Saturday, October 31, 2015

Ich lebe noch....

I have not posted in nearly 2 year now. Life with 2 kids under the age of 3 took hold I suppose. In a strange series of events today I ended up using my husbands pc and accidently logged into my old facebook which is linked to this blog. I was met with comments and messages asking how I am and asking me to return to blogging. I pulled up the blog, I will admit using password recovery and realized this blog still gets at least 50 hits day regardless of the long term lack of content. I am thrilled so many people have taken interest in my writings and ramblings about  our little life here in the vaterland.

I guess I should do a short re-into as so much has changed over the years. Lord I was in my early 20's and so niave when I started my journey here in Germany. Its almost 'peinlich' to look back at some of my early posts. To see how much I have evolved as an individual and as an expat over nearly a decade. You know its when you start refering to your past in decades you start to realize aging is catching up with you. Lol. Good lord, I dont even remember how to edit the formatting on a blog anymore, nor do I know if blogs are still of interest in a facebook and pinterest dominated world. But if there is an interest I have nothing against trying to find my groove once again in the blogging world.

I am 31 now, I was 23 when I first moved to Germany. I am now a mother to 2 young boys. Teenie will turn 5 in December, and his little brother piepmatz , just turned 3. I was pregnant when I last posted. My youngest son will be starting  kindergarten in a month. We have relocated to southern Baden a few years back. I am alive and well, having battled post partum depression as many may recall from previous posts and my activity of expat boards. You will be happy to know I am doing well and thriving and finally starting to rediscover myself, as an indivual, as an expat. I am striving to bloom where I have been planted, even if its takes a bit longer then others.

I have to give it some thought how best to proceed here, I always enjoyed the blogging format and being able to share aspects of my world with likeminded individuals, at the same time I need to find a balance away from oversharings and how best to protect my little ones in a world dominated by oversharing in the virtual world.

I just wanted to take a moment to say I am alive and well. Still in Germany, and pretty damn sure I will be here for the long haul.

Thank you to everyone who has written and commented to ask how I am and if I will ever return to blogging. I cannot guarantee I will become as involved as I once was with posts every few days, but I would certainly love to post again and see how things evolve.

Lots of love,

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

101 goals in 1001 days- update

Well I never really followed through with the whole program, and while I would like to construct a new set of goals I figured it was only fair to begin by reflecting on the former.

You can find my original post here

So here is it the good the bad and the ugly.... 101 goals in 1001 days in retrospect

1. Finish homemaking binder - abandoned. In simplifying my day and home I find no need to have a binder filled with papers, I have found alternate ways to organize my day.
2. Create a Recipe Binder - abandoned. I am more of a pinterest girl these days. Not keeping physical recipies around.
3. Create a Holiday Binder - should do it. Not a bad idea. I would like to continue working on family traditions and rituals.
4. Create an inspiration notebook - abandoned. Why did I want to do this again. Again unneeded clutter.
5. Teach myself baking and bake 10 things- Hmm well I def should keep working on this. I am sure I have since baked. Not sure if it was 10 times. But I would hardly consider myself taught, so perhaps an ongoing journey at best. 
6. Create a pantry/ stockpile . Carry over to do 
7. Decorate each room of the house Carry over to do 
8. Cook a traditional ddr feast - Hahaha wtf is a traditional DDR feast, I must have been grasping at straws here. Well I have learned quiet a few recipies so we will call this one a success. 
9. Learn to cook Indian food Fail Carry over 
10. Assemble an emergency kit for the house Fail carry over 

Out and about:
11. Have a picnic done
12. Visit 10 castles carry over
13. Visit 10 museums carry over
14. Visit a stage show carry over
15. Visit the German cinema carry over
16. Go on 10 dates with husband carry over
17. Go to the zoo done well it was a shitty small zoo but it counts
18. Visit 10 kindermarkets and 10 flohmarkets abandoned, I am on a journey to live with less last thing i need is enabling myself to buy more. Perhaps once in a whole in search of that perfect old bauernhof stück for the house, but not 20 times. 
19. Go to a concert done if a middle age festival counts, saw Faun
20. Go to a middle age festival done, and it was fun 
21. Join the library Done 

22. Cook a traditional thanksgiving dinner and invite guests carry over 
23. Homemake Christmas gifts doing this year so we will say done
24. Cook a traditional Christmas dinner carry over this year we will be gone would like to do next year
25. Send Christmas Cards hmmm yeah lets carry over 
26. Build a gingerbread house  Highlighted this one because we can knock this out this month we will say done. 

27. Visit Paris and the Louve Museum - carry over 
28. Fly home for a visit - Done Sept 2011
29. Visit Munish I assume munish should be munich carry over 
30. Visit Georgia (family friend) Done December 2010
31. Visit Minau carry over
32. Visit Dachau Carry over
33. Visit London Not sure this will happen in the next 3 years so I will say abandoned and add it to long term goals
34. Visit Ost or Nord see carry over 

35. Try mail art (10) abandoned not my things
36. Swap 10 postcards abandoned not my thing
37. Write one letter home per month, altering the recipients silly goal not achievable and I have regular contact via facebook
38. Try package swapping 10 times Achieved I do have done swaps via diaperswappers and in local groups
39. Reach 250 blog followers abandoned, I decided to write for fun vs attempting to make profit with it
40. Then create my own site on my own server with design again abandoned see above
41. Get my mac repaired well thats a sad unfortionate ending, I actually did get it fixed and then it crapped out less then a year later and was not reasonably repairable needed a whole new logic board. Sold it to a mac technition for 60 euro and was quiet pleased. The hubs got me a new laptop as a 5 year anniversary/xmas gift this year

For the future:
42. Create a Time capsule for luka carry over
43. Write a letter for myself to open in 10 years carry over 
44. Move into a new place done we actually moved to another part of the country
45. Establish an emergency savings fund in germany of 500 euro carry over
46. Establish an emergency savings fund in the US of 500 dollars carry over
47. Pay off 5 debts in the US I believe this one here is done yay
48. Pay off 4 debts in Germany done
49. Apply for an ausbildung currently home with the kids not applicable
50. Get my german drivers license done
51. Ship 10 more boxes from home oh sure this one is done
52. Put aside 20 euro for each task completed silly goal, as I have no income and we work on saving anyway
53. Open a retirement account done

54. Create photo albums for 2009 and 2010 carry over
55. Finish my pregnancy journal not applicable not my thing
56. Make a baby book for Luka carry over
57. Make a baby book for Toni carry over
58. Have professional photos taken I had pics of the oldest but still want family pics
59. Make a belly cast done
60. Make a list of 100 reasons why I love my husband abandoned, he knows
61. Pick 5 people who have greatly influenced my life and write them carry over

Learnings fun:
62. Finish my degree not applicabe right now, maybe someday. I did do a few more courses, but right now its not possible for me and I dont know what I want to do long term.
63. Reach level c1 German carry over
64. Take a class at the VHS not done, no time now I did to pregnancy yoga though at a yoga house, so I will consider that a sucess
65. Learn to drive stick shift well I tried, I even did a few hours driving courses, we opted to buy a automatic hybrid. I consider this attempt a sucess. 
66. Learn to swim carry over
67. Take a cooking course or class did not do and we oved from where I wanted to take it abandoned

68. Have a baby shower not common in Germany not applicable
69. Throw Luka a birthday party done
70. Throw Toni a birthday party not a priority right now
71. Throw myself a birthday party not a priority right now
72. Host a frauentag with my former class mates we moved away no applicable
73. Have an overnight/ weekend guest done
74. Throw a dinner party done
75. Have a movie marathon lame idea abandoned
76. Have a tea party ha germans have kaffee and kuchen all the time, done more then once

Baby Love:
77. Join a play group done created one
78. Take a class with Luka never been able to 
79. Teach Luka baby signing he learned a few

80. Read the bible in its entirety carry over
81. Baptize luka carry over
82. Find a church to join done
83. Complete 50 questions that could free your mind carry over
84. Keep a yearly journal with at least one entry per week carry over

85. Read 10 classic books
86. Read 10 banned books
87. Read 101 books
88. Watch 101 Films
89. Purge and refill my Ipod need to rebuild music collection first
90. Read all Dean Koontz books currently in circulation not interested anymore
91. Read the Anne of Green Gables Series redundant with above

Body works:
92. Get a Massage done
93. Drop back to my prebaby weight done
94. Try acupuncture done
95. Get extra dental insurance not needed 

Look what I made:
96. Teach myself to sew and buy a sewing machine make 10 things well bought a machine but so far only made baby legs carry over
97. Try knitting and crotchet make 1 of each bam on it crocheting all the time, knitting not my thing
98. Teach myself to paint (at least try) abandoned not my thing

Better start saving:
99. Buy a combi fridge or freezer done 
100. Buy a good camera done 
101. Buy a bigger bed done albiet a piece of shit but hey, someday we will upgrade 

So to recap....
Goals achieved: 36
Goals abandoned or postponed long term: 27
Goals carried over: 38

So thats a proper F or note 4 :P Better Luck next time.

Perhaps most ammusing we changed our sons name before he was born so the references written here while I was pregnant are inaccurate, seems so odd to read lol.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Meal plan Monday 12/8 - 12/14

A quick glimpse into our kitchen this week.Hope you enjoy. And please share links in the comments to your weekly meal plans.

Sunday: It was a Lazy day. Hubs and kids ate pizza. I ate melted cheese on bread. Yeah culinary high life.

Baked Fleisch kase
Tomato cobbler. I used this recipie from Penny over at Penniless parenting.
Green beans with butter
Carrot sliced baked in oil in brown sugar
Beef rice with bell pepper

Left overs
White cabbage salad
boiled potatoes with Quark
rest of applesauce

Left over cabbage Salad
Couscous with cucumber and carrots and rest of quark

Tuna helper
Green salad
Rest of the oranges

Cheesy pasta
rest of salad
sliced cucumber
rest of fresh fruit or canned pineapples

Spatzle with linsen
sliced carrots
any remaining left overs
canned peaches

Man that Tomato cobbler today was delish. I cannot wait for T to get home and try it, even the kids loved it. i will admit I was skeptical, but I am def adding this to my recipie list. A fantastic recipie when you have tomatoes to use up.


Freebies for moms in Germany updated 2013

This was by far the most popular blog posts on Ich liess mein Herz in Deutschland with thousands of hits, so I figured an update and expansion would be well recieved. So here you go freebies for expecting and new parents in Germany.  If you know of any other baby bonus or freebie programs please email me or leave a comment.

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Now before you get all grateful I have to admit this was put together by a friend of mine and is reposed with her permissions. So I will pass any gratitude her way. ( This has since been expanded and updated over the years)

Please note some places allow you to sign up while pregnant others must be done after your baby arrives :)

First up here are the baby clubs that offer a welcome packet full of freebies and coupons:

Real: A welcome box of goodies including a toy and socks as well as a coupon book as well as yearly birthday gifts

DM: A welcome packet that includes toy some sample sized toiletries and a book of coupons valued at over 200 euro. Cannot register until after the babies birth.

DM is now a days constantly revamping their welcome packages. It appers to vary per location but includes full size freebies for mom and baby as well as a coupon book.

Rossmann: A welcome packet that includes a toy, sample sized toiletries and a book of coupons valued at over 300 euro. In addition to age appropriate advice and tips, year 1 and 2 birthday gifts, regular coupon offers by post and a magazine subscription for parents.
They do allow registration while pregnant.

Check out my pregnancy welcome kit here.

Globus: Not sure of the contents never signed up for this one

Mueller: A 5 euro voucher  and a coupon book as well as some small trinkets

You can also sign up at many of the major baby companies in order to receive a variety of samples and coupons.

Pampers: A free personalized T shirt for baby, free diapers, and 50 euros on coupons, as well as coupons sent out on a regular basis and a subscription to pampers village magazine

Hipp: A welcome packet with free baby food and various samples, a 20 euro gift certificate to start a baby savings account, over 100 euro in coupons, a membership card that gives you discounts in many family activities, exclusive contests to enter, a 50 euro HP gift card, and a personalized name sticker for your car

I got a pregnancy kit from them as well, check it out here

Alete/Nestle: A welcome packet with a variety of samples as well as over 30 euro in coupons

Milupa: Food samples and coupons

Bebivita: Food samples and coupons

Also when you sign up with the hebamme for the geburtsvorbereitung course you are often given a gift set., Many hospitals offer a baby packet but some do not. Some have crazy cool ones others just give you some samples and call it a day.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

2014 in 2014

Well I did suceed in 2013 albiet not the best with tracking to the end so I am going to embark on this journey yet again with purging 2014 items in 2014. In doing so I have set a few rules and also modifications.

What will be different this year is the fact that I will be visiting home, and making choice about what is really worth it to bring back with me to Germany. I will be purging a lot, things that perhaps 6 years ago I was not ready to cut my ties with and I hope to come back with a lot less luggage lingering backhome.

So this year will be not only my home in Germany but also my monter purge in the US. Now in the event I get all kinds of crazy sucess stateside and hit my goal smack on the start (how cool would that be). I will continue tracking through the end of the year just to see how much I actually get rid of.

What I will not count is normal trash, recycling, papers. I wont be counting things that are waiting to go out that are already destened for that fate, but rather things I am conciously choosing to get rid of and live without.

So the journey starts Jan1.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

3 in 1 Taco salad

3 in 1 Taco salad
Ok, Ok, still working on the whole pictures with recipies thing. Maybe someday it will click.
I love streching one nights cooking into multiple meals and that is one Thing I do with Taco Salad.

Shopping List:
500 gramm minced meat
1 pack taco seasoning
1 onion
1 can kidney beans
1 can corn
1 head lettuce
1 small Container sour cream
1 jar salsa
1 Cup Brown Rice
1 Bag Tortilla Chips
1 Bag Shredded cheese

Day 1 Taco salad Dinner:
Brown the meat, add in sliced onion and taco seasoning cook well. Add corn and beans till warm. Melt in some cheese.

Cut up salad. Mix sour cream and salsa to preffered spiciness. Crush up half bag Tortilla Chips.

I Keep my lettuce seperate to Keep left overs fresh.

I layer warm mix, then lettuce then Chips and on top Dressing. Fed our Family (2 adults and toddler)

Day 2 Mexican Rice Lunch:
Cook 1 Cup Brown Rice

Add in yesterdays meat mix till heated.

Serve with remaining salad and Dressing.

Day 3 Nachos Lunch:
Heat up remaining Rice mix. Layer on remaining Tortilla Chips. Sprinke on cheese and remaining salsa.

Uses up most all ingredients so no waste. Leaving 3/4 bag Brown Rice for another meal and the rest of the bag of onions.


Monday, December 2, 2013

Hello, Hello, is there anybody out there......out there.... out there

Well howdy ho,
How the hell are ya? It has sure been a while hasn't it. Well I decided to give it ago again with blogging. As the littles grow (now 1 and 3) with the later starting kiga soon, I have a bit more time these days.

So I am back, and hopefully better then ever, I suppose only time will tell.

I have given up on trying to find my niche in the blogging world, or hoping to be the next big thing. But don't be sad that's a good thing. It means I am blogging for fun, and that is exactly what I want these days.

So I look forward to giving you all a glimpse into the daily life of an American living in Germany.



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