Friday, August 31, 2012

celebrating our evelyn.

Gotcha day and bringing Evelyn home was just one year ago. It's crazy how one year seems so far from this moment and yet so fresh in our minds and emotions.  In so many ways Evelyn seems like a new person still to us and in so many more ways we know her very well. We honestly cannot imagine our family without her and don't quite remember what it was like.  

We are so so thankful the girls have each other and that God orchestrated Evelyn's homecoming on His timeline and not ours.  Our girls both had losses (of great difference) but found such great friends in each other and that helped fill some of the gaps during the transition to Germany for them.  Ah, God is good over and over again... whether we see it now or later - it's truth.  

We thank you LORD for your providence in Evleyn's life and for bringing her to us, we are so very blessed and happy.  Thank you too for showing us about your beautiful adoption of us into your family so we could easily hear your call to adopt our sweet Ev into ours.  What a beautiful example you've given us.  We pray to love and be more like you everyday to our girls.

Looking back... 
Gotcha day - the day we brought Evelyn back to the hotel with us (August 29th)!!!
A little time outside of the hotel room did us good :)  A distraction called Starbucks where we met another adoptive family.
Travel day to the states, long day.

And, arrival stateside after 40 hours of travel, phew.  What a fun few days!  Can you believe how much both girls have grown and changed?!

Cuddling with my daughterS! :)

On the 29th we celebrated Evelyn and loved on her a little extra, why not!?  We had friends over and swam in a little yard pool and made pink cupcakes and let the girls decorate them.  
The little lady of the day and her friends.
Super cute cheeks :)
And, yes, the cupcakes were a success... she may have had more than one... 

Monday, August 27, 2012

barefoot park.

Remember how great we think the parks and pools are here?  Yeah, pretty unique and we are really enjoying the total experience.  Last weekend we spent the afternoon at the barefoot park.  At the beginning of the park you leave your shoes in a cubbie and walk the 3.5k loop.  Throughout the loop you go through mud, cross a river a few times, shimmy across some beams, ropes and boulders and walk across all types of rocks, corks and sand!  It was a very hot day so we ended up trying to rush across some of the stones because our feet felt like they were burning (and we carried the girls a chunk of the way because of the heat).  What a fun experience and we're looking forward to doing another one in the future.
 Norah & I entering the mud pit, she got freaked out half way through but Evelyn walked the whole thing!
 Adorable muddy little American girl.
 They love to hold hands.  And now you can see how short Evelyn is compared to Norah because of where the mud hits Evelyn at her hips and Norah at her mid thigh! :)
 One of the river crossings.
 David giving the girls a little break from the heat.
Loving the adventure.
And the final cross of the river on this neat rope bridge!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

more park fun.

Let me just start off with the above picture... my girls. They just love each other and Norah is always saying, "Evelyn, hold my hand! Hold my hand Ev!" in the car and it's so cute :)

Next, we went to one of our favorite German parks (from the post before) with our neighbor and favorite little friend Ellah.  Norah and Ellah really got into it this time... German style.  All the kids (ummm up until way too old) are topless so our girls joined in!  What a beautiful day here.
 Adorable chicks.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

rothenburg. a walled city.

On our drive home from Prague we spent the night in Rothenberg, Germany. It's a medieval walled city with much history and a wonderful story of how it eluded attacks during WWII.  We walked the streets in the evening and then took the "night watchman's tour," where a man dressed as an old watchman told us about the history of the town and how it stayed protected during many different wars.  This town is also the inspiration village for Pinocchio and can be seen in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang!
This is not our hotel but a very cute German hotel with a restaurant below. I love the ivy!

 Enjoying the warm night and beautiful buildings.
 Livin' it up as toddlers getting pushed around and fed fun new foods all the time :)
 Sharing ice cream before the tour. Aren't the buildings so neat?!
 During the tour we'd stop and the watchman would tell stories, so we let Norah run around a bit... here she is eating again and enjoying her Daddy.
 Not the best shot of the walled part of the city but still a beautiful view, and a cute couple, too!
 At one of the entrances to the city, only one man can pass through at a time (for identification purposes).  And Norah being well, 2.5 and loving life!
One more fun thing we did on the way home... got a GREAT deal on crystal!  There was a crystal outlet on the way home from Rothenburg so we stopped and hit the jackpot.  They only have the warehouse open on Fridays.  We got 12 wine glasses, 4 goblets (that we think match our wedding set), a decanter, 3 little shot glasses for lemoncello, 4 small glasses for mixed drinks and that beautiful bowl (and maybe a gift or two)--all for 75 euro!  It was fun just to get such a great deal.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Over the 4th of July we drove to Prague to get a taste for a historical city that many people here have told us is one of their favorite destinations.  We were not disapointed in the city, only that we didn't get to experience more of it.  We are so thankful for such an amazing opportunity that we have here to just drive over to the Czech Republic!  Here's a few pictures of out time in Praha!
The coocoo clock tower that comes alive every hour - with a live man that plays a trumpet in the tall tower. It was neat to see and hear multiple times.
The Charles Bridge - with about 30 statues of famous saints from different time periods . The orginal statues are around the city and all the ones that now reside on the bridge are replicas. This bridge has always been the big connection between the Prague castle and the rest of the city. It's very wide and long, making it quite beautiful.
We took a half a day to tour the Jewish Quarter and it was so informative. The Jews were badly mistreated and we were able to get a grasp on their history in Prague.  The picture above is of the Old Jewish Cemetery where there are estimated to be over 100,000 burials (12,000 tombstones). I couldn't get anymore pictures for respect sake. Wikipedia says the following about why the tombstones are so close together... According to halakhah, Jews must not destroy Jewish graves and in particular it is not allowed to remove the tombstone. This meant that when the cemetery ran out of space and purchasing extra land was impossible, more layers of soil were placed on the existing graves, the old tombstones taken out and placed upon the new layer of soil. This explains why the tombstones in the cemetery are placed so closely to each other. This resulted in the cemetery having 12 layers of graves.
A view of part of the city.
A beautiful Jewish synagogue, Spanish-inspired architecture.
A great lunch on the street--a nice break from walking all day!
At lunch Norah really started getting sick - we weren't sure if it was a heat stroke but it ended up being some weird throat virus that I too got which also lead us to end our trip away in the ER. So fun!!
This area is called Old Town, it was near the coocoo clock and very beautiful.
 Watching the girls enjoy one of the city parks - so in love!
A view of a street on Wenclesas Square (we stayed on this street behind my head)!

Thursday, August 16, 2012


We try and take the girls out on their own every few weeks... this last date with Norah was for Pinkalicious (a book character)!  We had a fun time doing the pink thing and experiencing Norah's first live show.  Each time the lights would go off for a scene change Norah would wisper to me that she couldn't see and it was too dark... what were they doing?!  It was adorable.
And Ellah would literally yell, PINKALICIOUS! each time she came back on the stage.  The whole audiance would laugh and it was cute--who can stop something like that?!
The girls adored taking pictures with each character.


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