Lieber Frühling, komm doch bald. A new Kaffeeklatsch thread for Spring - living in Austria and Germany

(358 Posts)
Ploom Tue 19-Mar-13 15:40:48

All welcome - whether you're living in Germany or Austria, have questions about life in those countries or just want to chat. smile

Previous thread here

admylin Tue 19-Mar-13 16:12:01

Thanks ploom hope you and your boys are on the recovery route. Have they got school holidays too?

nutella I hope it's not flu. You're probably exhausted and your body is going on strike. Is your dh working long hours or can you get yourself off to bed early when he comes in? That's if baby nut is happy with a bottle.

I just got back from a trip into town with dd, all motivated to get her some spring/summer gear but we have come back with 2 vest tops and some instant couscous so not much luck! We'll have to go again.

Ploom Tue 19-Mar-13 17:07:35

No the dc are off next week and the week after so think ds1 will end up with 3 weeks off!

admylin Tue 19-Mar-13 17:32:04

Don't know about your ds's school but alteast here they usually just waste time the week before a holiday so maybe he won't miss much anyway!
Are they eating much with their sore throats?
Ds has absoloutly nothing to do for school the next couple of weeks and poor dd has about 4 subjects to work on and a test to prepare for (dreaded German grammar)!

platanos Tue 19-Mar-13 18:19:17

ploom hope your boys recover too and hope that the rest of you don't get it. Thanks for the new thread!

nutella fingers crossed it is not flu. Those are not the symptoms I had. have as much rest as little one allows.

admylin I smiled at the varied nature of your shopping. But I guess that will not see dd through the spring or summer. The herbal tea is a mix of Frauenmantel, Himbeerblätter and Ringelblume. You might want to check if it is okay for her to take. I take it all the time...Hope the holidays go well. It has only just dawned on me that I will have to think of something for dd next year, for the Semesterferien and the Easter holidays. Oh dear.

hupa enjoy your trip back. I am also jealous. Hope the weather and driving conditions are good for you. how long will your trip be?

outnumbered good luck with the job hunt. Hope the week has gone okay for you. I was going to say I am happier with a job outside the home than not, but the realisation that as from next year I have another 2 weeks of holidays to cover makes me want to rethink that one.

linzer are you at war with your neighbour? Or has it all blown over? and did ds get his friendship book filled in?

mrtumbles what age are the people in your class? How many evenings do you teach?I also want a dd with a hole in her foot.

I went back to work yesterday. I still have a cold but nothing like last week. The dc were actually quite good. DD1 said I am always nicer when I am ill (charming!).

I have a question. I want to improve my writing skills. I don't want to become a bestselling novelist or anything, but just improve my writing for my job. Do any of you have any idea of courses or books? I was wondering if doing a proofreading or copy-editing course would be the thing for me. I don't have much time, or money, to invest though. Has anyone done anything similar?

off to scratch the wart...eek. I keep forgetting to buy that plaster. Tomorrow. waves to everyone else!

LinzerTorte Wed 20-Mar-13 05:34:40

Morning!

Thanks for the new thread Ploom, very apt title! For once, it actually looks nice and sunny outside today but it's no doubt bitterly cold. Hope your DS is on the mend now and the rest of you didn't come down with anything in the end.

admylin Hope the holidays are going well so far - apart from your DD having all that work to do. Everything always seems to come at once; DD1 has a maths Schularbeit today and then a biology test on Friday. DH has been helping her with the maths and I've been doing biology, but there's just so much to learn - I'm sure I never had a biology test that difficult at her age.

platanos No on both counts - things have blown over with the neighbour, thank goodness, and DS was too shy to ask the tree cutter in the end!
Re the writing skills, I'm not sure how much help a proofreading course would be; depending on the course, you would - I assume - learn about the correct use of punctuation, etc. but often proofreading is more about spotting mistakes (and it's assumed you already have the basic grammatical/writing knowledge). I'm trying to think of the name of a book that was recommended where I last worked - one of my colleagues did a course held by one of the co-authors, which she said was very good. I'll have a proper look for it later!

DH is at a seminar for the next three days so, despite the fact that he'll only be five minutes down the road, we won't see him till Friday afternoon. It seems like a waste of (the company's) money to pay for a room for him there, but apparently they all have to stay overnight as es gehört dazu and everyone would be rushing off home otherwise.

hupa Wed 20-Mar-13 07:55:27

Ploom Thanks for starting the new thread. I hope your dss are on the road to recovery.

Nutella I hope you´re feeling better this morning. Dh has said there are a few really nasty viruses around this winter. Whereas people might usually feel ill for a few days, it´s taking 2-3 weeks before they feel an impovement at the moment.

admylin Sorry the shopping trip wasn´t successful. I´m hoping to stock up while we´re in England. I´ll probably end up buying loads for the dc and come back empty handed myself.
The route we take is basically Dortmund, Duisburg, Eindhoven, Antwerp, Gent, Calais - it´s more or less one straight motorway, so not many chances to get lost. It usually takes 6.5 -7 hours from here to Calais, then 1.5 hours with the ferry and then another hour or so to London. We usually do the whole trip in one go, but this time are staying overnight in Calais, because we can´t set off until Friday afternoon. I think as it´s Friday, plus the start of the school holidays in many areas we could well spend a lot of time sitting in traffic jams.

planatos I´m glad that you´re starting to feel better. I´m sorry I can´t help with the writing - what type of writing do you use in your job?

Linzer That´s really annoying about your dh having to stay overnight. Obviously the company has more money than sense.

I think I better stop now or this will turn into an essay.

Thanks for the shiny new thread Ploom, hope your house full of illness is getting healthier?

Plantanos the people I teach are aged between 17 and 82, approximately ;) I just offer adult evening courses - I'm running an A1 "false beginners" course atm, and a B1 course, which I have been teaching since A1, some have left and some new people have joined, but the core of the group has been the same since Sept 2011, and they are on their 5th semester as a group now. The 82 year old lady is in that group. The youngest ones are at Beruf Schule and don't do English at school any more but want or need it for work. Most people are in their 30s and 40s but you always get quite a few pensioners who want English for travel or just want to keep their minds active.

I have DD home today, there is something going on with her, I really don't know what to do, she claims to be ill when she isn't, usually I make her go to school anyway and she comes home perfectly happy, but sometimes (like this morning) she really does seem ill, but then she isn't... The obvious assumption is that she must be worried about something, but as she won't say what, and constantly going on about it seems a bad idea in case it plants worries or makes her feel compelled to invent some, I am somewhat at the end of my resources for working out what to do... DH says we should just be strict about only letting her stay home if she has a fever, and I guess I am going to have to do that, though I am sure it is possible to feel genuinely ill without a high temp confused

LentilAsAnything Wed 20-Mar-13 08:53:51

Thanks, Ploom. <settles in>

Is that Principal Vegangelist position still open, plats? smile Though I am not mentioning the V word until mid-April, as promised!
Glad you are feeling better.

LT, maybe you can go stay in the hotel too! smile

MrT, hope your DD is ok.

itsMYNutella Wed 20-Mar-13 09:08:52

Thanks for the new thread Ploom I really hope that spring is around the corner, I have definitely had enough of winter! It seems to go on sooo long here.

admylin I hope future shopping trips are more successful, but shopping for summer clothes while there is still snow/ ice on the ground (I saw some yesterday on my way to the dr) probably isn't easy smile

Linzer that does seem a bit OTT to make people stay in a hotel. DP had a room booked for him while he was working at the Cebit (although the hotel was probably further away than where we live) and the only realised he didn't need it on I think the second or third day. Perhaps if the hotel has a nice pool or something you could take advantage of it like Lentil suggested.

MrT that is a pity that something is making DD so unhappy at school - is Wednesday maths day? Is it usually the same day each week?

Thank you all for all the well wishes! i am feeling much better today. Dr said there are a lot of "Margen Darm" things doing the rounds at the moment. Fortunately DP can work from home and look after little man just bringing him to me for feeds. But, well it's another fun day of Chamomile tea, rehydration salts and Zwieback - I thought I had managed half a giant banana yesterday but it didn't stay that way for long confused

itsMYNutella Wed 20-Mar-13 09:12:17

Oh the dr was rather unhelpful - she can't give me any of the good stuff because I'm breast feeding and because DS is a tiny baby I can't really get that much rest.... Geee thanks doc, I feel better already! Obviously all I wanted was to be told the bleedin obvious hmm
The dr did also ask what I think of Hannover... I said it was ok and she went on about how the people in Hannover can be a bit miserable and moan a fair bit... Very strange Dr's appointment...

admylin Wed 20-Mar-13 09:34:43

Nutella sounds like you found a nice doctor who takes abit of time with patients! With mine I never get a single comment or word, he just looks/prods abit then puts comments in his computer and prints a prescription if needed. No frills!
Hope you feel better soon.

Linzer what a waste of money from dh's company! Although, I wish dh worked somewhere like that as we're still sitting on the cost of the up-coming Japan trip and won't get it back until the end of May leaving it really late for me to use it on some sort of trip for summer (haven't decided what yet).

Hupa sounds like a good route especially as it's basically a straight road all the way. I'd be tempted to try it if I wasn't so worried about the wrong side driving in the UK! Hope you don't get caught in traffic for too long.

tumbles my dd had days like your dd at primary in Berlin, I never got to the bottom of it really. Maybe it was just all round stress or maths, no idea. I used to let her have a day off if she complained of tummy ache but most days I would try and get her to have breakfast and a drink to see if she felt better and she often did by ten to eight when we had to set off to school (8:15 start). Hope you can get to the bottom of it.

platanos thanks for the tea tip. Did you get a wart plaster? I remember having one frozen off as a dc but no scraping or fancy plasters involved, although the freezing did hurt so maybe they don't do it the same nowadays.

Today dd has plans to start her school work (when she gets up) and ds is either going to the shops for me (proably not) or learning a new recipe for simple pasta with broccoli and garlic for a change! Japanese fancy dishes are OK but I think he needs to master some basics too!

LinzerTorte Wed 20-Mar-13 09:59:36

admylin When did your DC start having lie-ins? DD1 is 11 and still up by 8 am at the latest at weekends (often nearer to 7 am). With any luck hmm they'll all take after me and be morning people; I remember often getting up at 8 at the weekend when I was at university, when I really liked having the house to myself!

Nutella Ooh, I've just translated something CeBIT-related! (That was the text in which principal evangelist came up.) Sorry to hear the doctor wasn't able to help much; it must have been particularly frustrating after you'd dragged yourself all the way there. Hope you're feeling better soon, anyway.

Lentil Must have missed you not mentioning the V word - are you giving it up for Lent? wink

MrTumbles I have the same problem with DS sometimes and it's very difficult to know what to do. Insisting that DC can only stay home if they stay in bed, for example, (which I've seen mentioned on MN) isn't always very practical, either - at our school/KiGa, you're supposed to keep them at home for an extra day after they've had a temperature, which I did with DS a week or two back, but there was no way he was ill enough to stay in bed all day. The time before that he had headlice and I could hardly banish him to bed then either! <realises she's deviating from the topic>

hupa That sounds like a very doable trip - much quicker than it would be for us to fly back. If only my parents lived in a more convenient location; even when I was at university, going home for the weekend wasn't feasible.

Talking of which, DH's niece (at university in V) is apparently very homesick and everyone is extremely worried about her. DH thinks she should just move back home and transfer to university in the nearest city (20 mins away), which I can imagine is what will happen. She's always spent more of the week at home than at university anyway, and is apparently commuting every day at the moment. I remember them ruling out Graz because of the poor train connections (there's a direct train every couple of hours, which takes about 3.5 hours) and really had to bite my tongue about my six-hour journey with three changes. But then I wasn't going home every weekend...

admylin its good in a way to hear your DD was similar as she isn't any more... Linzer I did try saying she could only stay home if she stayed in bed, but at 8.30am she crept down, when I was reading to DS2, saying she was scared upstairs on her own (she has always been a bit weirdly hyper-social and hated being alone even when she can hear people in other parts of the house - until she was 6 she wouldn't even go upstairs alone to fetch something she wanted and always took DS1 with her hmm ) she sat quietly at first, then offered to take over reading to DS2, and has been playing with him ever since - she quite plainly isn't ill at all, she's being a horsey for him now crawling about with him on her back now hmm smile

Maybe I could just accept her having random days off and be one of those super dodgy rough round the edges mums who keeps her older children home to entertain the little ones so she can MN ... shock I was going to go to the gym today though DS loves the creche there and sometimes that is all that motivates me to go (I love it that I can leave him for just an hour and a half, peep in at him through the glass whenever I want, and they'd call me over the tanoy if he needed me, there are also usually only 3 or 4 children in there, and in term time very rarely any over 3, so its a really low stress - for both of us - way for him to be away from me a bit with little tots his age rather than kids the age of DD and DS1 and their friends, and immersed in German). Obviously I couldn't take an "ill" school age child though...

Thanks for the good wishes for DD Lentils - how's Frankfurt? You don't tell us much general day to day trivia, I think you should tell us an anecdote grin unrelated to veganism though please grin wink ... smile

Get well soon Nutella - sorry the doc was no use other than for a chat you probably weren't in the mood for! I had a rather odd paediatrician apt with Ds2 in the same vein recently, where she told me that I should get my older 2 to do more around the house, and shouldn't let my MIL tell me to leave DS2 to cry (which my MIL doesn't do - in fact he sleeps in her bed when he stays at thiers) ... Maybe good advice but kind of unprompted and not very medical grin

Oops DD has stopped entertaining DS2 and he is requesting my hand to lead me somewhere (he has taken up demanding I go on magical mystery tours recently). I also need to sort the kitchen for DS1's half birthday celebration after KiGa - oh yes grin

I'm back quickly just to say Linzer DD has been asking about your DD2 writing, did she see the last message? I know they go through phases of writing/ not writing, my DD is usually the worst one for it. I suggested to my DD that she just write a quick note to say hello rather than wait, but DD is worried your DD2 will think she is "silly" if she writes when it isn't her turn grin

LinzerTorte Wed 20-Mar-13 11:29:11

MrTumbles Both DD2 and I thought she'd replied to your last message - but I'll check, maybe she didn't or maybe it didn't send properly - and she's been asking for weeks when your DD is going to write next! I keep telling her that maybe she doesn't realise it's her turn and that DD2 should write a quick note to her anyway, but like your DD I think she feels a bit silly about doing so! If all else fails, I'll tell her that her last message didn't get through and she needs to write again. grin (Obviously, if it is her turn to write anyway, I'll tell her that!)

LinzerTorte Wed 20-Mar-13 11:32:49

Right, I've just checked, and it is indeed DD2's turn to write. blush I'm so sorry - please apologise to your DD from us, as DD2 didn't realise it was her turn. She won't be home from school until around 2pm today, but I'll get her to write asap after she comes home (she'll probably want to anyway, considering how often she's been pestering me about your DD recently grin).

LentilAsAnything Wed 20-Mar-13 12:37:14

Linzer, it was past the start of Lent, otherwise that would have been a good spell. But no, I was told I was a bit vegangelisty on here, so I said I'd not mention the V word for a month! smile

Get well soon, Nutella.

Tumbles, well, we are fine, thank you, DS is wonderful and a happy little scamp. DH is doing well at work, though feeling some frustrations with certain managerial egos there who hamper productivity and creativity, same story in many workplaces, I know (certainly was where I worked pre-DC).
I was never ever very good at anecdotes. Plus I am trying to lessen my online time. Um, hm. Weeks go by so fast. We do toddler classes, meet little friends, go to the park, swimming, same same! I was hoping we'd do more weekend trips, but factoring in car hire and one night in a hotel, and we're already at €400ish. I feel like I've done Frankfurt. It's fine, but it doesn't have the vibe of our last home (Wimbledon, London. That really felt like home to me.) Work is still held up on our property there, which is thoroughly depressing, as we could be earning on renting it out. But we have to wait for next door's planning permission before we can get ours sorted, as what we have done depends on what they get permission for. If they get what they want, we should hopefully get an extra room, which would be worth the wait in the long term, but it is a gamble, and in the meantime, I am feeling hacked off. Just want to get it sorted.
There, that was a ramble! Told you I wasn't good at anecdotes. smile It wasn't even really an anecdote, was it! smile

admylin Wed 20-Mar-13 13:08:22

lentil about the weekend trips, I noticed that Deutsche Bahn sometimes has some cool weekend offers that might interest you although train and 2 nights in Berlin adds up to around 300€ so still not cheap. Anyway, you might find some where that you fancy here
I never went for them as I can never figure out how it would work with my 2 teens and the fact that they won't touch each other with a barge pole let alone share a sofa bed in a hotel room - so we'd need 2 rooms which pushes up the price.

admylin Wed 20-Mar-13 13:15:00

Linzer you asked about when the dc started staying in bed so long.

Well, they've never been early morning people!
They started sleeping longer when they were about 11 years old though. Before that dd would get up at 8am on weekends and watch kids TV until I got up and ds stayed in bed until 9am. I guess that's just their inner clocks and they suffer alot getting up at 6:30 for school!

LentilAsAnything Wed 20-Mar-13 13:22:35

Thanks, admylin. smile @ not touching each other with a barge pole! smile

LentilAsAnything Wed 20-Mar-13 14:18:38

Ooh, I have an anecdote! smile
We have calendar blocks, same as this: www.jedicreations.com/images/games-puzzles/new/educational-puzzles-wholesale-exporter-manufacturer-CALENDAR-LARGE-SV401893_c.jpg. I am often a bit rubbish about remembering to change it every morning. This morning, it was on 11. Yes, I am slack! smile DS knows his numbers perfectly well, points at the 11 and says '20!'!!! It's the 20th today. Weird or what!

LinzerTorte Wed 20-Mar-13 17:40:12

Just a quick message to MrTumbles - DD2 has been out all afternoon, so I've only just showed her your DD's message that she still needs to reply to. She's absolutely convinced that she's already replied (and I do remember her saying fairly recently that her favourite animal is a rabbit!) and is now having a temper tantrum, so I'm working on calming her down... message to follow shortly, I hope!

Good evening! Dh has been on a business trip since yesterday and I am knackered, which is why have been a bit absent...again...

lentils I have to be honest, I never liked Frankfurt much. But then, I like picture perfect little cities like Lüneburg. Have you ever ventured to Marburg? All my three brothers went to uni there, and as I am quite close to them I spent a fair amount of time there whenever I was in Germany. I couldn't live in Marburg, but its gorgeous for a visit!

ploom I hope you are all better now?

* hupa* ages ago you asked me if my dad still goes back to Kassel from time o time. We haven't really been back since my granddad died ( I was 14) and my grandma moved to Timmendorfer Strand. His parents were the only reason he still went there before. My dad's favorite aunt lived in Eschwege and we used to go there regularly too.

mrtumbles I don't know what to suggest about your dd. it's difficult. Ds1 and ds2 refuse to go to kiga regularly. But I always make them, unless they really are ill. This morning ds1 ran away when his kiga bus arrived and I had to go and get him from out the garden. But then I know their behavior had to do with their asd, and the worst thing I could do is to let them feel like they can decide when do to what.

jenny haven't heard from you in a while. How are you? Did you have the appt for your ds?

platanos big hugs to you. I bet you are all high on adrenalin tonight!

We met up with a developer who lives in our little estate yesterday. He owns the last plot of land a d wants to build one of his houses there. He is planning to use the same interior as in his own house ( which is next door to the plot), which I would describe as 'luxus ausstattung'. Needless to say what he wants forint, we can't pay. Mainly because on top of the price for the house there is another €400/month of Erbpachtzins. But I had a cunning plan this morning. That developer let shine through that he'd be willing to sell us the Rohbau, and then we would do everything else ourselves. That in mind, I went across the road to our neighbors who own one of the biggest property de eloping companies here (mainly new builds). I asked if they'd be interested in doing the rest of the build, to more realistic specs. I only spoke to the wife, but she said her husband would get back to us on the weekend. So maybe, with a lot of luck, we might be able to afford it after all.

linzer how are you enjoying yourKindle?

admylin did you fin any of those squashy balls?

You probably saw it on fb, but I am sooo excited that I found a holiday let for us in Swansea for the summer. Not only because it means we get to see our good friends, but excited to get back to beautiful South Wales. Hopefully I'll also be able to go to Cardiff a few times a d meet up with friends there. I absolutely love South Wales and if there was work out there for dh we'd probably move.

Alo I am very curious to see whether ds2&3 will start to speak English. Ds2 still doesn't speak any despite understanding everything. Ds3 spoke English to me until he started kiga in October.

LinzerTorte Thu 21-Mar-13 08:05:46

Morning,

outnumbered Great news on the holiday let - I saw you were looking, but not that you'd found somewhere. Hope you have good weather for your stay; that's the one thing that would put me off a summer holiday in Wales (although I still go back to see my family, obv.). Having said that, it was amazingly good last August.
Am really enjoying the Kindle, thanks. I still prefer the look and feel of "proper" books, but it's very handy when I'm out and about and you can get some very good bargains on it.

admylin As DD1 only turned 11 a couple of months ago, there's hope for us yet I suppose! It was getting harder to wake the DDs in the morning so I thought we might be heading towards them sleeping longer, but they now both insist on getting up as early as possible during the week - DD1 leaves at 7 am, despite the fact that she only has a 10-15 minute walk to school and it doesn't start until 7.45 am, and DD2 has a tantrum if any of the others are up before her and likes to leave her blinds open so that she can wake up as soon as it's light. (I went in to wake her at 6.30 today and she was already dressed.)

Lentil Do you know how much longer you'll be staying in Frankfurt? Most of the places we've lived in before I was ready to leave after 2-3 years, but am now enjoying being settled in my old age. grin

MrTumbles I always used to feel like a selfish parent for insisting that the DC (well, DS) had to go to KiGa when I know other parents who would let their DC stay at home if they didn't want to go, but I felt like it would be a slippery slope. I tend to be fairly strict about DS going to school unless he's quite obviously ill (am not at all strict with the DDs as I know they wouldn't ask to stay home unless they really were feeling ill; DD1 has had about two days off sick in five years), but it's very tricky - a couple of times now he's come home and said that his teacher told him he shouldn't have been at school (last time was last week, when he had a cough; he was hardly coughing at all at home, so I was sure that PE was setting it off and wrote a note to the teacher asking him to be excused from PE).
It was much easier at KiGa, when I felt that they "knew" him better; I would tell them that he was complaining about feeling ill (it was always tummy ache) but I wasn't convinced - but they should phone me if he really was ill and I would come up and pick him up (which never happened). The one time I tried the same at school, his teacher told me to take DS back home as he wasn't looking well - of course, as soon as I closed the front door, he announced he was absolutely fine! Not much help to you, I realise, but I know what it's like!

admylin Thu 21-Mar-13 08:39:21

Morning. I've been up since 6.30am with a sore neck (pulled a muscle or something) and look like a zombie due to lack of sleep. Couldn't sleep much last night either.

Linzer there is hope for them sleeping in, I'm sure I read somewhere that teenagers really do need more sleep maybe to cope with the last growing spurts?

outnumbered good news on the summer holiday! Wish we could get something organised but still have to wait abit. How exciting about the house too, hope it works out.

Lentil clever ds! I once looked after a little boy in France and he had taught himself the whole alphabet by watching the French version of Countdown! His mum didn't even know he'd done it as she was always in the kitchen doing dinner when the show was on so you never really know what the little ones pick up just by observing the world around them!

We had quite a few cm of snow yesterday but the sun is out this morning so I'm hoping the drive will be clear before I have to get the car out of the garage.

Lentils that is clever smile My eldest knew all her letters from fridge magnets before she turned 2 (but she called them M-for-mummy or D-for-Daddy etc.) but for some reason she didn't get numbers nearly so soon - except the number 2 smile DS2 can count (things, not just by rote) but doesn't know any written letters or numbers, although he knows they are letters or numbers, he calls them all "Number 4" or "Number 9" etc. at random - when he's playing with foam letters in the bath he'll shout "Oh no, I dropped a number 4!" but there is no way of knowing if it was a 4, or a 5, or a W grin

Admylin hope your neck is better soon. Are you not always up at 6.30am though to wake the kids for school, or do they sort themselves out now? envy

Outnumbered good news on the holiday

I am having a bit of a rubbish day - DD was up and dressed by 6am and eager to get to school, odd girl, but DS2 was vomiting in the night and had woken DS1 too, so the boys and I had only just fallen back to sleep, and I found it really hard to wake up. She went happily off for the bus at 7am, and I took DS1 to Kiga but then DS2, who had seemed happy since waking, vomited everywhere, down himself, down the inside of my coat, the back of the car... while I was strapping him back into the car. Got us home and scratched the car really badly on the gate post pulling into the drive. Sometimes everything happens at once and you feel as if you just can't do this any more... I have no winter coat now until its washed and dried, and its snowing outside, but luckily DS2 has 2... Not sure what I'm going to do about the scratch...

admylin Thu 21-Mar-13 09:37:00

tumbles poor ds, hope you don't get the vomit bug too.

I also have a scratch on the car from the garage wall. I read that you can use a wax crayon in the same colour as the car to 'fill' the scratch then polish over it or buy coloured car wax to polish the car with. If I had a wax crayon in my car colour I would try it but it's a sort of greyish colour that isn't standard in a colouring box!

I usually get up at 6.30am yes but it's school holidays this week (and next ) so I could have been having a long sleep in! Stupid neck! No idea how I did it but it's agony dulled by ibuprofen and warm cherry stone cushion.

Ah - forgot you had mentioned holidays - ours are next week and the week after. Now you have my sympathy rather than envy for the 6.30am get up smile

DS2 was sick in my eye and hair (and all over us both) just after I put the laptop away - vomiting toddlers are so messy, at least bigger ones use a bowl/ the toilet! He is a bit more clingy than usual (wanting to be on my lap more) but seems totally happy, he is very wriggly, fidgety and chatty on my lap and is getting down lots too, he is only bothered about the sick 10 seconds before and then until he's cleaned up, then he's happy again. The only thing bothering him is being covered in it for a minute, and the fact I won't let him have milk, only water and dry toast, he keeps shouting "No sorry! Don't like it! Where's a milk?"

We actually have some car paint in the same colour as my car, as I scratched it on the other side before (also on the gate post) and decided not to pay the €300 excess to get it fixed - DH will paint the scratch to stop it rusting and I will just drive what looks like an old banger around even though the car is only 2 years old... It gets me down when things like that happen because they are so stupid and make me so angry with myself - nothing like scratching your car as you pull into your own driveway whilst covered in toddler vomit in a stinky car with the toddler moaning in the back that there is sick on his trousers...

I've had a sore throat forever too, made worse by teaching and chalk dust yesterday eve as well as obvious ongoing lack of sleep being worse last night due to vomit clean up - woe is me sad smile The laundry pile is also applying for recognition as a nation state in its own right, and the machine was already on before DS2 vomited on my coat so I've only just got that in...

LinzerTorte Thu 21-Mar-13 10:38:29

MrTumbles If it's any consolation, the back of our once lovely-and-shiny-and-new-looking (about two years ago) car is now covered in scratches and the odd dent - and I can't blame it on vomiting children, or anything/anyone except myself. You have my sympathy re the vomiting; I hate, hate, hate it with a passion - the fact that I'm emetophobic doesn't help, although I can just about cope if it's only the DC affected (not if DH catches it, though).

admylin Hope the neck is better soon; it sounds very painful. Yes, I haven't quite given up hope yet - I'm sure that things will change once they reach the teenage years and I'll wonder what I was complaining about! (Am not really complaining anyway, as they don't get up ridiculously early, i.e. before 6 am, and don't expect us to get up at the weekend with them either.)

Have just finished translating a letter for a neighbour; I seem to have done more unpaid than paid work this week (also translated a few paragraphs for a nearby hotel earlier in the week). Ah well, good to keep my hand in - just a shame the last two potential (paid) jobs I had ended up being cancelled.

mrtumbles I did something similar last Saturday. I went into town with ds2 and he was being really loud in the back of the car, as I was trying to concentrate getting the car into a tight space. I ended up breaking my left wing mirror and am incredibly annoyed with myself! It has to be fixed, there is no way around it. Checked a couple of garages yesterday and all quotes come in at between 500-600€!

I hope your ds2 s better soon and doesn't pass on the vomiting to the rest of you!!

LinzerTorte Thu 21-Mar-13 11:49:31

I've done that too, outnumbered. grin

LentilAsAnything Thu 21-Mar-13 12:14:15

My anecdote was not about DS knowing his numbers, but telling me that the date was wrong, and how could he have possibly known??? smile
He is so funny, he loves spelling, well, thinking he can spell. If DH or I have a top with writing on, he spells out the letters, e.g. DH's Animal hoody and goes A N I M A L spells DADDY!!!! Or if a loaf of bread has HOVIS on it, he goes H O V I S! Spells BREAD!
He knows how to count to ten in Spanish from watching Dora. His current obsession is learning how to tell the time.

out, I shan't take it personally your don't like Frankfurt! It's not like we chose this as a dream destination, it's just where the work came up. Not been to Marburg, I shall discuss it with DH.
Great news about Swansea, and the property in your current hometown. Hope you get it.
Linzer, you are not very old, are you? I think those of you with slightly older children are probably not much older than me! I started late! Not sure how long we will be here, DH is having some stresses at work with managerial egos, the typical kind of thing we've probably all encountered. I feel he is being wasted there. Plus his hours are long, and I don't feel the work-life balance is great. I don't like to say too much in case anyone from his work is stalking me on here!<paranoid>

MrT, that is so funny about your DD being up and ready for school, bless her!!! So sorry to hear about poorly DS2 though, poor tyke. Hope your coat dries fast. Hm, I was just debating chucking my second winter coat in my minimalist quest, but perhaps I'd best keep hold of it for emergencies.
A car scratch is just a scratch, you are ok, sorry of that sounds dismissive, just trying to say it could be worse!

admylin Thu 21-Mar-13 12:50:15

Lentil it's good that you have an initial 2 year contract for the stay in Frankfurt so you can look forward to some other place if your dh isn't too keen on his job! My dh is having constant stress with the 2 bosses. Lately he's had to just keep his mouth shut and humour them but it's not good for the mind.

outnumbered that price is abit steep isn't it for a mirror? Dh broke ours but luckily it was just the outside casing so he glued it back together with super glue!

Linzer I remember your dc snitching on you about the back of your car! How did your dh take it in the end? Mine sometimes sighs abit about the fact that it'd now sell for even less because of this or that scratch but I remind him that we'll be driving this one for a long time and it'll not be worth much anyway by teh time we've finished with it!

I have just woken my teens up to tell them lunch will be ready in 15 minutes!

LinzerTorte Thu 21-Mar-13 13:27:28

shock at you just having woken your teens up, admylin! I remember DD1 once sleeping until 3pm on the first day of the holidays, but I still wonder whether she might have been ill...

DH usually sighs in an exaggerated kind of way when I reverse the car into something yet again, but he doesn't usually get too upset. I think the fact that we'll also be driving the car until it's on its last legs, or rather wheels, probably helps.

Lentil I wasn't being too serious about being old, although it's all relative, isn't it - at nearer to 40 than 50, I still feel relatively young but remember being horribly embarrassed by having parents in their mid-thirties when I was at primary school. Whereas most of my friends didn't start having children until they were in their mid-thirties and some were over 40... At any rate, after 15-odd years of never spending more than 2-3 years in one country, I just feel too lacking in adventure (rather than old!) to go through it all over again.

Must go and help DD1 revise for her biology test now. It seems like the English teacher giving classes the same test at different times wasn't a one-off, as one of the other 1. Klassen has already had their biology test - one of the girls in DD1's class has a cousin in the other class, who's shown her the test (apparently they won't need to label parts of the body but will need to know the different food groups). Of course, the teacher might be giving them different tests - but going by past experience, I wouldn't be surprised if they got the same one.

LentilAsAnything Thu 21-Mar-13 13:29:42

admylin, hope your neck is better soon. I've done something to my back, like a twinge at the bottom of one shoulderblade. It's been over a week, bearable, but there. Not sure what I've done. Slept funny, or too much iPad!

out, ouch at the quote for a wing mirror!!! That's outrageous!

LentilAsAnything Thu 21-Mar-13 13:35:18

Oops, I am not doing well on here today, didn't refresh page before my last reply!
admylin, they could still let him go, and he could still quit. It really is not good for the mind, there's unnecessary stress, and things could be so much easier. I had the same problem where I was before I left and had DS. People need to leave their egos elsewhere. Hope your husband is ok, it's a bad situation.

Teens do need extra sleep.

LT, yeah, I think after so long not feeling quite settled, we will want to put down some roots. But for now, the plan is still 18-30 months moving here and there, seeing the world.

lentil from your reply I gather that perhaps what I said about Frankfurt didn't come across as intended. You said previously that you have had enough of Frankfurt. And that's why I said - agreengly- that I don't like it much, and tried to point you in the direction of some nice places. I never meant to offend in any way.
We are also in a city we never thought we'd be living. It's not the prettiest of cities, but it's where dh' job was. And now it does feel like home.

Re my wing mirror - it's completely broken and needs to be entirely replaced. Maybe it's even more expensive because its all electric? I don't know...

LentilAsAnything Thu 21-Mar-13 16:57:06

Oh no it's fine! I didn't take it badly at all! smile Not in the least offended. Sorry if I gave that impression.

Ah yes, electrics will bump up the price, but still, yikes!!!

Linzer I just read my DD's message to your DD2 - crazy child has started with "I forgive you"... shock I am not quite sure what she was thinking, don't think she's quite grasped the social niceties ... Please ignore her loony ways! grin

I have a worry about DS1 that is very "Living overseas" specific, or more precisely bilingualism specific, might actually try to remember where the bilingualism board is and post there...

We speak English at home almost exclusively - if the DC have friends here they speak German to them, but I still speak English to my DC and expect them to reply in English - actually I insist they do. I speak German to their friends, and DH speaks German to the kids when they have friends here, but 95% of the time English otherwise, even if I am not in the room. They speak German all the rest of the time though, like a lot of, or maybe all, the kids over about 3 on this thread pretty much everyone they see day to day is/ speaks German.

The language switching has never been a problem at all for DD, but I can see that it is becoming one for DS1. His German is definitely becoming stronger than his English, where DD's English has so far kept pace (she loves words and asking about meanings of any and every word she doesn't understand when I read to her at night etc. but DS1 either just lets the words of a bedtime story wash over him without bothering about understanding as long as he gets the gist, or reverts back to choosing picture books)

Anyway, the thing is, DS1 has started to stammer sad sad Only in English. He is easily able to identify that he does it when he can't think of the English word - it happens mainly when he is re-telling an anecdote that "happened in German" - at dinner he was telling a story about wanting to close the window at Kindergarten, and he started to stammer because he had forgotten the English word "window" shock It doesn't seem to worry him atm but DD started to tease him and I nearly bit her head off blush

WWYD? I cannot stand the idea of my kids losing their English and only understanding it not speaking it - I know its what happens a lot in our type of situation but I just can't accept it, hate the idea, makes me want to pack them up and move back to the UK... Maybe its irrational but even thinking about it makes me want to scream. But I also can't give my 5 year old some horrible speech impediment because I insist on making him speak English when, I am loathe to see it but have to make myself see, he probably thinks in German sad

Do I have to let him speak German to me?? sad

LinzerTorte Fri 22-Mar-13 07:32:47

MrTumbles DD1 stammers a little occasionally when she's speaking in English, is in a rush to get her words out and can't think of the English word. Tbh I've never really seen it as too much of an issue as it's not a "normal" part of her (English) speech and she doesn't seem to worry about it - it mainly seems to happen when her brain is obviously way ahead of her mouth. She's almost always done it, but especially when her German started overtaking her English (towards the end of KiGa, IIRC) and it doesn't seem to be getting any worse so I haven't been overly concerned - I think I've just seen it as a (relative) lack of fluency in English (compared to German) rather than a speech impediment.

Do you think your DS would actually want to speak German to you? You said you insist they speak English to you - as I do with mine, I suppose, but "insisting" only really consists of a gentle reminder to DS occasionally when he forgets and I'm sure none of them would actually want to switch to speaking German to me. I do allow them to speak German to me when they have friends over; often, for example, one of the DC and their friend will come up and ask me something in German, and I'm pretty sure the DC speak to me in German then so that their friend doesn't feel excluded. As it only happens in those circumstances and they're happy speaking English to me the rest (95%) of the time, I don't have a problem with it and don't see it as a slippery slope.

There's an interesting article here, which says that you should "carefully determine the nature of disfluency to determine whether the child is stuttering or merely struggling with linguistic development in two languages" (which is what I'd assumed with DD2, as it only really happens in English).

Btw the start of your DD's message made me laugh. grin

admylin Fri 22-Mar-13 07:41:24

tumbles I think you do have to accept the situation to a certain extent!

You live in Germany and sound as if you're settled here so it's inevitable that your dc will/have become more German than English. It came as a shock to me too when dd stopped speaking English and she doesn't even have a German speaking parent or grandparents like your dc. She just refuses! Ds on the other hand can swap between languages with no problem at all.

But you're dc are still bilingual and understand everything in English so I wouldn't make too much of a big thing out of it and just carry on always speaking to them in English and making sure they have access to English TV or books.

Another bad night for sleep due to my neck so I have given in and have just taken some ofthe mega strong pain killers that the doctor gave me.

LinzerTorte Fri 22-Mar-13 08:39:03

admylin Do you just carry on speaking English to your DD and she replies in German? That happened in a family I was au pairing for - the mother spoke French to the children and they replied in English (they spoke German too), but she wasn't too bothered as she said that they would be able to switch back to active use later if they wanted to. I have a few friends here too whose children more or less refuse to speak English to them (some of them carry on speaking English, some have switched to German), but of course they still have a huge advantage over monolingual Austrians.

I think it's more or less inevitable that, if you've living as "locals" (i.e. not mixing solely with other expats and you don't send your children to an international school - in which case, the local language will end up weaker), your children will end up being stronger in the local language. The language that they're schooled in will obviously have a big influence; when I was helping DD1 to revise biology yesterday, I was trying to use the German words as much as possible as there's no point giving her extra English vocabulary to learn at the same time! She gets confused if I try to explain maths concepts to her in English (and I really struggle to do so in German), and generally says she'll wait until DH gets home.

admylin Fri 22-Mar-13 09:19:15

Linzer yes, she always asks things or answers me in German but I just carry on and speak English and she definately understands it as she only watches English fims or videos and even reads books for her age group in English now so I'm not worried.
As you say, there's no point doing maths and other school related homework in English as it just confuses her. Ds on the other hand, can do everything in both languages with no problems at all, even translation is easy for him.

A miracle has occurred - ds is up and has had breakfast!

itsMYNutella Fri 22-Mar-13 09:26:42

Good moment everyone!

outnumbered great news that you have found a holiday home. FX the business with the report gets sorted. The news about the house sounds interesting too. Hope you manage to get something sorted there.

admylin sorry to hear you have a sore neck that is stopping you from sleeping properly, that's not good! And you were right, the Dr was being nice and mrtumbles hit the nail on the head, I really wasn't in the mood for a chat. It is fortunately less than ten minutes walk to the Dr's but I had been sat in their hot waiting room for almost an hour feeling like death I just wanted to lie on the floor confused although yesterday I was much better and today I think I'm over it smile

Interesting discussion about the language problems. It must be quite a challenge to manage both languages as a parent but also for the kids to process everything they are learning in two languages... DS is very chatty and makes lots of (very cute) noises but I know real speaking is a long way off. Although I imagine until he starts school/kita/kiga English will be his stronger language will be English because he will spend a lot of time with me.

We went to the osteopath yesterday for our second appointment. It really does wear him out. But then he wanted to feed every two hours overnight confused so although I am over the tummy bug the cold is clinging on and making me snotty has been going for over 3 weeks now....

itsMYNutella Fri 22-Mar-13 09:33:39

Good moment? <face palm> bloomin iPad! Good morning!

Sod it maybe I should go back to bed?!

AntiqueMuppet Fri 22-Mar-13 12:39:49

Good moment, Nutella! Hope you feel better soon smile

MrTumbles Sorry to hear about your DS starting to stammer. Sorry I can't add anything useful to the discussion but I have my fingers crossed it resolves itself soon without any distress to your DS.

Thank you for the new thread, Ploom!

Sorry to hear you've hurt your neck, admylin. I hope the painkillers kick in quickly and that it gets better soon. Call the Midwife is brilliant! It is making me ridiculously broody though...

Linzer Was it the same test as the other class this time too? Hope your DD got the mark she wanted.

outnumbered Ouch at the mirror quote! I hope you find somewhere that will do it more cheaply for you.

Lentils I know a few people who don't really like Frankfurt, but I'm not sure what their reasons were. I liked the anecdote about your DS and the calendar - spooky!

Hello to anyone I've missed!

I barely get chance to get on the laptop to post at the moment (although I have been lurking on my phone) as DS' favourite activities this month are climbing furniture (which is now all screwed to the walls after he almost pulled an entire chest of drawers on top of himself - thank goodness I was standing close enough to dive across and stop it falling), wrapping things like cables around his neck, sucking on plugs and then trying to plug them in the sockets, eating the plants (well, trying to) and his new favourite - opening doors. Especially the cellar door. Where there is no stairgate. He is gorgeous and funny and brilliant but he's really, really making me wonder whether I really do want a second at the moment! Hopefully playgroup has knackered him out enough this morning that he will have a decent nap today. Needless to say I have failed miserably this week in giving up caffeine and chocolate. I have a caffeine IV in one arm and a chocolate IV in the other and am booked in to have a second set of eyes transplanted in the back of my head grin

LentilAsAnything Fri 22-Mar-13 15:12:06

MrT, sorry to hear about the stammer, I hope it is nothing serious or too stressful, and resolves easily.

Ant, climby monkeys are so much fun, aren't they! smile

Good moment, Nuts! smile

Sorry to hear your neck is still bad, admylin. Hope the drugs work.

I don't think there's anything really objectionable about Frankfurt (apart from all the dog poo, but I think this is a nationwide thing?) but for me, it's just not got that vibe. I guess enough people do like it here though. And there's the river, and rivers are always nice. Public transport is good, it's very easy to get around on the U. Decent green spaces. But I am happy wherever DH and DS are.

tumbles been meaning to write all day. I can understand your feelings regarding your ds1' English getting worse, or rather his German getting stronger. And I think it is very good that you insist English being spoken in your house. But his German eventually being his stronger language is inevitable really, as you live in Germany, his friends are German, he's at a German kiga etc. that doesn't mean he'll lose his English though.

Just as an example, my ds1 spoke much better English than German until he started kiga at 4. Since then his German has become his stronger language. And he often can't find the English word fast enough when he talks to me. Rather than 'stammering' like your ds1' my ds1 simply uses the German word. I then simply help him along and repeat the German word in English. I wouldn't worry about his stammer just yet!

Also I was amazed at how well my ds1 can speak English - without any German words - when he has too. The friends in Wales we are visiting this summer, came to visit us a year ago. Ds1didn't speak any Germish at all when speaking to them - I guess because he knew they wouldn't understand. And with me he chooses the lazy way, as he knows I'll understand him anyway.

What I am trying to say with all my rambling is, I wouldn't worry about his English. It may not become his strong language - unless he ends up living in the UK - but it will always be his mother tongue.

antique your description of your ds made me smile

nutella I hope you feel better soon!!

admylin how is your neck now? About 6 months ago I had a really painfully stiff neck several times within a few weeks. Once it was so bad I had to go to the out of hours doc. He gave me painkillers but they didn't even touch the pain. I hope you've been prescribed something that works!

linzer and mrtumbles your dd's text messages make me grin

Ds1 has been better at home these last few days, but he's had terrible days at kiga sad. I'm having one of my 'shall we try medication or not' moments. I know that if we choose to give medication a go, it will take several months to find the right medication and the right dosage. And I am wondering if we may o him a favour trying it. I am worried that he will be seen as the naughty child straight away by his classmates, that he won't have a chance to make friends, perform to his ability etc. I just do t know. A year ago I already had blood tests done for him in preparation for medications, but then chose to wait a little longer. It's such a difficult decision as they are such strong stuff. On the other hand, I have heard very good reports about it both from patents as well as children. Actually just the other day I spoke to a neighbor. It turns out her son has ADHD, and they started medication in the summer. She wants to get away from it long term, but says that for the first time in hs life ( he s 9) he sent an outsider anymore at home and he now has friends at school. Sorry, more rambling, I'm terrible blush

Hope everyone has a good weekend and poorly ones are feeling better very soon. We have ds1' birthday party tomorrow. But I've asked both of our babysitters to come, so hopefully everything should be under control smile

I am off to bed as my throat and head are killing me, but just wanted to say thanks for the replies on DS1's stammering. Maybe I am over reacting. It doesn't seem to worry him at all (I guess it helps it is not in the language he uses "publicly" and I don't actually think he did it at all today, maybe I was over-reacting.

Antique your Ds sounds like my ds2, although mine doesn't eat plugs thankfully shock

Linzer DD had a friend here til late so we didn't see your DD's message til too late for tonight, but I have told her it is there and she will reply in the morning (hopefully, as I have to leave the house with DS1 at 7.30am to get him to a football tournament, oh the joy!)

outnumbered good luck with the birthday party - is he turning 6? I know nothing about meds for ASD but taught a boy with ADHD whom it made the world of difference for in terms of his happiness and ability to concentrate. Is it similar medication?

wave at everyone I haven't replied to, I really need my bed, for however long DS2 actually lets me sleep in it... (He hasn't been sick since yesterday but was grumpy and restless today, hopefully he'll be well tomorrow).

mtrumbles yes, it's the same sort of medication. Ritalin or concerta afaik. Loads of children with asd also have ADHD or show symptoms of it. The reason ds1 would be getting meds are hs lack of impulse control, his aggressive behaviour and being easily distractible - thus same as ADHD really. In fact, ds1 has a second diagnosis f DAMP, which includes ADHD as well.

I hope your ds2 let's you have some rest tonight nd that your throat s better in the morning!

platanos Sat 23-Mar-13 08:13:49

ooh, been busy here, just a quick post as I am about to get ready to go to swimming. oh why did I not listen to your sensible advice and give it up? grin.

out hope the party goes well - good luck! Sorry, don't know anything about the medication. I can see it is a hard decision to take. great to hear you have found somewhere to stay in Wales. I take it you are driving? Hope your cunning plan for your new house works out- fingers crossed.

mrtumbles how old is ds? he's quite young isn't he? Also how long has he been stuttering? Might it just be a phase? (And I also lose it with my dc if they pick on each other for things like that). I am no expert, but I grew up surrounded by people who were exposed to at least two languages and I think perfect bilingualism is quite rare. One language is often stronger, or it depends on context. I went to an english speaking school in Spain where I did A levels, then moved to Scotland to uni and although academically I had no problems, I struggled with words for different foods - because they had always been in Spanish. Then I had dc in England and still struggle with pregnancy, birth and children related words in Spanish. Don't dispair just yet - it might all smooth itself out as your ds grows older.

linzer thanks for the proofreading advice. you are right: I don't need that. I have ordered a few books which look promising and will take it from there. is your dh back from his business trip? took him all of 5 minutes to get home? how very strange!

admylin how is the neck? hope it is better.

lentils you sound busy. and ds sound cute and curious to learn. Frankfurt did not grab me when I visited, but have since heard it is nice to live in. how long do you think you will be there for?

Antique your ds sounds busy too. had to laugh at your ivs and second set of eyes. All this research going into cosmetic surgery and nobody has thought that eyes in the back of the head would be much more popular and useful than triple M breasts. grin.

nutella hope you shift the cold. Has ds sleeping and feeding settled since you posted?

ds is now on a strict diet of no nuts, no fruits with stones, no raw vegetables, no apples or pears. It seems very restrictive as he's only had one reaction to a brazil nut. But the dr from the alergieambulatorium rang me straight away to tell me to cut them out until I get the allergy test results (on 4 April) and I can talk to her about it. I feel a bit funny about this, of course I don't want to give him things he is allergic to, but I don't want to overdo it all and become obsessed that he might have a reaction. I guess I will just have to wait to see what the dr and results say.

Must rush, have a good weekend!

cheaspicks Sat 23-Mar-13 09:29:03

Short post from phone, hope I can post properly in a day or two.

mrtumbles according to my David Crystal book a phase of stuttering is very common in young children. He even said one of his children started to stutter and it made him worry even though he knew it was normal and temporary. The phase lasted 7 months iirc. He recommends completely ignoring it, so I think you're right to be annoyed with dd for drawing attention to it. I think if your ds isn't bothered by it himself then it may well just be a development phase he will grow out of. Dd has also developed an occasional stutter when speaking English (or at least noone has mentioned it in German), but she doesn't seem aware of it and it's not constant - almost like being overwhelmed by simultaneously thinking and producing certain consonants. I would say her English is still better than her German, but of course she's younger than your ds1.

<waves to everyone else>

LinzerTorte Sat 23-Mar-13 13:44:26

MrTumbles While packing books for our few days away, I finally found my bilingual parenting books (hidden behind others in the bookshelf). There are a couple of pages on stuttering in The Bilingual Family, which gives a couple of recommendations for parents of bilingual children showing signs of disfluency:
1. Don't make the child stop talking one of the languages, particularly the home language, as this will be counterproductive and make him/her believe that something is wrong with his/her speech (particularly if there are sibilngs who are perfectly fluent in both languages)
2. Take your time before taking the child to a speech therapist, as it could be a definite step towards transforming what is probably only a momentary difficulty into a long-lasting problem.
Not sure if that's any help, but I thought I'd pass it on!

platanos That does seem like quite a restrictive diet; hopefully you will be able to reintroduce the fruit fairly soon - results permitting, of course. I think I mentioned that my friend with the Brazil nut allergy has been told to avoid all nuts.
Yes, DH got back at about 1.30 pm on Friday - the earliest he's ever finished on a Friday, I think! He generally ignores the largely unwritten Austrian rule about finishing at lunchtime on a Friday, despite having made a lot of it before we moved here. hmm

outnumbered I've also noticed that the DC speak far less denglish when we're at my parents' as they know my parents can't understand a word of German so have to make much more of an effort.
Hope that DS1's birthday party goes well and isn't too stressful; DD2 and DS have already started talking about their parties (in July!) and I'm beginning to feel stressed already... grin

Lentil I've never been overly impressed with Frankfurt, but really liked the Taunus area where I went a couple of times on our school exchange - I think it was then that I decided I wanted to live in Germany. (Well, that worked. I did actually manage to meet DH in Germany; he just wasn't German. grin)

Antique Your DS sounds incredibly similar to DS at that age - I think it was around that age (or probably even earlier) that I decided a fourth was out of the question! He came as quite a shock to the system after the two DDs; DD1 was quite hard work sleep-wise in the early days, but they just weren't into absolutely everything - and the more dangerous the better - the way that DS was.
Yes, it did turn out to be the same biology test but DD1 doesn't know what mark she got yet as she only had it on Friday.

All the male neighbours (and one ex-neighbour) are out doing manly things with the wood in the garden and I've just been asked to make coffee for them all by DH, so must go - waves to anyone I've missed.

IamthegreatProcrastinator Mon 25-Mar-13 21:38:51

Hope you don't mind my temporarily crashing the Kaffeeklatsch (I would like to crash it more permanently but sadly DH doesn't speak German and therefore probably quite reasonably refuses to move there). I am coming to the end of my absolute favourite tea - DM's (the health food shop) own brand "Symphonie in Gelb" (mango and coconut). I absolutely love it and can't buy anything similar over here, and am sadly unlikely to go back to germany in the near future to stock up.

Does anyone know where I can get some? I tried amazon.de but apparently it's not available sad Have they stopped making it?! TIA!

admylin Tue 26-Mar-13 07:28:28

IamthegreatProcrastinator sounds like nice tea! I don't have a DM Markt near me but if I do go near one I'll have a look for you!

Hope everyone else is fit and enjoying the Easter holidays even if it is slightly too cold! Dread to think how high the heating bill is going to be at the next Abrechnung! Dd has her last dyslexia training session tomorrow and I was wondering if we should get the teacher something but dd thinks not. I'm not sure, she's very nice and has helped alot but then again she is only doing her job.

admylin I think it would be a nice idea to give her something small, maybe a box of chocolate or a bottle of wine, as a small gesture. She is only doing her job, but it sounds like she did a very good job - and we all like praise when due smile we always, for example, give Tim's bus driver some home made biscuits on the last kiga day before Xmas, and we'll be getting all his erziehern as well as bus driver a little present when he leaves for school in summer. It's not expected, but I am sure it's appreciated.

Will your dd need any more help and training and will that be it now? Sorry, I don't really know much about dyslexia at all...

admylin Tue 26-Mar-13 08:12:07

outnumbered a bottle of wine might be a good idea yes. The dyslexia training is finished for now and we'll wait and see how she gets on but she has really improved alot especially with the typical double letters like double t or n/m and the ä/e sounds and words with silent h that she almost always got wrong before.

Dh has an interview next week for Berlin. Atleast he's pleased that he got a response atlast and if they offer him long term and more money he's at a point where he'd accept.

He'll try and get them to make a better offer here of course but it all depends on their mood. This week they've stopped him doing 2 things in his research because they didn't understand it! Ridiculous really, to employ a researcher and then stop him making new discoveries! He already had an idea that they refused to publish then 6 months later someone else published it so it's lost for him now. In Japan in May he has to give a symposium talk and the boss has told him not to include some part of his results but he's going to say it anyway as he's so sick of being held back.

Hi Everyone!

Plantanos DS1 is 5 and a half. It is still very young, its easy to forget how very young he is sometimes because although he's not as tall for his age as Ploom's son he's a big, tall, broad shouldered boy, and also because having a toddler brother who is is vastly bigger than somehow makes him seem older - I often think of DS1 and DD together as my "big kids". But yes. 5 is just a baby in a lot of ways, and after all he is not even going to start school for another 18 months, and even in the UK he'd only be in reception...

Linzer you are right it is definitely a 2 languages thing - he said so himself when DD started to mimic him, she said "why do you always go MMM MMM MMM in the middle of a sentence?" and he told her "its just cost I couldn't think of what that thing is in English", he didn't seem flustered by it, though sometimes he gets cross when he can't think of an English word (rather than because of the stuttering) and I have to tell him he can say it in German.

It is crazy to get hung up on it and my issue, I have decided. Weirdly I think letting German overtake English seems far more like "letting go" of my kids than starting Kindergarten or school ever did. It makes them so much more separate to me than a few hours a day 4km down the road! I absolutely know and accept you have to let your kids go - but not at 5! Its always been really important to me that they speak English indistinguishably from native speakers, as I have Australian and American acquaintances whose children speak very strange English indeed, and it's always made me wince inwardly and vow I'll never let that happen with mine. I also know other non Germans (not English speakers) who tell me their children refuse to speak their mother tongue, and know a lot of adults who don't speak the language which technically "should" be their "mother tongue" (my DH is one of them, as is the father of one of DS1's friends - in fact even my mother's mother was a Welsh native speaker, but she spoke Welsh with her sisters (my mother's aunts) but English when speaking directly to her children, as her husband didn't speak Welsh - my mother's brother picked the Welsh up but my mother didn't). I know its different in the cases of the adults, whose parents didn't speak their language exclusively to them as children, but it still seems sad sad

Oh blimey I have written an essay and not replied to anyone, and been all me, me, me. I am sorry! I will come back and reply to people not about me in a bit! grin For now the kids are at Oma and Opa's today and for the night, and DH is away on a work training course, so I am going to try to blitz my absolute pit of a house! Its a bit overwhelming, but it has to be done, and now is the perfect time, there is no excuse! Back later, when I have got the basement hobby and "Wildness" rooms back into a nice inviting, orderly state - it only takes the big kids to go down there with their friends a couple of times without me, and me to forget to drag them back down after the friends go to sort it out, for the place to become a bomb site of dried out paint pots, playdough and glue, solidified brushes, torn paper, spilled glitter and beads, toys all over the floor, scattered ball pit balls... etc. etc. wonder how many hours I'll be down there!

AntiqueMuppet Tue 26-Mar-13 11:52:05

No, MrTumbles, DO NOT CLEAN! Get yourself a cup of tea and get into bed for a few hours. Catch up on some sleep. Glitter technically counts as interior design and is far less important than some shut-eye while you have the chance.

That is an order. grin

Thanks Antique smile I have been trying to sort the basement though, have done a tip and a charity shop run, things always take longer than you think, have decided to totally re-organise it, and while at the charity shop handing over 2 bin bags and a crate of toys, I picked up some cool colourful drawers that will make excellent "Mr Maker" style "Doodle Drawers" for the hobby room, and a table football table to go down there too, (without leg but it can go on another table) for €5 which will make DS1 a very happy boy smile

The house so needs sorting, and nobody else does any form of housework or household de-cluttering or sorting but me, so the longer I leave it and the more excuses I make or the more I accept the "leave the housework for now" advice, the worse and more depressing it gets! I am not a natural cleaner but I will feel better when its done (which may be the early hours of tomorrow morning at this rate, if I am lucky...).

admylin good luck to your husband and good for him for including his reaserch in his speech, its amazing how blatant his boss is about stealing his research and ideas, he really needs to get out of there!

Procrastinator I don't drink German fruity/ flowery/ herby teas really, and miss PG tips smile Our nearest DM is 20km away and I only go in a few times a year, mostly to get photos printed, but I will try to look if I am passing!

LinzerTorte Wed 27-Mar-13 10:45:58

Just very quickly - will post properly when we're back home and I have a minute to myself - Procrastinator I had a look this morning for the tea you mentioned but DM here in Austria doesn't appear to stock it. They may have different products here of course, although the range is more or less the same as in Germany IIRC.

platanos Fri 29-Mar-13 07:47:44

procrastinator I also had a look in my local dm (I am in Austria too) but no luck. sorry.

linzer hope you had a nice time away. where did you go? was it warm and sunny? On the Friday lunch time thing....many in my work disappear then too. My dh said he would have more free Saturdays when we move here...still waiting for that dream to come true grin. Have you been to Madame Tussaud's here? or the time travelling place? Thinking of what to do with the dc. Though think they won't know most of the people in MT so not sure if they will enjoy that.

mrtumbles I would agree with antique. But I also know what you mean, it just does not get done otherwise. did you get it all done? were the dc excited when they came home?

admylin hope the interview goes well for dh. Those work relationships sound dreadful, esp the boss. How does your dh cope? Hope the holidays are going well.

Easter holidays here...grey, rain and it is cold. sigh. Today we have a day of running errands, and will think of something exciting to do tomorrow. hope you all have a nice weekend. and stay healthy.

LentilAsAnything Sun 31-Mar-13 15:06:37

smile Happy Easter Egg Day smile

itsMYNutella Sun 31-Mar-13 19:40:39

Procrastinator I will try and remember to look in DM for the tea you mentioned.

Happy Chocolate egg day lentils ! Hope you had a nice day. Was almost possible to go out and make little snow bunnies hereconfused really hope spring will get going soonhmm

mrtumbles it seems a shame to use your child free time cleaning. Although when my mum was here and we cleaned the flat I felt so much better afterwards. Everything looked less dusty lovely and tidy. Funny how cleaning makes can make you feel; although it seems such a pit that it doesn't stay clean! grin

admylin any news on the work front for DH? I hope he finds a nicer work environment soon!

Happy Easter everyone!! We were at the ILs today. Little man did very well being handed around for cuddles.

We took him out for a little walk and dropped in on DP's cousin & aunt. The cousin's MIL was also there and congratulated us on the arrival of our son & then told me that he isn't old enough to sit up (DS was being held in a sitting position on DP's knee while DP's aunt was cooing over him) apparently "er darf noch nicht sitzen" ...ok.... Smile nod aaaand forget. grin

LentilAsAnything Tue 02-Apr-13 18:46:18

Well done on nodding and smiling and forgetting, Nut! smile

admylin, your husband's work situation sounds truly dire. Poor guy. I hope things change for him soon.

Today is our one-year anniversary of arriving in Frankfurt! It really has flown.

LinzerTorte Wed 03-Apr-13 08:28:15

The Easter holidays just flew by here and the DC went back to school today. We now have a couple of inches of snow, it's still coming down and I've given up on spring ever arriving.

platanos Did you find something to do in the end? No, we haven't been to Madame Tussaud's; we did think about going when we were in London but like you, decided that the DC probably wouldn't know enough of the people to make it worthwhile. We did go to the Time Travel place not long ago, which was very good although on the expensive side IIRC (DH was given the tickets as a present at work).

We went to a Therme in Burgenland, which was nice and relaxing - we could see it snowing inside, but didn't need to venture out as there was an underground passage between the hotel and the spa. Spa treatment vouchers were included in our stay, so I went for my favourite red wine bath (red wine in the water and to drink). grin

Happy anniversary, Lentil!

Nutella Smiling and nodding is the way to go, especially with know-it-all relatives...

MrTumbles Did you get the sorting done? I'm often fed up with how much stuff we have everywhere and am constantly trying to declutter (although probably spend more time moaning about it to DH than actually decluttering). Listening to Radio 4 podcasts helps alleviate the boredom a little, plus I have to keep reminding myself how much better I'll feel once it's all done.

admylin Wed 03-Apr-13 09:41:35

Morning all. Back to school for my 2 today too Linzer - all I can say is thank goodness! I've just been and given their rooms a good air and clean out as I just let them slob around in there and not do anything over the holidays. Must admit, ds's room never gets really messy but dd's is quite bad. Wine bath sounds nice, do you really bathe in wine?

Wow Lentil that went by quickly! How long are you planning on staying from now?

Nutella did you get some traditional Easter food served at your IL's place? Going by the amount of people out shopping for food on the Saturday they must have some big feasts going on! We never 'did' Easter at home so it was just a lazy bank holiday with far too much chocolate but nothing special - is that just my family or is it a big thing in the UK too?
I know some of the dc's friends get big presents as well as easter chocolates.

platanos how were the holidays? Did you get up to anything nice? Were you off work or do you have Hort or child minders arranged?

Tumbles hope the play room stays nice after all your hard work. I'd love to have a basement with spare rooms, dd would occupy atleast 2 rooms with all her hobbies and I could chuck stuff down there out of the way!

Dh is in Berlin now at his interview. He'll be back this afternoon though. I don't think it'll be long term enough to make it worth another move and it was advertised at a level lower than he actually is now so he has to convince them to recruit him at that level too. Who knows, I could be having a nervous breakdown at the thought of another move or of having a Wochenend-Ehe if we can't find a place to live, if they want him!

admylin good luck to your dh. I hope they make him a good offer which would make the move worthwhile for all of you!

Quite a few things happening here too. On Saturday we will be viewing some flattie puppies. Lets see if we let our hearts or heads decide ;)

On a few minutes ago I had a very exciting phone call re a house in the neighbourhood. A week ago we had posted flyers through letter boxes of all houses in our direct neighbourhood (4 streets) in Kirtsy&phil style, seeing if anyone was thinking about selling up. Then a gentleman came to see me and said he just needs to convince his wife. He's a lovely man and sadly has terminal pancreatic cancer. The house sounds very promising and I've been impatiently waiting for them to get back to me again. Well, his wife just rang to arrange a viewing for Saturday!

I'm so excited smile

lentils happy anniversary smile

mrtumbles dud you find some replacement fairy wings for your ds2? The pics of him wearing them are too cute!

No more snow here at the moment but very cold brrr

Hello to everyone else!

admylin Wed 03-Apr-13 14:21:18

outnumbered how exciting! Hope you like the house and they agree to sell it to you. Clever idea with the notes!

Dh has just phoned after his interview. They agreed to pay his correct level and want him to start on 1st of May. He said he couldn't leave all his work here so quickly but he has 1 week to think about it and he can start later. Sounds like a good job for him but he forgot to find out how long the job contract would be for, so he'll have to e-mail about that. I don't know what to think about it all really.
Of course there's still the chance they will throw themselves at his feet with all sorts of good offers here if they want to keep him! The last time he threatened to leave the good vibes only lasted a couple of weeks but he got his contract lengthened until 2015.

platanos Wed 03-Apr-13 18:01:34

oh no.... I just lost a long post sad and have to go and make dinner so no time to post further. It wished you all lots of nice things wink

LinzerTorte Thu 04-Apr-13 07:13:01

admylin Good news on the interview; sounds like you'll have a lot to think about. Is your DH tending towards accepting the offer?
The wine bath has a couple of jugs of wine (maybe 4 or 5 litres) added to it, so you're not actually bathing in pure wine (DH was joking about me drinking the bathwater, which DS took seriously grin). I don't know how drinkable it would be either - the wine itself, not the bathwater - as they pour your glass from another jug.

outnumbered Exciting news on the house; hope the viewing goes well on Saturday! I think that's a good way to do it (friends of ours tried a similar approach), as I'm sure all the decent houses here go by word of mouth, if they don't stay within the family as so many seem to do. There was nothing even half-way decent on the market, apart from newbuilds (which all have minuscule gardens), when we were looking.

platanos Oh no, that happened to me so many times that I now automatically do Ctrl+C before posting. Of course, the one time I forget to do so is always the one time that I lose the post.

admylin Thu 04-Apr-13 10:00:20

Linzer yes, he's tending towards it after all he's had to suffer here I am trying to be understanding and happy for him. I'm going to need some hell of alot of handholding to get me and the dc through another move though. I promise you I won't be calm about it!

It's freezing cold again here after 1 slightly sunny and mildly warm day.

itsMYNutella Thu 04-Apr-13 17:17:56

admylin I hope that you get all your questions about DH's job sorted out. DP is thinking about moving with his work and I'd rather not have to resettle again but at least DS won't know the difference.

procrastinator I had a good look in the big DM near me and couldn't find your tea- sorry.

linzer I can't help but imagine coming out stained by the wine after a wine bath hmm.... I'm sure that doesn't happen but I'm just imagining a tide mark around the shoulders grin

outnumbered that does sound promising! Hope it goes well for you!

DS has been a bit out of sorts yesterday and today. He has also had some calpol (so glad I got little bro to bring me some!) and that seemed to really help. No idea what the problem has been... I'm hoping it isn't teeth shock he is just 3 months old and right now he is lovely - I don't mind if he stays just as he is a bit longer . Chatty and smiling lots grin

itsMYNutella Thu 04-Apr-13 17:20:24

admylin you asked if I had traditional Easter food... I don't know what traditional Easter food is in Germany... Or the uk. We never made a big fuss about Easter, mostly just enjoyed a long weekend grin

LinzerTorte Fri 05-Apr-13 08:01:13

Nutella Traditional Easter food in the UK is Easter eggs, isn't it? wink I've no idea what traditional Easter food is here either; my ILs have Easter lamb (cake in a lamb shape) for breakfast, but otherwise it's just endless sweets and chocolate from the DC's Easter baskets.
No tide marks or any kind of staining btw - it was a copper bath, so that probably disguises any stains on the bath tub. grin

admylin How would your DC feel about moving? I sometimes think we need to move to force us to declutter... I couldn't face the upheaval, though!

DD1 got her biology test back yesterday and got a 4 - it was quite difficult, I thought, but she also made some silly mistakes. DD2 has a Sachunterrichtstest on knights and Romans coming up next Friday and was revising at breakfast this morning... sadly only one of the sheets she has to learn is the same as DD1 had, so it doesn't look like they'll be having the same test - that would have made life easier. grin

admylin Fri 05-Apr-13 08:26:19

Linzer shame about the history sheets being different! My 2 are doing exactly the same stuff just a year after the other so dd has all ds's old sheets and work books with answers filled in! Funny though, she doesn't want to use his stuff, she'd rather try it herself and I'm always saying she should save time and just use ds's then she can spend more time on actually learning it! Then she shakes her head and tuts and says mum you're not strict enough, an honest mum wouldn't suggest that!

We haven't really talked about moving with the dc yet. Ds is really happy where he is, settled, liked by teachers and class mates. Dd would like a new adventure I think so she wouldn't mind as much but I still feel for them if they have to join a new class in year 9 and 10. I'll probably feel worse than they would though as they've just hit the ground running every time we've moved (while I recover from breakdown)! Anyway, he's still got to do all his negotiations first.

Nutella sound slike the Easter I know too! A big line up of massive Easter eggs on the shelf and if I remember rightly a visit to some sort of sheep herding country show (country bumbkin). We also had to have a new outfit right down to the socks, everything new.

LinzerTorte Fri 05-Apr-13 08:53:06

Yes, I think that sometimes children cope with moving better than the parents do! I remember being quite happy to move at the age your DC were, although I'm sure it was a huge upheaval for my parents (and I don't think they ever really settled in the new area). Uprooting the DC is the one thing that would put me off moving now (OK, one of several things!) as DD1 doesn't cope well with change and the other two are so settled where we are, have very good friends here, etc., that I would hate for them to have to start from scratch. But of course some children are much more adaptable than others.

One of my friends knew someone who'd had a child in DD1's primary school teacher's previous class and DH wanted me to ask (via my friend) if we could borrow all of this child's old school books so that we knew what to revise with DD1. On the one hand, it would have been a huge help as revising for tests with DD1 was such a nightmare, but OTOH I felt like it would have been cheating, particularly as we didn't even know this other child. I did ask but nothing came of it in the end, and I was quite relieved - although it would probably have saved a huge amount of stress.

itsMYNutella Fri 05-Apr-13 09:17:37

It's very quiet in here... smile Hope everyone is simply busy having lots of RL fun.

admylin I hope it isn't too stressful for you and that before you do any packing or moving you are satisfied its the right thing for all of you.
DP is the one who gets very stressed about things. I try to ignore stuff until I have to do something about it which doesn't work either be more relaxed.

DS has been a bit out of sorts the last couple of days but then had an amazing sleep last night! He slept from 21:30 ish until 03:20 then woke and fed again at 4:30 I put him back in his ed about 5 and he slept until just after 8 shockgrin it was fantastic!!

admylin Fri 05-Apr-13 11:42:45

Wow nutella hope he keeps that up! Nothing like a good nights sleep is there?! Is he teething? I remember getting teething gel flown in from the UK, and calpol although I'm sure there were/are German versions available!

It is quiet isn't it? I think some Bundesländer still have Easter holidays maybe.
My microwave is beeping at me again, I tell you that's the first thing that is going if we have to move! My washing machince is also going, it has the nickname of killer machine when it is on as it's so loud, it sounds as it it's trying to escape from the bathroom with force.

itsMYNutella Fri 05-Apr-13 20:10:05

admylin I think some of the grumpiness is teeth but he was fine through the night and has slept pretty well today too; so I'm hoping tonight goes well. I think putting him back in his bed helped. I love to be cuddled up to him but he does tend to wave his arms around and keep us both awake- when i put him in his bed I swaddle his arms.

Our washing machine is also ancient, probably closely related to yours by the sound of it! We have a super modern tumble dryer and an ancient very non fancy washing machine hmm ah well, stuff comes out pretty clean so it'll do. Why does your microwave keep beeping? You've said about it beeping before, it sounds very odd.

Hello everyone

Nutella I am envy of your night's sleep after yet another terrible night with Ds2, but I hope it continues for you!

Admylin your children do sound very adaptable. I would hate to uproot my DC even now, and they are young - but I have made such a huge effort to make sure they are settled here and have so many friends - DS1, who is quite shy and used to refuse to stay at other people's houses to play has come out of his shell now and suddenly become really popular with the other boys (though he's very much a boy's boy!) and has friends ringing him all the time now just like DD. DD is on the surface very confident but she's more fragile underneath I think, and if she didn't make a big crowd of friends quite quickly I think she'd take a huge knock - when school's not going well at least she still has lots of fun playing with her friends here... DC3 is the only one I wouldn't worry about moving! Your DH has been so miserable for so long though that the move must be worth while - my DH is in IT (and willing to do pretty enormous commutes) so can change job without moving (which is a good job as he seems to feel compelled to do so every 2 years), but it must be hard for academics who have to move city if they want to change employer!

outnumbered how was the house? I don't think we'll ever buy again now, we've been in this rented house almost 6 years - though DH has said in the past he'd like us to buy a small place once the kids are all grown up!

I didn't get all the sorting done when the kids were away - its endless really - but I got the worst of it done and rid of a lot of stuff, which is good. Ds3 has his own room now (previously a toy/play/junk room), after 6 months or so of sharing with DS1 didn't seem to be working in terms of his sleep, but he is, if anything, sleeping even worse now... Guess he needs time to get used to the new set up perhaps...

We are still on Easter holiday - well, the kids go back on Monday. DD is at a sleep over now, but we are picking her up at 9 (the friend she is staying with is also an early riser - they were both up before 5am when she stayed overnight here previously) and going to Playmobile Land smile We are meeting the in-laws there (DH's idea, but I said OK even though we've seen a lot of them recently - the kids will enjoy it and I suppose it is less stressful to have more adults - though I took 4 kids there on my own last summer so I don't really buy the need for 4 adults for 3 kids!). I just wish I was doing the day out on more than 3 hours sleep - maybe I can sleep in the car ...

*I always get my DC/ DS terminology in a muddle - I don't know why, small brain clearly (I prefer to blame lack of sleep)... I only have 3 DC, no DS3, just a DS2 who is DC3, it's all too much for me, sometimes I would rather just use names and be done with it, as I am sure I am pretty identifiable anyway if anyone I knew bothered to find this thread!

platanos Sat 06-Apr-13 08:24:44

mrtumbles I am impressed at all that sorting. wow. hope you have a good day at playmobile land. I think you could sneek off and have a little snooze in a corner, leaving a ratio of one adult per child.

nutella that was a nice long sleep! how was last night? mine slept much better all swaddled up too...though can't rember how long that lasted.

admylin any news from the job? It is true that, in general, children adapt better than parents. When did you last live in Berlin? Good chance to get a new microwave and washing machine if you go, and you can treat yourself to one if you decide not to go...

outnumbered lots of possible exciting new things - possible puppy and house? hope the viewing goes well today. Let us know....

Linzer bath full of wine sounds interesting...but what is it meant to be good for? Only in Austria! I am surprised there was no pumpkin seed oil in it...or would that only be allowed in Steiermark?!?

We went to the allegry dr for ds this week. all a bit confusing, as there are some fruit and veg he can't eat when the pollen he is allergic to is flying about. But should be okay for the rest of the year. I am not sure what to tell the kindergarten (and school and hort in september). I guess an outright ban is easier for them, and less risky for ds. I don't know if they can administer anti histamines, cortisone tablets or use the epipen in emergencies. I shall have to ask.

And dd1 (10.5) has started bed wetting again. sigh. I think it is the stress of the 4. klasse and the impending changes. let's see what happens.

Easter was quiet here. The dc were in kita/hort for 4 days and then I had some time off. We made it to bratislava one day - it was actually warmer than here, and we managed to have a lovely walk in the sun! saw hot cross buns in marks and spencer -is that the other traditional easter food? easter eggs and hot cross buns?!. A colleague of dh's is coming over tomorrow with some osterschinken that her mother in Kärnten prepared - she says that is typical food for Easter. Well,the children and her will eat that while dh and I have some other vegan goodies!

right, off to swimming....but first I shall copy this in case it vanishes. have a sunny, healthy, relaxing weekend! (one can hope wink)

admylin Sat 06-Apr-13 14:12:44

platanos good that the doctor has found out what your ds is alergic to. Hope it's not too hard for him. Are there any food sorts that he realyl loves that he can't have anymore?

tumbles hope your ds settle sin his own room once he's used to it. Are oyu all sleeping on the same level/floor?

Nutella same here, my machine washes the clothes properly and even though I keep willing it to break down it just keeps on going!

Dh is getting a formal job offer with the respective details by Tuesday. Then the big question is, how does he go about telling them here and waiting to see if they come up with some better offer. His boss is capable of getting so enraged about the colleagues pinching his researcher that he could just make him an offer he can't refuse just to spite them!

LinzerTorte Sat 06-Apr-13 14:52:58

admylin Good news on the formal job offer. Sounds a little tricky with your DH's current boss, though; I have no idea what to advise, as DH and I have only ever told employers that we were leaving when we actually handed in our notice and knew that we'd definitely be going.

platanos 4. Klasse is quite a stressful time, isn't it - does your DD get stressed about Schularbeiten? I'm sure they said that red wine is supposed to be good for your skin (but they probably would say that grin) and added a few other things to the bath water, although no pumpkin seeds thank goodness! M&S has hot cross buns (and DH insists on buying them) all year round for some reason; we bought a few packets when we went a couple of weeks ago.

MrTumbles I'm sure that anyone who knew me in RL would instantly be able to identify me on this thread (in fact, someone I know told me she recognised me from a post on the freelance board), but I just make sure I don't post anything that I would be horrendously embarrassed by in RL. I also assume that it's highly unlikely any Austrians I know would find me on here (so do moan about my ILs a little), but I'm more cautious when it comes to English-speaking friends.

I was supposed to be working this weekend but the job didn't materialise, DH is out in the garden helping the neighbour to chop up wood from the tree (again) and the DC are all over at the neighbours' so it's blissfully quiet here at the moment. I suppose I ought to do something productive. grin

admylin that is good news about the formal job offer smile

plantanos that sounds stressful for your DD. I worry already about my DD as she'll only be 9 in 4th Klasse - she won't even turn 10 til she starts 5th Klasse, I so wish we'd kept her back... Too late now! I hope your DD starts to feel more settled and calmer soonsad The allergy test results also sound complicated - I guess it has to be a blanket ban with Kindergarten otherwise somebody will get mixed up and he will be fed something he shouldn't have at the wrong time. Are you also trying to educate him about what he can and can't eat and why? Quite confusing for a KiGa age child!

*Linzer hope you enjoyed your peace and didn't do too much!

SIL came to Playmobile land too - she was waiting in the car when we met MIL and FIL on the way there, so we had 5 adults and only 3 kids! A bit crazy! SIL is great with DD especially, they have a bit of a bond and SIL is only 23, so she climbs about the place with DD, which is nice. MIL hogged looked after DS2 until he got tired and grumpy because he was missing his nap and wouldn't sit in the pushchair to let himself fall asleep, then of course he was mine all mine hmm but that's normal... To many adults is a bit too many cooks though, as the in-laws have firm ideas on such outings (for example you must do a rund outside first, it is not appropriate to do the indoor part first - although I pointed out that the indoor part is quieter in the morning and packed late afternoon, as everyone does the outside circuit first... You also don't eat or buy drinks there (waste of money, even if its our money) but I like treating the kids to a rare fizzy drink and plate of chips on the type of outing that only happens a few times a year hmm Also i sometimes feel as though I must have been put on mute - none of the adults listen to a word I say - resulting in DS1 being marched off in the wrong direction for the toilet by FIL despite the fact I'd pointed them out (I had to run after them or he'd have had an accident as they were heading back to the ones at the entrance, not the ones 20 meters from where we were) and various other things. DS2 also gets really stressed out when people wander off, and spent a lot of the time bordering on a tantrum yelling "Oh no" Where's OMa/ Opa/ SIL's name/ DD/ DS1/ Daddy/ Mummy" or whoever he wasn't with, and the in-laws were always wandering off so we couldn't move on to the next area til we'd found them. MIL is especially bad as she is a heavy smoker so wanders off to smoke... The kids had a good time, but honestly I find taking the kids places by myself less stressful than having "help"! Back to school tomorrow... we've got to go to the in-laws yet again next weekend for FIL's birthday, they are helpful but I think we've seen rather too much of them recently!

admylin fingers crossed the written offer is a good one. Is there any point listening to his current employer's 'contra offer'? So far it hasn't sounded like they stick to their words. Although I completely and utterly understand how you must feel, thinking about starting all over again!!! I would dread that too!! At least your dc seem to cope ok with impending changes.

The house we viewed was beautiful. Sadly it doesn't have enough bedrooms sad people who don't know our circumstances must assume it to be totally acceptable for two children to share a bedroom. Which would be the case in that house. Or, alternatively, we would have to cut a chunk out of the living/ dining room to create a master bedroom. But that would leave not enough space for us, three active kiddies plus big dog. Also, the garden seems quite a lt smaller to what we have now and we would struggle to fit swing, sandpit, trampoline and slide in and still have plenty of room to run around. As gorgeous as the house was - and the couple is lovely, I think we will have to keep renting and hope something better will come up eventually.

Re doggies: as long as our landlord gives us his written ok in time, we really will be getting a little, very gorgeous flattie lady in two weeks time!! Fingers crossed everyone that the landlord gives his permission in time. He has no legal grounds to deny us the right to keep a dog, but of course the law doesn't give a timeframe how quickly he needs to respond to our request hmm

How have te hols/weekend been for everyone?

Eastpoint Mon 08-Apr-13 07:47:42

Hi, I'm crashing your thread because I'd like some advice, I hope that's ok. We're currently on holiday skiing and I thought I had enough tranexamic acid with me - heavy nightmare period. Is it available over the counter in a pharmacy in Austria? Thank you.

LinzerTorte Mon 08-Apr-13 08:18:00

Eastpoint Sorry, I'm really not too sure - is there a pharmacy nearby where you can check? I had a quick google and according to Wiki's German site it's rezept- und apothekenpflichtig, which means you can only get it at a pharmacy (Apotheke) and need a prescription (Rezept); I would assume that would apply here in Austria too. However, it could still be worth checking at a pharmacy just in case - plus they might be willing to give you medicine that would normally be rezeptpflichtig (it happened to me a little while ago). It's Tranexamsäure in German, if that's any help!

outnumbered What a shame about the house. We found it very difficult to get a house with enough bedrooms; even the villas here only seem to have three (admittedly huge) bedrooms at most. Exciting news about the dog; hope it all works out. What's a flattie btw? I did google, but am assuming you're not using NZ slang for flatfish!

MrTumbles Your Playmobil visit sounded a little stressful. I also know how you feel about being put on mute! Although in my case, my ILs will ask me a question and then stop listening to my answer mid-sentence; it drives me mad... DH says that their hearing isn't good (although SIL is the same and I'm sure her hearing is fine), which I can appreciate, but surely you can see that someone is still talking to you even if you don't catch what they're saying. hmm

Lovely and sunny here today, although it was still quite chilly out when we walked to school. It's supposed be 17° on Thursday, but I'll believe it when I see it.

Eastpoint Mon 08-Apr-13 08:25:52

Thank you Linzertorte I'll give them a try later. In the UK you don't need a prescription anymore, but I just messed up. My GP is of the old fashioned variety who thinks periods are just not that much trouble, every time I visit I think I must change practice. I think a flattie a flat coated retriever btw.

Thanks again. Tchuss

Eastapoint I'd check at the pharmacy with Linzer's information, but if you need a prescription ask the pharmacist to direct you to a doctor, there should be one you can see on a drop in basis who will write you a prescription.

I wondered what a Flattie was too but forgot to ask - I was imagining one of those flat faced dogs, but a flat coated retriever sounds much nicer! smile We are possibly going to become regular dog sitters to 2 very tiny dogs, partly to appease DD's obsession with getting a dog. Not sure how it will work out as the owner seems to be at least as particular about them as anyone would be about leaving a toddler with somebody they only know slightly for several nights, but we'll see! If we do ever get our own dog it would be a medium sized breed, but dogs are hugely restrictive in terms of being able to go away on holiday/ for long days out (Playmobile Land would have been a problem for example) so its very much undecided and won't be happening especially soon!

For the first time in his entire life I had to wake 5.5 year old Ds1 for Kindergarten today. He's a really good sleeper and always has been, but he's always up before 6am. DD wanted to be taken to school rather than catch the bus, and she has a cough so didn't mind helping her avoid standing in the cold at bus stops etc. so I said OK - then at 6.30am DS1 was still asleep! So I had to wake him as we have to leave by 7.15am if we take DD. He was quite confused when he woke, having never been deliberately woken up from his bed before! I was reading the Tanya whatshername sleep advice thread and there are people on there defining children getting up at 5.30 as a sleep problem - for some reason this is the one thing these days that makes red mist descend before my eyes, and I want to slap them around the face with a wet fish and tell them that is just called having a child, its not a sleep problem! Argh. Must avoid all sleep threads because they make me cross! Although some people on there with older SN children have sleep problems that must make them feel like that about me of course!

itsMYNutella Mon 08-Apr-13 09:01:04

Sorry Eastpoint I can't help at all begone what Linzer has already said. Hope you manage to enjoy your holiday perhaps eat lots of chocolate/ drink hot chocolate

Well DS has been quite settled over the weekend, I'm hoping he isn't lulling me into a false sense of security before sprouting some teeth or having another major growth spurt. It might be unlikely but if he could consistently sleep 21:30 till 3am, feed, back to sleep until almost 6, feed then sleeping till 8 I might actually start to look less tired soon grin
He is incredibly active. Just fought some clothes onto him. No wonder babies sleep so much, he never stops! When you lay him down he tends to stretch out his arms so he looks like a little T grin then when he gets excited he thumps his arms on his belly.

Have to get ready for my ruckbildung class. Will say hello to more people later!! Sorry for probably really boring post grin

itsMYNutella Mon 08-Apr-13 09:02:05

*beyond - it was auto correct... Honest!grin

mrtumbles i guess it depends on yourself, but to me dc getting up at 5.30 is def a big problem! Which is why ds2&3 were given a groclock. But maybe that's just me being selfish, just like me insisting an 7pm bedtime for all three.
How is your ds2 at night, being in his own room now?

linzer I said to dh the other day that you only realise three dc is not the norm when you look for either a suitable car or house, as there really isn't much choice. I know so many people with more than 2dc, I often forget that it more than average.

Yes, a flattie is a flatcoated retriever. They are gorgeous and fantastic with children. I think if we waited for the kids being older and a bit more independent, I would not want to go back to bring restricted. And as I am still at home we decided that its the perfect time as I will have plenty of time for the little pup. And I am hoping that maybe having a puppy will get rid of my broodiness wink

nutella yay to your ds giving you a bit more sleep!

easta haven't heard of it. I have very heavy and painful periods and take buscopan plus. That is prescription free at pharmacies. Good luck

BertieBotts Mon 08-Apr-13 11:34:04

Hello all!

Move is looking rather imminent now so I thought I'd rejoin the thread. We're currently visiting DP and getting the lay of the land a bit. DS loves the trams and all the million types of sausage, and DP has successfully introduced him to Schnitzel!

I have found an English speaking meet up group in Karlsruhe so am starting to meet a few people. We're going to someone's house tomorrow - is it customary to take anything when you go to someone's house? I don't want to appear rude!

cheaspicks Mon 08-Apr-13 12:03:23

Bertie, I would take something, Germans always seem to and people living in Germany may be used to it. Better anyway to bring an unnecessary gift than feel embarrassingly empty-handed. We've received quite a few little pots of flowering spring flowers recently - quite a nice alternative to chocolate/cut flowers (if you're stuck for ideas!)

BertieBotts Mon 08-Apr-13 12:17:53

True! What kind of thing to take? Biscuits/cake etc or something else?

Bertie cake is standard, flowers also acceptable, I'd say biscuits only if home made / bakery ;) Main thing is its unusual to turn up empty handed unless you're already close and visit frequently.

Outnumbered his sleep is still dreadful, 1-3 hours to fall asleep and at least 4I wake ups a night, often up to 7, and it gets progressively harder to resettle him, so he's pften only asleep 20and mins then takes an hour to resettle towards the end of the night. That's why I get the irrational rage when I hear a full nights sleep and a 5-5.30am waking described as a "sleep problem" - I know it is irrational as it doesn't make any difference to me, I just think people have no idea how lucky they are. Both my older 2 got up at 5am every morning until old enough to respond to bunny clocks and reward charts, obviously I wanted them to sleep a bit later ideally, but even befote DC 3 I'd never have defined starting the day at 5the as a "sleep problem"- - I've always assumed its something most young children do!

Phone has inserted lots of random extras into that post! Oops!

TabithaGraves Mon 08-Apr-13 15:29:06

Hello all, hope it is OK if I join you here even if I am both American and currently in the US -- we are moving to Cologne for my husband's work in August with our two toddler daughters (and dog) and I have been reading through this thread and its predecessor with interest. DH is a native speaker but I am not (I'm American) -- what I know of German I have mostly learned from a) 1 year of university German, b) one summer spent in Erlangen on exchange, and c) listening to friends and family, working with some German clients etc. etc. etc. As a result my comprehension is fairly good but my spoken German is characterized by very poor grammar and frequent confusion between aktiv/dativ/genetiv, etc. For those of you who did not study German extensively at university, may I ask how you found things in terms of how easy or hard it was to pick up more German, make yourself understood, how long it took before you felt comfortable speaking socially in German, etc? I will be working but in an international firm where the majority of my actual work will still be in English, but with respect to socializing with others, I know I will need and want my German to improve.

Many thanks in advance! If you have any other tips to share about moving to the Cologne area, believe me, I am all ears.

Tabitha you will be fine. I spoke no German at all when we moved here, and have never studied it (aside from a night class I started while heavily pregnant and with a small toddler, which I gave up half way through). My German now is about the same as you describe yours to be blush. I am fine chatting to mums of the kids friends about topics I am familiar with, but my language skills are not good enough to "be myself" and make close friends, which is unfortunate but if you work for an international firm you will presumably make friends that way anyway.

I would advise you to get out there in your local area - playgrounds etc. and talk to any likely looking mums you can for your children's sake - getting to know as many locals as possible is the best way to integrate your children, and get them (and you) practising the language. I have got to know a few ex-pats recently (we live in the ountryside so I don't see English speakers much) who all say their children are excluded by the local children - strangely enough all the mothers socialise mainly with the ex-pat circle and generally got their kids together with the children of their ex-pat friends, rather than making any real effort with the mums of children their own children will end up at Kindergarten and school with, so they have made the way hard for their children both by not bothering to help them meet local children and by not giving them early opportunities to pick up the language, IMO) Talk to people, join local German toddlers groups, music groups, sport groups recommended by local mums rather than (or of course as well as) ex pat ones, if you are staying long term.

Of course if you are only staying short term, or intending to stay longer but use private international schools, there is no reason not to stay in ex-pat circles if you prefer.

As you will be working have you sorted child care? It is not always easy to do esp. for children under 3, unless your company ha an arrangement? I don't know Cologne though, Germany is wildly different in different states.

TabithaGraves Mon 08-Apr-13 16:03:37

Thanks MrTumbles for your reply -- we have partially sorted childcare but will need to secure the rest. The girls have been enrolled in an international pre-school that DH has visited, toured, etc. but I will need to pin down aftercare. DH is going over 2 months before the rest of us, so we are hoping that he will be able to sort this before we arrive. As he is the native speaker, it is probably better that he is the one making the advance move. As of now, we are going over "only" for 3-4 years, but who really knows. Our last international secondment was for 3 years but we did not yet have kids at that time.

I think your advice about making the effort to integrate locally sounds incredibly sound, and I know I will need to make a real effort in this regard, probably mostly with weekends while not at work.

admylin Mon 08-Apr-13 16:07:47

TabithaGraves as far as I know Cologne is a big enough city for there to be plenty going on. Have you started organising your move yet? Will you have any relocation help from your company? From the sound of it you'll be fine with that level of German and alot of Germans speak English and will love the chance to test it out on you!

Bertie sounds like you're settling in well. It's good that you've found some groups and got to know some locals too. Have you found a final place to live yet or are you still looking around? I'd say take something when you go to visit someone even it's just a bag of bakery donuts or brezels even.

outnumbered shame about the house but great aboutthe puppy! We had trouble just finding a flat with 3 bedrooms so the dc had one each. When we did find one there was always one tiny box room and 2 big bedrooms so difficult to put one dc in a box room and the other in a big room. In the end we found a place with 2 quite small dc-rooms and a big master bedroom (which I find a total waste of space, no need as we really only sleep in there). In an ideal world we need a house with cellar envy like tumbles so we can have a hobby and office too.

nutella hope that sleep pattern becomes a habit for you! That's what I had with my 2 for quite a while, later their get up time was between 8 and 9am so we had a struggle when kindergarden started as we were always the last to arrive!

Linzer how annoying that the ILs will ask you a question and then stop listening to the answer mid-sentence! Strange!

Well, the job offer should arrive tomorrow and I suppose then we'll have to face it and decide. He's employed here until 2015 - so what if this job is only for 2 or 3 years, is it worth it? How do you negotiate a relocation sum (I doubt universities give one)? I know they will match his pay here atleast as they asked for a copy of his last pay slip and I know they want him for sure so we should be able to negotiate.

admylin Mon 08-Apr-13 16:09:49

Tabitha just saw your post! Great that your dh is German speaking so he can do all the sorting out at this end before you come! Good luck with the move, must be starting to get exciting now! Are you shipping all your stuff over?

TabithaGraves Mon 08-Apr-13 16:46:59

Thanks, admylin, I am getting really excited now but also rather nervous -- the logistics just seem overwhelming so I am taking a bit of an ostrich approach about the whole thing at present. Yes, DH's company will organize the move and ship the contents of our house here over to Germany, so that is immensely easier to have that taken care of -- we need to finalize arrangements for housing in Cologne though so that we can have somewhere to send all of the stuff! We also need to get moving about renting out our house here in the States.

I have been following your posts about your husband's work and competing job offers, and all I can say is very best of luck to you guys in sorting out what makes most sense for him and for you as a family. These kinds of decisions can be so difficult to pull the trigger on either way.

BertieBotts Mon 08-Apr-13 16:57:00

No we're still looking. DP is on the hunt for apartments! We've got a viewing some time this week but not sure what day.

Eastpoint Tue 09-Apr-13 06:43:16

outnumbered linzer ItsMYNutella Where we are staying is quite small so I went to the Arztclinik and spoke to the receptionist - no Apotheke here. They were not familiar with the drug and I explained what it is for (not part of A level German syllabus). They had a look on their system and said they could issue me a prescription but couldn't supply the drug as they don't stock it. The nearest chemist is about 25 minutes away so I'm doubling up (TMI- sorry). outnumbered It is the most fantastic drug, you have to be under 45 & have regular periods but if you have heavy bleeding, which they count as needing to change towel more than every 2 hours, it increases clotting so you just don't have so much bleeding. You can get it on prescription or over the counter in the UK, £7.99 at my local chemist for 18 tablets. You have to take either 2 three times a day or 2 four times a day depending on how heavily you are bleeding. Without I have to go to the bathroom every 45 minutes or so if I'm moving around so it's a great improvement for me.

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 07:38:27

Eastpoint hope the rest of your holiday isn't ruined too much and you can get to an Apotheke easily enough. Well done on explaining that at the Klinik!

Bertie good luck with the house hunting! Are you trying to stay central or moving out abit?

Tabitha I really know what you mean about the logistics being overwhelming! I have been through a couple of moves that were nervous breakdown material and I'd say, taking an ostrich approach about the whole thing is quite a good tactic! It'll all fall in to place in the end!

Waiting for dh's formal job offer to come today.

He's so fed up - someone has written a letter to the editor of a journal where he has published. The editor has asked dh to write an answer to this letter so both can be published together (which is fair) but his boss won't let him send his answer in for some reason. Seeing as they are co-authors (even though the boss didn't really contribute to the paper) the editor can't accept dh's answer without the other authors consent. Complicated I know but he's constantly being held back and he's a hyperactive workaholic type so it's like trying to tie a wild animal down!

LinzerTorte Tue 09-Apr-13 08:03:55

Eastpoint Oh no, what a nightmare, will you be able to get to the chemist's? Sounds like the last thing you need on a skiing holiday.

admylin Hope the job offer is a good one. It sounds like your DH is in quite a strong negotiating position at any rate. Is it normal for university contracts to be so short?

Tabitha Hello! I studied German but found I've picked up far more useful everyday, conversational language through actually living in the country than I ever did at school and university (it helped to have the basics in place, of course). I have friends who learned German here; a couple speak excellent German (but have been here for longer than I have, so over a decade - I'm not sure how long it took them to get to that level) and a few who can get by, but they do most of their socialising in English, work in an English-speaking environment, etc. so I don't think they see their lack of German as a huge problem. Most people our age speak good English and are more than happy to practise it, at least while your German gets up to conversational level. I'm sure there are plenty of expats in the Cologne area too; I've found that, no matter how well integrated you are in the local community, other expats - and being able to speak your native language to other adults - can be a lifeline at times.

Welcome back, Bertie.

outnumbered If you're selfish, then I am too. wink I've always considered anything before 6 am too early, but thankfully they all grew out of the 5am-is-a-perfectly-acceptable-time-to-start-the-day phase without me having to do much about it - I've heard good things about gro-clocks, though. They're all still fairly early risers but as I'm more of a morning person myself, I'm happy with it that way round and with them going to bed fairly early (as I do). What time they actually go to bed doesn't seem to make much difference to their wake-up time; we were at the neighbours' until 10 pm on Saturday, which was a big mistake as DD2, in particular, was in a foul mood the following day after getting up at 7 am.

MrTumbles I'm sure it would annoy me immensely too if I was in your position and read about early wake-ups being described as a sleep problem - it's all relative, isn't it?

Was supposed to be meeting a friend for coffee this morning, but she cancelled so I've been food shopping instead; I stocked up on fishfingers as the DC will have two friends here for lunch and I thought it would make a change from pizza or plain pasta!

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 08:24:26

Linzer I have no idea about university contracts as up to know dh has always been employed by hospitals or a pharmaceutical company.

I meant to ask you, have you found a good way for your dd1 to learn English spellings? Usually they get vocab to learn and have a test once a week but dd is really having trouble with English spellings - she obviously doesn't have to learn the vocab meanings as she can translate automatically, it's just teh spellings. She can manage French for some reason and has improved in her German thanks to the dyslexia coaching but English is a big problem at the moment.

LinzerTorte Tue 09-Apr-13 08:35:57

admylin Sorry, I'd forgotten that your DH hadn't been employed by a university before.

DD1 has exactly the same problem as your DD with English - no problem with meanings or grammar atm, but she couldn't spell for toffee when she went up to secondary school. I've been trying to practise spelling with her every day and she's really improved now. I get her to write down vocab from her text or exercise book and any word that she gets wrong goes onto a list (as does any word that I've noticed she's spelt wrong in class). She has to spell a word correctly five times in succession before it's removed from the list. It was an idea I got from her dyslexia tutor, who used to use one of those boxes for index cards with five or six sections and the card would move back a section every time DD1 spelt the word correctly. The cards kept ending up in the wrong sections, however, so I found it easier just to make a list in the end.

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 08:47:34

Dd's dyslexia teacher siad one of the best ways for her to learn spellings is to learn spelling rules but I'm not sure that would be the same in English as there are so many exceptions to the rules! I'll suggest short lists to start with maybe.

LinzerTorte Tue 09-Apr-13 09:08:19

No, I can't see that really working for English as there are probably more exceptions than rules! I can't even think of any English spelling rules off the top of my head, apart from "i before e...".

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 10:01:36

Linzer I found quite a few spelling rules but as you say, there were so many exceptions that it started to seem silly! These first few are short and good so I have put them on cards for dd:

No English word ends in ’v’ except spiv. Use ve instead
No English word ends in ’j’. Use ge or dge instead.
No English word ends in ‘i’. Use y instead. Exceptions: macaroni, spaghetti, vermicelli (Italian) and taxi (short for taxicab)
And some exceptions to the i before e except after c rule: either, foreign, height, leisure, protein, weird

LinzerTorte Tue 09-Apr-13 10:37:44

I haven't heard of any of those rules admylin but the cards sound like a good idea. I know there are quite a few exceptions to the i before e rule, which is possibly more confusing than anything. I've often seen wierd instead of weird, although I'm sure most people weren't thinking about the rule when they misspelt it (was just wondering whether to write misspelt or misspelled!).

I'll also be making sure that DD1 remembers that it's double c and double m in accommodation, as it's a word that seems to be spelt incorrectly more often than not! And that she gets the spelling of separate right, another word that often makes me itch to get my red pen out. grin

<proofreads post carefully>

hupa Tue 09-Apr-13 11:05:43

admylin I hope the job offer is good.
English spelling is so difficult. You could try googling synthetic phonics, as that is the preferred approach to reading and spelling at the moment in the UK. This page has a download at the bottom which gives a whole list of rules that I didn´t know existed.

tabitha I didn´t speak German when i first moved here. I didn´t have children at the time, so I spent the first year going to classes and was pretty fluent within a year. My Sil lives in Köln and we always enjoy going to visit - lots to do and the shopping is much better than where we live.

bertie It sounds like you´re finding your feet. I hope the flat hunting goes well.

Linzer My dc sound like yours in that regardless of how late they go to bed, they wake up at the usual time. In England it was really annoying because of the time difference they were awake at 6 o´clock everyday. Luckily we were staying with a friend, so they just crept downstairs and watched tv until we surfaced.

outnumbered any more news on the puppy? I like the idea of having a dog, but don´t fancy all those winter walks in the freezing cold or pouring rain.

We had a lovely time in England, despite it being really cold. I didn´t buy too much clothes wise, but we did a big supermarket shop before we came back. We´ve still got our old fridge/freezer in the garage and so I´ve stocked it up with hot cross buns, crumpets and malt loaf.

Hello to everyone I´ve missed.

hupa Tue 09-Apr-13 11:10:10

Nutella I forgot to say, yesterday there was a report on the radio that 5.5 tonnes of Nutella had been stolen from a lorry and it made me think of you. The radio presenters were joking and said that if anyone is spotted with chocolate around their mouth and gaining weight rapidly they should be reported to the police.

itsMYNutella Tue 09-Apr-13 12:26:01

admylin those rules sound good without being too complex. It is frustrating that often rules for English have so many exceptions it barely seems worthwhile to learn the rule!
I often learnt to spell words by splitting them up and having a rhyme in my head to help me spell (I think sort of singing a spelling is often helpful- you remember the tune and therefore the spelling).

Linzer you made me want fish fingers for lunch - sadly I didn't find any in the freezer hmm

Hupa good to hear you had a nice time in the UK very envy that you have a freezer full of goodies. I luuurve malt loaf - possibly more than Nutella wink I haven't been robbing any lorries <wipes face of incriminating smudges>

DS is a sleepy boy today! He slept until 10am (after last feed around 6:30) then he wanted another nap just after 11am, although it took a while for him to settle he slept about an hour and woke to demand milk... He seems to be getting tired again, he's only been awake an hour...hmm

Ploom Tue 09-Apr-13 13:50:11

Hello all!! Sorry have completely lost track of the thread after it fell off my active convos - had a week before the Easter holidays of a house full of flu then 2 weeks of Easter holidays - didnt leave much time for MNetting.

outnumbered - aw sorry the house wasnt right for you all - it obviously wasnt meant to be - in Scotland people say "whats for you, will not go by you". I agree how much trickier it is with 3 dc when it comes to space but I mostly notice it when we try to book a holiday. Get so frustrated looking at hotels that are always for 2 adults and 2 dc. We always end up in an apartment because of it.

admylin - will you have to wait till dh gets home from work to find out what the contract says? His current job and boss sound like such a nightmare that leaving would seem to me to be the sensible thing to do if the conditions are good.

mrtumbles - my heart goes out to you everytime I read about your sleep problems. Have you contemplated seeking help about his sleeping? I'm not sure who I think can help but the kinderarzt seems like a good first port of call. Your trip to playmobil land sounded stressful - definitely like too many cooks! We went last year with another family and I'm sure the husband and wife had had a fight in the car on the way there because the dh was in a right mood the whole day. I'd driven over 90 mins to get there and paid 40€ to get in (plus food) and he totally ruined the day. I swore I'd never go there again with anyone else apart from dh.

tabitha - welcome to the thread. I've been here 4 years and came in very similar circumstances to you - I'd never studied German apart from a year when I was 13 (!!) and its my dh who's the native speaker. He also came over 2 months before us and spent that time sorting out a house and the school/kiga places which was a great help. I agree with the others that just putting yourself out there and trying to chat with other parents is a great way to rapidly improve your German. I also took language classes up to B2 level but got stuck there as the next level was too difficult for me. It was aslo tricky to juggle 3 dc and the classes. My German is good but I'm not as fluent as I'd like to be partly since we speak English at home. I think if we had switched to german between dh and I then I'd have improved much quicker. I also wonder if I'll ever truly understand the cases or whether I'll always be unsure.

Waves to everyone else I've missed.

So randomly dh messaged me yesterday to ask if I could go to a video conference at the hospital this morning - they are being beyond vague as to when I will start the job, how many hours it'll be etc but I've got a contract so it could start anytime. Went to the hospital at 8.30 this morning, the video conference then didnt go ahead (for some reason that I didnt quite understand!) and I then just met a friend for a cuppa instead. I am a bit of a control freak and like to have a definite plan but they cant give me one which is driving me mad. Ah well I should just enjoy the rest now all the dc are back at school.

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 13:52:57

Nutella I used to learn spellings like that too smile and also remember doing my French vocab at 10pm at night in bed the night before a test. My dc are so much better behaved than I was! Trouble is all the techniques I used don't always work for dd because of her dyslexia.

Sounds like your ds is just exhausted with all that growing he must be doing now!

hupa thanks for that website, I'll have a read through later when I've got more time.
Good to hear you managed to bring back plenty of goodies! Did you kit the dc out with clothes?

Linzer did they all eat their fish fingers? Or will it be back to plain pasta next time?!

I have to go to the post office to collect a parcel. I always take parcels for the neighbours but the one time i'm out, so is everyone else and my parcel gets taken to the post office. Typical!

admylin Tue 09-Apr-13 14:00:37

ploom how I wish I had a dh who would go ahead and sort out a house and the school like yours did!

I am also a bit of a control freak and like to have a definite plan so I get why you're fed up at the researchers not giving you your set times and sticking to them.

I have a feeling this new job is going to be similar. So far today dh has phoned the new boss and chatted to her and got an invite to a meeting on the 25th but still no contract. I think he's just so fed up of here that he'll take anything which is not good for my control freakedness! I don't agree with him that these little friendly chats on the phone count as facts for later and I need that job offer on paper.

LinzerTorte Tue 09-Apr-13 14:22:27

Ploom Nice to see you again; I'd been wondering where you'd got to! Hope you get your hours etc. sorted out soon; I'm a control freak too and like to know exactly what I'm doing.

admylin Not only did they eat them all, I had to cook another six! I knew they'd like them, although it is a bit more fiddly/time-consuming to cook fishfingers, rice and veg than plain pasta (and heat up a sauce of which about a quarter gets eaten).

Nutella Shame you're not a bit closer - I finished off two packets of fishfingers today, but still have two to spare!

hupa Glad you had a good trip back. Very envious of the malt loaf - we can get hot cross buns and crumpets here, but I haven't had malt loaf for ages. I should probably make my own...

Just had a message from a friend that puts all my worries into perspective; it looks like she has breast cancer. sad She's having an op later on this week, so I'm not sure whether it will be confirmed then.

BertieBotts Tue 09-Apr-13 16:13:46

We're probably looking at moving a little out of town as the houses/apartments are cheaper. Looking at moving about 20 minutes out by tram or S-bahn. Although I love being in the centre! The park by the palace is so lovely and has everything you could ever want or need.

The English speaking community here seem really supportive. The group I've found are women only and a lot of them have children - it feels almost like a mini-mumsnet! We've already discussed childbirth and pelvic floor exercises. I keep looking suspiciously at them for signs of mumsnet-ness grin They are mostly American though so perhaps less likely to have heard of it.

Linzer Sorry to hear about your friend sad

LentilAsAnything Wed 10-Apr-13 01:41:51

Welcome back, Bertie, and welcome anew, Tabitha.
Tabitha, I think with your level of German, you will be fine, and with a decent basis, it should be easier to pick up more and more just by being here. Good luck, and hope the move goes smoothly.

Hello again, Ploom!

admylin, your husband's workplace/colleagues are atrocious. Sadly, it is far from uncommon. Hope the new job gets sorted soon, and they are more professional.

Tumbles, so sorry re your youngest's sleeping. How exhausting for you, and him. I hope he just grows out of it!

Nuts, glad your little one at least is letting you rest a bit.

hupa, glad you had a nice time in the UK. Mm, crumpets!

outnumbered, sorry the house wasn't right for you. Hope you find something soon.

platanos, so sorry to hear about your DD bed wetting. Poor little thing, I hope she is ok and the phase passes soon.

Linzer, sorry to hear about your friend. It certainly does put things in perspective. I hope she is healed and well again soon.

Hello to anyone I have missed.

We are feeling good about the move to Scotland. Lots to sort out, getting our stuff over (feels my decluttering bug beckoning), getting ourselves over, packing up our life here. Told DS's gym instructor today that we were leaving and we'd be cancelling the direct debit, and he said they changed the rules last month and unless you told them by the end of March, you are signed up til June 2014!!! Huh? What toddler class makes you sign up for over a year away? Anyway, he reckons I should be able to get out of this weird contract as we are leaving the country. I should hope so! Well, we won't have a bank account here, so they can whistle! Am sure we didn't sign up for this.
Two more of DH's colleagues handed in their notice today! Lots of people feeling the place isn't being run well. Better not say more as I am identifiable on here, but definitely feels like the right move for DH professionally to jack things in here.

admylin Wed 10-Apr-13 10:25:52

Lentil that's one of the things that bugs me ALOT in Germany, you have to be so organised or you find yourself bound to another year or even 2 of a contract. If you're lucky you can get out of things with a month or 3 notice. Hope they let you off but as you say, if you don't even have an account here there isn't much they can do!
Are you getting a van to take all your stuff back or are you down to a car load only?

Bertie great that you've found plenty of other families in the area. I am also always torn between living really in the centre or further out on the quiet side of town! I suppose you get more space for your money on the outskirts but have to pay more for transport. We're right on the very edge of Hannover now but it's quite a small city so we can be in the centre within 20 minutes but it can be abit too quiet out here but no problem or worry for me where the dc are concerned!

Phew just hd the MDK here to see if we are entitled to Pflegegeld for ds2 as well as ds1. If it is ruled that we are, then we will be paid the Pflegegeld from when we first sent in the forms... Which was in November!!! And as they took so long they also, irrelevant of the actual out o e, have to pay us a fine of €70/week, which should now make just over €1000 by itself! Here's me dreaming what to do with the money should we be awarded Pflegegeld..

linzer very sad and frightening about your friend. I hope they caught it in time and that she makes a full recovery, but it will be a long and hard road ahead of her and her close ones.

lentils don't worry about that contract with the gym. It is common to have to give notice 3 mo ths in advance - and unless you tell them in writing that you no longer wish to attend, the contract will just keep going. I think that's just the way German contract law is. but if you are no longer able to use the service (sickness, move far away etc) you can get out of it. You just need to show them proof of it. We had to do the same 2 years ago.

hupa the puppy is coming! Well. That is if our landlord finally gives us written permission. He has no legal grounds to refuse,but he insists to talk to his lawyer first - which won't be happening until next week. Any good lawyer will tell him we are entitled to permission and, should be take him to court over it, he would lose. Of course we wouldn't sue, but he does t know that. It's just annoying as I have to make preparations, but am trying not to be too excited just in case it doesn't wok out.

I spoke to the breeder again and she said that she believes that a quiet male would be better for our boisterous boys than a girl. A boy it is then....I think anything pink is just not meant to be in our house grin

Ploom Re the house, I spoke to the owners again I think they may be willing to go down on the price a little. And me and dh decided that we'd be wiling to accept a little less space downstairs, as long as everyone has their own good-sized bedroom. And we'd be creating a bedroom for ourselves downstairs. We'll probably meet up on the weekend and discuss price etc. this whole dog- issue has just shown us a major reason why we don't want to rent anymore. We need to be able to make decisions and choices which are right and important for us and the boys, without having to go begging the landlord, waiting weeks for decisions etc.

admylin it sounds like such a difficult decision. And I am also a complete control freak, cannot stand being in limbo. I always need to know one way or the other. I hope the new employers give your dhall necessary info in writing ASAP so that you can finally decide!

mrtumble i was also thinking what ploom said about your ds2's sleeping. I had an email of a good friend the other day. Her youngest ds ( was 2 in Feb) hasn't slept for more than a couple of hours in one stretch, basically since he was born. Doctors have finally started to take he seriously now and the hospital will monitor him in his sleep to see if there is a reason why he keeps waking up ( maybe sleep apnea)
I must be sooo exhausting for you, and it makes me thing how lucky I am really when it comes to our boys' sleeping. Yes, they are early risers, but at least they sleep until then.

Got lots on my mind at the mo, lots to sort out wrt ds1&2 which is why I have been sleeping well myself. That should all calm down in 2 weeks though, fingers crossed.

Sorry for mammoth post, and hello to everyone else

admylin Wed 10-Apr-13 11:29:54

outnumbered hope the pflegegeld gets sorted out for you! Great about the puppy and the house! Have a look at some of the tiny houses and interiors like these, they're the absloute extreme of living in small houses/spaces and it might make the house seem alot bigger!

I was also thinking it'd be nice for dd to have a dog or cat but don't want the hassle of begging the old witch of a landlady. Where did you find out for sure that you'd win if you had to go to court about it?

admylin do you know the exact wording in your contract wrt pets?

admylin Wed 10-Apr-13 11:48:10

It's the standard Mietvertrag - Für jede Tierhaltung insbesondere von Hunden und Katzen ausgenommen Kleintiere...bedarf es der vorherigen ausdrücklichen Erlaubnis des Vermieters...makes me mad just reading it!

Not entirely sure about that clause. We have a different one 'absolute kleine tierhaltung, auch keine Kleintiere' !!! And there was a recent court ruling saying they are invalid as unfair for the tenant.

I got advice through some mietrecht forum online. In general I think the law is now very in favour of tenants wrt dogs and cats. The landlord has to take everyone's interest into account. Just them not liking dogs etc is not enough.

Do any of your neighbours have dogs or cats?

LentilAsAnything Wed 10-Apr-13 11:59:41

outnumbered, hope you get the extra money.

Thanks, and admylin, for assuring me it should be easy to get out of the gym contract! I think it is a popular class, I am sure they have a steady flow of children joining.

DH's dad is driving a van over from Fife to here, then they'll drive back. DS and I will have to fly, as the carseat won't go in the van, nor will three adults plus toddler fit anyway.

admylin Wed 10-Apr-13 12:21:24

outnumbered I agree that it's a silly rule and hope your landlord changes it. I honestly think as long as they get their house/flat back in the same standard as it was when handed over to the tenants they can't say much about what you do when you live there.

Are you in a Mieterverein of any sort? I was thinking of joining one but not sure which one.

Lentil that sounds like you're well organised! It's a long drive up to Scotland so maybe you got the best deal of flying over!

LentilAsAnything Wed 10-Apr-13 12:37:54

DH has done all the organising, he's done well, there's so much to wade through, working out how to do it economically. Yeah, flying will be quick for DS and me, though I wouldn't have minded a road trip!

TabithaGraves Wed 10-Apr-13 14:38:57

Thanks for all of the welcomes and all of the reassurance as well!

outnumbered I hope everything works out so that the puppy can come home. Our dog came to us as a baby one year before we had our girls, and he has been so good with the kids and such a great companion to go for runs with, keep me company when DH is out of town or works late, etc. I am almost embarrassed to say that a good portion of my stress about moving logistics comes from wanting to make sure that everything is in order for him to fly over with us and have a rental house ready that will be OK with us having him. So far everything looks pretty good -- the process for bringing a dog over from the States to Germany looks relatively straightforward if you follow all of the rules (I believe it is MUCH harder to bring a dog over to the UK for example). What kind of puppy would you be getting?

lentils good luck on your move!

Bertie, we are also looking at renting a house in a first ring suburb -- with the dog and kids we will need a bit more space as well as green space. But as I will need to get into town rather quickly each day to take the train, I don't want to live much further than that. In re: Americans -- I don't think mumsnet is very well known over here. I heard about it from an English friend from my last European secondment.

Hello tabitha smile it's a flatcoated retriever we are getting. He is 6.5 weeks old today!

Did you say you are moving to Cologne? My brother and his family live there, I think near Rhodenkirchen? They love that part of town but I do think its not the cheapest neighborhood. Must be ok for getting into the centre reasonably quickly though, as he works at the university hospital.

Oh just realised I haven't replied on here in a while.

Ploom and Outnumbered I have seen 2 different paediatricians about DS2's sleep. The first (our regular one) took a history, did a physical examination, said he has no obvious problem causing the very fragmented sleep (checked ears, adenoids, listened to heart and lungs), said that his development is ahead of average and seems unaffected by his poor sleep, and offered to proscribe a sedative - which I turned down immediately. After I bit more reading I realise that if the sedative was actually melatonin it might not have been such a terrible thing, but sedating a not quite 2 year old who is not suffering himself from the lack of sleep just seemed utterly the wrong thing to do to me. Then he decided he couldn't help me but referred me to his wife, who is also a paediatrician but focussing mainly on babies and on homoeopathy.

The second paediatrician did the same physical assessment and also talked to him a lot more - she talked to him in English too, and she also said he is not suffering from the lack of sleep and is ahead of average in terms of all 'round development, and this meant in her opinion there isn't a problem. She said there is nothing "wrong", it is simply that he is a child with a greater level of attachment and higher level of needs than average, and it is within the normal range though not typical. Then she gave me some advice but I am not sure how "medical" it was, and how much it was her opinion - about changing associations etc (moving him to sleep in a different room, changing the order of the bedtime routine simply to signal a change rather than because one way is better than another, etc. She also proscribed chamomelia (?) globulii - which I tried as directed for a week and which had no effect at all, and gave me home spun advice on getting my older kids to help me more in the day time and take more responsibility for themselves, going out once a week and having his father do bedtime (I already work twice a week in the eves anyway so no free pass for a night out there) and not listening to anyone who tried to tell me what my child "should" be doing sleep wise... Which I didn't really need a paediatrician for tbh smile

Sorry that's turned epic already! Anyway I have been to the Kinderartz, I guess next resort would be melatonin but I would rather he just grows out of it!

outnumbered hope your landlord stops being silly so you can get your dog. Admylin maybe you can get a dog or cat in Berlin? I think our landlord is OK about pets - he owns the other side of our doublehouse too and they have a dog, and we have rabbits, which he knows about.

Good luck with the moves Tabatha and Lentil

Waves at everyone else, DS2 is jumping on me and DD will be home in a second so better stop typing!

BertieBotts Thu 11-Apr-13 11:41:16

I can't remember if I asked this before but is anyone else near Karlsruhe? Was there ever a meet up scheduled? no rush of course but it seems like a nice idea at some point in the future. smile

admylin Thu 11-Apr-13 11:49:39

I'm not near you Bertie I'm in Hanover (for the moment)!

tumbles let's hope your ds2 grows out of it or more like grows into sleeping better or atleast when he gets abit older and you can reason with him, he can busy himself quietly in bed/his room if he doesn't want to/can't go to sleep!

Dh got in trouble at work yesterday and was called to the office.
He hasn't told them he's got another offer yet but they were mad because he sent a manuscript off without getting the go ahead first (he was sick of waiting for them to decide) and he had to call it back and apologise. He told them to sack him if it's so bad but they said no, they need him.

LentilAsAnything Sat 13-Apr-13 14:33:59

The sooner he is out of there, the better, admylin. What rotters they sound.

admylin any news about the position in Berlin? I agree, it sounds like your dh really needs to leave his current job ASAP, no matter hat they may offer him should he stay. But incompletely understand that you need to am sure that working conditions will really be better in the new job. Good luck!!

It's been an exhausting but also positive weekend. The landlord finally sent us a - very friendly!- email saying we a keep a dog here. Hooray grin

And last night we had a phone call from the house we put an offer in for. Looks like they will accept it and are keen t move fast. He's already been to see a solicitor. And they have also already found somewhere suitable fir themselves and will move forward with that too. We are meeting Wednesday night o discuss details.

And this morning I spoke to our krankenkasse, and I have been awarded Pflegegeld for ds2 as well. Unbelievably really that his pre school still maintains that he is a healthy and normally developed 4-year-old angry

Now I am nervous about my appt with ds2 in Frankfurt tomorrow. We are the autismusambulanz at the uniklinik there for a second diagnosis.

This arvo I have taking three dcs to the dentist to look forward to. On my own...

Hope everyone has lots of sunshine this week smile we have 23 degrees.

AntiqueMuppet Mon 15-Apr-13 13:09:26

Hello! Sorry I've been awol for a while, just a quick post to say hello while DS naps - I'll try and catch up with everyone later.
Hope everyone is enjoying the weather; I've just come in from the garden as I was starting to fry in the sun.
Welcome to Bertie and Tabitha and good luck with the upcoming moves. I'm in Wiesbaden.
Good news on the house and the Pflegegeld, outnumbered, and of course the dog too.
I'm on my phone so can't scroll back and have of course completely forgotten what everyone else has written.
<waves>

admylin Mon 15-Apr-13 14:35:07

Antique lovely weather here too - now you can atleast start to make the most of having a garden of your own! Have you started planning what you're going to plant?

outnumbered congratulations on all the positive things like letters from landlord and pflegegeld, house etc! How was the dentist visit? I've just got back from the orthodontist with ds. A quick one again, in and out in 2 minutes.

lentil how's the packing going? Will you be taking more back than you came with?

Dh is waiting to speak to the Berlin people on the 26th. They're trying to offer him all sorts here and he found out that the big boss treats alot of people badly on his staff and then always calls and apologises. He must have some sort of personality disorder where he can't control himself and shouts at people but later regrets it, he also has the classic 'god in white' syndrome.

LentilAsAnything Mon 15-Apr-13 17:23:42

Wow, out at all your positive progress! smile

Hi, Muppet!

admylin, I hope things work out whether you all stay or go.

We do have more than we came with, as we bought a mattress here (not a normal one, a hippy latex nontoxic one, you know me! smile), it's huge, 200cmx200cm. Also got two sofas that I'd like to take back. Happy to leave the dining table and wardrobes and spare bed. Clothes-wise, I have less, and anything worn out we have not been replacing. DS has quite a few more books. Oh dear. I am still aiming to be more minimal, but it is a journey. smile

Boiling not here, woo hoo. Took DS to the park in a very light linen playsuit, legs out, arms bare, got lots of looks from the locals with their children all dressed in various layers with warm hats on. smile

AntiqueMuppet Mon 15-Apr-13 21:15:50

Lentils It was something like 24'c here this afternoon and I was the only person in our area without my big thick winter coat. I got a few pointed stares but I was hot enough in just a vest and jeans, I would have died in a big thick padded jacket!

admylin Your DH really needs to get out of there, it just sounds worse and worse every time you mention his current place of work. Fingers crossed Berlin make him an offer he can't refuse and one that is worth the hassle of uprooting you and your DC.
I've planted some radishes and am planning my next green-fingered project. I thought I might go and get some nice flowers at the weekend to plant and make a start on my herb/vegetable patch.

outnumbered How did it go at the dentist today? Good luck for your appointment tomorrow. I was going to suggest meeting for a coffee in Frankfurt but tomorrow is turning into a busy one for us.

Linzer Sorry to hear about your friend. News like that does make you think about things differently. Did you hear how her op went?

Bertie One of my friends used some MN terminology in an email recently and it's had me wondering if she's spotted me on here (I think if you know me in RL I'm probably really easily identifiable.)

Ploom Any update on the job? Are the hospital still faffing around? I hope they sort things soon - I'd hate to be all up in the air like that.

hupa Glad to hear you had a nice time in the UK!

This is quite a mammoth post already so I'll just say hello to anyone I've missed and then I shall pack myself off to bed. Night night!

LentilAsAnything Mon 15-Apr-13 23:07:31

Oops, I am sure you all knew I meant boiling hot not boiling not! smile

hupa Tue 16-Apr-13 14:21:02

I´ve been making the most of the weather and been weeding the garden. It´s so lovely not having to wrap up in warm clothes. I´ve even braved a skirt while I´ve been in the garden, but have put trousers on to go further afield as I fear the glare from my white legs might blind someone.

outnumbered That´s brilliant news about the house and dog. I hope the dentist visit was just as successful.

admylin Is your dh leaning more towards staying or going? I suppose he needs to know exactly what the deal is in Berlin. His boss here has really chosen the wrong time to be so petty.

Lentil How long have you got before you move? Will your dh get a moving package with the new job or have you got to organise the move yourselves?

Muppet Great to see you around again. I´m also thinking of buying flowers at the weekend. I can´t wait to get a bit of colour into the garden. I´m just worried we´re being lulled into a false sense of security and in a week we´ll be deling with snow again.

Hope everyone else is making the most of the weather and having a great time.

hupa Tue 16-Apr-13 14:24:34

Bertie Someone on the thread did mention setting up a map somewhere online where we could pin where we are living. Unfortunately, I can´t remember who it was or exactly how it would work, but maybe one of the others can remember.

itsMYNutella Tue 16-Apr-13 15:20:50

Sorry, I haven't welcomed the newbies, nice to have you here bertie and tabitha smile

outnumbered so glad you have had so much good news recently! Can't wait to see puppy pictures!

antique I got sunburn yesterday sad my poor pale skin! Went for a walk around the local lake with some other mummies and then sat and enjoyed the sun - I actually sat under an umbrella I had with me because it was too much sun for me, I was too late though.

lentils on the walk yesterday there were obviously really mixed opinions about what babies can wear- DS was probably (like yours) one of those wearing the least but others still have their babies in ski suits shock!

asmylin any news yet about your DH?

Actually I need to find him a nice cotton summer hat... The only problem is he does have a big head so will have to try some on him.

I had my first student today, since DS arrived, smile. I've been teaching him for nearly 2 years and his mum is very keen that the lessons continue.
I said I couldn't guarantee that DS would sleep so as long as that was ok for them I was happy to start again. DS was a good boy and slept the first half then was awake and did a lot of farts and a poo (but don't think the student noticed) and then he was fairly quiet again. All in all - success!

admylin Tue 16-Apr-13 15:58:05

Nutella great that you have got your student back and ds behaved for you! What grade is your student in? I wish I could get into teaching but I just can't explain English! I've tried a couple of times with ds's friends when they've been round here revising for English tests.

Hupa have you got a big garden? Wish we had one, not for me (I can't even manage to grow dandelions) but dd would take charge of it!

Antique how's ds's cough?

I have tested the dc on the idea of going back to Berlin and their reaction was very positive so that's one less worry atleast. Dh is negotiating but they're making it very hard on him here and begging (even crying) for him to stay, saying you can do what you like here at work, we'll promote you, we can't cope without you - hmm, funny all of a sudden showing a different face.

He's not feeling very good about that side of things now and feels bad, even the technical assistant to the boss is asking dh why he's making such a fuss and upsetting the boss. This assistant goes out to the pub with dh and colleagues and has been for dinner here too so he knows the situation but he can't stand to the boss upset.

Hello smile Can't keep up again and am all in a muddle as I just drove to work to be greeted at the door by a RealSchule teacher and welcomed to parents eve - I went to teach a VHS class. I am 99.99% VHS notified me of a parents eve next week not this, but can't find the letter! One of my students rang me a minute ago to say they got in to the school and what should they do! Argh big mess! At least she phoned me and is now telling the others to go home, and I will have to find out what is going on tomorrow! There's been a mix up somewhere, I really hope it was the office not me!

Anyway... Yay for all the good news outnumbered smile What are you going to call your puppy?

DS2 was wearing shorts yesterday after he got 2 pairs of trousers filthy and the remaining choice of clean clothes was between thick padded winter trousers or shorts smile big kids went on a mass cycle ride with 5 other kids from the street, all wearing T shirts and sun glasses on Sunday - and the other 5 were all German, as were the parents who accompanied them shock I have seen a funny mix of people out though, from short sleeved T shirts to big coats, and most of the kids being dropped at KiGa this morning were in winter hats even though KiGa have changed to their summer hat notice grin (KiGa always have a sign up about hats, children must always wear hats, otherwise their heads fall off, but in summer they must wear sun hats of course, so they change signs - and the winter one has a snowman wearing a hat, and the summer one a sunshine wearing a hat... grin )

Who was talking about a friend using MN terminology in an email? Just wanted to mention that "MN terminology" is actually not generally MN specific, most of it is general internet parenting forum stuff - definitely things like DH, MIL, SIL etc. are used on other forums (I used to use Another Parenting Website smile Not the Huns one, but one that I think has been largely abandoned since it had a very unpopular re-vamp about 3 years ago, and certainly a lot of the same abbreviations were used there as here - I'd never visited MN then and when I did first I found it too "big" - the other forum was very differently arranged so it was possible to feel you "knew" everyone in your little section - I guess like this thread, but of course this is well tucked away! Mind you if your friend wrote LTB for Leave The Bastard she probably does MN grin

admylin I agree with the others your DH needs to get out if the Berlin offer comes through, unless his current employer gives him a promotion and pay rise, permanaent contract with associated bonus rights, and a set of very specific guarantees about giving him credit for his own work and research proposals, preferably carved into marble tablets and signed in blood in front of multiple witnesses smile

Lentils latex sounds the opposite of hippy to me shock

Better go out to the car in the rain (thunder storm in fact) and search for the letter about the parents eve, its bugging me...

LentilAsAnything Tue 16-Apr-13 22:09:08

Tumbles, latex doesn't sound organic and healthy, does it, but apparently it is better than mainstream mattresses. Oh well, I was sold! smile

Gosh, admylin, your DH has a lot to deal with. I think I'd go for a fresh start, none of this crying boss and emotional manipulating nonsense.
I am glad your children are happy enough to go to Berlin.

hupa, yes and no! Well, DH doesn't actually have a new job, we are taking the plunge and he is going to work for himself, so the 'new company', i.e. him, IS organising the move! smile
We leave at the end of May.

AntiqueMuppet Wed 17-Apr-13 12:43:54

Nutella Ouch! Hope the sunburn isn't too painful.

admylin The doctor declared DS perfectly healthy, she thought maybe he just liked the noise and the reaction it gets and he hasn't really wheezed since his appointment so who knows what was going on. Maybe just walking through the door to the surgery was some sort of magic cure. (Or the new noise just isn't as exciting anymore...)
I can't believe your DH's employers have resorted to emotional blackmail. That's low, even after everything else they have done

MrTumbles I didn't realize DH etc were common internet parenting forum words, but then I only really use MN.
Did you sort the parents evening mystery in the end?
How did your DS2 sleep last night?

hupa Isn't it so nice to be able to potter around the garden now?
I was horrified by my pasty legs too the other day so bought some of that gradual fake tan stuff. Unfortunately my legs are now bright orange so I'm having to hide them away for a little longer than if they were just plain pasty. Doh!

MIL is here for a few days and her and DS are both having an afternoon Napoli I'm having a coffee and wondering what to do with myself. I did the cleaning this morning ready for MIL's arrival and while she's here I can't hang any washing in the spare room so sitting on the couch and enjoying a coffee and a biscuit is clearly the only solution.

AntiqueMuppet Wed 17-Apr-13 12:44:46

An afternoon Napoli? An afternoon nap....

admylin Wed 17-Apr-13 17:17:25

Antique lol, I love it! How was the napoli? Sounds like Italien for nap!
It is emotional blackmail isn't it at dh's workplace?

He's in a dilema now and is going to ask the Berlin people to wait another couple of months so he can finish off all his projects and observe how they behave here. One step out of line and he's gone!

They really want him in Berlin and he's already had a long chat with the boss. He told them what's going on and they said well if you really value your mitarbeiter you don't treat them the way they have treated you and how come they haven't promoted you yet after over 4 years of working there? Also they said they'd promote him to assistant professor after 6 months at their place as they need him to teach students.

Admylin your husband is too nice (and a little naive by the sounds of it, though in the nicest possible way of wanting to believe the best about people). Tell him to get out of there!

I thought Napoli was trendy slang or something grin

Argh best get to work, not in the mood after yesterday's fiasco. Not found out what was going on no, didn'T get around to making it to VHS office hours, which are quite limited. Will go tomorrow.

LentilAsAnything Wed 17-Apr-13 18:43:28

I thought you were having an afternoon pizza, Muppet. We are having pizza tonight, hurry up and get home, DH!

admylin, your husband has the patience and loyalty of a saint! Me, I'd be off! smile

itsMYNutella Wed 17-Apr-13 21:53:24

admylin I was just checking in but want to add, before I go to bed, that your DH is being emotionally blackmailed (by the sound of it) and I totally agree with Lentils and mrT; I would be off like a shot biting the hand off of the Berlin people! If they haven't promoted your DH in 4 years here what is motivating him to stay?

Mrtumbles how is your DS2 sleeping? Anything close to a repeat of his 11 hours?

antique I managed to write "good moment" instead of good morning a week or so ago... Bloomin auto correct! But I like admylin's idea that it could be Italian for a nap grin

DS has a cold sad he is ok for the most part but very snuffly at night. Trying to be extra patient and give him lots of TLC. Tonight we have put some eucalyptus oil on a tissue under his sheet, put a towel under his mattress so his head is raised a little and dosed him with calpol - although he slept ok last night it's horrible to hear him uncomfortable. Do baby colds last about a week like normal colds? I hope so...

LinzerTorte Thu 18-Apr-13 07:46:32

Morning all,

I haven't had much time to post recently as work has been a bit manic. It's quiet so far today, but I have lots of paperwork to catch up on - my tax return, invoicing, etc.

Nutella Poor DS; hope he's better soon. From what I remember, baby colds seem to last about the same time as adult colds but babies do seem to be a bit more miserable than when they're older. Mind you, I always feel really miserable when I have a cold, whereas it doesn't seem to affect the DC half as much.

admylin It certainly sounds like your DH would be appreciated more in Berlin. Would he definitely be going to Berlin after a couple of months or is he waiting a couple of months before he makes his final decision?

MrTumbles Yes, I've seen DH etc. used on FB by people who I'm pretty sure aren't MNers; I even came across it in a book not long ago. AIBU and the like would definitely make me think of MN, though.
Hope you get the VHS confusion sorted out. Excellent news on the sleep, btw. smile

hupa There is a map, but you'd need to join FB - I don't think you're on there IIRC?

Lentil How's the decluttering going? Did you get the direct debit sorted out in the end?

outnumbered Great news about the dog and the Pflegegeld - and the house of course, but have I missed something? I thought the house you viewed didn't have enough bedrooms, or have you seen another one since then?

Antique Well, I thought a Napoli must be some kind of exotic ice cream (I was possibly thinking of neopolitan!). grin Glad to hear DS is OK, anyway.
Friend's op went well thanks and it hasn't spread to her lymph nodes, which is excellent news.

admylin Thu 18-Apr-13 08:33:06

Linzer hope you getthrough allyour paperwork. I have a pile of papers that need sorting before the end of the week too. And again, bils, bills and more bills!

Nutella poor ds. Hope he feels better soon. I also remember that the dc suffered alot with colds and coughs especially when they couldn't breath through their nose properly. It's worth getting baby nose drops if your ds is having trouble there.

lentil what was on your pizza? I love making pizza, taste much better than the bought ones.

tumbles congratulations on the last few nights of sleep for ds2. You'll be feeling like a new woman in no time.

Yes, you're all right - dh is too nice! Today he's had the most sickeningly sweet e-mail from the boss asking to meet whenever he has time today to discuss some points about work and giving him all sorts of options when he usually gets called to the office when they want and they tell him what's going on with no options! It won't last and he knows it. She even used loads of exclamation marks which she never bothers with and signed off with grüsse which she also never bothered with before.

hupa Thu 18-Apr-13 09:40:09

Nutella I hope your ds is feeling better soon. If his nose is blocked there is this to suck the snot out of his nose. I´ve never used one, so don´t know how good they work. Alternatively, I´ve read on mumsnet you could try sucking the snot out yourself. Personally, I think I would be sick if I tried that.

admylin Dh´s boss must be stupid if she doesn´t think your dh can see through her attempts to sweet talk him.
Our garden isn´t too big, but enough space for a trampoline and lots of weeds. We´ve got loads of Wühlmaüse (whatever they are in English) at the moment and they enjoy eating the roofts of anything we plant, but not weeds unfortunately. We´ve bought some things that make a high pitched tone to get rid of them, so we´ll have to see if they work.

Linzer Thanks for the info about the map. I´m not on facebook, I´m a bit scared of social networking sites. Mind you I think I know where most people live and unfortunately because I live in the middle of nowhere, there´s noone nearby.

Lentil How´s the packing going? It´s brave of your dh to start up on his own and move countries at the same time.

muppet I love Napoli!

The exciting news here is that our local Edeka is getting new tills and shock, horror there will even be a self service till. I have to say the people who were in there today were eyeing it very suspiciously. Hopefully I´ll be the only one brave enough to use it and will be in and out really quickly.

platanos Sat 20-Apr-13 08:38:14

Hello everyone and welcome to new names!

hupa good luck with the tills. I lived in the UK when they started introducing them, and people also looked rather suspicious.

admylin I must admit the post about your dh made me really angry. It is emotional blackmail and totally inappropriate. And your dh is upsetting the boss by wanting to move somewhere with better conditions? ach, come on: she would not do the same? Any more information on the conditions? How long is the contract in Berlin?

tumbles how is ds2 sleeping recently?

linzer glad to hear your friend's op went well and hope she is all clear. What a fright though.

nutella hope ds is feeling better? and glad your ds is okay antique.

lentil How is the sorting out for the move going? Are you making the most of your last weeks in F. and exploring the area?

Must go. I have been really busy at work recently. Besides, when it is warm we spend a lot of time outdoors and away from computers. Though we had to come home early on Thursday as ds was having a bad allergic reaction to the pollen outside. My family arrives next week - 4 adults and 3 children. I am looking forward to it, but also a bit apprehensive about how it will all work out... my mother and uncle are not very mobile, and children are of course. We shall see...

have a good weekend all! Enjoy the nice weather - it is meant to rain here but the sun is shining at the moment, and at least it is not cold.

admylin Sat 20-Apr-13 10:24:08

Platanos that's lovely that you're family are visiting. Are they all staying with you? How is ds's allergy today? I'm feeling my pollen allergy in my eyes today so I'll have to go and get some medication sorted. We have it in stages in this family. I'm first then ds gets it and in June sometime dh gets it.

Hupa how exciting and modern your edeka is!
I've never used one of those self service tills to be honest but then again I rarely shop at Real where they have them. Other shops don't have them near us.

Have you noticed that Rewe lets you get cash when you pay with your card? I used that alot in the UK when shopping even if it was just ten or twenty cash atleast you didn't have to make an extra stop at the bank. Dh is still back in the old days in Germany where you couldn't use your card for small amounts so he thinks he has to buy a couple of bottles of wine aswell as his packet of cigarettes in order to use his card (I'm not telling him any different if he brings goodies home).

I'm getting slightly fed up with this new job business. One day it all sounds great, the next they're convincing him it's worth it to stay here, yesterday his old Berlin boss called him to warm him against the new boss and to rather come to him. Now dh is saying he'll tell the new place to wait until September or October for him to decide and I had to point out to him that we can't move with him then as the school year starts in August this year and it's much too important a year for ds to move if he's already started here. IF we move it has to be July at the latest. Is it always so complicated with job moves?

LentilAsAnything Sat 20-Apr-13 19:16:09

Linzer, decluttering is going well, actually! I have two pairs of jeans that are both on their last legs, so will chuck those before we go. We've decided to sell the sofas if we can, DH possibly has a colleague interested, so he will view this week, hopefully, and then decide. So our only big item to take would be the mattress. Oh, and the nursing chair.
plat, yes, we are planning on making sure we see anything we want to see before we go. Though of course, it is so close to the UK we can easily pop back. I think I'd like to come back to Germany for the Xmas markets, though I'd choose somewhere new to visit, not here.
hupa, yeah, it is a brave move, though it is his home town we are going to, so easy street there, and I have faith in his abilities and drive to make a go of making his own money.

admylin, my pizzas usually have semi-dried tomatoes, a whole clove of garlic, red onion, courgette, pepper, and curly kale (I usually buy it frozen, so it's always in, and doesn't go off. I add it to most suppers. Also means it is chopped up so small it gets disguised. Not that DS is bad at eating vegetables, but kale can be a bit hard to chew/digest with little teeth.) Added avocado the other night, and last night we had it with asparagus too. And vegan cheese. Oh, and mushrooms on DH's (I don't like mushrooms). I like a stacked pizza! smile Don't usually have it twice in one week but DH has a friend visiting, and pizza was requested.
I too love making pizza, but I do love and miss Strada pizza. My bases never have that stretch. I do chuck seeds and stuff in the base, and use spelt flour, but even so, not sure this accounts for my lack of stretch. Can't do that spinny thing the pizza chefs do! Can you?

Rewe here only lets me get cashback if I spend €20+. But yes, saves a trip to the bank.
Sounds very complicated re your DH's job situation. Out of the frying pan, springs to mind! It is so hard to tell until you are actually there.

Oooh home made pizza - that's DS1's speciality smile We just use regular flour and the uncooked bases are stretchy... We use a recipe from a 'Kids love to cook' book grin Ds1 (5) makes them pretty much on his own now - he still needs a bit of help with weighing, and of course I put them in the oven... Our pizzas are rather more similar in shape to a map of Australia than a perfect circle though - gives them character and doesn't change the taste smile I imagine it could be the flour lentils though I know its a lot healthier - a neighbour of mine is obsessed with Dinkel and regular wheat being evil - to some extent I see her point, but although my family will eat Dinkel bread they complain bitterly about, and won't eat, Dinkel pasta or anything else, so I don't bother!

Plantanos good luck with the family visit - it can be really stressful, and then people assume you are being helped when family visit and expect you to be more relaxed afterwards, whereas in fact a visit of more than a couple of days can leave you needing an actual break instead! Hope it goes smoothly!

Admylin how frustrating the whole job saga must be for you! Would the Berlin employer even be prepared to wait 4 + months with no guarantee your DH will take up the job at the end of that time? I would imagine it will be better for everyone if your DH just takes the Berlin job and you get the move over with over the summer holidays. Is he worried that the new employer will turn out to be as bad as the current one once actually there? I certainly don't think he should worry about his current boss's feelings or let his colleagues emotionally blackmail him with the fact the boss will be stroppy if he goes!

Antique hope MIL's visit is still going smoothly and she and DS are having lots of long Napolis smile Is she leaving today?

DS2 has slept through til 5am 5 nights running! grin grin grin Amazing! He is still playing up a bit at bedtime, especially when he manages to sneak a nap somehow (in the car or if DH is looking after him) but its been under an hour each night so again within acceptable parameters I think smile Amazing change in such a short time, I guess he was just ready to sleep grin smile Weirdly though he has been grumpier and more prone to more and longer tantrums since he started unbroken sleep - no idea what that's about, am hoping it is something to do with adjusting!

Better feed him now, he's nagging for breakfast, it's almost 7, he's usually finished breakfast by now so I guess he's hungry!

LentilAsAnything Sun 21-Apr-13 15:48:15

I am trying to reduce our regular wheat intake, but having tried that dinkel pasta, regular pasta it is! smile Pizza I do part dinkel/spelt, part regular wheat, and part this bready flour, then add nuts and seeds! I have done plain old regular flour ones, and I still never get that stretch that enables you to spin them around in the air!
I don't know how they roll perfect circles, if they don't spin. I roll, then cut to size using a plate!

Am very pleased for you re DS2's sleeping! Hurrah!

WallyBantersYoniBox Sun 21-Apr-13 22:29:45

Evening ladies of Germany. Might I put in a small hijack across the Swiss border with a Germanic cooking question? (interestingly I see you are on the topic of food)

admylin Mon 22-Apr-13 07:43:19

Morning all!
Wally ask away!

Lentil I have the opposite problem with stretch for my pizza bases, they need lots of rolling and tossing to stay the size I want! We went to a government open day in Berlin years ago where different trades were showing their skills in one of the many government buildings and a baker was there showing the dc how to make marzipan figures and one doing bread and tossing pizza bases was one of the things we got to try!
At the moment the dc won't eat melted cheese as they can't get it out of their brace wires so we just have veggie pizzas with lots of garlic and herbs.

tumbles how are you feeling after a few solid nights of sleep? Sounds like you're entering the terrible twos stage with ds2 maybe!
You're right about dh not worrying about the present bosses and their feelings but he is worried that the new boss will start sending him to Dresden more often than she said she would (he's meant to take over a few lectures there but mainly work in Berlin on 2 projects with big funding money). He's going on the 26th to meet the group and ask her a few more questions then he'll have to decide as I need to move in July at the very latest so the dc can get into the start of the new school year there in Augsut.

admylin Mon 22-Apr-13 07:43:51

Augsut August

WallyBantersYoniBox Mon 22-Apr-13 09:54:09

Morning....!

So I bought Maultaschen for the first time, after having it in a Swabian restaurant a few weeks ago.

I had no clue how to cook it, so I googled. There were three recommendations :

Slice and fry in lard with onions - self explanatory

Simmer in Brühe - which was the one I did, and added some carrots, celery and broccoli to the broth and it was lovely.

Oven cook with eggs - this was the one that I could find no actual method or recipe for, and I wondered if anyone on the German thread knew this way of preparing?

We definitely enjoyed the broth method and will be adding these to the list of choices in family meals. Yummy.

Hope you are all well over the border!
X

admylin Mon 22-Apr-13 10:44:30

Wally I used to work in a Swabian restaurant and they used to do the egg maultaschen in the pan. Slice maultaschen, fry in the pan with onions and then pour whisked eggs over, stir abit and fry until set, sprinkle with chopped parsley!

Hello, I have no idea what Maultaschen are, I am imagining moles in pasta pockets... smile

admylin Mon 22-Apr-13 14:43:44

They're abit like ravioli but bigger and filled with meat or spinach, breadcrumbs and parsley. Typical Swabian food. They have them here up north in Edeka and Rewe sometimes too but none of mine like them.

itsMYNutella Mon 22-Apr-13 15:41:17

There is a market near us and every two weeks there is a lady with yummy fresh pasta - she also sells Maultaschen and DP has mentioned that you put them in a soup. The omlete/ frittata style option sounds good

admylin hope your DH gets all the info he needs to make a decision soon!

mrtumbles are you enjoying a bit more sleep now? Great news that DS2 is sleeping better now. What do you think made the difference?

Lentils hope the packing and sorting isn't too stressful. When I was a teenager our house was flooded and we lost all sorts of precious irreplaceable things. I'm not really a minimalist but I really don't hoard things so I am always curious to read about what you're chucking out.

Hope everyone else is well. I'm about to take DS out for a walk... Possibly to LIDL grin... Will they still have fudge?
DS has perfected the art of rolling from one side to the other and can actually creep off his playmat or round 180 but he hasn't yet rolled right over. He is also entranced by a squeaky toy when I squeak it at him. Very cute!
DS was snotty all last week with a cold and then last night (of course on a Sunday at about 23:30) he started coughing horrendously. We took him to A&E it was so bad, he has croup confused he is much better today, a bit wheezy; but a check up at the dr showed his lungs are clear and he has no fever or other problem. It was a horrible shock for us though.
Anyone else had problems with croup??

admylin Mon 22-Apr-13 16:18:16

Nutella hope the cough is better soon. When mine had it we used to sit in the kitchen with a pan of water boiling to make the room steamy and also the doctor said to always have damp cloths on the radiators with a drop or two of peppermint oil or tea tree oil on. I used Vicks. It's a good sign if there is no fever though.
Our Lidl had loads of British week stuff left on Saturday night so you might be lucky!
Off to a school meeting now about the next Klassenfahrt. We'll be getting our shopping list of all the things they need.

Dd is fed up as she went down to the cellar to get her old bike out for tomorrow and it's far too small so she won't use it. She has grown alot in the last few months. Tomorrow the whole class are biking it to the swimming pool in the next Stadtteil for school sport class and she's the only one without a bike. I said I'll pick her up behind school and drive her there and pick her up again afterwards but she's very fed up.

LentilAsAnything Mon 22-Apr-13 21:40:24

Aw, poor DD, admylin. Will she be able to get a new bike soon?
What is your stretchy pizza dough recipe?

Nut, I don't really know about croup. Hope he gets better soon.

I don't think I can call myself a minimalist yet, but I am getting there. I used to have loads of clothes. I donated about 10 suitcase fulls before we left the UK last April. I still have more to get rid of, but am trying to not be too wasteful, so have stored a few things for when current things wear out, rather than having to buy new things. I don't think this is a pure minimalist stance, but we have to be more prudent now DH is trying his own thing. Once I have pared down to a proper capsule wardrobe I will feel better about how much stuff I am carrying around. I used to have lots of lovely furniture too, but offloaded it before we came. I was also a toilettries junkie, and had shelves and shelves of lotions and potions, and various hoards of makeup. I now have a much more basic approach.
I just want to feel freer to just get on a plane with a backpack and have everything we need. The only thing that can't really travel with us without being a hassle is the mattress. DH got rid of all his books, save a few, and has all his reading material on file/Kindle. Same for music and films.
Sorry to hear about the flood. My mother lost a lot of our baby photos in a flood too. We have a few, but most were lost. It is easier these days to have everything backed up, and I do use Facebook for photos as an extra backup.
Before we came here, I chucked out loads of photo albums, just scanning in a select few for posterity. I chucked out all my soft toys that I thought I'd pass on to my child but I since decided they were just old and probably not up to todays's safety requirements anyway. And loads of nick nacks, unused gifts, souvenirs, lava lamps and UFO fibre optic lamps, fairy lights galore, etc!

WallyBantersYoniBox Mon 22-Apr-13 22:23:57

Oh thank you, makes sense now. Not sure how a Maultaschen frittata will taste but they are on offer in Marktkauf here at the moment so no doubt I'll be giving it a try. grin

Literally translates as Muzzle bag because it looks like a feed bag for animals. I think they call them slapped cheek too!

Have a great evening ladies. X

admylin Tue 23-Apr-13 07:09:36

Lenti I think my dd may be a toiletries junkie too! When you walk into her room with your eyes shut, you'd think you were ina Lush shop! Only when you open your eyes and se ethe mess you realise...! She uses the floor to hang all her clothes up.

I hope we can find a bike soon for her. Trouble is, ds's bike is also too small (by far) so it'd be abit unfair to just buy one for dd which means we have to find the money for two so it's going to have to be a special offer when one comes up.

Wally hope the Maultaschen frittata works out! Do you like Käsespatzle? That was the other big seller at the Swabian restaurant where I worked.

Well, hay fever has set in here. Is anyone else suffering yet? Must get some tablets and eye drops today or I think I'll scratch my eyes out. Ds is sneezing all the time too.

AntiqueMuppet Tue 23-Apr-13 09:42:22

Ooh I love Käsespätzle, admylin. Will you have to buy a lot for the next school trip?

Hope the Maultaschen work out, Wally. I've never tried them but they sound really good.

admylin Tue 23-Apr-13 10:07:46

Hi Antique, how are things? Is the garden starting to take shape?

We still don't know what to buy for the school trip as the teacher didn't even turn up to the meeting! I was shock that she didn't even bother to let the Elternsprecher know.

We stayed for 35 minutes and discussed sending some packs of water as the dc all like fizzy water and there is only tap water at the hostel. Ds is OK with tap water though. A couple of parents complained about the state of the school building and then we all went home.

Well, I'm off to taxi dd to her swimming class.

Nutella DS1 has suffered with croup every spring and autumn since he was 1, we have steroid suppositories and a nebuliser to give him if it gets very extreme and he has been admitted to hospital overnight with it before too.

It is very scary the first time but as you get used to handling it it becomes less so. We were told DS1 would grow out of it by age 5, but he had his last attack in March at 5.5 so I don't know yet if he has... We have found that the croup tends to happen when he already has a cold and then exerts himself outdoors (the last bout was the night following a football tournament). However you can't decide to wrap an active child in cotton wool each time they have a cold, and we have just decided to expect it in those circumstances and I sleep in his room ready for it if we are expecting it to happen! We haven't needed the steroids since he was 4 - now calming him down keeps it under control, it gets worse when they panic. I read to DS1 for hours at a time when it happens, and it stops it getting to the point where he needs medication or hospital. However when they are babies like your DS1 it is harder to tackle in that way! Hopefully it will be a one off for you - it sometimes is - but once a child has had it twice it is likely they are prone to it, and you learn to expect it.

Have the hospital given you the suppositories? We got them when he was admitted, and if we give him one we have to take him to the paediatrician the next day for a check up (and a prescription for another as they only give out 2 at a time). The suppositories work within 30 minutes - we were told that in the unlikely even they didn't we were to take him straight to hospital, but luckily we have never had to since the first time.

admylin how annoying about the school trip teacher not turning up! Do you think she just forgot? Have you looked on ebay etc. for 2nd hand bikes? Ebay, local paper, big bike sales of abandoned / stolen recovered and not reclaimed bikes that happen a couple of times a year in most towns/ cities? New bikes are expensive but I'd bet you could source 2 affordable 2nd hand ones? Otherwise look on the internet - DD and DS1 both needed 20 inch bikes at the same time and DH found them on the internet for hugely less than in bike shops. Ebay can also sometimes be a lead to local 2nd hand bike retailers who will have more in stock than they list - we got a Puky Scooter that way for €20 that would have been €100 new. I guess it depends whether there is any street cred problem for teens with 2nd hand bikes, but by the sound of it not having one is a bigger social inconvenience! Our kids would also hate to be bikeless as all the kids are out on bikes all summer, so we go the 2nd hand route and get the next size up bike when needed, looking at it as a boarderline essential, if it doesn't co-incide with birthdays (new bikes are birthday presents only).

Oh sorry forgot to say, yes (touch a lot of wood) DS2's sleep continues to be like that of a whole different child! I think it's been a full week now! He's slept between 9pm and 5am every single night, and on a couple of occassions has been asleep before 8pm, and on a couple of mornings slept right through til 6.15am!!!!!! Its just totally unbelievable by contrast to the almost 2 full years of being so hard to get to sleep and waking every couple of hours, sometimes hourly, all night long! Amazing. The change was also so abrupt. I really can't say "yes, we used such and such a technique" or bought some wonder gadget, or radically altered his diet (although I have played around with all those things over the time his sleep has been so bad) unfortunately - I think he was just ready.

The move to his new room may have been linked - although his sleep initially got worse not better, he was in his own room about 10 days before he suddenly started sleeping. I also stopped giving him milk before bed, but he still has it in the day, I just stopped the evening cup, wondering if there might be a mild intolerance leading to tummy ache/ discomfort. I briefly tried soya milk but he absolutely loathed it and had huge tantrums when he took a sip of what he thought was milk and got soya (I dudn't like it da dusgusting milk! Dis one isn't a (DS2's name) milk!" So I just swapped it for water, and continued with regular milk on cereal and regular dairy products in the day, so if it is connected it is literally just the cup he used to have before his bedtime story. The main thing was probably that DH managed one night to get him to sleep without holding his hand - he sat on the chair in his room instead. That was a huge break through, and the next night I tried it too - DS2 complained, but only with words, he didn't cry at all, and I had to put him back to bed 5 or 6 times, but eventually he went to sleep, and after a few nights of that he was sleeping through. We still sit in his room while he falls asleep but no longer have to hold his hand. It does still usually take up to an hour, but 2 nights ago I told him I was going to the toilet after 40 mins, and crept out - usually he would cry or follow me, but he didn't, and when I checked back after 10 mins he was asleep! So I think maybe I can see a time in the not too distant future when we can gradually do that sooner and sooner after putting him to bed and get to the point where we can just say night-night after story, and go downstairs like you do with a normal child grin

AntiqueMuppet Tue 23-Apr-13 12:20:51

That's really good news about your DS2's sleep, MrTumbles. I really like the latest picture on FB of him in the little car smile

Nutella Sorry to hear about Nutellachen's croup. I have non experience of croup at all, I'm afraid. I hope he isn't suffering too much and that he's better soon.

The garden is coming along slowly, admylin, although the weather has been so nice that we just end up sitting and enjoying the sunshine rather than gardening. How odd that the teacher didn't let anyone know they went coming. I wonder what happened.

WallyBantersYoniBox Tue 23-Apr-13 12:55:58

They are very delicious - and 4.99 for 24 at Marktkauf if you have a branch nearby - fed the three of us for two meals with the broth and vegetables. I can recommend!

Spatzle is huge in Switzerland and yes I've had the cheesy one, it was the original Macaroni cheese I think as the Pennsylvania Dutch (Deutsch) took it over to the US with most of the staple foods there.

Quite a shared palate I think between the Alsace, Swabian and Swiss in this region.

Enjoy your day ladies!

bis später x

LinzerTorte Tue 23-Apr-13 15:24:58

Mmm, am starting to feel quite hungry with all this talk of Spätzle and Pennsylvania Dutch food (they make delicious pies too!). I've never had Maultaschen, though.

I'm still struggling to keep up with the thread in between work and the ridiculous amount that DD1 has to learn for school at the moment. She's just told me that she has an English test on Friday on top of the geography one that we're already spending hours revising for, but at least it shouldn't require quite as much revision now that her spelling has improved a lot.

AntiqueMuppet Tue 23-Apr-13 20:17:29

Thank you whoever it was on here who recommended The Hunger Games. (*Linzer*, perhaps?) I read it today and absolutely loved it - I think my heart was going at three times it's normal speed throughout the whole book. Now to exercise some self-control and not download the second one straight away. grin

LinzerTorte Wed 24-Apr-13 07:06:18

Antique I can't honestly remember, but it could well have been me as I read it about a year ago and thoroughly enjoyed it (much to my surprise, as it's not the type of book I'd normally read). I've only read the first in the series, but keep meaning to order books 2 and 3. If only the Book People shipped to Austria; they have the whole trilogy for 5 pounds at the moment... I know I could get the second two books for about the same price on my Kindle, but I'd quite like to have the "proper" books. grin

admylin Wed 24-Apr-13 07:43:29

Could have been me as I've just read book 2 and 3 in English that we got for a quarter of the price of the German versions. Ds read part 1 in German and wanted the next book but it was about 17 or 18€ in German for one book so I got both in English for 8 pounds!

I have another tip for anyone looking to kit the dc out in sports gear. Just ordered a lot of sports wear 80% reduced and only 1 pound delivery to Germany from Sportsdirect.com. Jogging trousers for ds for under 4 pounds and sport t-shirts for 3 pounds (Slazenger, Umbro etc).

How is the revision going Linzer? What are the topics in geography? They really go in depth in some subjects don't they? Dd is doing stuff in biology, year 8 that I remember having in my biology O'level exam!

LinzerTorte Wed 24-Apr-13 08:27:54

That sounds like a real bargain, admylin. I've looked at Sportdirect before and, while the sportswear itself is very cheap, delivery was extortionate IIRC... have just checked and it's 10 pounds to Austria, which isn't as bad as I thought (I vaguely remembered 30 pounds). But WHY is it so often so much more expensive to have things delivered to Austria than to Germany; surely there should be an EU-wide delivery price? hmm

Geography revision is, well, it's going! She just has so much to learn and, like you say, it's so in-depth that we could spend weeks revising it all. We have to revise the solar system, continents (including main rivers, mountain ranges, etc.), map reading, the globe (longitude and latitude, hemispheres, equator and several other terms that I'd never heard of) and various other topics that escape me at the moment. I suppose there must be 10-11 year olds who are capable of revising it all on their own, but DD1 isn't one of them so it's incredibly time-consuming.

It makes me realise how easy I had it at school and how much more thorough Austrian schooling is. I didn't even start doing geography until I was 13 and I think we spent most of the first year learning about India and crop rotation!

itsMYNutella Wed 24-Apr-13 09:19:07

mrtumbles thank you for the croup info! DS at long last likes being in the wrap I have for him (and has slept three solid hours in there while I was trying not to drop food in his ear eating lunch with a friend last week) and i put him in there when we went to the hospital. I think that helped to calm him while we waiting to be seen. Poor little man was exhausted! He hasn't had a repeat since Sunday night (and they didn't give us any medicine for him to take home) but he is still coughing and wheezing.
He had his U4 last week (... Or the week before) and I mentioned asthma to the dr because my dad and one of my older brothers has it (DB was in and out of hospital with it as a child and we had a nebuliser and everything at home for him as well). I have eczema and have noticed a few dry spots on DS that I'm hoping are more likely caused by central heating and the cold weather.

Anyway... Really glad DS2's sleep has improved mrtumbles! That is great news.

Wally when I first moved to Germany DP lived in Nürnberg. It was an interesting time trying new foods smile here in Hannover (where we live now) the speciality is currywurst... Which I don't understand. It is essentially a chopped up sausage in ketchup confused I do miss the brezeln stands on every corner though. Whenever DP goes to Nürnberg for work he asks what he can bring me, I always say brezeln smile although I don't know why he asks because he goes from the train station to his companies building and then back to the train station and home...

admylin that is annoying that the teacher didn't turn up. But when you do get a list the offer is still there, feel free to borrow whatever you wish!

Lentils the list of stuff you chucked made me smile imagining you in a flat with a ridiculous number of fairy lights and lava lamps.

Linzer perhaps they have to price it higher to make sure it shipped directly to Austria and not via Australia?

DS seems alright in himself (although yesterday a couple of times when he sneezed there was a lot of snot and he looked very surprised and displeased by it) but I can hear he is still croaky when he "talks".
I told a friend that DS is very chatty and they thought I was mad. Until their next visit. I find he needs a little time to warm up when visitors come but when there is lots of talking (particularly laughter) he seems to want to join in.
We are off to visit grandma (my DM) in June when DS will be just 5 months. I spoke to her yesterday and got the impression that I should be giving him solids by then.... Hopefully in amongst the thousand different opinions we will figure it all out for ourselves... Hopefully...

hupa Wed 24-Apr-13 10:47:24

Nutella I hope ds is feeling better soon. Croup is really horrible, especially when they are so small. Ds had it a few times, but had grown out of it by the time he was 3. We also had the steroid suppositories and a nebuliser, like Tumbles. Ds did also have a few patches of eczema when he was young, but they also disappeared after a couple of years.

admylin We also got the bikes out at the weekend and realised we need to get a new one for ds. Friends have got a second hand one, which will hopefully be o.k. When he was small he always had dd´s old bikes and didn´t mind that they were pink with Bibi Blocksberg stickers on, but would die of shame if he had to do that now.

MrTumbles You must be delighted with ds2´s sleep.

linzer That amount of geography to learn at one go sounds like madness.

We´ve got an Elternabend tonight about ds´s Klassenfahrt. Hopefully the teacher will turn up. They´re only going away for one night, so I can´t imagine they need much more than a change of clothes, some pyjamas and a toothbrush.

WallyBantersYoniBox Wed 24-Apr-13 14:32:09

Yes I am now absolutely addicted to the local Swiss Brezel, or Laugenbrezel too. It's my 6 week treat to have my haircut and then buy a big Brezel mit butter from the store around the corner (and then scoff it before I get home to DH and DS. blush)

If I go to a Logistics meeting at my head office in Herzogenaurach, they usually have a full plate of them on the desk during the meeting and I find it really hard to concentrate!

I know it will be a reverse craving if I ever return to the UK, along with the Pommes spice you have on your fries in Germany.

I don't really get the Curry wurst thing either, especially the sprinkle of curry powder they put on the top.

I don't cover everything in Aromat though so I'm not completely converted to the "Germanic" way of life. grin

admylin Wed 24-Apr-13 14:44:17

Hupa shame we're not nearer as I have two almost new mountain bikes (24 Inch) in the cellar! Back when we got them dd was still in her tomboy stage so she chose a black and white mountain bike with suspension etc. I suspect she'd rather have a nice city bike with front shopping basket now!

Nutella did the doctor say you could test ds for asthma? I have asthma and when ds had suffered his 6th or 7th cough one winter we got him tested. He was OK (no asthma) but he had to be brave and give some blood for the test (he was just over 2).

Thanks for the offer for the outdoor stuff. Got the list today and the main thing we're going to have to spend money on is shoes as he will need proper walking boots and a pair of trainers that can get wet. He won't want to wet his 'good' trainers and it'd probably ruin them anyway. Any idea where to get Wanderschuhe at an affordable price in Hannover?

Linzer those are exactly the same topics that dd had in year 5 too. They repeat some of it in year 7 too and we had to get her old work out to work out the longitude and latitude questions!
Sportsdirect didn't used to deliver abroad at all. I ordered there a few times and got it sent to my parents' place. They took off all the plastic bags and labels and posted the stuff on to me. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that it would only cost me 1 pound from now on.

Wally I told dh the Käsespätzle/macaroni cheese story last night and he wouldn't believe me, he said if it's got pasta in it must have been the italians who invented it!

LinzerTorte Wed 24-Apr-13 15:32:36

admylin The good thing is that DD2 and DS are often around when DD1 revises for tests, so hopefully some of it is going in and they'll remember a bit when it's their turn! Is the 1 pound postage a special offer or permanent? It said 5 pounds when I looked earlier, which still isn't bad (and half the price of postage to Austria, grr). I have a lot of things sent to my parents' address too; I wanted to buy some tights for DD2 from Mothercare recently, but they would have charged 15 pounds delivery!

Wally I've just had to google Aromat as I'd never heard of it.

hupa Hope the Elternabend goes OK. Is it your DD's first Klassenfahrt?

Nutella I can never remember the guidelines for starting on solids - it used to be 4-6 months when mine were little, then it was 6 months at the earliest... and weaning advice seems to vary from country to country. I wish I'd heard of BLW when DD1 was little as spoon feeding her was a nightmare; it got much easier when I could give her finger foods, but they weren't recommended until around 9-10 months at the time.

DD1 has exchanged phone numbers with a boy at school. shock She said "we might see us" and was worrying a bit about the logistics as he lives in the next town, although she doesn't seem too desperate to phone him.

WallyBantersYoniBox Wed 24-Apr-13 16:49:22

How funny, at lunch time every German and Swiss colleague smothers their food in Aromat. I'd never heard of it, perhaps it's more of a regional thing here.

LinzerTorte Wed 24-Apr-13 17:26:31

Or maybe it just hasn't made it to Austria along with affordable postage. grin

cheaspicks Thu 25-Apr-13 09:49:20

Hi all. Sorry I haven't posted for ages. Hopefully I can remember now what everyone's up to.

Welcome, wally. I must say I've never heard of Aromat either, but I'm in the former East, so it may not have made it here yet. Is it like Maggi? Dh's family would be happy for absolutely everything to taste only of Maggi hmm apart from MIL who would like everything to taste sweet and thinks that all non-diabetics must feel the same. I love Maultaschen when I've had them, though. Maybe I should look for ome veggie ones in the supermarket.

linzer ooh, a potential first boyfriend grin Has she phoned him yet?

admylin it must be annoying having to buy expensive things like walking boots when you know your dc will grow out of them soon enough. We've got the opposite bike problem - dd has a very small Laufrad with no handbrake, but she is adamant that she doesn't need/want a pedal bike yet. Our neighbours have offered to swap the laufrad for a bigger one, but dd won't entertain that idea either. Oh well, it saves us some money, I suppose.

nutella croup sounds scary. I hope it was a one-off for your ds. When to wean seems to be one of these things that really bothers other people, but I think you're right to just follow your instinct. I know one mum who started feeding Gläschen at 16 weeks because it says "Ab 4. Monat" on the label hmm and another who didn't give solids until 9 months because she wanted to stick to raw, local, seasonal produce (no bananas!) which majorly limited what she could think of grin. As long as you're somewhere in between those extremes you'll be doing fine!

antique I looked at the trilogy of the Hunger Games in a bookshop last weekend and didn't buy it. Am regretting it slightly now you've raved about it, but I suppose I could order it at some point.

lentils I am in awe of your decluttering. I think I go through my wardrobe regularly, but it's still full of stuff I don't wear. One of these days I will finally manage to get rid of those things I keep but don't know why.

I had been meaning to ask you about kale, as I never see it fresh in the supermarket. Do you just sprinkle it on pizza? How else do you use it? We use Dr Oetker pizza base mix when we make our own and usually top with masses of veg - broccoli, sweetcorn, onion, red peppers, pepperdew - and mozzarella of course. Might have pizza tonight, thinking about it!

mrtumbles I'm so pleased for you that your ds2 is finally sleeping well. You must be feeling amazing - if you haven't forgotten how to sleep through yourself by now, of course!

I've had flu the past couple of weeks and have to go and see now if I can play the oboe without collapsing/having a coughing fit. I'm supposed to be playing in a memorial concert on Saturday for a friend of the family who has died, so I really don't want to have to cancel. I'm definitely getting the flu jab next year...

AntiqueMuppet Thu 25-Apr-13 12:12:50

Hope you feel better soon, cheas. Good luck with the oboe & I hope the memorial concert goes well. I have the first Hunger Games book on my Kindle but I think we worked out that you can't lend them to other Kindles with the German Amazon otherwise I'd happily lend it to you.

Wally I've never heard of Aromat either! I'll ask DH tonight whether he's heard of it. Is it like a Swiss version of Maggi?

Linzer Any news on the budding romance? smile How is the revision going?

hupa How did the Elternabend go? Hope it won't be an expensive overnighter.

Nutella I don't really get Currywurst either. It's nice enough...

admylin Any news on Berlin?

I've just started reading The Help, which I think was also recommended by someone on here and I'm really enjoying it.

I took DS to a really nice playground this morning and he had the time of his life, but the other mums there were quite unfriendly which was a bit of a downer. I'm really trying to get to know people here but it's quite an unfriendly city and I'm only really managing to get to know expats, which is nice, but I don't want to be the expat who only mixes with other expats, if that makes sense. A silly worry, I know.

cheaspicks Thu 25-Apr-13 13:28:25

antique I don't think that's a silly worry at all. Expats are much more likely to suddenly move away, or send their dc to some international kiga or school that you don't think is worth the extra travelling time. I think it's reasonable to want to have some friends who are your friends because you're a good fit, not because they're also expats/had their dc the same month as you.

Do you go to that playground regularly? Maybe you need to be there a lot so you start to recognise some of the other regulars and they you. I think sometimes it's very hard to get past saying the obvious but annoying stuff "wow, he's really tall for 18 months" and then people simply don't know what to say next. I don't think it's necessarily unfriendliness.

LinzerTorte Thu 25-Apr-13 13:54:24

Antique I know how you feel, as I went through something similar when I last lived in Germany. In the end, I decided that I would stop worrying about spending time with the people I most enjoyed spending time with just because they happened to be expats too. Having said that, all but one of my closest friends there has now moved away so it's not always an ideal situation (although only one had children at the time; I think that people with children do tend to stick around longer). Now, I have quite a good mix of both expat and local friends; strangely enough, it's taken me longer to get to know other expats (few and far between here) than it has locals.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Help too; it took me a chapter or so to get into it, but I couldn't put it down once I had.

cheas That sounds like a nasty dose of the flu; hope you're feeling better now and are able to play at the concert.

DD1 and the boy now have each other's numbers and are arranging a day to meet; DD1 said they'd be talking about it at school tomorrow. grin She's gone on a theatre trip this afternoon, so no time to revise geography thank goodness - I suspect DH will do some revision with her when he's home from work, though.

It's parents' evening at primary school, but DD2's teacher said I didn't need to see her if I didn't want to as DD2 is doing fine, so I'm just going to see DS's teacher. I'd have had a 40 minute wait otherwise, so was quite glad to get out of it; I'm only with her for two minutes normally anyway. The teachers here don't seem to go in for all the over-the-top praise that they do in the UK (according to what I read on FB, anyway); if a child isn't having any problems, there's basically nothing to talk about.

hupa Thu 25-Apr-13 16:01:43

antique Dh always says that Germans don´t do small talk (or maybe that´s just him wink ), so I think it can be hard to strike up conversations with strangers. I think as cheaspicks says, if you go a few times and start seeing a few familiar faces, it might become easier.

I really enjoyed The Help. I haven´t seen the film yet, but often find films based on books a bit disappointing.

Linzer I agree with you about the parents´ evenings. I´m always out in a couple of minutes with dd´s teacher because she´s doing well, so there´s nothing to talk about. Funnily enough I spend a lot longer talking to ds´s teacher grin.

This will be ds´s first Klassenfahrt, but I think he´ll really enjoy it. The Elternabend lasted a grand total of 15 minutes and in that time the teacher managed to talk about the Klassenfahrt, eine Lesenacht and Zeugnisse. I was pretty impressed because these things usually drag on for hours. I ended up going to the local Eiscafe with a few of the parents as we´d planned to be out for most of the evening, so decided to make the most of it.

cheaspicks I hope you´re feeling better soon.

admylin Thu 25-Apr-13 16:16:30

hupa sounds like my kind of Elternabend! I wish ours were like that! Is your ds looking forward to the klassenfahrt?

Linzer have you been asking your dd1 a hundred questions about the boy? Or are you holding back and trying to play it cool grin! My dd reckons she would only be interested in an American boy so there's no point me asking about any of the boys at school - maybe she said that to make sure I didn't?!

Antique I've been through the same thing with playgrounds. I used to go to a village playground when the dc were tots and as we arrived the other dc would gather up their sand toys and bobby cars and go home!! I did make a couple of friends at playgrounds so do keep going. MAybe the grumpy lot that were there today won't be there next time and you can get into a conversation.

cheas hope the concert can go ahead. I asked lentil about the kale and it's grünkohl and is available frozen in Rewe. I think it's seasonal and traditional in north Germany. They have a dish with Grünkohl and some sort of strong Wurst, smells disgusting!

Well, today was the yearly Zukunftstag for all dc from year 5 to year 9 so my 2 were 'at work'. Ds went for a visit on the psychiatric ward at the hospital and dd went to dh's lab to count cells for dh's student then he took her to the Mensa for lunch. Ds has been asleep since he got home and dd is revising for geography (it's Schalenbau der Erde, Vulkane and Erdplatten in year 8 Linzer just so you have abit of Vorfreude!)

AntiqueMuppet Thu 25-Apr-13 17:16:24

cheas We've been to the playground a few times and seen the mums out and about. One was quite happy to chat a bit until the others arrived then I was just glared at and openly blanked. Sometimes they say hi, normally they don't. I've heard the same complaint from a few other people I know here too. Ah well! I don't want to soundalike too much of a misery guts, I do have some lovely (expat) friends, this morning just got me down a little.

Linzer Hope parents' evening goes well. How exciting about DD's 'meeting' smile

hupa it sounds like you had a nice evening at the Eiscafe! I haven't seen the film version of The Help either.

Sounds like your two had a busy day, admylin!

Best go, DS is angry that I won't let him fill my slipper with Duplo while my foot is still in it. A perfectly reasonable thing to be angry about :D

itsMYNutella Thu 25-Apr-13 19:11:31

Good evening everyone grin I'm in a good mood because the sun is shining and some of the nappies I ordered for DS are here (I'm waaay too excited about them honestly)

antique that would really upset me if the same thing happened. I'm very happy to have met a couple of mums at courses that I get on with really well. It's also much easier for me to meet one or two people because then I follow what they are talking about. A group of four or more and I find it a struggle.

cheas so sorry you're poorly! I know a few people who have has awful flu thus winter (might also consider a jab next year... I think this year we were very lucky)

admylin I've thought about it and can't think if a good place... I don't suppose primark do something passable do they?? Otherwise ebaykleinanzeigen is usually pretty good.

Linzer your DD1 sounds so lovely. Can't wait for more of her dating updates wink

hupa thank you for the well wishes. I'm contemplating taking him to the dr again tomorrow for a quick check before the weekend...

We have "the help" recorded, I think DP can put it on a disc so we can post it if someone would really like to see it. I loved the book and although the film is never going to be as good it was still a really enjoyable film.

Oh we also have skyfall if anyone hasn't seem it (I luuurve Daniel Craig even if he is rather short it!)

itsMYNutella Thu 25-Apr-13 19:13:19

hupa I forgot to say, that sounds like a great parents evening! I hope you enjoyed the ice cream grin

AntiqueMuppet Thu 25-Apr-13 19:55:48

Oh, Nutella, you just reminded me: I still have Call the Midwife if anyone wants it. I really enjoyed it.

TabithaGraves Thu 25-Apr-13 20:58:03

I really liked both The Hunger Games trilogy (though I found the 3rd one the weakest by some margin) and The Help (and also the film of The Help). When I lived in Belgium I would regularly get English language books through amazon.de but now I have switched pretty much entirely to the kindle app on the iPad. I said I would never give up hard copy, but then I went ahead and did just that! Oh well, I suppose it will make our move just that little bit easier.

We had found a house and were negotiating the lease when the owner decided she didn't want to rent the house out at all, so now we are back to square one. We've been searching around on Immobilienscout and have found another potential candidate, so I have my fingers crossed that we will be able to sort it all out soon!

I do definitely worry a bit about meeting local friends but hope that the fact that I will be working full-time in an office will help -- I hope that even though I will be an outsider initially, people will be won over by my winning personality.hmm

LentilAsAnything Thu 25-Apr-13 21:23:22

Hope you feel better soon, cheas.
I lightly fry all the vegetables I put on my pizza before I put them on the pizza, so I just chuck in a couple of balls of frozen kale towards the end. I keep meaning to add it to the jug of hot water when I'm doing the yeast, so it's in the base, but it's always hectic as DS loves to mix and roll the dough, and I keep forgetting.

Antique, hope you aren't still feeling down about the unfriendly people. Give it time.

LT, ooh, how exciting re DD! smile Hope he is a nice boy!

Nut, yeah, my home used to be a right hippy haven. I loved it, but I now prefer a much simpler space, I feel lighter for having less junk. cheas, I have a long way to go still. Am wondering just how basic a capsule wardrobe I can manage. I tend to wear the same few outfits, but I keep a few things 'just in case' - but no just in case has come up in years! smile

Hello to everyone else!

admylin Fri 26-Apr-13 10:02:15

Morning all! Just got back from the car wash, the car was really in need of a wash. Probably all that yellow tree pollen will appear in the next few days and ruin the shine!

Nutella I think I might be lucky in TKMaxx for walking shoes. Otherwise I've thought about going and trying some on in the sport shop and then once we know the size is good for a certain make, ordering it from UK as it'll be cheaper there for sure.

Tabitha how annoying about the house. Hope the other option works out.

At the car wash the front number plate came off, no idea if it was the pre-scrub by hand that I paid extra for or the machine but anyway they replaced the number plate holder but with a second hand one and it's also got a bit of plastic hanging off! I suppose thos ethings are cheap enough so I might se eif I can buy one.

Drama on the job front here! Dh's old boss rang for the second time to say not to accept the Berlin job. He said there's no way you can be employed by Dresden university and stay in Berlin long term. Dh won't consider a move to Dresden. It's complicated.

LentilAsAnything Fri 26-Apr-13 19:34:03

I can't hear the words car wash without feeling like I should breakout my finest disco moves. smile

Pizzas are in the oven, stretchiest bases I've ever made! Even remembered to add curly kale to the yeast, so it's in the base.

admylin, crikey, what a headache! Your poor husband, all this hassle. What are you going to do? What's wrong with Dresden?

Hi, wow I'm miles behind and no time to post properly, bit overrun here with visitors, dog sitting, DS 2's birthday, cake baking, parties... He had his tots party yeaterday, got to clean and ice cake no 2time and prepare home made pizzas (topical) ;) for the extended family descending at luch (MIL always turns up hours early...).

Just wanted to say admylin Aldi have walking shoes atm. Argh about the job madness!

Homework tantrum happening, off I go, waves to everyone!

admylin Tue 30-Apr-13 08:29:13

MrTumbles from the fb pics it looks like your ds had a great birthday! I don't have a clue who all these figures are theat he loves! When my 2 were that age they didn't exist I don't think.
Here we have Aldi Nord and they didn't seem to have any wanderschuhe. Aldi sud has different specials (sometimes better too) and I also manage dto miss the lidl offer as they had them recently but all sold out now of course. I 've found some on sale for around 50€ so will have to drag ds out to try them on.

Lentil Dresden is probably a great city but dh is abit scared of being too foreign looking as he's heard tales of racism. No idea if it's true or still up to date info but he doesn't want to risk it.

They have so far promised to match his pay atleast and the initial contract is 2 years but the boss said that's standard nowadays for universities and the project he'd be setting up is definately funded for longer and would take 3 to 4 years to get any decent results anyway so it should be safe confused

LentilAsAnything Tue 30-Apr-13 11:26:14

That's so awful, what a stupid world we live in. How unfair.

platanos Wed 01-May-13 08:24:17

Hello everyone,

ach, I just can't keep up. I can just about read the posts, have attempted a reply a couple of times but gave up half way as the dc needed dinner, showers, help with homework - you know the story!

So another attempt, but not sure how far I will get.

admylin the decision sounds very complicated. How is dh feeling about it all? and you? are his present colleagues still being nice to him?

home-made pizzas sounds lovely. do all pizza bases have yeast in them? I don't get on with yeast, or at least haven't in the past. Maybe after nearly 4 years here I have absorbed the baking bread gene?

linzer any developments on dd1 and "the boy"? I have parent's evening next week. I have not been told not to come in - oh dear. Btw I have the 9th and 10th May off if you have time to meet up?

Friendships? I have also found it hard. I kept away from the ex-pat groups on purpose (not sure that was wise really), and making friends with limited german was hard at first. I had some similar experiences antique when we lived in the UK: just an unfriendly bunch at the playground. Remember: it's not you, it's them. But it might also be that they need to get to know you better. Are local people quite local? I am amazed by how many parents in dds school grew up in this part of town, went to the same schools, go to the same church etc.

tabitha any luck with the house hunting? It must be hard to do it from such a distance. Have you got anyone helping you at this end? Do you find you read more since you went electronic? I read a lot more, and am much happier for doing so.

We had a lovely time with my family. It was lovely to see all the children playing together. I miss them now. They stayed in a flat round the corner - no space here and we are on different timetables (my dc had to go to school and their cousins were sleeping until about 10).

Just heard a rumour that the school is going to have a Vorschulklasse next year. I am thinking ds might be better off there, or at least it has opened a new option. I am going to ask at Kindergarten and see what they say. He was stamped (that is how it felt) as fit for school but the head also tutted about him being an august boy, and how there are often problems. dh wants ds to be "tested professionally" to see what is best but I am not sure what that would be or who would do it confused. Part of the reason is that we thought that dd1's teacher would take on an 1. Klasse and we were happy with that. But she (teacher) is now pregnant and I am not sure about the other two teachers - heard some nasty things about them.

And my time is up as the dc are getting restless (ie noisy and fighting) and we need to get out. Hope you all have a nice day - sunshine is here! We had great weather while my family was here...they flew back to 7 degrees and hail. In Spain, at the end of April. Something is seriously wrong.

waves to everybody else!

LinzerTorte Thu 02-May-13 08:00:08

I can't keep up either; the DC are around too much at the moment! DD2 and DS were off on Monday and Tuesday and then of course everyone was at home yesterday, so this is the first day I've had to myself for nearly a week. I also managed to accept some work on Monday before realising that it was a schulautonomer Tag, but luckily it didn't take too long and the DC managed to entertain themselves while I was working (mainly with the help of the TV, it must be admitted).

DD1 had her "date" on Tuesday, but she hasn't told me much about it other than the fact that they went for a frozen yogurt, she paid and they haven't arranged to see each other again. I don't think it's the romance of the century grin but it's good that she's meeting classmates outside school; she only really plays with our neighbours otherwise.

platanos Glad you had a good time with your family; sounds like their weather has now reached us! (Only DD1 wasn't woken by the storms in the night.) 9th and 10th sound good - will PM you. I can also recommend a child psychologist in the 19th district if you do want to have your DS tested.

admylin It all sounds very complicated on the job front and must be a difficult decision for your DH to make. I've been trying not to show too much interest in DD1's date as a) she won't tell me anything if I ask, and b) I don't want her to feel like she's under too much pressure (I wanted to ask her whether it was a "proper" date, but managed to restrain myself!).

Lentil grin at car wash.

Nutella I'd like to see The Help but at the same time am a bit worried about it not living up to the book. I kept looking out for it at the cinema, but it was never on on the rare occasions that we were able to go. I'd also be interested in watching Call the Midwife Antique; my parents watched it but they didn't record it for us (the cheek).

hupa Austrians do small talk, but I'm hopeless at it if it's someone I don't know. There's an elderly man who lives near us who's always trying to strike up conversation, but he's incomprehensible and there are only so many times you can say "bitte?". I usually just nod and smile. blush

Tabitha Good luck with the house-hunting. I can't imagine ever giving up proper books despite my Kindle - I like the look and feel of them too much. Apart from DH's books, that is; I wish I could get rid of all his yellowing and musty old books...

MrTumbles Hope party no. 2 went well. I'm so glad that my ILs aren't typical Austrians in that they don't expect us to have a family party for the DC as well; one party is more than enough for me!

admylin Thu 02-May-13 10:34:28

Just got back from doing the big shop, did quite well and got meals for 5 or 6 days atleast. Would be good if I didn't have to go to a shop for that length of time too!

Linzer good news that your dd is making friends. I've seen The Help and it does cut alot out of the book as most films do but it's still great and definately worth watching! The book was great and one that I'll read again for sure.

platanos good luck with the vorschulklasse. Is it mainly the kindergarden people who decide/suggest that a dc should go there or can you push for it as a parent?

Job news: so we've figured out now that the pay will be about 500€ short of what dh gets now as it's a Ost-Tarif and he's on West now and also he's on a higher scale than they say is their top scale (not sure if that's true or just part of negotiations) so he's fed up now because if they really want him then they should atleast try to be honest and make the position attractive.
To top it all, three of the Gymnasiums that I liked are full, one isn't taking any more pupils for year 9 and 10 and the others will only consider a year 10 if the average is 1,7. Ds is at 2,2 at the moment. Still leaves dd with less options.
It's starting to look as if we'd stay put if he goes for it (even if we change the flat for a smaller, cheaper one).

LinzerTorte Fri 03-May-13 07:27:58

That doesn't sound ideal admylin, particularly if they're not being honest with your DH. What a hassle for you with the Gymnasien as well. Is there any way he can negotiate a higher salary by telling them that the job would involve him taking a pay cut? From what I've heard, rent in Berlin isn't exactly cheap either.

Our KiGa had virtually no involvement with the starting-school process; DS's Kindergärtnerin did say that she thought the Vorschule would be the best option for him, but only after I'd asked her. It's basically all decided on the basis of the two hours they spend at school in the spring being observed at various Stationen and then in a discussion with the headteacher. It does seem to be up to the parents a lot of the time, though; DS's friend would normally have gone into the 1. Klasse but his mother asked if he could go into the Vorschulklasse and it wasn't a problem. Another boy from their KiGa was supposed to go to the Vorschulklasse but his parents wanted him to go into the 1. Klasse, so he did (and ended up changing schools, but that's another story).

Am meeting a friend for coffee in a bit and then have another friend coming round for coffee this afternoon, so must go and do some baking now... I'm going for my default brownie option, as I don't have time to look for another recipe!

admylin Fri 03-May-13 07:51:07

Linzer now I remember the system you went through with ds! It's a strange method really isn't it? I suppose if it also seems to be up to the parents a lot of the time, then platanos needn't worry about getting her choice of vorschulklasse.

Oh the joys of having dc in the school system! I'm so glad that I can see the end of it all sort of approaching us fast now. In 2015 ds will be getting ready to start his last year! Although, I wonder if it just transfers to worry about university even though they'll officially by adults by then!

LinzerTorte Fri 03-May-13 08:22:02

Well, it could be different at platanos's school; so much here seems to vary from school to school. It is a bit of a strange method; the reason we wanted DS to go to the Vorschule was quite different from the reason we were called in to see the headteacher to discuss the Vorschulklasse - they didn't pick up on his writing skills at all (our main concern and also his Kindergarten teacher's, which she'd spoken to me about previously). Personally, I think KiGa should have more of an input as they're the one who sees the child on a day-to-day basis, how he/she is around other children, what their concentration is like, etc.

If DH's niece is anything to go by, the worries just continue when they go to university. They were about to send a taxi for her in the middle of the night recently... no idea what's going on now though; we're not officially allowed to know anything anyway.

Must go and check on the brownies, think I can smell something!

AntiqueMuppet Fri 03-May-13 12:23:52

I'll pop Call the Midwife in the post for you on Monday, Linzer. Have a nice afternoon with your friends and enjoy your brownies -I'm tempted to start making some now too but I know as soon as I crack an egg or something similar DS will wake up. I don't think he's feeling very well at the moment so will only want to cling when he wakes up.

What a hassle, admylin! It all sounds so badly organised and almost secretive, but I suspect that is maybe to do with the way they organise things. How did you get on with the email?

Platanos Good luck with the Vorschulklasse for your DS. I think it's really positive that that is an option. Glad you had a nice time with your family. I'm trying to persuade mine to come over for my 'round' birthday this year but I don't think they will. Saying that, my brother arrives tonight, yay!

Good luck with the house hunt, Tabitha. Was it you who was moving to Wiesbaden? If it was I can ask around to see if anyone knows of anything available. we found our house through word of mouth (although I'm sure that's not normally how it works here.)

Hello to everyone else! Sorry I don't have time to post properly, I seem to have a million and one things to do this afternoon but I need food before I even think of starting so I'm off to find something tasty.

LinzerTorte Fri 03-May-13 17:40:37

That would be fab, thanks Antique. No rush though, as we're in the middle of a Downtonfest at the moment and have only just started watching the third series. Have a lovely time with your brother btw. smile

The brownies turned out quite well in the end; friend asked for the recipe, which is definitely a good sign! Now I just have to translate/convert it (it's an American recipe)... Had a nice chat with her, although was a little shock at some of the things the teacher said to her at the parents' evening last week (she started off with "Well, your children aren't the best in the class"!).

Also had a lovely morning with my other friend - my social life seems to be like buses at the moment - although it felt quite surreal discussing her starting chemo, buying a wig, etc. Luckily it does seem to have been caught at a fairly early stage so that's one positive at least.

platanos Sat 04-May-13 08:42:53

antique Hope you managed to get something done yesterday afternoon. Have a great time with your brother - how long is he here for?

I get on really well with my brother but he said something which upset me. He said I have it good here, with no older relatives to care for, or worry about. Of course he is right in a way. But on the other hand I miss my family lots, do worry and feel frustrated because I can't do much when they are ill. Besides I don't have any family support. I am sure everyone here knows what I mean, and I don't think we "have an easy deal". Or do we? It might not be a particulary hard deal but it is just different....

linzer hope all goes well for your friend. Fingers crossed. Glad the brownies turned out fine. Niece sounds a bit precious?!

admylin are the cupboards empty yet?!?! Do you feel better now that you have made a decision about the job? As for vorschulklasse, as linzer says a lot of it has to do with the parents. Athough I could say what I want and probably get it, I am just not sure of what would be better. DS was only assessed at the school for one hour in february (in a group of 6). I had not really given it much thought because until this year, our school did not have a vorschulklasse - vorschulkinder went into an 1. Klasse but were treated differently. If children who had been seen as okay for 1. Klasse struggled (in the first weeks) they would be treated as vorschulkinder for the rest of the year. But that seems to be different now. I have made an appointment with the Kindergarten staff next week so will see what they say and take it from there.

Off to get ready for swimming. Then going out for dinner tonight with the daughter of dh's cousin who is in town. dh and her got on really well. She made me feel like a real mum when she came round for dinner once (on her travels of the UK) and after eating said: "I have not eaten so well in weeks!" She's in her late 20s and just got married - curious to see who the lucky man is. Especially as a few years ago, she was in Australia, got involved with some sect and her family were really worried about her. She then came back, and decided to become a physio. Huge sigh of relief from the family smile.

have a fun day, and may the sunshine be with you.

Huhu [mile] I'm jut checking in briefly as I've been meaning to or weeks. It's very emotionally draining at the moment and we are not the on,y ones who are quite concerned about ds1. sad we started the other med today, and also I am determined to stand up to that witch of that Autismusverein. I mentioned last feb I think that I was having problems with them....and it's just really resurfaced again . Basically, they are ok as long as I don't once and opinion or different point of view. And I am too much of an 'engagierte Mutter' to just accept everything others say and do with my dc.

admylin I'm sorry it didn't work out in the end for your dh. And I really hope that his current boss will continue trying to keep him as an employee.

patanos I know how both you and your brother feel. I moved home hn my mum was terminally ill, and my dad was - partly because of my mum's illness- on the brink of suicide. I am soooo glad that we did make the decision o MV back to Germany, being able o spend lots f quality time with my mum, bing there for my dad when he waned to give up. I wouldn't change it for the word. And I am pretty sure that my brothers often wished they lived a bit closer. But sometimes it was difficult being the only chid out of four actually physically there. With my own problems as you know. And I did sometimes feel like my brothers had the better deal. Although still, when it came down to it, and especially looking back now, I am eternally grateful for the time I had with my mum. Much much more than my brothers did. I know everything about how she felt, how she looked etc etc - so I an really understand why you would feel hurt y wat your brother said!

antique lots of fun with your db smile

linzer hope your friend makes a full revovery!

Charlie, the dog, had hs first day at school day. He slept for hours afterwards!! And dh has his left in a cast, because he tore a tendon bouldering last weekend. He has an mrt booked fr Monday to see f he needs an op. apart from that e erything s as chaotic as usual wink

Waves to everyone I - once again blush missed!!!

Sorry for all the typos!!! I guess it shows I'm not spending enough time on my iPad, as I've still not got used to the keyboard ...

itsMYNutella Sun 05-May-13 08:53:52

Hello, I've been keeping up but DS doesn't always allow me to post (and when I'm reading on my phone I can't remember what I was going to write to who.

outnumbered I don't know what else to say except that you are amazing. That you carry on and put in so much effort for your boys is truly a testament to how lucky they are to have you as their mummy.

Linzer I made some millionaire shortbread and had to translate that for a friend - I'm going to try out a German recipe next time I bake wink do you want me to post you "the help"? I'd be happy to. - unless anyone else wants it first?

admylin I can't remember exactly but I think you did discuss Berlin with the DCs. Are they happy to be staying put? Really hope things at your DH's job improve! Or that he gets a really good offer somewhere.

Platanos it's never easy with family. When we moved back to Hannover BIL ( DP's oldest brother, who has always lived nearby) was honest enough to tell DP that he could now share the burden of the parents smile although now that we have provided the "Stamhalter" -it actually made my skin crawl when I saw that written in a card and understood what it meant confused - I'm pretty sure that BIL gets even less attention.

DS is slowly getting over his cough but it looks like teeth are not far behind. We have had some serious finger chewing, grumpiness, a raised temp and even a red cheek.... But it seems to have calmed down a bit this weekend.
We are also in cloth nappies grin I love em! Is only been a few days so we are still getting to grips with them; but I am really passionate about them and have been boring my friends to tears persuading others to give them a go. I hadn't expected to be so enthusiastic about them but I have been really surprised in oko Hannover not to find anyone who even knows anyone using cloth.

Right better go. DS doesn't know if he is more tired or more hungry and I need to get on with preparing my brunch! It's my birthday smile the chocolate cake is ready (although didn't rise as well as when I have made it in the past - in the UK sad ) and DP is in the kitchen being amazing.
Enjoy your Sunday everyone!

itsMYNutella Sun 05-May-13 08:54:14

Oooohhh that huge! Sorry!

Happy Birthday nutella. Hope you have a lovely day. The sun is shining here, and I hope the weather is kind to you too smile enjoy the chocolate cake!

Does anyone have the Tana Ramsey Family Kitchen cook book? There s a recipe for Brownies in there, and it's delicious!!!

admylin Sun 05-May-13 12:51:53

Happy birthday Nutella hope you have a lovely day. It's a nice sunny one atleast over on this side of Hannover!

outnumbered sounds like you've been really busy lately. Charlie looks adorable on the fb pics and I hope he's a quick learner and settles in fast for you. I would have no idea where to start house training a puppy. I guess you have to just take him out very often and praise him when he 'goes' outside.

platanos I've had similar comments to the one your brother said. The fact that we all missed out on having a helping hand or babysitting help because of our situation is never mentioned is it? I think bringing my dc up abroad with no reliable help at all has been one of the hardest jobs ever in my life!
Once I was at a get together back home in the UK, it was Saturday night and some of the husbands were complaining because they had to stay in to babysit and a couple of the women were moaning back that they hadn't been out for a couple of weeks, one woman said well I haven't been out for 3 weeks and another siad it had been 6 weeks since she'd been out. All I could say was well I haven't been out for 6 years so don't feel too badly done to!

Antique have a great time with your brother!
Linzer hope your friend recovers fully and the chemo does it's job. Must be a scary time.

We had a couple of dh's colleagues round last night. One is an assistenzarzt under dh's boss and he said that 18 of the doctors had written a letter and all signed it telling the boss that his behaviour and way of treating mitarbeiter has to change. I'm not sure if such a letter will make much difference, could even make his moods worse as he doesn't care. Only positive thing is, if he tells someone off and he finds out it wasn't their fault then he apologises.
Anyway, the colleague and his wife both talked to ds and gave him some good career advice and tips on getting through the Abitur years!

LinzerTorte Mon 06-May-13 07:57:17

admylin It's really hard being abroad with no help, isn't it? Even though we moved to the same country as my ILs before DD2 was born, they're not in good enough health to be of any practical help. Although I'm not as desperate for a break as I sometimes used to be (apart from when it gets to the eighth week of the summer holidays...), I still feel quite envious when I see other friends sending their DC off to their ILs or parents for the night or longer. Hope the letter to your DH's boss has some effect, even if the signs aren't too optimistic.

Nutella That would be fab if you didn't mind sending The Help - although am happy to wait if someone else wants it first, as I still have quite a backlog of DVDs to watch. Hope you enjoyed the rest of your birthday; the chocolate cake looked particularly delicious. smile

outnumbered So sorry about the problems you're having wrt your DS and the Autismusverein; it must be exhausting. Hope your DH is OK; an operation sounds like the last thing you need atm...

platanos Agree that we don't have an easy deal at all. We still have the worry about our parents - almost worse in some ways, as we're too far away to help - but none of the support provided by family being close by.

Grey and rainy here today and rain is forecast for most of the week, although at least it's no longer cold. Fingers crossed it rains on Thursday as forecast, so that platanos and I can meet up at soft play. smile

Glad you had a good birthday Nutella - the cakes look lovely on fb

I don't know on the living near parents - I don't get on very well with mine, and know they are not of a great deal of help with grandchildren, and help comes with industrial strength steel strings... so I am not sure I'm missing much! On the other hand I know they are always buying my niece (and to a lesser extent I think my nephew) things and paying for things she does, which my kids don't get as they aren't "in the loop" of what they do/ need etc. My mother had a phase of telling everyone that when she is old she will spend 4 months a year living with each of her daughters (implicit assumption she will outlive my dad there...) but my instant thought was "not til Hell freezes over, thaws out again and is made into a theme park" - my family wouldn't survive it! Seriously there is no way my marriage would survive! The effect on the kids would be unacceptable too. So I am well and truly glad 2 of my sisters who cope better with her live near her (around the corner). We have my in-laws here anyway, an hour from us, so I guess the situation is not the same as for Plantanos, Linzer and *Admylin and lots of the others on this thread. My in-laws are far more practical, hands on help than my own parents would be, and although there is also friction in the relationship from time to time, its more "normal"!

Outnumbered I am really curious about what school is for a dog? Is it puppy training classes? Who'd have thought they'd be so exhausting!

DH has been doom and gloom about money recently and making comments about how it would help if I got a job. I've done a linkedin profile (does anyone use it?) but I honestly can't actually see how I can work. When I point out the problems he says I am just making excuses before I've even looked into it - but Kindergarten have confirmed there won't be a place for DS2 in Jan, as they originally suggested there might be, as they have had applications from enough 3 year olds to take all the places in Sept. He should get a place next May, but its not certain til September 2014. Then there will still be the issue of school finishing at 11.20am - DS1 will be starting 1st class then so will have the 11.20 finish 3 times a week and 12.15 the other 2 days, and DD will have more longer days as she will be 4er Klasse, but will still be finishing at 1pm at the latest. I really don't want to shove them all into Mittagsbetrug and DS2 into full day KiGa at 3, its the exact opposite of what we always said we wanted in terms of bring the kids up, quite apart from the cost and the whole huge other problem of exactly how I'd find a job that paid enough to cover childcare and travel with enough left over yet still allowed me to be home for 4pm, when KiGa and Mittagsbetrug close, with my skill set and language limitations!

For me that's what's hard about living here - being dependent and having far fewer options on almost all fronts than I would in the UK!

Sorry, not replied to everyone and need to get out to go into town and cancel the extortionate drum lessons I put Ds1's name down for at the music school, which would cost half my annual VHS evening class earnings per year...

admylin Mon 06-May-13 09:06:49

MrTumbles when you explain all that to your dh what does he think? The after school club costs money too aswell as the full day Kindergarden. If you add that up and then add petrol/public transport costs for a month, how much would you have to earn to actually make a profit? Also I'm not sure about tax groups nowadays but if your dh has tax group III you'd be in V where you have to pay more tax so have even less left over.

Linzer lol at you wishing for rain on Thursday! Hope you have a sunny day alternative planned!

Any idea what a Tagesrucksack is meant to be? It's on the list of things ds needs on this trip. Is it just a rucksack as we know it or are they expecting some sort of high tech bag with some special features like toggles and pouches or whatever? We tried a few pairs of Wanderschuhe on atthe weekend but none were a good fit so we're waiting a couple of weeks. Size 43 wasn't too small but he said his toe was almost at the end but size 44 was slipping off. I think a walking shoe has to fit and not need extra soles and 2 pairs of socks to be comfotable (as suggested by friend who was with us) or not?

LinzerTorte Mon 06-May-13 09:31:51

admylin I would have thought that unless added extras were specified, a Tagesrucksack would just be a smallish rucksack that holds everything you need for the day. I've just googled it and found that they're "in Form und Ausstattung ganz verschieden"(and also discovered that you can get Drei-Tage-Rucksäcke - who knew? grin) so it doesn't sound like you need to look for anything specific. Re the walking shoes, I have vague memories that two pairs of socks (or one pair of thick socks) are recommended to prevent blisters - so you might buy walking shoes in a slightly bigger size than normal, although obviously they need to fit with whatever socks you're going to wear.

MrTumbles The work situation sounds very tricky; the school hours and long holidays certainly aren't conducive to working. I'm still considering whether it's worthwhile financially for me to continue working (after receiving my second quarterly bill from the Krankenkasse for €1300; I'm paying more than I'm earning hmm) and really need to look into it asap - and I don't have any childcare or travel costs.
I also wondered whether there was any point in me working when I was in tax class V!

admylin Mon 06-May-13 09:56:32

Linzer that's good info - thanks! We will return to the shop with 2 pairs of socks or atleast his thick socks and try again (ds will not be amused but then again he hates all kinds of shopping)! It does also say Wandersocken ion the list so better look into that too. Going by the list, if I stick to it then the Ausrüstungsliste could cost us almost as much as the trip itself!
Ds is now the proud owner of a pair of waterproof trousers like an adult version of the matschhose he had at kindergarden - an item that he will only be using for this week and only then if it actually rains!

hupa Mon 06-May-13 10:41:40

MrTumbles I agree that with all the additional costs involved it would be unlikely you would be any better off if you got a job. Maybe if you write out a list of the costs childcare (including school holidays), petrol etc. plus tax implications your dh will see that it´s a non starter.

admylin I agree with Linzer that thick socks are the way to go. It would also be good if you could persaude ds to wear the shoes a few times before he goes away to break them in. Just make sure he packs some plasters - just in case.

linzer It must be so frustrating paying out so much to the Krankenkasse, especially as it sounds as if you enjoy your work. I suppose if you hated it, it would be easier to just stop.

outnumbered Sorry to hear you´ve got so much stress at the moment. How have your dc taken to Charlie?

Nutella Happy belated birthday - I hope you enjoyed the cake.

Lovely weather here again today. No doubt it will stay sunny until the bank holiday and then we´ll have rain again.

Admylin it was when I explained that that he said I was making excuses without looking into it! . To have the children in childcare/ after school care from 8am to 4pm 5 days a week (not including holidays for the older 2) would cost €420 per month on top of the €85 a month we currently pay for DS1's morning only Kindergarten (so €502 altogether, but €85 we pay anyway). That's even before transport (another €200 a month at least if I had to get into Munich) and the tax and healthcare issues...

I think he thinks I am being negative and making excuses when I list all this, and don't think he sees the child care reality as he doesn't have to think about it usually - which is half the point of me being home (though I also do think its better, in terms of lower stress, for the kids - DS1 in particular still flips out at the end of a standard Kindergarten day and needs a lot of outdoor time to run off energy and frustration of a whole morning behaving at KiGa, and I'd bet DD would still bring homework home unfinished and have to do it late in the evening, as its Betreuung not Hort).

I am going to make an apt with the Finazampt to see if they can advise me on what the ins and outs of being self employed really are though (thresholds etc) and perhaps the job centre to see if they would subsidise a business/ office German course, as I have heard rumours they might...

Admylin I agree a Tagesrucksac is just a day pack - small comfortable rucksack. Also agree your DS needs to walk the boots in and wear comfortable, well fitting, thickish socks under them - I have vivid memories of really horrendous blisters on DUke of Edinburg award expeditions and wearing slippers to school after the first one because I couldn't get shoes on!

platanos Mon 06-May-13 13:31:08

hupa Hope your weather prediction is wrong wink. Though linzer and I are hoping for rain on Thursday - the soft play place shuts if the weather is nice. And we would then have to picnic on the lay-by of the nearby motorway.

MrTumbles it does not sound easy for you to work to earn at the moment. Those school hours and kita places would make it hard. how does your dh imagine it working? Or has he just not thought it through?

outnumbered how is your ds doing on the new medication? what's with the woman at the austismverein? and your dh's leg? It sounds like you have an awful lot on your plate. Thanks for writing that about your time with your mother. I missed my father's last weeks and days, and I feel sad about that. But reading what you said also made me think about the burden my brother is under as the only child there.

nutella shock at Stammhalter. How is little one doing? Enjoy the cloth nappies! Tis a bit surprising that so few people have heard of them - heavily advertised in the Uk when I had mine. I even had a local nappy service which washed the dirty ones and delivered clean ones - it was not even that expensive.

linzer I am keeping everything crossed for Thursday. I had been at work for one hour this morning when the Kindergarten called to say ds had a fever. He is asleep right now. I hope he is well for Thursday, I shall let you know. It is crazy that you have to pay to work.

admylin I love my waterproof trousers. I love being able to walk in the rain without an umbrella, especially when dc need to get out of the house and let off some steam. Yes, I agree it is hard bringing up dc alone abroad. And not getting time for oneself. I used to wear 2 pairs of socks hiking. And the Compeed Blasenplfasters have been very helpful too.

must go, ds calling...

linzer and platanos i Hope the weather is s€&? for you grin I'm very envious as I would love to meet you both!

Speaking of which, antique lentils and whoever else is near Frankfurt: I have another appointment at the Autismusambulanz on the 14th I think. I have a babysitter organised anyway, as the appt is just for myself, so could possibly meet for a coffee?

platanos yes, it really is a double edged sword. It's difficult for those nearby ad they feel they have to deal with it all by themselves, but also very difficult those away as they can't do anything. But still, overall I think I was the lucky one, able to be very close. my mum ( who thought it as a very bad idea of dh quitting his phd and starting a job in hamburg so that I could be close) told me on numerous occasions how grateful she was for the time and closeness she got to share with me ( who she never ever expected to move back to Germany let alone my hometown)' that she was able to spend lots of quality time itch all our dc. And my dad, who probably would have gone through with his wish to end his life, had we not been there. He is now in a new, but very serious, relationship with a lady I will meet next weekend. I'm quite nervous about it. I'm so happy for my dad as he has been incredibly lonely. But my parents were married for such a long time, and I still miss my mum so much, it will be odd to see him with someone else.

tumbles it's difficult isn't it. If not self employed, the hours one can wrk with small children are so limited. And think we'd have to be REALLY stretched for money for me o accept all three to be cared for am and pm. And that isn't even have a financial reason, as here preschool and after school clubs are free.

admylin I really hope your dh' boss keeps her promises and keeps up good behaviour! How did your dc react to you not moving after all?

Oh no, have just written another essay on ds1 and that stoopid Autismusverein but ave managed to delete it!!! Oh well, lucky you grin

admylin Tue 07-May-13 07:44:49

Linzer do you get any of that back after showing how much you have earned? Sounds an awful lot when I think dh pays around 700€ for health insurance that covers the whole family.

Hupa is the mini klassenfahrt over already? Did ds enjoy it?

MtTumbles maybe your dh was just having one of those money moans because he's fed up with his job, you should offer a swap, he does the household and dc and you go out to work full time grin Is he maybe due another job change? You said he liked to change jobs every couple of years.
Dh moans about money but not because we don't have enough, he's on a higher wage than some of the doctors here but he thinks he should be payed more for what he does and then he starts to moan about money. Problem is, his boss thinks he's moaning because we don't have enough to live on and then she actually tells him his wife should get a job then he wouldn't need to ask for more money shock

platanos how is your ds's fever? Do you have to make up the hours if you have to collect a sick dc during work or are they OK about taking work home? Hope you get your rain on Thursday!

outnumbered hope you sort out all the problems with the verein. Did you manage to sort out that mix up with wording on the jugendamt document?
Well, my dc are so laid back and easy going that they don't mind either way so are quite happy to stay here but were equally happy to move back to Berlin ( I wonder if I should worry about their laid backness sometimes)! I was the only one stressed about it as it was up to me to find a suitable new school and place to live!

So, double socks and compeed plasters have been added to my list and we might manage to find some shoes for ds tomorrow. He has already been warned to mentally prepare for another shopping day!

LinzerTorte Tue 07-May-13 08:40:45

admylin No, I don't get any money back but if I do pay too much, my account is in credit. I've just checked again and I'm actually only paying €600 per quarter for 2013 itself, but an extra €750 per quarter for messing up my tax return in 2009 and 2010. blush It's actually social security rather than just health insurance, so also includes pension contributions (the largest share), accident insurance and Selbständigenvorsorge. However, as I'm earning under the Alleinverdienerabsetzbetrag I'm wondering whether I really need to pay all this or whether I could go back to being insured with DH (obviously I'd lose out on my pension contributions, but who knows whether they'll be worth anything when I come to retire - and I do have a private pension in Germany).
That's a shocking attitude from your DH's boss and the worst excuse for refusing a pay rise I've ever heard!

outnumbered It's a shame we're all spread out so far; you'd have been very welcome to join us otherwise. smile I can understand how strange that must feel to meet your Dad's new partner; you must have very mixed feelings about it.

platanos How's your DS today? At least the weather is still looking good hmm for soft play. I've been trying and failing to come up with anywhere nice nearby for a picnic. grin

MrTumbles Sounds like an appointment with the Finanzamt would be a good idea. Jobs that don't involve putting your child into Hort for longish hours are few and far between here, but self-employment could be an option. Working freelance definitely has its advantages - the flexibility is a huge one (although it all depends on the type of work you do, of course).

hupa Fingers crossed that all the rain comes down here (or rather, stays here) for the bank holiday. grin You're right, I don't want to give up work entirely - and actually, I've calmed down about it all now that I've had my contributions reduced (I wrote and told them my expected earnings and they've reduced my quarterly payment by over €500) and I've realised I'm not paying quite as much as I thought for 2013 after all.

itsMYNutella Tue 07-May-13 21:06:43

Linzer I will get DP to sort out the DVD and post it out to you soon. Glad to hear your friend's op went well. I wish her the best of luck.
I'm also jealous of your meet up with platanos I hope you have the weather you desire on Thursday wink although I now meet up with a few British ladies on Fridays which is fabulous!

admylin have you heard of IWAH? The "International Women's Association of Hannover"? They run the group I go to on Fridays. smile they have other meetings too, although I'm not sure when I'll be able to take advantage of them.
I hope you get everything you need for DS's trip - without too much shopping trauma.
Your DH's boss sounds as bonkers as usual. I hope things are a little more friendly at work for him. Is he still applying for other positions?

Platanos DS is very well. We had our first pekip type thing today. He mostly loved being naked and later being massaged just before getting dressed again. It's tough being a baby! Although he is a total wriggler! And I'm sure it's normal; but often when we meet other babies I realise that mine is a very good looking baby grin

hupa I really hope you're wrong and the sun comes out again on Thursday. DP had totally forgotten that it is another bank holiday... But now we need something to do...hmm

Right, I'm going to go before this becomes another epic post. Thank you all for the birthday wishes grin I really had a great time. The cake is all finished (I sent everyone home with at least one slice of each) but since my cake didn't turn ut how I wanted I am planning to make more cake - you know to practice. I'm telling DP I have to do it in the name of science. What is baking if not a form of scientific experimentation?

platanos Wed 08-May-13 07:40:46

Morning all!

nutella what is pekip? It sounds like fun. And of course your baby is very good looking and will improve as you feed him breast milk fortified with scientifically researched chocolate cake smile.

linzer Good to hear they have reduced your contributions. It all sounds dreadfully complicated. Well done on sorting it all out.

mrtumbles we cross posted. I hope you can get some good advice. And that dh sees how complicated it all is with childcare and with what you want for your dc, and what is best for them.

outnumbered what did they tell your dh about his leg? Hope the meeting with your df's new partner goes okay. It is tough. My mum mentioned some "Manolo" who helped her with the terrace. And I heard myself demanding; "Manolo? who is Manolo?". And she then explained he was a friend's dh. I felt a bit blush at my reaction.

admylin I have 2 weeks a year as Pflegefreistellung. Otherwise I have to make up the hours. I would really llike to work from home, it would be best for me (nobody does my work for me so it piles up). I have been reluctant to ask as working from home is not encouraged, but I know other people do it. dh's boss sounds like a real nasty piece of work. Hope you get ds kitted out - when is it he goes?

I am still home with a sick ds. He is an excellent patient - good tempered even though he has a fever. I have however had to cancel my meet up with linzer sad as rushing round soft play is probably not sensible after spending the week in bed. I so wanted to meet up and having a little private strop. Everybody: please call off the rain dances!

I am getting cabin fever - off to open a window and stick my head out for a while.

admylin Wed 08-May-13 08:17:11

Morning! Dc have a day off today so there is peace in school for the oral Abitur exams. Dh has just left to join the organisation at an international congress being held in Hannover today. His boss is the host so all his mitarbeiter have to greet guests and listen to lectures all day for the next 4 days.

Nutella lol at your dh forgetting the Feiertag, especially as it's his first official Vatertag! He's meant to go off with other fathers and get drunk at the lake I think.
I'veheard of the IWAH but never thought to look into it further. It's be good if they did some sort of teenager meet up to get the older dc involved and speaking English (dd still not speaking English although she's set on moving to the US as soon as she possibly can and only watches youtube videos in English)!

platanos sorry your ds is still ill and you've had to cancel the afternoon with Linzer. So when you've used your 2 weeks Pflegefreistellung do you have to take unpaid leave? Lol at 'who's Monolo'!

We're at the orthodontist today at 2pm then straight on to look at shoes again. Also need 'Turnschuhe die nass werden dürfen'! I don't think that means specially designed to get wet, just either old trainers or light-ish ones.

LinzerTorte Wed 08-May-13 09:24:04

Morning all,

After DD1's less than flattering comments about my hair yesterday, I went to the hairdresser's this morning - where the hairdresser greeted me with the words "you can see what the weather's like from your hair"! Am now feeling slightly more presentable and am also hoping that I look slightly younger grin as the youngish cashier at Billa said tschüß to me today instead of Wiedersehen. grin (Hallo and tschüß are generally only used here with people you would say du to; I don't think a shop assistant has ever said tschüß to me before, although they daringly say "hallo" at H&M.)

admylin I find that English-language activities dry up once you have school-age children; there are either English baby/toddler groups or social activities in the evenings for parents, but nothing in between. (Apart from ridiculously expensive English courses aimed at non-native speakers.) It's great that your DD will only watch YouTube videos in English, though.

platanos We should look at it as postponed rather than cancelled - fingers crossed that we don't have good weather everyone's fit and healthy at the next bank holiday weekend! Glad to hear that your DS is an easy patient (I wish mine was!), but it must still be frustrating for you to have to stay at home. Perhaps we need to skype over a glass of wine instead. wink

Nutella That would be great, I'll PM you my address as I don't think you have it. Thank you. smile

I'd also forgotten about it being Vatertag in Germany tomorrow; I always thought it was a bit strange that men would spend Father's Day going out and getting drunk. Father's Day isn't until June here, but the Austrians don't seem to go in for drinking like the British do.

AntiqueMuppet Wed 08-May-13 18:14:38

Evening all!

Linzer Call the Midwife is on its way to you. I had to laugh at your DD's comments about your hair. If it's any consolation, you can tell the weather from the state of my hair too.

Good luck shoe shopping, admylin. Hope you find what you need.

Get well soon, platanos' DS! I had to laugh at 'Who's Manolo?' too smile

Happy belated birthday, Nutella!

outnumbered I'm not sure I can do the 14th but I'll check and let you know.

How did you get on at the Finanzamt, MrTumbles? I hope they can provide some clarity.

I think Hessen has rain forecast for the bank holiday, hupa......
It haven't checked today though so you never know.

DH has the whole week off, which has really thrown me in terms of what day it is, but it has been nice to have him around. My hay fever seems to be getting worse every year and it completely knocked me out yesterday. Has anyone tried the 'Desensibilisierung' that some doctors offer? FIL mentioned it as an option and I'm thinking of looking into it as I thought I'd picked up something really nasty yesterday until I realised what time of year it is.

DS is really chatty at the moment, which is really sweet, but his favourite word is 'Nein!' Of course, he has to repeat it every 10 seconds or so, just to make sure the message is getting through smile

LentilAsAnything Wed 08-May-13 22:27:17

Checking in quickly. We went away for the weekend, I didn't log on for a few days, lots to catch up on.
Happy belated birthday, Nutella, aka the mother of the gorgeous baby! smile

plat, hope your DS gets better soon.

LT, hope you are happy with your new hair, and feel wonderful! I need a cut, but with only three weeks til we get back to the UK, I am going to wait til then, save on any translation issues.

out, would love to meet up! What time are you likely to be free from? DS has a gym class 2-3, but we are free outside that time. I will have him with me, and he is a busy little tyke, he doesn't really do sitting still for coffee yet. I could try and wear him out at softplay as well as his gym class first though, and hope he sleeps! smile
I hope the meeting with your dad's new partner goes ok for you, I can't imagine how tough that is for you. (((Hugs)))

admylin, sorry to hear your DH's job thing didn't work out, what a lot of effort and headspace. Hope you are all happy to be where you are.

Hello to everyone else, need to get offline soon.

We are fine, managed to sell most of the big items (wardrobe, spare bed, sofas), and still decluttering. Still feel we have a lot of stuff, and feel a bit weighed down with it. I like minimalism, I like feeling free and light ... but I also like nice things! smile

Hi! Just a quick one from me too as I am trying to somehow lessen the chaos before my dad gets here...

lentils my appt is at 1pm, although they are never on time. I would estimate I should be free or leaving the hospital at 3pm latest. Are you on the centre? If the weather is nice we could meet in a park perhaps? Have a little picnic and your ds can run around?

antique If you do happen to be free, it would be lovely to meet you too!

Right better get going. Am super slow today as I woke up with a really stiff neck this morning. It makes you appreciate how lucky I am, as done people are in pain or are very limited on their movement all the time!

Do your dh' all have the Brückentag off work? On any case, have a lovely public holiday everyone smile

LentilAsAnything Thu 09-May-13 20:48:47

Hope your day went well, out.

DS's gym class is in town, we will be done by three, so should be good. As a park and picnic sounds nice!

itsMYNutella Fri 10-May-13 09:38:35

Good morning all.

outnumbered how was it meeting your dad's lady friend? I hope it was ok. It's a very different situation for me but her new man makes her the happiest I've seen her in years. It is good to see her with someone who genuinely cares about & for her.

Is anyone near Dresden? We are going to be there sun- tues. I'm looking forward to the change of scenery. Or does anyone have tips for things to see & do there?

platanos Fri 10-May-13 14:43:48

nutella enjoy the change of scene. I visited Dresden years ago, before children, and just walked around the city....not much help,sorry.

outnumbered hope your neck is better. How was the visit?

lentils well done on selling the big items. Will your stuff all fit in the van now? Have you got a new home sorted in Scotland? It is great that you are going back in summer, and can enjoy that wonderful countryside.

Antique do you take anything for hayfever? Poor you. I live with 3 hayfever sufferers so know it is not pleasant. I don't know anything about the desensibilisierung, but it was advertised all over the place at the allergie ambulatorium that I took ds to. Might be worth a try?

linzer good to hear your hair is sorted. Mine is mad at the moment, I am trying to grow it longer...it has decided to grow UP the way. Or OUT - at strange angles. But not down. The sun was out yesterday, did you notice?!?! Hope we manage to meet up soon - ish!

On skype- we should have a huge skype meet up! Is that even possible? I am not a fan of skype - well, at least not with the dc. They fight over being in the frame, then all want to speak at once, or not at all...I can see how it is great in theory, it just does not work in this house at this stage.

admylin How is the shopping? Did you get the shoes? When I have used my 2 weeks, I can take holiday days, or TOIL as we can work flexibly. Or I get a babysitter and pay her more than I earn (seen on a per hour rate, as I do get social insurance etc paid which the babysitter does not get from me).

DS seems a better thanks. He didn't have a fever yesterday, but slept for most of the morning. He is asleep at the moment, so let's see how long he needs today. Dh is away so we are having a pizza and dvd night tonight. But I would like to get ds out in the sunshine for a little while - he looks a bit peely-wally, poor lad.

Hope there is sun where you are. Have a fun weekend!

LinzerTorte Mon 13-May-13 08:00:54

Morning,

The DC are back at school for their only five-day week this month; as nice as it is to have all these short weeks, I wish they could be spread throughout the year a bit better. Hope everyone had a good weekend and Mother's Day; we went out for breakfast for Mother's Day, then to the Landesmuseum (I'd wanted to go to a Weinerlebniswelt, but the DC weren't as keen - the museum was interesting too, though!).

platanos Yes, I think soft play would have been closed on Thursday so it probably all worked out for the best in the end! We'll be at my ILs next Sunday, but how would Monday be for you? Glad DS is better; is he back at Kiga now?

Nutella Hope you're having a lovely time in Dresden! I haven't been there for 22 years (an ex-boyfriend of mine was at university there), so it's probably all changed since then - the Frauenkirche was still rubble back then, for example. Doesn't Jenny know Dresden? (Although a bit late now, of course.)

outnumbered Hope your neck is better now. Yes, DH gets all the Zwickeltage (as he calls them - think it might be oberösterreichisch) off; in theory, he has to work a couple of minutes extra a day to do so but in practice he does lots of overtime anyway. It's just a shame he doesn't get those extra Tuesdays off that schools seem to like to tack on to bank holiday Mondays (next week for example, after the Pfingstmontag bank holiday).

Lentil Am with you on liking minimalism but also liking nice things! Not an ideal combination, is it? grin It took me years before I started going to the hairdresser's regularly here and I still can't really do "hairdresser talk" - I can never remember what frizzy is in German, for example (something I often need when I'm talking about my hair!).
Hope you and outnumbered enjoy your meet-up tomorrow. smile

Antique The DVD arrived on Friday, thank you - am really looking forward to watching it! We're thinking about trying Hyposensibilisierung for DS's allergies, but he's terrified of injections at the moment so the paed agreed it would be best to wait for a few years - he does say sometimes that he'll have the injections so that we can get a dog hmm but I think it would be more for his dust allergy than his cat allergy.

Hi all! No time to post. Will try to post tonight.

lentils what will we do if it rains or it's really cold? Also, any idea where we could meet. I dont know F at ll, but I'll be coming from the uni hospital. I don't have loads of time so would prefer somewhere not too far/ easyish to find, parking nearby. Too much to ask for? We should swap mobile numbers perhaps via PM perhaps.

Waves to everyone!!!

admylin Mon 13-May-13 11:12:39

Outnumbered good luck at the meeting and hope you and Lentil find somewhere nice to meet.

Linzer back to school here too - both dc were up and ready before I even got out of bed today! Won't last!

platanos hope ds is fully recovered and you got some sun at the weekend. Yes, I got shoes for ds thank goodness and now only need to look for wandersocken and turnschuhe, die nass werden durfen.

Antique how is the hay fever? I'm right in th emiddle of mine, asthma every day. I used to get the nose/eye reactions but now I just get asthma. It's a pain, wheezing like an old chain smoker every night.

Those of you with kindles: ds's kindle for his birthday arrives this week. Can I get him some amazon.de eBooks and later some on anazon.co.uk? I understood so far that I have to register it to an account but will it swap between accounts and if so how often? Has anyone figured that out yet? His gran was thinking of putting him some money on amazon.co.uk but if he can't swap between accounts then he'll have to stick to one I suppose.

Argh just had a phone call to say that my appt for tomorrow has been cancelled. Sorry lentils no idea when my new appt will be, but if you are still around d then, I'd love to meet up.

Am very annoyed about this as we were almost finished with the parent interview thing. And apparently it won't even be with the same doctor, so if the new one will be writing the report at the end, then there is o way he/she will be ble to paint a realistic picture without having seen me and ds2 at the first appointment. angry

angry even

wink

LinzerTorte Mon 13-May-13 12:13:55

outnubered Oh no, how frustrating. What a shame too that your meet-up has had to be postponed; hopefully you'll still be able to meet up with Lentil before she leaves.

admylin My Kindle was automatically registered to my address here as I bought it from Amazon.de, but I was able to switch to the UK Kindle store quite easily - you just need an address in the UK (I used my parents'). I'm not too sure how often you can switch between accounts, though, as I don't plan on changing back to the German Kindle store. When I was looking into it, I read about someone who would switch to the Spanish store whenever he wanted a Spanish book and then switched back, so it's obviously doable; I don't know whether it would be flagged up in the system if you kept changing countries of residence or whether Amazon has more important things to worry about. grin

admylin Mon 13-May-13 12:21:37

Linzer thanks, that's good to know. It'll be on my .de account then for now and we'll see what he wants to put on it later. I've found some great books on th eGerman site to get him going anyway.

outnumbered what a shame about the meeting and hope the new doctor has enough info to help properly. I remember dd's dyslexia report was written up by a different doctor to the one who'd been with her for the 5 or 6 interviews and tests but I presume they had made alot of notes.

admylin Mon 13-May-13 12:26:29

Meant to ask Nutella would you be interested in a student in the evenings? Dh has a colleague (doctor) who wants to improve her English and I've tried to help her but I'm VERY useless at explaining grammar. She stopped coming to me a while back as she was too busy and wants to start again. If she calls would you be interested? She used to come to the house in the evenings for an hour once a week and I only charged her 15€ as I was so ashamed of my lack in teaching skills but she was willing to pay more. We did alot of converstaion and improving a medical research talk that she had to give at a conference.

AntiqueMuppet Mon 13-May-13 13:40:48

When is the big move, lentil? Are you all packed and prepared? Do you have somewhere to live sorted out in Scotland?

outnumbered Sorry to hear your appointment was cancelled. Way a nightmare. I hope it doesn't complicate things too much and that the new doctor can still write the report with the help of the old doctor so that things are as realistic as possible. Fingers crossed. Let me know when you get the date for your new appointment and if you think you'll be available for a coffee afterwards I'll try and keep it free (all depending on whether I can get the car that day.)

Nutella How was Dresden? I've never been but I've heard it's a beautiful city.

Linzer Enjoy the DVDs! My brother just posted a picture of a 'winebulance' on my Facebook page. It's not quite a Weinerlebniswelt but it might make you smile - I'll send it to you...

admylin I'm drugged up to the eyeballs so my hayfever is a bit better, thank you smile I normally just get a sore throat and a blocked nose but it was closer to flu this year. Apparently lots of people are suffering more than normal this year because of the long winter. Asthma sounds even worse though, you poor thing. Do you have anything for it or do you just have to wait it out? It's raining here at the moment so it's not as heftig as last week. Hope it's nice and wet and pollen-free for you this week too.
I think you can get any books for the Kindle that you want from amazon.co.uk from amazon.de too (I've never had a problem finding the ones I want) although I imagine they might be a little more expensive.

My parents mentioned last night that they might come and visit for my 'round' birthday this year, which I'm quite excited about. I've been hinting for a while that they should try and come over but they've been very non-committal about it so far. Fingers crossed! It feels like they're missing out on so much with DS, especially now he's really starting to talk and learning new words every day. 'Nein' is, of course, still the favourite word butcher does sometimes switch to 'no' just for a bit of variety when telling me off, little monkey grin

Hello to everyone I haven't namechecked!

hupa Mon 13-May-13 13:53:09

outnumbered How infuriating. I hope you get a new appointment soon.

admylin I´m another one who is terrible at explaining English grammar.
Our neighbour is thinking of getting a dyslexia diagnosis for his son. He´s now in the 8. Klasse and really struggling. Who was your first port of call when you set about getting the diagnosis for your dd?

Linzer I´m really enjoying all there Feiertage, but like you say, it would be better if they were spread out a bit more evenly.

For those of you with hayfever, dh has a lot of patients who have really been helped by Desensibilisierung. The only problem is remembering to start the treatment earlier enough - by the time Autumn comes around, the symptons have disappeared.

I´ve forgotten who asked, but ds had a great time on his Klassenfahrt. He manged to bring back a Zecke on his neck, but I managed to remove it myself and I keep checking the area, but it looks fine.

LentilAsAnything Mon 13-May-13 14:00:27

Shame not to meet outnumbered, and how frustrating for you re the delayed meeting. Grrr.

We haven't really started packing much, just getting rid of stuff, and selling the big items. The only big items for the van are the mattress and the big screen tv. Hurrah. And the pram and highchair, I suppose they re biggish!
We will be staying with PIL to start with. They've only seen DS for long weekends every few months, so going to cram in some time, I think DS will like it! They sure will. smile They have an empty home in the Outer Hebrides so we can use that too if we start to feel a bit cramped.

LT, I just don't like going to the hairdressers. I hate the chitchat, I'd rather not talk, but then I feel rude, and obliged to talk. There should be a service that advertises hairdressers who don't want to listen to idle chit chat either! And I hardly ever walk away with a cut I am happy with, they usually chop off too much. Though I am really considering going quite short now, though maybe I will wait til I am 40 next year and do it then.

admylin Mon 13-May-13 14:05:25

hupa I went to a child psychologist, had to wait a few months for an appointment then we had a first meeting to discuss what our problems were then dd had to go for 5 appointments to do all the different tests (spelling, reading, dictation, IQ test etc), then an evaluation meeting. They then wrote the report for the Jugendamt (costs 40 or 50€) to see if they would pay for therapy. We had one appointment there too to meet with the Judendamt who then took 2 weeks to decide yes or no. Took ages but was very much worth it. Good luck to your neighbour.

Antique yes, wet here today so less pollen. I have an inhaler to take but I'm taking it to the maximum (and sometimes over) at the moment so not good. We should remind each other to try the Desensibilisierung before it comes round again next year!

Ds just had his first brace taken off - next one goes on in a weeks time so he's going to enjoy having his mouth back for a week. First thing he said was that it's great to not have wires sticking into his skin!

LentilAsAnything Mon 13-May-13 16:21:38

It was the 12th of March that I said I wouldn't vegangelise on here for a month, and I've done two months! smile
So I am gently offering a suggestion for the hayfever sufferers that giving up dairy has a dramatic effect for many people, who notice their symptoms disappear or at least drastically reduce. Feel free to ignore or experiment! smile

hupa Tue 14-May-13 09:22:42

admylin Thanks for the info. We´re going out with them to a Spargel-Buffet at the weekend, so I´ll pass it on then.

We´ve got torrential rain here at the moment. Dd is meant to be going on a Walderlebnistag tomorrow. I think they might be wading through mud at this rate.

Lentil The hairdresser I go to always offers a pile of trashy magazines to read as soon as you sit down. I´ve found that as long as I look engrossed in an article they don´t bother to make small talk. The only problem is if I really do become engrossed in something, I don´t notice that they´ve suddenly started to chop too much off or blow dry it so that I have "big" hair.

LentilAsAnything Tue 14-May-13 11:29:10

smile hupa. Yeah, I just feel rude ignoring them though!

LinzerTorte Tue 14-May-13 11:48:47

Lentil I have the same problem. My last hairdresser was great as she didn't seem that interested in chatting, and I'd get my Kindle out as soon as I sat down. But then she went on maternity leave and the one I have now is really chatty, so I feel quite rude if I get my book out - I usually have it lying on the shelf in front of me, but can't pluck up the courage to pick it up and start reading. blush She's lovely otherwise and I really like the way she does my hair so I don't want to change, but I miss having that time to read!

hupa Hope the weather has improved for your DD's Walderlebnistag; we had torrential rain yesterday evening and last night too, but it's lovely and sunny today.

admylin It's great that the Jugendamt will pay for therapy. They only do so here for hardship cases; mind you, at €65 an hour I think we'll be a hardship case by the end of the year. grin

Antique How exciting about your parents' possible visit. Mine haven't been over for nearly seven years and are also very non-committal whenever we invite them, but I can see it's not the easiest journey when you're in your seventies (it can often take the best part of 24 hours). I'm still waiting desperately for the winebulance, btw. grin

Yes, I think most English-language books are available on Amazon.de too, but are just much more expensive. With the odd exception, I haven't spent much more than a pound on any Kindle books so far. I've just finished reading Winter in Madrid, which I splashed out a couple of pounds on, but it was definitely worth it in the end (although it took me quite a while to get into it).

itsMYNutella Tue 14-May-13 20:53:18

outnumbered sorry to hear about your appointment! Hope it all gets sorted out for you quickly. And good luck with the competitive dryness! smile It sounds like a really good idea.

admylin I'll pm you about the student. I think I'm interested... grin
I hope DS enjoys his birthday and kindle - when is it his birthday?
Do you have everything you need for the camping trip? (Other than shoes - someone mentioned a shop near the opera house called "Al bundy" that does cheap shoes, but I haven't been there so I don't know exactly what they have but I think it's on Georgstr)

Linzer your comment about amazon having better things to do made me smile.

Antique when's your birthday? I turned 30 last year (sad) and my little brother and his girlfriend met us in Berlin & it was a surprise for me. It was fantastic. I told DP he couldn't have organised anything better for me.
They were also the first people I told (apart from my mum, but that was in the phone) that I was pregnantsmile.

I really enjoy going to the hairdresser. I could talk the hind legs off of a donkey wink but I also like to sit quietly and be pampered. Unless I have something specific to talk about. My current hairdresser is really lovely - which reminds me I need a haircut!

Dresden was lovely. Fantastic weather, nice hotel (thank you DP's work), nice town and very lovely scenery. I will bore you all about it once I have put DS into bed. He is currently asleep on me.

itsMYNutella Wed 15-May-13 07:58:14

Good morning all.

Dresden was lovely and I saw loads. The weather was really fantastic. Not too hot, just nice warm sunny weather. DS was very well behaved (even on a 2 hour bus tour) and I carried him most of the time. I paid 22€ for a two day tourist ticket thing. It included a hop on hop off bus tour and some guided tours. I actually ended up with two tours where it was just me and a very informative guide smile definitely worth visiting a city during the week wink.

Definitely one to recommend. Lots of interesting things and rebuilding projects still going on. I would happily go back for another couple of days, I didn't get in the Frauenkirche and I didn't make it round the dairy either so I would at least like to do those.

I was pleased DS also did ok sleeping in the hotel. We havent travelled with him anywhere overnight before so it w a little adventure for all of us. The first night I think he was worn out from so many new things; but he woke (also in the night as usual for a couple of feeds) just before 7 (which is unlike him). The second night he seemed more unsettled but slept well once we got him off to sleep. Then last night he seemed relieved to be home. I wonder what will happen at bedtime tonight...

admylin Wed 15-May-13 08:13:36

Nutella sounds like you had a great trip! Phew, great that you might be interested in the student! I'll message you with details!
Ds's birthday is on the 22nd but he's got a physics exam that day and the day before he gets his braces fixed on so won't be in a very good mood. We're doiong the unthinkable and celebrating at the weekend when he can still eat and is free from revision and physics!
Yes, so far I've got everything on the list except the fleece liner for the sleeping bag but I'm still waiting to find out from one of the more experienced parents if that's optional as his sleeping bag is good for 4° and upwards. Surely in June that should be OK?

Linzer that's alot of money isn't it for the dyslexia training. It is worth it if it has as much success as with dd but still takes a big chunk out of your monthly budget.
I'm going to open the kindle today and compare prices of eBooks. If the books I wanted are cheaper on the UK site then I might as well start on that site. Luckily is doesn't bother ds which language he reads in so English books are OK for him. Dd started the 2nd Hunger Games book in English but decided she'd rather have it in German and has borrowed a German copy from a friend.

hupa hope it's not too wet for your dd's trip. Has she got her wellie boots on?

admylin Wed 15-May-13 08:18:56

Have just checked the prices for the 4 or 5 books I wanted to put on the kindle for ds and some of them are even cheaper on the .de site hmm
They're all in English and most of them are classics. I've never experienced something or anything being cheaper in Germany than in the UK (OK, except food...but otherwise nothing).

AntiqueMuppet Thu 16-May-13 12:20:11

A lot of the classics are free on the Kindle, admylin. what did you put on there for your DS. [nosey]

Glad to hear you enjoyed Dresden, Nutella. Did your DS go down ok inn the evening once you were home? My birthday isn't until the summer but a friend has a 30th coming up at the end of this month and it's got me a bit excited about mine already blush

hupa I know what you mean about getting too distracted and ending up with the dreaded big hair!

I can't complain about my hairdresser! He is English (I didn't go out looking for an English hairdresser, I just sort of ended up with him when my last hairdresser moved to Italy) and is always full of scandalous gossip about people I don't know, which is entertaining enough to pass the gimme. He's also the first hairdresser I've ever had who understands curly hair and isn't obsessed with straightening it and cutting it in a style that only works straight. This is why I've always ended up wearing my hair straight a lot of the time, even though I'd much rather leave it curly.

Linzer Where have you been getting books so cheaply for your Kindle? Do you order from UK Amazon or have you bypassed Amazon and got them from somewhere else? DH always shrieks when the credit card bill comes in and sees books for almost a tenner.

Lentils That's interesting about the dairy. I was all for giving it a go until I realised that I don't really eat much dairy anyway. I never got around to my vegan week in the end but I'm still planning on trying it. I was thinking of getting a vegan cookbook. Is there one you would recommend?

DS isn't sleeping much at night at the moment, which is knackering. (Apologies for stating the blindingly obvious.) He's having a nap now though so I'm having a coffee and watching The West Wing. Th first series was quite cheap on iTunes and it's turned into a hand housework avoidance tactic!

Speaking of sleep, how is your DS2 sleeping, MrTumbles?

AntiqueMuppet Thu 16-May-13 12:21:54

Apologies for the many, many typos. I was far too lazy to proof read before I pressed post.

LinzerTorte Thu 16-May-13 14:07:17

DS has been at home from school today and just seems to want me to read him one book after another, but thankfully one of the neighbours' DC has just called round and they're all out in the garden now so I can give my voice a rest and have a coffee! I did manage to have one cup this morning, but it's difficult to enjoy it when you have someone asking every 30 seconds how long you're going to be (I'd told him I was having a break from the reading while I was drinking it).

Antique I've switched to the UK Kindle site, mainly because they seem to have more bargains (at least as far as English books are concerned). I usually just search the top 100 paid bestsellers as it often seems to include cheap books; there's not usually much I fancy in the top 100 free books, although I did quite enjoy Blood, Sweat and Tea (written by a London paramedic) and have also downloaded War of the Worlds. I also subscribe to the Daily Deal e-mail (and got a free book for doing so); the books are almost always 99p, although I've only ever bought a couple.

admylin I'm amazed at English-language books being cheaper on the German Kindle site! I was wondering how you managed to compare prices, as it no longer lets me see e-book prices on Amazon.de now that I've switched to the UK site, but have just realised I'd probably be able to do so if I logged out of Amazon.

Nutella Your trip to Dresden sounded fab. How's your DS sleeping now? A friend and I had a guided tour all to ourselves at the Brecht-Haus in Berlin, but I found it a bit awkward and wished I could have thought of more questions to ask!

DD2 wants me to revise music theory with her now - she and DD1 have their exam today - so must go. Waves to all!

admylin Thu 16-May-13 16:42:58

Antique I've noticed this vegan book is at the top of the bestseller list here in Germany at the moment 'Vegan for Fit. Die Attila Hildmann 30-Tage-Challenge' - sounds good. Dd wants to do another week too in the summer holidays but first she says she needs a new mixer to make smoothies and she has collected the recipes already. We're looking for one as all I have at the moment is a stick blender!

Most of the classics I put on ds's kindle were slightly cheaper than the same versions on the uk site. Strange. I put On the beach, 1984, Sherlock Holmes collection, a selection of time travel/science fiction books, just to keep him going.

Linzer I noticed that too, why do they not show the prices on the kindle when you browse books? I was looking on the kindle pages on my PC to compare. It does show the price but not in the first list iyswim....anyway, it'll be up to ds now! Hope he doesn't get carried away although dh never really checks his credit card bill, it goes straight in the file when it comes!

LinzerTorte Thu 16-May-13 17:32:19

admylin Yes, it would be much easier if they showed the prices on the first page when you browse books on the Kindle - it takes much longer to have to click through to the description of the book to find out the price. I can't see normally see Kindle prices on the German site at all (just a message saying this book is not available in your country), but have just logged out of Amazon.de and now it's showing them. I think DH has given up asking me to explain every little payment on the credit card (he checks our bank account online); he would probably only question me if I spent about €50 or more!

I've also been thinking about trying to eat a more vegan diet, as I feel a bit hypocritical eating so much dairy when I'm a vegetarian. I've also decided to stop, or at least dramatically cut down on, the amount of meat that I'm cooking for the DC. It feels a bit pointless to be a vegetarian but still to be buying and cooking meat - and it also means that my diet is quite poor as I don't bother cooking extra meals for myself (I'll have something like a boiled egg, slice of pizza or beans on toast in the evening). If we all ate a vegetarian dinner every day, I would definitely have a more varied diet.

LentilAsAnything Fri 17-May-13 11:04:27

Hi, Antique. Great, I hope you feel the results soon! Do be warned some people feel a bit ick straight after giving things up like dairy, gluten, refined sugar etc, but it's just detoxing, and soon they feel great, and then continue to feel great. I don't really have one vegan recipe book to recommend, there are so many! Plus loads of recipes online, especially Pinterest.

admylin, DH and I will be doing juicing and blending once we get back to the UK. We watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, and feel inspired to eat more this way.

Ooh, Linzer, do it! Haha, soon we'll have a majority of vegans on here! smile
If you want a little encouragement to go vegan, or at least reduce your meat and dairy consumption, I can recommend films Fork Over Knives, Vegucated, and Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. All on Netflix. Mainly a health perspective, rather than animal rights.