Wilkommen! Welcome to Dresden.

I was fortunate enough to travel to Dresden, Germany a couple of years ago and stay with a good friend at her home there.  She lives stateside, but grew up in Dresden during the cold war era.  Dresden was decimated in World War II.  It was only occupied by residents and was considered one the most beautiful cities in all of Europe at the time.  The war in Europe had all been won, Hitler was gone, yet the British decided to make one final stamp on their victory and destroy the city.  Thankfully, my friends parents, who were  teenagers at the time, survived.  After the war, most the ruins were just built on top of by the communist.  What once was a beautiful city was covered in post war, benign, ugly architecture.  Now, there are excavation sites everywhere.  Most post war buildings are being torn down, but what is revealed are basements, many with the stairs and doors still intact.  Like a stairway to nowhere.  Its hard to get good photos of them, as the fencing impedes this.  I’ve included one, though, its not great.  In the rest you will see the rebuilding and work and effort and pride they take in restoring this beautiful city!

This church is an amazing testament to German engineering-not because it has some tricky butressing thing or anything, but the blackened bricks are original to the church.  All the bricks in the original building were numbered, and since the plans had survived, the usuable bricks which survived were placed in their original spots.  One of the things I love about Europe is their dedication to preserving their history.

Auf wiedersehen!



The Crusade for the Perfect Toiletries Bag and other Ramblings….

So I have a problem, on top of my shoe problem.  I cannot find the “perfect” toiletries bag.  Nor can I find the “perfect” weekend bag.  I have a couple of totes that are suppose to be weekend bags, but they are really “overnight-no make-up-one pair of underwear and one shoe bags”.  I am unable to go on long fantastic trips right now, but the weekends are becoming relatively regular.   With each trip I end up taking both of my weekend bags.  One is strictly for toiletries and shoes and a book, the other for clothes.   In all honesty, I only slightly over pack.  Let’s just say I hate being unprepared for the possible elements at any given location. This usually means a swim suit and winter boots.  With that said, I am convinced that a weekend bag should not adhere to carry-on sizes.  A typical weekend is within driving distance, or the train.  And even if you fly, claim its carry-on size and if they say no at the gate, your bag is first off and you don’t have to go to baggage claim to get your bag.  Just working the system here folks!


So I am not just on a quest for the perfect weekend bag, but for the perfect toiletries bag.  One that holds all the essentials for a woman, plus makeup.  I end up carrying my current toiletries bag, plus my make-up bag and sometimes a hairdryer and/or curling iron.  And don’t forget the multitude of brushes…  Perhaps I should condense?  You think?  I can work with one pair of jeans and two t-shirts, but they will be completely unworthy if I can’t change my hair and makeup!  DUH!  I know I have some creative traveler friends out there, what do you do?  And if you are a guy, please recognize this is a serious problem!


On a completely side note, since this is Thursday Reveal day, I have to add another no eat thing to my list.  Alongside pancakes and donuts I have to add regular pizza.  It does not hold the same carbohydrate- sugar- make me sick to my stomach- in need of a nap- crash, however, it instantly bloats me and adds weight in the morning.  I have been doing significant research into my dinner/evening eating habits in an effort to discover the best nighttime snacks or late night dinners.  Ones that do not adversely effect my weight loss goals.  Sadly regular old pepperoni pizza lost.  Big surprise, I know, right?  I still have not ruled our thin crust with red onions, green peppers, pepperoni and pineapple…yum!


Our sunrise the other morning.  Have a great Thursday!

Tuesday Art Fair!

Happy Tuesday!   I really started the Tuesday art posts for two reasons.  One, I wanted to start inventorying my art work, but two, I wanted to encourage myself to keep going.  I mean what happens if all of a sudden its art Tuesday and I don’t have any art to show?  But no worries.  I have a few left to show.  I do need to figure out how to get the best images of them.  So, please be patient with me!

Today I have two more 10 x 3 oil pastels.  This one is Morning, Landscape.

And this one I just did the other day.  Its currently untitled, a 10 x 3 oil pastel as well.  Any suggestions?

Happy Tuesday!

Halloween Spirits……

Its taken at least 20 years, but its starting to happen.  You see, something happened to me after high school.  I seemed to have lost the Halloween spirit.  Dressing up just wasn’t any fun.  It all seemed too trite and tarty.  Then it just became an internal competition.  I have a deep seeded desire to have the most original costume.  It was all too much pressure and honestly, just taking the kids trick or treating was enough.  Halloween was just not my thing.  Well, it still isn’t my thing, however, the spirit is moving, slowly, but moving.  This weekend we had a Halloween party to attend.  The idea was Skipper and Mary Ann.  Eric had to put his own spin on it and become a Jamaican Rastafarian skipper, so I guess that made me South Central Island Mary Ann.  I have no pictures, yet.  I’ll offer them up if they ever surface!


Regardless, the spirit got its groove on at Chez Pinkel!

With Phase I of our carving complete, we move on to decorating the yard, just a little……With some of our homemade art projects! (see homeschooling….)


Rowen and LuLu’s masterpieces.  Rowen is the one with the mustache.  He also got over zealous with his carving and basically carved the whole eye out.  Looks kinda like a pirate, no?

Phase II of carving:  India-well, practice, practice, practice.  This is a howling wolf.

Eric’s has a giant forehead, or really a five or six head.  When its lit up its translucent and he’s going to add brains to it.  He is our special effects guru, mon!

Oh yes, I believe the Halloween spirit is brewing for Kimberly!  Where is Tristan’s?  Oh he is 15.  The spirit is getting ready to depart from that train.


One more Halloween party yet to come and new costumes too!  What, you thought we would repeat our others?  No way!  The spirit’s moving and these ones are going to be even better!  I’ve got my Halloween MoJo back!

Back from Paris!

Bonjour!  Je suis arrive!  Ok, I did not just return from Paris, but metaphorically speaking I did.  You see, dear sweet LuLu acquired my phone and promptly placed somewhere unknowns to me.  When asking her about it she said it was in her butterfly purse, which Barbie had and of course, that Barbie was in Paris.  So with that in mind I finally found my phone.




Have a great weekend!  Aurevoir!

Thursday Reveal

Throughout the week little things pop into my mind that I can post on my ” Thursday Reveal”.  Of course, now its Thursday and I have forgotten them all!!!  So, first of all, I will reveal that my memory is slipping.  BIG TIME!!!  I seriously walk from one room to the next and can’t remember why I am there.  Maybe we are being fed too much information and my mind is having a hard time sifting through the crap to decide what is good to keep and what is junk mail.  But one thing that my memory has not seemed to diminish is my ability to remember people’s names.  It is actually embarrassing.  When you have only met someone once and remember their name, but they don’t remember yours?  Not cool.  Either way you look at it.  They are embarrassed for not remembering yours because they must feel awkward because they have made you feel un-memorable on the other hand, you feel awkward because you have made them feel awkward because you really were not that memorable.  And in all fairness-I really just remember names and faces pretty darn well.  None of you are really all that memorable.  It’s just a quirk in my machinery.  MAYBE I have too many people’s names in my head and that’s why I can’t remember anything else!  Guess I will just crawl under my cozy rock and not meet anyone else!


On the note of age, my first-born turned 15 this past weekend.  I was hoping to do some fun things and have some mom/son bonding time.  Apparently I forgot that at the age of 15 you are really only good for a ride and some cash.  Hmph.  Somethings I can remember though.  Helping him catch his first fish, his love of the triceratops, the red Power Ranger, the Crocodile Hunter and the hours of watching the Jungle Book and Tarzan.  Now he texts me from the next room while we watch the same sports event in different rooms, because he is just too independent and too cool to be around his mom.  Except when he wants a sandwich.



For his birthday he custom designed his own pair of Nikes.  I’ll post a pic as soon as they get here!

(If I remember!)


Happy Thursday!