Quickly assess my favourite projects via pinterest!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Homemade bubble tea

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I am a HUGE lover of bubble tea.
Yes, I am.
I know people claim it´s an artificial, unhealthy drink that contains blablabla and can cause blablabla. 
But.
I loved that little store we had in our hometown. It was run by a friendly, chinese family that once even helped me out when I was babysitting a three year old Couchsurfer-kid from Taiwan. I loved the coconut-earl grey tea mixture, so sugary I could feel it stain my teeth, the gluey Tapioca bubbles, and I loved stopping there on my way back from school regularly, almost daily, until they went insolvent. Which happened after about three months. Apparently, having me as their sole customer wasn´t enough.

Ever since they closed their shop I´ve missed their delicious products and tried to copy them - and I´m glad to announce I finally succeeded.

The key - bubbles, of course :)
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It took me a while to figure out I can get them on amazon - I should have realized that earlier, really!

It is indeed interesting how they are boiled, and evolve from light brown and hard to black and soft.
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As for the tea - mine and Eva´s are Earl Grey tea, with coconut milk, lots of sugar and crushed ice, while the version for the little ones it crushed mango, crushed banana, honey and oranges juice. You can pretty much just pour your favourite drink over the bubbles - as long as it´s nice and sweet and chilled.

Music:

I must admit I´m tempted to post Colbie Caillat´s Bubbly, just because I always love when the music fits the post, but really - I´m so, so over that song, and I guess, so are you. Better have some JM instead :)

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The bees are here!

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We did it - we brought our two tribes - 120.000 bees - home with us, on a three hour car ride with three kids in the back(Eva spent the weekend with her friend). And it wasn´t nearly as complicated as I had feared, rather the contrary.

The guy who sold us our bees was a friendly guy of russian origin, with a fun accent and very open. He has around 120 tribes, but he wants to step down a notch, so he can spend more time with his grandkids. His many, many tribes are scattered all over the land, so he took us to this unbelievably gorgeous place:
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Our two tribes waited for us right behind this beauty.

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We inspected them, and they seemed lively and healthy enough, so we began moving the frames from his boxes into ours. That made the bees a tad fuzzy, but we´ve got Buckfast bees, who are very friendly, and we were all wearing proper gear, so no harm was done.
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After that, we went for a walk, and spent a while chatting about life with the nice guy who sold the bees, standing in the sunset while the kids dipped their feet in the icy creek, trying to pass an hour, so the bees would have time to properly settle in their new environment. See, the working bees go wherever their queen is. By transporting the frames - with their queen on it -  into a new box, we sort of forced them to move, and it took about an hour until they all crawled into their new home.

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Almost there - look, we can allready begin to wrap them up :)

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Before this endeavour, I admit I had some respect of the idea spending 3 hours in one small car with 120000 bees and three kids, but look, it went really smooth. The bees sat in their boxes, patiently aiting to be let out again, and we all arrived home savely. It was pitch dark when we came home, and when we carried our ladies up to the pallet which is now their new home. During the day, they are humming, oh, how they are humming!
It sounds like sitting next to a huge, smoothly running engine sitting there in the grass next to them. Tonight, we´re adding the second story on their homes - the honeyspace. I sincerely hope the ants keep apart from them.  

As for our other animals: 
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They seem to be adjusting just fine - and finally, I get to show you a picture of Svetlana, who was still really shy last week. Well, she isn´t anymore :)
They are all interested in everything we show them, they like picking at Eva´s shoelaces or Mehmet and Miro´s Playmobil people, and they are as curious about us as we are about them. 

They´ve given us 7 eggs this week: 
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The 3 small ones are from our chicks, the other ones are  store-bought - you can see a clear difference in size - our eggs are much cuter :) The other four went into this morning´s breakfast - the first scrambled eggs from our backyard ever - what a feast!

I still need to work a little - I need to prepare the easter treasure hunt for the kids at school. I´ve got a nasty cold and I´m much rather in the mood to snuggle up with my boys and the new 3 ??? volume - or at least sit behind my sewing machine. Next week is going to be so exhausting - I´ll really have a lot of work, and this cold makes me tired allready. 
But hey, the good thing is - after this week, we can look forward to TWO FULL FREE WEEKS with no school whatsoever, with time to sleep in and to write and to craft and sew and watch the chicks and bees and cook some syrup. Man, am I looking forward to that!!!

Music: 

For a busy week I need some Mr. A-Z  - and just in case you don´t feel patient enought to wait for the screaming to end - the song starts around 1.40 :)

Friday, April 4, 2014

Want some sweets?

Look what Ronnie made for her two cousins:
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They look yummy, don´t they?

Well... they are made out of plaster of paris, as toy sweets - an easter present for two little girls, to play-pretend sell, buy and enjoy.
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Ronnie simply put some plaster of paris into chocolate molds...

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and then artfully painted all of them.

And aren´t they sweet? :)

Music:

Okay, I promise this is the last "Talk dirty to me" cover I´ll blog. But isn´t it amazing how one song can have so many different faces? And I didn´t even like it, in fact, I find the original quite annoying, but still, I´m fascinated by the way all those artists make it their own.If you´ve missed Tyler Ward´s garage cover of this, or the Postmodern Jukebox cover, well, check out my last two posts, you´ll find them there, and they are so worth a listen :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Let the season...

...begin again:
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Our first strawberry juice/jam session of 2014.

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Let the cooking begin :)

Music:

Remember that terrific Klezmer song I posted two days ago? Well, check this one out, as well :)

Monday, March 31, 2014

The chicks.

Voila:
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Our newest household additions - Ludmilla, Svetlana and Angela!

Well - Svetlana´s a bit shy. I couldn´t convince her to pose for me. Neither cold Mehmet, who might be their official star photographer.
He spends a lot of time trying to get good portrait shots of them, and I think he´s pretty succesfull:
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This is Ludmilla...

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...and this is Angie. Named after the german chancellor, because she apparently is the bossiest of our chicken, and also her feathers happen to be black, which also is the color of the conservative party in my country.

As I said - Svetlana preferes hanging out in the nest - but she´s the only one who laid eggs so far. 

On Saturday, really, really early, we got up and went off to the poultry market. It was a lot smaller than we had expected. Also, we didn´t feel like the animals were treated really nicely - there was no customer service whatsoever, no time for questions or advice, and my kids were all open-mouthed shocked when the vendor grabbed the chicken by the legs. How we picked our chicken:
"Ehm... I guess..."
"Hurry!"
"Okay, let´s take - ehm... the black one, the brown one and the berber."
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And that was it. Off to the cardboard box, hand over 20 Euros, and now we are officially the owners of three chicken.

Well, it´s a good thing we now know plenty of people who own chicken to give us tons of helpful tips, and it´s a good thing we adopted the three ladies, that now joyfully cluck in our garden. It really is a pleasure to watch them, and listen to them, and ponder about their different personalities.
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 It also is a pleasure to turn dinner into a picknick next to the chicken fence, while the sun is going down, and all kids cuddle up on blankets and munch on pizza as they watch the chicks interact.

I know it will fade over time, but right now, my kids really love watching them.
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I do, too. 

And you should hear the screams of joy over the first egg:




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Neither Tim nor I ever had chicken before, but I guess, sometimes you´ve just got to do things :)

Music:

My new favourite band!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sunny Sales

Now my blogtitle sounds like some stupid add-campaign, though all I wanted to do was show off the pictures of my gorgeous kids selling stuff on a fleamarket :)

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We spent a day in the bright sun, selling stuff we´d outgrown - toys and clothes and old bikes. We didn´t take a lot of money for our things - we believe it´s a much bigger pleasure to see someone head off happily with your old stuff than having a few Euros more.
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Also we wanted to clean out our garage, which we succesfully achieved - we sold 5 small bikes to an afghanian granddad who came really early in the morning, we saw a tiny one year old joyfully drive away on Mehmet´s old green car, and even sold Eva´s blue ceiling chair to one of my students:

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And we had icecream:
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What I love the most about such events is - you get to meet everybody. Literary, everybody. Students and friends and colleagues, and neighbours and people you know from the bus. And everybody stops for a chat or brings coffee, sneaks a cigarrette or lends you a chair. And there even is a parking area for bikes:
 photo DSCF7033_zps9e52fc67.jpgI I love this atmosphere, I absolutely do. Mehmet and Miro re-invested all of the money the earned in "new" toys they are now enjoying in their - now much spacier - rooms, Eva got herself that awesome red dress you see her wearing, and Ronnie and I earned our money to spend on the fabric fair - which also happened to be today.

These are my finds:
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The red fabric is from Japan, and I intend to sew some baggy beach pants form it, with a matching purse from the oil cloth. I´m looking forward to that - as soon as I finish the skirt project I´m currently working on.

My photo of the day, though... that´s this one:
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...Ronnie between a rainbow of ribbons. I don´t get how she always manages to look so damn photogenic everytime I get my camera out - she always has unbrushed hair and clothes that are too small and socks that don´t match, and usually there´s at least one smudge of dirt somewhere on her, or some plants sticking out of her sweater. But when I take a picture of her... somehow she always pulls it off. 

Music.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Chicken Coop and the French Exchange Student

Look:
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Our chicken coop!

Uninahbited for the moment, and we still need to make a larger fence around it, for our chicks to roam in freely, and proof it against predators, but then, in around two weeks, our chicken will move in!

Ronja and Tim assembled it...
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Miro tested it...
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And I made it ours by painting it!
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And while we were in the garden anyway, Tim began his project pond - with the help of gazillions varying children, who thoroughly enjoyed being allowed to dig a huge hole into our garden, scraping up all the earthworms and planning to did until they reach the middle of the planet. So we´ve got warm water in our garden.
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Change of topic: This week we had an exchange student from France at our house.

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(They are all chewing on the French violet bon bons...)


I immediatly liked him - he looked like one of our kids, he ate everything I cooked and politely praised my cooking abilities, he never complained about our mess and was sweet with the little ones. Also, he had a great taste in music and liked Harry Potter - he pretty much was one of ours :).

For Eva, however, it was a little tough in the beginning - he´s male, and, oh boy, how is one supposed to have a conversation with a teenage boy when one is a teenage girl? Soooo awkward :)

After a few rounds of Uno, they got the hang of it - and from then it was giggling and teasing and very cute fun, and I loved to listen to their conversations - and no, they didn´t use a single word of English!
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So... it was quite a sweet week, and now I´m off to cook some dinner... my kids are allready cirling over the peanut butter pie I made this afternoon, but I told them it´s for dessert, and they can hardly wait :)

Music:

I´ve been listening to JM the whole weekend - I even took my laptop outside when I painted the chicken coop :) I had such a huge crush on him a couple of years ago... and then simply forgot. His music - from those days - is fantastic beyond words, and it was pretty hard to pick a song for the week. I suppose I will post a few more with the coming entries :)