In February 1994, our family celebrated two birthdays – for both my son David and for my wife – here’s the house decorated the night before David’s birthday for him to wake up to; this is the final posting of my Ramstein AB photos, because by this time we had received our orders to the 52nd OSS at Spangdahlem AB – and we would soon be packing up our household for our fifth USAFE assignment.
Here’s our dining room decorated for celebrating two family birthdays, with two tables set for my wife’s family to arrive and enjoy a birthday, “coffee and cake” – which has always been my favorite German tradition! 🙂
To pause in the late afternoon – traditionally at 4:00 p.m. – and have cake, cookies or a small open-face sandwich, along with coffee or another beverage; makes so much sense to me…to take a moment to relax, enjoy conversation with the family and, “recharge your batteries” going into the early evening.
David was now seven years old, and here in this picture waits to make a wish prior to blowing out the single candle on his very own special birthday cake; while his Oma – German for grandmother – looks on.
David next blows out seven candles on his, “second” birthday cake; and seems to enjoy the challenge of blowing them all out with a single breath – while his grandmother and great-grandmother look on at the table.
David waits – seemingly impatiently – for me to put the camera away, so he can get down to the business of enjoying his very own birthday cake – and now almost 16 years later – he may one day understand why parents try to capture on film the special moments while their children are growing up.
David’s little cousin eats a cupcake while wearing her, “Carnival” costume – which is celebrated during the week beginning on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday – the week prior to the start of Lent.
We also celebrated my wife’s birthday which is close to David’s, and I took a picture of the pink roses that I gave her for her birthday.
David’s Opa helps him sort through the instructions for a technical toy that he received as a present; while David’s little cousin looks on wearing her, “Carnival” costume.
David’s aunt helps with the process of identifying all of the individual pieces of the toy, in order for David to be able to put together the intricate electrical toy he received for his birthday.
David’s Oma took a look at the steady progress on his project too; and everyone in the family was of course very happy to know that we’d be moving the next month to Spangdahlem AB – and back to the Eifel.
David’s toy required batteries and involved a small electric motor, which increased the level of difficulty to figure out where all the pieces went and fit together so it would work correctly – with help here from his little cousin and his Opa.
David talks to a relative on the phone in our foyer, who has called to say, “Happy Birthday” to him; my assignment with the 86th OSS lasted only a single year – with only nine months living in the house in Albersbach – because the Ramstein AB F-16s were transferred to Aviano AB, Italy.
I always volunteered for the unfilled positions and difficult USAFE assignments that no one else seemed to want to fill – which was a challenge for me professionally because they were always difficult and important, “rated postions” that required an aircrew member to fill; but the end result was that our family was able to remain within USAFE for a total of 16 years – about half in Germany and half in England. 🙂