Saturday, December 17, 2011

Catching up

A Christmas Market in Vienna
It’s been a long time since we gave everyone an update on our adventures in Portugal. We have no excuses other than being busy with two small children and two jobs and four pets and some friendly visitors and traveling to interesting places and, and, and.

Port Wine Tasting with Kim and Patrick
October and November were good times to receive some friends and family in Portugal and to share the developments of Amelia and Tristan. In early October we had Gemma (Dan’s mom) here who came over to play with the grandkids. We also had our friends Kim and Patrick visit from Colorado who took the chance to explore Portugal and were able to visit with us for a few days. And then we had the chance to celebrate an early Thanksgiving with some family for the first time in several years as Grandpa Steve (Katrin’s dad) and Grandma Pam came over. It was great to have the chance to catch up with everyone and to see the kids play with some of their extended family members.
A Concert in Vienna
 In early December we decided to explore a little bit more of Europe and we flew to Vienna for a few days and then took a train from there to Prague. Our children remain enamored with traveling, especially Amelia who has now been in ten countries and is always talking of her next travel opportunity. As we schlepped all of our stuff down a flight of stairs to get on a bus to take us out to the plane in Barcelona and after being on the go for quite a while Amelia declared “I like taking a bus to get the plane because I am a traveler.”  The Christmas season was a great time to visit as the cities were lit up and revelers were everywhere and the famed Christmas markets were a fun adventure for the kids. The little ones weren’t used to the colder weather there but we got a bit lucky with temps in the low 40s and no rain. In Vienna we enjoyed touring the Spanish Riding School and walking through the gardens of the Schoenbrunn Palace and in Prague we mostly walked around saying “wow”. The innumerable spires, the old bridges across the river, the castle up on the hill and the general eclectic feel of the city left us breathless. 
Our Quaint Little Hotel Room in Prague
And the View from the Windows
We are now preparing for our next trip which will be to USA for the holidays. This year we’ll keep ourselves to the east coast where we’ll have the chance to visit old friends in DC, celebrate Christmas with family in New York, and ring in the new year in Miami.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Wheels on the Bus

This has been a huge hit for the last few weeks. Both kids like to pack their bags on go for a trip on our new bus. Unfortunately the bus has seen better days and may be taking a trip to the recycle bin soon, but it sure was fun while it lasted!