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.

Dienstag, 27. April 2010

10 years!

10 years ago today, Joern said his first words in person to me: "Hello. I hope you had a nice trip." And I then said my frist words to Joern in person, "Hi. I really need to go to bed."
It was a slightly crazy day, April 27, 2000. I had an early flight out of Dublin, and had some problems with the taxi I had ordered to take me to the airport. I ended up waiting at the airport for 2 hours, which at 5:00 am for a college student is absolutely unbearable! I arrived in Munich in the early afternoon to find not Joern, but his parents, Wolfgang and Hildegard, at the arrivals gate, with a sign, "Wellcome Alison." Although spelled a little off, I knew they were there to get me. Joern's parents were kind enough to take me to Munich center, to the Hofbrauhaus for lunch. Although Wolfgang doesn't speak much English, he was able to communicate that I should have a maß, or a liter of Hofbrauhaus beer. The liter of beer, accompanied by my sausage and sauerkraut platter, spelled trouble for me on the way back to Stuttgart. To add insult to my stomach, Wolfgang loved speeding through the streets of Munich, needing to jump on the brakes because the GPS could not keep up with him. It was on two hour trip back to Stuttgart, beer and sauerkraut in stomach, barreling down the autobahn at 125 mph and being jolted forward whenever we encountered a "linksfahrer," or slow guy in the left lane, that I first experienced car sickness.
I remember clearly pulling into their driveway, the very steep hill, and feeling of relief that the nightmare journey may be coming to an end. Joern came down the steps to meet me. And then, he introduced himself. And me, well, I was about two seconds away from an embarassing scene, with a green tinge to my face, had just enough in me to ask if I could go to bed. Our famous meeting scene.
I slept at least 5 hours, and woke up well past dark. As I made my way out to the bathroom, I said, "hi" again to Joern in passing, as he could see the hallway from his desk. When I came out, instead of heading back to bed, I decided to go talk to Joern for a while. I remember how easy he was to talk with, and how comfortable I felt with Joern. Joern had a box of chocolates on his desk, the funny thing is that Joern still loves those chocolates, and whenever he buys a box, I always think about me in my flannel pj's talking to Joern about colleges in America. We talked a really long time that night, and looking back on it, Joern had me hooked from that moment.
This was to be the beginning of a magical week, as we traveled to Lichtenstein Castle, Lake Constance,and of course Venice. It turned into the most magical 10 years of my life. Life with Joern has brought the most incredible experiences, and the most incredible love. We've grown up together, which is such an amazing thought. When I think back on the two kids we were 10 years ago, I laugh. I was afraid that we'd run out of things to talk about. Joern wanted to move to America.
Well, we still haven't run out of things to talk about, and so, we're living in Germany. I can't imagine life any other way!
Happy 10 years Joern! I can't wait to see what our next 10 years bring!

Samstag, 24. April 2010

Crazy world

Last week, a volacano in Iceland errupted. Tons of volcanic ash spewed into the air, and the wind carried clouds of ash throughout Europe. The airspace in most of Europe was closed, with the fear that the ash could be dangerous to flights. With no way to fly, many families at school ended up separated for up to a week longer. My friend Mandy's mom and her mother-in-law were also stranded here. At my old school Patch, many, many teachers could not return from their spring break. Another friend's husband ended up driving from Sweden all the way to Italy. We weren't really effected. Well, until I realized that if anything were to happen at home, no matter what, I would not be able to get home. Then I realized that even though this is my home, I was stranded here. It wasn't such a good feeling. Flights started a few days ago, and it was such a relief. So nice to see the planes in the air, and know there is a way to get home if need-be.
Just as the air mess was straightening out, the only bridge in our town closed. Our town is split in half by the Neckar River. We live on one side, and my in-laws and the throughway are on the other side. It turns out that a few weeks ago, firemen doing a diving training excercise, discovered that some of the soil underneath the one support column under the bridge was shifting. On Thursday, divers were sent down again to inspect the bridge, and discovered that not only had the soil shifted extensively, but the column had also been washed away. Nothing was holding up the bridge! Obviously, it is now closed, and will most probably be closed for a really long time. The problem is that for us to leave our half of the town, we have to drive all over the place. My new morning drive now includes a country path, and driving two towns in the wrong direction to reach the other side of my town to get to the throughway. Oh the weirdness in the world!
Adding to things just not being right lately, my sister Ginia fell off of her scooter the other day. She broke her arm, and yesterday, she had to have surgery! She broke her arm in two places, and needed plates and screws installed. Poor thing!
On Friday morning, I got into my second car accident in Germany. This one was m We were my fault though, sadly. I was entering the throughway as I do every morning. The entrance ramp is tricky, and you usually have to look behind you to make sure that there is no traffic coming along. I looked back and saw that there was a very large space between the cars coming, and then turned to see the driver in front of me begin to roll, I looked behind again to check, and started to roll, then BOOM! Evidently, the guy in front of me stopped as I turned to check the traffic coming from behind. Oy! I hit a Volkswagen Golf, and well, it was pretty much destroyed. Fortunately, nobody was hurt, but the poor Volkswagen. As you can imagine, I felt absolutely horrible, and to add insult to injury, the extent of damage to my car was that my front license plate managed to jam itself into the Golf's bumper, and the license plate bracket broke. Because of the bridge being out, it took a long time for the police to show up, but I think that they didn't really hurry either- this was no emergency. By the time the police showed up, Joern and his parents had already arrived, and the driver of the Golf was feeling really bad for me and my non-stop tears. The police were actually really nice, and the quote of the day became, "it can happen to anyone." I will receive a warning and a 35 Euro fine. Overall, I know I was pretty lucky.
I can't believe how out of the ordinary the past few weeks have been. I am really looking forward to things returning to normal, but somehow, I feel like things won't really return to completely normal, until we've finished our house. That will be sometime next year!

Sonntag, 11. April 2010

Quick post, more later

Joern and I just got home from my friend Mandy's wedding. It was such a beautiful wedding, and Mandy and Doug are such a beautiful couple!
The past few days have been quite busy. Friday, was filled with shopping in Stuttgart. Then, I was able to meet up with Mandy, her other two bridesmaids, mom, mother-in-law, and a few friends for coffee and cake. On Friday night, they held a Friends and Family dinner in a brewery restaurant in Boeblingen.
Yesterday morning, I left the house at 8:30 am, for a morning of beauty.
The wedding took place at the Schloss Weitenburg, a beautiful castle.
The wedding was amazing, Mandy planned everything so wonderfully. Here's the best, sadly, picture I have with the whole wedding party:

Even though its blurry, you can see what a pretty color green our dresses were. They were from JCrew and were silk. The cut was surprisingly flattering, and were perfect for springtime. The bouquets were also incredibly beautiful,

They really popped against our green dresses.
The ceremony was beautiful and quite emotional. Mandy and Doug wrote the entire ceremony.
The reception was lots of fun, good food, beautiful cake, and lots of dancing.
This morning, we met up with a lot of the guests, and joined Doug and Mandy for a tour of Hohenzollern Castle, in Hechingen.