Let’s try this again

Here we are again – to continue the blog or discontinue the blog?  After much thought and consideration, I decided to keep this site up.  I like seeing our life and adventures recorded and shared, and our lives will never be boring (no matter where we are).  Now that I am back, let’s try this again – how about an update?

– I’ve been working for over a year now.  This does not sound like much, but when you move every 2-3 years and must job search over and over again, this is an accomplishment.  I started out as the receptionist at a vet clinic, and now I am the operations assistant, i.e. office manager.  I love working and feeling appreciated.  The job can be demanding and stressful, but it is nice to be good at something.  I have wonderful co-workers and leadership, and I love going to work.  I also hate it, but that is for the next reason…

– Meet Leonard Andrew Michael Carpenter.


Remember when I said that we were unsure if our family was complete?  Well, after years of talking and debating, we decided to have one more child.  This pregnancy was different than any of the girls – I was sick, tired, and miserable for the first few months.  I also looked and felt the best after that time passed.  We hoped for a boy, and we got one!  This little man, our one and only boy, was born on his father’s birthday and shares his great-grandfather’s name.  He is also my only natural labor (damn German epidural did not start working until half an hour after he was born).  We call him Leo, and he is beloved beyond measure by his big sisters.

Is our family complete now?  Absolutely.  4 children is plenty!


– Since the last time I wrote, over a year ago, my mom has visited twice!  She has been here both summers.  She was able to stay for 6 weeks this summer, which was wonderful.  She was such a great help with my children, as adjusting after pregnancy was harder than I anticipated.  Last summer, we took her and my youngest brother to Berlin, Nürnberg, Flossenbürg, and Salzburg (Austria).  While we did not travel as much this visit, we did take her to see the inactive volcano in Parkstein, swimming at many pools, crystal shopping in Neustadt ad Waldnaab, the Devil’s Cave in Pottenstein, and fests in Grafenwoehr and Vilseck.

Our family has also made trips to Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Linderhof Palace, Wiesbaden, Legoland, Prague (Czech Republic), London (United Kingdom), and Leiden, Noordjiwik, and Keukenhof Gardens (Netherlands), as well as many day trips I cannot recall.  Life in Europe has been very rewarding.  As much as we would love to stay, it will end soon.  Here are a few highlight pictures from the last year, although my Instagram does better justice:

Nürberg Volksfest 2015
Nürberg Volksfest 2015
Outside Westminster Abbey, London
Buckingham Palace, London
Vilseck Fischerfest 2015
Legoland, outside of Munich
Touring the Berlin Wall with Uncle Noah
Mirabel Gardens, Salzburg (Austria)
German-American Volksfest 2014, Grafenwoehr
Prague Castle, Prague (Czech Republic)
Linderhof Palace
Keukenhof Gardens, The Netherlands
Noordwjik Beach, The Netherlands
Russian Orthodox Church, Wiesbaden

– Lorelei broke her arm, in October 2014.  Of all the kids, it had to be her.  She was playing on the monkey bars at school and fell off – several hours later and surgery to place pins, and she had her first fracture.  I am 30 years old and have only fractured a pinkie; Andy has never had a broken bone.  Lorelei has beat us at the ripe age of 6!  She had to have surgery to remove the pins, but she has been great ever since.  She even braved the monkey bars again recently.  Here is a picture of her sweet red cast:


– I have been the Key Spouse for the squadron here for a year now.  It’s been challenging and interesting, and I never thought I would fulfill this kind of role.  Turns out I actually like volunteering and helping others (shocker, right?).  For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, the Key Spouse is a liaison between a squadron and the spouses of those in the squadron.  Our spouses group is also very active, so I also help coordinate and manage events and activities.  And I really enjoy it!

Other than all this, I do not think I have anything new to share.  I will strive to maintain this blog – if not for myself, then for my children to see at some point.  Andy and I often look at them and marvel at how awesome their lives are, despite the pitfalls of military life.  I want them to remember all this, and maybe this will help.


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