Let The Renovations Begin!

Maybe it has something to do with the winter time and the fact that I want to be inside…ALL.DAY.LONG. The bug to change the world has hit me…or actually maybe starting a bit smaller is key and that has led me to begin renovations on my home!

As you know I completed the guest rooms minus a few decorating items but at least those two rooms are done and the doors stay closed until people come to visit (hint, hint!) On to the bigger projects where I actually have to focus and take my time because these are the rooms that people actually see a lot more.

First up is the living room!! Pinterest inspiration struck again and I decided with this house I really need to stay in-tune with myself and my style. I am a “coastal” girl and I should just allow that to happen! Light blues, creams, and seashells galore! Gotta bring a little bit of the ocean into my mid-west life here. Thankfully, the German husband of mine is just cool with whatever I do! 🙂

So I saw this picture on Pinterest which you can find it’s original place on the House Of Turquoise Blog here. 1067883302_oXKVM-OThis is the idea! And although I can’t exactly do it JUST like that it was a great start for inspiration!

Previous walls in the living room were in my opinion dark blue. Nothing wrong with dark colors, it just started to depress me. There is only one large window and two smaller ones in this room. Not a whole lot of natural light pouring through so it was important to me that we lighten it up…A LOT!

I fought with the idea of paint colors and finally landed on THE color. Glass Slipper by Benjamin Moore. I spent hours searching for the right color but every one of them was either too “baby blue” or “too dark.” This color by Benjamin Moore has a hint of green in it so its not going to give you that newborn baby room look.

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So all in all it took me to do the entire room in about a week! I know, that seems insane but first, I was all by my little self doing this. I had to take SO many breaks because I also have dog duty and other house duties to attend to. On top of that, I’m scared of heights so being on a ladder was just REALLY challenging for me!

End result – Exhibit A:

Collage 1Collage 2Harley loves his new space 🙂 He’s going to be 5 tomorrow! Everyone say Happy Birthday to this sweet, cupcake!

End Result – Exhibit B

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So as you can see this simple change turned the room into something different. I actually like to sit in there all day now. No…wait, I actually don’t sit around all day. I’m off doing very productive things because that is what housewives do! 🙂

I painted the panel above the fireplace white because I’m having a hard enough time figuring out what to put there. A picture? A clock? An abstract piece of art? A canvas print? It’s not easy! But at least it doesn’t look like its a focal point anymore. So maybe whatever goes there won’t be THAT important.

Also, I painted ALL of the molding…ALL of it.  I couldn’t bare the thought of trying to scrub out all the crayon marks, old pizza, and several other questionable substances I found in my journey.  Another reason why I shouldn’t have children…my OCD does not allow for ANY messes! But doing that simple little thing made this room look like it was just built. Almost. It gave it all a bit of much needed makeover and I’m feeling complete!

Next up: DECORATING!! Will be added a bit of greenery, end tables, lamps, curtains and something for those shelves and above the mantel. Its all getting there! Slowly but surely!

Then on to: DINING ROOM/KITCHEN! Will be adding backsplash, brightening it up as well, and re-staining the cabinets! Wish me luck!

Anyone have any ideas for the space above the mantel? Would love to hear what you got!!!

Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxoxo

Settling Back In To America

It’s been a minute since I actually found some time to sit down and write. Toblerone and I have been slowly re-acclimating to all things American and the process has been fun so far!

We no longer are in the company apartment (THANK THE LAWD!), purchased a new home, and moved in! Everything happened so fast – literally 2 weeks time. Check out our new digs:

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The neighborhood we are in looks like Wisteria Lane (for you Desperate Housewives fans).  The people wave and are friendly and our direct neighbors are just incredible. It makes the world of difference to just feel like we would have someone to help us if something was wrong. In Germany, the neighbors wouldn’t even return a “Good Morning” until after 3 years! It was crazy.

I’ve already stored our Thanksgiving turkey in someone’s freezer while we waited for our fridge to arrive, and another one brought over her carbon monoxide detector after she learned we were having potential issues with our fireplace. We also got a quick visit and a bottle of wine on Thanksgiving from our other neighbors. I mean, where am I? Oh yeah…America! 🙂 But seriously, Michiganians (say that ten times fast!) are reallllllllllly nice people. We got so lucky!

I worked frantically to get two of the guest bedrooms finished for our very special guests (THE PARENTS!) I learned I forgot how to paint on walls here in the US so that took me a little bit longer than I expected! But they are mostly done. Need a few more things like end tables for one room and more pictures for both, etc. But we are ready for unexpected and expected guests alike!

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Thanksgiving was great! My parents and Toblerone’s mom came to visit us and we had a small yet very festive Turkey Day! It was so fun to host my first Thanksgiving here in the states in our new home. I wish the entire family could have been with us but some year we will host everyone. This was definitely a scale down from doing it in Germany for 15+ people!

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We went to a Christmas tree farm with my parents in search of the perfect tree. As you know, previously, my experience with Christmas trees wasn’t exactly easy for me to adjust to! At the farm we went to we didn’t bring any cameras, just our memories and it was the greatest memory I’ve had in a long time!

We put the tree together and it was really wonderful to have our parents here to be apart of the first Xmas in Michigan.

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Harley is adjusting and after going through a little bit of Reactivity (Fear Aggression) from being in a completely new place, he is finally starting to be more like himself.  We are all adjusting just fine and although we miss parts of Germany, I think we are happy where we are in this moment. We are where we are supposed to be. Which reminds me of my favorite quote from Max Ehrmann’s “Desiderata”

You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

The universe is unfolding as it should…profound if you can just believe it and let it.

Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxoxoxo

 

 

 

Counting Down The Days

We can almost count on two hands the days we have left here in Germany. It’s been slightly hectic but not too much that it feels as if everything is spiraling out of control. I’ve been packing to keep me busy since I left my job at the end of July. The wedding came and went and now here we are. Next chapter! Just like that!

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I’ve been actively searching for homes and there is a massive amount to choose from! Our Realtor sent me over almost 90 properties to start sorting through a while back and we’ve finally figured out what we are looking for. Location is key for work and also easy to get to stores, city, etc. And my number one main “must-have” is a fence for our dearest Harley Noodle Jones Butt Butt. I just want to be able to let him outside so he can run free around his “own space.”  Waterfront is also ideal but not a necessary factor at the moment since there are so many lakes around us!

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Today Harley and I ventured out to our favorite spot, “The Butterfly Field” and through the woods…which is also a mansion for ticks and other such things! He had a little bit of a photo shoot and loved all the snacks he was getting! Living it up in the place we called home the last three and a half years.

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There are many new houses being built directly behind us blocking our entire bedroom and bathroom windows. In a year from now, our house won’t be the home we once had. This town won’t be what it once was. Things are changing, people are coming and going and that’s just how life is!

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Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxo

 

Take Me Home, Country Roads

It’s almost time…that time to make the HUGE trip back to the states! So much has been happening and to be honest the blog has suffered. It’s been sitting on the back burner for quite some time now. I’ve completely been enveloped in stress. I’m planning the wedding (which is exactly 27 days away now…OMG!), still working full time, trying to organize what gets packed or trashed in the house…the list goes on! But I won’t bore you with the details!

Slowly I am really starting to get excited about whats to come! As soon as the wedding is done, we will fly back to Deutschland for 3-4 weeks to pack up our house and then ship out at the end of September! There is no time left to do anything! But Toblerone and I share constantly what we are looking forward to. Granted, my wants are very different from his. He wants the total American dream. The house on the water, a boat, fishing license (thats hard to get here in Germany), a big Mercedes, etc.

My wants are something a bit more sentimental. The things I lacked here are the things I am in dire need of. I never realized I wanted these things so badly in my life until I didn’t have them. Thats always how that goes though…isn’t it?

Here is my list of MUST-HAVES as soon as I put my feet on American soil!

1. Library card – A library with ENGLISH books in them. omg…and the smell of libraries. Give me it all! They have libraries here in Germany but I didn’t have any close by that actually looked like a library and/or had English books in them.

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2. Flat walls to paint – I’ve talked about this a little bit but this “stucco” idea that they have for the walls (inside and out) is ANNOYING to say the least. It takes AGES to paint walls and I am just beyond excited to paint our new house without having to go over the same spot 800 times. You don’t know how I’ve suffered…..

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3. Compassionate doctors – I won’t get into this too much but when my GYN tells me he doesn’t understand why we aren’t pregnant because he never had a problem. How he would just look at his wife and she was pregnant. Yeah…this is just a small taste of what doctors are like here. FULL of compassion and sympathy…am I right?!??!?!

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4. Craft stores – Oh dear heaven! I don’t care how many people boycott Hobby Lobby. I will buy out that store!! I miss those stores terribly. The VERY TINY “hobby” stores here are literally the size of my kitchen and have mostly felt. Germans really love getting down and crafty with felt. Which I personally feel should only be used in Kindergarten. But I digress…. Pinterest has turned me into a pretty craft person and thats all I want to do now..make my own stuff!

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5. To watch Ellen DeGeneres –  When I was really homesick I would watch small snippets of the Ellen show. For some reason I could just get lost in this and not feel sadness anymore. It’s weird, I get that. But you wouldn’t understand unless you were in my shoes! BRING ON THE ELLEN!!!!

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6. Plethora of food options and fad diets to try – Stores here are very standard. The foods in every grocery store are mostly the same. Same brands, etc. I used to think the Germans lived in a sort of Utopia. Everything the same. When I go home we have Wegmans (if you don’t know what that is, your life is not complete until you step inside one of those!) and there is also Whole Foods and a bunch of other ones too but each one is different to me. Each one offers something another one doesn’t. I can’t wait to just spend a day walking around and getting familiar with cereals again. Lucky Charms…oh how I’ve missed you!!  Plus all these new fad diets people get into. That’s always fun to try out and then quit after a couple days. Thats my style 🙂

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What do you think? Is my list totally awkward and weird? I hope it is! Because these are the things I just NEED in my life.

America here I come!!!!!!! AND THE HOME OF THE BRAAAAAAAVVVVVVE!!!!

Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxoxoxo

 

There She Goes…

Underwear. Socks. Bikinis. Jeans. Tank tops. Jewelry. Shoes. I’m missing something….ah yes! My sundresses!

For the most part I’m packed and surprisingly I have a LOT of room left in my suitcase….more room to bring things home! I can’t even begin to describe my excitement at the fact that I am going home tomorrow. And then of course there is the ultimate sadness that its only for 2 weeks and I have to return to Germany where I’m homesick and missing my American life. You would think that after over 2 years I would just love it here but it’s honestly and truly a daily effort to get me out of bed and TRY to think positive thoughts. Nothing is or ever will be as good as home.

More than anything…I can’t stop getting excited for PLANE FOOD!!!! Nothing better than watching a movie and having a cute little meal to chow on! I think it takes my mind off of the time for a bit so it helps with the long flight. Anyone else get excited about that?? Or is it just me?!
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On the plan for the trip is of course LOTS of wedding planning. Our wedding is over a year a way but I won’t be home to really get things together so I have to do as much as possible. I will DEFINITELY be trying on some wedding dresses which I’m out of my skin about! I can’t wait to do that!! I think that’s the greatest part!

Then Toblerone and I will be going to, as usual, Cape Cod for a few days. Beginning that trip with a Rolling Stones concert and ending it with a Dave Matthews Band concert. Heaven.On.Earth.

My brother, sister-in-law, and favorite (and only!) nephew will be driving up from Maryland to see us which is incredible since we wont have time to make it down their way. And my baby sister is home from college so all the chicks will be in their nest at home with mom. This is going to be REALLY special and I really hope to squeeze in some time with everyone! Lots to do and jet lag WILL NOT get the best of me!

Since this is possibly our only trip to the states this year (there goes my sanity!), I will need to collect items for our fourth of July party and yet another German Thanksgiving!

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Off to finish it all up, get my hair did, and snuggle up this sweet little Harley Jones Noddle ButtButt before he goes on vacation at his Omi and Opi’s house. I’ll have LOTS to show you and blog about…maybe even a sneak peak of wedding dress try ons! 🙂

There She Goes……..
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Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxoxo

Grass Isn’t Always Greener

Not too long ago I was in the midst of a heated family conversation. The conversation was between the Aunts/Uncles/Parents and the Children/Cousins/Nephews/Nieces. This wasn’t your average talk about picking up their room, getting a better job, or putting their life in order. It was about building on the land their parents had bought for them.

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I don’t know how this is in other parts of Germany but in the South it’s pretty commonly known that the Southern Germs a.k.a. The Swabisch are penny pinchers. Not always a negative thing either! Many live with their parents until an older age (25-35) or until they get married which allows most of them to have more money saved than I’ve had my whole life. Sometimes their parents buy them a piece of property for a hefty amount and wait until the child builds their forever home on it.

Note: Unlike Americans, the Germans stay put. Traditionally, they live in the same town for their entire lives. And, since they live at home longer and don’t pay for college, they can afford much more.

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However, tradition had found its forever home elsewhere. Most “kids” now want to get out and explore. They don’t want to be tied down to one rinky dink town in the middle of nowhere with a population of 100 people (mostly all your family!) So herein lies the problem. Kids want to be apart of something bigger, parents want them closer. If said “kid” does not build within a certain amount of time, the land will need to be put up for sale, again. Unless of course they put a shed on it. Then it’s considered “used property.”

I’m not sure how I feel on the topic. Toblerone’s parents did the same thing. They bought a piece of land in their town and its used as a wood pile at the moment. Toblerone had first choice over his brother but decided to live somewhere else. His younger brother now has the option to do what he wants with the property. The brother doesn’t want to live their either. He wants to live closer to a major city. Quite frankly, I don’t blame him.

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I, honestly, would rather live in this tiny town where is family is because its around people I know. Life would be easier on me, since the people in the town I currently live are rude and refuse to say hi to me.

What do you do when your parents want you to continue on with tradition but the world around you is changing? These small German villages struggle to keep things the way they were but the newer generation refuses to give in, on some level. It would definitely be interesting to see what happens in the next 60 years in these little towns.

Until next time, Readers!!!!! Xoxoxoxo

Things I’ve Acquired In Germany

I’ve been looking around my sweet little house lately and looking at what to renovate next, paint, etc. I’m keeping busy, folks! Then of course my ADD kicks in and I’m off doing whatever else comes to mind. Anything but renovating!!! 🙂

So, I was thinking I should share with you my favorite things I’ve purchased/received here in  Germany. There’s quite a few but let’s start with these:

Typical German Beer Mugs:

They all have a story, that’s my favorite part about them! Some have graphic pictures and others subtle stories.

 

 

2. Electric Mixer

I’ve always wanted one with a bowl that turns. I know this seems ridiculous but this was SO exciting for me. Since I’ve moved here I was “mixing” by hand which was a serious pain. One year later, I get this as a gift from the in-laws and I couldn’t be more excited!!!

3. Wardrobe

This is actually pretty cool. I love this wardrobe! It holds our jackets (and my purses) in the left side and the shoes in the drawers. (see below.) Keeps everything neat and tidy! Just how I like it.

4. Wine Rack

We bought this wine rack ages ago at Ikea and I thought for sure we would never fill it up. Boy was I wrong. If there is anything I’ve learned – the Germans love their wine however paying over 3 euro for a bottle is considered expensive. This allows them to buy in bulk. When we go to the winery, we come with with cases upon cases of wine. It’s insane. Speaking of…it’s time to take a new trip! We have spaces that are empty!

 

More to come later!!!!

Whats your favorite thing in your house?!

Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxo