Saturday, August 29, 2009

New hair cut



Ok I added some pics with better examples of colorPlease ignore the husband he was being an attention whore in my pictures lol. YOu can see here that the hair is mostly a light brown, but at the very front is a tad of black and faded red. (the red actually blends pretty well. The black used to be much more prominent as originally covered the front 1/4 of the hair. 
Please disregard the doof in the background. My god he looks horrible. I told him to quick jumping in my pic or I will photoshop out the corner and make it his facebook profile pic. 
Can you find my husband in this photo?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Guilty pleasures

Everyone's got one. So I thought it would be fun to have a late night confession session. Dear lord I am rhyming I must be sleep deprived. 

So heres mine:
1. I still love to color in coloring books, but only with crayola. I hate the cheapo crayons that are all waxy and crumble when you color. 
2. I love watching "what's in my purse" videos on you tube
3. I love anything with disney princesses
4. I enjoy reading children's or youth books, especially the ones from the library with the plastic book covers
5. I love to put mustard on everything from chips to baked potatoes :)

So what is your guilty pleasure? Leave me a comment

Sunday, August 23, 2009

365 Days




Hard to believe its been a year already. Heres to many more! :)

Underneath it all
There's times where I want something more 
Someone more like me 
There's times when this dress rehearsal 
Seems incomplete 
But, you see the colors in me like no one else 
And behind your dark glasses you're... 
You're something else 

Chorus: 
You're really lovely 
Underneath it all 
You want to love me 
Underneath it all 
I'm really lucky 
Underneath it all 
You're really lovely 

You know some real bad tricks 
And you need some discipline 
But, lately you've been trying real hard 
And giving me your best 
And, you give me the most gorgeous sleep 
That I've ever had 
And when it's really bad 
I guess it's not that bad 

So many moons that we have seen 
Stumbling back next to me 
I've seen right through and underneath 
And you make me better 
I've seen right through and underneath 
And you make me better 
Better... better... 
 
You are my real Prince Charmin' 
Like the heat from the fire 
You were always burnin' 
And each time you're around 
My body keeps stalin' 
For your touch 
Your kisses and your sweet romancin' 
There's an underside to you 
That so many adore 
Aside from your temper 
Everything else secure 
You're good for me, baby 
Oh that, I'm sure 
Over and over again 
I want more 

You've used up all your coupons 
And all you've got left is me 
And somehow I'm full of forgiveness 
I guess it's meant to be  

You're really lovely 
Underneath it all 
You want to love me 
Underneath it all 
I'm really lovely 
Underneath it all 
And you're really lovely 

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Are you an American expat in Deutschland?

Check out my group on facebook.


A medium for meeting fellow expats, event planning, and general discussion pertaining to life in Germany. 

Starting small, but the more the merrier. Invite your friends :)


Thursday, August 20, 2009

German update

I passed the A1 German exam with 89%.

I got 15/15 reading
14/15 listening
14/15 speaking
and I think 11/15 writing lol

need to buff up those writing skills

now on to, A2

One Year


I am actually two days late on posting this lol...oopsie.

As of August 18th, I have officially been in Germany one year. 


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Google

I was checking out my blog hits counter today and am truly amazing by the variety of google search terms that bring me up :)

Just in terms of my last 20 visitors I was found via google using these search phrases:
Deutschland friend
self assemble sofa beds
wedding deautschland
map & street view deautschland
angaria-vicandi (?????)
heidepark deautschland
eis ital
heidipark deautschland
chat.de ich deutschland
google street view deutschland

I was found through in a variety of languages including Korea, Hungary, Senegal and China versions of google. 

I have the following rankings:
Deautschland friend #2
self assemble sofa beds #4
wedding deautschland #10
eis ital #5
heidipark deatchland #1

So I guess google is starting to notice me lol.

I love having visitors from all over the world. But please do leave me comments. Even if you came here and it is totally not what you are looking for, let me know how you found me:)





Sunday, August 16, 2009

Teach yourself German...books and periodicals

I have had a lot of people asking me for suggestions on books that are useful when teaching oneself German. So I thought I would go ahead and post it on here. I will not recommend anything that I myself have not used. I intend to write a few posts on this topic regarding different ways of learning German yourself, so do check back if you find it interesting. I will begin by talking about written materials..ie books and periodicals.

1. Textbooks. 
One of the fundamental areas of learning when teaching oneself a foreign language is grammar. This is very hard to pick up from a workbook. So I suggest picking up a used textbook. I personally was not picky, I just played around on amazon and stumbled across one for 1 cent. Yep 1 cent, plus a few bucks shipping. Sure it is a bit outdated it talks in terms of old German currency lol, but the concepts are the same, and I have found it very useful. You can also pick up the textbooks that are used in the German integration courses for pretty cheap.

I use:
Kontakte- A communicative Approach second edition by Terrel, Tschirner, Nikolai and Genzmer ISBN:0-07-063787-3

Integration course books: (you can buy individual workbook and textbook, or a combo book )
Level a1: 
Themen 1 aktuell Kursbook (textbook) ISBN: 978-3-19-001690-7 (I paid about 14 new)
Themen 1 aktuell arbeitsbuch (workbook) ISBN: 978-3-19-011690-4 (I paid about 11 new)
Themen 1 aktuell Glossar (Glossary) ISBN: 978-3-19-081690-3 (I paid about 6)

Level a2: (Same prices as a1 books)
Themen 2 aktuell Kursbook (Textbook) ISBN: 978-3-19-001691-4
Themen 2 aktuell arbeitsbuch (workbook) ISBN: 3-19-011691-1
Themen 2 aktuell Glossar (Glossary) ISBN: 978-3-19-251691-7

2. Workbooks
I think workbooks are very helpful in learning a foreign language. It actually gives you hands on use of the grammatical concepts you have read about. I think they are the key to self study. 

I use:
German in 10 minutes a day ISBN: 978-0-944502-20-4 (I bought mine new for 20, but see them used all the time on amazon)
Berlitz basic German Workbook ISBN: 981-246697-5 (found new on amazon from a private seller for 6 bucks)

Also if you are in Germany there is a steady supply of workbooks for German kids. I always keep my eye out at Aldi and Lidl. They have some great workbooks. They are based one grade level, but just flip through till you find one closest to your level of German. I for instance stick around grade 4-6. Once you get higher they start to loose me :)

3. Dictionaries
It does not matter how good your grammar is without a word base to use it with. I use both a photo and traditional dictionary. It is definitely worth it to splurge a bit and buy yourself a good dictionary. Make sure it also has a section with German- English. Mine also has a great grammar section in the back

I use:
German- English Visual Dictionary ISBN: 978-0-7566-1295-5
Collins German Concise Dictionary ISBN: 978-0-06-114183-6

4. Grammar related books
You can find tons of books related to German grammar. These break it down a bit more then textbooks.

I use:
English Grammar for Students of German by Zarach and Melin ISBN: 0-934034-23-0
Barrons 501 German verbs (sorry no ISBN)

The first is great for comparing English and German grammar, the second breaks down the most commonly used verbs into every verb conjugation. 

As your German improves it is great to start reading in German. Look for newspapers, magazines, and kids books.

I pick up the cheap women's magazines and read them. 

I also love kids books like Das Grosse Buch Der 1001 Fragen & Antworten

I have also heard there are some magazines written in German for people who are studying the language. Deutche Perfekt id one I believe, but I haven't found it in any stores. If anyone knows who carries it please do let me know. 

I hope this helps. Feel free to contact me with any questions. And if you know a good resource for learning German leave me a comment.

Next time I will write about learning German online :)


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Save a tree, swap a book

I thought it would be fun to recommend a site once a week. I will do this in addition to my If I had the chance posts. Later I will expand on this idea. If you would like to suggest a site leave me a comment. 

My starting theme is websites pertaining to life in Germany. Now I may expand out into other things. I will just play around with the idea :) Feel free to leave me feedback and ideas. 

So this weeks site:

A book lovers paradise. Post your used English language books and swap them for point that can be used to order any book on the site. So rather then direct swaps it is with accumulated points, but this allows for greater flexibility in choosing books that interest you. 

Facts:
* Free to sign up and use the site
* Shipping a book "book rate" in Germany costs 85 cents. That is the only cost you pay. When you order a book, the poster pays shipping. 
* All English language books
* A variety of subjects
* Great selection
* also has a forum, messaging system, friends list, you can watch books, add to a list of books you want to read and more
* You can swap books you received through the system thus getting multiple reads out of one initial purchase. 
* Nationwide

Down side:
* You cannot buy points, you only accumulate them through trading. So if you have special interest books that no one wants, you may have to wait a while. Improve your chances by posting a variety of book titles, rather then one at a time. 

My suggestion:
I alternate trading and buying books on amazon. I post all books on the site after I read them, and I rarely end up at a point stand still. :)

Keep an eye out for the 1 cent paperbacks on amazon, they even have them in Germany. 

Not in Germany? Look for similar programs in your area, they exist all around the world. 

Before and After- weight loss




Bad Wimpfen Talmarkt

The beer was actually a lot bigger then it looks. 
He's a dork he just wanted to pose with my beer. 
Yes the beer was bigger then my head :)
I was to scared to ride it. 
Yes, I did eat that all by myself. And it was delish!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

If I had the cash....

So I was playing online looking around on websites. And I thought it would be fun to list ten things I would splurge on, if I had the extra cash. This is by no means in any order of importance, nor necessarily the first thing I would buy if given the opportunity.


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Say no to self assembly furniture

As some of you know we didn't have a bed, but rather a sofa bed. Not like you think in the states. Rather the German kind. I tried to find a picture but to no avail so try to visual this with me. Two twin mattresses. One is set one hinges attached to a wooden base like a box it swings up and down. Now the other lays flat and has 2 legs it attaches to the base on a slider. So as a couch the back flips up and the other slides, as a bed the back flips down the other slides out. Any who, it was not in any way shape or form comfortable. It had no box spring so the bed caved into the lower base, and had a huge crack or split down the middle of the bed. So I was uber stoacked when my family gave us money for a bed as an anniversary gift. We found one at aldi. 

We found a real bed with one mattress. Which is hard to come by here. Germans like to take two twin mattresses and put them side by side. Brady bunch style only closer. No clue why, it is a German thing. After living here a while you realize there is no sense trying to decipher such behaviors. 

Normal bed, but self assembly required. Well I am a wimp and my husband a computer geek. Construction is by no means our forte. So what according to the instructions was a 30 minutes project turned out to be a half day affair. We had previously assembled the wooden slats (Germans don't do box springs... I know I know.. I really don't know so don't ask me.) Box springs make sense right, wooden slates break, but no no box springs here.

So we start building here is the chain of events (Just the ones that screamed red flag, but we neglected to comprehend)
1. Start with the head board - the metal pieces are too short and don't fit, one screw is defective ( no really it had no screw top lol)
2. The middle support bars- one side broken can screw in. Then a screw snaps in half, and becomes lodged.
3. The side bars fit together, but the screw holes don't line up
4. Yeah we still continued connect he last side and it doesn't properly line up

Now normal people would have stopped at phase one and realized they got a crappy defective peice of ****. But no it took up trying to assemble it two hours to figure it out. So we took it all apart, and ventured back to Aldi (on a Saturday, 1 hour before closing) to return it. 

So we get inside and wait in line with 40 other Germans who buy cart full of groceries every Saturday because heaven forbid the store is not open the next day and one would die without every flavor of yogurt. (another German quirk) So we get to the registrar and these women are like crack addicts they go so fast.

Try to envision all simultaneously
1. I am handed two forms to fill out in German. 
2. She starts trying to run off with the cart which has my purse.
3. She yelling at my husband about why we didn't tie the box together.
4. I am yelling asking what the paper say
5. Husbands answering me and chasing cart
6. She tosses us money and throws away our original receipt then proceeds to the next person

I couldn't even ask for my receipt back for the other parts of the bed. We had to track down another person who claims we wont need it, which I find hard to believe. The warrenty says original receipt required. 

So they did not just let us trade it in, we had to get cash, go outside, and then back in. And buy a new bed. 

We got home, and assembled the next bed. Luckily it went pretty fast since it was the second time around. After about an hour we managed to get the bed together. Now that did include occasional rants in German by my counter part and threats to kick the bed or throw it out the window. But in the end it came together. And thank God, it had no defects.

So 5 hours later we have the bed set up.

I love the bed, but so not worth it. I am all about the delivery and installation. Worth every penny. 

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