Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pocket Money

Our children don't get pocket money. Husband and I figure that since we have to work to get a paycheck so should they. Thus, they get paid for the odd job here and there. Sweeping the stairway and the sidewalk might result in a $1, washing the car or piling the leaves might get them 1 Euro.
However, son found out fairly early on that there are other ways of getting money. Visiting Oma is one of them. Going to Italy on vacation is another one. There, my blue eyed children with their lovely round cheeks don't seem to need money at all. All they need to do is smile and let people pinch their cheeks and off they go with their free conettis.
Son is the most successful, however, when we are in the States. Here, it seems the streets are littered with pennies, nickels and dimes and son is there to collect them. I don't know if people drop them by accident and find they are not worth picking up but on a good day son will end up with a dollar in change. 
I wonder if now, that people are starting to hold on to their money more, he will have to come up with another way to finance his Yu-Gi-Oh cards.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Dead Chicken

We are partial vegetarians. Meaning, we do eat poultry (all four of us) and fish (daughter and me.) The kids have never had beef or pork. It is rare that we do buy poultry and if we do, it is free roaming, happy chicken. Normally, it so expensive that the price alone will turn you into a vegetarian. 
Lately though, daughter has been wondering if she should go vegetarian all the way. She told me she wouldn't eat fish anymore but she was still unsure about cutting chicken out of her diet.
Last night, she asked me if I had some time since she had some serious issues to ponder. "Sure," I said, sitting down on her bed, "what is wrong?"

The problem she is having is, that till now, she believed that the chicken and turkey we eat roam freely at a farm. They are very happy animals and they live a full, happy life. They marry, have children and at one point, when they are ripe with very, very old age, so old, that they can barely walk around anymore, they drop dead. The farmer will come running out of his farm house, scoop up the lifeless chicken and, after pulling its feathers, sell it to the local health food store.
Now, I come by, see the ancient, dead chicken, buy it and cook it.

"Mom, " daughter pleads "tell me the chicken you buy died of old age. They didn't get killed. Right?"

We might have to become "real vegetarians" after all.            


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Message to Papa from Daughter

Good morning, Papa,
it is very cold here. Please bring me home a monkey. If possible, a baby girl monkey. 
I love you. 

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Savannah II

The Waving Girl Statue greets sailors sailing into the Savannah port with their ships from all over the world. Legend says, that she was the sister of the light house keeper. She waved to all the ships coming by, hoping that it was the one that her fiance, a sailor was working on. Except, he never came back. 
I guess, deep down she knew that his ship had sunk, but she kept on waiting and waving to every single boat passing the light house. For 40 years. 
The sailors got accustomed to seeing her year after year and liked being welcomed to Savannah.
When she died this huge statue was put up, which is still greeting everybody arriving from the ocean.

Savannah is full of stories like this.


Friday, January 16, 2009

Eric Singer

Whenever I am gone for a few days, husband and the kids are up to the oddest things... 

I am positive that daughter was the youngest person at that concert...

...but she did wear huge ear protection.
Pictures by R. T.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tybee Island, Ga

If there is one beach my family knows well, it is Tybee Island, Savannah.
Having lived here for 3 years we know everything about it. Where to park, where to buy the sandwiches and fried chicken for the beach picnic, when there are the least amount of people and where to find star fish, sand dollars and other creatures. 

This is the swing I sat in with son when he was 3 days old. At that time I had no idea how to care for a baby. But I knew that he was the most wonderful little boy I had ever seen.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Savannah, Georgia

Our last vacation days were spent in Savannah. To me, it is the most magical of all American cities and, as always, I was so smitten that I couldn't even take one picture. All pictures below were taken by husband.
The oldest building in Georgia is the Pirate House. It used to be a tavern and housed mainly sailors and pirates. There is still the underground tunnel from the restaurant to the Savannah River, that the smugglers used. The ceilings in the rooms are low, the wooden floors crocked. There are lots of little nocks and hidden doors. 

Supposebly, Captain Flint died in one of the rooms upstairs. The Pirate House is mentioned several times in Robert Stevenson's book "Treasure Island".

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Captiva Island

I had another "perfect summer day" in the middle of winter. Except this time, the whole family and Grandma got to spend it with me. We started on the beach of Captiva Island, went to the "Bubble Room" and soaked up as much "island life" as possible.

The sun and the waves, the dolphins and the cranes will hopefully tie me over till the next time I get to have my perfect day.

Friday, January 2, 2009

American Tradition

See the gigantic bowl of ice cream daughter is eating?

That is not something I would normally let her do. Sure, she can have ice-cream, but I wouldn't add chocolate syrup to it and there also wouldn't be any whip cream.
However, I will ease up on my rules of good nutrition whenever husband looks at me and says "but it is an American tradition!".
It seems that it is an American traditon, that when coming from the beach, one has to make a stop at Dairy Queen and order what one's heart desires. Daughter desired a gigantic Banana Split. She is a big fan of American Traditons.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Ding Darling, Sanibel Island

A large part of Sanibel Island, Florida consists of "Ding Darling" a national wildlife refuge. You can walk through there (it will take you a day) or drive (doesn't quite work, does it? Driving through a wildlife refuge doesn't seem right) or rent a bike and ride (you will be able to flee if you see an alligator moving towards you) - in my eyes the only way to go.

Confusing her father with a horse, daughter was the only one not tired after the 12 mile ride.

We saw interesting looking birds, raccons playing, turtels and snakes. The kids claim they saw alligators. (Wishful thinking and old rotten logs?)