A Visit

I am not one of those people that grew up in the same town and knew the same people all her life. I don’t have a best friend that I have known since I was very little. Neither does my husband. Both of our fathers were in the military. We grew up moving and traveling and meeting new people every two years or so. We grew up before emails and the internet made communication so instant and easy.

I spent the first few years of my life living with my Oma and Opa.  I would run to the door when my Opa would come home from work with his slippers in hand and then sit with him at the table while he ate his dinner.  I would stay the night in their little house in their kleine Garten. I remember digging and planting in their garden. I remember my Oma teaching me to knit. My Opa and I share a birthday. They were the center of my world and for a little while I was theirs. My mother tells me that I was the favorite grandchild.

Then as happens in military life, my father got stationed in the states and I didn’t go back to Germany for twenty-two years. During that time my parents as well as my Oma and Opa got divorced and I got married. For years one of my greatest wishes was that my children would somehow, someway get to meet my grandparents. It was a wish that diminished as time went on and our family grew and life got more complicated.

My children never got to meet my Oma. She passed four years ago. However, this weekend they got to meet my Opa. We spent 4 hours at his apartment on Sunday. My kids were so well behaved. We warned them that Opa is 84 years young and when you are 84 your body doesn’t work as well as it used too. They got it. Jo quickly found a kindred spirit in my Opa and curled up in his lap with a book (or kindle).

Ryan happened to be the last one out of the door. As he was leaving my Opa grabbed him and hug him and said (in German, of course), “Thank you so much for bringing them to me.”

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Weird Train Stories 


It’s EMI again!!!!


My name is Emi and Wednesdays are my days on my mom’s blog.

So today I’m going to talk about the top 3 weird train stories!

Ok soooo #1 

One day I was on the train and I saw a group of men that I had see several times before. Immediately I recognized them. The train comes and I sit and this one group of men sit right next to me…

And one sits next to me. The train starts moving and this one guys starts to FART on me. I look around and no one seems to notice. Also I was scared that they wouldn’t let me get up because I had seem them before. But I ended up being fine and getting off.

Now is #2 

So once my whole family was on the train after we went downtown. There was a man on the train that had some mental health issues and started singing to my dad. He also complemented his beard and petted his head. After speaking/yelling to my dad for a while he ended up moving down the train.

Finally #3

One day I was on my way home from school and was halfway home. There was an elderly woman that had been looking at me for most of the ride. I was almost at my stop when she yells at me, “WHERE IS YOUR MOTHER!!!!”.  I didn’t answer at first, but then she yelled it again. And again. 3 times. I was than at my stop and got off.

Anyways those are the 3 weirdest stories of me on the train


I’m so close to 30 subscribers!!!



Ittttts EMI

Did i scare you?? Anyways…


I’m sooooo exited!!!! I’ve been needing a best friend here especially since I can’t see my other best friend on a daily basis now. Here is a picture of us together with little J and his wife.

Plus even though i can’t introduce myself I’m pretty social.  And NEW PEOPLE!!!!!!!  What’s more exiting???????? And I can send people the unicorn emoji??????????

I’ve already gone upstairs to try and introduce myself but no one answered!!!!???

So it’s been 20 minutes so I think I’ll go try again.

Stand By……..

20 minutes later..

So they where home. They are from Brazil and speak mostly Spanish and a little English and Portuguese . They immediately invited us inside and were very friendly. I think we’ll be friends. ???

Botanical Gardens

Everyday, twice a day for about two months, Jude and I have been walking through the Leipzig Botanical Gardens. It closed November 1st for the season (although the gates were open today) and doesn’t reopen until the beginning of March. It really was a beautiful way to start the day. Jude and I walked along the different paths and explored a new section everyday. We always ended with his favorite part of the gardens, “up the hill and down the stairs and by the pond and then around”.

I have loved watching the various gardens transition into fall. These first three photos are of the Apothecary Gardens in full summer bloom. These were taking in August.

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The yellow brick wall surrounds the garden. I walk several times a day down this path.



Transitioning into fall. The tree in the photo has been around for a long time and for some reason it is dying. The cables are there to make sure that when it does fall it doesn’t crush the surrounding gardens.


The beginnings of Jude’s favorite path.


Yet another path and the season is changing.


Jude on his path.


We took a photo of our feet in the leaves. Cause leaves and fall and because we wanted too.


This is the other side of the Apothecary garden. It’s fall. Winter’s coming. I’m just thankfully we’ll be here in March to see it all come back to life.


Rome if You Want to … Day 5 & 6

I’ve been trying to write this blog post for a few days. It’s been a little tough. We’re two many days out from Rome now. I did seven peoples worth of eight days of laundry. That’s 48 shirts (not including undershirts or pjs), 48 pairs of socks, 48 pairs of underwear, etc. It’s a lot. Basically we’ve been a little swamped and I’ve finally caught the cold I thought I had missed, but it just turns out that I got it last.  Then we had guests. Then school started up again. Excuses. Excuses. Excuses.  Anyhow, here’s the photos from our last two days in Rome.

Day 5. We had no real purpose today. Just to explore a different part of Rome. It was Monday so almost all the Museums were closed, it limited what we could do. 

We stumbled upon the Cimitero Acattolico or the Non-Catholic Cemetery for Foreigners of Rome. It was quite beautiful and had a few interesting, well-known people buried there among them Keats and Shelley. There was also a pyramid on the grounds. It was built in 12 BCE.


We finished out the day by heading to Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli. This church was impressive. The church began not as a church, but as the Baths of Diocletian. Michelangelo was hired to adapt the ruins into a church. The church was very impressive and it offered a chance to see another one of Michelangelo’s creations.


That was about it for day 5.

Day 6. LAST DAY IN ROME! We saved the Vatican City for the last day. I wish we had had more time, but alas two 7 year old boys and one 4 year old boy had had enough. They were done, done, done. We managed to make it through the tour barely. The girls loved it and found every last bit of it interesting.



R’s favorite statue. He said, “That statue is unpolite!” Our guide pointed out to him the previous Popes’ had covered almost all the Roman statue ‘naughty’ bits with fig leaves.




This is our ‘illegal’ photo of the Sistine Chapel. It is considered a holy place and you aren’t suppose to speak or take photos in it. HOWEVER, every five minutes over an intercom, which was ridiculously loud, a person would scream, ‘SILENCO! SILENT! This is a holy place! Do not talk!’. It would get quiet for all of 15 seconds and then the murmurs would start again. I understand it’s a holy place, but good grief. It was jammed packed in there.

We headed over to St. Peter’s Basilica. The girls wanted to climb to the top of the dome, but as stated before the boys were done. It’s okay though it just gives us a reason to come back.

Final Thoughts on Rome

It was a crazy eight days. I wouldn’t change much of what we did although maybe the order. I hope we can visit Rome again when the boys are older. We wanted to go visit some of the crypts, but didn’t because we thought it would freak them out to much; especially Jude. We wanted to walk some of the Appian Way. We didn’t visit any of the museums. Both the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps were being renovated. Basically when we come back there will still be so much to see and do and eat and it’ll be easier cause the boys will be older.

The Emi show

ɬɧıʂ ıʂ ɛɱı ąɠąıŋ!!!! ı Ɩıƙɛ ʄąŋƈყ ῳཞıɬıŋɠ. 



If you don’t know what the Emi show is let me give you a quick idea. Every week I takeover my moms blog and talk about whatever I want. So LETSSSS GO. 

So first we do my favorites…

My favorite song of the week is  Hello by Adele

My favorite youtuber of the week is Rachel Ballinger  

And finally my fav food is Pretzels 

Todays subject is I dont like gym.

So at my school in Germany most girls aren’t very active. I’m the most active girl in my class and that’s hard to be. I am really sore and tired. So right now i dont like gym class. Thats about it. 

Thanks for reading!!!!!! Ok BYYYYYYYYYYYYYE

Byyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyye #emitakeover2015

Saying Goodbye

Goodbyes suck.  Just in general they suck and we’ve had to say a lot of them in the past few months. Of course, all with the knowledge that we will be seeing most of these fine folk again, but that doesn’t make it any easier.  However, along with goodbyes come hellos and meeting new people and having the chance to have our lives touch each others for however long. These hellos make the goodbyes all worth it.

Tonight we said goodbye to our first friends in Leipzig. Thank you R&B for helping us learn the lay of the land, telling us where the grocery stores are, how to operate various things, where the best spielplatzes are, and so many other things we would not have figured out as quickly if it weren’t for you two. Thank you for your little E being best friends with our little J. Thank you for finding our excessive cheering for the Packers amusing.  Thank you R for saying hello to me first, cause I’m kind of shy and awkward and don’t know what to say at first (after that I don’t really shut up). I didn’t know how desperately I needed a friend here until I meant you. Thank you for understanding how amazing and worth while this adventure is. Thank you for embracing us and our loud, messy household. I can confidently say you all will be missed very, very much. And hopefully with just a little luck I think our paths will cross again one day.

Much love and best wishes and Godspeed.


PS: Please go get a Chipotle burrito as soon as you get off the plane. 🙂

#emitakeover THIS IS EMIS POST

HIIIIIII this is Emi and i wanted to post something while my mom was at the store.IMG_1324

This is called #emitakeover

Im taking over yaaaaaas. ok what the heck is wrong with me im going to get in so much trouble. (insert shrug emoji here)

Im going to do a quick interview of all the other kids so LEEEETS GO!!!!!


First interview is with the little man the number one JUUUUUDE


ME: So Jude what was your favorite thing about Rome in all, and why?

Jude: The Coliseum because there was water fights and animal fights and it is SOOOO AWESOME.(do you have any hashtags to describe it?) #humanfighters #theguywithaswordandshield

ME: What was your favorite food you had and why?

Jude: Gelato, Chocolate. I like it because i really like it and its so cold and yummy (do you have a hashtag to describe it?) #sadfacebecauseicanthaveitanymore

Now onto Jonas and Rory 


Me: SO twins what was your favorite thing about Rome in all and why?

Rory: The giant circle castle with the big treasure chest that can fit our entire family in it.

Jonas: TO MANY AWESOME THINGS!!!!!!( Do you two have any hashtags to describe it?)  #treasurechest #tomanyawesomethings

Me: What was your Favorite food and why?

Rory and Jonas: GELATO, lemon and of course jo dosen’t really have one. (Do you have a hashtag?) #hashtagawesomenessitsmerorik #gelatoisawesome


Now onto the last person Cadence!!!!!


ME:What was your favorite place we went/saw and why?

Cadence: Thats really hard but if I had to pick one it would probubaly (i dont know how to spell that) be the Vatican City. It was really pretty and look really old and it was interesting learning about the pope and seeing al of the curches and the musuem although i wish we could seen more. And im not going to give you any hashtags so dont ask.


ME: What was your favorite food and why?

Cadence: Well one night we went out with mom and got mussels and those where really good. But I also liked the pasta a lot. ( Any hasht-) No


So thats all for this post if you liked #emitakeover message my mom to tell her to check her blog. THANK YOU FOR READING THIS ALL!!!!! #emitakeover leave a comment if you liked it. YAAAAAAAAAAY Ok  im done now



**YAWN** Rome if You Want To … Day 4

Today we visited Castel Sant’Angelo. The castle was built in the 100s as a tomb for Emperor Hadrian and his family. It served as such up until the 400s. After that it began it’s slow transformation into a military fortress. Pope Clement VII was held siege there by Charles V. It’s long, bloody, war-torn history made it a perfect trip for our children. They were thrilled by the rooms full of ancient armor and weaponry. They loved looking out through the arrow slits and cannon holes. It was a good choice for today.




After that we spent some time in the castle’s moat

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Then we had huge 5 euro plates of pasta and then gelato. Along the way we stumbled across a few Catholic churches. Every single one a work of art.

No seeing the pope today. We were able to see St Peter’s Square from the castle’s bridge and it was just a sea of people.  J think we should just send him an email letting him know to meet us for lunch. He doesn’t really get just who the Pope is. However, I tweeted the Pope just the same.

Rome if You Want to … Day 3

or day 3 million and five.

Today was a long day and nothing seemed to mesh. We had a few high points where we tried to pull it back together, but in all honesty today was steaming, sparkling, rainbow unicorn poop kind of day. It’s rainbow and sparkling and unicorn cause we’re on vacation in Rome and it is still kind of magical. It’s steaming and poop cause even vacation days, especially vacation days with littles things go wrong.

Today we had no real agenda … and maybe this was our first mistake. Our loosely based plan was to go up into the Trastevere section of Rome, head to the park above it, and then go to the Bocca Della Verita or Mouth of Truth.  We let the kids sleep in today because yesterday was such a full day. We headed out shortly after eleven and caught the bus.

Our first stop was the Santa Maria church in Trastevere. It was constructed in the 300s and finished in the 1100s. It is believed to be the first church dedicated to Mary. It was beautiful. It was very dark in the church so the photos are not even close to what they should be.


After this we found a delightful little sandwich shop and ate it on the steps to another church.

After this we hiked up to the top …


and took some goofy photos with a bunch of heads.

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then we went and got gelato and started the hunt for the bathroom.

I HAVE NO IDEA WHY ROME DOESN’T PUT BATHROOMS AT EVERY MAJOR ATTRACTION AND CHARGE FOR THEM. Cause they would make a KILLING! With all these old people and children. ARE YOU LISTENING ROME!!!???? We searched and searched for a bathroom. There were tears shed before we found one. It took 2 hours!

But before we found one, we visited the Mouth of Truth. The legend says that if you tell a lie when you put your hand in the mouth of the statue your hand will be bitten off. This terrified the youngest Cordells.

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They didn’t believe till we were actually there that it was a silly story.

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After this everyone was DONE so we found our bus and then found a bathroom (THANK THE PEE GODS).  I kept trying to amuse the kids by saying, “MY KINGDOM FOR A POTTY!” They were not amused.


We finally made it back to the hotel very tired and cranky.  We ended up heading back out a few hours later to the restaurant we found the other day by St Peter’s Square. I think the break and good food lifted everyone’s spirits a bit. We ended up walking over to St Peter’s Square so we could see it at night without the crowds. It was very peaceful and ended up being quite the thing we needed to end our not so great day.

Tomorrow is Sunday in Rome and I’m contemplating going to see if I can catch a glimpse of the Pope. Like most of Europe shops in general are closed. Here it would seem that the metro system is shut down as well so we’ll see what we actually get to do tomorrow.