One quick minute!

Hello everyone! 


I’m soooo sorry it has taken me so long to update.


The morning after my last post Ryan was released from the hospital.  It was a flat out miracle!  Everything was downgraded to nothing at all….  He has no torn muscle, no sprained ankle, and nothing more than a stiff neck.  He was a bit stiff and a bit sore but no more than that.   He feels great and is already back at work and busier than ever!


So… I’m in Phoenix, and I pretty much hit the ground running… which is why it took me forever to update. 


I’ll be here for another three weeks and a bit so it’s going to be quite a while before I’m back but to be honest I just don’t have the time… I’m barely finding enough time to skim everything to make sure I’m not missing anything big! 


So until I’m home again in Germany I probably won’t be around but I’ll be thinking of all of you.


Courtney

Sweet Relief…

When I left the hospital last night I left Ryan in a neck brace, tired, sore, and worried…


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I walked into the hospital room at a few minutes after 8am this morning.  To see this!


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He’s a little ragged but he’s doing great!  The doctors said that there is no sign of a fracture this morning at all! 


The sprain has been downgraded to a minor sprain, the contusions and swelling on his other leg have actually GONE DOWN overnight with no ice or wrapping.  The torn muscle is a bit painful but on further assessment they think that it will heal just fine on it’s own. 


In fact Ryan says the thing that hurts him the most is hospital inflicted!


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This was Ryan’s very first hospital stay AND his very first IV and he wants it out!!!!!


Unfortunately he is still in the hospital…  Standard procedure here in Germany is to be admitted for observation for 25 hours.  Ryan was officially admitted last night at about 9pm.  Shift ends today at 4pm.  So this means he won’t get released until tomorrow morning…  He’s a little annoyed to be stuck in the hospital for three days for bumps and bruises but we’re both just so thankful that he’s okay!


Although the timing is awful Ryan has forbid me from canceling my trip home when he’s not even limping.  So I’ll be leaving Germany as planned on Sunday morning.  I feel guilty for leaving him but I’m so glad that I’ve spent the last few weeks freezing meals for him and making sure he’d have minimal work!


I’m going to spend today giving the house a good hard scrub and making sure that the house is self sufficient so that Ryan  doesn’t have to do much in the next few weeks.  


Before I left I took him his portable DVD player, his MP3 player, his Nintendo DS and a book.  If he gets bored it will be a miracle!  I can guarantee you that he’ll have a more relaxing day than most of us!


I have to take a moment to say thank you from Ryan and I.  We have kept in touch with family and friends through email and have been part of the online community for years now.  But you have blown us away with your outpouring of prayers and words of support in the midst of this scare.   We are truly blessed to have all of your in our lives and to know that there are prayers going up for us worldwide.  Thank you… more than words. 


I’ll let you know if there are any changes or updates.


Courtney

PRAYERS NEEDED

Today, on September 11th, we remember “where we were.”


Seven years ago today, I was sitting by the phone waiting to hear the words that my husband would be okay.  He was deployed to Saudi Arabia when the towers fell.


Tonight, seven years later, I sat by his hospital bed and waited to hear the words that he would be okay…


I’m still waiting.


Today on his way home from work Ryan was in a motorcycle accident.  He rode the bike this morning because it was SUPPOSED to be a beautiful day.  He left work early when it started to drizzle so he could be home before the worst of the storm hit. 


He didn’t make it. 


A few miles from home he hit hard rain and slowed WAY down to avoid an accident.  The SP’s at the scene told me that the person who called it in said he wasn’t going more than 30mph.  He wasn’t speeding, he wasn’t driving recklessly, he was being so careful.  Thank God, because if he hadn’t been I don’t even want to think what might have happened.


He hit a patch of mud on a curve and the bike slid out from under him.  It then caught the road and tipped back up throwing him from the bike before flipping end over end twice and then rolling over and over for almost 40 feet before slamming into a guard rail about 30 feet above a gorge on the side of the road.  He can’t remember if he was on the bike for the first roll or not.


He has some pretty bad contusions on his legs.  The crash bars slammed hard into his right shin causing a softball sized lump and tore the muscle in his calf but no breaks or fractures.  And he somehow badly sprained his left ankle, he’s banged up but… 


He walked away.   


In fact he didn’t even get road rash… he didn’t shed one drop of blood.  His helmet and padded jacket saved him from serious damage and probably saved his life.


But the scariest damage was revealed after they loaded him up and took him to the hospital.  His neck Xrays came back abnormal.  They admitted him and administered a CAT SCAN and MRI.  The consensus is this.  He has what looks like a “hangman’s fracture” which is a fracture that displaces your 2nd vertebrae.  They won’t be absolutely certain until a specialist can look at everything in the morning. 


Here in Germany they don’t speculate or over-explain anything.  I have no idea what this means or where we go from here.  They also do not allow the family to stay in the hospital.  So I’m home… waiting.


In the mean time he has been hospitalized.  They are keeping him in a neck brace and strapped down until they can determine the extent of the damage. 


I will be readmitted at 8am and we’ll go from there.  I’ll let you know what is going on once we have some news.


Please pray for healing, for peace of mind for him (he is understandably nervous) for clarity for the doctors and (selfish as it may sound) that things go smoothly for me as I try desperately to translate and understand what is going on since he’s in a German hospital.


Allow me one moment to remind you that THIS is why we have safety gear.  My heart skips a beat every time my mind flirts with the thoughts of how much worse this could have been. 


Thank you God for his life.


Courtney


 


 

Sunshine, Livestock, and Corn… OH MY!

Yesterday turned out to be a wonderful day to play hookie!  It was sunny and warm with a nice summer breeze and we all took full advantage of the day!


The boys enjoyed a romp in the yard and took plenty of time to play in the sun.


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They even consented to pose with me for a quick picture.  Though getting them to both look in the same direction is impossible!


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While they frolicked and played I took a few pictures of my front garden.


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And one of me in it.


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When I walked around to the back the boys were still playing so I spend a little time in the back garden too!


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When Ryan got home for the day (EARLY *EEK GASP*) we promptly set out for a long walk.


You know what they say,  “Make hay while the sun shines!”


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When I expressed this intellectual little quip my husband looked at me blankly and told me it was a terrible joke.  He had never heard the expression.  While it may be a bad joke (I’m not known for being witty) I stand by the saying being appropriate for the moment!  To prove it I’m attaching the meaning of the proverb as giving by the English School Club Proverb section.


Meaning: It means take advantage of the good times, or get things done while you can and conditions are favorable. You can’t make hay when it’s wet, because then the bales or stacks will rot from the inside.


Along the walk we took some time to appreciate the little signs of fall tucked here and there.


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We also saw a few others out enjoying the bright sunny day!  These little guys live on a farm down the road from us and have provided us with endless fun. 


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I’ve never had a chance to photograph them since we’re usually with the dogs and getting away quickly is in the best interest of these fun little guys.  But yesterday it was just Ryan and me and I had the opportunity to get some closeups!  So meet the four stooges;


This little one is so funny.  His pink nose and lips make him look like a stuffy english gentleman with a well manicured mustache!


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This one looks a little more like a western rancher with handle bar mustaches!


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This guy is by far the boldest.  He runs right up to the gate whenever we walk by and bleats at us.  He’s super friendly!


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His little brother is a hoot too.  He has the personality to go with that little white goat-tee!  (*SNICKER*)


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After spending a little time with the goats we continued on our way. 


And met with another couple of pals! 


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 I get more comments about my cow pictures than I do on anything else so I thought I would give you your fill!


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 We even tried to pose with the cows but of course they kept walking out of the frame!


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We hadn’t been walking for very long before we beheld a cornfield. 


Ever since my Fact or Fiction post, when so many of you were prone to believe I had a genuine fear of cornfields, I have had a need to prove my bravery.


So I handed Ryan the camera, marched to the edge of the field and put my arm in!


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Imagine my surprise when I couldn’t get it back out!


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I struggled in vain!  I could not free myself!


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“HELP!”


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It was no use… I was thrown off balance and dragged into the corn.


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It seemed to Ryan as if I was lost to the corn and he let the grief take him.  He watched the last of me sink into the corn, and then turned to run for help.


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As he turned his back he heard a rustle and a giant ripping.  He turned to see a bare field!  


That’s right, I’m awesome!  No cornfield can defeat me and I have only one thing to those of you that doubt me!


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“Aww shucks.”  (*SNORT* You get it right?)


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After that little adventure Ryan threatened bodily harm to my camera equipment if I didn’t get it out of his face!  🙂


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So to save it and myself I agreed to put the camera away and we enjoyed the rest of our walk strolling along holding hands and talking about what we hope the next year will bring for us!


It was a lovely way to spend one of my last few days here in Germany and a wonderful idea to play hookie!


With that I will bid you Auf Wiedersehen!


Courtney


 

Playing the Grasshopper

Good morning!


I have a thousand things to do today and probably won’t get any of them done and I’m happy about it!!! 


Ryan and I awoke at 6am this morning to watch the gorgeous sunrise.  It revealed crystal clear sapphire blue skies and wisps of fog that clung in the valleys and river beds…  We have the promise of 0% chance of rain, no clouds all day, and 74 degrees!  I’m going outside today and I’m taking my camera! 


There is this little nagging voice in the back of my head that says I’m playing the grasshopper again but I’m shaking the voice off and going out to dance in the sunshine!


You learn to do that here in Germany… it’s like the people are connected to the sun… when it comes out… so do they!  No matter what they are doing, no matter what their plans, when a sunny day arrives they throw all other plans out and find a way to spend the day outside.  They work in the garden, they cut firewood for winter, they walk, they bike, they visit, they eat out of doors.  Anything to soak up the sun!


I know I talk about being excited to move back stateside, being closer to family and the conveniences of America.  It’s true, I’m ready to go home… but I’ll forever be grateful for the opportunity of living here…  It’s been an amazing experience and I’ve learned so much about myself here. 


Here I sit with my morning cup of Earl Grey, making plans to play hooky!  I have only five days left to get ready to leave Germany for a full 33 days but I’m pretty sure I can manage it without today!


So I’m off to chase the sun along with the rest of my fellow townsfolk!


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Auf Wiedersehen!


Courtney

Inundation of Creepy Crawlies

Good morning!


Fall is in full swing here in The Land of Fairy Tales.


The mornings of sunshine and birdsong have been replaced by fogs and mists.  The air is chilly and is tinged with the smell of wood smoke.  It’s rather lovely to tell the truth.  I dread the long cold months of winter but nothing can quite kill the joy I have in the fall.


The downside is as always the inflow of pests in my home!  Ryan and I have dubbed this weekend “The Inundation of Creepy Crawlies!”


Of course I am incapable (no matter how much I might try) of keeping it to myself.


I know they are gross, I know they make your skin crawl, I know you don’t really want to see them but I think you might all be a little like me.  Gross bugs are like a train wreck… you just can’t look away!  And so… I’ll share!


The first intruders were these things…  I have no idea what the heck they were.  I tried to find them on Google but I’ll be honest… After searching for about 20 minutes my skin was crawling and I gave it up as a bad job.  Suffice it to say that they were about an inch long, wicked fast, and when threatened they raised their hind end over the rest of their body like a scorpion…. UUUUUGGGGG.  We killed about a dozen of them this weekend….


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The second and most common pests were of course the spiders.  We killed dozens upon dozens.  We had to vacuum this weekend just to get rid of the carcasses!  Since we were on the warpath we went down to the basement to lay in wait for the big mamba jamba that had threatened us earlier in the week.


You remember… the one in the “burrow”?  We went down and there she was… lying in wait…


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She ventured out on her web eventually… Let me take this opportunity to again remind you of how much I love my camera.  I have a WONDERFUL zoom.  I am NOT this close!  LOL   That big rope her web sits on is a three foot long tug rope of Gandalf’s…  this little beauty was almost a full 2 inches across from leg to leg…


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***UHRRRG***  It’s obscene really…  You can see her bloody great fangs gleaming… just WRONG!!!


I have a picture of her death but I’ll be honest… she is so big that it looks like a frame from a snuff film!  YUCK!!!


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I saved our best pest for last…  This one at least is not disturbing!  We had a frog!  He was pretty calm… Ryan just picked him up with a glove and put him over in the field.  We’re just curious where it came from…


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In other news… I have only six days until I leave.  I fly out of Frankfurt on Sunday morning and will be traveling for about 19 hours.  I can’t wait to get off the plane in Phoenix and get hit by that wave of late summer evening heat!  Never thought I would say that!


With that said I have quite a lot to do this weekend to get ready.  I have to pack and all that rot but I also have to get some things ready for Ryan.  I’ve prepared and frozen quite a few meals but I’m not quite done yet.  I also have to make sure he has everything he’s going to need since most of my time gone will be during end of year and he won’t have time to shop.


I’ll try to come back for one last email sometime later this week.  Until then,


Auf Wiedersehen,


Courtney


 

September EOY


Another photo survey just for fun!!! Keep going though… at the bottom of this there is a REAL post!


~~~~~


The Things I love in Photos:
Answer all questions in photos and when you are done tag 3 lucky ladies!


1. What is your favorite season?

fall2

2. What is your favorite clothing store?

Ross07

3. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

rr

4. If you could have any car, which would you choose?


bumblebee2ua9

5. What is your favorite holiday?


ThanksgivingFeast

6. Who is your favorite Actress?


Angela_Lansbury_1

7. What is your favorite drink?


wcm

8. Do you prefer heels or flats?


Choices

9. Where is your favorite lingerie store?

ebayexplained

10. The first thing you have to have in the morning?


eg

8. One thing you can’t live with out at least once a week?


GoodCoffeeCheaperThanProzac_01

9. Do you prefer to visit the beach or a lake for vacation?


ml


10. Are you a girly girl or a not so girly girl?


I choose both!

Rosie


~~~~~


And so here we are… in the midst of yet another September.


As most of you will remember, September is the end of fiscal year (or EOY) and so the busiest month in Ryan’s job.


He goes from your basic 7am to 4:30pm M-F to going in any time between 6 and 7am and coming home anytime between 5 and 10pm depending on the work load.  Oh and the M-F thing?  It gets thrown out the window.  It becomes however many days he needs to complete the work.


The first week is usually pretty mild and the hours generally remain unchanged BUT due to a few ( <- read SIX) additional duties that have been assigned to Ryan this year (on top of all the regular aspects of his job) this week has already seen several late nights.


One of the nights he stayed late I went in to the office to bring him some food and coffee and to just hang out for a few minutes.  I thought it might be fun to show you his office while I was there!  As you all noticed (the lunchbox) Ryan is just one big kid and his office proves it! 


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Need a closer look?


Ah the best of two worlds… Transformers and Star Wars!


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Oh and let’s not overlook the SpudTrooper with his Ray Gun potato masher!


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The funny thing is that he doesn’ t have everything there by a long shot.  He’ll be moving to a different office come October, so he didn’t want to take it all in and have to move it again.


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He’s such a big kid but it makes things less stressful for him and he of course makes it fun for everyone else.  (Hey Cheryl!  Do you see his Marshmallow Gun back there?  It’s a big HIT!  🙂


My song of the day is Wake Me Up When September Ends by Greenday… in fact it’s the new Contracting End Of Year theme song!  LOL


~~~~~


In other news… I have 9 days until I travel back to Phoenix for over a month!  I have lots to do back home, from a little bit of shopping to meeting my niece for the very first time!  I’m sad to leave Ryan so soon after his return to Germany but the time will fly by I’m sure.


When I return to Germany in October we’ll have only 9 months until we are back stateside! 


Well that’s about it for me today.  Everyone have a great weekend!


Courtney


 

Photo Survey

 Photo Survey…


Use pictures to answer the questions whenever possible.


1. Say something nobody would expect.


 


no TO AVERAGE SMALL


 


2. How old are you?


 


27


 


Going on!


 


28


 



3. What is your ringtone?


 


Polka


 



4. Do you wear glasses?


 


sadface1


 


5. Are you listening to music right now?


 


elvis


 



6. How do you feel about yourself?


 


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Or?


imcoolkit2


 


7. What is your favorite animal?


 


camel


 


8. How do you feel about your family?


 


wall-family_is_everything


 



9. What is the biggest obstacle you’ve ever gone through?


 


infertility_icon


+


strike-top2


+


The-Miscarriage


=


nokids


 


10. Who is your favorite female person not related to you?


 


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11. Who is your favorite male person not related to you?


 


JohnWayne


 





12. Do you feel you are struggling financially?


 



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13. What did you do today?


 


blogging


+


xanga-logo_thumbnail


+


Laundry_Detail


+


Dishes-Giclee-Print-C12177188


+


usps


 




14. Do you think there is one special person for each person in the world?


 



 say-yes


I Do


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whatdoyoufeel230w_0


 


15. Do you have pets?


 


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16. Do you have a job?


 


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17.  What does your ideal house look like?


*SIGH* Pemberley *SIGH* 


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18. Who is your best friend?


 


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19. What is your favorite thing to do?


 


AnneBelovMonicaReading


+


writing_promobig


+


cooking


+


photography


 




20. What is your all time favorite color?


 


red


 


I have to say that this was a blast!


You should do it if you have the time.


Courtney 




The Onset of Autumn…

I love the fall.  For all of my life it has been my favorite season.  Autumn…


My favorite moment of the fall is what I consider the FIRST moment.  The moment you walk out your door in the early morning and smell it on the morning breeze.  That moment came today for me. 


Ryan and I awoke early today (5:30am!) I had to drive him into work so I could have the car today.  When I walked out the door it hit me… that cold, crisp, after-the-rain scent that announces in unmistakable tones that Summer has fled for this year…  I love that smell of damp leaves and pavement… the crisp snap in the air that is absent in the summer warmth… everything about it is lovely!


As I took my first deep breath of fall I couldn’t help but anticipate the changing of the leaves…  The trees remind me of fine ladies from ages long passed who bedeck themselves in jewels and finery for the last social event of “THE SEASON”.  So, too, these trees, like the graceful ladies they are, drape themselves in their finest gowns of red and gold to say farewell to the seasons of green and sunshine.  Every year my heart just thrills at that first breath of fall!


I love to look around me and see all the signs that the seasons are truly changing.


The plants and trees have gone to seed, the crops are being harvested and the vegetables and fruit are almost ready to pick!


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Each little hedgerow, that, in the spring, had impressed me with it’s blossoms, is now heavy with berries of red, purple, blue, and white…  The fruits of the spring finery and the summer sunshine.


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The town we live in is in the last hustle and bustle of the season! 


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Enjoying the last bits of sunshine and the last bursts of color…


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The days have shortened and the twilight days cozy in my warm home with a cup of hot tea and a good book are fast approaching.


With that in mind we have ventured out to soak up the last of the sun with the rest of the village too!


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One thing that the fall brings with it, that I CAN’T enjoy are the spiders! 


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They are driven by the hint of a chill into my home and I can’t keep up! 


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There is nothing quite as terrifying as walking through a doorway to do something then walking back through the same doorway less than 10 minutes later and getting a face full of web… or sitting on the couch and noticing that out from under your feet a roach sized spider is making a break for your hallway!  Eeeeerrrgggg.


Or a few days after vacuuming, you go into the basement to find this! 


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And off to the side of that is a hole that a pipe runs down in the concrete… You peer inside… What the?


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Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!









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Oh no no no no!!!!


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And just when I thought that I had named the worst of the pests that fall brings… I heard the one noise that could knock me out of my pleasant mood.


The caw of a Raven.


For the past several weeks the sounds of the little song birds have become more and more rare until a few days ago I realized that they had become silent.  Their silence makes way for the Raven which overruns this part of the world in Fall and Winter.


A few years of living here has instilled one thing deep within me.  A profound understanding of Edger Allen Poe and his choice of the Raven as a herald of doom, as a bringer of death and cold, as a bad omen.  Just the sound of the Raven’s caw makes my blood run cold…


It speaks of freezing wind tearing down the fields and cutting through all my layers to chill my bones.  It speaks of the absence of green, of song, of softness.  It speaks of harshness, of ice, and of the bitter snow.  It is the telltale sound of winter fast approaching.


In one foul (or should I say FOWL?) moment I went from the excitement of a crisp early fall morning to the backpeddling dread that winter fast approaches…


HOWEVER, I choose to ignore that dread today and play the grasshopper instead of the ant!  I’ll enjoy for just a little longer the bright colors that fall brings us in The Land of Fairy Tales! 


I promised my mom last year that I would give a tour of the fall gardens here… I never did.  But this year, with a new camera, just try and stop me!  So in a last desperate attempt to drive the thoughts of the Raven, and all that his appearance entails, out of my mind and cling to the last vestiges of summertime, I give you…


The Last Hurrah of the Flowers!


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I think this last one is my favorite!  I looks like a fiery dawn…


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I have to say that I’m so glad I got my new camera this past winter.  It has allowed me to capture many beautiful details of all the seasons since and will allow me to have beautiful memories of our time here.


I hope you have enjoyed the glimpse into our fall…  I have only 11 days until I leave for my trip to the states so I don’t know if I’ll see much more! 


Auf Wiedersehen!


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 Courtney