New Release, Snowstorm!


Christmas inspirational romance

I’m excited to share that Snowstorm has just released at Amazon! Here is a little about it:
She’s traded everything for her job. He’s turned his back on the world. Can two stranded souls open themselves up to love?

Tabitha has her sights set on the top of the corporate ladder. She has all the plans in the world to make more time for her family after locking down her Wall Street promotion. But when her stubborn father needs convincing about heart surgery, she jumps in her car and speeds toward home… straight into a snowbank…

Arnie doesn’t ask for much. All the widower war vet wants is his farmland and his privacy. But when a fast-talking city slicker crashes her car near his house during a blizzard, he’s forced to take her in. After Tabitha pries into a past he’d rather forget, he wonders if he’d be better off in the storm…

As the snow piles higher and Christmas approaches, Tabitha and Arnie begin to warm up to each other. Is Arnie willing to open himself up to a better future? When the snow melts, will Tabitha make a sacrifice for what her heart truly desires?

“Snowstorm is a contemporary Christian romance for the career-driven age. If you like heartwarming stories, resilient characters, and a deeper look at what really matters, then you’ll love this Christmas inspirational romance.”

Buy Snowstorm to cozy up with a wintry romance today!

Available at Amazon!

Old Fashioned Apple Pie Recipe

Christmas romance!

Snowstorm, Christmas romance 2017, Christian, inspirational romance novel, Christmas inspirational romance novel

Now available for pre-order!


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Snowstorm by Jennette Green


by Jennette Green

Giveaway ends December 05, 2017.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

photo by Larry D. Moore CC BY-SA 3.0


Snowstorm is now available for pre-order at Amazon! 🙂

Although Tabitha loves Wall Street, she also loves to bake. Here is the family favorite, old-fashioned apple pie recipe she bakes for Arnie. It’s the same recipe I used to bake for my grandfather every year, because he loved it so much. Even better, the homemade crust never fails to turn out perfectly! Here’s the recipe (you can also download a pdf version here):

Old Fashioned Apple Pie


Bake 425° 40 – 45 minutes

*Pastry for two crust 8” pie
5 – 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced thin
¼ c brown sugar (packed)
½ c granulated sugar
2 TBSP flour
½ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp allspice
2 tsp lemon juice
2 TBSP butter

Combine all ingredients except for butter (and pastry). Turn into a pastry lined pie pan. Dot the top with butter and cover with the top pastry crust. Make slits in the top for steam to escape (you can create designs to make it look decorative, too). Seal and flute the edges together. Place a two inch wide strip of tinfoil around the fluted edges of the pie crust. (Fold the foil in half lengthwise and gently place it over the fluted edges.) It will keep the edges from burning while baking.

Never Fail Pie Crust Recipe

(Double this recipe to make *Pastry for two crust 8” pie)

1 c flour
¼ tsp salt
1/3 c plus 1 TBSP butter flavored Crisco shortening
2 TBSP ice water

Mix flour and salt in narrow bowl. Use fork back to cut in shortening until it is the size of peas (approximately).

Dribble in water and mix gently to moisten. May need more water, but use the minimum amount you can, or else the curst will be rubbery/leathery and tough.

Roll out the dough on a flat surface until it is the size you’d like it to be. Gently fold it in half and place it in the pie pan, being careful not to stretch it. Patch it if necessary to fit the pan, and so that you have enough to flute the edges. DO NOT RE-ROLL! (It will make it tough.)

Double the recipe for a two crust pie, and use the larger half for the bottom crust.

To make a pie crust for a 9” or 10” pie pan, 1½ the recipe.

“Snowstorm is a contemporary Christian romance for the career-driven age. If you like heartwarming stories, resilient characters, and a deeper look at what really matters, then you’ll love this Christmas inspirational romance.”

Pre-order Snowstorm here!

Snowstorm, coming Dec. 5th!

Snowstorm, Christmas romance 2017, Christian, inspirational romance novel, Christmas inspirational romance novel


Christmas inspirational romance

I’m excited to share that Snowstorm will be released very soon! Here is a little about it:
She’s traded everything for her job. He’s turned his back on the world. Can two stranded souls open themselves up to love?

Tabitha has her sights set on the top of the corporate ladder. She has all the plans in the world to make more time for her family after locking down her Wall Street promotion. But when her stubborn father needs convincing about heart surgery, she jumps in her car and speeds toward home… straight into a snowbank…

Arnie doesn’t ask for much. All the widower war vet wants is his farmland and his privacy. But when a fast-talking city slicker crashes her car near his house during a blizzard, he’s forced to take her in. After Tabitha pries into a past he’d rather forget, he wonders if he’d be better off in the storm…

As the snow piles higher and Christmas approaches, Tabitha and Arnie begin to warm up to each other. Is Arnie willing to open himself up to a better future? When the snow melts, will Tabitha make a sacrifice for what her heart truly desires?

Snowstorm will be released on December 5th, 2017!

Kaavl Calamity — New Release!

Kaavl Calamity, paranormal romance book

Kaavl Chronicles Book 3 of Paranormal Romance Series

Methusal and Mentàll’s story continues with more sparks flying (literally and figuratively) than ever before.

He’ll stop at nothing to get what he wants…

With war looming on the horizon, Methusal and her kaavl teammates risk everything to infiltrate the enemy, undermine the insane Zindedi Presidente, and bring peace to their continent. But the challenge she faces from the enemy may pale in comparison to the challenge she faces from her own team.

Fireworks erupt when Methusal and Mentàll Solboshn must pose as newlyweds in Zindedi. Torn between her distrust and growing attraction for him, Methusal must set aside their differences to win the battle against the enemy. Even as she struggles to trust her kaavl leader, signs point to a spy within their midst.

In the end, her determination and creativity must win out, or their homeland will face an army far more imposing than any that have come before.

Read an excerpt:
Kaavl Calamity

Get your copy here:
Amazon Kindle
Barnes & Noble

Kaavl Conspiracy has been Nominated for Global Ebook Award

Kaavl Conspiracy, a young adult paranormal adventure novel by Jennette Green

From the Press Release:

Multi-published author, Jennette Green, kicks off an exciting new young adult fantasy series with Kaavl Conspiracy, which has just received a nomination for a Global Ebook Award. Readers’ reviews accolade the book for deft world building and a fast paced plot, as well as a fresh, creative new concept in the paranormal realm. Four books will be published in the coming months in the Kaavl Chronicles Quadrilogy. Kaavl Conspiracy is now available in print and ebook formats.

Read the summary and an excerpt:
Kaavl Conspiracy

Kaavl Conspiracy, a young adult paranormal adventure novel by Jennette Green

Ordering information
$15.97 print, $ 2.99 ebook
Amazon Kindle
Barnes & Noble

Sudden Hearing Loss Should be Considered a Medical Emergency

Two years ago, in February 2014, I lost over 90% of the hearing in my left ear. The good news is that by taking immediate action, my hearing thankfully recovered. I am writing this post in the hope that my story might help you, or someone you love.

In February 2014 I was diagnosed with sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHS). This is different than conductive hearing loss, which typically results as a result of a cold or allergies (and is when the ear feels “plugged up”). While the “full” sensation in the ear and difficulty hearing are also symptoms of SSHS, there the similarity ends. SSHS can result in permanent hearing loss, and according to the National Institute on Deafness and other Communicative Disorders (NIDCD), should be considered a medical emergency.

My Story

My sudden hearing loss started in the early morning on a Tuesday. It alarmed me. My ears felt plugged up and I could not hear well, but I did not know why. I was not sick, and had not been sick for quite some time, although I had been unusually tired for a few days prior to the hearing loss. I also had no allergies. The hearing loss made no sense to me, and it also scared me because my grandmother (now 98) suddenly lost all of the hearing in her right ear when she was in her early 30s. That ear became permanently deaf. I did not want that to happen to me, so I went to an urgent care clinic that morning. They could find nothing wrong with my ears, except perhaps a bit of swelling in the ear drum (both ear drums). I could hear out of my right ear, but it felt plugged, as well. The left one was the one that became the problem.

I did research online that day, and one website said that treatment within three days is critical for sudden hearing loss. So I immediately started calling Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) specialist doctors. None could get me in right away. The nearest appointment was three weeks out. I didn’t want to wait that long! I finally found a doctor that would see me on Thursday (two days after the hearing loss occurred). The hearing loss worsened over those two days, until on the day of the appointment I could only hear 5-10% of normal in my left ear. He did several tests. One test was to ring a tuning fork and place it on the jawbone behind my left ear. I didn’t know what he was doing. I didn’t hear anything when he did that. Then he rang the fork and placed it directly outside of my ear. I was surprised I could hear it, but I could hear high noises and other odd frequencies with that ear. I told him I heard it. Then he did the same with the other ear, and I could hear the tuning fork vibrating on my jawbone behind my right ear. I also heard it when he held it directly outside of my right ear. I said so. Then I remarked that I didn’t hear anything at all when he placed it on the bone behind my left ear. That is when he became very serious. He finished examining both ears, and prescribed prednisone for a 6 day period, and nasal steroids.

I later discovered he performed the Rinne test with the tuning fork. It compares the air conduction of sound vs. bone conduction of sound. In SSHS and normal hearing, air conduction is better. In conductive hearing loss (plugged ears due to a cold or allergies), people can hear better through bone conduction. For example, when you chew food when your ears are plugged due to a cold or allergies, it sounds really loud on the side of your head where your plugged ear is located. In SSHS–at least in my case–I could not hear through bone conduction at all. When I chewed or talked, I heard absolutely nothing in my left ear.

On Saturday, I felt some minor side effects of the prednisone, and knew it was beginning to work. That was also the first day my hearing improved. By the next day it was about 15% of normal. It slowly improved over the following days, until it was near 100% of normal within two weeks, but with residual tinnitus. One final note: Over the following months I occasionally experienced a feeling of “flatness” (or something falling flat in my ear) that dulled the hearing in that ear. At that time I resumed treatment with the nasal steroid (which I had discontinued after my hearing was 100% restored). A week of the spray treatment always solved the problem.

I will be forever grateful to my ENT doctor and his clinic–that I was able to get in and see him right away. I know the immediate treatment saved my hearing.

If you, or someone you love, or someone you know experiences sudden hearing loss, please encourage them to get medical help right away. According to the NIDCD, treatment should begin immediately; the sooner treatment begins, the greater the chance of full hearing recovery. There is a maximum window of 2 to 4 weeks when treatment can still be effective. After four weeks, a patient who is given oral steroid treatment has virtually no chance of benefit (see the “More about SSHS” link below).

During the course of my hearing loss, I came to greatly appreciate the ability to hear–to hear my children’s voices, and music, and just to be able to converse with people. I also have a great empathy now for people who wear hearing aids. It is difficult to distinguish sounds when there are multiple sources of input, and when each ear hears things differently. Just as one example, it was so frustrating for me to be a crowd and to try to follow a conversation near me. It was incredibly difficult. My brain had an extremely hard time filtering and prioritizing and making sense of all of the sounds. It was also extremely hard to explain why this was the case to other people.

I am so thankful to my ENT doctor and to God that my hearing was 100% restored. If you know of someone who is suffering from sudden hearing loss, please encourage them to see an ENT doctor immediately. They will thank you for it!

Additional sources:

More about the Rinne test:

More about SSHS:


Endure 4 Kindness 2014 Participant

Endure 4 Kindness

I’ll be participating in Random Act’s “Endure 4 Kindness” (E4K) event on October 18, 2014!

This is a global endurance event. Each participant chooses an activity they would like to perform, and then they do it, for as long as they can. The goal? To raise money for Random Acts ( This nonprofit organization supports and funds random acts of kindness at home, and around the world.

My Challenge: Run 100 Flights of Stairs

Do you think I can run 100 flights of stairs? Watch this silly video and see what you think…

Random Acts is an organization close to my heart. It not only funds and supports random acts of kindness, such as building the The Jacmel Children’s Center (an orphanage and school) in Haiti, but it also encourages every day people like me to #GetKind each day, to the people in our own lives. In addition, it funds grassroots acts of kindness at home, and around the world. See their Kindness Files page for more information.

Please help me raise donations for the Endure 4 Kindness project at Crowdrise. Donations of $5 or $10 are very much appreciated! It will add up quickly, as my publisher, Diamond Press, will match each dollar (up to $250) donated to my fundraiser for Endure 4 Kindness at Crowdrise. Please contribute today. Let’s conquer the world, one random act of kindness at a time.

Streaming Video

On October 18, 2014 at 9:00 a.m., Pacific time, my attempt to run 100 flights of stairs will be streamed here. And if I can run More than 100 flights, well, that might be a miracle. Stay tuned for some exciting viewing. 🙂

UPDATE: My goal was 100 flights of stairs, but I ended up running 201 flights (in a little under 1 hour)! Honestly, this was a miracle to me, as the most I’d ever run at one time before was 75, and one month ago I was only running 40. This challenge was a ton of fun, and I enjoyed every single minute of it!

Thank you for supporting Random Acts, and the Endure 4 Kindness fundraiser!

GISHWHES 2014 Flash Fic Challenge


I’ve joined up to help a few teams for GISHWHES 2014 flash fic challenge #78. (Get a previously published Sci-Fi author to write an original story (140 words max) about Misha, the Queen of England and an Elopus.)

I’ll post my fics on this page.

First off, for team knights of TARDISia:

The Eyes Get It

“Help us, Doctor!” The Queen of England looked terrified in Misha’s Skype app.

Misha lay sprawled in a warehouse near Elvin the Elopus. Both were paralyzed, thanks to the mother alien’s nerve numbing impulses. She drifted toward the warehouse, her gigantic eyes pinpointed upon her prey. If they killed her, her babies attacking the Palace would die, too.

“I thought you were an angel,” Elvin told Misha. “We could use some angel mojo.”

“I’m no angel,” Misha directed a wolfish smile at his phone. The queen rolled her eyes, but winked.

Elvin snorted through his trunk. Black ink landed on Misha’s neck.


“Sorry.” The alien drifted inside the warehouse. Soon, they’d be sucked into its stomach and digested for Sunday brunch.

Unless… Elvin shot acidic ink into the alien’s eyes. A primal scream rent the air and it imploded.

This second one is for team loose_ends:

A Little Help for My Friends

“Misha, I need your help.” The Queen of England frowned at the three gigantic aquariums. In the center, an elopus stared back, draped over an artfully positioned fallen branch. His octopus legs dangled in the clear sea water. Parrots chattered in the trees behind him, and a gigantic turtle swam in the tank.

The tanks on either side of the elopus were empty.

“The parrots’ wings are clipped. And the turtle. How…?”

“I’ll find out,” Misha promised, a twinkle in his eye.

Zookeepers moved the creatures back into their own tanks. Misha thought the elopus looked unhappy.

Misha returned that night, and chuckled when he spotted the elopus climbing his aquarium’s slippery glass walls. After slithering into the turtle’s world, he curled tentacles around his friend and climbed home.

If an elopus could smile, Misha thought this one might smirk.

And the third fic is for team GayAngelsInitiative:

No Jewel in the World

“I simply must have one, Misha. An elopus is rare and precious. No jewel could compare.”

“Nothing could compare to your beauty.” The Queen of England’s eye roll indicated Misha’s compliment hadn’t served its desired purpose.

He tried again. “An elopus is fragile. It can only live in one delicate ecosystem.”

“Take me there, Misha.”

With a sigh, Misha made the arrangements. When they arrived at Elopus Island, a park ranger frowned as they offloaded a cage into their jeep. They drove to Elopus Point.

Elopuses sunned themselves on the black volcanic rock. Most were white, the color of angel wings. They looked blissful.

“Which one, madame?”

“They look so happy.” The Queen bit her lip. “Jewels can’t buy joy or peace. How can I take away what they have, to obtain what I cannot buy? You win, Misha.”

The Pirate’s Desire

The Pirate's Desire, a regency historical romance novel by Jennette Green

My new regency historical romance novel, The Pirate’s Desire, has just been released through Amazon Kindle! The paperback version should be available within a few days.

I’m so excited this book has finally released! It’s been a long time in the making. I wrote it just after I wrote The Commander’s Desire seven years ago, but it required quite a bit of editing and polishing to make it into the book it is today. The book takes place in 1812, regency England (so no, it is not a sequel to The Commander’s Desire, although the hero suffers from demons from his past, much like the Commander does).

I deeply appreciate the many people who have helped make this book possible. First, I’d like to thank my editor, Lori, for catching a number of typos, and for her brilliant idea to fix one plot point, when I was absolutely stuck. Also, I am so grateful to my beta readers for taking the time (and on a time crunch this time around) to read and provide valuable feedback on this book. Suzy, McKenna, Betty, Briana, Kristy, and Jen, thank you so, so much! Each of you brought fresh, unique insights that I had never considered before. This book is so much better as a result of your help.

Hope you enjoy the book! It can be purchased here on Kindle. Here’s the blurb and an excerpt. Enjoy!

England, 1812

Seventeen-year-old Lady Lucinda wants her freedom back. But an orphaned young woman has no property rights in regency England; indeed, she has few rights at all. . .

After Lucinda’s father is killed in action, he leaves her under the guardianship of a former pirate, the devastatingly handsome Captain Riel Montclair. Riel is a barbaric rogue, however, as he demonstrates the very first evening he arrives. Montclair clearly has a will of iron, which frustrates Lucinda beyond measure.

Even more distressing, once Riel signs the legal papers with the solicitor, he will not only dictate her choice of a husband, but he’ll financially control her centuries old estate, Ravensbrook, too. Neither idea sits well with Lucinda, who has ruled her own life for the past two years.

Is Montclair planning to plunder Ravensbrook for his own personal gain? Additionally, Lucinda overhears him telling his disreputable-looking first mate that if the British Navy becomes suspicious of his past, he will lose his ship. What dastardly secret is he hiding?

How could her tender-hearted father have come to trust such a dangerous man? Lucinda must protect Ravensbrook, and her future, at all costs. But how far is she willing to go to get Riel out of her life, and ensure her freedom?


LUCINDA PEEKED INTO THE HALL. All clear. Good. No servants, and no Riel Montclair. Dashing on light, quick toes, she gained the door to the sumptuous guest quarters. The door handle felt smooth and cold beneath her clammy hand. Trepidation pounded in her heart. What if he was inside?

He isn’t. Stop being foolish.

Heart fluttering like a bird, Lucinda opened the door and slipped inside.

The letter. Where was it? She must find it, and quickly, for he could return at any moment.

Lucinda swiftly checked his sea bag. Nothing there. Feeling a little warm, she regained her feet and scanned the room. Where might he have put the letter? Provided it wasn’t tucked in his jacket this very moment.

The bed. She knelt and peered under it. Nothing there, either. Lucinda gripped the mattress with two hands and shoved it up with all of her strength. Her fingers fluttered, searching…searching… They brushed paper.

Spirit soaring with elation, she snatched out the folded parchment. Sure enough, Father’s flowing script read, “Mr. Chase.”

She’d found it. Lucinda sat back on her heels in triumph.

A red wax seal secured it, as Riel had said. Now that she’d found it, should she read it? Or quickly destroy it?

A small click sounded at the door. Lucinda’s pulse exploded in fright, and she whipped a glance over her shoulder. Riel! Sure enough, the door knob turned.

With horrified, shaking fingers she shoved the letter into her bodice, trying to work it down so he couldn’t see…

“Lucy.” Displeasure thundered in the deep voice.

She sprang to her feet, still turned away from him, struggling to fix her bodice.

A hard hand jerked her around to face him. “Why are you in my room?”

“I…I came to see that all is to your satisfaction…”

Alarmingly, his dark, pirate eyes fell to her bodice, still askew. Worse, a small corner of the parchment peeked out.

Buy Kindle version at Amazon here. . .

Europe 2013

Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower

Well, it’s February 2014! I meant to write this post long ago, but discovered it was just too painful. Ha! So here goes. Read on if you like a little drama…

Europe Trip

Europe Trip

Our family has wanted to visit Europe for a very long time. So, we planned and saved for many years for our Summer 2013 Europe trip. We wanted to go when the kids were old enough to enjoy it and get something out of it. So, last summer our oldest was almost 17, and the next one 15, and our youngest almost 13. I planned the whole trip from start to finish, including airfare, hotel reservations, Eurail passes… You name it, I did it. I even put together a booklet with all the information we needed, including maps, ideas of what to see, etc. Yes, perhaps that was a bit excessive, but that information proved invaluable again and again throughout the trip. We needed every scrap of information.

As mentioned elsewhere, the trip didn’t start out like we’d expected. We left on my birthday, and for a while it was touch and go on the backed up LA freeway, and we wondered if we’d get to LAX in plenty of time for the plane. It turned out we did have plenty of time. Check one off the list! Unfortunately, things went downhill from there. Frankly, it’s my fault the disaster happened, because when I booked the flights I didn’t know enough about booking airfare to realize I should have booked ‘through tickets’ to our destination (Paris). This is vital, in case flights get delayed (or cancelled) and a traveler misses a connecting flight.

Can you guess what happened next? That’s right. Our flight was delayed. First one hour. Then two. Then three. Our almost four hour cushion to get to New York to connect to our Paris flight dwindled to nothing. We asked United for help, or to get on another flight, but nothing was available. I found out later that this particular flight plan (LAX to JFK, at various time slots) had been delayed repeatedly for hours on multiple of the previous days. This wasn’t a one-time mechanical difficulty with our plane. The delay was due to scheduled maintenance that went longer than expected. (We discovered this after I filed a formal complaint with the Department of Transportation, and United reluctantly explained the reason for the delay. However, the only compensation they would offer was 3,000 free miles, or $75 off our next flight. Basically worthless. Better yet, I also discovered the standard air travel contract basically reads that the airline doesn’t have any responsibility to get a traveler anywhere on time. A word to the wise–read it yourself to see. So we had no recourse, besides bringing them to court, which would cost us even more money, and we probably wouldn’t win.)

Okay, so now you can see the painful part of the experience. However, on the plane hope was revived! I realized we still might get to JFK in time to connect with our Paris flight! (The pilot must have put on extra speed, for we got there much sooner than expected–we actually arrived 50 minutes before our scheduled Paris departure from JFK at 11:55 p.m.)

Knowing this possibility, we again asked for help from United: 1) on the flight (a nice flight attendant tried to help, but was unable to do much except offer advice), and 2) at the arrival gate. We just needed help getting our bags from one plane to another, and getting us all from Terminal 7 to Terminal 4. No help was provided. And the Air Train was out of commission that night. Ha! After finally getting our bags at 11:20 p.m. (they have to be re-checked in for an international flight) we struggled onto a Port Authority bus, (one child was still struggling to get onto the crowded bus with her suitcase–with throngs of people pressing to get on the bus, too (we learned then and there to always have an adult get on LAST)–but a wonderful New Yorker grabbed up her suitcase and helped her on, while he stayed behind. I have nothing but good to say about New Yorkers! They are the most helpful, friendly people I have ever met!). Unfortunately, the Port Authority driver didn’t know about the out-of-service Air Train, and told us wrong information about where to get off for Terminal 4. Getting to Terminal 4 turned into a circus. Needless to say, we tried our best to get there in time. We arrived at 12:10 a.m. Our Paris flight had left fifteen minutes earlier.

So there we were, on the second level of Terminal 4. Let me say, it was crickets up there. Huge, and totally deserted, with lines and lines of empty check-in counters. I was despairing. We’d come all that way, and we had all our travel arrangements made for a month in Europe! So, my husband and I decided to make new air reservations. I did it on my old iPad, using crazy airport WiFi, and made reservations for the next night on LOT Polish Air. It set us back a Lot of money that we had never budgeted for. Then my husband called around to try to get all five of us a place to sleep that night. No one had anything. Finally, finally, one place took pity on us, and allowed five of us to illegally stay in a room meant for only four. I was so grateful to find a place to lay my head that night.

Okay, I finally got that drama written out. Whew! It was a trauma, that is for sure, and really upset me. I’m happy to report, however, that the rest of our trip went considerably better. LOT Polish Air was awesome, and serves fantastic food, and we got to visit Warsaw, Poland, which hadn’t been on our original itinerary. The airport still has a feel of the Soviet bloc. Very utilitarian (glass everywhere, but it was gray outside, which made it gray inside) with accents of green. I liked it, though; it was nice.

We have so many stories, and we each wrote in journals almost every day. I took thousands of pictures on my little camera, and a few are in the slideshow. My husband took the one of the Eiffel Tower at night.

Very little of our trip went smoothly, but we became very adaptable to changing circumstances. New country, new forms of transit, new money, new language–all of this happened about every four or five days, as we moved from country to country. We made our own meals and stayed in a few hotels, a few apartments, and one hostel (in Prague–it was awesome). Like my son says, it wasn’t a vacation–it was an exploration. An adventure, to be sure. And a life-changing experience in many ways for all of us. The trip wasn’t easy, but it was wonderful. Highs (seeing Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany, and Michelangelo’s David, and the Ponte Vecchio, Cinque Terra, Barcelona and the Magic Fountain, Prague, Paris, Switzerland) all mixed with kids getting sick (I was afraid my oldest daughter had appendicitis, but she didn’t), my son became unbelievably allergic to mosquito bites in Florence, etc. In short, it was like life at home, only amplified about tenfold. It was a wonderful trip. But I probably wouldn’t do it again–at least, not like that, anyway. Maybe, someday, if we ever have enough money again (Ha! with three kids headed to college soon) I’d like to visit one country at a time. I’d love to visit London. Maybe next time. . .

By the way, Everyone in Europe speaks English. it’s the unifying language. For example, in Venice an Asian man spoke English to an Italian attendant, and the Italian spoke English back. Really, English is the language to know in Europe. Luckily that is the one (and only) language in which I’m proficient. 🙂

Oh, and the crazy hat? My husband likes beer (although he doesn’t drink much, he likes an occasional good beer now and then), so we went on a beer tour in Prague. (The kids stayed at the hostel and cooked their own dinner.) I don’t drink at all (well, I did have a couple of sips at each of the first two stops). The hat was given to the slowest drinker. Guess who that was? Yes, that’s right. Me. 🙂 It was a ton of fun. We met people from Norway and other countries, and spent hours that evening over cheap (and delicious!) pub fare talking to a couple of young guys from Sweden and Finland. It was fascinating to hear about their countries and how they view each other and the world. There is so much that goes on that we never hear about on the news. Not ever. The world is such a big place, with so many viewpoints, and different ways of living. It’s opened up my mind, and the minds of my kids, and we are the better for having visited.