Sunday, June 28, 2009

Happy Birthday Mom and Dad

This weekend we celebrated my mom & dad's 80th birthday. We had a grand celebration at my sister's house, my parents live next door. All my brothers and sisters were there as were many of the grandkids and great grandkids. There are 7 children, 30 grandchildren and many,I don't want to count them all, great grandkids. It gets harder and harder each year to all get together so this was extra special. We always take a funny picture and convinced my mom to bare her thinning hair (after her next chemo treatment she will probably lose it all). The funny one is always the best picture and that is usually the one you see in our houses. My mom and dad are wonderful parents and we all own them many thanks.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Back to the Mother Country

It is hard to imagine why anyone would leave Switzerland. But my grandfather did in 1918, he didn't have a great life there. His mother was a widow with two small children she couldn't support so my grandfather was put in an orphanage at age 8 and was there until his mother remarried, age 10. He wanted to be an architect and there were only old buildings in Switzerland (I love the old buildings)so he left and came to America by way of Ellis Island.
Steve & I are so blessed to be able to travel. We love going to Switzerland and renting a little apt. and living there for 2 weeks. At night when we came home from a day of hiking in the beautiful Alps, the dairyman would be driving his cows down the middle of the village main street after milking. We had to dodge fresh cow poop, but somehow we didn't mind. Everyday we would pick a new place to hike and everyday the views were breathtaking. Paris was wonderful, but Switzerland is all Gods work. I wish you could all see the beautiful views we saw everyday. I wish my grandfather was alive so I could share with him the love he had for his beautiful country. I still have the music box he brought back from his trip there when I was around 10. We rode the trains, buses and boats and had a wonderful time, I love how the Swiss people put the dates on their houses of when they were built. The house in front of the one we stayed at was build in 1766, and it is beautiful. Our apt was on the 2nd floor of the home of the Bruggers, a lovely older couple who spoke very little English but willing to help any way they could. It is good to be back, but I we are thinking how soon we can get back.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Paris in the Spring

It is sometimes hard to believe as I sit here eating the last of my Swiss candy bar that I was really in Paris for a week. Eveyday life kicks in real fast when you get home and you find yourself back to the same routine, only with a little jet lag thrown in. But here is a recap and some pictures. One of the things I read in my trusty Rick Steve's tour book was dont let anyone offer to take you picture in Paris. Apparently it can be a tourtist scam and the would be picture takers run off with you camera, so I only have one picture of Steve & I together. Of course I took plenty of other people's picture, I must look trustworthy.

We flew all night and arrived in Paris around 7:00 am, by the time we got our bags and figured out how to get from the airport to the hotel, a train ride and metro ride and a short walk, it was around 10:00. Luckly the hotel would hold our bags until check-in at 1:00pm. We had tickets for the Open Air bus ride, a double decker bus, around Paris that stops at all the main site and you can get off and on all day. It was a good way to get oriented to the lay out, we just didn't plan on it raining off and on all day. We sat on the top with out umbrella's for a while but it was became too windy and wet, which wasn't a bad thing when you are going on about 5 hours sleep in a 32 hour period. The following days were better and the weather was really pretty good, not to hot, but I was suprised by the humidity. We went everywhere: Notre-Dame Cathedral, Louvre (the biggest in the western world) & Orsay museums, Sainte-Chapelle (built from 1242-1248 with 6,500 sq feet of stained glass and more than 1,100 different scenes from the Bible), Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Napoleon's Tomb, Rodin Museum, walked down the Champs-Elysees a couple of times (our hotel was right in the middle), Sacre-Coeur basilica, Opera Garnier, Orangerie Museum, St Sulpice Church (featured in The DaVinci Code), we went to the Sunday mass and stayed for the organ concert after, it was great. We walked through the Left Bank, went underground to the Catacombs which contain the bones of 6 million Parisians, it was bizzare, it goes on the about 1 1/2 miles. And last of all, I think my favorite, Versailles, home of kinds and queens of France. We went on a Saturday when the fountains are going, it was awesome! I have never seems so many fountains in one place going off at the same time, it was just beautiful. Well, I could go on much longer, but who wants to read a long blog. Hope you enjoyed the pictures ( I took over 500 and edited them down to 300, don't worry you didn't see them all)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Jet Lag, but we're back!
After being gone for 3 weeks, one week in Paria and 2 weeks in Switzerland, we arrived back home Friday night. What can I say, our trip was awesome (I wouldn't call it a vacation, I came home ready for a rest). We have been on the go the whole time. We started in Paris on Thursday, May 14 after a 3 hour flight to Dallas then a 3 hour flight to Boston then an over night 6 hour flight into Paris at 7:00 am the next morning. I can only say Thank goodness for flying First Class. I think that was just as much a fun part of the trip . We loved the seats that went flat into a bed and your own personal T.V. that played about 40 movies and video games, I loved the little kit they give you with the sox to keep your feet warm, the ear plugs, night shades, tooth brush, hand lotion and chap stick.
The flight home wasn't as much fun. Leaving Zurich at 7:00 am, flying to London (only 1 1/2 hours). London to Dallas, 9 1/2 hours, a 4 1/2 hour layover in Dallas and finally a 3 hour flight to Fresno, home by 9:30 p.m. It was daylight the whole time. We were awake for about 22 hours, so this is just a short post, with more pictures to follow. Glad to be back, I missed everybody, my grandkids, people speaking Engligh and your blogs.

Taylor wants to ride in the truch

At Mt. Rushmore

Devils Tower Wyoming