February 28, 2010

Weekend off

We had our weekend off . . . . and I just finished watching the US lose the gold medal hockey game. BOO!!!! Anyways we visited one of our guys parents, the Ingrams, one night. Then we spent a day in Brussels with our friends Luke and Stephanie. We ate great food, laughed, found some Tin Tin books in English for Titus, and just enjoyed being away from it all.

Here we are right after eating mussels in Brussels at Chez Leon! Luke is loving me taking pics!

Dee and Steph at a market in Brussels. The weather was great.

February 24, 2010

Time to get some aggression out

I don’t know how to say this other than bluntly; everyone, staff included, is kind of starting to wear on each other. Don’t worry about us, veteran dorm parents have told us that this is really normal. It’s February, spring break seems far away, it’s gray and cold and rainy, and it’s a normal result of living in community. Tempers seem to be a bit short, chores are getting done worse and worse, and big school projects are due right around this time. So what we needed was some good old-fashioned dodge ball! Sunday night we went to the school and had 45 minutes of running around and laughing. My former job at Grace trained me quite well and the guys were impressed with my skills!

February 20, 2010


I'm about to go all crazy for Germany . . . if you've read some of my other posts than you know I love the States and miss home at times, but Germany does some things better! I think they do community better than anywhere else I've ever lived. They always have a little festival or community thing going on. Tonight was my favorite by far. Every year the staff at HBR take the seniors up the hill behind the house and goes to one of the local “Fasching Fires”. This is a German holiday/custom around this time of year. Most of the local villages have a fire somewhere up in the hills and in the vineyards and our neighbor Heinz is in charge of the one in our area. So we go to support him and give the guys a cultural experience. We give them a couple of euro’s for a coke and a sausage, but the highlight of the night is the flinging of burning wooden discs into the vineyard. The idea behind it is that your sins are burnt up and tossed away and you start fresh. So basically the entire town of Holzen (little town near our dorm), goes up into the vineyards, hangs out, has a bite to eat, has a drink by a blazing inferno and laughs at each other as they try and fling burning wooden discs down the hill! IT IS REALLY FUN!
I will say this, my first 4 tries were all duds . . . but on my 5th and final disc I shot one out and then held my pose like a championship golfer. Check out the pictures and the video . . . they need to add this to the Pumpkin Fest!

Here is one of the discs. You stick it on the end of a long stick and then put it in the fire and let it start to burn, then you pull it out swing it like a giant golf club and hit it off of one of the ramps and it fly's through the air for what seems like forever!
leaving the dorm at 8:00 at night with our discs and homemade swinging sticks!

In the video the old guys disk is a dud, but someone just down the hill hits one at the same time and you see it go flying. The second lady demonstrates what happens when the disc is on too tight. Basically my first four tries looked like the elderly gentleman's, and then my last one was PGA tour worthy!

This video will give you a sense for how big the fire was . . . FYI, Germans love fire and they have no safety rules really, it's GREAT! We could see this fire burning from the dorm, which is about 3/4 of a mile away. It was just a nice red glow on the hill and once we got up to the fire, we could look out and see two other towns fires burning in the distance.

February 14, 2010

Happy Valentines from Titus and Addie

Titus and Addie enjoying Valentines day crafts


Last night we had an ode to the Olympics in the form of “Couch Gymnastics”. I CAN ASSURE YOU NO ONE GOT HURT! We piled a bunch of pillows and couch cushions on the ground and then the guys took turns jumping over a couch and landing in the pile of cushions. Ross B was eventually given the 2010 couch gymnastics gold medal! I think I have about 300 pictures from this event. It was pretty awesome and ultimately ended up with a giant dog pile and a game of king of the hill/pillows!
Along with that, this weekend was the final home basketball weekend. Our guys played marvelous and lost a close one on Friday night and then recorded their first home victory in 2 years on Saturday. Friday night was “Senior Night” and our very own Will M. was escorted out onto the court by HBR RA extraordinaire, Brandon!

The Gold Medal jump . . . Danielle the former gymnast is covered up by Ross's foot. She is there on the judges panel:
I wish everyone could meet this kid. Hangil is the funniest guy you will ever meet. He is trying to jump into me as I take his picture.

I don't know how I ended up on the bottom of the dog pile

The 2010 Couch Gymnasts!

Congrats Will!

February 12, 2010

Make a Cheesy Face

I started snapping pictures today, when Titus and Addie decided to be hams! I love my kids and this was a great moment of innocence and laughter. . . . of course this was about 15 minutes after Titus just flushed his first toy down the toilet . . . so moments of innocence and moments of frustration. If they look a little pathetic, it's because they both have colds and runny noses. No Titus is not rockin a German leader mustache (can I blog his name in this country?) . . . his skin is chapped under his nose . . . and Addie, well that's just bed head!

Valentine's Day

There is a BFA tradition that on valentines day (or this year, the Friday before valentines day), all of the guys make hearts and the girls try and get them. If one of the girls gets a guy to talk to her, then she gets his heart. So it's a game to see how many hearts they can get. The guys have the task of making their hearts, so we had some made from cardboard, paper (last minute guys this morning), bread (if you look closely Mark's on the right is made of bread), a straw, plastic, etc . . . . We even had one guy who used his heart from last year, here's to hoping he can go two years without talking to a girl . . . .not sure if that's a good thing!

February 10, 2010

I can't believe it

Today I got a phone call from my German bank "Volksbank", they needed to confirm my phone number so they could give it to the Polizei (Police) in Feldberg! Someone handed in my wallet and now I am going to pick it up at 8 am tomorrow morning. I was pretty pumped . . . except for the fact that I just finished cancelling all of my bank and credit cards yesterday, but you know if I didn't cancel those cards my wallet never would have been found. At least now I will get my baby picture back and cheesy pictures of Danielle in High School (you can't reproduce those babies)!

The man, the myth, the legend

Austin is officially an HBR legend. . . . he got away last night during his creeking! I don't know how it happened, but it was pitch black and he blew out the candle on his cake and then it was similar to something out of a movie, with everyone grabbing and fighting and when the lights came on, Austin was on all fours crawling out of the dining room and everyone else was in a mob in the middle of the dining room. They chased him and he got away and hid out for about 4 hours. Turns out he actually made his way back in the dorm and was hiding 2 doors down from his room. However, being the lovable dorm dad that I am, I stumbled across him . . . . and then proceeded to sell him out and tell the seniors where he was. Nevertheless, before the seniors found him, the sophomores had the chance to show a video to everyone of him sneaking back in the building and taunting the seniors. What a night! Austins creeking is quickly working it's way toward mythical status!

February 7, 2010

Crazy Weekend!!! ARRRGGHH!

HBR continues to roll along and it’s crazy to think it’s already February.
Highlights from the week/weekend:
Our week in HBR and at school was marked predominantly by the news the students received on Monday morning at school. The students were informed of two students being removed from BFA due to sexual misconduct. Neither of the students was from HBR, but they were both seniors and well loved by a majority of the school, so it was a shock to everyone. I have been impressed by how our guys have handled the situation; there hasn’t been too much anger aimed at the school or the administration. Most of the seniors were sad, but felt the school was fair and felt that the two students involved could get the best possible care with their parents.
Saturday was jam packed! Brandon and I took 11 guys up to Feldberg to ski. It’s about an hour exactly from the dorm and the day was beautiful. I’m pretty sure it has been cloudy and foggy in Germany since about October 17th, but yesterday there wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the temperature hovered right at about 0 Celsius, the perfect ski day. We left at 8:30 in the morning and when we got there it was really crowded, but the sun was shining and there were snow drifts taller than the van. It was a bit of a nightmare trying to get rental equipment and tickets bought, but by 10:45 everyone was on the hill having a good time. Some guys were experienced on the slopes and a number of them were first timers. By the end of the day everyone was exhausted and glad they had come. The only bummer on the day was when we got back and I realized that I had lost my wallet. We are still trying to locate it, but the thought of canceling bank cards, getting new ones, getting a new license, etc. really scares me. We got home at 5:30, just in time for me to start grilling for dinner (Italian marinated Chicken).
Today was another long day. We went to church this morning and we let the guys stay up, if they would like, to watch the Super Bowl tonight at midnight (IT'S CURRENTLY 2 AM AND I'M TOO NERVOUS TOO WATCH WITH THE STUDENTS, COLTS JUST LOST THE ONSIDE! ARRRGGH!)
In honor of the Super Bowl tonight we had a very special dorm fellowship at 11:30 pm. It is our first ever “Super Bowl Snack Extravaganza” (great name I know). All of the guys were broken into teams of 4 and they had to create a Super Bowl snack. Friday they turned in their recipes and Danielle and Anna went out and shopped for everything and tonight after dinner they made their snack. I’m pretty sure some of our guys have no idea that a Super Bowl snack is something equal to chips and dip or pigs in a blanket. Three of the recipes that I have saw were . . . Bruschetta, Smoothies, and Korean pancakes! Quite the international flair to the superbowl this year!! We have about 50 people watching upstairs right now, (COLTS JUST SCORED 17-13! GO HORSE!)