Münster, Germany

While Liam and I were visiting the Allens in Wuppertal last month we took a day trip up to Münster for their Saturday market. Now, you guys know I love a good market so I was very keen!

As soon as Liam and Eloise woke up from their morning naps we all packed up our things and hopped in the car. Once there, we strapped our kids up – Eloise in the stroller and Liam in the Ergo – and made our way to the market.

The market itself was great! They had flowers and meats and vegetables and honies. But, what I think was really cool about this market was the massive amount of food trucks they had. I love a good food truck!

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After the market we parked ourselves at the Pinkus’ Müller for some lunch and a bit of a break. Afterwards, we slowly made our way back to the car to head back home.

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I was hoping Liam would get sleepy and fall asleep in the Ergo for his afternoon nap. Nope. This boy had too much to see. This boy loves being outside and observing everything. I was so proud of how he did. However, the real star of the day was my back. It carried that boy like a boss AND didn’t even complain afterwards! Thank you, back :)

I really enjoyed walking around Münster. It’s a really beautiful city.

Fun fact: After the war the Old Town was rebuilt exactly as it looked before the war.

Fun fact numero dos: it’s the bicycle capital of Germany.

I think both of those things heavily contribute to the attractiveness of Münster. I would definitely go back if I lived closer… and try out every single food truck!

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Wuppertal, Germany

Liam and I survived our mother-son trip to Germany last month!

I was really nervous about how Liam would sleep in a new place BUT Liam was a freakin’ super star and slept like a champ! Hallelujah!! It might help that Germany is only one time zone away. Still, thank you, Liam.

So, anyway, Germany was amazing! I had been wanting to visit Andrea and Garrick since they moved out there last year. Going when I did turned out to be great timing because it was their one year anniversary for living there; so I got to babysit and let them have a night out to celebrate. I had also been itching to do some travel and explore a new place or two and dust off the cobwebs on photography skills.

Andrea and Garrick, and Eloise, were amazing. With the face-to-face chat between us two new moms, Liam having toys and a buddy to play with – even though he made her cry more times than I’d like to admit, the warmer weather, doing our nails and applying face masks, Garrick’s baseball chat, and the Allen’s amazing hospitality, it was an amazing trip!

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PC: Andrea

I had so much fun hanging out with Andrea and Garrick (and Eloise!). This was a much needed trip for me and I was so glad to have been able to get some good quality time in with my friends :) I can’t wait until next time!

 

Heidelberg

Will update: Will crushed his final test for his language course this week. And of course “crushed” is his word because that’s what Will does. He doesn’t just pass a test or beat the competition… he CRUSHES it! AND, we’re in the single digits of days left until Will comes home. SINGLE. DIGITS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

With Will coming home in eight days (eight days!!!!) I have a blog goal of getting caught up and to start writing in more present-tense. That means I need to blog about the rest of Germany (which is this post), Bristol, a couple of cafes, Venice (<– which was awesome!), and develop the roll of film in my Minolta. So, let’s start with Heidelberg.

Right after New Year’s, Will and I took a day trip up to Heidelberg. It’s just north of Stuttgart (which is north of Tübingen) and described as a “larger version of Tübingen”. I wanted to go there because my dad was stationed there about 40+ years ago and every time he talks about it a huge smile comes across his face as he remembers his time there. So, being this close to a city that means so much to my dad, I had to go.

Nutella crepes will forever make me the happiest little tourist ever!!

I looked up a place to eat before going to Heidelberg and number one on Trip Advisor was Schnitzelbank. You guys, this place did not fail to deliver. It was absolutely amazing! We were told to book a reservation because it’s small and fills up fast, but luckily we got there early enough to get the last table. It has a really cozy and friendly atmosphere and the staff are so kind. But, the star of the show was the food. Will and I got the schnitzel (duh!) and the spaetzle. Both were the best we had ever had. Every bite was fantastic! If I lived in Heidelberg I would have a standing reservation for dinner there every night. No joke, that food was amazing.

The best part (after the food) was being able to Skype with my dad the next day and actually know what he was talking about when he mentioned going to the castle or hanging out at the river or walking along the streets in the Alstadt! I didn’t feel like we were an ocean apart. I felt like he was right next to us telling us about buying french fries off of a street vendor or how everyone would go to this certain part of the river on sunny days. I loved it.

I’m so glad Will and I took the opportunity to go :)

Auf Wiedersehen Twenty Thirteen

You guys, less than two weeks until Will comes home.

Less. Than. Two. Weeks. I may be freakin’ out a little bit on the inside!

So, about our time in Germany and New Year’s Eve.

Will and I aren’t big planners but when we travel we like to have an idea of what we should see and do in a place and have a “top 3” list. But for Germany there was no plan; we were both just so happy to be together that we didn’t care that we didn’t make any plans.

I will admit that before leading up to Christmas I was a little frustrated that Will wasn’t coming to Edinburgh and I was the one who had to make the trek. It would have been so much easier if he came to me and it would have been nice to have him home for Christmas. But, honestly, I don’t think I could have let him leave again: not that it’s been any easier for me to be the one leaving! Saying goodbye either way has been hard for both of us. As soon as I got there I instantly knew we made the right call with me going to him. If he had come to Edinburgh there would have been so much to do and people to see that we would have spent waaaaay too much time and money trying to fit everything in. It would have been packed. Packed with good things like seeing friends, but packed none the less. With me in Tübingen we were able to have a nice lazy holiday! Something I know I was really craving.

Since Tübingen is so small, and I pretty much saw everything when I visited in November, there wasn’t much left to do. We cooked together a lot, I read all three Hunger Games books, we stayed up late, slept in late, went to a couple of pubs, watched movies, baked sugar cookies, took walks, and went on a day trip to Heidelberg (that’s for another post). It was a supremely lazy holiday!

For New Year’s Eve we met up with one of his friends at a local pub then went to another friend’s for dinner and fireworks. Now, my picture’s for fireworks don’t really do the whole experience justice because there were a ton of trees around, but hopefully the video will give you an idea as to how crazy the fireworks were! Seriously, there were fireworks going off all over the place! It was amazing!

Pretty cool, right?!

I’m such a fan of New Year’s Eve. I really do love it. And as I’m getting older I’m feeling more and more sentimental towards it. Maybe it was our being apart this year that has intensified these feelings but it feels like the one of the more important things Will and I do in our marriage. It’s simple, and almost implied that we’re together on this holiday (much like we should be for every holiday), but it means so much to me to make sure we’re together specifically for those last and first minutes.

It felt a little easier to breathe on this trip than on the last because we had so much time together. So much time to hold hands, tell stories, make future plans, and talk about the year we’ve just been through and plan for the year ahead.

I don’t know about you, but 2013 was pretty good. Will passed his 1 year review boards for his PhD, I took on a new role at work, we started going to a new church, we both started to feel settled in Edinburgh, we officially have lived in our flat for longer than anywhere else we lived in together, we saw more of Scotland (and England), we saw more of Europe, we got to play host to our awesome friends and family who came to visit, we celebrated four wonderful years of marriage, Will got several reviews published (!!), I started a new decade (hello 30!), and we made new friends all while strengthening old friends here! Great, eh?!

And now, looking ahead onto 2014, there’s so much to look forward to!

Auf wiedersehen twenty thirteen! Hallo twenty fourteen!!

A Delayed Christmas

So, some of you know from my Facebook that I didn’t get to see Will on Christmas Eve (a lot of tears were shed). My first flight was delayed twice leaving me with a 5 minute layover. As soon as I could I ran to find my flight only to find out it had already left (more tears were shed). Then, KLM put me up in a hotel and gave me some flight vouchers (Merry Christmas to me!). While Will had to ride the train back to Tübingen alone that night.

So, Will and I both woke up alone Christmas morning (even more tears were shed). Not what we were both hoping for this Christmas.

But, we got up Christmas morning with a countdown in our heads: T minus 4 hours! We had a quick skype in the morning over breakfast and we both made our way to our respective airports (me to the Amsterdam aiport and him to Stuttgart’s airport). I picked up some Stroopwafels (Will LOVES these things!) and little ornament to remind ourselves of this Christmas. 

Seeing his face at the airport was pure beauty! I had missed him so much!

We had some time before the next Tübingen bus would arrive so we grabbed a snack and told each other what we got for Christmas. It was a bit anti-climactic (which is good for me because I’m not a gifts person) but we knew that going into this. I was only taking carry-on luggage and whatever I got him he’d have to bring it back six weeks later (just six more weeks!!!!!). But because Will IS a gifts person there were wrapped up chocolates he got from a chocolate festival waiting for me in his room. Yeah, I’m spoiled!

20131228-121412.jpgYesterday’s walk along the Neckar River in Tübingen, Germany

We had our big Christmas breakfast and our Christmas dinner the following day (Boxing Day) and enjoyed a wonderful walk throughout the city a the day after that (when the sun decided to come out).

Even though we lost a day I’m grateful that this happened on a trip where we had 11 days together and not one that we had just three days: that would have been absolutely horrible. And even though our Christmas was delayed a bit I’m grateful that we both have this chunk of time to spend together; which happens to feel both special and normal at the same time (??). I don’t know, this long distance thing is weird.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!

All I Want For Christmas…

I have a confession: I haven’t  been feeling the Christmas Spirit this year. This whole long distance thing has put a real damper on this festive season and I’m just not into it. There’s no tree up in our flat, no lights, minimal baking, and no Christmas music. If you walked into our flat you would not think it was Christmas. I did think about putting things up but I knew that the more “Christmas-y” it felt the more alone I’d feel and that I’d also have to put it all away by myself… unless I decide to leave it up for when Will comes back home in February ;) But seriously, I’ve been feeling very homesick and I just wanted to lessen all of that.

BUT, all of that is about to change! Today, after work, I’m flying out to Germany to go spend Christmas with the love of my life! It’s the only thing I want for Christmas: 11 days with Will to hold his hand, laugh together, cuddle up to him in the middle of the night, walk side by side down tiny German streets, escape the cold together in a cozy pub with some gluhwein, and wake up next to him every morning! It’s all I want: to be part of a couple again, with Will (… and a leather jacket… and a subscription to Birchbox ;) ).

These pictures are from my Minolta when I went out there in November for two and a half days. It was too short but it was worth it. He’s worth 6am tube rides and overnight buses.

I’m really looking forward to having more time in Tubingen. It’s not a large city but it’s charming and quaint and bustling and cozy. And the German language… beautiful! It’s a very impressive and underrated language. I enjoyed hearing it all around me.

So, since it’s Christmas Eve, and in Germany they celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve, I thought I would wish you all a FROHE WEIHNACHTEN!!

Peaches & Herb

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I’m visiting Will, in Tubingen, for a long weekend and we’ve been having the most perfect lazy Sunday!

I hope all of you are able to love on your loved ones this weekend too :)