You brighten my day..

Sunday, November 27, 2011

First sunday of Advent.

With the season of advent comes the german christmas markets. Something everybody looks forward to. We try to visit at least 3 to 4 markets every year. Though people say that all the markets look the same, to us there is something different in store in each one. While hubby and I love to sip on some gluhwein and home made liquor, we also love wandering and admiring stalls with plenty of craft and handwork. Its amazing to see the creativity of Germans and I cannot help but admire their finesse and talent for such fine art. Not to forget, we do end up taking an ornament home. 

And while we do the above, the kids do try to also look out to things that appeal to them. And this particular ladies stall caught their eye.

To those who do not know, this is bannock or simply campfire bread. One of the ways to prepare it is to cook it on a stick on a campfire.

While the fire not only cooked  bread, it also gave us the much needed warmth.

We did have a lovely time and not to forget, I was grateful too for there was no snow....:D 
Tomorrow I will share some more pictures of the Weihnachtsmarkt.

Unknown Mami

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Getting ready

Tomorrow mark's the beginning of the season of advent. A time to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ or Christmas. It's funny how each country celebrates Advent and Christmas in its own way. Over here, the preparations all over the village begin roughly 10 days before the first Sunday of advent. The Christmas trees are planted all around town, lights put up, window shops getting ready for the season and then all of a sudden, the quiet sleepy villages burst with light, warmth and color.  

German homes too prepare themselves equally. Advent wreaths are put up on doors, also the wreath with four candles each for the four sunday's of advent are made ready, lights around the homes are put up, Christmas t-lites are lit and not to forget the ovens baking german goodies round the clock. All this festive spirit makes up for the dark cold winter and gives you a feeling of warmth within.

When we moved three years ago I was baffled at how early everybody decorated. Not wanting to be left out, we too joined in the customs and am happy to say that this is our third year following everything to the T. I LOVE doing up our home for christmas and now LOVE doing it so early too...:-)

Time and again I have mentioned how i draw inspiration from window shopping...:D I hope shop owners do not realize that somebody is stealing their ideas and sue me!!!! 
A lot of shops around town have placed baubles in huge glass jars, so the idea's from there!!
And the floating t-lites in glass jars with fresh pine leaves and water, that's from PINTEREST
I just love the site so much, its making up for the lack of home keeping magazines I used to buy in India. The ideas are mind wobbling!!

This is how the sideboard leading to the living room looks like. Warm and cosy, lit up for the season of cheer.
How are you getting yourself ready for the upcoming season??

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

It's the most wonderful time of the year..

As it happens every year, I spotted these two guys last week from my kitchen window while fixing myself a quick breakfast.

I knew by the time I returned  home, the lights would be up..

and they were!!! Sunday marks the first Sunday of advent. The lights will then come on and will remain so till the first week of January.

As I write this, the Christmas trees too are up around the village and being decorated by little hands. My camera is on a short holiday in India, so we've got to wait till I get some shots of our lit up and decorated festive paradise sans snow..:D

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pin it!!

Husband says once my german classes end, I will miss them a lot. If only it were true...:D I cannot wait to get back to my former schedule......
Dates with my oven...

splash of creativity around my home...

Deck the halls for Christmas...:)

and last but not the least.....plan and dream about our annual family holiday for 2012 to...
either here,

or here.

I am finally pinning!!! Yeah!!!!!!!!!
It's an amazing place to be. And am beginning to wonder why on earth didn't I ever stumble on it before. Anyway, it's never too late!!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Count down...

I want to begin doing up our home for X'mas. From what I know, friends of mine have begun baking goodies too. I have gathered the baubles, begun looking out for fresh pine leaves, so many ideas on the web which catch my attention, but it all has to wait.

In exactly 2 weeks I will be answering my exams for the B1 level of the German language. I made up my mind to put in at least 2 hours of daily study apart from the nearly 6 hours of classes I attend everyday. I did succeed for a few days with the extra time, but then had to give in to the piles of laundry, messy home and dinner for the family.

I am no where close to speaking perfect german. The grammar has gone all over my head. The best I do is to translate word for word, english to german and voila, there I have my sentence. This does not mean I haven't learnt or benefitted anything at all. I am able to understand all the Deutsch announcements sent by the school to parents, also help the kids with their home work and attempt reading simple recipes too all with good success. That does make me feel good. But the exams, a different story all together. So while I am at it, to get into the festive mood, I placed these pretty poinsettias in a hand painted gold pot. I cannot wait to be a free bird, soon!!!!!  

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday's in my city.

Remember my post here where I said that I would be taking a german timbered building back home with me..:)

I like this one...

Husband likes this..

Between the two of us we will have to select one..:) Since our last time window shopping, a new collection has been added. Which one do you like??

Unknown Mami

Saturday, November 12, 2011

DIY Fall/Advent wreath

Are you the kind of person who buys material just because it's cheap for a craft project which you may or may not end up doing?? Well, I for one am that kind of person and most of the time, I do end up making what I have in mind. So, when I saw these balls of yarn a few months ago at a local supermarket for a euro each, I promptly bought not one, nor two but four for a future crochet project. In course of time, I realized that I could not crochet with this particular yarn(It said it was meant for knitting socks and I had failed to see it!!) So the yarn lay quietly in my basket until I saw these wreaths doing the round all over the net just before fall set in!!!

One blogger did mention that this DIY wreath is meant for a rainy day and after I began I understood why...:D This does take a lot of time and patience too.

I found the tutorial here and let my imagination do the rest.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Martin's Tag, 2011

Imagine my surprise when I stepped out of the house yesterday to buy a lantern for my daughter to take part in the Martin's tag procession which I thought was to be on 11.11.11!!!! Everybody were walking towards the spielplatz with LANTERNS!!! Luckily, my knowledge of little german came to my rescue..... 

Stopping a passerby I asked" ist heute Martin's tag??".
"Ja" came the reply.
 "Um wie veil Uhr?"
eeeeks,jetzt(now) I shrieked!!!!

So it was a mad dash with a lantern to a house with kids already snuggled warm in their house wear cosily in front of the TV. It was in record time that we dressed and ran to the ground all the while praying that the whole thing was not over!!!

Most of the kids had self made pretty lanterns...

In comparison to last year, the crowd was pretty huge this year and also I personally felt quite noisy. In 10 minutes my daughter felt so GROWN UP and declared this was not for her but for kindergarten children!!!

So debating whether to take part in the procession or not, they finally agreed to walk a portion and then head back home.

The houses on the streets where the procession walked were all lit up with t-lights in bottles.

So much for our eventful Martin's Tag!!!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

More timbered houses.

If anybody were to ask me what was one of the many things I liked about Germany, my answer would definitely be it's timbered houses. While I do regret for not being able to live in one, I am grateful for the fact that I do live in a beautiful medieval village which has rows of such houses.

Now the above picture is not of Lohr am Main, but the Römer Platz of Frankfurt am Main. Each time I have landed and taken off either by plane or train, I was always greeted by the ugly skyscrapers of the city. So, it did take me by surprise to see these rows of timbered buildings neatly tucked away a little further from the modern high-rises.
I intend on taking back to India one of these timbered houses all for me. To remind me of my once beautiful stay which will slowly then be only a memory. You may wonder how? I will reveal it to you...shortly..:)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tuesdays around the world

I know what some of you must be thinking. Has she nothing to blog about other than autumn foliage..?

I cannot help but post these breathtaking pictures.

This may have been our last autumn walk. Since then the leaves have slowly been falling to the ground.

I hate to think that I will have to look at bare branches sans foliage in a few days from now.

What does your part of the world look like?? Beautiful as mine? We would love for you to share it with us.
P.S: All pictures above were taken at the beautiful Hofgarten at Coburg.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Jingle bell rock..:)

In exactly 3 weeks, our little village will be all lit up for Christmas. The men from the municipality will go around town in small trucks with big ladders to string the lights. A row of them begin right outside my kitchen window that it's quite comforting to see them on a dark cold winter's night.

The picture above is from last year. You can see that we had our first snow fall during the last week of November. I have predicted that this year, we are not gonna see the white flakes till January..:) It's just a feeling and I know I am gonna be right.

The countdown to our magical christmas markets too have begun. Germany's Weinachtsmarkt are world famous for their gluhwein(hot spiced wine) and yummy gingerbreads and not to forget the many handmade decorations on sale.
As I begin my countdown, the christmas carols are softly playing on this cold autumn day in the warmth of my home. I know not if it's too early, but what I do know is that my heart is filled with joy and my spirits are definitely high...:)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunday's in my City

The kids and I were home for a week'a autumn vacation. Generally, I look forward to the school reopening, but not this time. For those who do not know, I have been attending full time classes for the past 6 months in an attempt to learn the Deutsch language. So, this means I too need to drag myself back to school tomorrow......:( 
If you do drop my home tomorrow morning, I will be like a little kiddo repeatedly muttering to myself..." I don't wanna go, I don't wanna go". And then hubby dear tries to make me feel better by saying.."You have come this far. Another month to go and then you are done!!" My man sure knows how to slowly encourage and motivate me to learn something new.

So much for my lessons. Coming back to what we did. Kids and museums, this combination can never go wrong during a holiday. I must admit that Germany does have many impressive museums. The museum of Natural History in Coburg was one where we accidentally stumbled into. A visit to the fortress coupled with an autumn walk was the plan when the museum came into view on our path. And then to pleads of "bitte, bitte" which means "please, please" we had to give in. I am glad we did. 

As much as I am not waiting for winter, it's funny how the wild boars in the fake snow excited me....:D!!!

To me, they all looked real, just like in the zoo. Only difference being these were up close!!
I love bears!! They remind me so much of Brother Bear..

Check out the otter with a fish underneath his paw watching out to see who is eyeing his meal. Impressive??

This lioness was a beauty. I also began to wonder whether these animals at some point were real?? What do you think? 

Unknown Mami