Monday, August 24, 2009

The last few crazy days

Yippee! We are finally here! I apologise for taking so long to post our last days on the road, but as you may imagine, it has been a little crazy!

Fun photo opps at the Marionette Museum.

Hohensalzburg Fortress. Yes, we had to climb all the way to the top. Yes, it was insanely steep

Almost there!

As soon as the kids made it up, all they wanted to do was run back down.

Bennett ran a bit too fast. Is that not just the most heartbreaking face?

Remember how we have spoken of danger to self in the past? Yes, this is a second story window.

Of course, my luck being what it is, Mirabell fountain wasn't working. But we did get a cute picture by the gate. My little Von Trapps.

Michael insisted we take this picture. It is just the birthplace of some unknown musician. Mozart? Was that the name? Have you heard of him? Me either.

Eating an ice cream cone while riding in a carriage through Salzburg. Life is GOOD!

The trick fountains at Hellbrunn Palace, Salzburg. The Archbishop that commissioned these, had a very silly sense of humor. Starting with his outdoor dining table, he placed hidden water spouts throughout his garden to soak unsuspecting guests. (Notice, the chair at the head of the table (the archbishop's) isn't spraying water) Dallen and Bennett wore their swimsuits and went to get WET! Boy they did! The rest of us marveled at the water powered sculptures, and just tried to stay dry.

The boy in his underwear kept following Dallen because Dallen seemed to be able to find all the hidden spouts- and then get soaked when they'd go off.

Okay Mom, we did it, now it is YOUR turn!

Hayden solved the problem of his wet clothes quite nicely, don't you think?

"I'm free!!!!"

We were so lucky to be able to stop in Frieburg, Germany and see our nephew that is serving his mission there. We went 3 hours out of the way and got hopelessly lost in the city, but it was worth it! Sorry the picture is cut off, the only person around to take it, had a cast on, and couldn't operate the camera very well.

We stayed in temporary housing at the Air Base in Ramstien, Germany. The room was "pet friendly" so it had lots of things like crates and bowls. Those of you who know me and know how I feel about animals, are probably laughing at this picture. Yes, it was their DAD that let them use all the pet stuff. I just gave them a bath after.

Lining up to drive onto the train. This train took us across the English Channel, and to the end of our journey.
Now our next steps are finding a house big enough for a family of six in a country where a family of four is a strange sight - AND not killing any innocent people while we try to get used to driving on the other side of the road. (Michael and I both have had a near miss. It stinks that your instinct is to swerve to the right, that just makes it worse!)

Monday, August 17, 2009

And Again...

Are you getting sick of me yet? Can you believe I have actually kept up a consecutive account of our trip? This has got to be some sort of new record.
The view from our hotel balcony in Halstatt.

Halstatt was Michael's favorite place. If the kids thought they were sick of him taking pictures before...

Getting ready to go into the Salt Mine. Michael and the bigger kids had to put on protective clothing and walk down the shaft. Mom and Hayden stayed behind because you had to be 4 to go inside. Maybe next time Mom will be old enough.

Inside the Halstatt Salt Mine.

Halstatt Salt Mines Railway

I told you, he only climbs when great bodily harm is a possible result.

Halstatt Square's Plaque Column

Michael couldn't understand why I didn't want to go inside the Carnal House. Hmmmm...a place where the townsfolk put the remains of all their dead because they don't have enough land to bury them in. Did he just meet me?

Good-bye and thank-you, Halstatt! Here we come Salsburg.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

On the road again

Are you ready for more? For those of you just now checking the blog, get comfortable, because there is a lot to read! Michael sacrificed his time in Vienna to take the kids to a few things that they would want to do. Like the zoo. He figured he only had one day in Vienna, and he wanted to see everything, so he will just come back with his sister. What do you think of THAT, Analee?
Besides, there was only some silly Mozart festival going on.....

The lion cages at the Vienna Zoo. Those are some pretty cute lions!

I think the squirrels in the zoo are a little used to humans, don't you?

Hayden spent the better part of the morning asking to see the bears, when we finally got to their pen, he didn't even look at them! Because if there is one thing that distracts my boy -it is heavy machinery. The were doing construction outside of the Bear cage, so that is all he wanted to watch! Zoo entrance fee - there is money well spent.

Dallen the Turtle

If you pull on the ropes, the bird's wings flap and you get a ride.
Speaking of money well spent and heavy machinery. This one really worked, and Hayden was in paradise!

This little patch played music when you stomped on it.

Creating worlds at the Vienna Zoo.

Relaxing after a long hard day of touring the zoo and digging in the dirt.

Kreuzenstien Castle. It was neat to see, but this was a difficult stop for the kids. The only way you could see the castle was by a guided tour and they were only in German. (The tour guide was also very snappy with the kids - Okay lady - my toddler probably wouldn't be completely silent through your spiel even if he could understand you! So calm down!) Anyway - I helped pass the time by interpreting. No, I don't know German, but I think my version of the tour was more entertaining.

The armory

Running down the hill in Durnstien Austria. You know you have been driving too long, when your two year old sees your car and yells, "Yay! Our car home! We're home!"

Durnstien Castle. King Richard the Lion Heart (A Carpenter ancestor - Michael is quick to point out) was imprisoned here.

The hike up was a killer, but the view was amazing. The problem is, two year olds don't care about views. So I ended up sitting on the path with Hayden waiting for the others when he flat out refused to climb another step. He even told me to go on without him.

Mommy saw this picture AFTER Daddy had taken it. You let them climb, WHERE?

At Schonnbrun Castle, the kids were able to load a cannon and shoot into a pile of tin cans. Are you nervous about Hayden with a hammer? Because I am. And Maryn definitely is.

Chess, anyone?

How about Chopsticks?

This is the best castle ever! It has a cannon AND a playground!? Those medieval kids were so spoiled!

Bennett has decided his new favorite thing is hedge mazes. But he likes the ones he can see over best. (Aren't those technically just hedges?)

Austria's largest Cathedral in Linz. The kids were most impressed by the fountain in the square.

Few things are sweeter than hearing Hayden sing "I Am A Child of God" in a Gothic Cathedral. (He found a book of Hymns on the pew)

The view from the highway on our way to Halstatt, Austria. Michael was right, this is even better than Brasov.

I really wanted to stay there, but Michael said it was out of the way. I never get to go anywhere fun. (She said as she drove from Turkey through Austria on her way to England.)
Only four more days left on our trek. I think we are all getting to the end of our patience. Bennett asked me yesterday, "Mom, how many more hotels do we have to sleep in?" I didn't have the heart to explain to him that we will actually be in a hotel in England until we find a house. I'm pretty sure he thinks that when we arrive there, we will just go to a house with all of our stuff in it. Wouldn't that be nice?