14 July 2009, Tuesday Dearest Little Ladybug, So, how was your slumber party with Nana? Apparently you tried staying up really, really late. But, eventually you fell asleep, and enjoyed a great night in the bunk-bed bedroom you shared. Once awake, the six of us went downstairs and ate a nice breakfast outside on the patio. It was perfect outside for such a meal, with weather that continued to be just as nice on our journey to Luxembourg. We drove for about an hour, stopping for some groceries on the way, and eventually made it to a beautiful little town on a river in Luxembourg. In the town is a gorgeous castle, and we learned, the most visited attraction in country. The castle is called the Chateau de Vianden, and is the first castle you have ever visited in your life. We enjoyed a nice little lunch on the river before boarding a little train that would take us up toward the castle. After our ride through the town and the neighboring hills, we finally made our way to the castle. It was quite a vertical hike to get to the castle doors, but when we finally did, you said, “Oh no, I forgot my princess dress.” Quickly followed by, “So, where are all of the princesses?” You weren’t too happy to discover that there weren’t any princesses who actually lived in the castle, but you thought about it a little bit and said, “That’s not good.” Sorry little girl, just for you I wish that there was a princess you could have seen. The castle itself was gorgeous. You loved walking from room to room, learning about where the princesses lived, ate breakfast, slept, and danced at the ball. You even tried dancing yourself in the grand ballroom. You seemed so at home. Toward the end of our journey through the castle we realized that we somehow lost Marcel. As a result we spent the next half hour searching for him. Fortunately we finally found him near the exit. We stopped for a quick ice cream created by a very strange ice cream machine… weird or not, the ice cream was delicious. After the castle, we left the town and drove the countryside some more. We stopped at a little town a while later to walk around and enjoy a little drink (Sprite for you, and beer for the adults… we just cannot get enough of this great Belgian beer!). A funny thing happened toward the end of our drinks. I received a text message from a friend back home in Rapid City. She wanted to know what I was doing this afternoon. I replied that we were enjoying some beer in Belgium. Her reply, “Oh my, I guess that a beer at the Firehouse (our local brewery) is out of the question!” Yup! That will probably be the only time in my life that I will be able to say that to someone. After our fun little jaunt we came back to the cottage and enjoyed some of Melanie’s great soup and relaxed for the rest of the night. As I write this, I am out on the patio, listening to music, and you are dancing exhuberantly to the music. You make me so happy little girl. I love watching you learn, dance, and experience life. Keep being who you are!

Here are some more photos from our adventures today, A beautiful door in the town near the castle, You were a little naughty and would not hold nana’s hand while crossing the street. Here you are contemplating your “crime,” Playing with a water fountain, Patiently waiting for lunch, Sitting outside the castle, waiting to go in, Some weapons in the castle, You in the stockade, You performing in the castle, You, daddy, and mommy in the castle, Some very pretty castle windows, You skipping your way out of the castle, Telling your baby doll all about your day. ~~Mommy