In one week, Marcus and I will fly to Berlin to spend Christmas with his family in the East. The last time we had a German Christmas was in 2009, a visit that also took us to the Christmas markets (Weihnachtsmärkte) in Dresden. It’s a magical city, but even more so with a mug of Glühwein in hand and sparkling lights all around. Besides visiting Dresden, we’re looking forward to visiting family, walking through the snowy woods, and eating at our favorite restaurants in Berlin. I can’t wait to step on the plane and head East for Christmas!
What are your plans for the holiday?
During our holiday in east Germany, Marcus’ father took us sailing on the same lake we visited last year. He and Marcus have sailed together for years, but it was only my second time out. I love boats and being on the water, but am still getting used to all the rope and steep turns. The wind whipped us around and the fickle sun finally dominated over the clouds.
We took our annual summer trip to Germany in the middle of July. Marcus’ father has a house on the edge of a lake and protected wildlife area. We spent most of our time in the woods and on the water, enjoying nature and the quiet. There was no internet, but lots of fresh fruit, nightly barbeques on the back terrace, the spotting of deer, reading books, and dancing in the fields.
The southern German city of Stuttgart is a mixture of old and new architecture. I am always drawn to the classic grandeur of the old palaces and official buildings, but the newer buildings of the last decades had a fantastic array of shapes.
I was pleasantly surprised by my short trip to Stuttgart and all the city had to offer. Three days was barely enough time to scratch the surface between work obligations, but I will certainly return someday when I finally plan that journey through the Black Forest that I have been dreaming of since childhood. Until then, Stuttgart.
Last night was the European Football Championship semi-finals, Germany against Italy. I was excited to be in Stuttgart and watched the first half of the match with the crowd gathered in the Biergarten im Schlossgarten Stuttgart. Unfortunately, the outcome was not in Germany’s favor, but the fans were amazingly spirited.
A few scenes from an evening in Stuttgart, where I’m spending the next few days on a work trip. After a morning of traveling and an afternoon of final preparations, I went for an evening walk in search of a bite to eat. It is properly summery here (ahem, Amsterdam) and everyone was outside to enjoy it. I landed in Weinstube Fröhlich for a dinner of Schwäbische Käsespätzle, which is basically delicious and cheesy. And not at all photogenic. More to come!
When I announced my engagement on small sight, I knew I wouldn’t turn this space into a wedding blog, but I also want to share a few moments along the way. Planning an intercultural wedding and marriage leaves a lot of room for learning. I spent one morning in September running between the American and German consulates in Amsterdam to finally learn that all answers would depend on the German province in which we will wed.
After phone calls, clarifications, translations, and waiting rooms, Marcus and I now have all our paperwork in order! It now needs to be submitted for approval, after which we will be allowed to schedule an appointment at the registry office in Berlin. What I thought would be the most difficult part has actually been quite painless.
I wish I had better news for the yet-to-be-printed save the date cards and the yet-to-be-booked venue. My older sister has a lot of event planning experience and is encouraging us to finalize the most critical parts. Maybe it’s because we’re planning a Berlin wedding while being in Amsterdam, but everything is just taking a lot more time. In between, I have been gathering some visual inspiration for that day in April, which I wanted to share. If anyone has some tips on wedding planning, I would love some insight! How did you handle all the details and planning?
Photo sources: flowers, table, dress and bouquet, church.