A Party For Two Very Loved Babies

I have to say that had we become pregnant in Germany, I would not have the pleasure of experiencing a real deal Baby Shower of my own. As most of you know they do not throw Baby Showers in Germany partially because it’s just not their tradition but the other idea is because they are superstitious about bringing gifts to a baby before he/she is born. Its considered bad luck!

A while ago I threw a party in Germany for a friend who was expecting. Giving her the whole experience of an American Baby Shower!  Go check it out if you missed it!

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So, I was just ecstatic that the people I love were willing to throw me my own special party for these two little nuggets. Toblerone and I traveled to upstate NY to my family’s home right before Thanksgiving. The drive was atrocious…9 hours in a car with thigh high compression socks is not particularly the most comfortable way to go! But we arrived and were just so excited to be back with family! People came from all over and even from out of state to visit us! My brother and his clan came from West Virginia and my Aunt and Uncle and cousin came from Pennsylvania! I mean….THATS what I call love!!

My mom’s house was decorated in my absolute favorite theme: nautical! We decided to have this as a Jack and Jill party as well so we could see all of our friends and family at one time. People brought diapers for a diaper raffle and gifts as well. These boys are SPOILED!

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It was just so amazing to be around family and to show them the belly we waited so long to have! Granted, I’ve now tripled in size since then!

We got so many amazing gifts and of course Toblerone was out of this world excited when he got his very own gift for the boys! Thank you to all our friends and family who came and gave us gifts for these boys. We are just so grateful! Having twins is certainly not cheap!!!

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Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxo

 

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Spice Takes On Chicago

I’ve never been much of a “city” girl but Chicago changed me for good! Luckily this great city is only a hop, skip, and 3.5 hours of driving away.

We stayed in a great hotel right on the river with incredible views and really central to all the fun stuff!

Chi 3Our first night there we went to the Christkindlmarkt to see how close to the Christmas markets back in Germany it was. I must say, it was fairly close…however WAY overpriced! They had all the basic German stuff…wurst, cuckoo clocks, ornaments, etc. Before we moved to Michigan we bought a cuckoo clock in the Black Forest (where they originate from) for more than half of the cost they they charge here. We saw a smaller version of ours for almost $500 MORE than what we paid! So crazy! Toblerone and I decided that we needed to sell something at these markets, we would make thousands just by overcharging unknowing Americans! Is that bad?? 🙂

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I got my beloved currywurst and Toblerone had some kind of sausage thing with mustard. Was pretty close to the real deal so we were impressed with that for sure!

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Just look at that happy German!! 🙂 Chi 8

The next day we walked all over Chicago! We went to the Big Bean or I guess its official name is Cloud Gate. (I literally just had to look that up!) This was a great surprise to me! I LOVED seeing this in person!

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We also walked to the planetarium to get the best views of the city.

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Later on we went shopping a little bit at Macy’s which was just a mad house but is just a part of Xmas! I’m not sure if any of you are familiar with the movie Serendipity, but Toblerone and I LOVE this movie…and wouldn’t you know it…a black glove was on the ground in front of us 🙂 For those that know the movie, know the significance oof the black glove throughout the movie. Heres the proof:

Chi 4In the evening, I was able to meet up with my roommate from 8+ years ago! It was so good to catch up as if a day never went by. And of course, we had one too many old fashions…yikes…never again. But in this case, the hangover was WELL worth it!

Chi 2Our last day there we stopped at the original UNO’s Pizzeria where we waited over 45 minutes for our personal deep dish pizza. It was SO different from the franchise and was the best pizza I’ve ever had!

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Home we went, savoring the memory from the weekend and looking forward to going back again to experience all that she has to offer! Thank you, Chicago, for turning this “country gal” into a “city-loving girl.”

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Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxoxoxo

Third Annual Hiking Trip In the Alps

My annual meeting with the Alps happened again. This time we traveled a couple hours away to the Lünersee in Austria. This was actually a tough climb and a lot of steep parts but hey…when in Rome!!

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With our group of 25 people we climbed up the first portion to a lodge (6,495 feet above sea level) for lunch and a few drinks. Note to self…don’t drink beer before you hike another 3 hours! Muscle will not function properly! Lucky for us there was a band there playing all the special German songs in their drindls and lederhosen which our group naturally helped out here and there! 🙂

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After lunch we headed out to our overnight lodge which was a good 3 hour hike. Straight up. It was pretty rough and quite a few people struggled but the thought that carries you through is the beer you get to have once you get there!

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7,824 feet above sea level we arrive at our lodge for the night. Sleeping is literally bunk beds but not the kind you’re thinking of. We are sleeping 5 across…one right after the other. In my room alone we fit about 18 or so. Lucky me…this meant no sleep with all the younger, crazy guys!

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In the evening we were served a 3 course meal (not bad for so far up the mountain. Remember…everything needs to be brought up there!). First course was a flädlesuppe, also known as pancake soup. Then on to Deer meat goulash. I opted for noodles of some sort. And dessert was icecream with pineapples. Not a bad set up! After dinner the music started going, people were singing loud, playing cards, and drinking away. A standard night up in a lodge over 7,000 feet high in the middle of the Alps. Right?

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The next morning…after ZERO sleep, we headed even farther up the mountains behind us and at this point, I started panicking I’m not sure what it is in my old age but as I get older the more afraid of heights I am. I’m not necessarily afraid of heights, let me rephrase. More like my body just starts to turn to jello and I feel wobbly. Like I will lose my balance at any moment and plummet to my death. But nonetheless, I survived…obviously!

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Hiking down is of course a lot less horrible and less work but when you haven’t had a lot of sleep the only thing you think is, GET ME OFF THIS DAMN MOUNTAIN! Or at least…those were my sentiments.

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A killer view like this is worth it though. How often do you see a massive lake high up in the middle of the Alps. It’s one of those gifts that the world gives us. And for a very brief moment nothing else seems to matter. The world has a funny way of putting things into perspective for us.

Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxo

We Found Love In A Dunkin Donut

Oh people…where to begin! So last week I went to the city of Stuttgart to meet up with a gal pal (another American girl who fell in love with a German!) for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration at an Irish pub.

We met up in the Hauptbahnhopf (The main train station) because of one VERY important reason. A new Dunkin Donuts had just opened up. As we approached the newly opened cafe the smell of coffee and bad perfume was overwhelming. Thats what happens when you’re at a subway. Just all sorts of funky going on!

Surprisingly, Dunkin Donuts was hard to miss. There was a massive line of people just waiting to get their hands on the American staple. There were a few passer-bys that murmurred how gross it was. Those people CLEARLY have never had such awesomeness.

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They handled things a bit different at this particular DD. I think it was mostly because of the volume of people but the focus was primarily on the donuts. They were in a large case presented to the crowd. People would walk in front of the case and point to the donuts they wanted and the hard-working girls would fill up the boxes and bags. These donuts were crazy bright colors and I had to laugh. Germans often tell me that the bright colorful frosting is just SOOOO American. And it was actually a turn off for me but that may have something to do with me living here for three years now. You get used to seeing dull colors.

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Of course when it was our turn, Toblerone just HAD to have a boston cream donut. And of course…those were being delivered in the next 20 mins so I had to wait. And wait….and wait. To give you an idea of all the different flavors they had here’s a snapshot of their menu. Click here to see their website of what other things they offer. Not to mention the crazy bagels they offer. Like cream cheese and jelly or PB and jelly…hmm…interesting! Very American! I can’t imagine those being so popular!

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We did get iced coffees which was devine but I had to laugh. Everytime anyone ordered that they would go to the back room to get the ice. Germans do not put ice in their drinks, let alone their coffee! So this was funny for me to see them putting in such effort!

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We got a box of donuts: Nutella filled, strawberry sprinkles, two boston cream, one raspberry filled with vanilla frosting, and a maple frosting caramel filled one. Happy as clams we sat down to feasts on our breakfast of Champions and all the sudden old hip hop music was BLASTING through the speakers. I literally had to talk louder and listen harder. Dunkin Donuts was turned into a club at 11am! What the heck! But it was hilarious and made the experience that much more enjoyable.

Even though we travelled an hour by car, and a train ride later, it was the greatest Saturday I’ve had in a while. It felt like home…and the best part…it tasted just like home. Normally in the US I wouldn’t care much for this type of thing but when you’re away for so long, its these little things that give you the sense that you aren’t so far away from home. Thank you Dunkin Donuts.

Not to mention we finished the night off with some good old fashioned St. Patrick’s Day fun!
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Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxo

Happy Birthday, Pauli!

There is just something about Germans and their “fests” that they take very seriously. And when they party…they party well! Of course most of you know that from my Oktoberfest survival. I mean…I’m almost 30 (eek!) and I can barely hang with the rest of them because now I think about the pain I will feel the next day. However, this particular party I let loose and had a great time…and paid for it the next day.

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It was the 60th Birthday Party of my father-in-law, Paul. Before I go any further, let me remind you quickly how birthdays work here in Germany. When it’s your birthday you are the one responsible to provide cake or breakfast to your colleagues. As well as host your own “kaffee und kuchen” at your home for your family and friends. Personally, I think thats CRAP. With a capital C-R-A-P.

Us American folks know how to get down on our birthdays! We order people around and expect that the world showers us with gifts and pays for all our drinks when we drink away our past years. Afterall, the best gift is that we were born into this world..so people should clearly thank the heavens for this amazing gift. I still can’t believe that my first birthday here in Germany I actually baked myself a cake and invited people over, German style. NEVER. AGAIN. Just….NO.

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In Germany when someone turns 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, or 100…these are big years to celebrate. It was no different for my FIL (father-in-law). He planned a great birthday party in the party hall in his town. There was a lot of planning involved. From the invites, catering menu, decorations, table organization, and the events, he had planned it all perfectly. With a little help of course!

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His party was basically a concert. He’s big into music and belongs to three different bands. All three of them played a few songs each. All three bands were different from each other so it was a nice change up between each of them.

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Inbetween songs was of course dinner but also gifts were presented. Typically, at these parties a group of people say a funny poem, sing a song, or talk about the Birthday boy. At the end he is given a present that usually ties the whole skit together. Makes it a bit more fun!

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Approximately 130 people helped celebrate the 60th birthday of my beloved FIL. It was a great turnout and I think a really special time for him. Something he really deserved.

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I stayed and closed up shop with the last of the folks around 5am. I then woke up around 8:30am and cleaned up the mess that was leftover from the night before. And this of course…is the aftermath of no sleep. This 29 year old can NOT hang anymore. 🙂
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Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxo

Top Five Best German Commercials

I don’t watch too much TV in general, especially shows that in my second language but I from time to time I’ll catch a few here and there. The shows are somewhat similar. A lot of cooking themed shows and the usual stuff from the US with voice-overs. The commercials, however, always seem to shock me which isn’t too easy.

I thought it would be fun to share with you a few recently that I have seen. It’s possible you have them in your country as well. I’ve seen a few of these with voice overs in different languages so who knows! Either way, check them out and see what you think!

Sixx auf die 6 – A Dude dressed up as a chicken named Chick Norris and speaking terrible German?? Whats not to love?!

eBay – A Dog and a hamster…such unpredictable friendship!

Hornbach – A Commerical for a store like Lowes or Home Depot. This pulled at my heart strings. You don’t need to understand the language to feel the sadness.

Redcoon – I won’t say much about this other than “Billig” in German means “Cheap” in English. Oh and guys….you’re welcome.

Lions Cereal – It just wasn’t what I thought it would be at first!

These are my top 5! Do you have any others that you have seen and feel deserve to be in the ranking? If so, please share in the comments below!

And just one for fun…. A Turkish, Russian, and an Arab man all order at a beer garden….then a man from East Germany orders…

….The waitress tells him to speak German and then she will help him! lol…silly stuff!

Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxo

3rd Annual Halloween Party

Its that time of year again folks! Feels like just yesterday!! Another year to show the Germs just what Halloween is about. Candy, Drinking, and Costumes! If you recall, last year our Halloween Party was actually our surprise wedding reception! Toblerone and I got married on October 26th and that evening, we had our Halloween Party. Just so happens that our Halloween Party would once again be on October 26th so we got to celebrate our Anniversary with everyone!!

This year I didn’t go all out as much as I did the years before as far as food and what not. I did my usual vegetable skeleton and a few snack items. Nothing too crazy. I didn’t want to spend the whole day cooking. I actually wanted to enjoy my own party!! Even though I turned it down a notch, it was still really stressful and I’m thinking this will actually be our last year of this stuff. The house was a disaster the day after and truthfully, friends, I’m too damn old!! Toblerone and I were David and Victoria Beckham this year. (sorry for the crappy quality! It’s the only pic we have and from an iPhone!)
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The greatest part of this was an American friend of mine living in Stuttgart came for the party and we had a BLAST! This year we did a little beer pong and flip cup! That was FANTASTIC! I always get way excited about competitive drinking sports. Maybe a little too excited for my age! Anyways, here is a look into the evening! I just absolutely adore all the costumes the Germs come up with! So creative and cute! And they get into it!! No half-assing from them!!

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And I want to thank my sweet husband for just being the greatest man in my life and I’m glad he picked me! 🙂
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Wishing you all a very happy Halloween!! Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxo