Archive of ‘Home Life’ category
Hi! Remember me? Camera Latte? That super fun blog with tons of cute photos of Little Lue and random ramblings about my mommy days? Yeah… Hi…
Somewhere mid pregnancy I cracked. Totally cracked.
I’m going to be honest, this move has been hard on me, us. The wonderful sunny days in Key West still call my name. Lucy still asks to “Go home” most days when we are about to get in the car, deep down I know where she means. Lately she’s been asking about the ocean and how she can’t wait to see it. I have no idea where she gets it from it’s obvious to me she misses her old home too.
On top of that the past 6 months have been riddled with uncertainty and confusion as we explored a change in our lives that never materialized. And in the mist of all that, TDYs and deployments have been scheduled, and all you Significant Others know how that goes…
So somewhere between getting ready for a new baby, still getting used to living in a new place, random life stress, and then actually giving birth, I set my camera down and stopped taking pictures.
I stopped running. I stopped writing. I stopped reading. Just stopped.
And in the chaos of meeting our new daughter, Princess P, I just felt lost. With her amazing loving gaze the only thing keeping me together.
It’s been over 2 months since she was born and the smoke is starting to clear. I’ve laced up my running shoes a few times, dusted off my camera longingly, and tried several times to write something half way coherent. But I’m still not quite there yet, I still don’t feel like myself.
I’ve been blaming hormones for my emotional roller coaster, but the truth is that this year has been packed full of stress, and it’s still just the tip of the iceberg for us.
So no, I haven’t taken very many photos. And no, I haven’t quite been my cheerful self. But I’m here, chugging along, waking up every day looking for that change in the winds.
Little Lue is amazing, she’s changing so much and so quickly. She’s 3 years old now?! Can you believe it?! And my littlest Princess P is incredible, just perfect. They both truly are my little rainbows over these past stormy months.
So… A tad melancholy today, and no photos… But that’s ok. Sometimes this is all I’ve got.
Anyone else having a rocky 2014?
It feels like forever since I was able to walk outside without a coat or jacket… And this past week I think it’s safe to say the weather is turning and Spring is HERE!! Sunshine and 50 degree weather, what more could I ask for?! (ok ok… so 80’s and a beach would be nice, but I will take the 50’s over 30-40 any day!!)
No jackets!!! YEAH!!
Butterflies and bees!!! YEAH!!!
Windows open all day!!! YEAH!!!
I am a happy camper…
Oh and look… Remember that huge chunk of land out behind the kitchen, that’s called a BACK YARD!! YES!!! lol
Digging in the dirt… Seriously I think this is the first time Lucy has ever actually PLAYED with dirt (and not sand) LOL!
Puppies in the sunshine
The wheelbarrow made everything more fun!
Oh look! My swing!
Picked some flowers to make a garden… I think we need to start our real garden now
Decided to bring the camera along this Thursday to our little activities. I have been traveling “light” lately and leaving the camera at home for most outings, but this doesn’t make for many opportunities for taking a few pics! So going to try a little harder to bring it along more often, specially now that the weather is starting to turn. Woot!
Thursdays is Dance Class day! We had taken a little break from dance class as well as gymnastics for a couple of months since Little Lue had been a little uncooperative in the mornings. But it wasn’t long before she started asking about dance class. So I decided to reenroll her and see if this time she would be a little more appreciative. We haven’t resumed the gymnastics though, I figured we would ease back in, and dance seemed to be more in tune with this child. She LOVES to DANCE.
So dance class is at 11am and only 30 minutes. So I have been also hitting up the library story time right before at 10am. Sometimes we make it in time, others, not so much. Thursday mornings is also Stroller Warriors! A new running club on base that my friend leads. But since I am getting pretty big now (woot woot 3rd trimester!) I haven’t been attending. I might try to make some meetings anyhow and do some mostly walking haha. We will see The weather has been so nice this past couple of weeks! It’s hard not to want to be outside. If you are local and want to get out running with a great group, go check them out!
But yeah, THIS particular morning we went to story time. And we were actually on time! Yeah!
This is one of the songs they sang, goes to the “Row row row your boat” song music. Pretty cute.
Actually sitting down for a story, progress!
And now we’re off to dance class!!
I seriously love Miss Kate, she does a fantastic job and is SO incredibly age appropriate. I really appreciate her.
Kiss your knees!
Wrangling up the dance crew LOL!
We always have fun props…
Dancing with a scarf
So fun <3
Happy New Year!!! Wow, is it already 2014?! Craziness!
I want to start blogging on some different topics this year. So what better time to start than now? So here’s it goes. No photos, just words
To start with I want to address something that I’ve noticed to be quite trendy in the mommy blogging world that is sometimes needed… but starting to get a little old…
So yeah… am I the only one who is pretty much done with the “complaining mom bloggers” fad? Here’s my take on this.
Motherhood is hard… Super draining… Life sucking… But for even those horrid days, those days where the house is destroyed, you ate total garbage, you vegged on the TV, and couch surfed for hours because you are so flipping exhausted of the same thing day in day out, your child(rend) decided to scream for what seems like most of the day, they tick, throw, bite, you cry in a conner wondering what you are doing wrong… Even on THOSE days, no mother will say they will trade that for anything else (well… not say it and mean it! LOL).
Why? Because the love we feel for our children is so immensely powerful that it becomes the air we breathe, the light in our day, the reason to get up and keep going. Because that love alone can sustain us. Because that love alone, is simply ENOUGH to make it all worth it. Because that love, and those small moments of bliss when you look at them sleeping, or playing nicely, or doing something new for themselves, those moment when your heart could explode with pride and aw and love, make even those bad days worth it.
Now mommies, lets rally together. Find friends, find family, find support! We are all in this together trying to survive the hard days. And we are all looking for a shoulder to lean on. I suspect that our worse days are days where we feel alone in this land of toys, dirty diapers, and messy faces. But let’s try and look at those faces we love and remember WHY every day we make the choice to get up and keep going.
And let’s go ahead and try to keep the complaining in check, yeah? It’s just unflattering. I hate doing it myself, even if we do HAVE to get it out. How about we get it out between friends over a cup of coffee instead of blasting the internet with so much negative energy that gets passed around over and over and over. I promise you, talking with a couple of close friends feels a WHOLE lot better than ranting on a blog (been there done both!). Let’s spread some positive mojo on the internet! Spread the stories about the moments that keep us going, the things that make us feel good about the work we have been given.
All of you, us, moms are so incredibly strong. Whether you stay at home all day with little ones and diapers and puke, or have to wrangle up kids to daycare and school and gymnastics and then yourself to work, you are an INCREDIBLY STRONG AND WONDERFUL MOTHER. Your children LOVE YOU and think you are FLIPPIN AMAZING and you ARE. Not only that, their innocent eyes that only see who you TRULY are see the most BEAUTIFUL, GORGEOUS, MOST PERFECT FEMALE FIGURE ON THIS PLANET. They do! So not only are you the BEST mother ever, the most AMAZING human ever, you are also the most BEAUTIFUL creature they could lay their young eyes on.
So keep on trucking through, momma… You got this. You are amazing. You are working SO hard to do what you do with little thanks or appreciation (heck, sometimes it feels like all we hear is how we are doing it wrong!). But I am a fellow mom. And I KNOW how hard you are working. Hats off to you. I support you, I think you are amazing, and I give you a HUGE thank you! Thank you for doing what is best for you and your family. Thank you for raising the children that will be my daughter’s coworkers, teammates, friends, lovers, family. Thank you for doing the best you can every single day. And if you need a shoulder to lean on, I am here for you, close friend or total stranger.
Now, ladies, let’s act like moms. And not like any mom, but like super moms. Because that’s what we all are, supper moms. Don’t get me started on the mommy wars. It’s not about HOW you do it, it’s about getting it DONE. You, we, are ALL amazing and doing the best we can for the children we are raising. No divisions! Just connections, support and understanding.
So let’s do it! Let’s fill the cyber space with some positive mommy vibes. Let’s talk about the things that connect us, make us strong and give us hope. Let’s gather and celebrate our strengths and not linger on our weaknesses. Yeah? Who’s with me?
So since we went to the husband’s Christmas party where Santa came and handed out gifts Little Lue finally made a connection she had previously missed. The boxes under the tree are GIFTS!
We had been keeping a few boxes under the tree that we knew were gifts under the tree… They were still in their mailing packaging, so Little Lue really hadn’t given them much attention the few days they were there. But after the party… She realized what they were… So she grabbed a box, brought it over to us and said “Christmas present!” in the most adorable toddler voice eva. “Open the door!”
I’m not very good at waiting myself… so what the heck… Let’s open one.
Well… This turned into opening a box every day LOL!! There are now no more boxes under the tree and we have saved the rest of the gifts for tomorrow morning, Christmas Day, but it was still fun to have her open a few things so that it’s not totally overwhelming Christmas morning. I’m glad she got to enjoy a few things without the craziness of opening 10 things at once haha.
So since most of these gifts came from Nana’s house and she MUST have pictures. I decided to document as best I could. 😉
Yessss! A car or “Brum brum”
I was a bit worried about all the tiny pieces, but she loves them! Fine motor skills 😉
Luna’s turn for a random portrait
And mommy playing with her camera again… haha
We finally found a neat place to buy our tree from!
For whatever reason, I vividly remember going out to pick out our Christmas tree. Our family always had a live tree and I so loved the smell and specialness of the Christmas tree. It was always an exciting and special day. And because I feel like just picking the tree is supposed to feel special, I really didn’t want to go to just anywhere to get it. I was hoping to find a local something to get a tree form other than Toom (German version of Home Depot/Lowes)… Although for a moment there it was looking like the best option!
Anyhow, I went out for a walk around the village and finally (I do say finally because this place was right on the main road) noticed this house that had a small sign that read “Weihnachten Baüme” Now… I had no idea what this meant, but it had a Christmas Tree picture, and I knew baum had something to do with plants, LOL, so I figured I’d walk into the drive way for a look. And sure enough right around the corner were a bunch of trees! Yay! It was pretty cool, the drive way snaked around his yard so it was like a little tree maze. He even had some smaller trees in pots, which I thought was pretty cool. The owner didn’t speak much english and unfortunately my German vocabulary is still quite small (minuscule really), but I was still able to get an average price and the times he was open. So later that evening we came back and picked out our tree!
Somehow I managed to pick out a massive tree… When it was laid down to be wrapped up I was tempted to say we needed a different one because, OMG, it looked HUGE. But it was too late. So we took our massive tree. The owner told us he has been selling trees in the village for 40 years! We happily told him we would come back next year. Lucy got a cookie and Duvi was not able to refuse the “schnapps”, haha, and away we went.
Back home is when I finally pulled out the camera. So here are some X-mas decorating photos <3
Soooo… Yeah, we had to chop off some trunk off the bottom to make it fit LOL!!! Glad we have a strong and persistent daddy 😉
A little ambience… 😉
I’m telling you, this thing was just massive. But it’s grown on me hahaha…
Everyone waiting patiently haha
Random Bongo portrait <3 My baby is so cute!
Aha! He did it! Go daddy!!!
Open up the treeeee…
Putting up the star… Can anyone find the very first ornament on the tree? 😉
The lights were quite exciting!
All done!! It’s a little wonky looking… But I still love it Definitely grown on me since we put it up hahaha
And yes… I do see that random empty layer… I think that’s how German Christmas Trees are supposed to look… Right? LOL
Anddddd…. Mommy playing with the camera LOL
A few weeks ago we met up with some friends to check out our first German Christmas market at Bernkastel-Kues. It was super nice to see them and fun to explore such a pretty village. Bernkastel-Kues is a town along a river bank and just has a lot of character and lovely architecture. We we wandering around with the little ones so it was hard to pull out the camera for pictures too often, but I still managed to catch a few shots…
I’m guessing this is a fountain in the summer, very cool!
Love the city center walkways here… So wonderful to wonder around without cars… I wish they would do this in Old San Juan! Just rope off more pedestrian areas
My favorite image… I might need to print this one <3
Checking out the scene…
Waffles on a stickkkkkkkk!! LOL
One large Advent Calendar!!
These are part of the little shops they put up for the Christmas Markets. They just sold random crafts, clothes, foods, ornaments… Stuff like that.
Fun rides too haha!!
And after a day of walking it was nice to settle down in a warm restaurant for lunch.
Ok… Now this may have been more exciting for mommy than for Little Lue LOL!
Last week we had lots of precipitation forecasted, along with lower temperatures, and everyone (and by everyone, I mean that hand full of child like adults who still think snow is like magic falling for the sky) was hoping for snow… But sadly, all we got was some cold cloudy weather along with a few drizzles of rain. A little snow dusting one night (mostly on roof tops), only to melt by midday… That was it… Quite disappointing!
So you can image my dismay when the whole forecast for the upcoming weeks is clear/cloudy with 10-20% chance of precipitation… BOOOOOO!
Well, we were pleasantly surprised yesterday with the first snow fall! It snowed for about 3 hours and honestly I was just glued to the window staring at it. It would slow down and be nothing more than tiny specs of white, and them suddenly downpour with big chunky clumps of snow! So pretty…. Non of it stuck to the ground though… So it was just mostly fun to see. And of course as soon as I saw it I started dancing around like a kid, grabbed Lucy and the camera, threw on some coats and ran outside. (Quite impressive, as I’ve been avoiding the outside as much as possible the past month!)
So because we went out when it first started snowing, it wasn’t really very much coming down… and it was SO hard to photograph… But whatever, here are the pics I got.
It was so so SO pretty. I wish I could have captured it better. Oh well… at least Little Lue looked cute, right?
Adventures in Germany Continued
So a couple of weekends ago we were wondering what to do. I think that for daddy and I, our time in Key West had us soooo spoiled. We didn’t ever had to take long drives to do stuff, and it always felt like we had plenty to do. So here in Germany we hear of all these amazing cities and things to see, only to realize many of these spots are 2-4 hours away. Sure… It’s definitely a doable distance, but alas… We just loath being in the car for so long on… So our solution has been to scour the newspapers and anything we can get our hands on looking for random activities we could do closer to home. I’m not sure if it’s the upcoming holiday season, but there seems to always be a craft show or festival happening somewhere!
This weekend we spotted something a little more random… The yard sale page had an add for someone making Raw Apple Juice! Seemed interesting enough, so we decided to check it out.
It was actually really cool.
First you put the apples in a shredder!
Then you put the apple grinds into this giant pressor. Sure there are tiny ones you can use at home, but this one was much more impressive LOL.
If you are wondering… Yes, it did smell quite amazing!
Next, you had to press the apples… HARD!
And BAMMMM… Juice! Lots and lots of juice! Well… Cider, really
Did I mention it smelled amazing?
Little Lue decided we needed lots more…
Can’t really get more organic than that!
Better late than never… Yes?
A few shots from our visit with Nana and Papo mid October <3
I know I have been quite neglectful of my little blog lately, but it’s only because I’m extra tired, extra cranky, and totally freezing my buttie. Why so tired? If you haven’t heard, I’m pregnant!
Yes, those are the big news I shared with my family as they arrived for their first visit to Germany. And between pregnancy naps, senseless emotional roller coastering, trying to play catch up with the house cleaning, and chasing around a not so compliant toddler, I’ve had little time for the fun stuff… But thankfully the 2nd trimester is finally here, and I’m starting to feel a little more like myself… Sort of…
Enough chit chat… Here are a few shots from the visit!!
It was my mom’s birthday (any excuse to come visit us!) and that evening my dad had Lucy walk into the room with a cake in the wagon, it was a pretty cute idea. My mom was so surprised
So today was Little Lue’s second gymnastics class and I totally love it. I mean… she loves it? Can it be both?
It’s just so much fun to see her in a different setting, taking directions from her teacher, and having SO much fun doing it. I love the teacher Miss Kate, she makes the class super fun and appropriate for their age. I hope Little Lue gets to be in her classes a lot while we’re here! (She’s the same teacher for her dance class, yay!)
Little Lue is pretty good at following directions, but still gets a bit side tracked haha. Still, I can tell she’s totally engaged in everything that’s going on.
So this morning we tried on our new leotards! Yes, both of them… Because mommy was too excited to wait for Little Lue to go potty after she had woken up before trying the first one on, and Little Lue was too excited wearing her gymnastics clothes to remember to tell me she needed to pee.
So off with that one and on to the other!
We were so very excited to get to class… Little Lue couldn’t wait to take off all her clothes and just have her gymnastics outfit. Glad it’s pretty warm in there! (Did I mention it was in the 40’s this morning!?)
When is it our turn?!?!?! ***waiting for the door to open***
Decided to do a little stretching while we waited…
I think my favorite part about today’s class was when Little Lue used to bar to swing! She did it all by herself and loved every second of it. (So did mommy!!! You can tell by the disproportionate amount of photos LOL)
And just like that it was over… I think it’s cute that they get little stamps on their hands once they are done We always talk about showing daddy her gymnastics stamps.
So after a day of treasure hunting at the flea market, wondering around Ramstein-Meisenbach through their little shops, and spending some time on the base BX searching for tiny dance leotards, there was still no nap.
At this point I figured Little Lue would just crash at 7pm or something… So instead of trying to force on sleep at 4pm, we decided to go on a walk.
Heading out the door I decided to grab my camera and make it a little photo walk. I’m glad I did. I kind of love some of these…
And this particular photo just spoke to me so much. It’s of this really young couple… I didn’t want to disturb them when we passed them, but I had to look back and take one shot. They were very blushy as we walked by, like they were meeting in secret. One of them had come in a motor cross bike, probably from another village… It just gave me that young love rushing feeling; crazy, forbidden, new, and exciting. Any how, I love how this photo came out. I want to make more artful pieces like this in the future
So you obviously know about my love for photography. But if you’ve only recently met me, then maybe you didn’t know that I also love all things sewing! While pregnant with Little Lue I pulled out my sewing machine (which had been collecting a lot of dust since it had been purchased about a year prior), dusted it off, and dragged it to The Seam Shoppe in Key West (where we were living) to a quilting class. And it was here that I rediscovered WHY I had purchased a sewing machine in the first place; I LOVE TO SEW.
As much as I love it, it’s quite difficult with a toddler running wild. Specially when all my me time has been so full of blogging and photo editing recently. So my motivation for sewing the new quilt I had been dreaming up for quite a few months has simply not been there. I’ve been quietly hoping that I would find a big beautiful quilt to purchase at some garage sale or flea market. And also praying that I could afford said gorgeous quilt.
As we headed out to the local flohmart “flea market” in the village (one that had been announced all week in a hand painted sign hanging over an old storage barn and for some reason had caught my attention) I voiced my desire for a quilt to my husband. I hopelessly ranted about how expensive hand made quilts are and how I new I would have to sew one myself if I really wanted one… or get really really lucky…
Guess what? I got LUCKY!
The flea market was looking pretty bare. It was already close to noon and had probably been picked over all morning. Old toys, some used clothes, and just little trinkets, were laying around. And then, I saw it. Like diamonds and rubies poring out of a treasure chest, this large and fluffy quilt was neatly folded and hung on a wooden crate. I picked it up and it was just so soft from years of use. As I inspected it, it seemed to have a few stains, but the stitching was strong and perfect. You could tell this was made by a very experienced quilter. As I imagined a grandmother lovingly piecing this quilt together I wondered if I would be able to take this little treasure home…
I obviously was lusting after this thing, because a few moments later a young girl asked me if I needed help. I asked how much for the quilt… *held my breath*… “15 euro”.
That’s it?! I thought… I made a little happy dance in my head as an older woman walked by and told the girl something I couldn’t follow in German. Uh-oh, maybe she was giving her a different number…
“12 euro” She said.
“I’ll take it!”
Ha! I was so happy! I bundled it up in my arms and gingerly walked over to my husband who was busy paying for a DVD for my daughter (of course she can’t leave empty handed!).
As I inspected it in the car I found a patch on the back that reads “Made by Peacemakers Quilt Club Albermarle, NC 2007”
How incredibly special is that?! This quilt bought in a flea market in Germany came from a group of quilters in North Carolina! And I also know that it is 6 years old! I wonder if it was a gift to a family in need? Or many auctioned off at an event? I’ve found some contact information for the club, and I’m tempted to email them and just say hello… I would want them to know their quilt made it to a very appreciative home where it will be given much love and use! That I promise.
Finally at home, I got to unwrap my quilt bundle. And it is BIG! OMG I love it so very much! And I can’t believe it was such a steal, not even 20 dollars?!
It’s pretty cold outside tonight and you can bet I am all wrapped up in this beautiful quilt cuddling with my princess while we relax and watch a movie.
Sorry… that spot is already taken 😉
Seriously though… Toddler sized drum set?! EPIC WIN!!!
Side note, I’ve been trying to find it on sale online, but no luck. I bought this drum set on the Ramstain Base at MOMS. In case anyone was wondering.
Here is part two of out weekend adventures! The Wine Festival
The next day we decided to check out the wine festival! Now THAT was fun. Granted it was a pretty small “festival” just a bunch of tables, and a little food stand. But there was an awesome band of what I can only guess were the members of a local Music Studio right in that same plaza. They were fantastic! We ordered a couple of glasses of wine, some plates of cheeses, as well as some sauerkraut with bread (seemed like the only vegetarian option LOL). We couldnt quite finish the sauerkraut, too sourer; ha! We arrive towards the evening, so it was just nice to relax and enjoy some music and food. It was also COLD! haha Ok.. so not super cold, but yeah, we were feeling it!
Monday I finally marched into the village’s “city hall” and got my business license! Woot Woot!! I am now a totally legit photography business and I feel pretty proud of myself for getting it all together in a timely manner. If you are currious about that, go check out my photography site Liliana Beatriz Fotografia at lilianabeatriz.com.
So yeah! That was our weekend! 😀
It was exciting to feel like we had so much to do, as it turns out the next coming weekends are filled with festivals and what not. So I’m excited to see more!