Our fancy hotel and resort experience ended when we left Greece, but our vacationing and fun most definitely did not! Our next stop was Germany to spend some quality time with Simon's family.
I was completely excited because i had really only gotten to spend time with them on two occasions: the first when they came and visited Simon at school in the states, and the second was our wedding.
The first days of being there we explored Wunstorf, spent lots of time talking with his parents, and looking forward to the weekend ahead when even more family would be arriving for our little wedding dessert reception his parents were having for us. One of my favorite things I've experienced in my European travels is the different markets you can go to and pick out fresh fruits, vegetables and in our case, flowers for the party.
Here is a peek at all of the amazingly delicious cakes we had at the reception.
It was a lot of fun to meet so many "new family members" and I feel so blessed to have had that opportunity!
The weather was, except for a few rainy days, pretty nice and much much cooler than our recent days in Greece and to take advantage of that we were able to do a lot of fun day trips. We rode the train to Hannover and went shopping, went to an awesome amusement park, had a wonderful lunch with Kyle and Susan Bratcher and their family, and biked to Steinhuder Meer only to name a few.
While at Steinhuder Meer, we boated over to the island with the castle (somehow i managed to not get a picture of the castle) and the views from the island were so pretty!
This is us and the view from the top of the castle... mostly just us.
Simon showed me all the different stores that were typical for Germany and that gave me a more personable conception of the culture and daily life. I tried to soak in as much of the language and culture as i could while we were there.
We were able to spend some time with Simon's old friends as well as Hannes and Lea, his brother and sister who were all in town for the reception. It was nice to just relax and get to know everyone, trying to take advantage of our time with them.
During our last week we, along with family from all over Germany, went to Filzmoos, Austria to celebrate his Oma and Opa's 80th birthdays.
The location was beautiful, right in the center of snowcapped mountains and green Austrian hillsides.
We played an astronomical amount of Yahtzee, rode on a sommer rodel bahn, and looked and laughed at hundreds of old pictures.
We sat in a little go cart type thing as we inched up to the top of the sommer rodel bahn
and then screamed the whole way down
Yahtzee moment- one of many. It was much more cut throat than it looks.
It was a long weekend and lots of semi-chaotic family moments but definitely a fun opportunity to celebrate in a beautiful place.
Our visit, in one sense, seemed to fly by but as our return home neared we felt the weariness of traveling set in. We were both really sad to leave because we know that chances to visit will be few and far between, at least for the foreseeable future, but the time there was filled with memory making and quality time so knowing we had made the most of it made leaving a little easier.