypass the month prior? Just me and her to do the whole thing? Sure, we'll do it! You need me to watch your kids? Okay! Cut your grass? Sure! FRG treasurer, POC, CO-leader? OK! Would you like me to shine-your-shoes-wipe-your-nose-rub-your-belly also? There was more.  I did it all.  That particular deployment I hit major burn out.  (This was deployment'd think I would have learned by then...that's a not so much).  I ran myself into the ground and I hit full force.  I ignored every single rule except one I'll get to later (one you've all heard which is why I haven't even mentioned it yet).  Here comes a hard admission.  Are you ready? I wound up checking myself into a place called Lighthouse.  It was a psychiatric evaluation unit.  I have no shame in this, it's just not something I typically blast.  The reason I am is because it's important.  IF YOU NEED HELP, GET HELP.  This was a 15month deployment.  I crashed and burned in month 14.  I could not do it any more and when I hit, I hit hard.  All those people I helped? They couldn't find the time to help me at that point...and the few that could...well by the time they realized I needed help I was beyond their help.  This specific deployment saw several suicides of spouses at the post I was at.  I assume it was similar reasons, but I don't know for sure.  Again.  You are not Super Woman.  If you need a break, TAKE ONE.  If you need someone to take your kids for a couple of hours, ASK.  If you need help GET HELP! (I told you I wasn't going to hide or sugar coat things...)

6.  Go on trips! If you’re afraid to go alone, don’t.  Go in groups, car pool, caravan or go with MWR.  We have a unique and special opportunity being here.  This is an awesome time to travel and be able to experience things.  Take this time to explore!!

7.  This one is hard.  Try not to begrudge someone else for having their spouse home.  As hard as it will be, try not to make someone else feel bad that their husband is home just because yours isn’t.  Believe me, this may come up.  I have seen it...and the way that things are right now...I can see it becoming an issue.  I personally would never wish anyone's child to be without their Father.  While I'm aware that it happens and it happens daily, I would never wish it on anyone.  If my child has to be without her Father, well it sucks, but I'm glad that our friends get to have theirs home.  Plus if I have any heavy lifting done, I know who to call.  It's a hard mindset to get into.  But being Bitter Bessy never helped anyone and that kind of attitude hurts everyone, including the children but especially friendships.

8.  Don’t burn bridges but know when to be strong enough to end friendships that are toxic.  Had I followed this simple rule, my little 72hour jaunt to the nut-hut may not have happened.  Toxic friendships have no need to continue.  Everyone knows what they look like.  If you don't, watch Mean Girls.  Actually there are a lot of Hollywood movies with examples of toxic friendships.  But you all know what I'm talking about, I'm sure you can take a look around yourselves, look at some past relationships of your own.  I have a strong belief in not burning bridges.  There is no reason to destroy another human being.  You can end a friendship without destroying someone.  You don't have to tear someone down to lose contact.  Google ways to end friendships, try adding the word "etiquette" makes a difference.  Yes, I Googled it myself.  No, I'm not linking it.  You know why? Cause you can do it yourself.  (inside joke hehehe)

9. Try to keep things as light as possible when talking to your spouse.  As hard as it may be do not ALWAYS make things doom and gloom.  Of course tell him if things really are wrong but if things are horrible every time he calls his head will not be in the game and that could put him in danger.  If at all possible, when there are problems...try to make it more of a..."this is what happened and this is how I solved it..." kind of thing.  If that's possible.  If it's not possible, that's okay too.  That's not always possible.  Also, write emails! Lots of emails! If your kids are old enough, let them also! Even if you don't have much to say.  Anything.  The new episode of Desperate Housewives was good? Tell him.  He doesn't care? So what, he likes getting mail.  We have free APO to APO.  Write him letters.  Lots of letters.  Letters are probably better than emails, really.  Physical mail...touching things.  A little spray of perfume...Perfection!!

10.  Pick a day...once a month, once every 2 months...once a week...whatever you're comfortable with...and pamper yourself.  However you want.  Get a massage.  See a movie.  Go to dinner with your girlfriends.  Go dancing.  Get your hair done.  Get your nails done.  Get a tattoo (what, I'm the only one that sees that as pampering!?!??).  Take a really long bubble bath with candles and music.  Whatever makes you say, "Ahhhhhhhh...." and relaxes you.  Ooooh, karaoke night!! I have friends that love that.  Sidetracked.  A you day.  We do things to distract our children regularly.  Kids having an off day? To the park! Kids having a bad day? A toy will help! The kid misses Daddy? Oh let's watch a movie! Well what about Mommy?

11. Don’t watch the news.  If you can avoid it…do.  Our news access isn’t so bad because we have a very varied channel but it’s still not something I’d recommend.  I nearly drove myself crazy during OIF1.  I was glued to the TV.  As a matter of fact, I learned that 101st as a Division had orders from the news (as did most of 101st lol).  I also learned when the war started from the news.  When we declared war to begin with.  The list goes on.  All of that was at the mall, I might add.  I stopped going into the Gyro shop for their cheap diet Coke cause their TV was always on CNN and it was always in there that we found stuff out.  Bad news I tell you.

12.  Obviously, stay busy.  This one everyone will tell you.  You've heard this one so many times you could say it in your sleep.  You're probably sick of hearing it.  OIF1 my friend and I began organizing mini rallies.  Support The Troops rallies.  All over Clarksville, TN.  We stood outside the gates with signs, we posted all over AOL (yes, that's how long ago it was) and Friendster (yup, that's how long ago it was) and we would go stand outside the US Cav store or right outside the gates with whoever would show up.  Sometimes people would just pull over and stand out there with us.  Eventually we planned a major nation wide rally, Operation Yellow Ribbon.  It happened all over, across the country, and our part was in Washington DC.  That's how we stayed busy through the first deployment we went through.  Planning kept us busy through the time that we didn't know anything about what was happening, there was no contact for MONTHS.  There were no phone lines, no internet connections.  They lucky guys were sleeping in their trucks, the unlucky ones were digging holes to sleep in, then driving at very slow paces from the port to wherever their final destinations may be.  It was dangerous and painstakingly slow.  We stayed busy, alright.  But not like I did later on.

Let me end by saying, Lighthouse wasn't scary at all.  It wasn't a Girl, Interrupted or One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest type of place.  It was very clean and pretty nice.  The beds were the worst part, they were about as comfortable as the Army loaner beds we got in housing here.  The food was spectacular, I was a Vegetarian at the time so I got *special food (I'm special, psh)...and I was finally diagnosed with PTSD and got the help I needed for those issues.  I have been dealing with the issues I've had with PTSD (from childhood trauma) in non- healthy ways.  Now I not only know how to say no, but I stand up for myself, not just other people (I've always been the anti-bully bully, I bully bullies lol).  I wouldn't change where I went for anything...I just wish I'd gotten there in a different manner, I guess.  It was a mostly Military facility.  There was one guy in there that was...a little scary...but he was a Vietnam Vet, homeless, and they had him in there because he had demetia and it was winter.  When he had a lucid moment he was BRILLIANT.  When he didn't...he was a tad scary.  But all the shelters were full, the aide was telling me about it.

At any rate...please direct any questions to my inbox...comments, feel free to leave anywhere :)

June 20, 2011

Schoooool and such

I haven't blogged in a while and an a lot has happened.

My Uncle and his wife had their baby last night! June 19th, 2011.  Fathers Day.  SO exciting!! He is damn beautiful and when Pete finally got the pictures up I started crying...I'm a slight emotional mess because it's only times like these that I hate being all far...on the other side of the world and all of that.  Damn Germany.  I'll get to see the baby when he's a bit bigger I that'll be fun.  That's what I tell myself anyways.

Next...Saturday we went to Berlin to see Sir Elton John preform!! An acquaintance had tickets that they couldn't use and they gave them to us.  It was very spur of the moment, Taylor had a Birthday slumber party so everything just fell into place.  We got up there about an hour and a half early and decided just to go into the venue after taking a few pictures of this really cool art/graffiti that was across from our walk.  Come to find out the art on the wall that was blocking the river was on the last main remaining 1.3km (largest remaining portion according to the stuff I can find anyways) of the Berlin Wall.  It's pretty silly that we didn't know that I guess...but like I said, we had no idea where we were, really.  I kind of had guessed that when we were in the rough area of town on our way in that we were in the former East Berlin just from the description that Micha had given me but I really didn't know...then as soon as we crossed the River Spree, things perked right back up and looked dramatically different.  It was weird.  It almost felt different.  East Berlin used to be Communist Germany (for those of you that don't know your history....or have forgotten, like I had and need a refresher) and I swear you could feel that still just sort of hanging in the air.  Once we crossed the river it felt lighter.  I swear to you.  Pictures on my FB.  The show was AMAZING.  I tried to upload the videos I took of Tiny Dancer and Benny & the Jets but it was going to take 6 hours because our net connection is maybe another day I'll have 6 hours to mess with the computer.  I'm sure I will.  So far I haven't.  I loved every single moment of the show and the entire trip.  So awesome!!!

I'm trying to figure out school now.  Some of the classes are up, the rest will be up the end of the month.  I know I'm taking English to get it out of the way and I think I'm taking Spanish.  I decided that no matter how confusing it is with my 5 years of's going to be important to my career.  So I'm just going to do it.  Take 1 class every semester until I'm fluent-ish.  I had intended on taking German...but...well...ya know, Spanish will come in handy for the rest of my life and German would just come in handy for the next couple of years.  I know that sounds terrible but it's true.  I'm awful.  I'm picking up on a few German words, enough to not seem completely I guess that's good.  I need one more class.  I don't know what to take.  Sociology 100 would be good since I'm a Soc major...I need a Humanities class, which would be fun...I need a History based class, which I like (if they offer one, I can take a History based Humanities class and knock 'em both out, it says!).  I need to take my Math class at some point but I'd rather not right now.  I'm trying to make it one awful class at a time and plain English counts as an awful class.

Okay...back to...doing stuff I guess.  Hope everyone has a lovely Monday.


May 4, 2011


First, clearly I didn't do so well with the 30 days thing.  Oh well, what can ya do.  I blame school.  Things got crazy with school there for a while and nothing else was happening.  All school, all the time.

Today I took a friend to her u/s to find out the sex of her baby.  YAY!! She's having a healthy baby boy!! Everyone is having boys this year with the exception of just a couple girls.  I swear it's mostly boys though.  It's nuts!! It was really cool, her Doctor explained so much more than any American Doc has ever explained about an u/s I've ever been too.  Very in depth.

Right before we got there I got a text from Daniel informing me that someone* in his chain of command told him that from now on he was responsible for driving some OTHER random guy new guy to and from work.  Okay whatever.  He lives about 10 minutes out of the way but whatever, that's what "orders" are all about, you enlist, you get told what to do.  This someone* then proceeded to tell him that I would be responsible for driving this soldiers family around, wherever they need to go.  EXCUSE ME?!?

Now, I am a very nice person.  I have done just this for people that don't have their cars here yet or don't have their licenses my one neighbor who had surgery on her knee and can't drive her manual car.



I wasn't ordered to do so.  My husband wasn't ordered to tell me to do so.  Maybe there are marriages where this is normal, maybe there are chain of commands where this would be business as usual or whatever.  But this is not how my marriage or how my life will be working.  We have been here for 7 months and I have not met this someone*.  I haven't gotten a phone call.  Not that I'd expect to at all.  But that's all that a situation like this would require to be a go.  A little phone call maybe.  A simple, "Ms. Seely, would you mind..." would go a long way.

Last time I checked, I didn't enlist.  I am more than willing to help out where help is needed, especially in emergency situations.  During the last field exercise I took the above mentioned friend and her baby to the ER because he had a shockingly high fever.  That was the first time we met, she didn't have her license yet.  It was not an issue at all, I'd do it again in a heartbeat if she needed it, same with these people or anyone really.  But this whole situation makes me completely INSANE.

What it boils down to is respect.  I don't feel like I am being respected.  I feel like this someone* is throwing around his rank and maybe used to getting what he wants from whoever at any time because of his rank.  Maybe people are intimidated into doing what he wants...he's not that high just not that high.  I'd respect his rank, I guess, if he respected me as a person, which he has proven that he doesn't.  I asked Danny for clarification on wording twice to make sure that my annoyance was justified.  I'm obviously not going to say anything to anyone unless need be, and I don't think that need will present itself,  I feel extremely dehumanized.  Who the hell does he think he is? I know who he thinks he is...but he ain't my Daddy.

I just want to act 5 and say, "You're not the boss of me neiner neiner neiner" and slap him.

Of course I won't do that, because I'm 30 going on 40.  But I'm also not going to bow down to anyone.  And if he'd ever taken the time to meet me he'd know that.  All day I've been wandering around mumbling, "try to tell me what to do, psh"...most people that actually know me know that I'm not a rebel, exactly, just kind of...strong willed...very Aries-ish.  If you want me to do something make me feel needed or make me feel like it was my idea or chances are, it's not getting done.  Sometimes guilt works but usually it just pisses me off but straight up telling me to do it REALLY pisses me off.  And the absolute wrong way to go about doing something is trying to tell my husband to make me do something.  Bahahahaha...I am NOT the "to love and obey" kind of spouse.  I'm the Princess Diana kind of, leave out that obey and I'm in.  Obey is outdated and verging on abusive, I'm not property.  But I'm getting off on a tangent.  Did I mention Aries? The Ram? Yeah.  And I'm still pretty angry about this.  I'm not sure that this venting thing is really working.

Stupid someone*.  All this * is because I am protecting the jackassery.  Not innocent, no no.  And not stupid.  I'm sure he's a smart guy.  Maybe he's single.  Or maybe his wife is the obeying type.  Who knows.  Good for him if she is.  Poor Danny lol...poor poor Danny.


I am going to watch more Pinky & Brain and drink fizzy water and mutter to myself "try to tell me what to do stupid son of a beetch who the hell does he think he is I don't need a new Daddy psh he can go..."



April 18, 2011

Day #2

Today's challenge is a picture of myself and the person that I have been the closest with the longest.  That's tricky.  There are a lot of people that I have been close with for a very long time.  But I'm going to have to stick with the one that I always turn to when I feel like I am going to break or when things are the best.
I still remember the night like it was yesterday even thought it was 1996...Korn had played so loud my ears were ringing.  I had just colored my hair and inky purple and my ears and sides of my face matched.  Luckily it was dark inside the Saltair.  After the show, Ian, Ryan and I were waiting outside for our ride when the guys spotted their friend, Chad.  They started talking to him.  Chad was there with his friend Alisha.  She and started talking.  The rest is history.

Yes, I met my BFF at a Korn concert.

30 by 30/day 1

Since I turned 30 today I decided to do the 30 day challenge even though pretty much everyone has past that but whatever, I decided to wait till now cause it just made sense.  So here goes.

 This is a picture of me, from today.  My smile is totally cheesy, forced and all.

Ten Facts-
1.  Utah is the Beehive State.  That's why my cake was shaped like a Beehive.  I'm perpetually homesick.
2.  My hair is longer right now than it has been in...since before my lung collapsed...whenever that was...2008? I always have VERY short hair.
3.  I am enrolled in 4 year college for the first time 30.  Better late than never.
4.  I am currently watching Without A Paddle for the first time ever.  Surprising.  It's hilarious.
5.  If someone would have told me how loud both Bulldogs and Great Danes snore I may have rethought at least one of the breeds...probably not.
6.  I am obsessed with shopping online.  I don't always buy the things I put into carts, it's like window shopping...only online.  It's because I can't actually go into Target anymore I guess.
7.  I have to write a 10 page paper in APA format in 7 days.  That's not too difficult I guess.  I should have been working on it in the past few weeks but my medication has been making me loopy it's been impossible to focus.  Ew.
8.  I also have finals coming the end of this month.  Double ew.
9.  I should be sleeping.  Fact.
10.  This is a LOT harder than I thought it would be.

I was prepared to write more of a blog but I was distracted by the movie and stuff and it's now almost 3am so I'm just going to have to end this and write day 2 today/tomorrow whatever.


February 7, 2011


This weekend we went to Amberg.  I posted pics on my FB.  Everyone had been except me and Taylor so it was all new to us.  I learned that getting stuff for my pretend salon was EXPENSIVE.  But the Sally's here sells professional products, so that was nice.  I was able to get some TiGi stuff but they didn't have the color line, which wasn't super surprising.  I ended up getting X Pro brand stuff along with L'Oreal Maji colors.  TiGi used to use the L'Oreal line so I'm pretty familiar with it too.  I'm very excited about all of this though.  I figure I'll put my schooling to use.  It's not going to be a real salon, of course.  Just somewhere I can do my friends hair.  But long story short, it was $173.  Whoa.  I did get a big bucket of bleach and a ton of color.  I should only need to buy specific colors if someone wants something I don't have and maybe developer later.  So that's not bad at all.  I keep telling myself.  I love doing hair so I guess in reality it's not terrible.  It provides me the ability to do it.

We also stopped and got a new couch.  I'll post a pic down there at the bottom, along with an updated picture of Jax.  We just got new ones yesterday.  We also got word that we get to pick him up on the 5th of March.  A little bit later than I had initially thought but I think it's good that this particular kennel likes to keep the pups with their Mom's until they are 10 weeks old.  It gives them a better head start, I'm sure.  The woman I am dealing with is the Vice President of the Great Dane Kennel Club of Germany so I'm guessing she knows what she is doing.  I'm excited about the new couch, we made sure that we got one with room for Jax.  The salesman kept saying we could train him not to get onto the furniture when we were asking which couches were sturdy.  No thank you.  I want to cuddle with him all the time and I don't want to sit on the floor, so why should he.  I'm totally going to break this puppy but he's going to love me and be well behaved so it's okay.  I really hope he's like Ollie and I broke him so it should work.  I hope that he and Ollie are BFF's too, when we get back to the states.

I started school today.  I had two assignments.  I finished one.  They're due the 13th so I didn't even look at the second one.  I will.  I just wanted to give myself a minute.  I'm a little anxious.  About everything.  So it's best to take baby steps for me.  Once I get a little more into the swing of things I'll be more apt to get into the assignments right when they are posted.  And...honestly...once I actually enjoy the class I'm taking.  I'm not really into this class.  And I'm not really into Biology which is my next class.  But Philosophy will be wonderful, I know it.  I am so excited about my field of choice.  I am going to seriously enjoy every bit of this.  I know I'm old.  I understand that I waited so long because I just couldn't find time and I was just not medicated enough to be able to do it, I think.  Not well anyways.  But I also hadn't really developed my own personality.  I think had I got to college right out of highschool I probably would have chose something less suited for adult me.  I wanted to major in English and minor in French.  I still like both of those courses but...well...what exactly did I want to do with that? Cause there's not a lot that can be done.  Now I have developed to the point that I know exactly what interests me.  I know exactly who I want to be.  I want to help people, teenagers in particular.  I want them to see me and know I'm like them, just a person.  I'm not some fancy psychologist of social worker.  I'm a human with human flaws.  I really think I can connect and help them in ways that maybe other people couldn't.  Teenagers think I'm cool.  I have met a lot that are just immediately smitten with me.  Not in a "in love with" type of way but just in a "wow she's cool, when I grow up I can be like that!" I'm not saying these things to sound cocky because Lord knows, I'm not.  But from a teenage perspective I am pretty cool.  I have tattoos and current hair and I talk to them life people, not like children or as if they are lesser than me.  I really believe that I can make a difference and I am so excited to be able to try.  The major in Sociology is because it will help me understand different backgrounds.  Where people are coming from.  Religions, cultures, all of the things that make us who we are even if we don't want them to.  I was thinking of majoring in Psychology but I know that with a minor I'll have enough of what I need to do what I want.  I already understand teenage psychology a lot more than some.

So yes.  A new couch, a lot of hair color, school and a puppy.  Exploring! Always exploring.  Next weekend I am hoping for Bayreuth.  Cross fingers!! I know I've said that before but things keep coming up.  This time I really want to make it happen.  Danny wants to go to Nuremburg because there is a castle there.  I am all for castles but...Bayreuth has a haunted graveyard!!!

In other news, my dog ate my Kindle.  So I need to get a new one.  NEED.  Stella is the worst dog in the universe.  Never get an English Bulldog.  I repeat, English Bulldogs are EVIL.

I thought I would mention.  I have become obsessed with light blue nail polish.  I would like to find some sky blue polish.  I got a China Glaze color called For Audrey and I swear it is Tiffany blue but I want something lighter.  So just know that within a short while baby blue will be the color that everyone wants.  This is how it happens with me.  I'm finally just going to say it, predict it.  I have a knack.  I get obsessed with a color of an item and can't find it anywhere.  Within a short while it is EVERYWHERE and of course I don't want it anymore.  So there is my fashion related prophecy.

Alright, so here are my pictures.  Do enjoy!
None of the matching furniture, we chose a dark brown leather recliner.

Izaiah Jax Teller, 6 weeks old....SO CUTE!!

Jaxy poo.  Look at that wrinkly nose and those giant paws!


Amberg, how cool is that??

So I guess that is all for today.  I need to do some wonderful online shopping, order a few things I can't find here.  Hope everyone has a lovely week!!


January 29, 2011

books books books

I went to the library today.  Taylor got a Buffy book.  Danny sat down and read a magazine.  I wandered around the Mythology, Philosophy and Social Sciences section for quite a while.  I was looking for some books on religion.  They didn't have an actual religious section, which was kind of odd to me.  They had a HUGE Christian collection ranging from Catholicism to Methodist literature.  There were 3 books on Mormonism (including the Book Of Mormon).  There was one shelf devoted to Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism.  A couple of shelves about Judaism.  And one shelf on Islam.  That was it.  Nothing else.  There was a small section of Sylvia Brown books and even smaller area on ghosts/paranormal anything.  I saw absolutely no books on Wicca.  Which is actually what I was looking for, specifically.  I was able to find a book on Crystals.  Which may be helpful, but probably not.  I got a book titled Illustrated Dictionary of Religions.  It looks fantastic.  It will contain more religions with hopefully good details.  I also got Mythology for Dummies and a book about dream interpretation.  Absolutely not what I was looking for.  I'm kind of bummed.  But I can do research on the net so it's alright I guess.  It's for a book, by the way.  I'm not converting.  Converting from what, I don't know.  But I'm not converting to Wicca.


Danny leaves for the field Monday.  It's going to be quiet around here.  I'm not looking forward to doing dishes.  I'm also bummed that he's leaving before pay day cause that means I have 1/2 a tank of gas in the Xterra and 3/4 in the Mazda.  I don't like not having full tanks.  Even though I don't go anywhere regularly.  I have a few things to do that it's distressing.  Cause I'm easily stressed out.  He's only going to be gone 5 days, I act like it's two weeks.  I need to get on the registration so that this isn't an issue.  Can't do that until he returns.  Things like this irritate me.  I don't understand a gas rations card.  They allow you plenty.  More than enough even living way out here in the middle of nowhere.  Not to mention my name is on the stateside registration as well as the insurance.  It should be enough.  Oh well.  What can you do.

It's getting closer to time to start planning day trips.  I am heading out to Langen to pick up my puppy in about 2 weeks.  That's over near Frankfurt.  So I'd like to stop there and wander around some.  But around the beginning of March I would like to take another trip.  I just don't know where yet.  Somewhere puppy friendly, I think.  So we can take Jax.  Oh, and I want to go to Bayreuth.  To wander around the cemetery and check out some palaces, museums.  So maybe I'll plan that.

I am currently reading a Pretty Little Liars book.  It's interesting.  I read the first one and this is the I'm lost.  But it's somethin'.  I am gonna go help do most of the dinner prep...then prepare for a bath complete with my book and some hot hot water cause baby it's cold outside.


January 25, 2011

A Little History

We went to Vilseck on Saturday to check out some furniture.  Of course because it was the luck of Rachel, it was not to be.  They were closed for inventory (yes, on a Saturday).  Danny told me that the day I got my license they drove around a lot and happened to see a cemetery, right there on post.  So we decided to go check it out.  I love cemeteries, the older the better.  There is potential for some VERY old cemeteries in a land that has documented occupants before the 600's!

I got quite a few pictures.  It wasn't as old as I had hoped, 1930's was the earliest dates I saw but several didn't have dates.  Tragically (in my opinion) around here it seems that headstones get replaced.  It is a bummer cause I like the old ones...more character than these shiny black things.  But I digress.

So, it seems that long ago before Vilseck was a post the land (and that surrounding all of the Rose Barracks and Graf) were several small towns.  In the 1937-38 time frame the land was taken to house the German Army.  This caused the evacuation of the towns, Langenbruck was one of them.  In 1945 Vilseck was surrendered to the United States.  Post war, Vilseck the town integrated 5 villages into one community.  Vilseck the post, however, maintained some of the old Langenbruck relics.  The cemetery is the one we have found, I have determined if there is more to find or not yet.

I am sure you can find most of this at the Museum in Graf or by Wikipedia (which is where I got a good portion of my info) but I just wanted to give the basic run down of the area.  I feel like doing a little historical research of the places I visit is the best way to go, it's also a good learning experience for Taylor.  I'm not sure how much of it she actually pays attention to but it's a good base anyways.  (By the way, I live in a hamlet.  How cool is that?)

So here are my pictures...there aren't a ton, it's a small area.