November 17, 2017

the week :: through the lens

it has been on the back burner, i have not been taking a lot of photos for a while now, and that should change. so i put the "hand made" lens back on the camera body and got started this week. it touched me in a special way, as i wander and have the camera ready be it in the kitchen, or living room table... this enables me to see with new eyes and i like it. we will see if it sticks, it is a start to a new friday review of what caught my eye. there is to be said, that i was inspired by erin boyle and her blog "reading my tea leaves". she does a wonderful job and it is so inspirational to have a look at her photos...

:: 1. apples all over, i love them baked or cooked or just like that.

:: 2. november afternoon, the light is faint.

:: 3. it's pumpkin time in our veggie box.

:: 4. to ease tention and keep calm in the storm.

:: 5. what a wonderful pile of linnen, a friend has been thinking of me and i look forward to new projects in the coming weeks of long evenings.

November 15, 2017

november

it's november and the cold has hit home. fine with me, as the sun is still warming the air in the afternoons and that let's me go out and run.
as i was visiting my parents yesterday, thea and i left our house when it was still all grey and very fogy. though not for long, the train took us eastwards and out of the fog. it was wonderful to observe and enjoy the change of scenery. of course there is something special about the november fog, but really i do enjoy the afternoon sunshine more. i do really make an effort to go out and work in the garden or as i sad, go and run...
there are lots of potatoes and all kinds of cabbage and kale on the table, cooked, baked, sauteed...
it's the last from out there, and i enjoy the dark greens the most, the so called "dinosaur-kale"

November 14, 2017

lots of crêpe

it was a windy and rainy afternoon, for everyone a day to stay put and enjoy the warm living room. lots of yummy food, in our case it was an afternoon of eating crêpe. there were topings, from sauce bolognese to pesto, and cooked pears, nutella or caramel sauce, coconut flakes and mapel syrup. what ever one can dream of...

we spent the hours with friends and loved it. joel got the fire going and at some point there was life music too... of course if we have the two musicians over...
thank you friends for coming and being with us.



November 13, 2017

she turned 9

o dear THEA Clare, we sang a loud and joyful happy birthday! for you, as you turned nine yesterday. it was a fun sunday morning with you and the o so longed for sneakers...
such an adventure with you dear thea, lots of laughter, lots of drama be it happy or troublesome, sad or o-so-joyful, we enjoy having you in our family.

starting to celebrate already on saturday, the super cozy dress was a must to wear for the birthday day. and the smarties have been eaten even before breakfast started... it's our thea, she is in with every bit of herself and takes us along on her journey.
all the energy, the exhuberant emotion makes every day so special and an adventure.

thank you Thea for celebrating with us and finding a wonderful end of the celebration too...

November 9, 2017

mini apple pies

after a somewhat busy morning, i felt like taking the time to bake has come this afternoon. and the season of apple pie is upon us. it was wonderful to make a crust. every time the kitchen machine is crumbling up the butter and mixing it with the flour and salt, while adding some ice water, it is fun to watch how it all comes together so smoothly marbled.
cutting apples and adding the spices never goes by without me tasting not just a few apple cubes but there has to be a lot "left over" as i absolutely delight that taste of spiced apples. usually i use cinnamon, vanilla sugar, allspice and ground clove. and as it turnes out, i sipped on my black tea while finishing up the "left over" apples, the kids where not home yet some classical music was playing in the back ground and sitting on the counter, with the mini pies all in the oven, i savoured the moment.
yup those moments stay with me, not just tonight but i hang on to them. especially while the speed of november is picking up around me and i want to stay calm, be still at moments when it all threatens to tumble over and around me.




November 8, 2017

the fall up date

the year in it's last third, the past three months have just been rushing by. lot's has happened and i enjoy my teaching job, is exciting and i love the kids as well as the subject. it does take a lot of my time, to get the lessons ready as i have to "präp" from scratch...
the running is still a wonderful time on most days. it does take me a little kick in the butt to get out of the door, but as soon as i'm out, i love it and it gives me the needed energy for the day. often it's a good time to reflect on harder issues and keeps me actively thinking and not seldom i find new and creative ways of looking at a subjects or relationships. it is a good tool to keep focused on the to me important issues. running has definitely become a means to know how i'm doing all over. and so is cooking too. if i'm up to cooking and baking i'm doing well, i not just feel inspired but i also am able to take the time to act on it. those two things have been cut short the past 6 months, and i'm just now getting back into a rhythm which suits me well.

and here is the list for now::

1. finish A's quilt as well as the other one, both are sandwiched, it should be a matter of a few weeks...
- A's target quilt is all done and in use every night since early july

2. hand in the papers a couple weeks after finishing the course.
- so far so good, both papers due so far have been handed in early and the one for early july is at a friends for proof reading was handed in on time. the grades the earlier ones are back and i'm happy about the results so far.

3. practice the ukulele twice a week
nowhere there, but playing a bit more regular as i do acompany the singing in my religion class on wednesday afternoons

4. sewing the linen pants i have in mind

5. buy a beeswax-wrap and figure out how to do it my self...
- it just so happened, that a friend of mine was in munich and was able to stop by this store, he got me a set of wraps and i use them and am very happy. and even better, you can get them now in switzerland at change maker, as well as bare ware, for a reasonable prize!

6. visit the gewerbemuseum in the city, to see this and the münzkabinett for this
i have been at the "bike-city-design" exhibit with an old friend of mine, he was in town for a few days. we had a wonderful time and it was inspiring.

7. go on a two day get away with naomi

8. knit, crochet or sew at least one project a month
- the hat for myself
- thea's dress
- naomi's skirt
- finished up an old project, the potholde
- finished the target quilt
- knitt two fairy dust cardigans

9. stop by this store in zurich

10. rent a snow board for a few days in february, when we are in adelboden
- i did rent a snow board for 5 days and i was super happy and everything hurt, but i learned a new skill and i will improve on it next year.

11. say not quickly no to the kids, but pause and then respond
this one is a real challenge, but just yesterday i was really doing well, not letting my own ego and my short tempered nature get it's way. it takes me a deep breath and an second deep breath, maybe even a third one. but i'm practicing and see it as a little success, if i'm able to not say no, right away.

12. read good books
- die Attentäterin, Yasmina Khadra
- the Freedom of Self Forgetfulness, Timothy Keller
- hör nicht auf zu singen, Rebecca Giselbrecht, Sabine Scheuter
- Lilac Girls, by Marhta Hall Kelly
- the last Song, by Nicholas Sparks
- zwei bemerkenswerte Frauen, by Tracy Chevalier
- the Chameleon's Shadow, by Milette Walters
- Verspottet, geachtet, geliebt - die Frauen der Reformatoren, by Ursula Koch
- Ulrich Zwingli: Prophet, Ketzer, Pionier des Protestantismus, by Peter Opitz
- Zankapfel Bibel, by Ulrich Lutz
- A good American, by Alex George
- "Solange wir leben, müssen wir uns entscheiden", Jehuda Bacon/Manfred Lütz
- The Audacity of hope, Barack Obama
- Kochen im Hause Luther, Thomas Correll
- Gestillt Nachtgespräche mit David, Daniel Zindel
- Simple Matters, Erine Boyle

13. have dinner out, with friends or just joel, for a change....
- at the beginning of july, we went with our friends to rhodos, a wonderful greek place in the city

14. don't buy any plastic bottles (water, tea, etc.)
- so far so good, though i caught myself already a handful of times wanting to get a drink and then realizing, that i don't have my travel mug along. so i abstained.... maybe some good thing too
- ups, we had to buy water up at the SAC hut, as there is no potable water available... seems hard to believe but that's what it is

15. carry the bamboo mug i own in my hand bag, to use at any given time for take away beverages
- yes i do well with this one

16. organize a little house concert for our friends and neighbors

17. go on a two or three day hike with joel, a week in the dolomites is in the planning for july
- we didn't make it out of country.... but chose to go on a four day hike, staying in three different sac huts, it was fantastic, look here

18. run 25-30km a week and participate in a race
- i ran the 10k at the winterthur marathon event... and it looks bright with the 25km a week, though not much more, and definitely not 30km. i had to start with hip strengthening exercises as i noticed that the hip is my week point as soon as i run 25km plus, a week. so there we go, getting to know my own body a bit better once more.

19. be especially patient and supportive with Thea practicing the cello
- this is coming along and now knowing that she does need a special portion of patience. it helps in taking that extra effort. she is doing well and it really is her instrument. i do better with the patience and have come up with creative ideas and ways to practice music.

20. watch a good movie in the theater, with a friend

21. write snail mail birthday cards, no emails, no sms, no what's up, neither count blog comments...
- this is coming along well, though i'm skipping some not very close friends, but decided that this is fine with me, just sending out a letter with a little present and i do smile while putting this in the mail. uups, there were a few friends getting their well wishes via email.... sorry, but live has been a bit hectic lately...

22. enjoy the garden with our chickens and try getting some veggies of the ground
- the chickens are fun and laid a lot this spring and with the veggies, i got three little wooden crates going with a pumpkin plant and cucumbers and some butterfly plants (fenchelkraut)
i do enjoy the garden, harvested two cucumbers, no pumpkin and istead of the fennel greens, there are stinging nettle.... which, i have to say, the little flowering parts are very rich in iron and i eat them directly from the plant, thank you mother nature.

23. try new recipes, chines noodles and things, more fermented vegetables and carrots and lebanese spices. maybe borek and other kinds of food from the balkans.
- a yummy noodle salad with cashews and tofu has become the girls favorit this summer
- just today a marbled banana-chocolate cake has been made. i know this is in now way fermented or filled with vegetables, though still new and special to me.
- today i made tahini/carrot muffins with coconut oil and they tasted yummy a good and healthy breakfast type of food (not dessert, as it is not rich or sweet :)

24. finish the quilt granny squar quilt from four summers ago....

25. participate with a decorated window on the 8th of december for the neighborhood advents-calendar.

26. be still and pray when every thing is getting stressed out and hectic around me

27. buy a small boom box to carry along to class
- did it, elias helped me to figure out which one i should choose. and i'm happy with the ue roll-2 it will be put to good use tomorrow for some harp music, as we get to know david the boy sheppherd and king. I learned to pair my fairphone to the ue roll-2 and feel like it's easy to do.... :)

November 7, 2017

darkness brings magic

what is this?

nothing really, it just is what you see. lines of light, easy to come up with in a dark night. though not just the darkness needs to be here, also some random sources of light. take the camera out and take some photos with long exposure times, move the camera body around and start playing.
it's lots of fun and it looks different every time i take a picture. trying to the twice the same playful lines is kind a hard, but try and you will see.

i like those lines and as we just switched back from daylight savings, the evenings are early the nights seem long. it definitely is the time of year, when darkness could take over. though it is just the beginning of the dark and long nights, it is november and i'm getting used to bundle up and stay warm. knitting and wearing knitts is helping, drinking lots of tea and then there is the light, warm shining light of a candle. sitting in the living room everyone working on this or that, practicing music or finishing up some home work. we are being drawn inward, closer to each other and that, i like.

November 6, 2017

pumpkin soup :: pofta buna

pumpkin season is upon us. all over the kitchen is this wonderfully orange color to be seen, cut and shredded, baked and cooked into deliciouse foods.
this time i made soup, a new kind of soup for me. it was a recipe which called for orange juice and not quiet as much creme as i was using in the past. on top of it all, it was an easy one to memorize, as i asked the chef at the restaurant what the ingredients were. of course he didn't give away the recipe, but he was kind enough to tell me the list of ingredients.
pumpkin, i chose two of my red kuris, their meat is flavorfull and so pretty orange. lots of onions and some minced garlic sauteed in a flavorfull olive oil (maybe the next time i use coconut butter, just for a change). add the pumpkin cubes and keep sauteeing, add curry powder to it, use the kind you like and i added a bit more kurkuma powder. then as much liquid as needed, using for halfe of it vegetable broth and the other half orange juice. after adding the broth, purree the cubes until it's all smooth and then add the orange juice. taste the soupe and add what ever spices, like some salt and nutmeg as well as sea salt until it's a nice strong tasting soup, don't forget at the end a dolup of heavy creame rounds it all up to a nice pumpkin taste with that orange taste you don't usually find in the every day pumpkin-creme-soup...
:: Poftă bună!

November 3, 2017

the week :: through the lens

it has been on the back burner, i have not been taking a lot of photos for a while now, and that should change. so i put the "hand made" lens back on the camera body and got started this week. it touched me in a special way, as i wander and have the camera ready be it in the kitchen, or living room table... this enables me to see with new eyes and i like it. we will see if it sticks, it is a start to a new friday review of what caught my eye. there is to be said, that i was inspired by erin boyle and her blog "reading my tea leaves". she does a wonderful job and it is so inspirational to have a look at her photos...

:: 1. my new pair of shoes, campers to be exact and i got them for less then half price. yupi

:: 2. the humus making in process, o we all loved the result.

:: 3. relax and be, even better with a slice of cake

:: 4. moss is soft and comforting

November 1, 2017

time for bulbs

this wonderful autumn day had to be lived out of doors....
and so it was perfect for some yard work to get done. raking leafs and piling them all up in one corner shold help the hedge hog to find a home again. i say again, as the gardeners cleaning up around the house, didn't listen to my instructions to leave the big pile of branches and leafs just as it was. they ment well but from my perspective, they took the hedge hogs home away! that can't be, and that's why we are "building a new home" for those animal friends of mine.
the second joyful task was, to put lots of bulbs into the ground. i love doing this, as spring will bring lots of color and joy to me. and putting the bulbs into the soil, is lots of fun too. similar as in past years, thea is quick to help me with the work. the two of us, of course, are debating how we should arrange the colors and what kinds of bulbs we should put in where, these is some fun discussion and finding out of thea's opinion is an easy and exciting task aniway...


October 27, 2017

the week :: through the lens

it has been on the back burner, i have not been taking a lot of photos for a while now, and that should change. so i put the "hand made" lens back on the camera body and got started this week. it touched me in a special way, as i wander and have the camera ready be it in the kitchen, or living room table... this enables me to see with new eyes and i like it. we will see if it sticks, it is a start to a new friday review of what caught my eye. there is to be said, that i was inspired by erin boyle and her blog "reading my tea leaves". she does a wonderful job and it is so inspirational to have a look at her photos...

:: 1. my golden chrisanthemum, right in front of the entrance to the house

:: 2. the geranium, still hanging inthere

:: 3. the last of the tomatos

:: 4. the calendula is bright and orange, popping up and loving the autumn sun

:: 5. and this is the moss on the chestnunt tree, it loves the moist air and grows wild

October 26, 2017

pretty vegetables

and yet they are not just good to look at, they are already smelling deliciouse while preparing. i frequently get "old" vegetables from a retale store near my parents and those verggies usually don't look supper nice anymore. but you can say what you want, they still look great and smell ripe and ready to be put on the table.
i love vegetable stews, the kids not really.... but still i cook them and over a wonderful dish of basmati rice, that stew last night was deliciouse. fresh basel, soaked chick peas, corn cut from the cob, i think it can't get much better. the kids though, they topped the dinner stew with a big spoon or two or three of grated cheese. well, it's alright, if this makes them eat and like it, then let them do it as much as they want!

and of course, you don't see them, there is a bunch of fresh little onions and three cloves of garlic. all of it already glazing in olive oil...


October 24, 2017

the toothbrush

the toothbrush is not really new in the city's "graben". it is a very nice area of the old city center and absolutely inviting to play around and hang out.
we have been there and enjoyed the "park" a lot, especially the by gone aera of "holidi"...
lots of climbing by all the kids and discussions about this giant wooden man lying on the ground. since almost 4 years now we have a replacement sculpture, the "toothbrush". that is what we all call this new hide and seek place.

today thea and i walked the area and of course we needed to stop and enjoy the fun "toothbrush". thea loves it and she really doesn't even need me to have fun! walking through, peaking out to the left and then again to the right, or all through the middle. being seen or rather not seen, seems plain fun enough for her.
we both love sculptures with "a purpos", by that i mean to say, sculputers to use and climb and hid within or above, underneath or behind. places and objects to implement easely into the imaginary play of kids (or grown ups also....)
thank you, dear city of winterthur, to create such fun places, we love thee!


October 23, 2017

burgers are special

we are not a family, eating burgers regularely. it's about once or twice a year, when the time is just right and all the ingredients are in the house as the idea gets stewed, of grilling burgers...
and so it was this past weekend. just right and everything needed in the house.
joel in the spirit of making a fire for grilling and fresh juicy tomatoes on the window sill, waiting to be enjoyed, some lettuce and lots of different sauces to choose from. even spicy sauteed peppers were on hand and then for the ones of us who really like a warm side dish, there was "kraut" i made it from blue cabagge with a bit of cider, so it was not soure at all.
it might have been one of the last opportunities this autumn to sit outside for dinner, not yet in the dark and still without having to wrap up in a warm woolen sweater. that kind of weather has approached today and yes i would not want to sit outside tonight, in a drizzle and the dark cool air...

i had my "joel assembled" lens on the camera body, and yes really love the result.
Canon Lens FL 55mm 1:12 (with selfmade paper rim)


October 20, 2017

the week :: through the lens

it has been on the back burner, i have not been taking a lot of photos for a while now, and that should change. so i put the "hand made" lens back on the camera body and got started this week. it touched me in a special way, as i wander and have the camera ready be it in the kitchen, or living room table... this enables me to see with new eyes and i like it. we will see if it sticks, it is a start to a new friday review of what caught my eye. there is to be said, that i was inspired by erin boyle and her blog "reading my tea leaves". she does a wonderful job and it is so inspirational to have a look at her photos...
:: 1. tuesday evening

:: 2. dinner at our friends house, o so delicious and nurturing

:: 3. having a good time with Amos and Naomi in Zurich

:: 4. my sister in law gifted me with her own wool!
 
:: 5. and i got package returned to me, which i sent out to south-africa on may 8th.... well i will send it again and we will see and wait

October 19, 2017

fountains in zurich

i had to drop off some books a library in zurich today. the trip into the city could not just consist of, returning books, there had to be a bit more to it. amos and naomi decided yesterday, that the two of them would acompany me. what to do with two teenagers in a big city, which they don't know and i don't just wanted to run from one brand name store to an other. there was bit of looking around on my side, and quickly, the idea was born to walk by fountains. the city's water department has those really cool and useful maps of wells and fountains. i printed the one for "kreis 1", the area i had to go for returning the books.
of course, naomi thought it very boring and not needed, to have a plan. but i didn't just want to drop my so creative idea, of discovering a new place... and yes all those fountains and many more (1200 on city grounds) have drinking water! (and an other nice page to read about fountains in zurich)

we had a good time and really enjoyed the walk in the wonderful autumn sun of today -my birthday-

:: manessebrunnen from 1931, the sculpture is made out of rock from bodio, GR

:: stüssibrunnen 1575, the only fountain in zurich with multiple colors, with stüssi towering on top of it, he was the first mayor of the city.

:: schipfe

:: winzerbrunnen 1908, this is a replica of the fountain in bruck an der mur (1626 steiermark austria). it honors the place where there has been taken place the wine trade of the city

:: geiserbrunnen 1911, designed by jakob brüllmann a native of weinfelden (eastern switzerland) and known for his works of war memorials after the first world war in gemrany.

:: kleiner brunnen mit möve 1938, by otto münch

:: wasserspiel - sechseläutenplatz 2013, very cool and tempting to run through the wonderful squirting water...