Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Have you seen this man?

M I S S I N G



Have you seen this man?

HEIGHT: 6'3"
HAIR: Dirty Dishwater Blonde
EYES: Blue, both

Sometimes shaggy...



Sometimes sweaty...



He may be in disguise.



Last seen on November 5th in San Francisco, CA.



We have received tips that he has been abducted by a raven hair beauty known to chain her victims to a desk and force them to study for the GMAT.

We also have reason to believe that he may be suffering from amnesia, for he seems to have no recognition of the season or his family.

If presented with this individual, please call our missing persons hot-line immediately. Whatever you do, do not try to approach this individual alone. He is known to panic when under pressure.



Alert authorities. And please post sightings below. We just want him home for the holidays!!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Theodore Aiden Wiese



Thursday, November 16 @ 4:30 AM
19.5 inches long
7 pounds 9 ounces


Dear Aiden,

Welcome to the world. And welcome to the family. What a wonderful pre-Christmas gift you are to the Wiese Family Clan. I hope that you know the love that is waiting for you when you become old enough to embrace it. Your Aunties and Uncles have been waiting for you for a long time.

Grandpa hopes you are quiet, like him. Grandma hopes you like charades and learn to talk soon. Uncle Erik can't wait to talk politics. Aunt B is dying to take you shopping. Uncle George promises to teach you to fish. Aunt Katryn has already planned your first hike. Auntie Maiken is the only Wiese you will ever want to sing you a lullaby. Aunt Kirsten can make the plants come to life. And me, I can't wait to hold your tiny little fingers and kiss your tiny little toes, make funny faces and rock you back and forth until you fall asleep in the nook of my arm.

How blessed and grateful we are to have a new little Wiese among us.

My love-

Auntie Ing

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Prague and Beyond

I never told you about Prague. We arrived before the group meeting and explored the main square and Charles Bridge. The city is old, well preserved quite exquisite. Buildings from every era and untouched by WW11. Our group is older than the people on our Rick Steves tour last year. There are a lot of single women and couples. There is one single man and 8 married couples. After orientation, we were given a brief tour of the old town and then to dinner under the bridge.

The food is hearty and bountiful. The following day, we had a tour leader take us through the Jewish sector and on to the castle. Around 1939-40, the Nazis found out about the well preserved history and documents of the Jews. Hitler helped to finance some of the preservation because he felt this would be an account of an annihilated race. So this area remained untouched and there are historical records of the Polish Jews from centuries back. They remain there today. Before WW11,one third of Poland was Jewish . There now are only a few thousand left.

Some valiant woman, tried to work with the children in the concentration camps. Originally, early in the war, mass genocide wasn't practiced. They were put in these camps and died from diseases, starvation and shootings or cruelty, etc. There were drawings that the children made. I think that in spite of the horror of the camps and terrible atrocities, the thing that was most poignant to me was a picture of the Seder celebration that a child drew with 12 people at the table. The table was set with candles and tablecloths and bountiful food and 12 family and friends seated.. The 2nd picture done later by the same child showed the table bare and the 12 chairs empty. That one got to me.

That afternoon, we toured the castle. The grounds also house the offices of the Prime Minister. There was a lot of commotion and police vehicles arriving in front of the PM's office. It seems we were in time to watch the PM greet the King of Cambodia. Some of our group ran into the King again later that night. This was the night of the Thailand uprising.CNN was also reporting on riots in Budapest which we were to visit later in the week.

Mike and I also attended a black light theatre while we were in Prague. Using special effects and pantomime, the scenes were quite dramatic. My new medicine is causing me to have hot flashes...again! We had to leave when halfway through the show, I was perspiring profusely. It gets even better when we are dining and I take off my jacket, then my sweater and finally my top. I always have a tank top underneath but I am getting good at stripping...discretely?

We left Prague after 3 days and drove by bus to Pitlovice where we had dinner on the mountain. We had to hike to the gondola and ride to the top via Gondola. We were entertained by townspeople who danced and sang to us.

The next day, we drove to Krakow via Aushwitz, which I have already described.... in my last missive.

After 3 days in Krakow, we left for Eger. Eger is home to Hungary's most beloved castle and in in the country's wine growing region. Outside our hotel, was a minaret. It reminded me of where Rapunzel let down her golden hair. The minaret gets small as you climb it. No more than one person fits on a step. I decided to conquer my claustrophobia. With Mike's able help, we climbed to the top, got pictures and returned to earth. This was a big deal for me. The next 2 days my thigh muscles paid dearly for this.

We also visited a gulag, Communist era forced labor camp. This was where people, who were enemies of the Communist disappeared overnight and were never heard of again. They were in existence from 1949-1953, when Stalin died, After they were dismantled the surviving prisoners were let go but told that their families would be killed if they ever talked of their experiences. For years it was denied these camps ever existed.

Then we stopped at a elementary school, where we were treated to lunch, which started with a toast of schnapps.(not the children) The children were made up of village people. One third were gypsy. We were each introduced to the kids, conversed with them and given postcards so we would send them one from the US. After these experiences, we attended the wildest and most fun wine tasting party complete with Gypsy musician. Then we were off to Budapest. More later.

Love,
Susie

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Exit Ireland, Enter Poland

Some news from Mom and Dad's travels abroad:

We are still in Dingle and Mike is happy to report that there are 57 pubs in the town not 52. Today, we walked out to the lighthouse ad were rewarded with sights of Fungie, the dolphin who resides in the harbor. He was only about 10 meters from shore frolicking with some French girls swimming in the water. The walking is supurb. I love the long beaches with the packed sand, great on the feet.

Later that night we went to eat at a restaurant called "Out of the Blue" on the waterfront. It looked like a dive but was recommended by the locals. We had one of the best meals of our life. The seafood was fresh off the boats. The monkfish was accompanied by the flakiest puff pastry. Everything was divine. The restaurant only held 24 seating spaces. The couple behind us was from Bainbridge Island. The four on our left were from Gig Harbor. Two on the right were from Vashon Island. We started laughing from being in Ireland and everyone being from Washington state. We turned to the last table to ask where they were from...St Mary's County, Maryland where they not only knew and revered my Aunt Beth , the leading lady from St Mary's but worked with Muffin, My cousin. Ireland is a small town. Not only did we meet lots of locals but everyone recognized us where ever we went. My loving husband, Mike questioned this. "How do they remember me?" he asked. "Mike," I said, " Could it be that you are traveling through Europe with a woman sprouting the shortest hair do since Jane Pauley?" It's the "crucut syndrome."

We are now in Krakow, home to the late " John Paul the 2nd". Today we toured his digs and heard first hand how he helped to rid Poland of Communist Rule. He is a true saint to the Poles and Krakow is his beloved city where he trained and was bishop. 95% of this town is Catholic and because of their beloved Patron, 70% are practicing Catholics. They speak of him with awe. This city is quite lovely with a beautiful park replacing the walls once surrounding the city, beside athe Vistula River and with a square as large as St. Marco's in Venice.

Yesterday, we visited Aushwitz. I recommend this trip to everyone of age to remind them of the inhumanity that man is capable of. ...When I think of my health problems, I realize that I have always had hope and support. To think of those courageous Jewish mothers who knew what they were leading their children to ...is unthinkable. Those are the Saints of our century.

More later...especially Prague.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Sunday, Sunday

"The last few months have been pretty busy." That is what I tell most people when they ask me what is going on in the wonderful world of Jenn. What I should really say is that the last year has been crazy and the next 12 months are also going to be full of activity. It was only August of last year that I actually met Joe Wiese. Two months after meeting Joe this young Democrat was doing something that she never imagined: I took a day off of work to dress up like a Marine, to wear face paint, to shoot M-16's and grenade launchers, and to ride around in an amphibious assualt vehicle. The unfortunate evidence is below:




After dressing me up in his clothes and feeding me Meals Ready to Eat (MRE), Joe asked me to attend the Marine Corps Birthday Ball in Richmond, VA. We helped celebrate the Marine Corps 230th birthday in style and moved into the holiday season. Thanksgiving was spent with Joe's family in Manhatten. Christmas was celebrated by us numerous times. First, I took him to the company Christmas party:




We had an early Christmas celebration with my parents, Joe graduated from The Basic School (TBS) and we were headed out to Steilacoom, WA to spend time with Joe's family. Joe and I headed back to "normal life" once the holiday season was finito. I continued to work in Maryland and he worked on surviving the Infantry Officer Cou
rse (IOC). Just when life seemed to be slowing down we hit warp speed. Joe was stationed at Camp Pendleton in California and I was six weeks pregnant. Three months later I had quit my job, moved to southern California and was married. Here are some shots from our wedding day:







Joe and I continued to stay busy throughout the summer. He worked and I volunteered for the local Girl Scout Council. We found out that we were having a boy and played the name games. By the way . . . we finally settled on one but need to work on the creative spelling. Mike and Susie said that they would ask around at the pubs while they were in Ireland. It is a Gaelic name, so they should come up with great answers.

Our latest adventure was a trip up to Steilacoom to attend a brunch that Mike and Susie hosted in our honor. I wish that I had taken pictures of the house and at the actual event, but I suffer from pregnancy amnesia and I forgot to take them and I forgot to get a copy of the family shot taken after the event. I can still describe the beauty and the activities that took place on September 3rd.

The decor of the house was absolutely gorgeous. There were blue, purple, and white flowers in vases and baskets all over the first floor of the house. The garage had long tables for guests to sit and enjoy food and coffee. Music played for those who chose to eat and visit on the front porch (which overlooks the water). The food was catered by MiMi's and those gals had every surface in the kitchen covered with bountiful trays. The menu consisted of butter-nut squash ravioli, smoked salmon, fresh fruit, a spiral ham, spinach and raspberry salad, platters of cheese and crackers, a variety of quiche, banana bread, and an assortment of delicious tarts. The most sought after item was the crab salad that was made from crabs that Susie, Georg, Renee, and Father Dennis picked themselves! The food was delicious and the guests were all very kind and generous. Mike and Susie's house must have been the go to spot for the afternoon, because over 100 people stopped in to visit. The food, the decor, and the guests brought together a vibe or a spirit of communal friendship and it was such a warm and welcoming place to be. There is something to be said for good friends. And the Wiese family has an assortment of good friends. Many thanks to all who were able to make it to our brunch.

And a second thanks to all of those who have supported Susie throughout the course of her diagnosis and treatment.

Best wishes to all,

Jenn








Wednesday, September 13, 2006

IRELAND

We are on our own in IRELAND and enjoying the down time. Today we explored the Dingle Peninsula and tonight we are off to dinner and the pubs. They are filled with Irish music. The town is about 5' streets wide and 5' long. There are 52+ pubs. Last night we sang for 2 hours. Besides eating and drinking, we are getting in lots of walking. Getting over jet lag was the hardest part. We slept for 2 days but are now acclimated.
Ireland is beautiful with long sandy beaches, lovely vistas and every type of green. Today we are experiencing "Tacoma" weather but most days have been sunny. The breakfasts could go on forever. Homemade scones, eggs, bacon, sausage, sweet breads and muffins , huge varieties of fruit and juices, some awful things that you would never want to see on your plate and a variety of cheeses.
The movies "Ryan's Daughter and "Far and Away" were shot here and now we'll have to rent them to relive the experiencies. Rick Steve's and Aunt Barbara have been our tour guides as we circumnavigate this peninsula. They are doing an excellent job educating us.
Now we are off to dinner and the pubs.
MUCH LOVE,
Mom

(Image borrowed from http://www.in70mm.com/news/2006/ireland/images/DSCN3044.jpg -- Mary Houlihan)