Saturday, October 8

Garmisch Getaway

Ryan loves our Bavarian Alp getaways to the Army's resort called Edelweiss. He craves his mountain fix, the American amenities at the hotel and particularly a really yummy American style filet mignon. So it comes as no surprise that Ryan is on their email list with special offers like the half off deal they advertised in August. We called the cousins to see if they'd like to rendezvouz there on Oct 3 when the kids would all have German Reunification Day off school. They were game! Hurray!

Fast-forward a couple weeks when Ryan saw how burnt out I was from sleepless nights and suggested I go check into a hotel with the baby to recoup. So sweet an offer, but the only problem was that I was too far gone to even imagine orchestrating replacing myself for a day and a half! I got close a few times checking local hotel options and my calendar to figure out the best days to be gone but it was just too complicated and expensive. I enjoyed teasing Ryan about taking him up on the offer when the evenings got hairy.

Then it dawned on me -- why not just book an extra room for me and Jake at Edelweiss?! After some sweet-talking on Ryan's part with the hotel, he was able to make it happen. Hallelujah!!!

To get the rest I needed/wanted, I should have disappeared for the entire trip but didn't want to miss out on time with the cousins and the stuff we wanted to do with them. We did our usual where the adults enjoyed dinner in the restaurant while the older Carter cousins watched the little ones up in the rooms with a pizza feast. Poor Camilla's arms and back got a workout from soothing Jake who became pretty fussy for them! It's so wonderful to have these girls around!!!

The following day we enjoyed the buffet breakfast, pool time, a hike up Partnach Gorge, and some good ol' fun on the rodelbahn {alpine slide}. It was fun to hear about the rest of the cousins' summer and how the beginning of the school year was going. We got a beautiful, sunny 70 degree day to enjoy the changing fall folliage around us on the walk up the gorge. Camilla shot these pics of our time.

Jake was zonked out the entire walk in his happy place.
Kid has a serious receding hairline!

The kids' reward for being happy hikers was those chalky candy necklace/bracelets. Ryan asked Easton if he could "look at the time" and tried to take a big bite out of the large clock piece. Easton wasn't too happy about that and wrenched free as we gave Ryan a hard time for teasing him. Easton recovered quickly but went to work on that piece so Ryan wouldn't get another go at it.

I actually can't remember what we did for the rest of the day after we parted ways with the cousins. We still had another night and day at Edelweiss and I was disappearing until 11am the next day. What did I do with my freedom? Read more than 2 pages of my book at a time w/o passing out from exhaustion, feed Jake, sleep, shower and get completely ready for the day - I even put on eye-liner! I seriously can't even remember the last time I did that, it's been years! It was glorious!

See, I've never been as excited about our jaunts down to Edelweiss as Ryan. I am more rested by days off at home where the kids can wake up, watch cartoons, and feed themselves breakfast while I sleep in behind closed doors. At Edelweiss, the kids wake up and we have to be up because they are hungry and on top of us. Then we have to get everyone dressed and ready to be seen, hobble down to the buffet breakfast where they demand specific favorites which you can't get fast enough for them, only to have them eat a few bites here and there before slinking off to watch the lobby's kid movie. By the time you've finished your meal and take them up to the room to get swimming gear on, they're hungry again.

The restful part of my getaway was not having to participate in all that. Thank you, Ryan!!! My little man Jake didn't cooperate too well with the sleeping part of my night off, but look at this face! He's easily forgiven!

This family picture means a lot to me. Ryan hates to wait around for things to happen - it kills him. When we met back up at 11am, he'd already loaded the kids into the van. He knew I wanted to take a family picture while we were down here but I don't think he figured on the process. By the time we'd gotten the kids' shirts changed, hairs put in some semblance of order, scouted out spots to take the picture, put bandaids on knees that got ouchies, and soothed tantrums, it was time to feed Jake. A full hour later and we were ready. Ryan was so patient with the process even though I knew it was seriously testing him as he paced. Man, I love him!!!

Afterward, we headed into downtown Garmisch because we'd always wanted to but never made the time for it on previous trips. We meandered, got the kids lunch and then some yummy gelato and then quickly browsed some fun Bavarian clothing stores. The best part was just walking the pedestrian zone and enjoying the atmosphere on a gorgeous day.

Cutest old man in his regular Bavarian attire. It's cool and familiar to me now to see the well-worn lederhosen paired with the dressier jacket and hat.

We love the Bavarian murals!!!

What's not to love about this cute crew! They'd just passed a young couple who did a double take counting the kids with Ryan. It was funny to witness from a distance. When I was younger, a bigger family didn't seem like such a big deal. Now that I've got four young kids, I often question my ability to keep up with them and look back and smile at how challenging I thought it was with just one baby, then two young boys, then three kids. Four is definitely working me right now! Tamsyn told me I'm in the hardest stage with them all being so young. I'd have to agree at the moment although there's much to love about it all the same.

A happy girl with her proud daddy who's man enough to wear the baby harness and give his wife a break. I'm one lucky girl!