Sunday, November 23, 2014

Munich

Our weekend continued with a overnight in Munich.  It was nice to get out of the countryside and be in a big city for a little bit.  According to the Lonely planet travel book,  Munich was settled by Benedictine monks, and the city derives its name from the medieval word Munichen meaning Monks.  While visiting Munich we stayed at the Hotel Uhland and used the cities subway and tram system to get around, it was fun to figure out were we were going and what exit to get off at. Although it probably added a little bit more stress to getting where we wanted to go.

We Visited the Residenzmuseum.  A Residenz is a suitably grand palace that reflects the splendor and power of the ruling families of the area.  There are Residenz in many of the cities here in Germany, just as there are Castles pretty much everywhere.    The Munich Residenz was home to the Wittelsbach family, who lived here from 1385-1918.

Bikes are everywhere in Europe.  

 Outside the Residenz



 Inside the Residenz. This is the dining hall the family was obsessed with greek busts.

 In of the wings in the Palace.  My iso on the camera was off so sorry about the blurry pic

 German food:  It is so good (according to Jake).  This is lunch Nurmberg brawts, sauerkraut and a pretzel!!! 

 St. Peterskirche (church). Here you can pay 2 euro and climb up the bell tower.  It was awesome super skinny stair case and narrow halls to get to a 1.5 foot platform that has a 360 degree view of the city.  I recommend doing this if you go to Munich.

The View of Marienplatz (Square), old town square with Altes Rathaus (old town hall).  the Glockenspiel is on the front of this building.  It is in the spire and is part of the clock and at certain times of the day 43 bells and 32 figures preform two historic events.  The top half tells the story of the marriage of the Duke Wilhelm V to Renata of Lorraine. In honour of the happy couple there is a joust with life-sized knights on horseback representing Bavaria (in white and blue) and Lothringen (in red and white). Of course it is the Bavarian knight which wins.  The bottom half tells the second story of Schäfflertanz (the coopers' dance).  The myth is that the coopers danced in the streets to "bring vitality to fearful dispositions" during the plague which devastated Munich in 1517.  Unfortunately we were not in the square at the right times.  So here is a link to a video on youtube. the tour guide is pretty funny but the video is good. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Dachau Concentration Camp

This was our first concentration camp experience and it was humbling to see the poor conditions that the prisoners had to live in.  Built in 1933, Dachau was the Nazis' first concentration camp.  It was built to house political prisoners.  By it's end there were more then 200,000 inmates and between 30,000- 43,000 were killed here.  Words can not express the emotions that were felt here.  It is so hard to understand the systematic killing that took place here.




 International Monument designed by Nandor Glid, May 2007

 The role call grounds and the barracks for the prisoners


The crematorium 

Garden of Ashes: made from the ashes from the crematorium

If you would like to see the visitor website for more information here is the link

This is also an excellent link to get the full tour of the camp:


Sunday, September 7, 2014

The Germany Adventure Begins!!

So on August 14, 2014 our charter bus arrived at the Grafenwoehr, US Army Post.  It is a lot smaller then our previous assignment at Ft. Sill, OK, but, with all the downsizing of army posts Graf is growing and there is a lot of building going on.  The hotel where we are going to be spending about a month is new and nice.  The gym is new and nice and the area is surrounded by amazing forests.

Regensburg

Our first weekend here we decided to rent a car and get off post.  We braved the Autobohn (yes people do drive fast) and drove south about an hour and a half to a city called Regensburg. This was a great place to start this adventure with.  It was fun because you could really see the Christian influence on the city.  While we were there we went to The Dom St. Peter, one of Bavaria's grandest gothic cathedrals.



Regensburg got its name on the map because it has the first stone bridge to cross the Danube river.  It was being renovated when we were there, but we were able to walk across the bridge and take some photos.

 Drendle and Lederhosen


 Schottenkirche St. Jakob: is a church that was build in the 12th-century is considered a supreme example of romanesque architecture.  It is Preserved behind a glass wall in order to protect it against environmental decay.

 Walking the streets of Regenesburg.




Moved to Germany!

So it has been awhile since our post has been updated.  Whitney has had a lot going on and knowing that it takes some work to write a blog post, I (Jake) thought that I would try and write a post to catch everyone up to speed.

First off, we have had a crazy, amazing, and adventurous summer.

In July we started the summer off by graduating from the Army 12 month AEGD program at Fort Sill, OK.  I will miss the clinic and Mrs. Billings (my assistant).  During this year of extra training each of the 8 residents had to preform procedures in each of the different dental specialties.  This includes: Oral surgery, Periodontology, Prostadontics (crown and bridges), and restorative dentistry.   I enjoyed the program and gaining skills that will help me take care of my patients.  My parents took the graduation as an opportunity to visit the illustrious travel destination of Oklahoma one last time before we left for Germany.  We had a blast doing the graduation and hitting all the must-do's.  We went to Meers for a cut your own ribeye steaks.





After graduation, we flew out to Utah with the parents; it was nice to travel with family.  Utah was amazing.  It was so fun to visit everyone, even Mandi came out from NYC.  We were able to hit the lake with the boat, swim at Cherry Hill, have a tinfoil dinner and hike, and have a princess slumber party with the neices (Makena and Marli)!



Whitney had surgery in Oklahoma before we left to go to Germany.  Everything went well and she healed with no complications.  A big thanks to Luann for coming out to help as Whitney recovered.

And last, but definitely not least, we had one epic flight to Germany.  Sounds easy enough right?  We took the military flight and we had to have a port-of-call in Baltimore.  We had a 8 hour layover before we boarded onto our 8.5 hour flight to Ramstein Air base.  We were lucky enough to enjoy a hotel stay in Frankfort before taking a four hour bus ride to our newly assigned post, Grafenwoehr Army Base, Germany.


Let the New European adventure begin!! Even though we miss our families and are sad to be so far away, we are excited about the experiences that are to come while we are in Germany. Coming soon we will post about our first outing in Germany accompanied by pictures.  


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Wish'n and Hope'n: The Infertility Journey Begins

It’s January 2014.  In December I turned 31 and Jake and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary.  I haven’t written a blog post since April 2013.  It’s been one heck of a year since last April and I haven’t really known how to feel about it or how to feel about our new lives since moving to Oklahoma, which is why I have mostly remained silent on the blog.  Blogs are for writing happy things and telling happy stories. Although I’ve had happy moments since April 2013, overall I’ve been trying to find my equilibrium again, which has been somewhat of a struggle at times.  To summarize those few months since April, Jake graduated from dental school, commissioned in the army and started his four weeks of officer’s training before we moved to Ft. Sill, Oklahoma in July in order for him to start a one-year residency.  


Of course these are all wonderful things that I am grateful for.  However, since that time I have struggled to find out how I fit in in a place with a culture seemingly foreign to me while Jake is continuing his career. On top of undergoing all of these changes we’ve also been trying to get pregnant.  These circumstances don’t always make for smooth sailing and I’ve definitely had my various moments these last several months.

The New Year opened up with news that hit me especially hard although it’s likely that it would seem trivial to an outsider.  After more than two years of being off of birth control and then seriously trying to conceive for 6 months I finally went to the doctor in order to get a referral to see a specialist.  Even the visit to the doctor to receive this referral was troubling for me.  In order to make that appointment I had to acknowledge to myself that I am not going to be able to do this on my own.  This was after an extended amount of time of wishing and hoping that seeing a fertility specialist would not be necessary.  Then, as the new-year approached I received the information that I had been referred to a specialist in Ft. Worth, TX.  That is three hours away.  Immediately I started to hate Oklahoma and bemoan the fact that I lived in a place that didn’t have the medical care I needed closer to home.  After trying to conceive for more than two years it felt to me like God didn’t want me to have a baby. I was confused and hurt.  After contemplation I have realized that at this point any sort of roadblock that will prolong my ability to get pregnant is going to be painful to bear.  Every obstruction only delays the strongest desire of my heart for what I feel I have already waited so long for.


I know that am only in the beginning of this journey.  I don’t mean to compare my feelings or my situation to anyone else’s.  I know that people that are dealing with infertility have had many more difficult situations to face than myself.  What my experiences thus far have taught me is that infertility is an emotional battle.  If getting a referral to see a specialist that is three hours away can lead me to tears, I can only imagine the pain a person must feel further into this process.  At this point, I don’t know what the future holds and that is really the scariest thing of all. This post isn’t a plea for sympathy, but it is a plea for sensitivity.  Any time anyone asks the question about us “When are they going to have kids,” or “Are they ever going to have kids” it just puts salt into a wound that grows a little bigger month after month.   I also don’t write this with an intention to push people away.  I don’t want to scare the people closest to me into avoiding the topic altogether.  I want people to ask me how I am and how everything is going because even though it’s hard to admit it, I am desperate for an empathetic ear. Obviously, it is my hope and prayer that Jake and I will be lead down a path that will bless us with the opportunity to start a family.  It is my hope that you will pray for us also.  

 

Monday, April 22, 2013

So Proud of This Man...

I am so proud of Jake Wilding today! I got to be there when he presented his thesis to the board. He did such a great job and it's good to know what has been occupying so much of his time for the last three years :-). I must admit that in retrospect, I feel bad about all the nagging he's gotten and the questions about "WHY RESEARCH IS TAKING SO LONG!" I can honestly say that no matter the future outcome, all the time he has spent on his research has been worth it...
 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Can't Wait!

Jake told me we got a much anticipated item in the mail today.  I came home to this!  Can't wait to hit up the trails in Havasupai with my love!