A Big One!

To my amazing followers…
I apologize for the lack of updates from the past month. Things just got a little hectic and I didn’t have the chance to organize and upload photos. We’ve been traveling, had guests over from the states, & I’ve been taking photos for others, while still trying to keep our lives in order. (Excuses, excuses… I know, I know!)
Anyway, I haven’t abandoned you guys and I do appreciate the requests to continue updating.

To get through a month’s worth of photos, I’m might skip a few days to save myself some time. No worries though – I’m not cheating you of anything important or interesting that has happened. =)

Okay, here we go!

Andy and I decided to make this night a date night and headed to the Schloss (Castle) Hotel near our house. It’s a nice 1/2 mile walk from our house along a trail overlooking Landstuhl. It looks a little ‘fancier’ than your average German restaurant, but the prices are reasonable and the food was good. One of those restaurants we just wanted to check off our list. Done!

My delicious cup of pumpkin pie soup.Andy’s dinner…
and dessert.

The Clarkson’s housewarming party with the Cardiology department.

Remember the Remo family? Julie was our sponsor when we arrived in Germany and I’ve posted probably more than few photos of her kids on the blog. Spent the evening taking photos of her beautiful family. It was a hilarious time trying to get the kids to focus and play along. Love them.

Sandy, one of the nurses Andy works with, invited us to join her & her husband’s regular Thursday outing at a Belgian bar on Ramstein AFB. It was a neat little experience and the beers were super cheap. A euro + some change for a glass of beer.

Rowdy (Sandy’s husband), Andy, & Wes Clarkson.
Of course, beer causes hunger pains for a lamachun. The boys getting a late night meal from Andy’s favorite place.

My aunt & uncle have 2 really good friends who live in Heidelberg and I’ve kept in touch with their daughter, Frances, through good ol’ Facebook. I met the Sanchez family several times when they lived in Richmond, VA while attending my family’s church. I had to visit them when I found out that Frances was returning home to Heidelberg for a short time before heading back to work in Afghanistan. It’s been years since I last saw them but they were so warm and welcoming. (Andy couldn’t go with me because he was at work.) Frances’ mom cooked us an amazing Korean lunch while Frances and I spent hours just chatting away and catching up.
Before I headed back home, Mrs. Sanchez packed me a bag full of food to take to Andy along with some key ingredients to make Korean food at home (e.g. a gallon of sesame oil). I really felt like I went to visit family that day. Thank you guys! Can’t wait to see you again.
Just some of the food I brought home!
First day of snowfall in Germany! (Didn’t really stick.)
Took engagement photos for this pair at the Castle in Landstuhl, who are due to wed this spring.

After prepping the house for our guests who were to arrive the day we returned from London, we packed our bags and headed out to Frankfurt-Hahn Airport. We didn’t want to risk anything with the airport a little over an hour away and our flight at 6AM, so we slept in a hotel steps from the airport’s doors. This was our first German hotel experience.
Of course, Andy didn’t get a minute of sleep that night because he was so anxious about his boards.

We arrived at London Stansted Airport after a quick 1 hour flight and hopped onto a train that took us downtown to Liverpool Street. From there, we dropped off our bags at our hotel and went out for a few hours before Andy headed back to the books for a final round of studying.
We decided to hit the Tower of London & see the famous Tower Bridge.

(I had some fun playing with the b&w + reds.)
The guys guarding the royal jewels.After a few hours at the Tower of London, we decided to satisfy our sushi cravings by going to a restaurant Rick Steves recommended in his guide book. This day was the day Rick Steves failed me. It was probably the WORST sushi place we’ve ever had and maybe the most expensive!! We were starving by the time we found the place so we didn’t even think twice when the description said it was one of those conveyer belt places. Never again.

They did have these cool water dispensers at every seat – flat & sparking. It was at this moment we realized that we weren’t in Germany anymore. Free water?! Yeah, you almost never get that in Germany.After lunch, we called it a day so that Andy could study and head to bed early.

Board exams day one for Andy.
I walked with Andy that morning to the Pearson testing center, which was only a couple blocks from our hotel, to wish him luck.
Probably not the best photo but here’s Andy heading over there. Looking left & right multiple times to make sure he doesn’t get hit by those crazy left-sided drivers.
Once we parted ways, I decided to go to Buckingham Palace to watch the changing of the guard. Andy had no interest in doing this so it was perfect for me to do this on my own while he was testing. According to security, it was unusually packed that day. I’m glad I got there super early to take some pictures and grab a spot where I could see at least the beginning half of the event.

Here’s a small video clip I took of the guards marching to the palace – http://youtu.be/_PFsTjuhXCs

It started to get unbearable with the amount of people pushing and shoving so after I witnessed the entrance of the guards and headed back to the tube station before it got packed there too.
Beautiful walk back from the palace to the station.

I had an hour or so more to kill so I wandered off to a random stop off the tube (I don’t even remember what street/stop it was) and walked around for a bit. Ended up in Jamie Oliver’s shop. Neat little place where you can buy fresh foods and even cook it in their kitchen with the help of their chefs. Seems like the British love him and his ideas of natural foods. I saw his stuff all over London.

I made it back just in time to meet Andy from finishing his first day of exams. He said he needed a break from studying so we went out to the shopping district to buy tea. We ended up at the enormous Fortnum & Mason store, which carried TONS of tea, biscuits, sweets, and other goodies.

Fresh filling for Andy’s donut.

We stopped by a few other places and looked around a small market.

A restaurant with fresh seafood displayed in their window caught our attention on the way back to the tube station. Since we were so deprived of fresh seafood, it was a must for dinner.
Menu on the ceiling.

After dinner, we called it a night so Andy could get some rest.

Last day of Andy’s exams.
I started my day kind of late so I didn’t do much while Andy was testing. I did go by the London Eye to get a feel for the lines and see if it was worth the 20 pounds per person to ride – which it was not. I was disappointed by the size and the lines were ridiculous. Picture worthy though. 🙂

Later that evening, I had made plans to take Andy to dinner at Seven Dials – Hawksmoor to celebrate.
I knew he would love this place because it was such a man’s place to be – amazing old school drinks & ridiculously good steaks. What else do men need, right? It was hidden in a small alley in the Convent Garden area and the dining and bar area were down a couple flights of stairs. It really made you feel exclusive yet cozy.

Drinking his drink out of a very manly glass. hah. No really, it’s not a martini.

This was their steak inventory for the night in kgs.

OK… this post literally just took me forever to organize and upload.
I will continue this tomorrow!!

Coming soon…
-Our last 2 days in London
-Our week with the Sarah & Jed Moyer
…and more.

3 thoughts on “A Big One!

  1. wow, what a lovely little trip!! so glad andy is done with his exams. mmmm that steak place looks awesome. your photos make me feel like i was almost right there with yall!

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