I don't know what my thing is with picnics but I would eat outside from a plastic bowl every day of the week if I could. Just give me warm weather and a nice landscape and a friend who bakes a gluten free apple cake, just for me. Along with the little bottle of champagne she had carried in her rucksack for miles and miles, this was a much needed bit of bliss.
Last December husband and son flew to Hamburg for a weekend while daughter and I sat bundled up in front of the tv waching old Christmas movies.
Looking at the pictures on son's camera, two things caught my eye: it looks like it was freezing cold in Hamburg and there are a lot of pictures of son POSING with a big smile on his face!
"Why do you always have a big grin on your face when your Dad takes a picture of you?", I ask him.
"He is very funny and always makes great jokes," he replies.
When he sees my face he adds, "don't worry, you are funny, too."
Here are the pictures of a weekend in Hamburg, which motto was: the Beatles when they just started out...
While in Hamburg, Stu Suttcliffe, a member of the Beatles, fell in love with a girl from Hamburg named Astrid Kirchherr. She was the one who talked him into, what we now know as the famous "Beatles hair cut", and soon the other Beatles followed suit.
Stu decided to stay in Hamburg to further his education in art when the Beatles moved back to England. Unfortunately he died soon after.
My family believes that if it is your birthday you need to be treated like a birthday princess (the girls. The boys are princes.) That means on your day, or on your weekend or week or how ever long you are able to stretch your celebration YOU get to decide everything. The "happy birthday" song will be sung to you frequently. You will get awesome gifts and cards and little love notes. If you happen to play a board game you get to start even if it means you start eight times in a row. Not sure which movie to watch? The birthday princess gets to decide and everybody will agree it is a wonderful movie and not a predictable chick flick at all.
This little calf was only a few days old when we got to our favorite farm in Bavaria and daughter was told that she could name her. Only condition: it had to be a name that had never been used on the farm before and had to start with an "A".
Friday, around noon, we left for a weekend in Bavaria. Upper Bavaria, to be exact, which to me is the most picturesque part. Being there, feels like living in a gigantic, kitschy - in the best way - postcard.
You can't help but put on your walking boots, pack a rucksack with sandwiches and water and start walking...
...you will encounter little streams and big ones like the "Isar"...
...you will pass Bavarian "Gasthaeuser", like the "Altwirt" in Wackersberg, where you have to try the local food...
...you will see perfectly maintained gardens with flowers and trees in bloom...
...of course you will stop every so often to pet the farm animals, all of whom look healthy and happy...
...you will pass the most charming Bavarian houses...
...till you come upon a little wooden ice cream sign....
...which you will follow...
You will arrive at the the Beindlhof - Farm where the farmer's wife makes the most delicious -really, the most, most, most delicious - ice cream, you have ever tried.
You just have to enter the little cabin, pick a bowl of ice cream and leave money in a money box. "We trust you" says a little handwritten note above it.
Then you will eat whatever ice cream you have picked, right outside the little cabin and will probably turn right around and get a second and third one. You might try the walnut or haselnut creation. Or the "beer ice cream", like husband did. The apple/cinnamon sorbet was fantastic but so was the vanilla/whip cream/baileys. The chocolate ice cream was out of this world and so was the raspberry.
...next time I will try the plum/red wine combination or the strawberry/lavendar or the buttermilk/blueberry.
The cream for the ice cream comes from the 20 cows that graze next to the farm and so do most of the other ingredients.
The only way to get to the "Beindlhof" is by foot and since the ice cream is freshly made, you will never know beforehand which kind you will find in that freezer.
It is guaranteed though, that you will eat too much and have to rest at the next wooden bench along the way.
Husband and I love going on hikes and we try to go on as many as possible. The problem with those hikes is finding the right one: It should start and end at the same spot, it should include some ancient ruins or dark caves for husband, some animals along the way for daughter, some climbing for son and a beautiful landscape plus a little cabin along the way where I can get a cup of coffee for me. It should also be the right lenght: not too short and not too long.
The hardest part though is finding a hike that is marked well enough so we can actually follow it. Often we get lost and if it weren't for husband and his sense of direction (it seems like I don't have one) most of the time we wouldn't find our way back.
But he always manages, following the sun or trees of whatever it is he does and brings us back to the car. And most of the time those are the most fun hikes because you never know what awaits around the corner.
There! A marker! A red triangle!
At this point we were already on the wrong path - but didn't know it yet.
The view is impressive anyway:
The red marker! Unfortunately it faces the wrong way...