TDF2015.07.14EuropeWurzburg1Mike, Maura, and Tanya in Würburg

Our first stop was Würburg, since it is on the way to Ansbach from Frankfurt.  I scenic city in southern Germany.  We experienced our first taste of the Bavarian style town, churches, stonework, and statues.


The bridge here has quite a few statues with intricate stone work and gilding.



Also, the city center is bustling with activity and very pedestrian friendly which is quite common and much different than most U.S. cities.


The churches are quite old and have amazing stone work.  Some of it is scary in appearance as it was meant to keep evil spirits at bay.  Here’s a good example of that.


Inside the churches are very beautiful.  The detail and artwork is amazing and Würburg is a small sample of what there is to see.


TDF2015.07.14EuropeWurzburg9This is the “residence” at Würzburg.  This is a massive building that the lords and princes lived in back when they ruled these area.  They had to have large residences to show off that they were rich and powerful.



We departed for Europe on a KLM 747, but that was not the plan.  We got up in the morning planning to fly Delta through JFK to Frankfurt out of O’hare.  We had a 3+ layover in JFK, so the thought was even if we get delayed out of O’hare we have a decent cushion to make connection.  Well, our flight out O’hare was delayed and delayed again, so they ended up putting us on a flight to Atlanta to Frankfurt.  That flight had a tight connection and I was definitely not feeling good about the new itinerary.  At this point we had got up early and were ready to roll, but these delays meant we were stuck sitting at home checking flight statuses. Not fun when you are stoked to head out on a new adventure and you are stuck waiting.

Well, the Atlanta flight ended up being  delayed.  Now, I had to call Delta to find a solution to get us to Germany, as the Delta options were gone and we really didn’t want to be delayed into another day.  After some time on the phone I was able to get us on a KLM flight out of O’hare through Amsterdam and into Frankfurt.  After all these changes much to my surprise we were still arriving in Frankfurt about the same time as originally planned.  One bonus out of it KLM has great in flight service and we ended up in comfort plus for the long flight to Europe.  The downside was that I don’t sleep well on planes.  With the frequent trips up and down the aisle by the flight attendants at best I dozed for a bit here and there.  By the time we got to Amsterdam I had not really slept.

We had a tight connection there and we were in our first foreign airport, so it was a mad dash all the way across the airport to catch our connection to Frankfurt.  I was pretty sure we were headed the right way, but the airport was actually fairly quiet and there wasn’t any clear help around to ask.    Also, I was worried about customs with the tight connection, but it turned out to be a breeze and we got to our gate with no issues.  One  interesting thing was the gate system with a bus delivering you from the gate to your specific plane.

By the time we arrived at Frankfurt with all the delays it had been a long day.   Now, we had to connect with Mike and Maura.  I had paid for international service with Verizon when I left, but the phone had issues getting “authorized” on the local mobile system.  I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to use it to contact them.  Eventually, it did connect and I was able to tell them we had arrived.

Then on our way to the baggage claim we made a wrong turn and ended up outside the security area in the wrong baggage claim.  We had to get someone to let us back through a security door where our bags were.  A little more of a challenge given a slight language barrier and the way things are done don’t quite match up with what we are use to in the U.S.  Eventually, we were able to get our bags and meet up with Mike and Maura– yay!

They had only been home a day from the U.S. themselves, so they were making the adjustment to the time zone change, but they made the drive up from Ansbach to Frankfurt.  It is not a short drive, so it was very nice of them both to come and get us when they were just getting back to Europe themselves.



Happy Mother’s Day!

I hope you have a great day. Love you!


My aunt sent me these two photos of me when I was her ring bearer.

I looked a little different a few years later in my own wedding.


I just returned from La Jolla.  Work takes me there from time to time, but it seems I rarely get a chance to enjoy where I am at.  This trip I had a little extra time, so we went down to La Jolla and checked out the sight.  It was a beautiful day.  Well, it was really windy which you can tell by the white caps on the ocean still it was sunny and relatively warm.

This pelican was taking advantage of the on shore wind to glide along the shore.  He passed within several feet of us at a very slow glide.  He was so close I was afraid a sudden gust might blow him right into us.  There were a couple of flocks of pelicans hanging out on the rocks. Plus some sea lions and another flock of black birds I did not recognize.

Downtown La Jolla is a nice place to stroll around and shop when you aren’t checking out the ocean.

You can see all the pictures on this online photo album:


Today was the Cincinnati Redlegs 5k run.  It was a beautiful morning for a run.  The sun was shining and it was in the mid-60’s.   The race is downtown Cincinnati by the Ohio River, so there are some decent views at the start of the race.

Alex and Tanya came down to watch the run and enjoy the sun.  Alex took the pictures of the bridge.  Here she is waiting for the start of the race outside the home of the Cincinnati Reds- The Great American Ballpark.

Here’s the start of the race where you have the bridge and river as a nice back drop.  I like doing runs that have something to offer in terms of location.

Like most fun runs there is usually something unusual to see.  In this case its this racing cow.  The cow was pretty fast, too.

One of the cool aspects of this race is that you finish at home plate in the ball park.  Kinda cool.  So, here’s the cow coming to the finish.  He actually beat me.  In fact he beat a lot of people running the race in about 18 minutes.

Well, I didn’t beat the cow, but was happy to finish in 23:57.  Two seconds faster than the Flying Pig 5k I ran a month earlier.  Overall 387th over nearly 3,000 runners and 27th in my age group putting me in the top 20%. Complete results for the 2009 Redlegs 5k are available HERE.

Alex and dad after the race.


One of our traditions is to open a gift on Christmas Eve.  It is no surprise as to what the gift is… Christmas jammies.

Her are some select photos from Christmas morning.  In order to keep my family from killing in my sleep I am not allowed to post some of the photos taken.

Taylor with charm bracelet: swimmer, cell phone, soccer ball charms.

Alex meticulously opening one of her gifts.   She would start on one corner with a little tear and slowly remove all the wrap.

Taylor checking out one of the dog’s gifts.  She is wearing her Christmas jammies and three scarves she got as presents.

Alex modeling her new sweatshirt from Grandma Pam and Grandpa Tim.

I’m wearing one of my gifts and holding another.


My day started at 2:20am est. I got up early to catch a flight back to Cincinnati. Why you might ask. Well, Alex is swimming at the Ohio High School State Championships. Just my luck the competition is this Friday and I was in Dana Point, CA for work. So, I caught an early morning flight home.

I arrived in Cincinnati just in time for the arrival of a snow storm. Yeah. Once there all I had to do was drive home (40 minutes) unpack and repack. Then take Taylor over to some friends, where she is going to stay while we go off to watch Alex at State. What should have been a 20 minute drive took over an hour. From there is was off to Canton, OH. Thanks to the snow an Cincinnatian’s inability to drive in it the 3:30 drive took almost 6 hours.

Now, I am finally in my hotel (11pm). Tired, but we made it.  We have to leave here at 6:15am to get to the zoo (I mean pool). I sure hope Alex and her relay do well. I have come a long way (2,000+ miles) to watch them.

Wish her luck.

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