Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Bernkastel Weihnachtsmarkt and Santa Pictures

Christmas market # 2 for my family was in charming Bernkastel. The village itself reminded me a lot of Cochem, with the shops and market booths centering around the Mosselle River. Parking and the chain stores were on one side of the bridge, the actual event on the other, which made for a pleasant walking tour of the town.

Alex and I wanted to experience this market at night, since we had done the Dudeldorf one during the day. It was really busy that Saturday, due to it being the one weekend St. Nicholas traveled down the river accompanied by "torch swimmers." (Scuba divers with lights trailing behind.) Even with the large crowds, it wasn't unmanagable and the kids were even able to get out of their carriers for a little awhile.

The alleys were on the narrow side, and with the booths set up it made for interesting manuevering, but nothing beat walking down a lighted alleyway and coming out to a row of half timbered houses all around. It was quite beautiful.

Add in the live holiday music, the abundant Christmas trees, and the hot gluwhein in hand and it made for a wonderful evening. I worried when we first moved out here that I would really miss Disney World during the holidays.

I mean, what could match up to the now non-existent Osborne Lights or listening to Neil Patrick Harris narrate the Candlelight Processional? And while nothing can replicate the magic of Disney (for us) these Christmas markets are just as amazing. I feel really fortunate to have been able to experience them in my lifetime. I mean, even if you don't know much about Germany, odds are you are familiar with their holiday celebrations.

Oktoberfest and Christmas markets...that's kind of the only two things I knew about before moving out here.

Alex and I would have liked to have stayed to see the torch swimmers, but Evie had a complete meltdown minutes before they were set to swim. She was completely over the cold. As Floridians, we are discovering that we are not the best at keeping warm in the freezing weather. What I think is a good outfit ensemble turns to pot the moment we step outside.

And dressing toddlers requires a master's degree. How in the sam hill am I supposed to keep Evie's blasted hat on her head?! And Landon...he loves his gloves, but he can't help but slide his fingers out of their respective holes when he's playing. I don't blame the kids, the equipment is cumbersome and bulky and impedes playtime, and it's even worse when they have to get stuffed into the Tulas. They look like sausages, and all I can think about is the scene from A Christmas Story where Ralphie's brother can't put his arms down because of the snowsuit.

Needless to say...I'm still adjusting to the cold.

Yesterday, Santa came to the library, and I dressed the kids up and dragged them to get their picture taken with him. It wasn't as special as last year, since that Santa meant much more, but it's one of those rites of passage us parents always end up doing.
I knew Evie would hate it. She's a shy girl and has issues being left with anyone but Alex or myself. I wasn't concerned about Landon; he's terrible with stranger danger.
Neither kid disappointed.

Landon ran right up to Santa when he first arrived and practically lunged into his lap when his turn came around.

Evie screamed and wiggled out of his lap.

It amuses me that two kids can come from the same parents and yet have completely different personalities. It's like day and night with these two.

What else, what else?
I'm working on Week 5 of my P90x3 journey. It's been going really well, and I kind of love this new lifestyle. I haven't had to change my eating too much, because I pretty much keep to same diet I had when I had gestational diabetes. But all this extra strength and energy I've built? Amazing.
There's workouts in the program I love and workouts I hate, but the best part of it is that it's constantly switching and confusing my muscles. Just when I think I've got a routine down pat, I go to a new one and it kicks my butt.
I love it.
And while I've only lost 3 pounds, I have hit a new set of ten digits and am only 5 pounds away from my goal. So no complaining here.
Healthy lifestyle for the win!

And for a final piece of news, Alex's parents and sister and her boyfriend are coming over here for a visit in March, and we all decided to head to Rome for a few days.

My sister in-law and I picked an apartment to stay at this past weekend, so now all that is left is procuring flights for my group, and then we're all set! Going with so many people will be nice on two counts. It makes everyone's overall cost much less, and Alex and I will have plenty of help with the kids.
We might even be able to go out for a date dinner.
In Italy.

I can guarantee you we never saw that coming 8 years ago when we went Goofy Golfing together for the first time. Our lives have sure taken some crazy turns. Pretty exciting stuff!

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