Sunday, July 27, 2008


So, I was thinking that maybe I ought to a get a few of the pictures from our recent excursions on here! I hope you enjoy them!

We went to one of the largest medival knights tournaments in Europe. Here is a pic with Logan and his friend Haeden and some knights! It was a great overnighter!

We went to Legoland the next day and had so much fun! The boys had a great time on the rides. Here Bryan and Logan are with their friends Brent and Haeden. They're the three grey and one orange spot:)

We went to Austria to do some hiking. Here is one of four areas of the Ehrenberg ruins. We hiked two mountains to see them!

Here the we all are at the gate to one of the ruins....

Jess and I at dinner....

Setting out on the trailhead at Fussen, Germany

Some of the stairs that we had to take to go up...and up...and up!

Okay, so I went crazy with the pictures! Just so many to choose from. Actually, I'm sure there will be more to come:)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Finger status

I thought I'd give an update on my little finger since several have asked about it. It's crooked but getting more functional every day. I have months of therapy ahead of me....we are talking progress in millimeters as far as range of motion....but we are coming along! The most amazing part is the fact that I have had no pain. Not even from the very beginning. PTL for the little things! So the whole process has been a bit crazy. I've got one brace that extends my finger and then another one that I'm supposed to use for flexion. Somewhat contradictory! My OT asked me if I would be willing to do one more surgery and I said no....unless it is outpatient and that's not going to happen with the European system. It's amazing to me that I have spent a total of nine days in the hospital all for two inches of my body!

Anyway, I'm thankful that, for the most part, I have a gotten along pretty well. I thank you for your prayers!

Here is one of the only pictures I have of me with my brace on. Too bad you can't see the whole thing! It was quite the item!
The windblown look on Omaha Beach!

Saturday, July 12, 2008


If you weren't aware already, I'm training for a marathon. I know, I know. That's about the craziest thing EVER! But I am. It's not very pretty most of the time, after all this body really isn't a runners body, but the training is moving right along. We have a "team", 4 of us training together (there used to be 5 but someone ended up pregnant:-) ) and that makes it much easier to get out and hit the road. I accomplished my longest run ever today. I covered 12 miles. I say covered because I wasn't able to run all of it. You see, I'm playing a bit of catch-up in the training cycle. After time off for shin splints and then my surgeries, I fell behind and am not quite back up to where I would like to be. I have about 2 months left. We are running the Lake Garda marathon in Italy. Always room for support personnel. We need all the support we can get!

Friday, July 11, 2008

I just received a disc full of pictures from my week at Woodbadge last month. It was one of the best training experiences I have ever had....and I had a great time with my new Bear 'brothers'! I thought I would share a pic of all of us!

LtoR: Bones, Kid, DC, Papa Bear (originally known as Mac!), myself (Jaws), our Fearless Leader Jack and Dino

And while I am showing scouting about a few others!

Logan laying the wreath at the Normandy American Cemetery in France.

Bryan 'hanging' around while doing the Klettersteig----a climbing sport popular here in Europe.

Concentrating on foot placement....

Hey, that's me doing a little rapelling!!! I'm hooked! Too bad I cut my tendons shortly after doing this. It will be awhile before I get back on the ropes!

It's the Small Things....

We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same. ~Carlos Casteneda

Coming to the downside of what a good friend refers to as the "really long business trip" or RLBT (good acronym for you in the nature of our lifestyle!), I have come to realize that it is far to easy to fall into the miserable category. Some days (weeks and/or months) don't quite go the way we had planned. This is true for the last six months of my life. Decidedly, I have been in a bit of a funk. Thankfully I am seeing the sun again....I am done being glum and want to be fun! After all, my better half will be home again by the holidays! And, although I fell into the miserable category for FAR too long, I think I have succeeded in making myself stronger in the end. Everyone around me may have a much different perspective---HA!

So, it's through all of these challenges that we must decide which path to follow. Misery or strength....bitterness or peace. I've decided on the latter for both counts. And it's the small things in life that make it easy to do so. It's only a matter of recognizing the small things. Like typing this with purple stained fingers from picking blueberries in the woods behind our house this's the small things that make us smile:)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Beginning

After much internal mental debate, a little prodding from a friend or two and encouragement from a family member to get in touch with everyone more often than say, once a year :), I am beginning a journey into communication via just one of the abundant possiblities available to do so. Hmmmm, a blog. Not something I would have ever thought would become a part of my life. And yet, here I am. And, maybe, there you are, reading my thoughts. I hope that, in the very least, the elusive Smith family will be not quite so elusive any longer.