Effiel Tower

Guten Morgen!

After Berlin, we finished off our trip with Paris, France. We were there for four full days, but  we didn’t see a whole lot due to the holiday lines  (tower for Notre dame was estimated to be a 4 hour wait!). This morning I want to share with you our pictures of the Eiffel Tower.

 
              
Someone was REALLY excited when we finally made it to the top!

The very tip-top floor was closed, but we were able to walk to the level below that. We planned on going ice skating until we realized how tiny the arena was- definitely more kid-friendly than adult-friendly.

Have a lovely day my friends~

Christmas Eve in Vienna 

Have you ever been on vacation for the holidays? This was my first time, and although I missed my family, it was refreshing to get away from the stress of the commercialized American Christmas. 








Christmas Eve we started off by visiting the Art History Museum. No words…this place was exquisite! They even had a café in the middle of the museum where we had a quick lunch and coffee date . We spent the majority of the day exploring this museum and spent the rest of the day wandering around. Eventually all of our walking led us to St. Stephens Cathedral.



Around 5pm we returned to the hotel and got all fancied up for our Christmas Eve dinner. The dinner was served in buffet style and we ordered a bottle of wine to celebrate the occasion. I wish I could have taken more pictures, but I didn’t want to be seen as the “rude American”. We gorged ourselves on dinners with a round of appetizers, main courses and dessert. The dinner as a whole took about 2 hours- very relaxing and my kind of meal.


To end the night we attended midnight mass at St. Stephens Cathedral. I was dismayed to find that even the service was bit of a tourist spectacle. People were videotaping and taking pictures. It was absolutely insane and I wish people had more reverence. On the other hand, the ceremony itself was beautiful and they provided English translations of most of what was said. We meandered back to the hotel around 2am, tired but excited to return to Germany the next day!

Munich, the Grays & Gluhwein

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Now this will be my third time returning to Germany and I feel this will be my last beloved trip to my favorite country.

My fondness for the German language and the country began my freshman year of high school and I’ve been on quite the adventure since. To this day, I still am not fluent in German (to my utter dismay) even though I’ve completed four years in high school and various refresher courses at the University of Washington. I am in the infancy stage still with responding to people, however, I can understand and piece sentences together when I hear German.

My goal this next year for 2015 is to improve my German and I know it would be more economical if I could teach myself, but I’ve never been a self-learner. Instead, I excel in courses where I have a physical teacher to challenge my skills, so online courses will not do either. Indeed, looking into programs is one of the first things on my agenda when we return home.

Now onto the details of the trip thus far…

It’s no surprise that during the course of our traveling day to Europe I got terribly sick with cold chills, nasal congestion and a sore throat. Every time I travel international I end up catching something, so I was anticipating that I would. Additionally, the days before, Sam got food poisoning and I had an awful migraine, so given the circumstances I’m relieved we made it here in generally good spirits.

We spent the first portion of our trip with our wonderful friends, the Grays. What a jovial pair they are! There is no end to the laughter and joy when the Grays are around. We arrived at Hotel Schlicker in Munich with a warm welcome from our friends. They were expecting our arrival and warmly greeted us from their fourth story window when they caught a glimpse of us. I hadn’t slept a wink on the plane ride, so I was running on mere fumes. I jumped into the shower to wake myself up and off we went to explore Munich. Samuel and I are very familiar with Munich because we spent 6 days there in the summer of 2013 for our honeymoon. We were only there for one night and wanted to experience the highlights with our friends.

Dinner was spent at the infamous Hofbrauhaus. Samuel and I shared the pork belly and sausage sampler along with a bier and a Radler (beer with lemonade). The Grays had beer as well and each had an order of the pork knuckle. Whenever you visit Germany you are guaranteed to have your fair share of pork! This particular night it was packed. The main beer hall was warm, muggy and smelled of sweat, so we ended up finding a place adjacent to the main hall (less crowded and we could hear each other better).

Afterward, we explored the Christmarkt in the Marienplatz. It filled the square and I felt it was the perfect size (not too big and not too small). We had gluhwein and sweet crepes with bailey’s, banana and nutella. Sehr lecker. A bonus was there was carolers the entire time singing from the balcony. What a very merry way to start the holidays.

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Honeymoon Journal Series (Part 8)- Mürren, Switzerland (Day 2)

Switzerland, Switzerland, Switzerland…the land of fresh milk and fresh air. We are now in day two of our Switzerland adventure and we find ourselves in the small mountain town of Murren. Like I mentioned in the previous post, it took a whole gondola ride to reach this tiny town and overlooks the mountains (the monk, the princess and the ogre). We planned on having a relaxing day due my pulled calf muscle. We wanted me rejuvenated and able to hike down Shilthorn the next day.

Naturally because we’re Crissingers we started off with an amazing breakfast. It was a truly fantastic European breakfast experience. Blumental hands-down had the best breakfast out of any of the hotels on our honeymoon.

With our bellies filled, it was time to start the day. We headed down to the local bike shop and were distraught to find that they did not have a bike that fit me. Wondering what we were going to do, the employee mentioned they might have some returned bikes in the town below. Hoping for the best Sam and I took a ride down the gondola and discovered there was a bike that fit my size that had been returned. What luck!

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I’m not a poet and not very good at describing extraordinary beauty, so here is some scenic shots from our bike day.

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We visited Trummelbach Falls, which has rushing waterfalls inside caves.DSC_0220 DSC_0228

Biking and visiting the Falls were the main event of Day 2, so we headed back to Lauterbrunnen for some lunch! Along the way we found a couple of fresh water springs and picturesque places for photo ops.

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At last, when we got back to the hotel it was time for bed and a perfect time for a bottle of wine. Cheers!

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Tschüss~

Alyssa