Before Christian left (Winter Weekend Away; Finding my Peace; HE IS HERE!), I wanted some photo’s. Truth be told I wanted memory-cards full of photo’s, and I have 512GB memory cards. I take great joy not only in taking pictures, but editing, looking at them, scrapping with them, printing them out for my photo wall. I love photo’s.

Last Thursday was a beautiful, sunny, warm afternoon. I had a friend over, showing off my beautiful boy, and together we all hiked into the Black Forest.  Wait! Before you get too impressed at my hiking skills, the Black Forest is 100 yards from my house. I’m really not that good a hiker, but I do live in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

We only had to hike past a couple of houses to break out of the village and into the wild.  However. Several of those houses had new, and not so new, babies.  You know these things when you live in a small village, and living in small village in Germany means quiet hours.  In our village it’s between 13:00 and 15:00.  You know you can be loud (ie., vacuum in your own home) when the church bells ring, signifying quiet time is over.

Sadly the church bells hadn’t yet rung. It was 14:45. And my four, and my friends two, kids were on their worst behavior EVER!  They were skipping, hopping, hollering, tackling each other in the middle of the street, picking neighbors flowers and laughing! I was so embarrassed.  Why can’t my kids ever walk quietly?  Why can’t my adult, sneak-up-on-people-for-a-job, Marine walk quietly?

I sighed, watched all the curtains pulled back as people peeped out, waved sheepishly and decided the hell with it.  Let my kids have fun. Let them laugh, play, whoop & holler.  Soon enough my beautiful boy would be back in the field. Soon enough he would be back in the sandbox.  It was worth babies waking up a little early that day.

Once out of the village and at the edge of the forest, they didn’t stop. They remained goofy. Crazy. Loud. Wild.  All we had was grass, dirt, some trees & a pile of logs. And they had fun.  I’m wondering why I’ve ever bought any toys, games, books.  All they need are trees & logs & open space. I spent an hour chasing (literally, gasp, running) after kids to MAKE THEM POSE FOR ME!  Christian even had to climb a tree to get a giggling Dane down and be part of the group photo.  At the time I was honestly aggravated.  A picture. I wanted one picture. ONE! Or a million… you know, whatever.

I finally corralled them all in one spot, gave my friend my precious baby, my camera, and told her to point & shoot. I got one beautiful, perfect-to-me, photo…. and a zillion beautiful, amazing, perfect pictures of my kids being kids. Even my big, grown-up, bad-ass (he insists I include this) Marine.


Brother & sister ♥


My beautiful boy


I snuck in one photo with the dimple(s)!


My favorite dorks


It’s good I have one girl. Everyone should experience at least one daughter.


I DID IT! Everyone’s in the photo!