Slowing down.

Miscellaneous

Eek! It’s been a while since I last posted anything.

A few reasons:

- I was doing waaaay too much.

-Mr B was abroad for work for seven weeks (mon-fri) which is why I stuffed my calendar with stuff to do to keep myself busy, not feel lonely in a new city, getting by on my current level of German. Yes, I know Frankfurt is a very international city and everyone speaks English. But, I’m not into speaking English to a German person in a German shop. To assume that they should be able to communicate to me in a foreign language is a bit out of order, in my opinion.

-Mr B fell ill, then Amazing M, then Deliciousmother.

-Deliciousmother is not feeling so crash hot, due to a sudden breakout of those pesty things called pimples/spots/acne. Spots sound so much nicer to me, bordering on cute. Kind of. Anyway, it’s such a vain and petty thing to feel upset over, but that’s just how I feel. I’ve never had it worse than now, so I’m trying a few things to remedy it internally and physically by

S   L   O   W   I   N   G down, eating more healthily and getting the sleep that I have deprived myself in the past two months. Time to decrease the levels of cortisol. Yoga, gym and reading trashy books are in order.

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Like my method of learning? :)

And even though I cleared the past week of things to do except for German lessons and getting over a cold, I managed to create some stress inducing situations over the past few days. Which is why I’ve decided to just have a lazy Sunday evening, play a bit, get on the blog and not do any German homework.

So that’s my fortnight in a nutshell.

I’m enough.

Parenting & Musings

This morning was just one of them mornings. You know the kind where everything and everyone irks you, especially your amazing kid and husband (who coincidentally just didn’t have their shizzle together). The volume of my voice reached shamefully high decibels at seven thirty in the morning. Why couldn’t M listen to me and sit down to eat the breakfast I prepared? Why couldn’t Mr B make her sit down and eat the breakfast I prepared? Why was Mr B complaining about the lack of yogurt selection in the fridge? Why couldn’t I control this anger that was spewing forth like a broken fire hydrant?? I did not like what I was projecting to the world. It was time for a breather and it was time to be kind to myself.

So I put off the housework and German homework to sweat it out in the gym. Whilst I was checking my emails, I came across this great video that was well needed by this undelicious mother. Enjoy!

 

 

Pink Cake, Blue Baker*.

Cake!

Now that things are (fingers crossed) A-OK with the granddaddy, I feel I can blog about stuff again.

The past few weeks were jam packed full of studying, housework, socialising, worrying and baking. I volunteered my baking services to another expat lady who wanted a fondant cake for her daughter’s first birthday. Seeing some pics of my cakes changed her mind and I ended up baking this…

via deliciousmother

via deliciousmother

Six layers of vanilla butter cake frosted with vanilla butter cream. Took me a few hours and I thought it would be a good exercise to gauge how much one could make in selling cakes.

taken by said expat lady. via deliciousmother

taken by said expat lady. via deliciousmother

This ‘baker’* is blue is because I discovered this afternoon that I’m not legally allowed to sell cakes unless I have the title, ‘Konditorin’, which is the term used in Germany to describe a pastry chef. This involves three years of instruction and apprenticeship.

But that won’t stop me from baking. It just stops me from making any pocket money from a much loved hobby (for now). My pipe dream of bringing moist, sweet and yummy crumbs to many in Germany who aren’t too fond of German cakes may take a while longer. Boo!

*I am not a formally trained baker. I’m just describing myself as a ‘baker’ not “Baekerin” in this post because I partook in the act of baking. Just saying, as it seems Germans are very protective of titles. For good reason, but still…

A rough morning.

Miscellaneous

Deliciousgrandfather needs to urgently undergo a medical procedure and quite frankly, I’m gutted that I can’t be there for him, my mother and sister. When my mother answered the phone this morning, the tone of her voice was strained. I instinctively knew something was amiss, and when I asked her if anything was the matter, she explained the situation.

My heart sunk into my stomach. Tears welled up and I fought hard to keep it together. I know, as a rational and intelligent adult that human beings are mortal. Medical conditions happen or develop as a result of lifestyle choices or by fate. It’s a fact: we will all one day die. But of course that should never happen to my family. My family never gets sick. I won’t ever have to deal with death in my family (!).

I conversed with DG over Skype and he was his merry self, not too worried about it all. Where I would be too devastated to speak, he seemed more interested in chatting with Amazing M. I suppose I just have to leave it in the hands of the Universe and pray that it will all go smoothly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Priceless quotes from Amazing M.

Parenting & Musings

In these times, and being the way I am, I feel that having just M (for now…) is just about all I can handle.  Being a mother to one is definitely not easy. Mother to two? I’m impressed. To three? You’re a hero. To more? I can recommend a very good therapist.

this is the second pic of alcohol featured on my blog... it's very good gin. via deliciousmother

this is the second pic of alcohol featured on my blog. may it not be the last… it’s very good gin. let it be known that I am a very responsible drinker.via deliciousmother

When I’m beyond fatigued and my eye muscles feel sore (from all that rolling – with eyelids closed), some funny words from M plus a strong G&T makes parenthood just a little bit more delicious.

Some of my favourite quotes, including the latest from this evening:

Thank you for get me from da kindergarten and waiting for me.

I wanna cuddle and kiss you in mama’s bed.

I love you so much.

Mama, you’re so gorgeous!

Papa has a penis and M has a bum.

Thank you for making dinner.

Thank you for making cake.

Mama, I have genitals… in my knickers!

I think the last one is better than a G&T.

 

The beginning of an end…

Parenting & Musings

Our decision for me to look after Amazing M for her first three years was a good one. For us. Let me stress to you how much this decision was affected by our personal circumstances and my desire to be her sole carer in the early years.

And let me also stress to you that there were many times I felt doing any sort of work, like, say cleaning nightclub toilets, would be better than the tedium, tantrums and Mr Tumble* involved in looking after a kid full time. But it goes without saying that I’ve had the most precious time with M. I’ve had more laughs and good tears than sad tears, and as cliched as it sounds, I think she makes me want to be a better person. Just don’t talk to me about it at that time of the month.

bag full of things on her 'things to bring' list. via deliciousmother

bag full of things on her ‘things to bring’ list. via deliciousmother

Well, those precious days of just doing whatever, whenever are officially over. Amazing M had her first day at kindergarten and she didn’t shed a single tear when I left her with her classmates. Refused to kiss me or say good-bye. Gee, thanks, M. Thank goodness you’re not old enough to realise you’ve got another 831 weeks of education before mama and papa bid you, “Auf Widersehen” at the airport for your gap year abroad.

As you so often say to me, “Ha-Ha!”

 

* This guy here. He makes my friend want to punch him in the face. Harsh, but I’d have to agree.

 

 

 

Hello and goodbyes.

All things German, Cake!, Relationships

Today was a gorgeous day in terms of the weather and the company. We went to the Fressgass in town for a farewell-do for one of the expat ladies I had the good fortune of meeting. I’m not going to freak her out by extolling all her virtues ( cos I know you’ll be reading this, L). I’ve not known her long, but she is A W E S O M E. And Amazing M is seriously crushing on her husband, the man with the “pretty, pretty hair”. Let’s hope we can make it to the U.S. at some point to visit her and her family and then go mad with the retail. DM is not happy with the pricing of US beauty products here in Germany or anywhere else that isn’t the U.S. for that matter <unimpressedfaceemoticon>.

Made some of these and created a flower bouquet for the leaving-do. Unfortunately I didn’t get to take a pic of it.

When we made the decision to come Frankfurt, I was quite happy about it. I knew that we, as a little family of three would make a really great life here. Yes, there would be challenges like learning the language (the grammar;don’t even…) and adjusting to a different culture. And of course there was the issue of leaving my gorgeous friends in London and having to start from scratch on the friendship scene. But I knew deep down that I would be able to find some delicious people to have some fun with. I just didn’t anticipate how delicious the people I’ve met are. Who knows what they think of me, but I’m so happy to have found the people I’ve met and gotten to know. Much laughter has been had and I’m thinking I need to top up on some heavy duty eye cream if I don’t want my mother to tell me to stop smiling so much (lest my crows feet show). It might have been the weinschorle, great company and warm weather combined but I must say that this afternoon, I felt the beginnings of love for Frankfurt. Let’s hope this feeling doesn’t wear off quickly as the alcohol!

 

 

 

Mein Kopf explodiert.

Cake!, Food & Travel, Parenting & Musings

Yesterday’s cake was a hit. My friend and her boyfriend very much appreciated my efforts, and we enjoyed every bite of the cake. I came back home feeling grateful to have met and befriended such a warm and easy going couple in Frankfurt. Some people are just so easy (in a good way). Easy to open up to and easy to be with. Just delightfully easy. Transporting the cake there, however, was not.

I made the mistake of decorating it on the cake stand instead of a cake board, so when it came to finding a way to carry it to my friend’s flat I was stumped. No box nor carrier was big enough to hold my cake + cake stand safely. There was only one solution : take it in my hands, and carefully (and s  l  o  w  l  y) walk there. And God forsake the man/woman who bumps it off the stand.

What should have taken me 10 minutes took me 25. On the upside, compliments got thrown at me my cake by pedestrians, drivers and restaurant workers. Did you really make that cake? Wow, that looks so beautiful! Why, thank you for the cake, signora! Mmmm lecker! Oooo, that looks so yummy! Oh, that looks so good! (All in German, natuerlich!) Many smiles were given and a lot of eyebrow flirting action went on (with the cake). It got me thinking. Maybe I could make a few of these cakes for a few bucks…

And I am very pleased to say that it tasted as good as it looked. The left overs reside safely with my friend, otherwise it would be sitting in my belly right now. Which would not a good weekend make*.

However! I have a little bit of cake left in the fridge. The original recipe makes a three layer 7 inch cake and my cake tins are 6 inches. After my German lessons, I was in no state of mind to adjust the  recipe to suit a 6 inch tin. This meant I had leftover batter/frosting, and this, my dear readers, is how little cakelet (+nine cupcakes) came to be!

photo 1

three layers of moist chocolate stuff. via deliciousmother

photo 2

baby cake and mama cake. via deliciousmother

When Amazing M returned from her grandparents this afternoon, I served some of this to Oma and Opa who were impressed, but I got the feeling that M didn’t share their opinion when she spat out a mouthful of cake and didn’t ask for more. Grumble.

The fours days apart did me the world of good: Cake+cakelet was born, I could finish my German homework in peace, and I got precious time to just be me. Not a mother or a wife. Just plain old me. Which is fab! Other than a few delicious things like, say, a trip to Six Senses Yao Noi or this(DROOL), I find that having or claiming ‘me’ time is the best thing I can give myself.

Plus, the time apart gave us the chance to properly miss each other. I was lucky enough to be the recipient of the most intense cuddle from M when I greeted her at the door. Actually, she literally threw herself at me and declared, “I missed mama!”  Priceless.

p.s. apropos the blog title – it has nothing to do with this post. It merely explains the result of having to learn a very un-easy language. Also, I could not think of any other alternative title.

*many minutes spent at the gym. Gym going is my preferred form of exercise, but I’d rather have a lazy three day weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last night I had a cakegasm.

Cake!, Food & Travel

It happened when it was very late. Waaay past my usual bedtime by three hours. I had the whole flat to myself as Amazing M was with Oma and Opa, and Mr B was away for work.

As much as I missed them both something crazy, I had a fantastic opportunity  to get up to some baking and could make as much mess and noise as I needed to without getting shooshed at or told to go back to bed.

I present to you my Chocolate and Nutella Layer cake, inspired by Rosie from the blog, Sweetapolita.

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I am just so chuffed with my efforts! via deliciousmother

As I started baking quite late, it was 2 o’clock in the morning by the time I had finished decorating it. So technically, my cakegasm was experienced in the early hours of the morning.

This is quite an ‘easy’ cake to bake. The cake mix is very simple- just mix in a few different wet ingredients at once and then add the dry stuff. No creaming the sugar or other time consuming techniques. The tedious bit is waiting for the crumb coat and subsequent layers of frosting to set.

As I’m taking the cake to a friend this evening for pudding, a cross section pic hasn’t been taken. I’ll try to eat just one slither of a slice…

You can find the full recipe and other delightful treats to make here.

*DM defines this as an eruption of visceral pleasure induced by the sight/taste of a cake. Not an actual physical orgasm as defined here.

Learning German.

All things German

My head hurts. I’ve just come back from my first lesson from Goethe Institut <crosseyedfaceemoticon>.

First lesson nervousness has abated. I’m in a small class of eight who seem friendly and open and hopefully will be up for some bier drinking after a few more lessons.

We began our class by formulating personal questions with a partner. Things like, “What is your name?” “Where do you come from?” “What is your profession?” “What is your marital status?” and so on. In German. And then onto verb conjugation. Three hours spaeter, we students know a little bit about each other, know how to speak in present/past tense, and have some homework to do before we start again tomorrow. Three days a week times eight weeks later, I should be able to use speak well in German using proper grammar. Not DM grammar, which makes most nouns feminine (yes, German nouns have a male, feminine AND neutral article) with the use of DM past verb construction: Any part tense verb has a ‘ge’ put at the front and a ‘t’ thrown at the back. For example, if I want to say, “I baked a cake”, I might say, “Ich habe eine Kuchen gebacht”. Which is FALSCH, but I am pretty much understood by all.

Speaking German in this way will not do. I just don’t have a desire to speak half hearted German when I know I’ll be here for a while yet. So I’ll have to put some effort into learning and get used to a little bit of a head ache. I guess it’s a sign that my neurones are connecting again.

Hazy to you, too? It's what I see when I look at this verb conjugation table. via

Hazy to you, too? It’s what I see when I look at this verb conjugation table. via deliciousmother

And speaking English in class is verboten. Why am I not surprised? Our teacher will bring her English word jar next week and charge us 50 cents for each English word/phrase spoken. Huh.

Complaints aside, I am now proud to know how to say, “I ate currywurst and doener plate on the weekend.” and ” What does one wear to the opera?” in German. Correctly!