Off To Italy We Go (Part Three)

The last and final installment of our vacation in Italy is FINALLY hot off the presses. Just a quick little update…I was taking a few classes during the summer and it took over my life! Hence why I haven’t said much since June! My apologies! I’m back at it though and have lined up quite a few fun posts!

Ok…on with it!

Our trip ended with a beautiful Easter Sunday Hike followed by a wonderful dinner of course. Luckily, the Easter bunny found me in Italy. I did send him a note to let him know so I’m glad he got that in time.

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But FIRST…the morning church bells that remind me of all things Europe. When we first moved to Germany, I used to be so annoyed by the early morning bell show that took place right outside my window (were were a road away from the church). But now, somehow, it brings me back really great memories of always knowing what time it was!

 

This was the front of our hotel. For some reason I just feel like decorations in Europe are really different. Granted, a majority of the products are with wood and felt but I just thought these big things outside the hotel were so cool! What weird shapes!

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Off we went on our hike (two VERY hungover people in tow…and no it wasn’t me!). I literally pushed Toblerone up the hill. Talk about a workout! But it was fun. We were walking towards a little restaurant that was a few miles up the mountain. And when I say up..I mean up.

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The views were beautiful and the little bits of snow on the ground reminded us quickly how high up we actually were.

We made it to the restaurant and I met a few friends, furry ones of course! Apparently goats love peanuts. Did you know that?

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On our way back down the mountain towards our hotel after a few drinks we stopped for some more drinking of course and snacks. My father-in-law is always providing the drinks for us. Only the best wine there is! (Note: The two most hungover people with no wine in their hands….:-) Brothers…)

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Back at the hotel we got ready for dinner. I put on my Easter dress and headed down to the dining room.

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Dinner was an array of amazing things. They had plate upon plate of meats, cheese, fruits, salad bar, etc. We also got a lamb or fish dinner and dessert but the main idea was a buffet! I do love me a good buffet!

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The weekend ended with a few drinks at the bar. My favorite? Amaretto liqueur with apple cider. The BEST. Try it sometime, you’ll thank me! Looking forward to going back to this hotel one day. We had such a great time!

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Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxo

Goodbye Weekend, Please Come Again

This weekend was the first semi-nice weekend since last year that it was just me, Toblerone, and the Harley Jones ButtButt. We actually took it really easy but it was nice to just be us and be at home. We’ve had a lot of visitors (which I LOVE! Gimme more!!), lots of family get together things, soccer games, and work. But this was the first weekend I actually felt relaxed and able to pull myself together enough to clean the house (which I’ve been boycotting for a few weeks.) Here’s my weekend in review!

Saturday morning I woke up and tried to make toast with my toaster that is ten sizes too small….seriously.

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BUT THEN….I FINALLY got my Easter bunny package from my momma! Get this, she sent it out on March 23rd and it arrived on May 4th (Birthday to my Dad!). So I threw the toast over my shoulder and ravished through that thing eating up all the yum yums before Toblerone caught on. Then he wanted in on the chocolate chaos!

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Later that day we went to what we thought would be the Farmers Market but ended up being the giant annual flea market!! Which I was in HEAVEN! I always liked flea markets because I relish in the stories of the items. Who owned them? Were they used a lot? That kind of thing. But in Germany, this is like a whole new realm! They have different old stuff and its cool! I keep making myself into a bigger nerd than I want to be!

Check out this prize!! Who remembers Alf?!?!?

Check out this prize!! Who remembers Alf?!?!?

So I ended up talking with this old guy and he had so many antiques and I bought from him a musical beer stein for my collection. Yes, I’m collecting but only ones that are from Germany. Then I got two decorative things for my “Cape Cod” guest room. It’s my happy place and not close to finished but it’s slowly getting there!

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After the flea market it started to pour. Germany seems to be a lot like Seattle. It is ALWAYS raining in springtime. Want to punch babies! I need sunshine!!! PLEASE!!!! The hubs got me set up on the couch with blankies and my comfy pants and a tea. I wrote a blog or two and just chilled out. It was fantastic! Just what I needed.

Sunday I cleaned the entire house while Toblerone was at his soccer game. He came home with a black eye trying to hit a header and some other kids head smashed into his face. Awesome. However, now I can imagine him as Brad Pitt in the fight club and it’s sexy!

Our town's Maibaum = May Tree

Our town’s Maibaum = May Tree

We went out to dinner to celebrate his parent’s 34th wedding anniversary and I had asparagus cream soup and a salad. Asparagus only really comes out this time of year in Germany and its a special time. So, we have to eat it up while we can. They are big on white asparagus with hollandaise sauce.

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After that, we sat outside to soak up the remaining bits of the sun with some white wine while Toblerone iced his face!

Look closely into the wine...Can you find the upside down church steeple?

Look closely into the wine…Can you find the upside down church steeple?

What did you do this weekend? Anything exciting?!

Until next time, Readers!!!! xoxoxoxoxo

It’s Ok To Be A Wino For A Day

By definition, a “Wino” is someone who drinks alcoholic beverages in excess. I suppose most of us have been there at one point or another so I’m saying it’s ok! Just don’t make it a habit, but of course PLEASE go and enjoy St. Pat’s Day for me! They don’t celebrate it here so I made up for it already. ūüôā

This past weekend Toblerone came up with a great little getaway for us. I know you’re thinking it must be some cute romantic place in France or possibly in Italy. Oh no, my friends, this would be in the next “state” over to the wine country to participate in a wine marathon. In Rhineland-Pfalz there is a ridiculous amount of personal “wineries.” What do I mean by that? Well, quite literally, many households in each town of this “state” grow their own grapes and make their own wine. So it’s completely normal to go into a stranger’s home and drink their wine at the dining room table with them. Some even have fancy little “wine cellars” set up. Their basements turned into a winery full of giant machines and tubes.

For me it was a little strange at first to be walking into people’s homes but I’ve seen crazier things in Germany (Note: Karneval.) The first lady we went to is no longer making wine since her husband died but she’s adorable and her house smelled like sugar and cookie dough. And it was during this particular visit that I realized I will never really learn German. It’s impossible. Her dialect was unbelievably difficult to understand even Toblerone had a hard time understanding her.

I think I should mention that the house visits are not part of the wine marathon. Oh no…this was the pre-tasting in fact. We went to another house and there the clock ticked without us knowing and the world became a little more fuzzy. Naturally.

After several glasses of wine we walked…ahem…stumbled around the streets covered in grape vines and to a restaurant nearby where waiting for 4 minutes felt like 4 hours. We were STARVING. Toblerone, the genius that he is, couldn’t wait anymore so he went to just “check out” the buffet but I sat there with camera in hand counting down…5….4….3…2…….1….*click* He dipped his little finger in the mashed potatoes!!! HI-LARIOUS! You can’t tell me that’s not the greatest picture ever! Caught in the act – I call it! ūüôā I can hear his mother now – calling him a farmer (aka redneck in our language!)

Anywho so after that we had to go to sleep for a bit, we were not going to survive the marathon if we didn’t! Besides the splitting wine headache really did me in! Around 8pm or so we made our way through this gorgeous little town to the town hall. It was so quiet on the streets and the lighting was weird, I felt like I was transported back to Jack the Ripper days.

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When we get to the town hall it’s packed with young and hot people. I about died. I don’t know where they all came from because well…I’ve lived here for one year and have seen maybe 2 people who I consider really gorgeous and here – It was like a flood of them! I mean girls had long hair (which I don’t see often) and the guys were tall and really handsome. It was so weird!!! Not that it matters I was just really shocked. Clearly, I’ve been living in a hole.

So the marathon was from 6pm Saturday to 6pm Sunday. 24 hours of drinking, bands, and food! It was awesome! Except by 1:30am we could no longer continue and needed sleep. We’re lame and old – I realize this. The following morning was atrocious¬†as we tried to recover. More so for Toblerone than me but we survived. We stopped quickly at a castle (since there are probably 5 or 6 within a 20 mile radius) and hit the road back home. All in all it was a great time and an incredibly beautiful place. It’s creeping up to possibly my top ten places – easily. We’re going back in May, who’s coming with me?!

Until next time, Readers!!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Who Took The Cork Out Of My Lunch?

Almost a year ago when I came to Germany for the first time (when it was cold and snowy) I went to a winery (my first one, ever!) with a few of Toblerone’s family. If you missed that blog, do go back and read it here first and then come back to this one.

We decided to head back again while it was blistering hot for some wine tasting and a picnic! Grand idea if I do say so myself! The drive itself is about an hour or more away which sucks but it’s well worth it! Upon arrival Toblerone’s uncle, The Mayor (for real), purchased 12 cases of wine within 5 minutes. I kid you not! Mind you, we are 5 people squished into one car leaving only the minimal space in the trunk for everyone’s purchases! Germans love their wine!


We tasted this and that, that and this and I was feeling the laughter start to bubble inside of me. You know that moment when you realize you’re buzzed and everything seems to be either hilarious or very serious. I was reading the back of a wine bottle like it was my rough draft for the President’s speech! Everything in my glass tasted awesome no matter what it was. I couldn’t tell the difference anymore between what was red, white, champagne, or pee. It was all amazing!

Toblerone's Uncle (left) and Dad (right)


We packed up our car with our purchased cases, leaving no room for our cooler of snacks! Holy NOT ok! Up we went to my favorite spot at this winery. The circular monument/chapel for the dead Nazi (not all by choice) soldiers. I know, sounds morbid and morally wrong but you need to read the other blog, like I told you to, first. Why is this my favorite place? Because there is something magical about this small little chapel in the middle of a winery with quite a view. And there we were eating our wurst sandwiches, drinking our newly purchased wine, and enjoying the view of the surrounding countries. Hello France, Hello Switzerland, and Hello Germany’s Black Forest!¬†

I finally took some pictures for you guys of the inside of this sweet little chapel. With large frames on each wall with all the photos of those men, and boys, from this particular town that died in WWII. This town isn’t large so it made me think that at one point, there were probably a total of 10 dudes in the town after the war. What a ratio that must have been! As I looked at all the faces of lives lost I couldn’t help but feel an overwhelming sadness. All so young and all share the same undeserved fate. And then again, maybe this had to do with the massive buzz I was working with!

It was SUCH a nice day and I swear to all that come to visit me, I will absolutely, 100% bring you to this place. To eat, drink, and be fantabulous! Not to mention, there is something so right about eating the wine grapes right off of the tree. Speaking of…we planted two wine trees ourselves..can’t WAIT until those babies come in!!!

Most importantly, before you go to the bathroom or clean the grout in your tiled floors with a toothbrush…please (PLEASE, I’M BEGGING YOU!) go over to the facebook blog page, and “like” the page! It’s easy as a click since I put the the handy dandy link to the right hand side here ūüôā Vielen Dank f√ľr¬†Ihre Unterst√ľtzung! (Thank you for your support!)

Until next time, Readers!! xoxoxo

White Wine Sangria – Splash Into Summer

I LOVE a great drink and more importantly, one that tastes good!

Super easy recipe for White Wine Sangria. It’s great for get togethers or summer BBQ’s.

I normally always double my recipes since I have more than 4 people over our house but here is the single recipe:

1 750ml of DRY White Wine – chilled

1 Cup Strawberries – washed, and halved.

1 Small orange – Cut into slices, leave the peel on, remove seeds

1 Large Red Apple – Cut into slices, leave the peel on, remove core and seeds

1 Bottle of your favorite ginger-ale type drink. I use Sprite.

Place all the fruit in drink container and pour the white wine over the fruit. Keep refridgerated. When it’s time to serve, you can use an ice-cube or two, I don’t. Pour into white wine glass and quick splash of the sprite. VOILA! It’s easy, fast, and SO incredibly tasty!

Another way I love to do this, if you want to get really fancy is:

1 Bottle of sweet champagne,

1 bottle of white wine

2-5 shots of peach schnapps (depending on your desired sweetness)

Mix altogether and cut up peaches and strawberries. Extra good!!!

Cheers!!!

xoxoxoxoxo

For The Love Of…

I know, I know…I’ve fallen off the beaten path of the blog. I just got caught up in the glorious life I’m living. So shoot me. So to counter my other post¬†about what I don’t fancy, I decided to grace you all with what I DO like.¬† Shall we?¬†

BEER FOR BREAKFAST

Literally, do it. Honestly, I was a little shocked at the fact that it was 11am…I’m hanging with the ladies and they bring out a bottle of wine. Say WHAT?! Who would turn that down!? I asked them if this was¬†the usual¬†and they said it was completely normal, not frowned upon, and encouraged!! There I sat, sipping the bitter goodness and thought to myself, “never will I ever have to say: It’s 5 o’clock somewhere!” So to my American friends… As you are all waking up and sipping your cup o’ joe, I’m sipping on some grape juice and NO ONE¬†calls me an alcoholic. Queue the envy.

SPONGEBOB PANTS ARE FOR BED

To all you Walmart-goers, you have probably witnessed someone wearing ridiculous clothes or maybe received one of those emails showing the “best dressers”? You know, those infamous¬†“Pajama-¬†wearers”, who wear them to¬† go out to eat and for picnics in public places. I won’t lie, I’ve been known to don my favorite sock monkey¬†or reindeer pj’s¬†(yes, this is true… I do have these) back when I was younger, however, now that I’m older, I still would prefer to walk around in them but here in good old Germ, it’s not so cute. Even wearing my black workout-esque¬†pants, is a big no no¬†(I do it anyways). For some reason, no matter what time of day, no matter where you are going, wearing your pj’s¬†is completely unacceptable. Most people here are always dressed nicely, not to the 9’s but decent.¬† If you slipped on those silky spongebob¬†pj pants that grandma gene bought you christmas ’08, you will be stoned to death. They stare you down and make you feel like a weirdo. Like you’re so disgusting! As if! However, going along with this blog here, I think it sends a good message. Always look your best, you never know what you will end up doing or who you will see. Maybe that Ex of yours with the bad hair and you want to show them they left you for the uglier girl!¬† The world¬†should be cleaned up a bit¬†of the trash it’s accumulated. Just sayin!

I SCREAM, YOU SCREAM, WE ALL SCREAM FOR SALAD

Of course! Did you think I would actually say ice cream? That’s¬†lame. The thing I LOVE here is the salad bars. At first, I thought it was weird and basically not a salad bar. It was a mess of shaved vegetables drowning in vinegar. I never thought I would say this but the American salads/salad bars are a little over the top (just like we do everything!). You get the wide variety of random things from sunflower seeds to beets (gag). Here it’s very simple you have German potato salad, and the following items all shredded to thin pieces and put in a bowl (separately, not all together) and mixed with a vinegar type dressing: carrots, cucumber, cabbage, and few others there are no translations for.¬† It’s awesome. There is lettuce…like boston lettuce but you take a few pieces in addition to the others. Sooo¬†Delish! And so simple! I mean, it’s incredibly easy to prepare first of all but you have a few selections – aka not wasting food at the end of the day! Also, you’re eating your vegetables…without adding gobs and gobs of fattening¬†salad dressings.¬†Ranch dressing? No. Thousand Island? Negative. Blue Cheese? Nada. ¬†These people got it going on! I’m on my way to finding out why the Euro’s have a less % of fat people than the Americans! Mission Fat is currently¬†in sesh!

I’VE GOT THE GOLDEN TICKET

One of the first things I noticed when I was here was the toilet paper. There were many different choices like ones with butterflies or clouds, and not just any clouds…COLORED clouds. Yeah, pretty colors and shapes on each piece. Ahh, magnificent! I’m living a life of luxury! While watching the tube this past week Toblerone and I got fixated on an incredible opportunity regarding this stuff.

Gold imprinted toilet paper. No joke, this restaurant¬†(odd)¬†here in Germany has this fancy little machine in the backroom and they take whatever mold you want and make you the Cr√®me de la Cr√®me of toilet paper. It showed one woman, a doctor, who would put out the 150 Euro to have her fancy schmance paper made with a gold crown on it each month. She said it’s because she just likes it. Simple enough for me! Do it girlfriend!

IT’S A WOMAN’S WORLD

Yes, Angela Merkel – what a catch! Doesn’t she look like someone you just want to run up to and hug? I’m not a feminist by any means but I think it really says something about a country that can agree to have¬†a woman as the head of their precious land (Chancellor to be precise)¬†and not go into a rage about how a woman shouldn’t be in this position.¬† She has been in this role since election in 2005 and has¬†won the hearts of many. I’ve yet to meet one person who doesn’t respect her and what she has accomplished.¬† Americans…get with the damn program! Hilary running for prez was a great start however the comments of, “a woman would bring too much emotion into government.” WHAT IS THAT?! Ignorance.

More so, I love the idea of a completely equal world. We need to go a long way but lord knows we’ve got an even longer way to go. I’m not into politics, nor will I ever be, and upon moving here I had no idea what type of government ran this place but learning that a¬†woman (gasp!)¬†was head of this and has been for many o’ years completely impressed me. I felt it was totally necessary to share. I wish we lived in a world where this was normal and I didn’t have to blog about it. Until then…

SUNDAY FUNDAY

For a good laugh, you should all be aware that Sunday Funday¬†was invented by the Catholics. I attempted to clean and do housework on Sunday BUT I was very quickly told that it’s a Sunday. Yeah ok, whats the point?? It’s a day of relaxation. You work like crazy during the week and Saturdays you can do housework, Sundays are a day reserved for fun and¬†relaxation. Hmm, ok. For me, it doesn’t matter. I’m not¬†working¬†so I’m always relaxed. (Thanks¬†Toblerone!) ¬†I’ve never felt so wrong about picking up gardening tool and looking (only looking) at the ground below.¬† Then I thought about it and what is wrong with relaxing with your family…throwing¬†ribs on the Barbie and drinking bottles (plural) of wine?

 

¬†Well done Deutschland, you’ve managed to impress me and have me follow suit with your ways. *Applause* It takes a¬† lot for me to give in to how others live their life but I figured, some day I’m going to have to get over it and accept it and honor it. Now if only I could get my hands on some golden toilet paper. Then I would be REALLY living!¬†¬†

Ciao for now readers! This weekend I will be heading out to my first disco for a girls night. This could get interesting…MAYBE I’ll blog about it, but I may not be able to. You know…what happens in….stays in.

xoxoxoxoxo