Friday, October 22, 2010


A couple little things I did. I'm no artist, but I like 'em.


i ended up changing these a bit (darkening the backdrop/butt, respectively)


me again

Wow, I haven't posted in so long, I can't believe 2010 is almost to an end. How about a quick update? I finished working as an Au Pair, came home for my sister's wedding in May (which was fun, beautiful, happy, and many more things). I got a job working with a state of CA (federally funded) grant program to improve K-12th grade teachers' certification, training, education(
I took a gamble and turned down my dream grad school (the monterey institute of international studies), even after they offered to increase my scholarship a couple thousand. I'm just not sure I can afford it given the loans I have from finishing my batchelor degrees. They said I have 2 more years to decide before I would have to reapply (aka, win the lottery- which means I guess I should start gambling, cause I've never bought a ticket)... We'll see. So I've been working, also working as a nanny for 3 kids (twins- now 3 1/2 months, one 23 month old), spending time with the family, and nieces and nephews. Also got certified to teach English, with a concentration in English Grammar (but don't judge my blog errors- I swear I can speak/write well, in fact, I was second in my class- yes there were more than 2 students)
So that about brings us to now- I'm working to save some money, and move back to Germany in the next few months to be with M. He got a new job working for the state of Saxony as a forrester (to be honest I don't know 100% what his job entails... other than running around in the woods, being manly, and wearing flannel ... all stereotypes... he actually has a degree in forrest engineering- not sure how that translates). The plan is to find work as a teacher (or nanny, housekeeper, translator, barwench... I'm open to options), and *finally* settle down (although I never will, it'd be nice to actually unpack all the way for the first time in... years). Did I mention I still have 2 half-packed suitcases at the bottom of my closet? winter clothes, i swear. it's pitiful really.
This weekend I'm taking my niece (3 1/2 already??!!) to a halloween festival, meeting friends at a tea house (sounds much classier than we are) and celebrating my nephew's 11 birthday. I know it's cliche, but they grow up so fast! That is perhaps the one regret I would have to traveling- but life is too short for regrets.
I leave you with this quote by Andrew Jackson, which relates to my procrastination of writing:
"There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is having lots to do and not doing it."

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Yesterday, being ash wednesday, signified the start of Lent (the 40 days of fasting before Easter... typically a Catholic celebration). Although I am not Catholic, I have decided to participate in Lent as a way to test my personal strength and to remind myself daily of my personal relationship with God. I will not be fasting, since I personally think denying your body of food sets it into "starvation, store, store, store calories mode" and I just like food too much. Instead, I have decided to really test my will power in my own healthy way; I am giving up all sweets and processed snacks (i.e. Chips... which I loooove), as well as the wine and/or beer I enjoy on the weekends with dinner or while watching soccer. Perhaps cutting things out will also help me to look my best for my sister's wedding at the end of May (which we are all soooo excited about), but that would be an added bonus rather than my primary motivation.

Everything here is pretty routine, as I wind down the last few months of being an Au Pair. At the end of Jan. we celebrated the bf's 29th birthday by going to a delicious Balkan restaurant, called Montenegro. We shared an appetizer and dessert and of course the main course was delicious too (i ended up taking most of mine home... where we enjoyed it for the lunch the next day). The family is working hard to find a new Au Pair, and the stress is picking up as the time winds down.

At the same time I am looking at Bridesmaid dresses and hair ideas for my sister's wedding, since I will only be home 2 short weeks before the big day. I think I will just order a few shortly before I fly home, and pick one and return the others once I am in the states.

On another completely random note, I found out yesterday that I have been accepted to the Monterey Institute of International Studies for Translation and Interpretation. This has pretty much been my dream since I found out acout the school while attending UC Davis. Now, however, that it is right under my nose, I feel there are so many decisions that have to be made about my future. The school itself is incredibly expensive (16,000 a semster), and without a scholarship being able to afford it seems impossible. (On that note, scholarship notifications have not been sent out yet). And I don't really want to add even more to the student loan debt I have left over from my undergrad days. In addition, the bf has applied to a year-long paid internship in his field in Germany for 2010-2011, so he is definitely staying here. He also desperately wants to break back into his field (forrest engineering) after two years of travelling the world and one year of desperate job searching, and asking him to delay that to live in CA for a year or two is selfish (unless he finds a matching job opportunity in the states). We could also do the "long distance" thing for two more years, but it seems like since the beginning of our relationship we have not been together more than 3 months, and now we only see each other 2 days a week... it's really trying and one longs for the monotony of cohabitation and eating dinner with each other every night and watching a film on the boob tube. The final problem, is that we would like to become financially stable and that's basically impossible as a student.... grrr.. then again, there are the future job opportunities that another degree could bring... Wow, no wonder my mind runs crazy when I try to sleep at night.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Wow, so welcome to 2010! It's a bit crazy for me, considering it seems like it was just yesterday that the whole "Y2K" scare was happening. So, it's been a while since my last post, and naturally I have quite a bit to update on.
I spent Christmas with the bf's family in southern Germany, but I had to work on the 23rd, so we ended up catching the train at 6 am on Christmas Eve. After an 8 hour trip (including a few delays and train switches) we made it to Trier. We spent Christmas Eve at his sister's house and spent a lot of time playing with his nephew (who will be 3 at the end of Jan). Then on Christmas we drove to his parent's house. I had a whole 11 days off, so we spent a lot of time visiting his grandparents and friends who also live in the south. We also had family game nights, where his parents and we played UNO, Activity (which is like Scategories I think.... pictionary + acting + describing?) and City, Country, River (Stadt, Land, Fluss? Where there's a random letter and then you have to write down things/places that start with that letter. I basically was losing horribly until they decided to let me write English or German words... then I kicked some serisou butt).

Since then, I've been back at work and just doing ordinary things. On the 19th, the bf and I celebrated our "18 month" anniversary (I know, such a thing doesn't really exist, but any excuse for a nice dinner and going out is nice). And this week I am taking a vacation day (so I have a 3 day weekend) as the bf has a friend visiting from Trier and we want to take him to Hamburg, and sightseeing a little. I feel a little guilty about taking another vacation day so soon after Christmas (especially since the little girl has a nasty cough), but my boss has assured me that it's o.k... so I will just focus on having fun. yay.

I've also pretty much resorted to only using the bf's camera, since my rechargable batteries have been slowly driving me crazy. That said, I haven't been making the effort to go back and get the pictures from said camera. I will do it... and then I will post some of the pictures.. Eventually. Really.

Oh, P.P.S. My sister got engaged over New Years... so I am super duper excited about the wedding in May (even though it means leaving Germany a month earlier than planned).

Thursday, December 3, 2009

random updates

It's (finally) beginning to look a lot like Christmas...... Well, by Cali-Standards, it's been "Christmas-y" for quite a while, prompting me to pull out the warm gloves, leggings, and boots. However, by Germany-standards it's practically Spring. So, we had our first frost (heavy-duty white coating that refused to melt in the sun) and I am now reduced to wearing leg-warmers under my jeans to mute the cold.

I finally finished my application for the Monterey Institute of International Studies, which I procrastinated through, and drew out a lot longer than probably necessary. I still managed to send it in by the 1st deadline (which is best when trying for a scholarship), although applications can be sent until May/June. I'm also looking at some universities here in Germany for Grad School, since tuition here costs 500 euro per semester, so it is inarguably more affordable than in the US.

On another note, I've decided to give up (processed) sugar until Christmas/Christmas Eve since sugar, cookies, cakes and everything are sooooo big in Germany. Then I can indulge a little over the holidays with the bf's family. I figure if I put it in writing then I will "have to" stick to it. lol. Since then I am "back on" coffee. Yum, from one vice to another.

Tomorrow the bf and I are going to the Christmas Market in NeuMunster (the next ok-sized city). I work on Saturday, so I get tomorrow off to go. :) There will be Gluwein (hot, red-wine based Holiday drink), warm soup and much more.... specifics? I don't know, because I've never been to a real Christmas Market, but I will report back on it after.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Happy Belated Thanksgiving Everyone. I hope you all had something to be thankful for. In lieu of a Thursday evening celebration (since I work during the week), the boyfriend I had a cozy Saturday Thanksgiving fest. We bought a 3.3 Lb (1.5 kg) chicken (from the local mom and pop, organic fed ranch), which we stuffed with homemade stuffing (first time I've ever attempted making my own stuffing) and it turned out wonderfully. We accompanied this with self-made mashed potatoes (sooooo much better than the box, or frozen sort), gravy and kale. Delicous. Photos to come, since they are on the bf's camera.

Friday, November 6, 2009

chimney sweep

Two blogs in one day... wow. Yesterday the chimney sweep came by. Actually, he was here the day before too, but only to ask if we needed his services and then to pencil us in. So, I found this exciting why? Cause I've never seen a chimney sweep.. well, other than in Mary Poppins. He was only like 25 or so, and pretty attractive, although it's kinda hard to tell under all the layers of grime. Mrs. A asked him how long it takes to get clean at the end of the day (we were all wondering), and he said a good 15 minutes of washing. wow. Anyhoo, the chimney is clean. And we should all have good luck, since it's said seeing a chimney sweep brings you luck (although other variations claim you must kiss him or throw soot over his shoulder).