August 28, 2008

late summer blooms

every morning when i open our front door, just for a moment, i have to stay still and admire the wonderful dahlia greeting me.
it's one of the fancy once as you can see....

and the dark blue flower pedals who climb up on the trellis of the stairs are a gift each time i walk by. thank you summer, thank you mother earth for nourishing those plants and letting them grow for my pleasure!
the night's are already getting cooler but we still get lots of sun and warm days, lots of time to enjoy the walks to our community garden and harvest more of those delicious tomatoes and green beans.
we will be heading north for a long weekend camping in the main woods. once more a little vacation from city life! the plan is to be back early next week...

August 27, 2008

city feed and supply

the "new" store in town... CITY FEED AND SUPPLY
it's not new per say, it's just an added location and double the size of it's "mother" location. a wonderful place to have a sandwich or an iced latte. a quick place to send my kids for the missing ingredient when i'm in the middle of preparing dinner...

August 26, 2008

yesterday's trip

we did take the ferry over to salem. it was fun, a 50 minute ride on the catamaran and then get off in one of america's oldest harbors. just across the street was the candy store we came for... "Ye old pepper co." every child had their pocket money on hand and of course some of us had a hard time figureing out which candies or chocolates we wanted to buy...., never the less all of us stubled out of the little store with a wonderful goodie bag and just around the corner was a little park where we ate some of our newly aquiered treasures!

everyone was enojoying their sweets and drinking water at the little fountain.... of course sugar makes you thirste, even long ago they new this and installed that little drinking fountain down the street from the candy store.

the next stop was the pirate museum.... and then the ice creme shop, after that we all played at a dried out water place, and had fun playing in it, freeze tag was yesterday's game.
the ride home was on the commuter rail, one more thing i have never done since we arrived in the united states 11 years ago, riding a train! yes we did it and it was fun.

August 25, 2008


amos lost his first tooth today! and we can't even see where he lost it, because the new one is already there, looking fabulous!
it all happened at the oldest candy store in america!
photos of our trip to salem will follow tomorrow...

August 23, 2008


education is like water!

said by a young lady from the karakoram himalaya valleys in pakistan. she got the chance and took the action to go to school. one of the many schools greg mortenson helped to build in the hindu kush of.
read on in "three cups of tea", it is a remarkable adventure story, not only thrilling to read, it's proof that one ordinary person really can change the world for the better. with the central asia institute as his home base institution, and a strong wife on his side, he made it possible to bring literacy into lot's of girls (and boys) life's.

August 22, 2008

naomi's hut

ich konnte diesem foto einfach nicht widerstehen, wir haben es so gut zusammen und naomi ist immer voll kreativer ideen was sie anziehen kann.

August 21, 2008

crab apples

it was such a wonderful day yesterday and our neighbor invited us to pick crab apples! there was no time left to write.....
but today is an other day and here are the photos. we had fun as well as fighting over who get's to pick where in the tree etc!
i ended up preparing those little apples for about 1hour, a lot of work for 10 glasses of jam but it was delightful. i gladly did it and had good company in my kids and neighbors.

walking up the street each with some kind of wicker basket on their head...

the picking itself was more of a fight who get's to pick where in the tree and as we were in lack of a ladder, we used step stools and empty up side down trash barrels...

loaded with apples, those sour little fruits! the kids loved to eat them. for myself, i was not tempted at all to wait until a bit later, when they were becoming jam...

the "jaming" was fun, 10 cups of paired and cut apples in a big pot, i added 5 cups of sugar, as i somehow did not realize that usually it's as much sugar as fruit, but ran out of sugar in the house... so i added an other cup of raw agave nectar, two cups of water and about 3/4 of a cup lemon juice. it started to smell so wonderful and looked gorgeous! the apples were not really falling apart as i expected, so i used the blender, but just for a little bit. i like when there is still real fruit visible in jam.
after about 30 minutes of rolling boil i filled the wonderful jam into jars, and we already started the first jar for breakfast. yummmmm!

August 19, 2008

orthodontics 101

our oldest is now all geared up....
our third visit to the orthodontist is over, all the excitement to get braces is passed. we are now learning to put handle all the "gear".
we have learned terms like "lip bumpers", "bite plate", "redirecting eruption", crowded teeth etc.
the bite plate looks fabulous, green-white swirled with golden sprinkles! wow i guess there must be some long lasting interest for this, to keep the user going...
elias is excited about his bite plate, but the lip bumpers will take a bit more time and practice to get in and out of his mouth, we will work on it and hope for some shifting of teeth in his mouth and a moving forward of his lower jaw... as he shows a classic overbite, as we learned is very common in the germanic geene pool.

August 18, 2008

monday morning

a new day, a sunny day! i'm very thankful for this mornings sunshine. no rain for at least today...
being outside, do some learning behind the house. we started our early american history adventure! it took me about two years to be convinced that this would be a fun subject to study. my friends and also the boys really wanted to dive into this, so we do!
starting out with "walking the world's rim" by betty baker. a good start in the sun!

we will also head out into the garden in to harvest ripe tomatoes and green beans, i'm sure the kids will want to water the plants once more. but that is not going to happen, the tomatoes are already fighting fungus attacks because of the wet weather we had all july.

August 16, 2008

downy woodpecker

what an exciting sighting! just before breakfast we discovered a pair of downy woodpeckers. the kids were not to sit down, they were just glued to the birds eating our sunflower seeds!
and soon enough an american goldfinch was joining them in their mid morning meal.
i was once more awe struck. we do live in the middle of a big city, have no real back yard and there wild life is presented for us to enjoy.
once more the children lead us and show us how wonderful nature is...

August 15, 2008

babies erste muetze

ich konnte den resten von seidengarn nicht widerstehen und musste ein kleines muetzchen fuer unser kommendes baby stricken.
ich habe schon dutzende dieser muetzen gestrickt, in allen groessen fuer kleine kinder, nun bin ich gespannt ob die groesse unserem neuankoemmling im november dann auch passt.
es war einmal mehr ein genuss die seide durch die finger gleiten zu lassen und zu sehen wie sich schnell ein ganzes bildet. eigentlich wuerde ich gerne noch ein paar soecklein stricken, doch hab ich bis heute noch nicht geschaft die einfachste strickanleitung so umzusetzen, dass das resultat gut aussieht und auch zu brauchen...
fuer den moment lass ich's beim ersten versuch, einem kleinen soecklein das ich halbwegs fertig hatte aber das seidengarn wieder aufwicklete!

August 14, 2008

nochmals sonntag

so friedlich kann's sein mit den zweien, ein herz und eine seele!
die erkundung der festung war ein tolles erlebnis fuer uns alle, die buben genossen das selber herumstreunen koennen.

da amos sein geburtstagsgeschenk von unserer grossmutter a erhalten hat am morgen in der kirche trug er den plastiksack mit seinen schaetzen natuerlich den ganzen tag ohne murren mit viel besitzerstolz rum. joel und ich konnten das lachen oft nicht verkneifen...

alte gebaeude und "aussichtsterrassen..."

August 13, 2008


i'm still trying to take a self portrait at least once a month....
and i do like to look at my feet for this. maybe it's the easiest of self portraits to take, or i'm just not in the mood to put up my tripod!

and here the dress! yes i do enjoy it and it was a fun and quick project, it's good to get back into sewing some of my own cloths especially with such nice fabric. i really like purlsoho and even half a year ago i could not have imagined to shop for fabrics online, this shop did it to me.
the next project is a pair of maternity pants, fabric is in the mail!

August 12, 2008

georges island

it was a lot of fun, on the island. not that we had id all planned....
the plan was to go to the new fountains at rose kennedy greenway in the city, just to have some pleasure playing with the water there. but as we arrived there was now water! what ever the city was thinking or not doing, it was moment of helplessness. so we decided on the spot to hop onto the ferry for the islands in the boston harbor.
we got some sandwiches from the boulangerie at sel de la terra, tickets for the ferry and off we went.
the sun and wind was wonderful all of us enjoyed the boat ride over to georges island. the sandwiches turned out to be delicous and we were able to enjoy them just before the rain clouds opened their gates.
for a moment we had to seek shelter, but then went on to explore the fort. a wonderful place for a sunday afternoon. some places are rather spookey, as the halls are all empty and dark. it's just great to explore all the different hallways, stairways and tunnels.
for myself, i enjoyed the view the most, the vast sea with thunder and lightening over the city, big storm clouds around us. we were able to hop onto the ferry back to boston just before the rain hit once more.

August 11, 2008

place mat to go

i jut had to take this project on..... it was the perfect gift for a friend of mine. she likes to cook and picnic, often fancy. she definitely had to get this place mat.
i found it in lotta's simple sewing book and immediately caught my eye.
it was a quick and fun project and i used some fun cotton for the outside, which i purchased a few months ago, when i was buying fabric for naomi's quilt. for the inside i used some old linen, not antique but used. the fabric was used for curtains in our living room. the curtains were basically stripes hung on a rod and covered the lower half of the window. now we have knitted curtain, inherited from my mother in law, more about that in a later post i guess....

August 9, 2008

lazy saturday

although it was supposed to be just a normal saturday, and i guess that's what it was. lazzy was the outlook and i ended up getting things done.
family breakfast with some leftover semolina-blueberry-casserole was a treat
joel and the boys cleaned the fish tank, it was soooo needed
weeding the front yard path, wow the weeds have enjoyed the warm rainy weather, but they are gone now
getting started with the next sewing project, a pair of maternity pants
and of course the big project was the baguette baking, for our community dinner, it's a 4 hour's labor, but worth trying and i'm learning it slowly how to be patient and let the dough rise 4 times...
even the whole first floor got a good sweeping
the kids got their music practice with me listening actively to their songs
together with naomi we made fairies, she got a little flower fairies kit from the library and we love to sit together and pick out the beautyful fabric flower pedals, wooden beads for the fairies heads etc...
o and i forgot lunch, grilled pork chops, corn and a fresh garden salad with ice tea
sorted out the books we will need to get from the library to get us started with early american history. i'm very much looking forward to learn about pocahontas, north american indians, reading a lion to guard, white buffalo's story of plains indian life, pedro's journal and many more...
helping the kids to find their pace through the day without being too directive! yes that's a big one, but i'm convinced that it is really important for them to learn to have time and do what they want to. maybe more often to find out what they want to do with the time without us parents telling them... because i'm not listening anymore to the "i'm bored"
i'm tired now and debating if it's time to go to bed... maybe some reading

August 8, 2008

the xylophone

as i already posted about the violin workshop we attended the past few days, here an other fun moment.
amos and i went for some short walks to forest hills cemetery. this wonderful xylophone was one of the sculptures in the cemetery.
we had fun playing and reading the words on the bars, making up our own verses.

a bit further in the cemetery on we also found the bronze nests,

the tree was just to wonderful not to be climbed. i'm sure we will go back and do some more exploring, be it for natures sake or finding trees to climb!

August 7, 2008

violin workshop

this week is shaped by the violin workshop we participate in. elias leaves the house by 7:30am, which is super early for our days, usually that's the time we start turning in our beds to get up some half hour later. naomi, amos and i are then having breakfast some time after eight, we are able to take it slower as we don't have to hop on our bikes before 10am.
we bike over to the park, as our violin workshop is held at an outdoor location. it's a lot of fun running around the woods and play surrounded by green trees and shrubs.
of course snack is the time the three of us don't want to miss so we show up for that and then start with masterclass for elias and naomi together with their friends. amos participates in the musicianship class he takes a little accordeon along, as he can't bring his piano, that works well. it's a lot of fun to experience how music is learned in such a green and natural enviornment. very playful and so naturally occuring for the children, just the way we really whished to be growing up. thank you to all the teachers who make it possible, to give ouf kids this fantastic opportunity.
once more living in the city doesn't mean we can't bike, we can! and we also enjoy the green spaces available, it seems like we live in a big park...

August 6, 2008

birthday garland

it started all out, with a creative burst last thursday. all of a sudden i felt inspired and energized to get started on a birthday project for our middle boy...
the cutting was fun, picking through all the small pieces or fabric with naomi's help.

the sewing went fast, everything had to be quick and i even found a long enough hemp string to sew all the little flags on to.

sunday morning, the first thing i did, was hanging the garland in our kitchen. it is still up and really brightened up my morning. sunshine with a hint of rain in the air, i didn't want to risk a drenched birthday party and our kitchen was cleaned up enough for the day.

mid afternoon, the cake all decorated and candles ready set to go.

we are blessed with a very deep thinker.... yes that's truly amos personality.
happy birthday 7 year old boy!

August 5, 2008


our little friend a is loving the cuboro blocks. we all do, but he has such a love for them. it was very quiet for a long time, i had to check in a few times to make sure he was not missing. of course the nice hardwood blocks are great fun to build anything.
our boys as well as papa like to construct some fabulous marble tracks. it's definitely one of the most loved "toys" in the house. we got the basic set as a gift two years ago and have added some complementary since then. there is also a book with tracks to build, which is really a lot of fun too. it's a good starting point to branch out into all kinds of fantastic constructions....

August 4, 2008

naomi's quilt is done

it was so much fun quilting with the machine. doing all the swirls, or snails as the kids call them. the challenge was tho keep the stitch somewhat even in it's length. it was so quick, i was done a lot faster then i expected.

this is how the different squares look, uneven swirls which really give it a nice textured look.

the back is fun too. the fabric really plays well with the swirls and the stripes of different fabric are being softened with the quilting now done.
the satin binding is fabulous. naomi loves it's texture and that's what's count, at least for her. i like the colour and it's shininess...
i'm glad i had some of it left after the last quilt i did and it was enough, about one foot was left of the ready made stripes...
it's all done now and naomi has already used it last night, she loves it and i'm very happy too.

August 2, 2008

lego blocks

our friend came over for a quick visit after a trip to philadelphia....
we all looked at the tread she offered us! lego block candy!!!

the blocks didn't just look good, although the color was not as intense as the real lego blocks, but the sizing was very accurate and they even allowed us to build little things.
yes our friend is good for special surprises for the young at heart.
thank you c.

i looked at the candy catalog from branson, and wow there are some really fun and retro ones available, take a look yourself. and oops, i found an other place who carries them... candys confections

August 1, 2008

our neighborhood

a warm summer evening is seeing it's end....
there is not much more to say about this, we like to enjoy some spectacular sunset even in the city!
and this morning a new start with a very bright sun. we were out biking at 7:30am.... which probably done just a handful of days in the year. but it was nice, naomi and amos enjoyed it, and the racoon found it's friend again. (our friend a was the one really appreciating our early morning ride to his house...)