{Janet’s Germany} Moritzburg

Schloss Moritzburg is a Baroque palace in Moritzburg which was built between 1542 and 1546. It was a hunting lodge for Moritz, Duke of Saxony. A Prince of the House of Wettin lived here until 1945 when the postwar Soviet administration evicted Prince Ernst Heinrich of Saxony. selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_1selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_2We only had an hour to walk around, so we didn’t take the tour, but there was plenty to see outside! Walking up to the castle is a treat and if you turn around, you will see a breathtaking view of the town. selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_3The bright yellow makes the castle look cheery and the front is decorated with wooden deer heads with antlers mounted to them. There are 71 throughout the castle, most ranging from 270 to 400 years old! Most of them were purchased as gifts, but there is a 66-point red deer antler from an animal killed by Elector Frederick III of Brandenburg in 1696…which we did not see. selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_4The statues are in the process of being cleaned, so some are dark and some look fresh and new. The grounds are kept immaculate and plenty of friendly Pomeranian geese waddled or swam over for a visit – and to see if we had food for them. We didn’t, and they soon went looking for the school children who were eating a snack on the lawn. selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_5In 1972 Moritzburg Castle was one of the locations in the filming of the Czechoslovak-German Cinderella movie, Drei Haselnüsse für Aschenbrödel (“Three Nuts for Cinderella”), which is quite a popular movie in central Europe. Cinderella’s shoe is on display. Yes, we tried to fit into it. No, it did not fit any of us. (Which was expected!) selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_6Cinderella is a fairy tale every little girl wishes would happen to her – a handsome prince will see past the rags, the less-than we’re told we are, and he’ll whisk her away out of the normal into the life of no need and love her forever. And the geese giggle. selah_candace_rose_Moritzburg_7As we left with ice cream cones in hand, the sun came out making the Schloss look even more striking!
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{N.E.C.} Oh, The End of School

This last winter I had the privilege of meeting and being a part of the Gustafson family and watch the three kiddos grow and learn new things: N (four), E (three), and C (9 months).

For our last ‘Kandi Day’ we had a day-long party. Lucky us that indoor activities had also been planned, because it was rainy and blowy and lunch and playing in the park was out of the question. N requested that we watch Court Jester and E wanted Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. We finished off the finger paints, made bath paint, had chocolate cake for snack and after lunch, watched some movies, played hide and seek, and pretended to be kitties.

1N is so…so…great! She tells great stories and sings the greatest songs. N is full of great art sense and it was fun seeing how her coloring changed in these past months. Playing Queen and tag were a blast with N and also curling up for Scary Zoo Stories which could last for hours on end. We may have had a bit of a rocky start (with new-adult-telling-me-what-to-do-when-I-just-want-my-mom, who wouldn’t?), but in the end, I will miss most this little girl who is a great helper. N works hard at keeping her siblings in line, because she wants them safe. She would often pick up toys ‘to make Mom happy when she gets home’. And MY mom loved getting the flowers N would pick for her ‘for another mother’s day’.

2E was two when I first met her. She immediately warmed up to me and we snuggled on a chair and read books all morning on the days N was at preschool. E still loves books, but she likes the park even more. She tells fantastic stories and likes to do whatever N does. Her good-bye ‘sloppy wet kisses’ were a highlight of my day (three year old’s are excellent at giving them!). E really knows how to encourage people in whatever they are doing. She is good at sharing and letting others have their way and making others happy.

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C is such an easy baby to take care of – even when he’s sick! I got to watch him grow 7 teeth, learn how to scoot, crawl, pull himself up to standing, and walk around a (short) table. He loved being able to climb the steps to the kitchen while the girls were eating lunch and play under the table! C’s favorite song to fall asleep to was Baby Mine by Alison Krauss. He would do a little dance when Lauren Mann and the Fairly Odd Folk were playing.

This was my prayer over the kids for the last month of watching them. It is Lullaby by Lauren Mann and the Fairly Odd Folk.

Picture 1PS – in all the jobs I’ve had, this is the only one I cried about ending.