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Gingle bell gingle bell gingle all the way!

I can not wait for Christmas! I know your reading and thinking what about Halloween and Thanksgiving. Those are also my other 2 favorite holidays but here in Germany the celebration is different. They do not have Halloween here. Don’t get me wrong the American tradition of Halloween is slowly being adapted here but no one go house to house to get candy. Just costume wearing and little party. The German Halloween is call Fasching. It is a period marked with great joy and occasion. Fasching as a term derived from the word Fastnacht, meaning “eve of the beginning of the fast.” Linguists speculate that “Fasching” also developed out of the Middle High German “vaschanc” or “vastschang” (Fastschank), which means the last drink served before the Lenten fast. Typically involves a public celebration or parade combining some elements of a circus, mask and public street party. People often dress up or masquerade during the celebrations.

Thanksgiving is an American holdiay. It started when the pilgrims wanted to thank the Indians for all their help. However, Christian Germans too celebrate a day of Thanksgiving to God for a plentiful harvest. On the first Sunday of October visitors to German churches will find a plethora of fruits, vegetables, sheaves of grain, and also baked goods, as decorations around the altars. Visitors to market places and fairgrounds will oftentimes find Erntedankfest (literally: harvest gratitude festival) dances, displays, booths, a special Erntefeuer (harvest fire), and other festivities to celebrate this occasion. Thanksgiving is just a Christian event usually on a Sunday but not a dedicated party or celebration event. Sometimes peoples have some special decoration for church service and/or kids having a special performance. No turkeys around. I can't wait....!

For Christmas they go out all the way. Christmas is so much fun here. The celebration begins 11-24 to 12-23. Almost one month of celebrating Christmas! They have a Christmas market (Weihnachtsmarkt also know as Christkindlmarkt). It pull in tons of residents and visitors from different cities and all over the world. All of Germany have this market in pretty much each cities. The bigger the cities ofcourse the bigger the markets and festival. Here in Esslingen they have two: Traditional Christmas market and the Medieval Christmas market. They sells crafts, have games, drink Gluhwein (hot wine that taste so yummy and keep you warm on a nice cold night walking through the market). Plenty of eating and performance on stage. Does not cost a thing to get in or watch. It is totally free. Just have to pay for drink, beverage, and crafts. I will talk more about that when time comes. Want to also share with you that they have Christmas market in different part of America that is also nice. Not as big as here but atleast you can get a taste of feel of a typical German Christmas market, taste some Gluhwein and traditional German food! The vendors from what I learn when I attended a few in the USA that they are really Germans who travel to America once a year to share their customs and I think also in Canada. I think this is so cool. Let me give you the link encase you would like to see if it happen in the downtown of your city: http://www.germanfoods.org/consumer/events/christmasmarkets.cfm
This link is for people who live in Canada. I notice the market there is only for a few days! http://www.christkindl.ca/

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Yesterday I made Jamaica rum raisin ice cream. I wanted to treat myself to something cool to cool down a little from the heat that we have been getting. Plus I wanted a drink. So why not make a cold treat that was not only freshing but relaxing:)

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A few weeks ago I did my first Youtube video on how to make German Knodel. I got the idea to make this video because the last time I visit the State I gave my mother and brother a box of Knodel with the Germany instruction on it. It is like reading codes if one do not know how to read them.

This is the video I made with step by step direction:

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For the last 2 and a half months I have been growing a garden consist of potatoes, cabbages, carrots, onion, scallions, bell peppers, prune, orange, pear, mango, tomatoes, and watermelons. It is interested to go out there literally everyday and see growths. The mango, pear, carrots, bell peppers, and tomatoes were the first thing I planted two and a half months ago and the carrots are growing like wild bushes. The pear and mango are not showing out of the dirt as yet. The bell peppers and tomatoes just shoot out last week since it was pretty hot here, now it is cold and rainy again.

I planted the scallions and cabbage three weeks ago and they both started to grow with the quickness. The onions I planted a few days ago, so far nothing. Watermelons were planted two weeks ago and so far nothing. Yesterday I planted the prune seed. The orange amaze me how it grows after one week. The potatoes are my favorite they are growing bigger each day. My only problem will be that all my vegetable will be small due to me being cheap on the soil. I have two bags left and still put only a little bit of dirt in the container. My husband laughs at me how they all are going to be miniature. I said oh well this is my little experiment to see what can grow and what cannot. Next year I will know what to do and what not to do, lol. I have post a picture of my little project of the things that are growing so far.

Oh ya, everything was grown from seeds and I only water everything once a week. That is all the water it need since the bottom will eventually holds the water. Thank goodness for the law of gravity.

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Today John and I decided to go swimming since the fitness center was closed. On our way walking to the bath house I saw a nun. I at first thought that she was Amish because she dresses like an Amish lady from head to toe. John explained to me that she is a sister that dress uniform is black and grey. Keep my eyes open because I will see as he calls it the pink penguins. Meaning there are nuns that wear white and pink. So I went up to the nun to ask her, just to confirm that she was a sister, and of course she said yes. I was pleasantly please.

I once wanted to become a nun. I was very spiritual back in the days, but when I have learn once I begin studying to become a nun that I could not have sex…I said forget it. I love to have sex. Therefore, I left that idea behind. I sometime think about the different path of life I would have played out if I took them. How different my life would be today.

On another note today is a German holiday for the workers. Mostly all stores were close today and many restaurants. Today was also Esslingen 15 years anniversary of Flohmarkt (second hand sales) for miles and mile in the city center (stadtmitte). We did not find anything of interest. We walked back home eating an ice cream cone and stopped by the bakery. We bought a few rolls and ate my first slice of onion cake. It was delicious. It is called Zwiebelkuchen a Swabish traditional desert, but to me it felt like lunch, lol.

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Last weekend my husband and I went over a few quotes. As usual we were bumping heads. We are just too much alike and too stubborn at times. We both know what will work; however, I know a little bit more about the products then he does. He knows about the profits, taxes, import, export, and etc. I know about fashion, beauty, and what is going on in the world. We both yell it out then laugh it out. We contacted a few suppliers in which we are interested. It was just team work. All this took more than 4 hours. I really enjoyed this. Normally I would do all the work by myself and via email him the information and he would via email me the info back. Yes, strange since we live together, but this is the best way of not bumping head so much. That is why this weekend was nice since we actually sat down together in our home office and look over my spread sheets and etc. Later we took a break from business and went downtown Stuttgart to enjoy the beautiful weather, shopping, eating, and strolling along with a tasty ice cream cone like big kids.

When we came back home we was looking at pictures that we took earlier. I have a new Nikon 90 camera and it is really cool. It is like a miniature professional camera like John has. He has the professional Canon D90, I think that I am afraid to touch. I am highly clumsy and I hate to hear is mouth if I accidentally break his expensive toy, lol. So he bought me mines almost two month ago. Well when we were reviewing the photos. My husband in a way complimented me. He said that I look more and more beautiful as I get older. I was not for sure how to take that, so I just laughed and said thank you I think, lol.

Yesterday I went for a walk to handle some business. I was out the house for over 2 hours. I am always proud when I do things on my own here. In America I am very independent and here I am handicap since my Deutsch is kindergartenish. On my way walking I took some pictures of wine yards, building structures, and monument. I am a very strange person. I find the beauty in things that many people over look. I love old factories, statues, sculpting, and structures of homes and buildings. I think they are pleasantly beautiful. I walked and walked that I end up In Mettinger, a neighboring city. When I seen that I walked too far, I told myself I better head back home. On the way home I stop at a little corner store and a little old lady just walk in front of me and a guy in line and set her things on the belt. The guy look at me like can you believe this. I just look at him and smile. I am sure the little old lady knew what she done but of course used her age to get by, lol. I grabbed a liverwurst sandwich for the walk home from the baker. Now this is not normal of me. I am not a believer of eating and walking on the street if it is not an ice cream cone. Living here in Germany this is normal and I am slowly getting accustom to some of the norms here that I would call abnormal!

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This is a post I wrote in my notebook when I did not have internet connection a month ago:

I cannot stand when a person takes advantage of another person; especially when that person is helping them to get on their feet. Some people say one thing and do something else and I guess forget what they said earlier. For example: a person said to me that they never had a credit card in their life because they believe if they do not have it then they should not get it or buy the items. I totally agree with this when she, Haras, stated this. But then later when we went to a discount store she continue complaining that she does not have her wallet and how she left it at my mother house. I told her she should always take along some money with here where ever she goes because she never knows when she will be in need to buy something or even to get home. Anything can happen. She replied, “Yes, I know. I normally take my wallet with me but it is so heavy in my pocket that I left it at the house.” So I told her, “Well you now know where this store is located when you’re in the mood come back.” Later I found out that she is conning my mother to buy the products for her. I was frustrated…why is she asked my mother to buy these products when she can buy it herself. She recently got paid and can come back later anytime! So my mother asked me to pay since she did not carry enough on her. I wanted to yelled and tell my mother, “No, I am not responsible for Haras, I am only responsible for you”! But this is my mother so I did what she asks me but I was so furious. My mother even mention…”are you mad”. I told her of course, you know how I feel about helping out people who are supposed to help themselves. What I just purchase for Haras is a want it is not a need. For a person who used to be homeless they rather spend money on wants? I want back my money as soon as I reach back to the house! When we all arrived in the house I waited patiencely cussing in my head…and Haras gave me back my money and said thank you. I of course said you’re welcome. I think the whole ordeal that pissed me off is what my mother accepted. Since I been little people always took advantage of her and took her kindness, but later trample all over her. I was hoping she learned by now. First strike with me with Haras was when she gave my mother $75 and this is supposed to be a monthly pay since Haras said she only get paid $630 once a month. Are you f-ing kidding me! Second strike was the store incident. Granted she does many things that annoy me that I notice so far about her…these two strikes was my biggest. I am trying to convince my mother of kicking her out since Haras is trying to get comfortable. But she said she see what she will give next month. Hell I would stay with someone too if I am only paying $75 a month and they are sharing their dinner with me, and everything cheaper than a hotel! What a loser!!!!

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