Saturday, November 29, 2008


WOW!!! Salzburg was AMAZING!!! We had to be on base at 4:15 in the morning, and since I knew that if I went to bed, I wouldn't be able to wake up well, I just stayed up all night! I figured I'd just sleep on the bus on the trip. After we got there, I began to second guess that decision. I got to doze a little bit, but couldn't figure out how to lean my seat back and hadn't known we could leave stuff on the bus while we were sightseeing, so I hadn't brought a pillow or blanket or anything. My sleep was very limited. LOL Besides, I was too excited to sleep at first! And then we were in the mountains, which were just beautiful, and I got to watch the sun rise over the Alps!

It was interesting to try and take pictures on a moving vehicle, and I didn't get nearly as many as I wanted. I really was wanting to share the beauty of all I got to see even on the way to Salzburg, but you can't have it all, right? We were on the bus for 2 hours before stopping for breakfast at a very picturesque little place.

They had the best fresh squeezed orange juice! If I had access to that juice, I would drink it every day! And I got to have my very first European croissant! Ooooooooooh, it was soooooooooooooooo goooooooooooood!!! So much better than the American version! It was after breakfast, when we were back on the road that I started to finally doze. When I opened my eyes, all I could see out of the window was white!!! It was snowing! I grew up in Colorado. I've had far more than my fair share of snow. And I think it's beautiful, but only from a distance. Like capping the mountains in a distant range. To actually be in the snow...I have to admit, I don't like it. By the time we got to Salzburg, though, it wasn't too bad. There weren't blizzard conditions or anything, and it was very cold, but I was too excited to see everything to care much! Besides, we were inside for stretches, too, and that made it easier to admire the snow from a warm place indoors. :)

Kristin and I were very happy to find that we got there at about 10:30, which meant that since the Glockenspiel played every day at 11am and 6 pm (we were scheduled to leave at 5:45pm), we would get to hear it! We hung out at the Christmas Market for a little bit to catch it playing, before heading off to the tourism info center. I was able to get some of it on video, but not all of it. I wasn't sure it was working at first and stopped the recording before starting it up again, which makes the video pretty short. :( But it was so awesome!

While we were hanging around the Christmas Market (which was really the whole reason behind the trip, and they had some incredibly beautiful merchandise there!), we grabbed some potato wedges which were phenomenal, and I got a picture of Kristin being silly. :)

(Don't worry, you'll see a picture of me being silly later on, I promise.) :) First we went to the Salzburg Museum, which was so incredibly amazing...there aren't even words enough for the special exhibit they had there this year. This is the 190th anniversary of the carol "Silent Night, Holy Night," and they had the original manuscript on display!!!!!!!!!!!!! I seriously had tears in my eyes. If not for the fact of how crunched for time we were (you can't see as much of Salzburg as you'd like in only 5 hours!!!), I'd have lingered there longer.

I seriously was moved to tears at the sight of it. Oh, and for those of you that don't know, I suppose this would be an appropriate time to share the fact that I am a complete and total music freak/geek. Concert and Marching Bands all four years of high school, Band Council and Jazz Band assistant my senior year and Pep Band for my sophomore through senior years. Music is something that is very important and dear to me, and I'm not just talking about the pop and hip-hop stuff made today that people always claim as their lives. I mean real music. Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn, and on and on. So to see something in person that was composed nearly 200 years totally blew me away. I was able to buy a replica of my own from the gift shop. :)

After looking around the Salzburg Museum, we went over to the Panorama Museum for their "cribs" exhibit. It wasn't at all what I was expecting, but once I saw it, it made sense! LOL There were soooooooo many nativity scenes! This one here was my favorite:

It's made of porcelain!

Oh yeah, and my silly picture (which was taken in the Salzburg Museum):

I'm holding (and pointing to) Mozart Balls. Evidently, if you go to Salzburg, you have to try them...Kristin and I weren't too impressed, actually. I wonder if there are other flavors, and maybe that would change my mind. But these ones had chocolate on the outside, and on the inside, was filled with hazelnut praline, pistachio marzipan and marzipan. I'm thinking it was the whole pistachio part I didn't really like. But I tried it! :)

After the museums, we wandered around the Market a little more, did a little buying, and headed towards Festung Hohensalzburg, or "High Salzburg Fortress." The history of that place is absolutely astounding. We didn't get to really see much of it. We were both pretty worn out by that point, and were hauling Collin's big ol' stroller up and down the steps there. Plus, it was super windy and cold up there! It sits up above the rest of Salzburg.

We were able to get some amazing pictures of Salzburg from up there, though.

After we took our pictures and fed Collin, we headed back down the funicular (such a fun word to say! Seriously! Try to say it!) to find Mozart's birthplace.

I was seriously disappointed that they wouldn't allow any pictures inside. There were some amazing exhibits that I would have loved to share! I even had a moment where I wanted to take some anyway, but Kristin convinced me to behave. ;) I wonder how much more is at the museum of Mozart's residence. We didn't make it over there. Or to the Mirabell Gardens. And, of course, we didn't have the time to do any of the Sound of Music tours. :( But Kristin and I figure we can just go back during warmer weather. hopefully on our own, without the ITT people, so that we can stay however long we want, and maybe go see a concert!

I absolutely loved visiting Salzburg! The people there were so warm, and friendly. It was a very hospitable culture! I guess Italians are too, in their own way. I can't quite pinpoint the difference, but there is a very noticeable one. But I think my husband would like the computer back, so I think I'll sign off for now!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy, happy, happy day!!!

Lately A has taken to expressing his likes with saying, "I love (enter object/activity)!" It's so cute! Last night it was all about dancing. "I love dancing! I love to dance!" Well, he just said one that gave me warm fuzzies! "I love books!" Yay! That's my boy!!!

I've still been making lots of hats, but seem to be losing my steam! (Maybe if I keep yarn in my hands at all times, A will next say that he loves yarn...heeheehee!) I finished 3 more hats and started a fourth, but just have a hard time keeping at it. I'm not sure why. I almost wondered a little bit if it was because I messed it up. I changed needle size on the Claudia hat sooner than I was supposed to, and didn't feel like frogging back to where I messed up, so I just kept going. I have a hard time continuing with a project I know isn't my best work, but I really don't feel like undoing it all! That's so much knitting! It doesn't look bad. In fact, if you didn't know I made that mistake, you probably wouldn't even notice that the trellis work is going to poof out a little bit. I even started a 5th hat (crochet...the 4th is knit) to see if maybe it was the speed of the craft that made me less inclined to pick it back up, but I'm not feeling pushed to finish that one, either. I will keep at it, though. I've got people waiting on these hats! As it is, the last set that was supposed to be mailed out a week ago may have finally just been sent out today. We had to wait for payday. I can't believe that I've made so many, though! I'm sending them out in groups, so I've not really seen it as getting so many done, but the first set I sent out was 7 hats and the second set was 9, and I've finished 3 hats of the 3rd set....that's 19 hats!!! And a in pretty short amount of time, too!

In other news...Ravenclaw did not catch the snitch last night. It's very sad. I want to congratulate the 'Puffs for getting it (especially since they prevented Slytherin from getting it, lol), but I'm not done moping yet. We were so close to getting it!!! ::sigh::

But on a (much) happier note....I'M GOING TO SALZBURG!!!!!!!!!! It's not until this weekend, but I am soooooooooo excited! Kristin and I are going to the Christmas Market there and hopefully do some sightseeing, like Mozart's birthplace. If we had enough time (which I was told we likely wouldn't, unfortunately), we could even go see where parts of The Sound of Music was filmed. That would be beyond awesome! I grew up watching that musical! And after that trip, I've got Thanksgiving plans to really put into play! We're having Kristin and Collin, the Fishers, Karl and Natasha, and Dan all over for dinner! That's 7 adults and 4 kids (that eat table foods...Collin and Riley don't yet...)! And I've got to have a clean house and everything lined up to clarify who's bringing what! It's going to be FUN! So I certainly have enough to keep me busy! Now I'm off to make myself finish that "Claudia" hat...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Back online...again...I think...

It seems as though I'm finally back online. Again. Hopefully, this time for good...

In the time I was offline (and chafing at the fact that I was so out of the loop with the swap) I was able to make a second set of cancer caps to send out. (I just have to wait to send them out until payday...*sigh*) I'm actually quite proud of the results!

I definitely prefer to crochet the hats, as it goes soooooooo much faster, but I love the look of the knit hats a lot, plus knitting takes a lot less yarn than crocheting. Only one of the hats in the last set was knit (the black one).

Here's the first set:

That set has 3 knit hats (the middle row), but to be honest, the middle hat (which, yes, is a Gryffindor House Hat) didn't go out because it was insanely and comically large. It was my first ever knit hat, and I didn't know how big to make it, so I went with the large size. Yeah, it came out large alright! LOL I still have a few more on my to-do list to make...

In other boys are driving me batty! They're constantly fighting and screaming and throwing tantrums. I just wish they had an off switch. Or, better yet, that I had a Vanishing Cabinet so that I could toss them inside it for a few hours at least, to give myself some peace and quiet where I could actually craft without being interrupted for having to break up a fight or settle a sharing dispute. I guess that it's just one of the many "perks" of motherhood. I'll be very relieved when they pass out of their current stages. Especially the 2-year-old.

I was able to send my package for Draco off by the early deadline, last Friday, the 7th. :) I really can't wait until he gets it and I hear about how much he likes it! Or at least, I hope he likes I haven't been able to really do many projects as of late. I made the tree skirt for the US troops that are deployed at the front lines, Draco's handmade item(s), and hats. Lots and lots and lots of hats. In fact, my husband asked me how many I was going to make. LOL I have even told him that I'm making them for cancer patients going through chemotherapy, and he asks "how many?"...the male mind, I guess. It's not like there's a set number of people that are going through chemo. But right now it's time to feed my boys. Hopefully a little lunch will put them in a better mood...

Now playing: Jessica Simpson - A Little Bit
via FoxyTunes

Thursday, November 6, 2008

My deepest and most profound apologies!!!

I can't believe this! Twice in one month! I would have to say that the things (note I said THINGS, not PEOPLE! LOL) I miss the most about the States revolves around the Internet. I miss having a reliable connection. I miss being able to call up their customer service and whining until they do something about it. The same day. We've been offline for almost a week now. The storm that blew in last week, on Wednesday, seems to have been the cause of what knocked us back offline (shortly after midnight, so technically Thursday morning). I went to bed too late to let my husband know about it and wasn't conscious enough when he got up for work to tell him then. He couldn't call Friday because it was an Italian holiday. They were all off. (I miss 24/7 customer service...) He couldn't call Saturday or Sunday. Weekend. Nobody's there. He was too busy at work on Monday to call and got off so late that they were closed before he got a chance to try. So Yesterday, Tuesday, he finally was able to. They were supposed to be getting back to him about it in 48 hours. I have yet to hear anything.

There was a blip on Monday (after I borrowed a friend's computer on Sunday to play catch up) where I was online. Checked my e-mail, started my "sites" (in the order of least going on to most...myspace, facebook, cafemom and then ravelry) partway into Facebook and got booted back off again. That was maybe a five minute reprieve. I was so mad when I got kicked back off that I actually wanted to break something. I crocheted instead. :) So today I'm at another friend's house (whose computer is compatible with my portable hard drive so I could post my back blogs about Halloween preparation and my trick-or-treat swap spoiling) posting while I can for this week's credit in case I don't get another chance before the week is up. *sigh* I hate this. I am SO out of the loop in the swap and SO behind on quizzes and reading blogs and threads on the Ravelry group....I HATE it!!! Grrr!!! I HATE that Italians are so flipping LAZY about this kind of thing! (And they really are!)

I haven't even really been productive with this time I've been offline. I was the first couple of days, but now I'm just too busy moping and griping about the whole situation to do much of anything. lol I think my boys have rubbed off on me...I'm sulking. LOL Even my productivity rate for knitting and crocheting has taken a plummet! You would think that with all the time I've not been online, I'd at least be cranking out the hats, but that's not even the case! Sure, I've made a few, but it's nowhere near my usual caliber. *double sigh* Here's hopping that I have my Internet back a home soon and get back into the groove of things!!!

Monday, November 3, 2008


So I got booted offline. Again. I think that this time it was due to the major storm that rolled through the area. It rained for about 3 or 4 days. They just have yet to get my Internet back up at my house. I swear I blogged about the amazing Trick-or-treat package I got from Bevin Rae and about Halloween festivities this past week, and I saved them to my portable hard drive so that I could post them when I came over to my friend's house to use her Internet, but her computer is evidently not compatible with it. I can't get the computer to recognize it. :( I will get them up as soon as I can, but will be without Internet for I don't know how much longer....I hate this...