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Monday, September 14, 2009

The beach is outside my door!

Hi everyone!

I managed to pack the suitcases. 2 for desi. 2 for me. 2 for maik.

We got up at 4:00 am. yes it was still dark. no desi did not want to wake.

We got on a plane.

We flew.

We were awake for over 24 hours.

The beach is now outside my door!


Getting here took a lot in my opinion. I do not like Air France. I like them even less when i have to go through paris and/or Atlanta. Most everything went alright, but i was very sick in the airplane. I have severe motion sickness. i know most people (my husband included) do not believe it can be that bad, but it is. It gets worse the older i get. This time it was awful. the last 2 hours of the trans-atlantic it was all i could do to keep from throwing up. Desi only slept for two hours on that flight which was 8 and half hours long. the food was awful and the there was only one kids movie. it was cars. desi loves that movie he can quote the whole thing word for word and knows every song. he has seen it a million times. he was not happy to watch it more than once. so we setteled on french cartoons which put him to sleep for those two hours (i guess he and i share and opinon on french. hehe) Atlanta was awful but i expected as much. the airport is a horrible reflection on a city that is so big and has so much history. i have only been to atlanta a couple of town, but i never found the city that bad. The airport is another story. the meanest and rudest people work there. we had a baggage problem and the people would not listen to us. we kept telling the lady that we needed to go to the counter to recheck a couple of our bags (due to a computer error) and she kept telling us to go somewhere else. i am sure that God was holding my tongue beacuse this women was beyond rude and i was trying to control a very tired 5 year old and translate for my mother and father-in-law who do not speak english. i was very happy to leave there. we only just made our plane too.

In Jacksonville we were very surprised that only one suitcase was missing. My husband suitcase, the one with all his clothes. this happened last year too. i told him to give me a change of his clothes to put in my carryon with mine and desi's clothes. he did not want to. oh well his problem. i think he will listen to me next time! his suitcase was dropped off at our house here at 7:00 am the next day so it was not all that serious.

Since arriving everything has been awsome. the weather was a bit uncooperative the past 2 days, but that was ok. we went shopping and explored the island a bit. There was a surf contest right outside our house the second day we were here. it was neat to watch, but we were not allowed to use the beach that is infront of our house. so we did other things that day.

all in all these first 5 days have been fun! I could not find my camera charger before i left and i am hoping to be able to get a new one here, but until then i have not taken many pictures. i hope to put some up soon!

lots of love,
amy

Friday, September 4, 2009

6 days

yes it is six days until we have to get up at 4:00 in the morning to go to the airport. I have not yet begun to pack. i am going to be there for 3 months, problably live through 3 seasons and have a 5 year old who somehow decided now would be a wonderful time to outgrow all his clothes. ok i know he didn't chose to do that now, but it really feels like it.

Everytime i want to start packing something gets in my way. Cleaning the house, haveing a friend over, parents night at the kindergarten...the list goes on. we have decided however that we are going to start packing this weekend.

this is not going to be fun.

My husband seems to think all you have to do is take out your clothes, put them in a suitcaes, and you're done.

uhmmmmm....NO. I always make lists. i write down every single thing that goes into my bag. This is also really important for Desi. He will need to take toys and all kinds of things. How am i supposed to know at the end of 2 weeks in a beach house if i really have everything. not to mention after the 3 months of staying with my family. hence why the lists are important.

wish me luck. i need it.

lots of love,
amy

Saturday, August 29, 2009

LÜK

I have discovered something really awesome. i want to share with you guys. I doubt any of you are familiar with this but it is the LÜK system (it may also be spelled LUEK). This system is wonderful. The idea is that you a workbook filled with fun problems and using the answers tiles you child works through the problems and can check them himself at the end. It perfect for car rides or quiet time!
A few years ago we recieved this set for Desi for his 2nd birthday. My german was not very good so i had a very hard time figuring out what to do with this thing. I eventually gave up and tossed it on a self in his room thinking one day Desi might figure it out.

Well shortly after my abitur, Desi (now 4) asked me what that was and how to use it. I finally sat down figuring that if i could and abitur i could certainly figure out something ment for two year olds. I worked on it for about two hours. then i finally understood. Now our collection has grown.

We have: a coganative thinking for two year old, matching for 3-5 year olds, beginners addition and subtraction for 4-6 year olds and beginners reading for 4-6 year olds. These however belong with the baby version of the set. only up to 6 years old. These are really nice introductions for kids to learn the system and build confidence. Desi really love the Math set. The only problem for me is that it is all in German. I am trying to find a way to order some from England, but they do not like shipping outside the UK...hehe.

This is the math book. The problems at the top each have a corrosponding picture and the tile with that picture is layed over the answer. in the end the child closes the case and truns it over. on the back is a pattern that needs to match the one on the page. if it matches then then all the answers are right. if not then the child has to go back and figure out which one is wrong.


The baby (bambino) line is very new and only has a few workbooks. so we sprung for the Mini set which is the next step up and has books to help him up till the 5th grade. The books are really not very expensive 5.70Euro. it is the the case with the tiles that kills ya. Desi is really happy with his new set:


He has and ABC book, two learning to read books, and math book, and a picture story book. These are obviously a bit harder as they have more problems, but Desi jumped right into when he got home from kindergarten. I really see this as being a big help through out his school time and reccommend it to all other parents (not just to help the kids i had fun with too!)
lots of love,
amy

Imaginarium

A couple of days ago i went shopping. it was the first time in about two months that i had gone any shopping except grocery shopping. I was beyond excited. Not just about getting some new things, but about what i was going to get. I finally decided that i was going to buy Desi some new sand toys. I debated for weeks because as Desi and i are going to be in the USA for 3 months we don't need to take unneccesary things with us. I ended up deciding that as he is only 5 years old and will be alone at a beach house (school is back in and my sister or cousins don't have time to come visit) getting some cool beach toys would the best i could do.

We recently got one of these in our downtown department store:

This is actually a picture of the store in barcelona (from the internet). Ours has a cool entrance like that though. This store is awsome. they have learning based toys and really are not too expensive. My sister-in-law refuses to by any toys made of plastic or that are colorful in any way for her children (no i do not understand why either), but even she own several toys from here. I know i had to give it a try.

So i went hoping to get one of the really really awsome sand sets i saw earlier this summer, but most everything was sold out. on the bright side though what was left was marked way down.

Desi now has:

A brick making set to build a sand wall (it is a german beach thing to build a sand wall, but really really fun). I am really wondering how well this will work.

A stamper to make his bricks look pretty. (sorry about the shadows.)

And last the Acropolis. Why? well because it looks really cool! it was only one they had left, earlier this summer they had four or five different famous landmarks you make out of sand.
I had a lot of fun choosing these and i can't wait to see what desi does with them at the beach (his mouth dropped open when he saw them! hehe)
lots of love,
amy

Monday, August 24, 2009

Counting down

yes my dear friends i am counting down. I love my home, my life, my family and being able to be at the center of it and take care of it, but i am truly ready for a break. I am counting down my friends in 17 days, i will be on Amelia Island in Florida.

In 17 days...

I will see this face, a happy little boy playing in the sand and jumping in the waves:I will be able to walk down this path for less than 60 seconds and have sand between my toes and the ocean in front of me. (No sadly my family will not be there :( )


I will see a different side of my husband. I will see a man who likes to boogie bored with me and carries me when my feet don't touch the bottom and teases me because he can still touch (yes my hubby is convinced i am short, but if he carries me and cares then i will let him tease away! hehe)
I will see many oppertunities to take pictures with my new camera, a chance to put cares away and make memories with my family.
In 17 days.


lots of love,
amy

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Sick and thinking of books.

yes that is what i am. I am so very sick. i have been in bed for 2 days now. i have no idea what i have, but my energy is nil. i am even too tited to shower (i am going to though as soon as Hook is over hehe). I wanted to post some more pictures, but i can't from the laptop.

Anyway. i wanted to share an idea with you all. When i was baby my mom bought me a copy of her favorite book. she even wrote me a message in the front. The book is Little Women. Though i have never read it (i fully intend to, but it is really really long), the though behind it means the world to me. My mom instilled a love of reading in me that has lasted to this day. I love to read beyond anything else. I love all genres and lengths. I have even caved and begun reading a 400 page book in German (Die Stadt der traumenden Bücher by Walter Moers).

This act of love, coupled with the fact that my 5 year old will beg and then sit still every night as i read him a chapter of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe has inspired me to do the same. I have chosen the book Peter Pan and Wendy by J. M. Barrie. I am determed to find him a beautiful copy and and instill in him the same love of reading. I chose this book because he is really into pirates and peter pan, as well as the story being one of the greatest classics ever. I just have to find a suitable copy, which i predict will take years. I really want a used copy in fairly good, but loved condition. I would kill for a first edition and am actually thinking of setting up a savings for this. I really love the idea of him having an heirloom like that...hmmm i really have to think about this...i was also wondering if any of you guys out their in bloggyland have something like this for your children? any reoccuring theme or collections you plan to pass on?

lots of love,
amy

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Beginnings

Yes it is that time of year again. The last 6 weeks seem to have just flown by. A few highlights are:

*Desi turned five!
*My brother Brian came to visit for 4 weeks.
*We spent several days in Duhnen (our summer house).
*We spent a week on a lovely island called Amrum.
*We went to Legoland in Denmark (and our license plates were stolen).
*We went to Heidepark.

Even with all that exciting fun summer has come to an end. At least for now hehe we are leaving for Florida on september 10. :)

Kindergarten has now started. German kindergarten that is. It is more like preschool in the US. Desi is now in his last year! He is Pate this year which means a younger child who is new this year is paired up with an older child and the older child shows them around and introduces them to other older kids. Desi is so excited to be helping out a younger child.

Desi on his first day:

Also i wanted to insert a little update on our language issues. I mentioned a while back (May i think it was) that all the 4 and 1/2 year olds were tested (on computers) to asses there language abilities. The results were not available to parents. A letter would only be sent if the child needed special classes. Everyone was sure Desi would recive a letter. So we spent the summer (in the back of our minds) waiting for this letter. Well i am proud and pleased to say that Desi did not recive a letter. A sign was posted in the Kindergarten saying the money for the classes was due. I think can safely say that our little bilingual boy is progressing just as well as his monolingual peers!

lots of love,
amy

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Dino boy

Desi is having a Dinosaur themed birthday this year. This is the picture we took to include on his invitation.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

Today was father's day. This was the first time Desi and i were able to put together something special for Maik to show him how much we appriciate all he does for us all year long. We made a pretty card and t-shirt with Desi's handprints all over it. We still have to figure out how to seal the paint as we used finger paint that washes off. Oh well it is the thought that counts...right? hehe.

breakfast in bed.
wake up sleepy papa!
Papa opening his present.
Desi was so proud!
Desi and his papa
Later on we went to Strawberry festival that was taking place across the street from our house. It was nice, except for one of the bouncy houses where desi was told he could not jump because he had glasses. I don't understand that at all. we have a personal (very large) bouncy house at home and desi's glasses have never been a problem. i was a bit ticked and desi was very hurt, but we moved on.
Desi climbing the tower. he was afraid to go any higher even though he did really well!
Bouncy house land!
Desi bounced to his hearts content.
wait a minute!
awww i just want a picture!
yay! hi desi!
i am still learning with my camera. it felt the net was more important.
maik coming down the huge slide.
Maik and desi had so much fun playing!

This last picture is us walking home. the rain came out of nowhere!
Needless to say by the time we were home, we were all soaked through. It was fun though. That evening we grilled and just hung around. it was nice to have some down time and just be the three of us.
Happy Father's Day Maik!
lot's of love,
amy

Friday, June 5, 2009

Guess what!

I got my abitur. well ok i found out on wenesday, but still i passes. I even got a wonderful average. I have 2,3 (1,0 is the best you can get). I am so happy and really proud. I am so very thankful that God moved a mountain (or rather a heart of stone) so i could have this. I know in the grand scheme of things this is a tiny rather insignificant problem compared to children caught in war zones, missing planes and all the other things people deal with on a daily basis, but for me this is huge.

lots of love,
amy

Monday, June 1, 2009

Desi's Birthday Book

Wow have i been busy lately. It is really hard to change my routine over from school and being mom and just doing enough to get by to being just mom and really working hard for my family. in short everything is crazy.


So i have been working on a project. I call it Desi's birthday book. I just cannot throw away a birthday card or any card for that matter and have sooooo much stuff from desi's birthdays so i though this would be a good idea.



I started with a binder that i didn't really find pretty.





Then i used my digi scrapbooking stuff (the kit i used for this is Swing on a Star from Ziggle and PPD from Scraporchard).



I printed everything out and taped it all down. Then i covered it with clear packing tape. It looks laminated onto binder. Here is the finished cover.







The inside is a bit more interesting. I just can't throw away cards and that is where the idea came from. I really wanted a way for desi to look back and see how much fun his birthdays were and see all the cards people wrote. When blogger decides to quit wrecking my colors on the pages then i will add those too. update later.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

A boy and his bike

In germany an important mode od transportation is the bicycle. This is my bike. I love it and i usually take it to and from school and well anywhere near except grocery shopping. i think my basket is a bit small.

my bike


Naturally Desi would need to learn to ride a bike. So we started working on leaning. Here he is at two with his first bike.



That was fun, but not really helping him so we went on to this. In german it is called a Laufrad, but i have seen them called Likeabike in the USA. These are awsome. They teach balance and coordintation. oh and they can be used to scare the crap out of moms!



Desi as he zoomed past me


Due to the Laufrad when it came time for Desi to get a real bike and learn to ride. The moment he tried out to ride the two wheel bike at the store he was able to. Here he is about 5 months after he got his bike on our ride home from kindergarten. This was take 3 after i crashed, then desi and i crashed into each other. talk about trick i was trying to film, ride, and watch for cars. hence the no breath! hehe.


video
yep my little boy is all grown up and riding a two wheel bike! I can't believe it.
A couple of days ago it was so nice outside. Desi told me that his bike was very dirty and he wanted to wash it. How responsible!






The finished product. He was so proud! He really does love his bike.


lots of love,

amy

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Abitur

So i know i have been gone for quite a long time. I do have a really do have a good reason. I have been working on my abitur. I would like give you a slight look into the madness that is the abitur.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

(Sidenote: still having issues with my pictures uploading, but i figured out how to get this one!)

So as i said i have been studying to for my abitur. I think for anyone to really follow and understand how i ended up at this point i have to tell you a little bit about myself.

I am 22 years old. I had my son at age 17 and while that undoubtly made things harder, i persisted through (some rather hard circumstance that i may tell about at another date) and graduated high school at age 18 in 2005. That was all fine and dandy. i missed honar graduate by o.5 gpa points and i also failed to achieve my International Baccholorette (sp?) diploma by 3 points though i got all my certifecates except in Psychology (sp?). So even though i wanted to be an honar graduate i did recognize how lucky i was to be graduating at all considering my circumstances

While in high school in my senior i fell in love with my husband. He was an exchange student took my son and i back to germany with him the summer after graduation. This was supposed to be only a 5 week vacation. Well as you can see it turned into a bit more than that. His father asked me if i wanted to stay and learn german for a year and go to univerity here. This was a hard decision. I had a one year old toddler, i didn't speak the language, and i was already accepted to a collage in the USA. I finally decided my decision would come down to one thing: money. Specifically if i got the scholarship i was counting on to pay for my tuition (on top of tuition and books, i was going to have live away from home, pay for an apartment, food, all those associated bills, plus day care.) I ended up not getting the scholarship because of the IB program i did not meet the science requierment and was not allowed to have the scholarship. At the time it was free to go to University in germany and i was looking at starting life with at least $20,000 in debt. I chose to stay.

So I went to apply at the University which was loads of fun. They would not accept my diploma they said it was the equivelent of what german childeren recieve after graduating the 10th grade. My ACT score were also not high enough (i had a 24 i needed a 29 or 30 out of 32 points to get in). They said the only way i could go to unversity here would be to do the Abitur which i believe is truly the equivelent of a collage education in the USA. It is three years long and is more work than i ever thought.

To bring this around to a point. The past 3 or 4 weeks i have been preparing and taking my Abitur exams. My exams were:

English: topic: Utopia. I liked this topic, but i was dissapointed by the text in the examine. It was not well written nor was it like any of the practice material. I definantly do not feel i did my best.

Biology (in English): topic: Genetics and Evolution. I thought this exam was well structured the question were fun to work through, but i almost ran out of time. I really enjoy biology.

Wirtschaft (Economics) (in German): topic: Markt, Preis, Wettbewerb (Market, Price, Competition) and Globalisierung (Globalization). This was a nightmare. Not only were the question about other topics than the ones we were told i am bad in the class anyway. I do not understand it and doing it in a foreign language did not help. I only need one point on the exam to pass. The catch is that i actually have to score three points to pass because they will take of the maximum two points for my german mistakes. Did i mention how bad my german is.

These were my written exams. To point out a few things on the above picture: My beloved pink tea pot that is thermal so my tea stays warm, it is sitting on top of my two biology books and below that is my fuzzy blue phone ( i had to call someone to explain a math thing in Eco to me), my importants notes on princess note paper (i love disney princesses) hanging on my window sill, the candy wrappers really thought all i ate was candy to keep the endorphines coming, Economics for Dummies that book really helped me understand some things, two full binders worth of information that i need to know, my three-eyed-fish blinky sitting in my childhood jelwery box, my thomas kinkade background regaurdless of your feelings about his reasons for painting they are calming pictures and last my oversized belle cup from disneyland paris. those are all my essesntials from studying.

These things are stating to pile up again as i study for my oral exam. The class is World Studies and the topic is South Africa. I am very nervous.

I spent a lot of time over the past two weeks in prayer. Specific prayer for my exams. Please add me to your prayer list that i get my abitur. Also that i have focus and clarity in my oral exam. thanks in advance.

I wanted everyone to know that i have been itching to blog, but i feel so guilty as i have 100 other things to get done. i really need to keep up with this. I really enjoy writing and well i love reading everyone elses. my last exam (the world studies one) is on May 5th. please keep me in your thoughts and prayers then.

lots of love,
amy

Friday, February 27, 2009

Ahhhh....how nice

this little family of three is going away. I have lots to tell everyone, but i will wait till i get back. Our family really needs some time together, just us. This is just a weekend away, but after how the past couple of weeks have gone, it feels like a vacation!

i hope you all have a wonderful weekend. i have to pack now, see you on sunday!

<3 amy

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Fasching!

That is the german word for carnival. Desi's Kindergarten celebrated it today. The theme was "what I have always wanted come to kindergarten as". Desi was of course Captian Hook. He was so excited about it.


Here is the over excited pirate eating his breakfast of choice: Ceral with soy milk!































This is the big area in the middle of Desi's kindergarten. More kids in costumes!








Desi's classroom had a huge pirate ship much to desi's delight!










I think this picture is so sweet. This is desi and a little girl from his class named Sogand. She is so cute and so sweet, but you think this looks like a really old and bad wedding picture! lol.







Desi and his best friend Jannis were the pirates of the day!







One of Desi's teacher was also a pirate!













Desi's friend Tobi. His dog even had a matching costume.






Random view of the parents being kicked out. look at all those kids. wow.
Happy Fasching to everybody!