My Year in Review – 2014

2014, I name you:

The year we lived in four countries. 

Slovenia > Germany > USA > Italy

The beginning of 2014:

The beginning of 2014 was a whirl wind. We were still in Ljubljana, stressed and going over 60 days with no paycheck. It was one of the hardest hockey seasons we hope to ever experience. We finally decided it was time to figure something out. In February it was decided Jerry would head back to the states to play for the rest of the season. I would stay in Ljubljana for a few days to say goodbye to my friends and such.

Remember what happens next? Jerry left. I was heading downtown for a coffee with two of my friends and … my phone rang. It was Jerry’s agent. “Where’s Jerry”…. “On a plane”…. “F***”…. “WHAT?”… “There’s a team for him in Germany”… Jerry landed in Toronto. Spent the night. Jumped on a plane the next morning to head back to Europe.

We were heading to Krefeld, Germany for the rest of the hockey season.

At the time I couldn’t wait to get out of Ljubljana and find peace again (okay, and a paycheck for my husband….). But, the truth is… it was extremely difficult for me to leave Ljubljana. I cried the entire day until Miika and I headed to the airport. This was it. The chances of us ever playing here again are slim. Despite all that crap we went through, it seemed so small compared to the friendships and memories we made there. We grew up there, it was our first European home, it changed us… in the most beautiful ways possible. People in bakeries knew my name, the grocery store knew I wasn’t slovenian but I tried so hard with my fake accent and butchered words, and we had 20 kids that looked up to both Jerry and I with every bit of their little souls.

So, I decided at the airport that night as I was leaving….. “here is a little piece of my heart Slovenia, keep it safe”. 

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Arrived in Krefeld:

I won’t lie. I was scared. Coming in to a hockey team with barely 3 months left? All of these people have formed bonds and we are just supposed to show up. It can be a weird situation. Boy, was I wrong.

Everyone in Krefeld took Jerry and I in like we had been a part of the team the entire season. First of all, the girls were ALL amazing. I couldn’t believe what a great group of girls they were. They never made me feel “new” or like I didn’t belong. It was a wonderful experience for me in that sense. We knew that Jerry might not even play a single game while we were there but it was for the experience and an opportunity we couldn’t pass up. Thank God we didn’t. While there were days that it was hard for Jerry to sit in the stands and watch, it ended up being extremely rewarding. It just so happened that the starting goalie got hurt, so Jerry ended up on the bench one night. 5 minutes into the game…. Jerry had to go in.

Sweat. Tears. Shaking. Smiling. Pure Bliss. 

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The girls sitting next to me probably thought I was going to pee my pants but I tried to remain calm. Jerry just got to step on the ice for a league he had a goal of reaching. A “dream” you could say. It was a great game and he ended up playing a couple of more after that. Aside from hockey we met some great people. The owners of our apartment were amazing, two people we will never forget. Jerry really loved the coach. The staff was wonderful. There were a lot of positive things.

Did I mention Karneval? Yeah, one of the best/wild days of my entire life! We all had so much fun. Playoffs were insane. The boys were expected to go further but unfortunately did not. They had a week or two of team/fan parties after the season… and then we’d be heading back to America for the summer.

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Krefeld was a great memory of 2014, something we will never forget.

Que the panic about next hockey season. 

Back to the USA:

We flew home the day before my 24th birthday.

The first thing we did (literally on the way home from the airport) was have my mom stop at Arby’s. I celebrated my birthday the next day…. and two days later it was back to work for this girl. I was so happy to be back in my groove! I truly enjoy working. I always have. I love my “work” friends, even though I hate calling them that because they are really just some of my best friends.

I worked a lot this summer. Miika and I did our annual dog walks. Jerry spent time with all his roller hockey guys, 3 tournaments and USA in Czech Republic (he has no fun at all)! I tagged along for the tournament in Florida. Which was nothing short of F-U-N. Jerry loves the boys he spends his summer with – the boys of summer – as I call them. We celebrated family birthday’s, hung out with friends, spent time with family and tried to enjoy our summer as much as possible. We went to concerts, spent time at my family lake house, and ate at a lot of our favorite places. Like I said, I worked… a lot.

We celebrated our FIRST anniversary! In Kings Island.

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Where we got the phone call that we would 99% be heading to Italy for the hockey season.

Italy it was – Brunico to be exact.

I spent my last week of work in Nashville then we packed up and headed to Italy.

Italy:

We arrived in Brunico mid August. It’s a great city. Small but beautiful. You are close to so many awesome places. The team has been having  great season and Jerry is also having a great season himself. Mostly it’s just been a relief to have all the normalcies. A paycheck, gear for Jerry to play with, a decent apartment (minus the neighbors)… those type of things. The staff has been wonderful and Jerry loves his hockey coach.

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Every year has its different challenges. If I absolutely love everything one hockey season, check me for a fever. You go through your little bouts of homesick-ness and missing home, to never wanting to go home, back to missing your friends and family…. every year. We live extremely close to some of our best friends who live in Bolzano and play hockey there. We even got to back to Ljubljana this month to see all of our friends! We’ve experienced some great stuff this year! At the top of that list, Oktoberfest. So glad we got to experience that! Next to Karneval in Krefeld, one of my favorite days ever. Florence in November was beautiful. We still have some time to do a couple more trips before the end up the season. Which… is approaching really fast.

After Oktoberfest…. comes baby Kuhn! LOL.

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In late October we found out we are expecting! As you probably know or read in my last post. It was a huge surprise. A good surprise! It gives us so much to look forward to in 2015.

I’m ready for a new year and a fresh start. Ha, how cliche right? Seriously though I’am! In no way was 2014 horrible but it wasn’t always easy.

I’m looking forward too:

Turning 25

Watching my belly grow

The birth of our baby

FInding out where the 2015 hockey season is going to take us

Summer at home with my family

Being a step closer to completing college

Letting go of people who no longer serve a purpose in my life

Saying goodbye to any of 2014 stresses and moving forward

Bonding with my amazing husband

Watching Miika become a big sister

So this is 2014 in a very small nutshell. A lot happened this year! All I know is, I have no idea where my year went. It was great and it was crappy. Lots of smiles and lots of tears. Another year of growing!

This New Year’s eve will be a little different from the past years, as I won’t be enjoying any wine or champaign but I’m sure it will be just as wonderful!

Here’s to the next 365 days! 

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I (we) wish you all a very happy New Year! Say goodbye to all of those things you don’t want to bring to 2015 and hello to all the new. Many blessings and positive vibes.

– Amanda …. (Jerry + Miika) ❤

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Baby Kuhn coming July 2015

Soon there will be two of us “traveling between the pipes” and cheering in the stands.

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The day I found out I was pregnant:

It’s actually pretty “funny”. I took a pregnancy test and it said negative. So, I threw it back in the box and was going to tell Jerry later when he got home from his workout. Well, when jerry got home, I pulled the stick back out of the box and it had a positive sign. Guess I didn’t wait long enough….

Um, oops. I thought it was negative and now I’m here with a stick in my hand in front of my husband … and, it says positive. I kept rubbing my eyes and shaking the stick. Jerry just kept smiling like a kid in a candy store. I called my girlfriend here (she’s like my big sister I never had) and said, “um, does this mean I’m pregnant”? She said, “Amanda, are you kidding? Yes. It does”. So off to the pharmacy I go to get another test. Yep, it was positive. Did I mention this was a game day? Jerry was so excited but was trying to remain calm because he had a game and needed to stay in “the zone”. We even said, “can we do this all over later and relive this moment tonight”? The best part? Jerry went to his game and got a shutout! I feel that was the best response to finding out your pregnant on the day of a game. And then, he got a second one the next game day.

PS: I might have taken 4 more pregnancy tests.

PPS: FOUR people had told me they had a dream I was pregnant. One girlfriend (that I’ve actually never met in person) messaged me on Facebook a couple of weeks before I found out and told me that she had a dream I was pregnant. She was actually one of the first people I told, I felt it was only fair to tell her that her dreams were right! (hey hey chelsea rae! <3)

How did we feel:

Jerry and I were not planning to get pregnant. I mean, we weren’t trying or worried about it. We were not preventing it either, I had stopped taking my birth control back in February because I have been on it since the age of 14 and if you go on the internet and read about it for long enough, you would had told me to go off of it too. However, the only reason I was on it for so long was because it regulated my Endometriosis. Which brings up another topic. After a few surgeries and a doctor telling me “Oh … well… it might be pretty difficult to get pregnant”. I never thought I’d get pregnant so quickly or without “help”. My biggest fear the past few years, actually since the day I knew I was going to spend the rest of my life with Jerry and have his children, was that I wouldn’t be able to have kids or that it would at least not be done on my own. I’ve had friends that have had to go through hell and back to get pregnant and friends that have lost their precious babies before they got to meet them. So, finding out I was pregnant and now seeing our baby in 3D has taken that weight off my shoulders.  I know how blessed and fortunate Jerry and I are for being able to do this on our own, with no stress or complications.

My husband has had baby fever for quite sometime, so to say that this is the best christmas present of all time is an understatement.

Keeping this a secret has not been easy. Especially because I found out at 3 weeks! To keep it a secret from everyone in America was fairly simple because I don’t have to see anyone. However, now I live in a village where I see the same people every single day. When I’m ordering a coffee with no caffeine and I don’t have a glass of wine in hand at a hockey game, it’s pretty much a dead give away! Being the worst liar ever, doesn’t help. For a while, I was starting to feel like I was living a double life. So many people here knew and only our family and a couple of friends back in America knew. I can’t lie, we told all of our friends in Slovenia while we were there visiting this week. Jerry was bursting at the seams to tell all of our friends and was pretty much telling anyone who cared to listen to us.

My european doctor experience: 

My first appointment to find out if I was indeed pregnant was… interesting. I’ve had a girl doctor my entire life, and now I had a male looking at my lady bits and my husband sitting next to me. The scariest part? Or well, the… funniest? My doctor said okay, pants off and get on the table! Um, I’m sorry…. “is there a sheet to cover up with”? Nope! :just get up here and put your feet in these stirrups with everything hanging out: Lol! I grabbed my sweater…. and tried to cover up what I could. I told him that in America we have little sheets that cover our bottom halfs while the doctor is examining. See the things I have to go through on a daily basis over here? 😉 Everything is a learning experience and usually ends up in us laughing at ourselves.

Here (at least in brunico) they are able to a do blood test that tells me that if I’m able to indulge in the things we all think we can’t eat while pregnant (but actually you can as long as you don’t carry the gene/chromosome). Sushi, red (bloody) meat, salami, etc. It’s a good thing I don’t eat red meat and I’m not so keen on sushi places over here because I tested positive and cannot eat any of that! All of my other blood work came back  great.

My last doctor’s appointment was at about 6-7 weeks, that was the first time we saw the baby and then yesterday. We had been waiting for yesterdays appointment, for what felt like, forever! We wanted to just get there, make sure everything was okay and finally announce to the world that we are expecting!

Yesterday’s appointment was amazing! My doctor is so wonderful. All the doctors over here are wonderful. He let us see the baby in 3D images, which was insane. The heart beat was so strong and the baby was moving all over the place. I got my “mother book” that they give to all expecting mothers and it tracks everything. The size of the baby, my weight, pictures, everything! It’s great to have.

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BOY OR GIRL!?!?:

We don’t know yet. We aren’t telling. Don’t ask.

As for now, don’t ask for names either 😉

My body:

Maybe this is God finally paying be back for all my good deeds? I haven’t been sick once, barely nauseous and for the most part I don’t even feel pregnant. Minus my… tatas. Those hurt, and have already outgrown my bras. Ouchie! The ONLY other symptom I have had is exhaustion. Holy crap. Like, can’t get off the couch, would lay here all day long, exhaustion. It hits you hard. For an active person, who is always on the go, it was rough at first. But, I can slowly feel it wearing off, at least I think so…

Still no bump. Just starting to look like I ate too many donuts at Tim Horton’s! But, I’ve only gained 1 pound…. I’m sticking to all my same routine. Gym a couple days a week, my daily walks with Miika and now I’ve even added in Swimming one day a week!

Miika:

Miika knows. She doesn’t know specifically that I’am pregnant but she knows that my body is changing. Dogs amazing sense of smell leads them to know usually before you even do, that something is changing in your body. For the past 8 weeks Miika has been sleeping on me, every single night. Not just on my feet, on my stomach, and if I’m on my stomach, she sleeps on my back, or in my armpit. We are going to start preparing Miika for the baby now, we already started talking with Alenka from Slovenia who is our go-to for all dog questions. We want Miika to be the best big sister she can be and that has to start with us!

In the next weeks:

These next few weeks I hope to just be sticking to my routine still! I have a couple of weeks of school and I’m finished (and passed) my german course. I’m busy with work but now my kids will also have off of school and be on holiday for Christmas. So, I won’t be seeing all of them and will have more free time. My friend Megan is coming from Detroit after Christmas and we can’t wait to have her! My next doctors appointment is only for a check up with blood pressure, weight, and all of that. Then a few weeks after (around 20 weeks) we get to have another ultra sound. We will probably be able to know the sex by then. Now that I’m almost over with my first trimester, I’ve decided to start a pregnancy journal. One that I can write in every day or every other day and look back on whenever I want. I want to remember this journey every step of the way.

I had a view wise owls tells me that I’m going to receive a LOT of advice, most of that advice will be unwanted. Boy, they weren’t kidding! People find out a woman is pregnant and suddenly have a PHD in pregnancy! Everyone relax. So far the best advice I’ve received? “Crack babies are born everyday” and “Do whatever your body tells you is okay”.

For once, I’m wishing the hockey season away. I want to share my pregnancy with my parents, siblings, family and friends. But by the time I get home I’ll be almost 7 months! Aside from that, I’m really trying to enjoy this moment as much as I(we) can. Now it…for the most part… feels real. I’m kind of waiting for my belly to pop over night, then I think I’ll actually feel pregnant!

So it’s true:

Baby Kuhn coming early July 2015! 

Alright baby Kuhn, you be good to me! Here we go…. 

Florence // Firenze, Italy

It’s been a while! Honestly, I’ve been so busy but I’m ready to catch you up on our life in Brunico. The good, the bad, the fun, the travels, oh.. and the hockey.

For this years November break we decided to head to Florence, Italy. Everyone has told us to see Italy while we are living here, everything else can wait.

We took the “fast train” from Bolzano to Florence. I can’t say that Miika absolutely loved her first train ride but she did wonderful! I’d let her sneak up on the seat with me when no one was watching. We know that princess does not like sitting on the floor!

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We arrived in Florence around noon and took a taxi to our beautiful hotel! A very typical, italian (not updated) style hotel right on the side of the river. Let’s be honest, I picked the hotel based on the fact that it said “dog friendly, pets free!”. However, the staff was absolutely amazing and I knew that they only thing we’d be doing there was sleeping. I would recommend the hotel to anyone who isn’t looking for something fancy and a clean, quiet, walking distance hotel in Florence. The name of the hotel is, Hotel Silla.

We were extremely lucky that our first day there it was nothing but sunshine!

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We spent the our first day hitting a lot of important sights and things to see. Not without stopping at Subway of course.

Must see’s while you are in Florence: The Duomo, Ponte Vecchio, Museums, Churches, we saw as much as we could in two days.

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Piazzale Michelangelo was my favorite sight and view, don’t miss it if you ever visit Florence. I loved that we were just a nice walk away from the this sight as it was on the same side of the river as our hotel. It is a lot of stairs but it’s great exercise and was perfect for getting a good walk in with Miika. However, the view should be enough persuasion to make you go! You get to see the entire city of Florence.

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Jerry and I had two amazing dinners. Our first night we had Hard Rock Cafe and the second night we ate a highly recommended restaurant that I would recommend to everyone as well. It’s a must while in Florence but a small hole in the wall so I doubt you would find it if someone didn’t recommend it to you. The most popular dish to eat in Florence is a Florentina Steak but since I don’t eat steak I checked to make sure there was a lot more on the menu! The pasta was amazing and Jerry’s Florentina steak with blueberry sauce was a big hit.

The restaurant is called: Acqua Al 2

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The next day was a rainy one, might I add that every November break it rains on us? Haha. Rain doesn’t stop us though, that just means shopping time! You could shop for days in Florence.. it never ends!

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Towards the end of the day the rain seized and we went out for a long walk, miika included!

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While in Florence we witnessed an engagement! Super cute and Jerry took pictures of them that we later sent to them. I would have been so happy if someone was able to capture mine and Jerry’s engagement so quickly like that! They were so happy we took photos. Yes, I cried.

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Two days wasn’t quite enough in Florence, I’d say three or four to see absolutely everything.  I’m not really into galleries and art, so we didn’t even see a lot of that stuff. Which is why I know you would probably need another day or two! Florence is beautiful, the people are nice, there are a lot of Americans there, especially students who attend the University. The food is amazing and there is so much too see! It is definitely a favorite of mine but didn’t top Venice! If you are in Florence for a couple of days there are a lot of organized tours to see near by places such as, Pisa or even do a wine tour in the vineyards of Tuscany!

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Florence: Check!

Stay tuned, I have a lot of catching up to do!

Until then,

Amanda