Our closest temple is in Freiberg -- near Dresden not the Freiburg in the Black Forest. It's about a 2.5 hour drive. Which is a significant amount of time when you have to figure out what you're doing with the kids. So when our ward said we were having a ward temple day and that the Primary presidency would be providing childcare, well we cheered! And blessings shall be heaped upon their heads!!
The kids had a great time -- it wasn't just babysitting, they did a lot of fun activities including learning a hula that a Hawaiian sister created for the primary song that starts "whenever I hear the song of a bird". Now that's my favorite primary song EVER and so I kind've broke down in primary on Sunday when the kids performed it. It was beautiful!!
The last time we were in Freiberg was the temple open house and we went straight up and back. This time, we were there and done early enough that we had a good chunk of afternoon and we decided to explore. Freiberg turned out to be another beautiful city and it has a mineral museum!!! We decided to go in and had a great time!
This isn't really a Bavarian thing but Freiberg is in Saxony so maybe it's part of their architectural heritage/tradition? Anyway, I love windows that seem to peek out of the roof. It's especially awesome when they look like eyes!
Yes we're wearing coats. And eating gelato. I'm pretty sure that the kids won't remember a lot of the architecture, history, castles, museums, churches, etc. that they see in the next few years. But I can guarantee that when we move back to the states that we will hear the constant refrain of "where's the ice cream!!" You can guarantee in every German town, bread and ice cream. And it has become our normal!
Freiberg is part of a long line of towns that based their livelihood on mining. Perhaps that's why they have the mineral museum here although I think they were more known for their silver. But it is a hilly, lovely area.
The mineral museum is located in a palace (you know, because there was a palace lying around that needed to be used). Although they did put these weird windows on it but they left the roof windows in! Love it!
Megan was super smiley the whole time -- I love her smiley happy self.
The courtyard paving stones shaped like gems
Inside a fluorite atom
This is a mineral. Not a ball of lint with a mineral stuck in it. I'm not going to share all 150 pictures of minerals that we saw. I let the girls take my phone and they went crazy. But there were a lot of cool ones to see!
Have you noticed that Abby does this? She often takes pictures with things using her "Vanna White hand". Cracks me up. Totally natural. We do not watch Wheel of Fortune.
In the museum they had some kind of CIS interactive thing that the kids really liked even though we didn't really participate because it was all in German. But dressing up like bad guys is always fun. The kids thought that the tattoo sleeves were cool. But hopefully not too cool . . .
One room had photo-reactive rocks and changing UV lights to show them off. The kids loved that.
Pretty pieces of Freiberg
Ok so this plaque totally cracks me up. Goethe is a major writer of the late 1700s and while I've heard of him, I've never read any of his stuff. Needless to say, the Germans are very proud of him (as they should be). But this plaque says that he stayed in this building for 2 days in 1810 while visiting a friend. You need a plaque for that? Although I suppose that if I lived in a house where Jane Austen had slept, even for a nap, I would put up a plaque too!
Really cool sculpture map of the city -- and you can see how the houses are all in these square clusters with central courtyards. I'd love to know more about that.
At home it's continued to be cold (although today was amazing) and we've been slowly getting our yard under control. We have a colony of snails (sorry, snail forest) in our backyard by a small water feature and the kids love them. They carry them around, they poke their eyes in when they come out. Basically they've become pets. And since that's the only pet they're getting here, that's fine with me!
Abby's Vanna White hand!
This week we've had colds but today was too beautiful to sit inside. A friend mentioned an antique shop that was open so we decided to check it out. Yeah it wasn't a shop. It was a barn stuffed to the gills with furniture and clocks and knick-knacks. There were narrow little paths everywhere and every piece of furniture was filled. It was so awesome! What was supposed to be a quick stop on our way to other errands turned into 3 hours of treasure digging. And we didn't get much - Abby and I both got teacups, Megan got a glass cat, an old book of Shakespeare in German, a painted wardrobe (so pretty but I have NO IDEA where I'm going to put it!) and possibly some beautiful watercolor paintings. He wasn't sure on the price. Which means he's going to check and make sure they're not worth a lot of money. So we'll see. Anyway, afterwards we were in our favorite local city (Amberg) and couldn't go home just yet so we wandered, ate lunch, and ice cream (of course) and played at parks and had a glorious afternoon!
Discovered a church with a Rococo interior we hadn't seen before. It's so fun to get to know a place with all it's nooks and crannies and be more than a tourist. I absolutely LOVE living here and I still get a thrill from wandering and exploring, from sitting in a market square at a cafe and listening to church bells and people watching. I'm so glad we get to live it for a while!!
Random sculpture -- not a great picture. But so often in the niches on buildings there is a religious icon. I loved what the owners have done with this one with the boy and the birds!