Monday, November 29, 2010

Christmas time is near.

It's been cold here in Germany. Very cold. Sehr sehr kalt. (Which I can't say without being corrected by Cheeseball. She still understands a lot more German than she speaks, but what she speaks sounds like actual German. Versus my French-y American German. And El niño's El Deutsch.)

frozen spiderweb
I'm going to pretend I think this spider froze to death and fell off its web instead of the more likely migration INTO MY HOUSE.

Around this time of year, Christmas Markets spring up all over the country. These are heavy with warm, mulled wine (glühwein), potatos fried in various and sundry ways, beautifully carved ornaments & wreaths and the usual tourist junk that accumulates in any fair type setting. This past weekend, we caught the train up to Stuttgart for the Stuttgarter Weihnachtsmarkt. It was full of people, cold and crisp, smelled wonderful and was so much fun. I can't wait to visit other markets in different towns!

Stuttgarter Weihnachtsmarkt 2010

Stuttgarter Weihnachtsmarkt 2010

Stuttgarter Weihnachtsmarkt 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010

Oh, hello there.

Oh good, the blog is still here. I'm not sure what happened, but I lost steam for a while there. In the past few months, we've experienced our first Oktoberfest, gone to Italy, cheered El NiƱo in swim meets wandering across Western Germany, started watching the snow fall and I've started selling crocheted hats!

While Oktoberfest is technically only in Munich, we went to a fall festival with lots of beer and sausage.

Stuttgarter Volksfest 2010

Stuttgarter Volksfest 2010
We drink beer and wear Adidas!

Earlier this month, we went to Lignano Sabbiadoro in Northern Italy at the edge of the Mediterranean Sea. It was a neat little tourist town that is probably packed to the gills in the summer, but was quiet and welcoming at the beginning of the winter. It was a very short trip (although the drive with four kids under ten felt somewhat long) with two days spent driving, one day spent at a swim meet and one day spent wandering Venice.

Venice was amazing. We wandered aimlessly, admiring beautiful buildings that turned out to be things like grocery stores, until we found ourselves passing the same friendly Thai vendor for the fourth time. With phones out of service and the garmin confused by the lack of roads, we ended up buying a map. We explained to the kids what a map was and how in the olden days people were able to find their way with nothing more than a brightly colored piece of paper to guide them. They were in awe. The trip was a lot of fun, and whet our appetite for more exploration.

As I mentioned, I've also started selling crocheted hats. It started with a craft fair here that I submitted a few hats to. Only two sold, but an acquaintance recognized the work as mine and asked me to make a custom hat like one I had made for Cheeseball.

I later added a pink flower to this one.

This was the color scheme requested for my first order. Awesome, no?

Several other people overheard and I've received a bunch of other orders within the same group. I also volunteered to crochet some hats for El Niño's swim team and they sold 6 last week, proceeds going to the team. It's all been so fun and empowering, that I decided to open a store on Etsy. So, that was a really long way of saying...check out my shop!

So, that's three months in a nutshell. Suddenly I realize that I've missed this space and I think that means I'll wander back sooner rather than later next time.