You brighten my day..

Saturday, December 17, 2011

I'll be home....

I'll be home........oopsie,
We'll be home for Christmas...:-D

Even our bags say out loud that they will be home for CHRISTMAS.
I was so tempted to add a twig or two of pine leaves along with that red twine...
But then, apart from the stares from my fellow passengers, I didn't want to be explaining myself to the Indian authorities in the wee hours of Monday morning as to why was I bringing the little bit of German flora and fauna along with!!!!!

While I will be on a bloggy break for a while, I thought I will take the opportunity to wish you all my dear friends in advance

P.S: How do you mark your baggage while traveling? This was a piece of advice given by my dear MIL to tie them with ribbons so that they would be easily recognizable when they come out on the conveyor belt!! It should make our work much simpler, especially when we have not 1, not 2, not 3....but 8 bags rolling out!!!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


What is the best part about winter that you like? Apart from snow?

Well, I love lighting up our home with candles and t-lights. The soft glow from the lit candles not only give a cosy feel to the home, but also much needed warmth.
Christmas markets are one such place to find awesome t-light holders, like the one above. It's a small glass bowl with a hand painting of a typical winter's night in Germany. When it's lit, to me it looks real.  It feels as though there is somebody inside those buildings with a crackling fire inside...

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tuesdays around the world.

All that my house smells of is raisin and rum!!!

Back home in India, rich plum cakes were what we gifted to our near and dear ones. I have no idea as to how this tradition originated, but what I do remember is waiting eagerly with excitement to visit everybody with the beautifully wrapped cake in our hands. And yes, the cakes were specially baked by the bakers exclusively for Christmas as ovens were rarely found in homes for people to bake.

I toyed with the idea of gifting the Indian way to our friends of two years. It turned out that we had made quite a few...:-), hence I ended up baking round the clock!!!
For those interested in the recipe, head on over here.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sundays in my City

I hope everybody has had a lovely week. We have been experiencing the warmest Advent season and I have never been so happy. In exactly a weeks time we should be touching down in India. Yes, I will be home for Christmas!!! There are no words to describe the excitement we are going through and not to forget the countdown the kids are having. 
The kids have been busy with their christmas preparations in school. They know that I love everything hand made and when it is made with their own hands, I go giddy with joy and excitement. They love giving me little hints as to what they are making and when the day finally arrives, they bring their treasured pieces home. And like any mommy, I proudly display their work of art for all to see. 

P.S: The above nativity scene was hand sculpted by my daughter at school. Apparently Joseph was mixed up with another girl's and there was no way she could find the one she made. Once home, she begged me not to display cause this figurine looked funny to her. I had to convince her that they all looked great and that I was not willing to trade this for any other nativity scene. 

Unknown Mami

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Sankt Nikolaus Tag

Today, Sankt Nikolaus visits all the children in Germany. The kids are supposed to leave a clean shoe/boot outside the door. Depending on how well they have behaved the entire year, either candy(if good) or tree branches(if not) are left in their boot. 

Well, my kids got both...:D 
Lots of candy and lovely Weihnachtsplätzchen(christmas cookies) hanging from tree branches.
Thank you once again Karl and Rosemarie..:)

If you are an expat, have you embraced any of your host country's customs and traditions?
Has a friend or a neighbor helped you learn or understand any of them?
Want to know more about this day, head on over here.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Wanna know what am I feeling right now?? Terribly sleepy...I so want to crash into bed, but then, wanted to let you guys know what's been happening in my part of the world.
So, I am done with my German course. I had exams to answer, both written and verbal. I did spend a lot of time(though last minute) to prepare for the big day and I think I did pretty good. 

Today was my first day being home and the result.....a terribly exhausted woman. I think I packed in too many chores all at once, to add it to it, this season does call in for extra work..ain't I right??

Coming to the season, I think this has got to be the wettest Advent ever!!! Can you believe it has been raining cats and dogs over here. Imagine walking around Christmas markets with umbrellas in hand?? So not appealing!!!

What does appeal though is the aroma of the yummy lebkuchen and hot gluhwein wafting through the air!!!!  

So now, its's time my lovelies to bade you good night!! Bis morgen, which means "until tomorrow!!"

P.S: Pictures taken at the Würzburg Weihnachtsmarkt.

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..:)