Monday, January 31, 2011

Pop Quiz


She took her first shower and wore her first "straight jacket"
otherwise known as a swaddler.

But don't worry Grandma's she only wore her straight jacket for a few hours before we decided it wasn't worth it and we should just stick with swaddling her.

So a big
goes out to our winner 
You're one smart mama!!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Perfect Sunday

This is what Jon and Alessandra look like during the perfect Sunday.  

What is the perfect Sunday you ask, well for us today it involved; sleeping in, "Jon's everything in the fridge miracle scramble", cuddling, book reading, laundry folding, movie watching, dish washing, napping, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, music listening, floor sweeping, dog walking, and computer playing/homework. 

I love my little ragamuffins!!

I'm sure dinner will be perfect too but we're not there quite yet.  
Good Night Everyone and I hope your Sunday
will be/is/was as perfect as our was today!!


Why we had to bring them.

They have been such a pain in the rear end but lets be honest 
how could we live without this cuteness? 

They've always been such cuddlebugs!

At the end of the day they may be rotten but it's our fault for spoiling them.
I love our little furry girls!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Pop Quiz

Alessandra had a first today.  Did she...

a. Roll from her back to her tummy.
b. Take a shower.
c. Wear a straight jacket.
d. b & c
e. None of the above - she's only 2 months.

Let me know what your guess is in the comments.
The first person who gets the right answer will get...
well you won't get anything except bragging rights.  
Can't wait to see what you think!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

She's Brilliant!!!

... and maybe I'm a little biased.

Let me set this up before you enjoy.  
Alessandra can't quite reach her toys unless she's lying right next to them.  
So how would a brilliant baby get them to wiggle and move?
Check it out!

Please forgive the singing - Alessandra loves it but she doesn't have much to compare it to.  :o)


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Uncle Simon

I do believe

it was

love at first


Monday, January 24, 2011

He's pretty wonderful!

I’m talking about my husband.

You see after my meltdown on Friday Jon took me to two different outings with English speakers.  I know, I know - how will I ever learn German if I don't hang out with German speakers, but these little outings were for making friends, not learning German.

Friday night Jon had a HHL get together.  He came home, picked us up, and took us to this beautiful building downtown.  I walked in to a room full of men in suites.  It took everything in me not to wallop him.  "I didn't know I needed to dress up" I said.  He just shrugged and said "I didn't know they would be so dressed up, but those guys aren’t from my class."  like somehow that made it all better.  Anyhow, I put Alessandra in her carrier and started to mingle with the few people I recognized as his classmates.  It was so much fun and so good to finally meet all the people Jon has been spending so much of his time with.  We did speak English all night but it still wasn't like being home by any means.  Jon's classmates, although mostly German, are from all over the world.  With that many different cultures represented in two small rooms it made the exchange a little more work than if we were in a room of just one nationality, but I loved it and I can’t wait to do it again.

On Saturday Jon had to go in to school which was such a bummer, but that night he picked us up and took us bowling with his HHL mentor, James, another former HHL student, Jay, and Nick (all Americans).  It was a blast; we bowled – German style – and had dinner.  I won the first game, beginners luck I'm sure, or maybe I’ve finally found my sport ;o).  It was awesome; the jokes were funny, the atmosphere was light, and I felt instant camaraderie.  Now, was it because it was just me, Alessandra, and the boys or was it because it was just a little bowling alley of Americans?  I'm not sure but none the less it was awesome.

So Jon gave me just what I was needing, a couple of nights out where I could just be me, make some new friends and not worry about how to say is this toilet paper or paper towel.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Saturday, January 22, 2011

My Mom's so Smart

She figured out how to make me like Tummy Time.

You see she put that adorable baby that I love talking to down on the floor with me.  We just started chatting away and the next thing I knew she was telling me how good I did and was flipping me over.  I had forgotten I was on my tummy I was so busy chatting.


Had a bad day...

It all started with a trip to the local market, think farmers market and a flea market together and then miniaturized.  I thought it was going to be awesome getting to spend the morning with Jon walking hand in hand to the market, picking out a few days worth of fruits and veggies while happily talking to the locals before we leisurely stroll home.  Well it didn't happen that way, we were stressed the dogs weren't behaving and we were running late.  While this wasn't ideal, this isn't what made me have a bad day but it did set me up to be way more sensitive for what was to come.

We got home and in our mail box was a letter from the landlord... 

Now before I go on let me give you a little background.  I have always felt like I wasn't good enough and when I say that I mean; smart, pretty, funny, tall, skinny, nice, assertive, popular - I could go on but I'll spare you.  Since the day Jon came into my life nearly 14 years ago, he's been working with me on these insecurities and while I feel like I've made HUGE strides this is still a tender spot.

...Jon opened the letter and began typing it into Google translator while I read over his shoulder.  When the words your wife popped up on the screen my heart sank and all my insecurities came flooding back.  They were complaining about me.  I started to cry. This transition has been really hard for me.  I don't know the language as well as I would like so I haven't been able to meet people and make friends as easily as I normally can and now this. My neighbors had been complaining to the landlord about me.  Jon of course told me it wasn't a big deal and to stop crying.  He asked me, like he has for so many years, why it was upsetting me so much.  I told him how hard this has been for me and how I don't have any friends here and he said just like he always has, "Don't get upset.  Stop worrying about what other people think.  Everything's going to be fine." 

The main complaint of the letter was about the girls - mostly Ripley - barking.  So Jon and I are taking all the steps we can to get them to stop and I have to say they must feel our urgency because as of right now, 9:00 P.M., Ripley has only barked once, well really barked - she did do this little I want to bark noise but I'm not counting that.  As for the complaint about me, I guess it's unacceptable to shake your rugs out the window - duly noted, I won't do it again.  So hopefully our mean neighbor will stop complaining and Jon won't get any more letters.

And fine it will be.  


Thursday, January 20, 2011

One more quickie

I thought you'd enjoy these pictures of Alessandra rockin' out with her rattle.

So cute!!!

Where did my day go?

Then I realize that I've...

nursed Alessandra four times.
My brand new Ikea chair - awesome!!

taken the girls outside.
Our backyard - the girls love it!

talked with my nice neighbor.
She's the second window down in the white building - with the plants.

taken a shower.
Best euro shower ever!!

done one and a half German lessons.
What I learned today - der Hund shwimmen/das Pferd shwimmen nicht

swept the floors.
Pretty gross huh -  that's only two days worth.

eaten two meals and two snacks
The last of Oma's soup - yum, yum!

 done a load of laundry.
Aren't Alessandra's cloth wipes so colorful :o)
taken the girls out again! 

And that was just until I got the skype from Jon to head over to Tamer's 
(our favorite hang out) for dinner.

Then when we got home we took the dogs out yet again, gave Alessandra a bath, skyped with our enfume's, caught up ever so slightly on emails and then nursed Alessandra one more time before tucking her into bed.

Wows a!!!   

I'm even more exhausted now that I've told you about it.
I guess I shouldn't give myself too hard of a time for not getting the grocery shopping done.

Good Night!!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I've got to learn German

About a week ago I was hustling around the house cleaning and taking care of my Sweet Pea when out of the blue the bell rang.  I thought it was the phone, you see here there are phones in the entryways that ring when someone is at the front door of the building needing to come in.  I nervously picked up the phone and said in my very best German accent "Hallo", I waited... there was no response.  Then a knock came from my front door.  I was so confused, how could someone be at my door, it had to be someone from the building.  I opened the door to find an irate 60 something women yelling, all the while shaking her finger at me and backing down the stairs.  The whole exchange happened so quickly I couldn't even say "ichferstehe nicht" (I don't understand).  And just like that she was back down stairs slamming her door shut.

Well shoot!
Welcome to Germany Charmian!?!

After that little run in, I thought "Man, I gotta learn German"  But it wasn't until today that I actually pulled out my German CD's and started my lessons again.

Every morning I take the girls outside to go potty and when I do there is a little old lady who watches us from her window.  She always has a huge smile on her face.  When I finally noticed her there I hollered up to her "guten Morgen!" (Good Morning) and I waved.  Well in the last couple of days she's really come out of her shell and this morning she was down right chatty.  I hated that she was being so nice to me and I wasn't able to understand a thing she was saying.

So that's it, enoughs enough, this girl is learning German.

...well as quickly as one can learn another language.

gute Nacht

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Sweet Pea is Two Months Old!!

You're two months old already?!?

I simply can't believe it.  
You have done so much in your little life.  
You already have a stamp in your passport.

You have ridden on trains, planes, and automobiles, not to mention trams, buses, and taxis.  
You already chatter up a storm and make friends just about as quickly as your Daddy can.

You love playing on your little play mat although you don't love tummy time.

You love to dance!
I'll pick you up and we'll twirl all around the room and you'll just look up at me and smile!

You also like it when your Daddy makes you dance at diaper changing time, he'll move your little body to whatever song he feels is most appropriate to sing to you.  

You've gotten used to the hustle and bustle of our new life so quickly.

You've taken all that we've thrown at you in stride with only a few meltdowns.

I'm not sure what parents consider sleeping through the night but already you give me 6 hours of uninterrupted slumber followed by another 4 on most nights.  

You nurse every 2 1/2 to 3 hours and your growing like a weed.

You are such a happy baby, in fact right now you are waking from your little cat nap that you took on your daddy's big leather chair and all I hear are coo's and giggles.

So with that I need to wrap up this post.

You've turned our world upside down and we could never have imagined how much better the view would be from here!
I love you so much Alessandra!  


Monday, January 17, 2011

Just playin'

Thought you would enjoy seeing some of the fun I was having today in my little play yard.

Yeah!  I love all my animals especially Larry the Pig!

Oh, tummy time, not my favorite but Mom says it's good for me.

I'm really working hard...

but I'm having so much fun!


Little Girls First Big Girl Bed

Alessandra finally got a crib and will be trying it out for the first time tonight - YEAH!!!


Keep your fingers and toes crossed that she transitions well.

City Dogs

Alessandra's second train ride happened sooner than we were expecting.  We were sitting in church at the Berliner Dome when Jon got a text.  The dog sitter locked himself out with the girls.  Jon told me he had to leave and I told him that didn't make any sense.  Why would he leave to take the train back to Leipzig to let the dog sitter in just to turn around and come back to Berlin to see Oma off.  The solution was simple.  I leave with Alessandra and go save the dog sitter and Jon stay behind and spend the day with his mom in Berlin.

We said our goodbyes and Alessandra and I got on the train.  Just a little while later we got off to see my two little girls in the train station.  I was so proud.  They weren't barking or nervous or anything.  They were jumping around with their tails a wagging generally glad to see me, but otherwise acting like happy little City Dogs!   

The girls with the "Dog Sitter"


Sunday, January 16, 2011