• Army Wife Network Blog

    Ghost Stories for Dinner Parties

    In 2024, Vermont will recognize the 300th anniversary of the first continuous European settlement that was built in what would eventually become Vermont.* During those 300 intervening years, many houses have been built with generations living and dying— sometimes dying within those actual houses. It is quite uncommon in Vermont for your home to only have two digits in its age. Saying your home is 100 years old makes your home the youngster on the block. When my wife and I bought our first home, long before deciding on a military life, we chose a two-story 125-year-old duplex. It was located in a small village, and many years previously had…

  • Army Wife Network Blog

    Finding the American Pioneering Spirit

    If you are looking for the American pioneering spirit, you can find it all around you as a military spouse. During a recent luncheon with my community and spouses’ club, I had the pleasure of meeting two new Army spouses. These two ladies were a perfect blend of similar and differing Army experiences. Martha was at her second duty station, like myself, and Amanda had moved many times. All three of us have children, and the discussion turned to the unique experiences our children have while one or both of their parents serve in the Armed Forces. Amanda is currently homeschooling her children because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Recently, she…

  • Germany,  Hohenfels Day Trip

    Burgruine Kürnburg

    Prior to COVID-19, we traveled extensively across Europe year round.  So much so that my wife Jules often lamented how infrequently we enjoyed the confines of our own home.  With travel restrictions in place across Europe that is no longer a problem.  In some ways we are now under house arrest. Unfortunately, this time of year is not ideal for being under house arrest. When the last rays of summer warmth dissipate into the brown and crumbling leaves of Autumn in November, the fog descends on Bayern like a cheesy 1980s horror movie set.  Our little river valley in Deutschland can be a very foggy place.  For days on end. …

  • Army Wife Network Blog

    But Do They Appreciate All They Have?

    If the title of this piece caught your eye, a number of things could have crossed your mind. Because you are most likely part of the military family, you may have thought it referred to civilians whose spouses are not at risk of dismemberment and death on their “work trips.” Or perhaps you thought it referred to other military spouses whose active duty member hasn’t deployed seven times in the last ten years. No, I’m referring to the children many of us are raising today. Like many Americans I cannot get enough of Stephen E. Ambrose’s Band of Brothers. He perfectly captures what Tom Brokaw coined “The Greatest Generation.” Following World…

  • Army Wife Network Blog

    The Never-ending War

    Every two or three years a battle happens for military families who are PCSing. That battlefield is your home, and the casualties are not only your possessions, but your sense of calm, serenity, and sense of right and wrong. I’m talking about moving. Some battles are so epic, it spawns a Facebook group with thousands of members consisting of military families that have faced moving horror stories. They turn to this group not only for retribution solutions, but also to simply share their grief, anger, and bewilderment. In my short military life, we have only “suffered” two moves; however, if there is one common discussion you will have with friends…

  • Germany,  Hohenfels Swimming

    Naab River Rope Swing

    If you’re old enough you remember those Mountain Dew commercials where the 20 somethings swig their Mountain Dew while swinging into a body of water on a hot summer day, you’ll appreciate this swimming spot on the Naab River. For those not familiar with the Naab, some days it’s warm, some days it’s chilly, and some days its off the coast of Maine chilly.  Your best bet is to make sure it’s sunny and hot and if it’s one of those days where the water is Maine cold, well at least it will be refresing. The drive from Hohenfels to Duggendorf is approximately 25 minutes and the town is just…

  • Germany,  Hohenfels Day Trip

    Etterzhausen On The Naab

    Just down the road from Kallmunz and before you get to Nittendorf is a swimming spot located in Etterzhausen on the Naab River. For those not familiar with the Naab, some days it’s warm, some days it’s chilly, and some days its off the coast of Maine chilly. I still haven’t figured out the cause for this variance. Back in New England you may find the swimming waters slightly cooler following a rainstorm. The rain would elevate the water levels and cause more movement (think rushing brooks) which would allow less time for the water to pool and heat on sun drenched afternoons. We had passed this swimming spot numerous…

  • Germany,  Hohenfels Swimming

    Rothsee

    Being a kid from Vermont I seek the water.  I grew up swimming in lakes, ponds, swimming holes, brooks, rivers, streams, gorges, and quarries. Here in Hohenfels I’m looking for those same water opportunities for my children. That’s why on a sunny day with temperatures in the 80s, Hunter (11), Eva (9), and Acadia (7) and I jumped in the car for the 80 minute drive to Rothsee.  Had we taken the Autobahn the drive would have been 60 minutes but what’s the point of racing to a place where you are trying to relax?  Why not take the backroads?  Indeed.  And the drive was beautiful. Just before arriving at…

  • Army Wife Network Blog

    Thinking About Living Overseas?

    Maybe you thought about living overseas before you had kids. Maybe you thought about living overseas before you were married. Maybe you thought about living overseas before you stopped dreaming. What this piece is not about are those Facebook and Instagram posts you’ve seen from your friends stationed or living overseas where the entire family is standing in front of the Eiffel Tower or in the Neuschwanstein Castle upon which the Disney castle is modeled (see featured image). If living overseas was filled with those type of moments every second of every day, then who wouldn’t want to live overseas? No, this piece is about the little adjustments we as Americans must make every…

  • Germany,  Hohenfels Day Trip

    Kallmunz Castle Ruins

    In anticipation of moving to Germany I scoured the internet for tips on how best to prepare for the move from one culture to another.  Among the internet resources I found was a military spouse blog that used a featured image that became lodged in my head.  Living in America at the time, it looked like a German fairytale.  There was a seemingly medieval bridge in the center of town, castle ruins high above the town, and charming structures dotted throughout the town.  I would revisit that blog after living in Germany in a hotel 25 minutes away only to realize that village was Kallmunz.  I have hiked the Kallmunz…