Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Going Dark…

Life has been exciting for us…

we’ve seen a lot of the world that many people will never have the opportunity;

we’ve travelled…

we’ve met new friends…

we’ve kept old ones…

we’ve been threatened…

we’ve been praised…

we’ve been loved…

we’ve been adventurous…

we’ve tried new foods…

we’ve taken chances…

we’ve helped friends…

we’ve made new family…

we’ve given opportunities…

we’ve said good-byes…

we’ve started businesses…

we’ve laughed a lot…

we’ve shed some tears…

we’ve been stressed…

we’ve been happy…

…but thru it all we’ve had each other.  we have our health. we have our love. we have our boys. we have our family. we have our friends. we have determination. we have a home. we have life.  WE HAVE HOPE…

…and now it’s time for something new…

We are back in the USA…we are BACK friends…and with that, I say, “Farewell Kochel Blog…”…I will be hauling my boys around, making a new life, working and writing about ALL of our adventures (the good, the bad and the scary) while living overseas!  Stay tuned.

Until then…thanks for following us on our journey…I’ll check back in every now and then with a tidbit of our life (past or present!)…

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Friday, July 26, 2013

The Budding Photogs

Call it a digital era, but my boys LOVE to take photos…LOVE it…and secretly, I like it…I like picking up my phone or my camera to find a little smile that one of the brothers captured…or that they jump into my lap and say, “Say cheese, Mama.”…so we can take a photo together…so on days that I feel like this…

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I’m glad that I have these reminders…

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That you only live once…that family is so much more important than money…that these smiles are what I live for…that life goes by too fast…that time slips away…that good character is far more valuable than any jewels…that no matter what happens to me in this life, I will fight for THIS…for THESE guys…for these smiles, the fingers, these toes, these HEARTS…I will fight to make them good people, to be compassionate, to have big hearts, to give more than take and what it means to be a good true friend and truly truly truly love with your whole being…I know this is a big challenge, but I wouldn’t take any job in the world over this.

*Disclaimer…all photos contained herein were taken or requested by Zachary, Trevor or Brandon Kochel = )

Happy Birthday America

One of the things we REALLY miss about living overseas are the parties we share with our friends and family.  We always take turns hosting and Jimmy & Zachary are my little “party lovers” who love to have people over.  Bust out the BBQ, make a pitcher of margaritas, squash up some avocados and let the celebrating begin!

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We stayed up SUPER late to catch the fireworks show…

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…and we wished the daddy was here too…

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Happy Birthday America…to be an American is truly a blessed gift…I’m proud I’m American and I’m proud of how far we’ve come, what we stand for and how it’s in our nature to help.  I’m happy I’m free, I love that we have choices, that we have rights and that we call this place HOME…no place is perfect, but we’ve tried real hard to make it pretty damn fantastic. 

About me…

Well, nothing new…I’m OCD, have to be organized, have to have the house clean, have to have a list, have to be one step ahead of the game.  HAVE to be…which is why I haven’t blogged in a month…I’ve got too much going on and can’t focus…I’d really love to be able to sit down and just write this every day…write something, leave a note, share a smiley, write a short story…but I can’t…I’m at war with myself.  I.NEED.CONTROL.!!!  Which, if I’m ever going to finish that book I started that you all have told me to write, I need to lose some control!  You know the old saying, “Truth is stranger than fiction.”?…yeah, well, hmmmmm!!! Flirt male 

I’m loving on my boys, missing the daddy and hoping that soon, SO soon, I will have some control back in my life…

Until then, I will continue being…

  • the chef
  • the dishwasher
  • the butt wiper
  • the play mate
  • the disciplinarian
  • the crazy mama
  • the picture take
  • the referee
  • the phone caller
  • the organizer
  • the planner
  • the buddy
  • the meany
  • the everything-that-needs-to-be-done-with-a-smile-on-my-face-I-have-no-other-choice-but-to-embrace-it mama!  (and I probably wouldn’t change that either…remember, I NEED CONTROL!)

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What to do…what to do…

Living in Cambodia, I asked this question daily…what am I gonna do with the boys today?  The difference between being here and in Phnom Penh is that we have a LOT more choices, more friends, more places, more family and more everything…not that that is a good thing or a bad thing…we just have more choices…and the boys are loving THAT too!

Whether it’s a hurricane simulator…

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Face painting at the gym…

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Nights out with friends…

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Silly faces on the iPad…

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Coffee/Target dates with my oldest boo…

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Golf and golf cart rides…

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Fire trucks at the mall…

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Looking for coyotes at night (not really, but that’s what they think we’re doing…)

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Ice cream dates and running around…(that’s a crazy fire in the sky…)

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Swim time with new friends…

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Chuck E. Cheeses…can’t go wrong there!

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Park amphitheaters with ducks to chase around…and poop on your feet (and he thought in his ears…how does one get duck poop in their ears?)

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Special date with my littlest boo…

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Chocolate pudding pie…MMMMMMM…

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Did I say we were having a fun summer already?  Oh, yeah…but I just can’t get enough!