Wednesday, March 21, 2012


I miss this.
Traveling around Europe.
This is the last getaway we took before we left Germany.
If we had a three or four day weekend, we would load up and the car and find a new destination. Usually, we would decide on Thursday night where to go. We'd pack and load the car on Thursday morning and then drive there. Many times, we did not have hotel reservation, knew only a little about our destination. We'd get there, find a hotel, and start walking. And those turned out to be the best weekends. The ones with no plans.
This is a picture from our last weekend getaway. Cologne, Germany. We spent a couple of nights in a hotel near the Dom and walked and walked and walked all weekend.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

We Left Europe

Well, the time had to come eventually.
We had to leave Germany.
Although that happened almost two and a half years ago, the Fitters are still very, very sad.
And we did move to a wonderful new vacation spot, Hawaii.
However, living in Germany was such an amazing experience for us. And all three of us talk about it over and over again. We soooooo want to go back.

Although I haven't used this blog in a long time, I've decided to revisit it. Just because we don't live in Europe anymore doesn't mean I can't continue to write about our experiences.
So, that is what I am going to do.
We will relive all of our favorite moments of living and traveling in Europe.

Get your GPS'es. We are going for a ride!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Fitters are Back!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here is the Christmas letter Matt and I created. I printed off a bunch of copies and used up all of my printer ink. Alas, they are still in a pile in my secretary. If you click on the image, it should make it a full size image.
I resolve to keep our family blog up-to-date from here on out for anyone who may actually read this!!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Our Tax System Explained

I don't take credit for writing this. It's from a forwarded email I just received.

Our Tax System Explained: Bar Stool Economics

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:
The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that's what they decided to do.The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. 'Since you are all such good customers,' he said, 'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.' Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men - the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?'They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.
And so:The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).
The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).
Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.'I only got a dollar out of the $20,'declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man,' but he got $10!''Yeah, that's right,' exclaimed the fifth man. 'I only saved a dollar, too. It's unfair that he got ten times more than I got' 'That's true!!' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!''Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison. 'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!
'The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill! And that, ladies and gentlemen, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.
David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D.
Professor of EconomicsUniversity of Georgia
For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.

An Early Thanksgiving for the Fitters

Because we will in Ireland for Thanksgiving, we decided to have and early feast on Sunday. With our neighbors, the Keelers (with whom we will be travelling around Ireland) we enjoyed a small version of Thanksgiving with a six pound roasted Turkey breast, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, salad, dinner rolls and Pumpkin Pie. I missed having stuffing and cranberry but we can make that up later!
We are thankful for our friends near and far, our family far away, this beautiful country we get to live in, and wherever the Army decides to take us next.

Snow Much Fun!

Last Friday, our Girl Scout troop held a sleepover in the Hut. Amy Keeler and I have 15 very energetic 8-11 year olds in our troop and we like to do a sleepover about every other month. We get lots of badge work done and have a great time getting to know the girls better and letting the girls learn more about each other. This time, we worked on the "Looking Your Best" and "Stress Less" badges. We did facials, as you can see below, played with hair, played Bunko, and cooked all of our own food. During the facials, we had the girls lie down for 10 minutes while we practiced elevator breathing from the stress less badge. They were so funny all lined up on the carpet! They loved, loved, loved the facials!

MK gets a special hair style from her friend Morgan.
While we were having our sleepover, it snowed ALL night! Hohenfels received about three inches of snow and it continued to snow through the rest of the weekend. MK came home and got into her snow gear to play in the first snow of the season!
Here she is pretending she is sitting on a cloud. This is right outside of our front door.
MK and our neighbor, Delaney worked for about two hours building their snowman! In this case, it was a Minnie Mouse snowwoman. When they finally came in, their faces were SO cold. MK has played in the snow every day and she thinks that it is her right to receive a cup of hot chocolate the minute she walks in the door.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Things I Love About Bavaria

We will be moving back to the States in less than a year. Although we are ready to move back and enjoy all the modern conveniences again, like 24 hour grocery stores, 7-11's on every corner, hundreds of TV channels to choose from, American restaurants! There are so many things about Germany we are going to miss; Like hopping in our car on Friday and spending the weekend in another country. Or how the Catholic Faith is celebrated everywhere. It's beautiful here!
I just wanted to show you a few things that our family loves about Bavaria. Hotels, buildings and homes around Bavaria are not afraid to show beautiful images of their shared Catholic faith. This is an image found above the door of a hotel in Ettal, Germany. Firehouses usually have an image of St. Florian, patron saint of firefighters, painted on the side of their buildings.
There are shrines all over the countryside in Bavaria. Shrines to Mary, shrines to Jesus, Stations of the Cross. As you are walking along, it is not uncommon to come across several different shrines during your walk.

I love the flowers that hang from every building in Bavaria during the Spring and Summer and early Fall! Above is a hotel on the Chiemsee Lake. Below is a Gasthof (kind of like a guest house) just outside of the Vilseck Army Post. The photos do not do either of these buildings justice! The Gasthof Stroll is a historical building in the Vilseck town. On a side note, all of us Americans start out the Spring season by planting numerous geraniums, petunias and other hanging flowers but ours are never as beautiful and full as the Germans. I have since learned their tricks; first, they use a weekly flower food. And then they use rain water and not water from the faucet to water everyday. Faucet water is so high in calcium here in Germany that all those minerals just kill our flowers. But the Germans will set a large barrel under their drainpipes to collect rain water so they can water their outside plants and flowers. There are many more things we love about Germany and Bavaria and I will save those for later posts so you can journey with us this Winter!