December 29, 2010

Cheers to Two Thousand Eleven

My plans for the new year are not resolutions because I’m really bad at sticking to those. And they’re usually something stupid like “lose thirty pounds by June” or “blog less often.” So, instead these are just… plans. Nothing more, nothing less, and, as always, very flexible given any unforeseen circumstances that may come up in between.

1. Travel a lot more while I’m still in Europe. Starting with London for NYE! On my list of places to see: Prague, Budapest, Berlin, Vienna, Paris (Valentine’s Day, maybe?!), Ireland, Scotland, Venice,  and Amsterdam. Nine places, six months. I wonder if I can do it!


2. Take a language course this spring. I haven’t done this yet and I really want to get a better handle on the German language. I don’t care if I’m never going to use German again in my real life, I want to do this for myself. I want to know things and be cultured!

2. Find a job in San Luis Obispo (because I’m living rent free with my mom. Thanks, mom!) that pays at least $12 an hour, has something to do with kids, and which gives me health benefits and full time hours, no weekends.

3. Continue budgeting for and paying off my major credit card and my dental bill. Only $2,300 to go on one and $1,400 on another!

4. Set aside a separate savings account for: student loan repayment (starting December 2011) and a down payment on an apartment in Monterey (or wherever life takes me). 

5. Save even more money so that I can go to Vegas for my 25th birthday. November 19-22 and then back home for Thanksgiving by that Thursday. I will do this one, I swear.


6. Budget for payments and insurance on the car that I will hopefully still have when I come home.

7. Spend a lot more time doing things with my mom that won’t make us crazy! Volunteer together at the SPCA, playing with, feeding, and cleaning up after the kitties. (It’s a surefire way to end up taking home a new baby kitty but hey… that wouldn’t be the WORST thing.) Go to the gym once or a twice a week with my mama, go on walks at the beach. Take her out to lunch once a week, really take advantage of mother-daughter dates. I’ve missed her a lot since coming here!


8. Keep up connections with all of my friends. Now that we’re all graduated and have moved on with our lives, we’re all in so many different places. Will work hard on keeping up with everyone and visiting friends as much as I can! This includes making time for Miss Lauren Plumb down in Los Angeles, my Munich au pair confidant!

9. Look into grad school programs and figure out if and when I want to move forward with the next phase of my education (and what I want to study). San Jose State is my first choice as it’s closest to the area where I want to end up. And this includes keeping my mind sharp for more school! Hit the books again!

10. Last but not least, take care of myself! With everything listed above I’ll be taking care of my life and all of my grown-up-responsibilities but on top of that, I want to do things for myself. This experience in Germany has taught me so much about taking every opportunity and about doing things for yourself that make you feel fulfilled. I want to do more of that before I get too old to appreciate it. Whether it be through learning how to cook through books or even classes  (I love cooking!), getting a gym membership and taking yoga or pilates classes, joining a local softball league, seriously detoxing on alcohol and partying for the sake of my health (and my budget!), spending more quality time with family and friends, traveling more often, and, if I really had my hearts desire, I’d love to start work on my first novel. I just want to take steps in the right direction towards a healthy, happy, hopeful Heather and without college in the way, I have more time to focus on bettering my present life and building for the future. That’s more important to me than anything else!

Oh, and just in time for the new year, I’d like to welcome to my California family, my mom’s new baby love, Ruby Tuesday. She’s so cute! There will be a lot of cuddling, puppy kisses, and long walks for this little lady once I’m home! Enjoy your new baby, ma!

RTRuby Tuesday, who could ever hang a name on you?

December 28, 2010

Lauren Devine!

Not only am I going to London TOMORROW but I’ve just realized that I get to see my best friend Lauren in less than a week! Besties from college, me and LD have been friends since we were 18, almost six years now! It’s going to be so nice to have a little bit of home here in Munich with me and I can’t wait to see her. Look forward to the millions of pictures that we’re going to have from this adventure! It’s going to be so hard to have her go when the week is up but I know I’ll get to see her this summer. Seriously, so excited for the next two weeks! 2011 is going to be awesome!

n83900390_30021523_5029Me and LD, freshmen year. Five years later, and it’s Germany!

December 27, 2010

My Soon-to-Be NYE English Vacation and My London Town New Years Resolutions

In two days, if the weather is cooperative, I will be going to London! The reality of this trip is starting to catch up with me and I’m getting more and more excited as the days go on, especially since I’ve spent the last three days alone. I’m ready for some excitement and to see some of my friends – damn, I was starting to forget that I had any. Haha. My flight leaves Munich at 10 o’clock on Wednesday night and I touch down at Gatwick around 11. I’m staying for five or so days with Fio and her family in Croydon and then she’s off to Belgium and I’m left to figure out what to do with my last few nights in London. And to find somewhere to stay. Ha. I guess I should have figured that out earlier but oh well! It’s all about the experience, right? The best part about this whole trip is that my best friend, Lauren, is going to be in England as well visiting her boyfriend and then she’s flying back to Munich with me on January 4th. It’s going to be a party if I ever saw one! So bring on the new year! I can take it!

My London Town New Years Resolutions


  1. Visit as many of the free museums as is possible, preferably the Natural History Museum, Science Museum, Horniman Museum, and the Tate Modern.

  2. Take pictures with the British Royal Guards (make him laugh!) and, if possible, watch the changing of the guard.

  3. Have fish and chips with English beer.

  4. Take pictures with all of the major London monuments: Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, the Tower of London, the London Bridge, a red London phone box, Big Ben, House of Parliament, West Minister Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, and Piccadilly Circus. Granted, some of these places might be the same thing? Damned if I know!

  5. Have a proper English breakfast.

  6. Get drunk in a REAL English pub. None of this Britannia Arms, London Bridge, Crown & Anchor, and Mucky Duck business (Monterey!). I want a proper pub!

  7. Watch the fireworks on New Year’s Eve.

  8. Eat Indian food with Fio.

  9. Ice skate at Somerset House.

  10. Meet a handsome British man (Jude Law, anyone?) and make him fall in love with me.

December 25, 2010

A Little Christmas Gift From Me To You

Christmas morning has arrived and here I sit in Germany, alone and somewhat blue about it. I did have a worthy Christmas Eve celebration with some good friends. I tried a new recipe – salmon fillets baked in brown sugar and lemon – and it was delicious. I really hit it out of the park with that one and I’m pretty certain that next summer, my mom and her boyfriend are definitely going to reap the benefits of my newfound love for kitchen domesticity. I also made mashed potatoes, sautéed some zucchini (always good!), and Candice, bless her heart, brought corn and Pillsbury biscuits.  My friend Moxin (aka JOKER!) brought this Chinese dessert, I don’t even know what it’s called, but it looked like little rabbits and tasted like amazingness. Not a very good description but believe me, it was good! The night was a success, my friends, especially because I managed to drink an entire bottle of Riesling all by myself. Also, about three inches of snow dumped over Munich yesterday so dreams of a white Christmas definitely came true.

DSCN3053Delicious salmon!

DSCN3059We did good!

DSCN3061Candice and I about to enjoy our delicious Crimbo (thanks, Risha!) meal


Now, without any real plans for the day, I hope to do laundry, eat left overs, go see Little Fockers by myself, and then have a phone/Skype date with my family members. It’s definitely not how I expected to spend Christmas this year but I’ll take it. I’m in Germany, after all! So, Merry Christmas to you! And now, I have a present for you. Please enjoy!

Merry Christmas, friends and loved ones!

December 24, 2010

Happy Christmas Eve!


Christmas Lights 2007004_edited

My favorite Christmas tradition and one of the best memories that I have comes from the days when my best friend Sarah and I would go all over our little western Montana town and look at Christmas lights until we couldn’t feel our fingers or our toes. I miss sitting in her living room, watching the Christmas tree fall over. I miss helping her sneak peaks at all of her presents and then helping her tape them back together. I miss the Christmases spent at my grandmas house with my family – cousins, aunts, and uncles, so much food you couldn’t even imagine eating all of it, games around grandma’s dining room table, a circle of family with presents piled high and we took turns opening them, warmed by the love of family. I miss waking my mom up at 5 am on Christmas morning because my brother and I couldn’t wait any longer. I miss Chinese food and movie theaters on Christmas night because we had dinner the night before and nothing else was open. I miss the smell of turkey at 10 in the morning. I miss my step-dads home made French éclairs. I miss Christmas in the dorm rooms – Secret Santa’s and miniature Christmas trees, blasting Christmas music, paper snowflakes hanging in the hallway, and peppermint hot chocolate at Starbucks. I miss my step-mom’s sugar cookies and her sticky buns on Christmas morning. I miss wrapping paper all over the floor, cats climbing the Christmas tree. This year I just miss Christmas at home, Christmas with my family and the ones that I love. I will be thinking of you while I’m far away from home and missing you every second. Merry Christmas to you… yes, especially you… and enjoy your family this holiday!

December 23, 2010

I’m a Guest Blogger!

It’s official – I’ve written for someone else’s blog! That’s when you know you’ve made it as a blogger, isn’t it? When someone else wants you on their blog you must be pretty cool and popular, right? Ha. I’m really happy to be hosted on this particular blog because, as a super cool and nerdy lover of books, this blog is right up my alley. It’s called Fantasy Casting and it is a blog solely dedicated to the casting of books that have never been made into movies. I love, love, love the idea and I’m so glad that Gina came up with it and did something about it because it’s super addicting if you’re really into books and imagining the cast. Anyway… end super nerdy book worm paragraph here!

Check out Fantasy Casting and my cast of Judy Blume’s, Summer Sisters, one of the greatest chick lit books of all time (in my opinion, anyway). They’ll be two more parts to this cast so I’ll pop up a few more times and if I’m lucky, Gina will let me come back for other projects every once in a while. Until then, enjoy my present guest appearance!


Au Pair Recommended Recipes: How to Make the Perfect Mac & Cheese Dinner

Have I ever mentioned how much my girls love macaroni and cheese? Of course, they do. How could they not? If you don’t like mac & cheese then obviously there is something wrong with you. I introduced mac & cheese to them over the summer and they’ve been hooked ever since. At least once a week they ask me if I’m going to visit Kathe to get more “macaroni mit cheese.” Well, I discovered that they sell it at the Karstadt on Munchner Freiheit at 2,50 EUR a pop (which is almost like $3 a box, RIDICULOUS!) The Frau bought some yesterday, apparently she stumbled upon it, and by the end of dinner time we had eaten four boxes of macaroni and cheese between the five of us. The girls had a friend over and she loved it too. Score!

The secret to making really good mac and cheese is to not follow the directions. I stopped following the directions when I was 14 and realized that it always tastes better when made with intuition. The key is to use less milk and to make it taste even cheesier. If it’s too “chunky” (aka, there’s too much powder) then just add milk until you get it to the consistency that you like. Also, be liberal with the butter but mix it in before you put in the milk or cheese. Really grease those noodles, baby. This is how you make really good mac & cheese. None of this 1/4 cup milk crap! Don’t follow the directions!

Also, to make it an even better evening – throw in some cut up wurstl (or hot dogs or wieners, whatever you call them), preferably cooked, and you’ve got the best made meal from your (or maybe just my) childhood. Also, peas make a good flavor additive, too, although I would do this sparingly and maybe just as a side dish. And if you’re into it (I know my dad likes this) you can put ketchup in your mac & cheese. I hear it’s tasty (although I hate ketchup so I’ll take your word for it). Also, my dad makes this mac & cheese, tuna, and corn mixture… but I won’t go there. Not a big fan. But hey, dad… I think of you everytime I see a box of mac & cheese and a can of tuna on the same shelf.

Anyway, that’s a simple way to really, really enjoy a box of mac & cheese. Enjoy!

December 21, 2010

Six Months In: A Proper Update of The Experience Thus Far

I have officially been in Germany for six months. I am halfway finished with this crazy adventure and it’s hard to believe that there’s still half of the experience left to explore. It feels like it’s all gone by so fast and before I can even comprehend what has transpired, I feel like it will be all over and I’ll be on that 10 AM flight back to California. The last six months of my life have been incredible and I wouldn’t trade this experience for any other. I hope that the next six months will be just as amazing.

I sometimes find myself thinking back on my first few days here, and even the days before arriving in Munich, and it feels so far away. It was all so surreal – I couldn’t believe that I had actually done it or that any of it was even real. As long as I’d been alive, I’d never saw myself as the girl who got to go to Europe to live this big fancy adventure in a foreign place. I always believed that my life was average, mediocre, uneventful. It turns out that your life will be this way if you don’t do something to change it. When I was 17, I was that girl who thought she wasn’t smart enough to go to college but then I took a chance and tried and six years later, I graduated cum laude from a four year university. This decision worked the same way. I thought I was just going to be another college graduate, out there swimming in a sea of indecision, but I thought, “You know what? Not yet.” And I did something about it. I researched, I followed through, I paid attention. And now, I’m here, living one of the greatest adventures of my life.

December 20, 2010

Leaving Things, London Dreams, the Christmas Blues, and Melting Snow

I’d like to say that there hasn’t been much going on here in Munich but that would be a lie. I just feel bad that I’ve haven’t been keeping track and for blogging purposes that kind of sucks. So, I’m going to try to do my best to remember.

Mostly, time has just been filled with goodbyes and farewells as my two favorite Americans in Munich have gone away from here. Jessica returned to the US on Wednesday and I made sure to get her to the S-Bahn that morning. I helped her pull her suitcases through the snow (and then broke it, oops) and then sat with her in the freezing cold morning, waiting for the train. With the simple open and close of a door, she was gone but I hope to see her in Munich again this coming spring. Lauren finished her au pair contract this week (lucky!) and then jetted up north to Ulm to stay with her ever so lovely significant other, the handsome Sebastian, and so even though she’s not really gone, she kind of is. Which is sad but we sent her off in style. We got her drunk at karaoke and then on Friday, I professed my undying love to her over a myriad of drinks and all was well. She was truly my knight in shining armor that night and I will miss her from afar. At least until we reunite in Los Angeles this summer.

Now, it seems, that I am the only American left in my little group of friends and there’s every chance that I may now become one hundred percent British without my fellow Americans here to intervene. I’ve started saying things like “I can’t be bothered” and every once in a while, my sentences come out sounding posh and slightly reminiscent of a Harry Potter character, usually Hermione. Not that I mind, I would love to be British! But it’s all in good time because…



If you know me at all, you will know that this has been a dream of mine since I was 15 years old and fell in love with the country. I think my English pen pal or maybe my obsession with Harry Potter might have instilled this hope inside of me but ever since, I’ve been dreaming of England. The summer that I worked at Camp Cayuga, the farewell dinner closed with staff-made awards and I was bestowed with the honor of the “Meant to be English” award. Therefore, I look forward to this trip seeing as I’ve never happier to go anywhere. Sure, I don’t have any money (not a significant travel amount, anyway) and my flight may or may not be delayed and/or canceled but I am stoked anyway. England, here I come! I’m staying with my friend Fionnuala and she’s going to show me the best of London. I’ve requested 90% free, 10% cheap. Hopefully this plan works out well!

In three days my host-family leaves for Austria and then I am to spend a lonely Christmas here in Munich. There are a few near and dear ones staying in the city but there aren’t many of us. I’m going to have a dinner at the house on the 24th but, so far, it’s not looking very promising. Just one or two, maybe even three of us, eating who knows what and getting drunk off of gluhwein. Does that sound like a party or what? I’m actually a bit excited to do a whole lot of nothing. I’m a pretty lazy person and it will be really nice to have absolutely nothing on my agenda for a week. A whole lot of sleeping in, reading, blogging, movie watching, city exploring (it never gets old!), photographing, and, oh yeah, did I mention sleeping in?

The snow that has been blanketing Munich for the last few weeks has finally started to melt away today. The weather must have changed, the temperatures warmed or something, because it all started disappearing last night. Now that it’s been raining, the snow has turned into slush and ice, and is slowly dissipating from the city. I was hoping for a white Christmas but maybe not this year. I was also hoping for family too but that won’t be happening. What a weird Christmas. Hopefully I survive!

Oh… and did I mention? I’ve been here six months now. It’s halfway over…

December 15, 2010

Christkindlmarkt Overload, Crowded Trains, Jessica’s Leaving Weekend and the Last Maß Celebration, Snowman Fail, and a Shamrocks Styled Send Off

Sadly, this weekend marked the last of my friend Jessica’s time here in Munich. Jessica has been one of my my closest friends since arriving here in Munich and I would not have survived the culture shock and transition periods if she hadn’t been here, guiding me through the language and explaining things to me that I didn’t understand. She took me to the hospital at 3 in the morning when I sliced my foot open. She’s spent many a sleepless night with me, enjoying the Munich night life and running wild in the streets of this crazy German city. I was so blessed to be able to spend the whole weekend with her and have all of the time that I needed to spend with her before she left Munich to go back to Arkansas. That girl has my heart and I will never, ever forget the part she’s played in my life. That will always be with me when I think of my time in Munich!

The beginning of my weekend with Jess started with a Saturday trip to the Nürnberg (Nuremberg) for the Weihnachtsmarkt. It had been planned for a while so all we needed to do was just get everybody together and go. Only about 7 of us ended up going and that’s mostly because we chose to take the 9 A.M. train. Which was crowded, as usual. We got seats eventually and kept moving around until we were mostly together and arrived in Nürnberg around 11:30 ish. The weather was horrible and for most of the day we walked around in wet snow, slush, and rain and the freezing cold. The markets were wonderful, as usual, but not much different from those in Munich or anywhere else, really. It’s all for the experience, to be honest, and I had a wonderful day meeting new friends, wandering around a new city, and enjoying every minute of the day.

DSCN2478Vigil kept inside the St. Lorenz Kirche
   DSCN2489 DSCN2516DSCN2538 Nürnberg from the top of the Sinwellturm

DSCN2539Imperial castle and not part of King Ludwig’s castle craze apparently

DSCN2566DSCN2579 Me, Joker, and Jess and our customary cup of Glühwein

DSCN2591DSCN2594 I don’t know why but this guy in the center  just  made my shot super creepy

After we’d had enough of freezing cold feet and Christmas market crap, we jumped on the 5 o’clock train back to Munich. It was so crowded that most of us had to sit on the floor in the back of the train car. Half of the ride was spent being huddled underneath lederhosen clad Bavarian men and their beers. We made it home around 7 and all separated to get ready for a friends house warming party. Which was, as usual, a wild night. We stayed and Fabrice and Andre’s swanky new apartment until 4:30 in the morning before we trekked back to the train station in the cold, cold, cold morning air and then we all wandered back to Motorstrasse where I stayed the night with Jessica and the two of us stayed warm, cuddled up in her bed. :)

On Sunday, Jessica and I wandered into the English Gardens to check out the Christmasmarkt at the Chinese Tower. It was, as usual, jam packed with tourists and locals alike but it was cute and quaint, probably my favorite of the markets thus far.

DSCN2655Dashing through the snow…. in a two horse open sleigh…

DSCN2665St. Nicholas (but where’s his book of sins?!)

DSCN2671Lebekuchen (German gingerbread)

After the market, Jessica and I had dinner in town and ate at this delicious pizza/Italian restaurant called L’Osteria. The pizzas are HUGE and only about 8 EUR for the massive thing. We got half-pizzas instead and even still I couldn’t finish it. They were amazing though! After dinner Jess and I met our friend Daniel at our favorite spot – Jaegers Youth Hostel – so that Jessica could enjoy her last Maß in Munich. It turned into a ridiculously crazy, dramatic, over the top kind of night but that’s just how Jess and I like it to be. I had so much fun – even if the night didn’t end up so nice for me (stupid boy!) – and Jessica and I made it home to my bed where we slept for all of three hours. Haha. Great end to the weekend if you ask me!

DSCN2677    DSCN2705 Me & Jess

DSCN2708Jessica’s last Maß!

This deserves a minor mention but on Monday I tried to make a snowman with Vee and it was an epic fail. The snow that’s been blanketing Munich for the last three weeks is too powdery for snow man making so we ended up just making a huge pile of snow in the side of the yard. But we did try!

DSCN2747Sledding fail.

DSCN2740River behind the house – fading sunset in the snow. 

On Tuesday night Jessica had her leaving party and, unfortunately, I was babysitting so I missed most of it. I made it to the end, once everyone had convened at Shamrock’s for karoeke and I rolled into the bar around 11:20 pm. I managed two beers and a whole of drunk-friend babysitting but it was good to spend even a little bit of Jess’s last night with her. She had so much fun and you could feel how hard it was for her to leave. We’re definitely going to miss her around here!

38164_523832763620_83900390_31027509_4648159_nI’m going to miss you, girl! See you soon!

December 13, 2010

Saint Nicholas and His Book of Sins, Moulin Rouge and an Elephant Love Medley, Karaoke Nights, Munich’s Incessant Snowfall, and Boring Student Loan Crap

Monday, December 6th

Today is a holiday here in Germany. Happy St. Nicholas day! Apparently, St. Nicholas is the patron saint of children. I never knew that! On the eve of December 6th, he goes around to all of the houses with a book of sins and if the kids have been good, he leaves them goodies – if they’ve been bad, they get twigs. But no one really leaves twigs because that would just be mean. Instead, kids (and au pairs!) all over Germany wake up to a plate (or boot) full of candy, nuts, oranges, and other goodies. Which was not so good for me because I heard the girls awake and downstairs at 6:35 am – ten minutes before I was even supposed to be down the and almost a half an hour before they usually wake up. But I guess it was all okay because I got some goodies myself – they were on the stairs when I came home from my trip to Chiemsee.

DSCN2378Where’s a nutcracker when you need one?

Monday was an altogether unproductive day. But what else is new? It rained all day and let’s face it, nobody wants to go out in that. Especially when there’s still snow outside which has most likely turned into ice and that’s not a good combination. I did finish season 5 of Desperate Housewives though. Too bad I already know who Mike marries. I organized and cleaned my room – put my summer clothes into my suitcase and stashed it away. Washed my bras. Haha. Organized my desk and found all of my unwritten postcards that still need to be sent out into the world.I have a postcard from Starnberger See that I still haven’t sent out and I went there in June. Geez! I didn’t really have much on my agenda today, otherwise.

The girls returned around 4 and I helped with their homework – math and reading. I made dinner around 6 – ravioli with salmon and sautéed zucchini. After dinner I got them ready for bed which is always an orchestrated event. They don’t go down quietly and they always seem to be at their silliest right after they’re in their beds. I read them some Christmas books and tried to get them to settle down but Vee just kept trying to ask me question in German and laughing when I couldn’t answer them. Silly girls. I really need to get into a language course.

After the girls were down, I settled in for the night with Moulin Rouge (which only reminded me of the time that Harry and I busted out the entire Elephant Love Medley at the Seehaus biergarden back in September and embarrassed all of our friends).

Tuesday, December 7th

I should have written it down earlier because now I can’t remember what I did on Tuesday. Obviously nothing important. What I do know is that I made calls to all of my student loan lenders and got the applications for my deferments. Economic hardship for the win!

In the evening I ventured out to Shamrocks to meet my friends for karaoke. Which is always a good time. I chose not to drink that night and bought a Coke instead but in the end, I think Nathan felt bad for me that I was surrounded by ridiculously loud and obnoxious drunk people so he bought me a beer. Cheers, mate!

DSCN2402Benji, Laura, Bria, Helen, Catherine, and Fio

DSCN2423Catherine and I singing “Naive” by The Kooks  

Wednesday, December 8th

Lauren came by in the morning to visit me, I can’t remember what for, I think just to hang out, and she stayed for an hour or so. We gossiped and gabbed and then she left again and I ventured out into the city to see Jess. It was strangely warm and so most of the snow melted and had pretty much all the way disappeared by late afternoon. Jess and I worked on our loan deferments together at the coffee shop and then I headed home to ready myself for the evening. The girls were at their grandparents for most of Wednesday evening so I didn’t have to work and was able to go out early with some friends. We started at Marienplatz and worked our way down Leopoldstrasse until we ended up at Peaches where we had a Super Zombie and stole some free popcorn for the UBahn ride to our favorite hostel bars. I stayed up waaaaaaay past my bedtime but had a good time playing pool with friends and drinking delicious German brew.

zombieMe, Jess, and Wing and our Super Zombie

Thursday, December 9th

The snow came back overnight and it was cold outside but the sun was out for most of the morning. By the time I headed to the girls school to pick them up for their recorder lessons, it was freezing outside. I had to walk most of the way to get to the school and then we had to walk to the building where they have their lessons. And while one twin did her lesson, the other came with me. Vee didn’t want to go sit in a warm cafe so we stayed outside and took pictures of the snow. Crazy kid. We were frozen! On our way back to switch twins, we came across a little Chihuahua mix dog who was lost and was shivering cold and frozen. He had a doggie sweater on but my heart broke for the poor little guy. He wouldn’t come to me so I couldn't’ do anything for him but I just wanted to hug him and make him warm again. I hope he found his mama!


DSCN2427DSCN2444Let it snow…

DSCN2455The  snow outside the house

I had to babysit the girls that night and right before their mom left for the art gallery she was going to, the poor kids really did me in. They were super, extra bratty and weren’t listening to me at all. They were taking their baths but Eenie had the shower and Vee had the tub. Vee wanted the shower but I told her that she didn’t need to use both of them and that she could have the shower the next time. Of course, she doesn’t like to hear the word no so she started whining at Eenie to hurry up and finish so they could ‘switch.’ I told her to stop but she kept doing it. I kept telling her to stop and so then she started crying for her mom. Who wasn’t responding because she was the shower somewhere else in the house. Eventually Vee started screaming and yelling for her mom and I told her to knock it off about ten times before she just started hysterically crying. I told both of them that they needed to get out of the shower/tub but neither of them would listen to me. Vee just cried and screamed for her mom and Eenie just told me, “No. I do it with mommy.” So I just let the water out of Vee’s bath and asked her to get one more time but she stayed in and cried until her mom was finally able to respond. Then her mom yelled right back at her and the whole ordeal sounded extremely more dramatic in German. It was ridiculous. Then they were both crying as they got dressed and dried their hair. These children are insufferable sometimes. Jeez. Fortunately, it gave them a bit of a head start on bedtime because they wore themselves out. They were asleep by 7:15 and personally, I think these kids oversleep. They get about 12 hours of sleep every night. I really wish I’d retained anything that I learned in my child development classes. Ha.

Friday, December 10th

Another slow day, which is fine with me seeing as a blizzard is pretty much on its way through Munich. Snow, snow, snow. It’s ridiculous. I’m over it already. Sigh. I spent the morning catching up on blogs, cleaning, and my student loan deferment applications. I just have to write up a letter of my economic hardship status and then send them off (hopefully by fax) and I will be done! Loan payments deferred. Hopefully. The whole process has been kind of annoying. Necessary, of course, but still annoying. I have three different loan companies to answer to so I had to do the same thing three different ways. One of the companies allowed me to fax the information over but for the other two, I needed to send them by mail. I had to make copies of my au pair contract and write a letter describing my work load, contract hours, and income source and hope that they believe all of this, because, to be honest, saying that I work for a private employer and that I get paid cash in hand sounds kind of shady. So, cross your fingers and wish me luck! And because my life is so interesting… I took a picture of even the most minute detail.

DSCN2459Taking care of business!

I took all of this business to the post office near Munchner Freiheit and of course, something had to be wrong with it. German post is so weird. The envelopes that you use have to be a certain size or your letters cost 6 EUR or more to send. I wanted to send my applications in straight, simple letter sized envelopes (as pictured) but I didn’t want to spend 12 EUR to do that. So I had to go to the retail section, pick out envelopes that are the right size – about the size of a greeting card – and open the package, fold my applications into a fat, bunch of ugliness – stuff them into the tiny little envelopes and then bring them to the postal worker for send off. Between the two letters and the package of envelopes, I paid 7 EUR. Which is still saving me 5 EUR for something else later on. Hopefully ACS and the Department of Education don’t mind the bad packaging. I’ll blame it on the Germans this time.

Back at home, I made chocolate chip cookies for the girls and waited for them to come home from their Christmas music performance. I had wanted to go but didn’t come back from the post office in time. The rest of the evening was spent with the kids – the Frau went out again that evening. Eenie, Vee, and I watched Peter Pan and ate cookies and I put them to bed just before nine. My Friday night was spent perusing Facebook, stalking blogs, and reading. I am, essentially, the most interesting person on the face of the Earth. Officially. ;)

December 5, 2010

Hans im Glück Burger Grill, Mini Pizzas and Old Fashioned Cartoons, and A Last Minute Trip to the Chiemsee Weihnachtmarkt

Saturday, December 4th

I had a somewhat uneventful Saturday. Unless you count being entertained by your hungover, probably still drunk, and somewhat irritable Irish friend eventful. Then I had a very eventful Saturday! Haha. I kept the poor girl company while she moaned and groaned about the previous nights imbibing. We both had the hots for cheeseburgers so we found a new restaurant and ventured in that direction and were delighted to find that it was worth every penny. And the restaurant itself was really cool, great design!

DSCN2184 I had the avocado burger. You know me. I love me some avocados!

DSCN2186Loved the trees on all the tables!


After lunch, Fio returned home to sleep off the rest of her hangover and I attempted to enjoy the Christkindlmarkt but I found that it was not fun and would definitely not be enjoyed. There were a million people walking in every which direction, pushing and being touristy and rude. I wasn’t down for that – I hate crowds – and so I just got on the train and went home. The markets will be better enjoyed on Wednesday mornings.  I was supposed to meet up with Jessica this day to make snowmen in the English Gardens (cool, I know!) but the girl is ridiculous when it comes to making plans and getting in contact with her. Haha. To make matters worse, she lost her phone and so I couldn’t get a hold of her. Instead of showing up at my house at 12 like we’d planned the night before, she came at 3 pm, while I was across town eating lunch with Fio. Silly Jessica. We tried to meet up with her again but lost her in the hustle and bustle of Marienplatz and that was the end of our attempts. Crazy girl!

Once I arrived home I had a few hours to spare before I had to babysit die kinder but, like always, I didn’t do much with my spare time. I chatted with a new friend, did some blogging (do I really even have any other hobbies?), and watched more Desperate Housewives. (You’d think that I would eventually run out of episodes to watch, wouldn’t you? Good thing there is still an entire season left for me to catch up on.) Around 8 I went downstairs to look after the girls as their parents went out to dinner. We made mini pizzas and stayed up late (for them, anyway) watching old cartoons. They passed out and were asleep by 9:15.

DSCN2200Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf, the big bad wolf? 

While all of my friends went out on the town again, I stayed in (for work purposes, of course) but it’s always nice to have a good excuse to stay in every once in a while. Money flies - I am horrible at saving (especially when a 44 EUR train ticket and 15 EUR phone credit take up a good chunk of it). When I was back in California, I was working three jobs and had enough money to get by, pay my rent, cover the bills, gas up my Stratus, and still entertain myself. It’s really hard to come down from those habits and I’m learning that the hard way with every pay period.

Sunday, December 5th

Originally I’d planned to go on the Erasmus trip to Nürnberg with Eric and Helen but Helen bailed on me and I figured that Eric could use a little trip without me. Ha. Last time we were attached at the hip - I’ll give the boy some space. Since a few of my friends were planning a trip to the Chiemsee Weihnachtsmarkt on the same day, I decided to go there with them instead and would save Nürnberg for the following weekend. Chiemsee is south of Munich, accessed by the train, and located on a little island. Incredibly quaint and absolutely adorable.

We took the Deutsche Bahn (trains) like we always do when we travel Bavaria and used a Bayern ticket which is 28 EUR for up to 5 people to share. I get to the central station (Hauptbahnhof) and run into Jess and Kymbat just before we met up with the others and was told that I would be able to jump onto someone’s Bayern ticket. But after we meet up with everyone and get on the train, we discover that  we have 17 people and 3 tickets – enough for 15 people. So myself and another girl would have to get our own Bayern ticket but pay 14 EUR each for it. Instead of the 5 something EUR paid by everyone else. So that sucked! They didn’t actually check it on the train ride there but we bought the ticket anyway once we arrived in Chiemsee and then had to pay another 9 EUR for the round trip travel ticket for the bus and the ferry out to the island. So there went an unexpected 23 EUR. But then Jess bought me a 3,50 EUR bratwurst mit semmel lunch so I guess I couldn’t complain too much. In the end, we split it up anyway and everyone gave us an extra Euro or two until it was all even.

Our trip to Chiemsee was ultimately a success. I didn’t even know what I was in for, seeing as it was such a last minute trip for me, but it turned out to be a good choice. We went to see one of King Ludwig’s castles (he has so many!), the Herrenchiemsee, and to get there we had to take a hike on this little wooded path and it was so pretty and serene. Jessica and I made it even more fun by using the soles of our shoes as ice skates until I fell on my ass on the cold, hard snow packed ground. But it was funny and I didn’t land on my camera so all is well! When we got to the castle we immediately started a giant snowball fight which was fun because I’ve been wanting to do it since it started snowing. I definitely lost but we got the boys a few good ones, don’t worry!

DSCN2214 Yours, truly.

DSCN2239 Jessica and Kymbat on the way to Herrenchiemsee


The island that this castle is located on is different from the island where the Weihnachtmarkt is located. That’s because the two islands are meant for men - “herren” or gentleman’s island – and women - “frauen” or the lady’s island.  There is also a nunnery on the lady’s island and the markets are known as the Frauenchiemsee Christkindlmarkts. Interesting little fact for you about the Chiemsee islands. :)

While at the Weihnachtmarkts (aka Christkindlmarkt) we drank the customary mulled wine (aka glühwein), ate pommes frites (which were surprisingly, hard to find), spent at least 10 minutes every half an hour trying to get our group together, took a million and a half pictures, and enjoyed new friends, warm clothes, and good German culture.


157034_466340874146_676989146_5763523_7617382_nMost of the group, at the see side.
(Thanks, Ana for the picture!) 

DSCN2340We found a fire!

DSCN2364  DSCN2371