Monday, December 23, 2013
Friday, December 6, 2013
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Friday, August 23, 2013
Today looks like a good day for a road trip! We are on our way up to Long Island, NY to visit my parents for the weekend to celebrate my mother’s 65th birthday. The trip is about 370 miles, which is relatively the same distance-wise as going from Oftersheim to Hamburg, Germany. Usually this trip takes 6 and a half to seven hours… unfortunately we hit traffic in many places and it took over nine hours to make the trip!
Lots of traffic does not make happy passengers! On one of our pit stops, we went to Wendy’s (a fast food restaurant). Marvin was shocked at the size of the large drink!
After such a long time stuck in the car, the kids were very happy to be able to go swimming in Grammy and Fossil’s pool.
They were even more excited when Grammy said she was ordering pizza for dinner! There is something special about New York Pizza. Second only to the pizza that Marvin had in Italy, he said this pizza was the best he ever had.
Bryce was super excited to have his favorite chicken parm hero from Little Vincent’s too!
We even taught Marvin how to fold his pizza so he could eat it like a real New Yorker!
Today was another work day for me since I planned to take off Thursday through Monday in order to take Marvin and the kids to Long Island, NY to visit my parents as well as have a full day in New York City.
My mother-in-law was nice enough to take the boys to the National Marine Corps Museum. http://www.usmcmuseum.com/index.asp
They have interesting displays and a great tribute to the heritage and history of the Marine Corps. Bryce’s great grandfather (his Mom’s Mom’s father) was a Marine and fought in the battle of Saipan that is pictured to the right. The picture to the left is an aerial view of the museum grounds.
Marvin took a lot of pictures while he was here, someday I’d love to see them!
My mother-in-law is a history buff and loves touring all of these types of museums. She even dressed in red, white and blue to tour the museum! The kids told me it was such a long walk outside of the museum to this famous horse. They were hot by the time they got to it and Marvin didn’t want his picture taken.
My parents will celebrate their 45th wedding anniversary this coming September and I made them these t-shirts to wear. They go to Disney every year and they are so cute holding hands walking around the park :-)
Later that evening we had a group function at one of the host families’ home. The kids had a great time cooling off in the pool and learning an American pool game “Marco Polo”. After working up an appetite playing in the pool, the boys devoured some snacks while waiting for dinner to be served.
The fun started right away on Marvin’s first full day here. I had to go to work so I could take time off in order to take the kids to New York City later in the week. My mother-in-law Betty was nice enough to entertain them during the day. She took them to downtown Fredericksburg to some of the historical sites and then they went to the movies.
When I got home from work, I took the kids over to the airport where my hubby Keith was giving aerial tours to all the kids in the exchange program. Here Marvin waits his turn chatting with Summer.
Bryce proudly shows off the gracious gift from Marvin’s family so Schwetingen was properly represented.
Another host boy, Connor, looks on with Bryce & Marvin as they all await their turns in the air.
It was a beautiful day for flying!
Now it’s Bryce & Marvin’s turn to go up into the beautiful blue sky!
I think Marvin liked it! You can see the smile on his face from all the way across the runway!
So glad my hubby was willing to share his talents with the group. Everyone seemed to have a great time!
We’re already starting to really like Marvin. He is sweet, polite and funny. Perhaps we’ll keep him :-)
After flying, we went to our favorite Mexican restaurant and we found Herbert!
And it looks like Marvin has a new hat… (on top of his other new hat – say hello to Towelie)
And he certainly enjoyed the (virgin) pina coladas that we had with dinner. Another fun filled day comes to an end and now we’ll get some rest.
The day had finally arrived, we’ve waited weeks for him to arrive. Every few minutes I’d refresh my screen to see if his flight from Frankfurt, Germany had landed safely. The plan was that our group organizer, Cindie Kelly, was to meet the students at the airport in Washington , D.C. and transport them to a more local site. All five host families met at Wegman’s this Sunday afternoon and anxiously awaited their arrival. Before he set foot in the room, just about all we knew about this 15 year old German boy was that he liked soccer and oreos and from his Facebook posts I knew he had a sense of humor. Everything else was still up in the air.
We were pleasantly surprised at how well he spoke English! I breathed a huge sigh of relief that at least there wouldn’t be a huge communication issue.
We settled in quite quickly. That’s one of the blessings of social media: through Facebook, I had communicated with both of his parents as well as directly with him and Bryce had too. I am so thankful for that.
The boys jumped right into the fun (literally)…
I had done some pre-planning in anticipation of the language difference and had post its in various places throughout the house with both the English and German words to indicate where things were housed. I also thought he’d like to know our schedule, so I posted that prominently in the kitchen. This is where I would find Marvin each morning – checking out the schedule for the days ahead.
Although there is a 6 hour time difference, he stayed up surprisingly late the first night. I think it was all the excitement. When he was finally ready to crash we had Bryce’s room set up for both of the boys and Marvin passed out here…
A great ending to the first day of a wonderful adventure!
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
We were so fortunate to have the opportunity to host a student from Germany this summer. We did lots of fun things with him as part of our family and it’s an experience none of us will ever forget. As an added bonus, Bryce will get to go stay with Marvin and his great family next summer. Over the course of his two week stay, we learned lots about him and his family and we are very excited about the next chapter in this friendship developing across the pond. Click the link below to see a slide show of some of our fun!