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roaming the world and enjoying the scenery...

category archive listing Category Archives: Family

Blood Moon

Yes, we woke up for the Super Moon Eclipse at 4.47 this morning. And yes, we even got Breck out of bed for it. Kind of a cool way to start the week!

Welcome to Poland!

So we made it! We are now at the American School of Warsaw, and jumping in with both feet. Our incoming class of new teachers has had quite a bit of fun getting to know each other, and we’ve had full social calendars for the first few weeks. Lots of vodka has been involved.

Summer 2015

So there was soooo much going on – we traveled to Chicago (in the previous post), we drove out to Montana with Christy and the girls, she and Rob got married, we prepped Alea for college, and we finalized everything for our move to Poland. Couple with that the fact that our truck threw its transmission and we were without a vehicle for the last week, and you’ve got a pretty crazy period of time. Here are a few pictures from all those adventures…

Father’s Day visit to Chicago

Susan, Breck, and I ran over to Chicago this past weekend to see Robert and Christy and all the kids. We managed to squeeze in a day at Great America, a visit to the Field Museum, and a Cubs game, so I think we did pretty well!

Alea’s high school graduation!

Alea finishes up her years at JIS with a beautiful evening of pomp!

Last day of school pictures together

Well, today is the day.

After 12 years, Breck and Alea drove with me to school this morning for the last time. Alea graduates on Saturday, leaves on Monday for the US, and enrolls at Montana State University in the fall. Breck, Susan, and I are in Jakarta for another 2 weeks before summer vacation in Minnesota/Montana and then a move to Warsaw. Life as we’ve known it is being shaken up.

As is our tradition, the kids took a picture together before heading off. It is certainly a bittersweet moment, as it is the final one of them together at the end of a school year. In the next post down, I’ve compiled all the pictures from when they started together in Belgrade, oh so many years ago.

Alea and Breck on their last day together in school, Jakarta 2015

Fourplay party!

Great Fourplay party this afternoon, with super food and drink, slippery floors, and even the muff bag! Our group has had a few members move on over the years, but also gained a few babies, so all is good.

 

The new Groovy Gecko bar is here!

We’re inaugurating the new Groovy Gecko bar today – it came in time for all the end of year parties, and will travel with us to Poland this summer! We had it custom-built here in Jakarta as a memento of fun times around our outdoor bar: curved face, folding wings, glass top, and even engraved Indonesian geckos. A great gathering place, and Susan’s combination going-away and 50th birthday present!

Last Diving off Gili Trawangan

Our final spring break in Indonesia, and we went to one of our favorite places for a week of diving and relaxation.

Afternoon at the Museum

We headed downtown on a sunny Sunday to take in the Indonesian National Museum.

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to those of you celebrating today! Καλά Χριστούγεννα and Срећан Божић from the tropics.

Thai Christmas decorations

Happy Anniversary!

We’re so busy enjoying the Thai sun and surf that we’ve posted very little during our trip. Here are 4 quick shots from our dives – under stunning cliffs, we saw sharks, rockfish, and Susan finally laid eyes on a real-life seahorse! That makes for a pretty special anniversary present, right honey?

Wayfarin’ to Warsaw!!

Big Stutz family news this morning – Susan and I have accepted jobs at the American School of Warsaw for the 2015-16 school year! Alea will graduate a JIS Dragon, but Breck will be a Warsaw Warrior.

We must have had a premonition, as we’re wearing the school colors of white, red, and black in the holiday photo we took this weekend:

All decked out in red and black batik!

Susan in the States

Suz is in Minnesota for about a month, and got her first taste of snow in years. She made sure we knew all about the fun she was having, so we had to remind her of what she as missing too!

Diving in Bali – October 2014

We headed to the tropical paradise of Bali for our autumn break, and spent a few of those days on the north shore diving. We’ve been to this area several times before, but not for diving. While we didn’t see the huge schools of fish that we’ve encountered in other places, we did come across plenty of colorful mini-reef life that kept our eyes occupied and our camera busy.

Tetons and Yellowstone

Finally took the whole family to the Tetons and Yellowstone this summer. Here are the traditional signature photos of each park:

 

Grandma and Grandpa’s cabin

Heading up to Grandma and Grandpa’s lake cabin always gives us a great introduction to the joys of summer!

Easter @ the cabin

We hippity-hopped up to JIS’s cabin in the mountains for the 3-day weekend with a group of friends who we’ve done this with for the past 2 years. Despite some early issues (like a 3-hour traffic jam), we made it up and spent a few days eating(!), drinking, and conversing. Good times!

Komodo dragons and such

In addition to all the cool diving that we did, we also had the chance to see some pretty extraordinary sights over spring break. This album is all from our “above water” camera, to complement the diving shots posted the other day…

Manta Rays in action

We took a few snippets of video of our dive to Manta Point. Here’s a 2 minute look at what we saw (with bonus narration!). Susan, Alea, and Breck are all in here (if only fleetingly).

 

Flores – Spring Break diving

We headed to the Indonesian island of Flores for a week in the sun. One of our “must do in Indonesia” items was to see Komodo dragons in the wild, so that was the impetus for this trip. The first pictures, however, will be from our diving adventures. We left from Labuan Bajo and went under the sea on 3 days (only 2 with a working camera!), and saw some wondrous stuff.

Unexpected guest

Check out who showed up for dinner at the Groovy Gecko last night? Don’t worry, no escargot was served, and the kids named him “Gustav.” New family pet, I guess.

Gustav in all his glory

Vietnam trip first peek

We’re back from a superb 3 weeks in Vietnam, and wanted to get a few shots posted. We have a JIS photo contest for vacation shots, and I was looking through pictures for it; these are some of the ones that didn’t make the final cut, but are still pretty cool. There are specific categories for entries, and so there are no “family shots” in this bunch, but these give a flavor of our travels. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, Alea and Breck. New tablets for enjoyment during our winter break vacation. Spending the morning downloading apps, uploading books, and getting all the custom settings just right. Off tomorrow for 3 weeks in Vietnam!!

Proud owners of new Samsung Tab 3's

Holiday Greetings for 2013!

Happy New Year! Welcome to the Year of the Horse!

We hope this finds family and friends around the world enjoying peace, health, and joy as we embark on a new year.

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The family in Ha Long bay, VietnamOur family continues to live, work, and thrive in Jakarta, Indonesia. This is our third year at Jakarta International School. Dave happily remains with MS math, Susan welcomed a move to Kindergarten, and Alea and Breck work hard in 11th and 9th grades respectively. Alea and Breck both play in the band and enjoy the rock-climbing club.

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Alea squeezes Model United Nations and pilates into her busy IB/AP schedule. She also joined Tri-M music honors society and JIS orchestra, a service group helping local children explore instruments and music. Breck joined the magic club and has also become quite the stage lighting and ‘green screen’ expert. He has been asked to support the theater and tech departments at both the elementary and high school. He will work at upcoming shows of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Wizard of Oz.

Alea checks out the coral growth..

Our family loves living life overseas as global nomads. We travel every chance we get and appreciate the diversity SE Asia offers. We launched 2013 in Cambodia and Laos, dove the walls off Bunaken, Sulawesi in April, and returned to Amed, Bali for more diving in October. We left on Dec 21 for three weeks of travel through Vietnam. We agree that kayaking in Ha Long Bay, clamoring through mud caves in Phong Nha, rock-climbing on an island in Long Ha Bay, biking through rice paddies near Hoi An, and eating our way through Ha Noi street food were absolute highlights!

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Breck and Alea, given a taste in their social studies classes, were especially intrigued with the (recent) history of this amazing country. We toured Vinh Moc tunnels near the 17th parallel and saw bomb craters (currently used as fish farms) all over Quang Nam province. We believe one of the benefits of living overseas is the multiple perspectives we gain and develop about any historical event or situation.

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Up at the cabin...Of course, summers in the USA always reminds us how blessed we are to have family. We always enjoy our time in MT, but this summer was especially rewarding because we welcomed Alvin Fletcher to the Strachan-Stutz clan. While we are biased, we do believe he bears a remarkably handsome resemblance to Breck. As always, we thank and celebrate the Helena Stutzes who take incredible care of us when we show up. A highlight of this summer was time spent with Blanche and the nieces and nephews at Hauser and Clancy Recreational areas. Hard to believe, but the kids have never been to Yellowstone; we think this summer is the year…

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Minnesota is always good to us, but we must admit that Door County, Wisconsin is pretty amazing. We spent a fabulous week there with the south-side Wagners fishing, cherry picking, and shopping. Best of all – we got all the smoked salmon we brought back through customs in Indonesia. Yum!!! Valleyfair with the Regan’s topped the kids’ ‘thriller’ hit-list and deck-time racing crawdads with the cousins at Grandpa and Grandma’s cabin on Lake Vermilion filled the ‘You’ll never guess what WE did’ quotient. Things as simple as shopping downtown, going to a garage sale, or attending a lake-side concert after berry picking take on a whole new meaning when enjoyed with family!

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The Minnesota clanWe plan at least one more year in Indonesia. Alea will graduate next year from JIS; it is exciting to think about the future. We have spent time in the USA these past few summers looking at colleges and universities for the kids and retirement homes for the parents. Time will tell!

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We wish everyone all the joy and love of this season. We are fortunate and we know it. We hope you feel the same!