3 months ago
11 March 2014
The past couple of weeks we had a lot of fun family time because I watched my niece, Amika (Michael's sister's daughter) while her mom went out of town to visit our other sister in law who recently had a baby. And then we found out that my sister, Michelle, and her husband, Jake, and their kids, Lizzie, Sadie, & Robbie were coming to stay at my parents' house for two weeks. So we had lots of fun.
Amika had a great time playing with our dogs and jumping on the trampoline. And I got my girl fix (I did her cute hair -- I'm not used to doing anyone's hair except my own, but I'm finding with little girls they need their hair done at least a couple times a day). :)
And Amika got to go along on all sorts of adventures, like the big annual Cub Scout Blue & Gold dinner, driving carpools to school, family home evening at Nana & Papa's house, volleyball, Courtland's joy school preschool class at our house, and brunch at the Pancake House. The funny thing was that after being with us for a day or so, Amika was my little buddy. She cried uncontrollably if I left her (even when I had to leave her with Michael). But hey, it's nice to know you're wanted, right? We had a good time.
And we tried to spend as much time as we could with Michelle and her family while they were here. We hung out at Nana & Papa's house, the kids had a lot of fun playing in the back yard, they got to have a movie & ice cream cousin night,
Lizzie & Sadie got to come to Courtland's joy school class at our house one day, my mom and sister and I got in as much Bohemian genealogy translating as possible, and the three of us also got to go to a little genealogy conference one Saturday where we went to a great class about translating Latin records.
Michael and Jake and our older boys got in lots of board games, and Jake tried his hand at some archery in the back yard. We had lunch dates, the moms got in a little shopping, and swimming in the pool (kids in the pool, grown ups in the jacuzzi), and Courtland and I enjoyed a fun day out at Balboa Park with the cousins while the older boys were at school.
And of course Courtland and Lizzie are still inseparable buddies. Courtland asked me multiple times a day when we could go to Nana's house to play with Lizzie & Sadie. (And we noticed, too, that Courtland has had a little growth spurt lately -- last time we were together he and Lizzie were exactly the same height, and now he was a good 3 inches taller than her).
I think the kids were all worn out by the end of these fun-filled couple of weeks!
Now I'm just trying to catch up on all the little details of daily life that I postponed as much as possible while family was here . . .
Posted by Stephanie at 2:21 PM
06 March 2014
I think it is so great that Michael can give our kids stitches if they ever need them! Today Courtland sliced his hand on a metal piece that was coming loose on a croquet mallet. It looked pretty bad, but I super glued it up and it looked great. Too bad the cut was right between his thumb and pointer finger so that part of the hand moves so much -- needless to say, the glue didn't hold for long. So when Michael got home from work he took care if it right away. Courtland was a trooper -- he was nervous, but didn't even cry.
Posted by Stephanie at 6:09 PM
20 February 2014
We've been having a great time with my parents at their cabin in Mammoth while the boys have had this week off school. The only thing I wish is that Michael could be here enjoying it with us -- he is saving up all his vacation days for a Bradshaw family reunion in the summer so he couldn't take the time off work.
On Monday we did a short afternoon at June Mountain, a smaller ski hill about 20 minutes from Mammoth where kids 12 and under ski free. Courtland skied for his first time that day. He has really good balance for never having tried it before, but he got tired out pretty quickly. On Tuesday my mom and I took Kolby, Lijah, & Camden to Mammoth, and by the end of the day Camden was able to ski on his own. The boys were doing well, and we had a lot of fun. On that day, with all three boys skiing pretty well on their own by the end of the day, I got a glimpse of how much fun skiing might be in 5 years or so when all of the boys are really able to ski.
Yesterday my dad and I were going to take all the boys for another afternoon at June, but when we got there it was closed because of high winds. We ended up going to a thrift store in town where I picked up a couple pairs of skis, ski boots, and helmets so now we have enough for all the boys and we don't have to deal with ski rental equipment anymore (woohoo!) Today we had a grown up ski day, and it was fun skiing hard with my parents. And we are planning on taking the boys out skiing again the next couple of days. So that should be lots of fun, especially for the older boys who are really looking forward to getting out on the mountain again.
Posted by Stephanie at 10:58 PM
15 February 2014
We enjoyed a great day today. Michael and I had a fun bike ride with my parents this morning. Then we tried out a dog beach in Del Mar that we hadn't been to before, and we all had a ball. (No pun intended). :) Gotta love 84 degrees in February! I just love that happy, wind-blown, salty, worn out after-the-beach feeling.
Brax is at his happiest when playing fetch.
And Harley is happiest when chasing other dogs.
Harley doesn't fetch, but he will jump up in the air to catch a ball -- he can jump pretty high.
The 4 older boys built a cool sun dial with rocks on top and a circular tunnel full of water underneath the rocks.
Courtland almost always curls up on the sand and falls asleep whenever we go to the beach. He slept there for an hour or so with the towel covering his whole body and face.
Posted by Stephanie at 7:09 PM
10 February 2014
“. . . So we just arrived in our hotel in Litomerice because we have an appointment in the State Litomerice Archives tomorrow. Hopefully the census records are held there at that archive, and we will see what else we can find there too.
Today we packed up, had breakfast, and then walked over to the hot springs to get a Karlovy Vary cup for Jennifer because she asked Mom to get her one (that's what everyone does there, I guess, they get a special cup and sip the hot spring water - yes, I tried a tiny taste, and yes, it was hot and gross). But the cool thing is we have two photos of ancestors (their names are unknown to us so far) that were taken at a photo studio that used to be right there at those famous hot springs in Karlovy Vary.
Then we left the hotel and headed to the local archive in Karlovy Vary-Rybare, because before we left town Mom had emailed one of the State Archives asking them where to find census records for our ancestral towns around
and they wrote her back and told her to go there. We were excited to look at
the censuses to hopefully fill in some gaps and figure out who went with who.
But they don't have census records there. They told us the censuses for the
towns in the Karlovy Vary
region are in the State Archives in Pilsen, which was not close to where we
were so we couldn't go there. They did tell us that they had something for the
town of Imligau (Jimlikov) that was translated as Chronicles or Annuals for the
town (possibly including school or church information?) from 1924-1942. But
they showed us that that book was also online at www.portafontium.eu, and so we
decided to look at it later -- it's got much later dates, but we could at least
check it for our surnames to look for any descendants who stayed here, or see
if they have Annuals for any of the other towns online.
Oh, but we did find the old church in Fischern quite by accident -- when we parked to go into the archive, the church was right there. That would have been where our Strunz family went to church while they lived in Fischern.
|Catholic church in Fischern|
|I loved the decorative work over this arched doorway.|
Then we went to those other towns and photographed the remaining ancestral houses that I had found on Google Maps the other day. We went first to Putschirn and found houses 25, 17, & 7.
House No. 25 was my favorite of the day. Putschirn No. 25 is the house where my 3rd great grandparents, Maria Anna Strunz and Joseph Ott, were married. We never would have found it without Google Maps: Besides the fact that it didn't have a house number on it at all, it wasn't even on a road -- it was in the same yard as another newer house, and the old house No. 25 was back away from the road, beyond a little green house in the yard. There were red vines growing over it and the door was missing, with an open door frame. No one lived there, but the new house on the lot was inhabited. And there was a big Rottweiler in the yard that was only separated from us by a flimsy looking fence, so when it jumped at the fence and snarled at us that made us rather nervous. I told mom to just keep walking and not to look it in the eyes, and we got back to the car alright after taking our pictures.
|Putschirn No. 25|
|No. 25 beyond the little greenhouse in the yard.|
|No. 25 from the back.|
Then we found Putschirn No. 17, which had been rebuilt and was a light green house. No. 17 is where my 4th great grandparents, Anton Strunz & Katharina Möckl, lived at the time of the birth of their son, Joseph Strunz, who died as a baby.
|Putschirn No. 17|
Then No. 7, which was a tan house on the
Main Street with an original looking
roof. Putschirn No. 7 is the house that Anton
Strunz & Katharina Möckl had moved into by the time of the birth of their
youngest son, Joseph Strunz (who was given the same name as his older brother
who died as a baby). . . .”
Posted by Stephanie at 11:25 AM