Thursday, July 21, 2011

das Haus

At long last, some photos of the house. Naked, but you can imagine it furnished! As soon as our furniture gets here, I'll post again, but don't hold your breath, it'll be awhile! We did get a dining room table that I'm in love with (and begging the kids not to immediately destroy.) Finally my old table will by my sewing table so I'm not moving things all over trying to fit it all on one desk! On the downside, there goes my excuse! And the Man Cave will get a table too- never thought I'd own 3 dining room tables. weird.
 This is the view from the loft area upstairs that will be the play room/reading room (depending on the consciousness of the beans.) I found some awesome papasan like chairs at the BX here that are working out great in there! They double as reading chairs, or veterinary stables for wounded ponies. I love, love, love this window. I'll try to get a photo looking out- I see a farm and beautiful cows that way!
 This is from in the loft looking back towards the bedrooms and the stairs. The exposed beams in this house give it so much warmth and character. The Germans are anti-carpet and so many of the houses we saw were tile everywhere, I felt like I was in a giant bathroom. I'm loving the wood here!
 This will hopefully be the nursery some day in the not too distant future. No- we don't need one yet, but it's on the menu. It's a small room, but it'll fit a shrank (wardrobe) and a crib just fine!
 This is the girls' room. So much light! Which is generally a good thing, except for long summer days. My better half rigged up some curtains for me so they'd stop showing up at 6 am and telling me at 9pm, "but it's light out!" They'll have twin beds on either side of the windows. I really wanted to do bunk beds here, but full height wall space is at a premium, so if they want a closet, the bunk beds have to go. (German houses rarely come with closets built in. You buy a wardrobe to put your things in.)
 This is a view from the main floor of the stairs. By German standards these stair are very, very wide! Read: our bed should fit up there! (Assuming it ever gets here...) And the kids are still enjoying going up and down, up and down, up and down... The downstairs leads to the laundry room and 3 more rooms (guest bed, storage and man cave.) The Man is very excited about the Man Cave. It's small, but he's been cleared hot for a little Mt Dew fridge and to lock himself in now and again. You know, when he gets that glazed, no more glitter pony princess time look ;) Or to study, whatever.
 This is my kitchen, again by German standards, quite large! We now have a "whole" fridge as well. Apparently they go shopping every 15 minutes here because the fridges are tiny and there was no freezer. "For what?" Luckily we get to borrow one for the duration of our stay because we need a freezer!
 This is looking out my front door through the mudroom. Love the Secret Garden-ness of this place! Tonight as I made dinner the girls ran around outside making a fairy garden. love it.
 Lovely view of the throne, eh? I put this one in to show the tile work in the bathrooms. I really like it! We saw so, so many 70's green palm tree tiles in our house hunting trips. yikes.
 This is my PANTRY! Yes, I'm yelling. This is so unheard of. Funny, it has a doo hickey on it to turn the light on when you open the door. Cool, right? Only if you notice it. I spent the better part of 20 minutes trying to find a light switch to turn off the light!
This is the living/dining room area as seen from the kitchen. The window are so large here I rarely turn on any lights during the day.
 This is a little better shot of the view from the windows.
 Okay, can you tell I'm obsessed with this view? I just love it! And now I have my swank coffee maker and can make my own latte and read a book on the porch. happiness.
 This is looking out the other way. That's a walnut tree out the right side. Did you know, that when you look up how to harvest walnuts it says something about wearing gloves so as not to stain your fingers? Turns out that should be adhered to. Stinking husks are light, they deceive you! Took me days to get my nails just not embarrassing.
Last one of the patio, promise! I love this green. You can smell it. My yard smells green. And occasionally like cows, but I've come to like that smell. Didn't see that one coming. And rotting apples. Something so deliciously summer about that smell. I'll take a photo of the apple tree- it is burdened with apples. It looks like a woman 2 days before she goes into labor, just trying to breath. I eat like 5 apples a day (they're small) and the bounty doesn't look dented. My cup runneth over! with apples ;)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Downtown Wittlich

A hottie at the restaurant ;)

Sit still for the photo? What do you mean?

Had to get a sneak pic of this one.

The view down the street from our table.
We went to dinner the other night at a very tasty restaurant called Hella's- Greek food. It was such a beautiful night we ate outside. Luckily there was a light breze as the German's, at least the ones on the patio, are like chimneys!  I had a delicious appetizer of sheep cheese stuffed roasted red peppers in a vinegar sauce. It was supposed to be for all of us, but well, they were too slow! yum. The suflaki I had as an entree was a bit lacking, but the free Ouzo helped out a bit. They actually bring everyone (adult) a shot with their menus, crack me up! We all had a blast and then went to the Walkplatz to see if we couldn't round up some ice cream and look about.

Lovely, lovely area. All the shops were closed, but that was kind of nice as we could look around with out all the crowds. There was this giant rock chair thing that the girls had a blast with. I can't quite remember the inscription, something about it being The Chair of Wittlich.
We passed some bike racks that looked like bicycles that I wish I would have taken a photo of- the girls thought it was hilarious! And last but not least- ICE! yum. We sat in this fabulous little shopping area, sitting outside eating ice cream at 9:30pm with full light outside. And the chairs came with little blankets in case you got cold sitting out there, too cute! Of course as soon as the girls saw the blankets they were "cold" ;)
Found that cute guy again, may take him home ;)

And these were just cute pics of my girlies....
You can kind of see the bicycle in the back-right of the photo.

Yeeeeeee Haaaaw!! She was making that thing work!

Monday, July 11, 2011

4th of July in Germany!

The base threw a lovely 4th celebration, complete with rides and fireworks! We also had a chance to explore the backyard of the new house that day. Here are the photos:
Can you say "Diva?" Adriana picked out those sunglasses and I couldn't say no! And Annelies wanted a side ponytail. Love it!

The local riding school had rides going; the girls were in heaven!

This is a very happy, post berry smile!

Exploring one of the apple trees. I love this yard!

They love taking turns climbing up this stump and sitting on it.

Posing for the camera ;)

This is a berry bush (not sure what kind yet, but edible) that Adriana has parked herself next too for some serious snacking!

Annelies says she is a living statue here. (The New Orleans living statues fascinated her!)

And this would be Adriana's pose. So fitting- I'm Queen of the World!
I have to make this one short as we have to go get a rental car. The Audi we bought 4 days ago that died while I was driving back from the store? "Kaput" as the mechanic said. Cracked head. Not sure what that means, but the expression Jim made as he said it pretty much explained it all. Joys!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

We got the house!

I've been terribly negligent in updating, my apologies! We got the secret garden house and it's perfect inside! I took photos that night, but the previous tenants were mid-move so they're a little crazy. I'll take more today because today we're starting to move in! It's going to be nutty, I have no furniture, but we'll work it out! I only have a  minute now, but wanted to update :) Please pray for us this week that the kids find all this strange a fun thing and not a cause for whining!

Monday, July 4, 2011

If Madeline lived in Germany with Frances Hodgson Burnett...

Tomorrow we go see the inside of a house and this doesn't sound like a big deal except that we've been to so, so many already and I already love the outside of this one and the town and the bakery and the restaurant and it's close proximity to a larger city and it's middle of nowhere-ness, and it's neighboring cows and it's YARD! The latter must be capitalized because it's so remarkable. It's like a wonderland. The closest thing I've ever seen to it is one of my favorite people on earth's mother's home back in Washington. She too lived in a secret garden! If it's awful inside, well, I'll probably cry and be forced to drink a beer at that yummy restaurant there, but anything short of awful and I'm begging Jim for the house! Alright, here are some outside pictures to show you what I love about it. Pray the inside isn't atrocious, pray, pray, pray. We just can't house hunt anymore. We're all going nuts.
Oh, what a photo! So my cropping could be better, but what a shot! I could read in that window. It wants me to read in it with a really good cup o' joe. In the Madeline books, Madeline lives in: an old house in Paris, covered with vines. As soon as Annelies saw another such house she exclaimed, "Mama! I think Madeline moved to Germany!" Her little face when I told her we get to look at this one tomorrow- it was priceless. That's the shot that was online that got me interested. 

 The house is on the corner and this is what you see from the street. And a bunch of those are blackberry bushes-yum. It needs a trim, but I love the privacy!
 This is peering in a break in the hedge to see some of the garden. Apples, peaches, cherries, all growing here! And the thing that looks a bit like a sand pit (lower right) I'm thinking has the makings of a great fire pit!
 The underbelly of a beautiful tree!
 Here's another shot from the road. Sadly, it doesn't come with the beemer. sigh.
This is the front door. Can you stand it?? Did I mention the older couple riding bicycles down the road? And he with wild flowers tucked in the back?? Please Lord, please let it not be funky inside! I am dying to have that be my front door!

Here's are some more photos taken from the website:
I couldn't see this side from where I was, lovely!!
Here's another, taken a little to the right from the last shot: 
Can't you just see Jim and I on the porch while the kids run laps?

Cross your fingers for us everyone, I'm ready to call somewhere home, and this sure could be it! We've seen about 5?6? houses since I last posted pictures and I'm just burnt out. I've prayed and prayed for the right one to fall in our laps, but I think maybe I'm looking at the wrong lap? But this could do it! The guy we spoke with said it's "rustic" inside. I'm praying rustic doesn't mean 70s. Nothing against the decade, but we've seen a lot of homes with a lot of green palm trees tiles. not good.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Bauernsalat in Altrich

I found a house I think I'm in love with, however I can't see inside till tomorrow, so I begged the hubby for a drive by and to scout out the town. It all comes back to the bakery ;) And yes, there is one. Well as it happened, dinner time rolled into this so we thought we'd see if anything was open (nothing is allowed to be open on Sundays here but the bakery for a few short hours and restaurants.) And as luck would have it we found a Gast Haus (translates to Guest House, but has nothing to do with lodging, it means restaurant.) Anyhoo- YUM! Best German food I've had yet! 
The girls ordered chicken cossies, she says, "like McNuggets" funny. We reek of American. But I had to take a photo of them because they were actually discernible chicken, vs. the mystery sludge at the golden arches. Not only that, they were incredible. I don't think I'd ever go to a place and order chicken nuggets for myself, but I will here! They brought a ton of them (13 for 2 kids, little kids, seriously) so I thought I'd finish off one of Adriana's and my eyes lit up and I was in a little bit of chicken heaven! Then Jim and I went at the left overs like, well, kids!

This is a picture of my farmers salad, Bauersalat. I inhaled this too! It's a normal salad, but it has these potatoes cooked like home fries, I can't remember the word, scalloped and then pan fried in butter. Heavenly. But this also had a beautiful egg- look at that orange yolk! That's a well fed bird! Cooked to perfection on top. And a tasty white salad dressing, I'm still trying to figure it out- rice vinegar? sugar? milk? Scrumptious. When you put them all together it's incredible. I will get this again and again till they recognize me (as if being the only Americans in there and the loud kids didn't help! ;) Worth it. Worth dining with a tired, wiggly 2 year old. so yummy. OH! And the lettuce and tomatoes! Not that mealy stuff- this was picked today or yesterday, but I'd bet $10 on today! I haven't had lettuce like that since I grew it myself!

This is the outside of the restaurant.

And this is the bakery across the street! I love this town. Must live here.

And this is down the road. I swear, the cutest most well-kept town I've seen yet!

The Truck Stop/ Hof Breit

We went to the neatest restaurant the other night, the locals call it the Truck Stop. The food is very good, but what makes it, is the surroundings. The land slopes away from the restaurant and behind it on one side is a beautiful deer farm. With fawns! The girls were in heaven!

Here's the view of the restaurant that the deer see.

And the piece de resistance? Ooooh yeaahhh... Which you can see from the restaurant!

How could I not? But I ordered the little one, Jim ordered me the big one!

I had to take this shot- 2, TWO, schnitzels with a slice of ham and 2 fried eggs. and fries. Jim ate the whole thing. I don't even have words. I'm impressed and horrified all at once! (Mostly the former.)

Annelies and Adriana found a little friend and after a few translations courtesy of Jim they were fast friends! All in all it was a lovely night!