Sorry for going AWOL on the blog - lots of things have been going on here. First I got sucked into a book so completely that the family went hungry, any needlework got neglected, the laundry piled up.... you get the idea.
I really enjoyed this book thoroughly, although it deals with the end of the world as we know it, and sort of leaves you hanging at the end. It is supposed to be a trilogy with another installment coming out in 2011 and in 2012, and I am really looking forward to reading more.
My niece from the US was here for 9 days and we were busy being tourist during the day, and she was busy being a 16 year-old in Europe at night. She is a really nice, intelligent girl, but teens will be teens and she partied hard. I told her that if her hard partying ways got back to my very protective brother I would post some very incriminating pictures of her on facebook...
I have had a bit of the blahs, where I am staring at my stitching rather than doing any of it.... my very dearest friend for three decades ( before she just went silent without explanation for several years, not responding to e-mails - there is more to that story, but I will spare you the agony, suffice it to say I did some suffering and wailing), her younger sister suddenly passed away. It was such a shock, and has made me reevaluate my cold shoulder attitude towards her ( she lives here in Germany). I have spent quite a bit of time thinking about our time together - from ages 13 - 16. We had so much fun together, and I spent a great deal of time over at her house. I really can imagine how they must be feeling, and I am so sad for them.
Speaking of friends, I have another friend who really has me in a funk. I considered her a very close friend for about 8 years, but ever since I moved she has made no real effort to keep in touch - most of it is initiated by me. I have called and e-mailed, but she has not bothered to answer my last e-mail. She most certainly never calls. It makes you doubt yourself and the friendship you thought you had. It's a bummer.
I did manage to finish "The Evil Serpent Sampler" by EftH. I decided to fill the peacock eyes with eyelets instead of cross stitches. I choose my own HDF colors and stitched it on a piece of random 40 ct Zweigart fabric. It was a fun & quick stitch.
I also made a pair of jammie shorts for Olivia. She loves them, and I have to take them off of her to wash them. Its quite gratifying to have someone really like what you made for them. I really liked the gnome fabric, its very happy.
We also went on a trip to Bavaria and Austria. Our main objective was to visit the fabulous castles that King Ludwig of Bavaria built. We saw Neuschwanstein ( the Cinderella castle), Linderhof and Herrenchiemsee Castle. The last two were smaller replicas of Versailles because the king was quite enamoured with King Louis XIV. I will cover those in a seperate post - so many pictures.
We also went up to the top of the Zugspitze - the tallest mountain in Germany. I have a problem with heights so it was a bit stressful for me, but the whole thing was amazing. We took the cog train up quite a ways. At the end station we got off, saw the glacier and did some sledding on the ice. Since my kids have grown up in Texas, they were hesitant to go sledding until I went down first... so, without further ado here is the Zugspitze.
|Taken from the parking lot of the cog train. The Zugspitze is the peak right by the cloud.|
|Olivia & Mia reading up on the Zugspitze while riding the cog train|
|The boys on the train|
|Checking out the sledding slope - glacier ice ahead.|
|Its fun going down, but its a long way up|
|The peak is getting covered by a cloud|
|On the gondola ride up - NOT looking out the window|
|Ditto for Alex - see how close the face of the mountain is?|
|The view down - its a loooong way down|
|The actual peak - see those crazies out there??|
|Enjoying some coffee & hot chocolate at 9800 feet|
It was a fun trip overall, we had decent weather with only one day of rain. Speaking of weather, it has cooled off tremendously with lots and lots of rain. We do have 4 days of sun ahead of us, and I am looking forward to it. I know all of you suffering from the hot, hot summer in the States would love to have some cool weather and rain, so I won't complain. I will try and get to the castles tomorrow, if not on Friday - they were fantastic.
Take care until then.