One more week until Christmas! And two more weeks until New Year's. We have incredible amounts of snow, it's been way below zero (Celsius) for the past few days, and just in time for family celebrations, I caught a cold or somesuch. Woohoo... not. But at least a nice Sunday in means I can drink lots of tea with honey to keep from coughing my lungs out :-P
I think today we'll go to a medieval Christmas market, unless the weather stays as completely crappy as it was yesterday. Then again, we'll probably end up going either way, as it's the last weekend for the market and I really want to go :-P
A German tradition I may have to revive once there are no cats to eat the wreath anymore :-P Coffee, cookies, candles. How much better can it get?
We're celebrating with coffee, homemade jam, and ponies later. Also, there's usually cake at the barn on Sundays. (Have I mentioned I love the barn?)
You really notice the lack of a significant November holiday here... Christmas season is in full swing, and Christmas market season has officially begun. We went to our first (of a couple planned ones) on Friday, and despite the kind of crappy weather, it was rather pretty. Located around a small castle (of which we have many around here, though we don't have a castle each), Winterträume was quite lovely, especially since we got there in the dark and were able to enjoy the lighting and atmosphere without having to see the mud we were walking through :-P Sadly, my camera doesn't like the dark at all, so I stole a couple of pictures from the website.
Sadly, many of the booths looked pretty similar, and there was very little we were interested in buying. We did get some really nice tea though, as well as some Italian cheese and salami from a Venetian who apparently spends most of his time traveling around Europe, selling delicious snack foods. There's a couple more markets coming up, including one medieval Christmas market and one in a little forest outside historic farm buildings. Maybe for those, I can actually take my own pictures :-)
Phew... Christmas is over :) Well, the official day, technically the twelve days of Christmas don't end until next Tuesday. But all the Christmas pressure stuff is off :)
I spent most of this past week in Akron with Jess, generally being spoiled absolutely rotten :) Dinner on Christmas Eve at her aunt's house with ham and cookies and pirogies (or however you spell that), dinner at her house Christmas Day with large amounts of red meat and cauliflower in cheese sauce (yum), more ham sandwiches the next day with more fun people... yeah, way too much food. And way too many presents too - a hoodie and a hot pot and yarn and candy and coffee and DVDs and stuff! Good grief, so much stuff :) But they all seemed to like their presents, so I don't feel quite as bad about the sheer size of my pile.
I called home Christmas Eve and Day as well and talked to everybody, although of course the annual Christmas package didn't show up until after I had left - and then I opened it when I got back and turned into a sobbing mess when I opened my mum's gift: she'd gotten a professional photographer to take pictures of the horses, and they made a really gorgeous photo book of my (1600 pound) baby... he might be an idiot sometimes, but I miss him. *sniffles*
It's back to Cleveland tomorrow for New Year's Eve and the weekend, and after that I'm going to have to get used to writing 2009... if you get things from me dated 2008 in March or so, don't be surprised... I do it every year.
My cousin also got me a DVD version of Dinner for One, our New Year's Eve traditional TV viewing, so now I don't have to search the internet for it every year :) In case you've never seen it, here's to sharing a German tradition!