December 28, 2011

a short walk to the casturum

it was a wonderful visit at our friends house, delicious food, fun playtime, good conversations and a short walk to the castrum of irgenhausen at pfaeffikon.
we absolutely enjoy the few off days "in between", it's the perfect time to visit and being visited. being family and enjoy a leisurely morning, sleeping in and do what we want to do. though with some plans we could not totally forget the day and time we are living in.... which some moments this morning i absolutely would have wanted. but as soon as we walked into our friends house all the hustle bustle which we went through to get out of the house was forgotten and we just enjoyed the rest of the day.
we have never been at this particular roman ruin, and it turned out to be just the perfect afternoon to head out and enjoy it. o well i realized once more how beautiful my homeland is! again and again i'm at awe looking at the mountains. i will never get tired of seeing them, never ever wanting to forget the look at them from afar and thinking of hiking them in the summer once more.

i'm signing off from this space for the next five days. we are heading out to our community friends at communitaet don camillo, i'll b back on tuesday.

December 27, 2011

holding on...


wanting to keep the carols going, wanting to hold on to the bright smiles the joy and love we have with our families and friends. lots of preparations went on until christmas eve. walking up to the church and sing with the family choir for a whole full house and with all the joy in our hearts about the birth of our savior, the messiah.

a late car ride to my parents, a wonderful day with sunshine and very dramatic skies! cousins to play with, and presents to enjoy. sharing meals and sharing stories, more singing and lot's of thanksgiving in our hearts.

December 23, 2011

A Friday ritual.
A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by SouleMama. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

December 22, 2011

it's turning into a coaster of sorts

naomi has been working on a craft we didn't really knew what it will end up being...
over the weekend she started colouring the valori wells fabric with fabric markers and added some simple stitching to it. i liked it a lot and of course she was all over it. today we took the free afternoon and spent some time brainstorming ideas what it could become. and here we go, sewing some heavy twill backings two of them to make it thick enough for a hot pot to sit on it on the table. then turn it and machine quilt it. first she wanted to just do one line at the outer end, then she really got into machine sewing and could not end until the whole pad was line-quilted.
it looks great and we both are certain, grandma will love it.

it didn't take long until big brother showed up and wanted to get to work with the machine too. fine, let's ramble and so he did, cutting fabric and picking thread to sew. before i could turn around he was in the middle of a project. i love those afternoons, they are not that frequent, as the kids are in school most days. christmas vacation is around the corner, two more days of school and there we are. this will give all of us some time to just be and do and follow our creative ideas. absolutely important and not to be dismissed if  you ask me.


December 21, 2011

the "skirtlet"

on one of my strolls through the city i stopped by a little corner store at steinberggasse "mymake" is it called and a hand full of local seamstresses and artists are selling their goods at this place. i love almost every single item in this store (it is not huge...) and have bought a hat for thea last winter, a paper chicken for my mom last spring and some other very nice items to wear.
as i stopped by in early october i saw this wonderful fabric, an old linen, red and white, i just loved it and since it didn't move out of my mind. i had to get hold of a piece of clothing made with this fabric. so then a couple weeks later stopping by again my yearning was being stilled by this "skirtlet". though as it was a bit too big, and i was just to leave town for two weeks i had to wait til early november to get the wonderful piece of clothing.
i'm so very happy wearing it and feel so very connected with my grandmothers (as it is about their style of dish towels as well as the age of the fabric). thank you mymake folks for making such unique and special garments.
it has been on my mind for a long time to do this post, though taking a photo of me wearing the garment has taken a long while, thank you joel for doing so.

December 20, 2011

a list keeps me sane

its a few days until christmas and of course the festive meal is planned, a few friends invited, though no details arranged yet. that's ok, my list is in a constant growing phase with some to dos being crossed off now and then. i'm fine with that, i love lists and i live with lists, they seem second nature to me. and of course what would i do without lists!
this happen just an hour ago, i went to the grocery store and realized in despair, that i forgot the shopping list on the shoe shelf in our hallway. but even just having written the list has been very helpful, after the shopping upon checking what i forgot on my list, it turned out that i did get 3/4 of the items, not too bad, i will go out again in two days to finish up this weeks shopping.

December 19, 2011

i have been working on a little house idea and love it. it's a nice change from the socks i'm working on. and the tea mug rug's idea seems like a nice gift to bring along to dinner hosts on our christmas travels. there still need a few more stitches to be made...

though those stitches will be made and even better with the snow finally coming down it's wonderful to stay inside, light a candle and sit with a cup of hot tea on my side and keep my hands busy.

sleeping in on sunday morning was such a treat. a very late breakfast made us to skip lunch but the have a nice fruit snack mid afternoon. the dates went the fastest... they were very delicious and of course a special treat around christmas, as we try to stay local 3/4 of the year. winter is really the time of year, when i buy exotic fruit, other times we do with pears and apples and berries.

lots of crafting and wrapping up the made surprises, elias is almost done. or maybe he will start an other batch of cookies tomorrow, never know with him.

naomi has just yesterday started a new idea, i'm very curious to what this will develop. somehow i feel like this is ending up in more work last minute. i will already put some time aside for those ideas...

i got those wooden balls last year on a sale and i do love them even though they are very heavy and don't really lend themselves to be hung on a tree. making up some ribbons from an old table runner is working now just fine and i will find a little spot in the hall to hang them. there is still more decorating going on in the house and of course the baking of christmas cookies has not ended...

December 16, 2011

{this moment)

A Friday ritual.
A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by SouleMama. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

December 15, 2011

living life together

one of our house mates is leaving and of course we have to sit together once more and enjoy a delicious meal. m was cooking in her indonesian way, sticky rice, curried chicken, peanut sauce and papaya salad. preparing the salad was lots of work, as all the ingredients were put in a pestle and worked together, green beans, tomatoes, peanuts, green papaya (not fully ripened), garlic and spices. the decoration was plain and simple but very cute, little parchment paper bags with tea lights in the middle of the table.
the food was eaten only with the fingers. such a delight for all of us, so much fun and of course the kids were in the game no time.

living together with a bunch of people is fun and on those special evenings even more of a treat. thank all of you folks, being committed to live life together.
of course this is a happy peak into our kitchen, and i'm glad to let you in. there are other moments, when we have to work out differences, be it the laundry schedule, personal preferences or feelings being hurt. moments of pain and it seems so far fetched to go through those struggles, though more often then not, in the aftermath it's wonderful to see growth and peace and new horizons springing up.
all this is important and we do it as we believe it's our calling. and we are able to live life in community, knowing that we are able to love and forgive and enjoy community through christ.

December 14, 2011

lots of sweets in our kitchen

there were lots of walnuts in our saint nicholas bags... what better to do as to open all of them and eat as much as you like and then get the rest made into a very delicious christmas cookie. that's exactly what we did this afternoon.
they are called "baumnuss busserl" (walnut smooch) a very cute name for a cookie. and of course it tastes wonderful, all of us, except elias, he would not even look at it.

instead of fretting over cookies he "couldn't eat" elias started his own. melting chocolate and a bit butter in a hot water bath, add some vanilla sugar and a good mount of cornflakes and mix very gently. super easy, to make those yummy treats, just make little mounts on a parchment paper. it was fun to watch him and give him the little hint to not overheat the chocolate...
there were so many times i made those cornflake crisps and the chocolate got to hot and of course it got all crummy and the result looked awful or didn't even make it cover the flakes. he did well and the sheets are now in the cellar to do "cool and dry out". i'm glad he got the opportunity to get to work in the kitchen, as his time is definitely scarce when it comes to baking.

i could not keep this shot from you, isn't she just cute our cookie monster...

December 12, 2011

the gift of her's

what a cool gift, going shopping with your godmother and not just to any old grocery store but to the coolest toy store in town...
it was not easy to pick something special, there was so much of interest to her. though after a long while, of course it had to be a doctors kit, and indeed it's a wonderful little suitcase with important tools and a real stethoscope!

of course there must be patients in the house. yes of course amos loves to be cured of all kinds of ailments. though he didn't just get his broken arm repaired, thea got hold of a syringe and 'sucked' him something or an other "out" of his belly, until the poor patent was screaming of pain. from that moment on it was not doctors naomi and thea but the consoling words of papa who helped him to get better.

more tangerines and sweets and peanuts and walnuts on the table,

and didn't we all enjoy those goodies with a cup of tea (or coffee) and having very involved discussions about the world, life and swiss politics. i love my extended family and a weekend with them is one of the best things happening to me. of course the kids played their own games and naomi's doctor gear got taken out uncountable times, not just by her, but together with her big brother and the 14 year old cousin. it was a pleasure to see the kids so involved in their pretend play as well as old games and sports competitions outdoors. it was a weekend full of energy and that was definitely needed on my end.
thank you ma and pa for hosting us all.


the photos are the result of a stroll with the camera, yesterday afternoon, taken by joel...
there is really nothing more to say, a wonderful mysterious world of trees.


December 9, 2011

{this moment}

A Friday ritual.
A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Inspired by SouleMama. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

December 8, 2011

at moonrise

or should i call it, at sunset? yes that first one is sunset, it's in front of the house and it just struck me how pretty tonight's sky is. i'm so very grateful for the picture unfolding in front of my eyes. not every evening is like that, but a lot of them are. i'm not aware most evenings, that i should take a momen, stop what i'm doing and gaze at the sky...
be in front of the house, or behind the house toward the east to see the moon rise! o so full and round so clear and bright. as elias collects the eggs from the coop i quickly take the camera and keep a little memory of this wonderful "lantern" up there in the sky, rising and shining brightly all night long.

December 7, 2011

in our kitchen

we have been busy the past few days

:: cooking soup for dinner is one of my favorite activities. root vegetables and what ever needs to be eaten from the fridge

:: cooking for fewer people as some of folks of our community have left the past few weeks. instead of 13 people we are now just aobut 10 people sitting regularly around the kitchen table

:: the big two kitchen helpers have been very busy with christmas cookie making. here it's the "basler brunsli"

:: an other evening, when the girls sat around the kitchen table to make "gewuerz igeli" and "schokolade kugeln"
the filled tin boxes are slowly getting more and more in the basement.

:: sitting down with a mug of hot spiced cider and enjoyed to read a story  to thea

:: homework has been on the more creative side for the kids. amos was the most fortunate, his teacher wanted the kids to either do their math homework or bring a little sampler bag of the home made christmas cookies.... (i really liked that one)

:: tomorrow is german conversation group with the neighborhood women, we will be making sugar cookies... the dough is ready and decoration candy will come out tomorrow as it would have been super hard to keep the kids from wanting to do the cookies already!

:: with advent being in full swing, it's heart warming to enjoy the for now two candles being lit on our wreath. with that reminder christmas is not far anymore...

December 6, 2011

ballet at the stadttheater

it is the 6th of december and we celebrate saint nicholas day. this year there is no visit planned by the "samichlaus", as we planned to attend the ballet performance of elias dance school.

a new white shirt was on my shopping list just a couple days ago. i didn't realize how much elias has grown in the past two years, there was no way for him to fit in the old shirt.

he did not tell me anything about that funny hat, i almost laughed out loud when i saw him coming onto the stage. though with the white boots, he looked great.

and performed so nicely. it's fun to see him with all his passion and loving it.

thank you simone and all the dancers and helpers for the good work and fun performance you showed us.