Welcome to our life!

Hi, I'm Allison! I'm a thirtysomething, freshly baked, stay-at-home mom. I'm originally from Connecticut, now living in Germany, hence the name of the blog. I live in southern Germany with my German husband and our baby boy. Life has turned out to be nothing I ever expected, and am so incredibly happy with it! We certainly do have a lot of laughs! I hope you will enjoy following our new experiences raising a little half American/ half German in a little German town.

Samstag, 26. September 2009

Dresden in pictures!

I finally found my camera, so I can post pictures from last weekend. Some more pictures are on my phone, so that will take a little more time to get them here. But for the meantime, here's one of the most beautiful cities I've visited:
We came up from the parking garage to find a Radeburger beer fest in the Altmarkt (old market.) It was so cute and German, what a great greeting!

And here's what we saw when we turned to the right to head out of the Altmarkt:

We made our way towards the River Elbe, and on our way, found ourselves at the Frauenkirche (Women's Church). The church is beautiful! It was rebuilt after being completely destroyed in bombing during WWII. Amazingly, the rebuilding began in 1993, the ruins remaining for over 40 years. It really makes you think about what Dresden looked like when it was part of East Germany.
Okay, most of these pictures are on my phone, so please click on the link so you can actually see what the church looks like!

From here, we made our way to the Elbe, here's what we found:

I'm already hoping to make a trip back, to relax, enjoy the sights and visit a few museums!

Donnerstag, 24. September 2009

Let the countdown begin!!

Obviously, this will be a ridiculously quick post on a Friday morning, right before I leave for work. But, I was on one of my favorite websites two days ago: the Nest, and you would not believe what I saw- 100 days until Christmas!!!! Oh my gosh! This means that I have the following things coming up:
-finish teaching program (hopefully)
-go to the Krautfest this year
-take three teaching tests, one to two of which will be completed in FLORIDA during my October break! Wahoo!
-after October break, start planning IMMEDIATELY for what will be hopefully, our final Thanksgiving party in our apartment!
-figure out travel dates for Christmas
-shop, shop, shop!

All very exciting things on this list, some a bit stress-inducing, but all, well worth it!
Now, I'm looking forward to 100 days from now, looking back on yet another crazy and fun fall and pre-holiday season!

Dienstag, 22. September 2009

Dresden without pictures

My camera is downstairs, so I can't post pictures right now. But, we were in Dresden this past weekend. We had two reasons for our visit: 1.meet up with a friend who recently built a house, 2.meet up with Joern's old boss who lives in the area.
We left on Friday night at 7:45. Yes, we knew it was going to be a long trip, but Joern would rather leave late and not sit in traffic. We arrived at our hotel at 12:30. Our hotel turned out to be so great! It was really inexpensive, and very clean and new. We were so pleased!
On Saturday morning, after our incredible 5 Euro breakfast at the hotel, we headed out for Dresden center. It turns out that Dresden is an amazingly beautiful city that rebuilt incredibly after the wall came down 20 years ago. We spent a few hours just strolling around. I'm in love, and can't wait to get back one day!
In the early afternoon, we headed out to my friend Lelia's house. She lives about 15 minutes outside of the city, in a wonderful neighborhood. The house was beautiful! We learned so much and had a wonderful chat! Plus, she made really yummy Hostess-esque cupcakes! Hooray for good American bakers living in Germany :)
We had lots of fun hanging out with Lelia and her husband, but had to leave around 5:00 for Aue, which is about an hour southwest of Dresden. It is still firmly entrenched in the former East Germany, but it is a beautiful area as well. Aue lies in the Erzgiberge, Ore Mountains. Sadly, I don't think I got any pictures of the area, but it is incredibly gorgeous!
We made our way to Mr. Marx's house, which is at the end of a street, a huge, very private property. We got to say hi to "Dusty" his Bernese Mountain Dog. We also met the many rabbits that his children keep. It was so cool! After getting his daughter and wife, we headed for our B&B, which was on a farm, and overlooking the mountains. It was quite beautiful! Once we checked in, we headed out to the International Brass and Wind Band Festival. It is a weekend event, where bands from mostly Europe, but sometimes other continents, assemble to highlight their music. When we arrived, it was easy to tell that this was set up with a party atmosphere, taking place in a huge fest tent. The food was typical "fest food," and Joern and I both had Thüringer Bratwursts, because they are "native" to the area. We enjoyed some good beer and enjoyed the music. My favorite band was the Bielefeld Pipes and Drums from Scotland. But, I also really enjoyed the Police Music from Zurich. It made me laugh to see how band music could be treated with such a party feeling. Leave it to the Germans!
We set out early on Sunday morning, and made it home by noon. I went sraight to bed, because I was feeling so icky! Overall though, it was a really great weekend!

Montag, 14. September 2009

A word about work

Two and a half weeks ago, the ISS began a new schoolyear. Its been an interesting ride so far, and I am kind of excited to look back at this year already. I'm learning so much!
I feel like the Incredible Moving Allison, as my third year at ISS, and I am again, in a new classroom. This year, I'm back with Junior Kindergarten, the 4 year-olds. Wow. You forget how tiny they are when you move up. Of course, you quickly remember though, as soon as they walk through the classroom door. We have a fabulous class this year. So far, 15, with room for 3 more. We have 3 Japanese kids who are new to the school, with no English. We also have 1 German girl who is also new, again, no English, at least I can communicate with her though. The rest of the class is an interesting mix: Mexican, German and American, American, German, Japanese, Swedish and Bosnian, Korean, and American and South African.
I'm already learning Korean from the Korean mother-tongue teacher. She taught me our "Good Morning" song in Korean, and taught me how to say, "hello" and "thank you" in Korean. I also learned from my friend Iris how to say, "sit down" in Japanese, which has definately proved invaluable this year!
We're out in portable classrooms this year. It is depressing to think that Germans refer to portables as "containers," as I always feel like I'm headed into a shipping container. Actually, they are connected, so that we have our own little building outside of the school, with rather large classrooms. The biggest drawback is the sound of the rain on the metal roof. We're all in a huge learning process this year, but the good news is that I will really end the year in a different position with much stronger abilities in the teaching field.
The teacher I work with this year is very nice. She is German, and only recently returned to teaching from being a stay-at-home mom. I give her credit, it can't be easy.
Of course, this year will be filled with ups and downs. There is a lot of stress, but hopefully, as we get more into a routine, the kids will as well. The kids are adorable though, and that's what is really most important!

Montag, 7. September 2009

ABC's of Me

I've been so bad at blogging lately. I just want to get back in the swing of things. So, here's the beginning of my attempt at more regular blogging!

A- Age: 30
B- Bed size: double, but hopefully soon, king
C- Chore you hate: cleaning the bathroom
D- Dog's name: we don't have one right now, and I won't tell our planned name for the
puppy we get when we build our house. Chloe and Sox were my last dogs.
E- Essential starts to your day: coffee and a lovely shower
F- Favorite color: pink
G- Gold, silver, or platinum- white gold
H- Height: 5'2"
I- Instruments you play: none in the past long time, but I played flute and bass clarinet through high school
J- Job: teaching assistant/ student teacher
K- Kids: hopefully in the not-too-distant futre
L- Living arrangements: soon to be changing. Right now, a 650 sq.ft, one bedroom apartment.
M- Mom's name: Kathy
N- Nicknames: Schemer, Angel(ina), Sweet Potato
O- Overnight stay in the hospital other than birth: 5 years old when I had pneumonia
P- Pet peeve: right now is the healthcare debate in the US. How on earth can people not support universal coverage???
Q- "I'm throwing seven different kinds of smoke." You, Me, and Dupree
R- Right handed or left: Right
S- Siblings: 1 12 year-old sister, Ginia, 1 stepbrother, no siblings-in-law, lots of friends who have served as my siblings
T- Time you wake up: 5:30 on weekdays, 7:00 on weekends
U- Underwear: most often, bikinis
V- Vegetable you dislike: Okra
W- Ways you run late: what ways do I not run late? Usually, it involves looking for my glasses
X- X-Rays you've had: Oy! Knees, fingers, feet, wrists, chest, ankle, teeth
Y- Yummy food you make: pies, cakes, and fresh basil, tomato, and garlc pasta
z- Zoo favorite: Sloths, penguins

Sonntag, 6. September 2009


When we visited Italy a few weeks ago, we stopped at a wonderful farmer's market in Jesolo. We had lots of fun shopping there, and it was pretty hard to turn away from so many beautiful, delicious smelling, fresh fruits and vegetables. We ended up buying a crate of peaches and a crate of sauce tomatoes, as well as many other items. But, these crates were a great deal, and my mind was already abuzz with ideas for how to use these amazing fruits.
The day after we got home, I busily searched the internet to find a recipe for peach pie. I found one on Suite101.com
Fresh Peach Pie Recipe

* Double pie crust (9 inch size)
* 5 cups of fresh ripe peaches (sliced)
* 1 tsp lemon juice
* 1 cup sugar
* ¼ cup regular flour
* ¼ tsp cinnamon
* 2 TBS butter


1. You can make your own pie crust or get a frozen double crust of refrigerator crusts. If you’re not making your own, the pie crusts in the refrigerator section taste more like homemade than the freezer types.
2. If using prepared crusts, let them thaw out or warm up.
3. Mix the lemon juice with the fresh peaches. Stir a little bit to get the lemon juice mixed in.
4. In a separate bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Mix well.
5. Stir the sugar/flour mix in with the peaches.
6. Pour the peach mixture in a pie crust.
7. Dot the butter evenly around on top of the peach mix in the crust.
8. Top with the second crust.
9. Use a knife to make slits in the top pie crust.
10. Flute the edges of the crust. In other words, mash the edges together and then use your fingers to make little ridges like you see on pie crusts in the store.
11. Bake in a preheated 425 degree F oven for around 40 minutes. Check often near the end of the baking time as ovens can vary. The middle of the pie should be a pretty buttery brown, and you’ll see bubbles in the knife slits.
12. You’ll probably need to put strips of tin foil or a pie edge protector around the outside edge of the pie the last 15 minutes or so. Fluted edges tend to get darker than the center on homemade pies.

I used Martha Stewart's recipe for Pate Brisee, which is delicious, and a pretty fail-proof pie crust. It worked fabulously with the peach pie.

It was a sweet and delicious way to prolong our vacation memories!

I also made a really yummy pasta sauce with all those many sauce tomatoes. It was really easy to make a delicious homemade tomato sauce.
I first washed and removed the stem and seeds from the many, many tomatoes.

Then, I chopped them.

Pureed them in the food processor.

Sauteed lots of garlic and onions in olive oil in the stock pot.

Then, I added the tomato sauce, basil, salt, and some italian seasoning. Simmer for a few hours, and that's all! Delicious, wonderful tomato sauce! I froze it in portions. This way, we'll be able to enjoy yummy sauce made from farmer's market tomatoes for months to come!