Friday, February 20, 2015

Home for the Holidays

For Christmas, Kyle and I were very blessed to be able to go home to Indiana and spend the holidays with our family and friends.  It had been a few years since we were home for Christmas.  Our first Christmas in Germany, Kyle's family came to our place, and we had a nice cozy holiday together.  Last year, my cousin Erin and her husband (back then boyfriend/fiance) were here for Christmas, and then we traveled to Indy shortly after.  We are very lucky to have always had family here with us, but it's not quite the same as being home for the holidays!

Kyle and I had been traveling like crazy the couple of months before Christmas.  We didn't have time to see a lot of our favorite Christmas markets locally in Germany, but we did have time to check out one new market that easily became one of our new favorites!  It was in a little medieval town about 45 minutes away called Bad Wimpfen.  They only hold their market for a couple of weekends, so it was crowded, but so atmospheric!  The little half timbered buildings looked like gingerbread houses and yummy smells of glühwein, bratwurst, and sugared nuts filled the air.  It was pretty magical!

We flew to Indy about a week and a half before Christmas.  It was great being there in time for all of the festivities and parties before hand!  We got to catch up with a lot of friends and family that we hadn't seen in far too long!  We got in the Christmas mood at parties with the Guynns, the Joests, the Wilsons, the Nelighs and many of our friends.

The Joests...Nice duck face, Dad!

Olive meets Great Grandmommy!

We <3 the Kruse family!

Hanging out with Uncle Jim!

We were so excited to see our niece, Olive, and our nephew, Isaac!  They change so much every time we see them!  They are just the cutest!

A cute little elf got off the plane from London!

Sadie loves Olive!

Peek-a-boo, Isaac!

Check out Isaac's Deutschland shirt!

Of course you probably know that we have a number of "American" foods that we have to eat when we go to the States!  Some items always on that list are pizza and Mexican food!  We also had some exceptional home cooked meals, like Dad's slow smoked barbecued ribs and Mom's chicken puffs!

We had very nice, traditional Christmases with our families on Christmas day.  It's a lot of fun now that we have little ones to watch with their gifts!  I'm so glad that Cory, Lynn and Olive were also there from London!


Cory was very happy with his own toys to play with!

Kyle just had two weeks off of work, and those two weeks flew by!  He had to leave the day after Christmas, while I was able to stay an extra two weeks.  Kyle wasn't looking forward to going back to Germany alone, but it helped that he had some beautiful snow and Gizmo there to greet him!

I was still in Indy for my birthday and New Year's.  I spent New Year's at a party with our friends Jason and Lydia while poor Kyle was at work!  Since Kyle wasn't there for my 30th birthday, I decided to have a fun girl's night out.  We had a tapas dinner at Barcelona, then went out for drinks on Mass Ave. The girls made it a fun birthday for me!

We had a wonderful time seeing everyone in Indy.  It was such a nice treat being home for Christmas. We look forward to our next trip to the States, when we'll be able to see some sun and green grass!

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