12 July, 2013

Austria - Part Two (7 July-12 July)

We're slowly winding up our stay in Austria. On Sunday we head to Padua, Italy for a week - without Internet!

It's been full with mini-adventures and schooling: book reports and school, a barefoot hike, fairy tale castles, the Alpsee, München, ZugspitzeLand, and the Eibsee. Tomorrow we are going to round it off with a last trip to the AlpineTherme and packing all our stuff.

Books reports and school. The girls had to turn in another book report. This one had a written book report plus a project: Nazeriah had to create a newspaper page off of her book and Kaija had to create a book jacket to go with her book. It was also a lesson on time management. All Courtney and I gave them was the deadline and their instructions for the report and projects, but left it up to the girls to manage their time. I did schedule in "Book Report Time" during our schooling, but that was it. Of course it ended up in a stay up until midnight to complete it on time. I do have to say, they have already planned out the schedule for their next book report (due in August) and are kept to that schedule for two whole days!

The ride up the Reuttener Seilbahn (cable car) was enjoyed by everyone except Nazeriah. On certain days she doesn't like heights. Other days she is quite fine with them. Today was a day filled with anxiety about our safety. 

Once at the top all was good (okay, after we moved away from the cows ... She didn't like them either, but Chayton, Kaija and I ended up petting them). All the cows have these leather collars with bells on them. It's quite musical while you are up there as the bells ring with every chew and turn of the head that these cows do. And there are quite a few cows on the mountain.

After the cows it was time to take off our shoes and go on the Alpine Barefoot Trail!

After all that hard work it was time for fresh vanilla and strawberry milk from the cows. Plus this amazing dessert called Kaiserschmarren, a concoction that is like a cross between a shredded pancake and a funnel cake. 

Then thanks to our wonderful waitress we were able to race back up the mountain just in time to catch the last cable cars down. Whew. It would have been a looong walk if she hadn't come over and reminded us about the time!

Everyone was very excited to visit Cinderella's Castle: Schloss Neuschwanstein. We got lots of good exercise walking up to the castle, then to the Marienbrüke, next to the Alpsee, and then to our car. 

The view of the castle from Marienbrüke.

View from the castle balcony.

Playing in the Alpsee.

The Alpsee.

Then it was off to München for the day: Marienplatz, Viktualienmarkt, Hofbräuhaus, and The Hofgarten next to The Royal Residence.

Finishing book reports and reading Harry Potter on Kindle at the Höfgarten:

Next up, Garmisch-Partenkirchen and ZugspitzeLand. First up fun at the Michael-Ende-Kurpark (he's the creator of the "Never Ending Story") then a stop for ice cream and coffee.

After the ice cream we made our way over to the Eibsee for a little bit of swimming, paddleboating and a view of the Zugspitze.  

After all that fun we needed to fill up on food again - dinner at a pizzeria. We had a fun time along with a very nice and funny waiter. He not only took our order but taught us a few words in Italian. After filling our tummies, it was time to head home again.

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