Just Us Barkers Our Little Corner of the Web

Pick A Side, Any Side

I’ve been running for over nine years. There were some earlier years, but I don’t think my stint in college counts. Back in the day, I’d jump on a treadmill and pump out one whole whopping mile and feel like a master. So, those early days don’t really count. I used to be a dedicated treadmill runner, especially when the pollen count was astronomically high, but I’ve broadened my horizons. More recently, I have preferred to run outdoors, despite some misadventures. I enjoy being outside and seeing those lovely black swans swimming in the pond (which by the way, I just discovered were fake).

While living in Germany, and then in Greece, I have logged some serious mileage. I have seen some interesting sights on my running adventures and have had some strange stories to share. Since being back in Germany I have noticed a new trend. Well, at least I never noticed this before, and definitely not in Greece. Over the past two years I have noticed that the German runners are divided on the issue of which side of the road, path, or trail to run on. Continue reading

All Quiet on the Western Front

Oh the horror of it all!

Where are all of our posts?

What have we really been doing for a year (or two)?

I’ll tell you the ugly, plain, wart-covered truth – we’re lazy. Okay, I’m lazy. We have so much going on and we want to share it with you. Really, we do. I do. I’m just going to use that “royal we” thing when referring to myself, unless I’m talking about the family then it’s just “we” or “us”.

Just roll with it peeps.

So, what have we been up to all this time? Well . . . cooking, some travelling, eating, preparing for homeschooling, reading, cooking, book reviewing, eating, pet doctoring, did I mention cooking and eating? Oh yes, I have been cleaning too, but that’s one of those items that you just don’t mention. I guess it’s an unmentionable. When you come right down to it, no one wants to hear about that red M&M that Gavin found under the couch. The same couch that has been swept underneath on a regular basis by me. Can’t blame the kids for that one. Especially when the M&M probably came from me, too.

Oh yeah and we’ve been tinkering in the garden. We planted several veggies and herbs this spring. We are super excited about the fruits of our labor (pun intended!).

Bear with me/us and I/we as we actually share our on-going adventures you.

Peace out,


Hectic Week – Moving Time!

Well, this has been one very hectic week for the Barker clan. For those that don’t know already, we are in the process of moving to Chania, on the island of Crete in Greece. This has been in the works for some time now, but just recently started coming together.

When we got back from our trip to Arizona, I finally got my official job offer and subsequent orders to take us to Crete. With orders in hand, I was able to schedule the pickup of our household goods just in the nick of time, since our lease was already set to terminate at the end of August. So, the packers were scheduled to come to our house on the 27th and 28th of August.

They got there a little bit late on the 27th, but quickly got to work. But that was probably the only quick thing about it. Overall, it was a REALLY slow process, with lots of breaks and discussions. They called it quits at about 8:30 at night the first day. The second day they got there around 8:00 in the morning and worked until 11:00 at night, but did get everything all packed up. I felt bad for everyone in the neighborhood, though, as they pounded the nails in on the crates at such a late hour. Nobody got a lot of sleep that night!

While the packers were there, I shipped the first of our cars. I shipped my PT Cruiser myself, which cost us  €1100.00; for those that don’t deal in Euro, the exchange rate is really poor right now so I paid $1,653.89 to have my car shipped from Heidelberg, Germany to Piraeus, Greece. That still leaves me having to either take the ferry or fly to Piraeus, clear the car through customs, and take it back to Crete on the ferry. Fun stuff! I just hope I can figure it all out!

Continue reading

Sarah's Birthday



Holgar and Angelyn Kuhn from our church invited us to their daughter Sarah’s birthday down by the Neckar River.  It was such a beautiful place to hang out; quite a popular place actually!  We had been wanting to go hang out down there for years, but for some reason or another we never made it.  Pretty sad considering it is only about 20 minutes from our house…  Anyways, enjoy the photos!

View the photos…

Church Canoe Trip

On the 1st of September, we took a canoe trip with our church, Victory International.  We were a little hesitant at first because we weren’t sure if we should take just Tristan or be brave and take Gavin, too.  In the end, we took both the boys and were so impressed by how well they both did.  The canoe ride itself was on the Neckar River and it took about 3 hours to get through.  We really had a great time, but what did suck was the 3 places we had to stop and pull the canoe along some rocks to get to the other side of some dams.  When I say that, I mean dad had to lug the huge, heavy, back breaking (am I getting any sympathy yet?) canoe.  Although I am just now finally getting over all the aches and pains (1 month later!  I must be getting old…), I am so glad we did it.

Afterwards we had a little barbecue nearby.  It sprinkled for just a little bit, but other than that the weather and the company was fantastic.  We really are enjoying all of the new family members we have at the new church.

FYI – I didn’t get any pictures along the way because my camera was in a big plastic barrel that was too hard to keep getting in and out of.  Oh well…