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Sunday
Feb012015

Welcome.

(Photo by Nicola Holtkamp)

Welcome to all the new readers who came here via the feature in the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger. I hope you like it here! 

I was very surprised when editor Hannah Schneider asked me whether she could introduce my little blog in her article. Thank you again for including me, Hannah. I feel like a legit blogger now!

The picture was taken by Nicola Holtkamp for her series "Im Augenblick" and she kindly let me use it even if my interview isn´t even published yet. She and I will share more pictures of this session soonish. Thank you again Nicola, you take the best pictures.
Fun fact: I think this is the very first picture of myself that has ever been posted on this blog! Also: Summer, please come back soon.

I´ll be back in a few days with a regular post. 

Sunday
Jan252015

Postcards from the baltic Sea.

We just got back from a long weekend on Rügen, a rather large island in the Baltic Sea. The weather wasn´t perfect - foggy and quite cold - but we didn´t mind. It is just always so good to be by the sea. I wonder if one lives there, does the joy ever wear off? I doubt it.

The last time we took Ludwig to the sea he was so scared of all the water and wouldn´t even get his paws wet. Not so this time. We had him on a long leash on our first walk and were completely surprised when our dog leapt right into the waves. Huh. He was wet from head to toe and the temperatures were freezing, so basically we went right back into our apartment so he wouldn´t get sick. But first we made a new acquaintance! 

We stayed in Binz which is one of the old seaside resorts. This place is way too crowded for my taste in summer but now in winter it felt just right. 

We stayed in a little apartment with a wonderful view of the beach and the sea. Ludwig was obsessed with the view. We couldn´t get him away from his favorite corner. 

(Everything in this apartment was green and brown and there were so many knick-knacks that were supposed to be decorative. It was...interesting.)

Anyway we didn´t go there for the interior design but for the sea. We took long walks every day and made sure our redhead didn´t go swimming again. He absolutely loved the beach. All the birds, and we even saw some rabbits! He was in heaven. And then the sun came out and we were in heaven, too. 

The End. Happy week everyone!

Sunday
Jan182015

News of the week. 

It´s been that sort of week that was quite ordinary, but come to think of it, there actually were a few noteworthy bits. First of all, Ludwig turned two yesterday! Happy birthday my sweet drooling redhead! We sure love you. He got treats and hugs and kisses all day and frankly I think he was a bit confused about that birthday business. And we learned that there´s another dog in the village who shares the same birthday! What are the odds? 

Also, we´ve had another week of craptastic and very weird January weather - winter storms galore, rain rain rain, very mild temperatures, never ending grey skies etc. But there were those 20 minutes on Wednesday right before another storm rolled in and everything in my garden looked golden and then there was the most beautiful rainbow! So naturally, I ran to get my camera and also went and told my cleaning lady to look out of the window, because, rainbow! And then she looked at me like I was a crazy woman. Ha. But seriously, why would you not get excited about a rainbow? That´s just sad.

I have no clue about photography, exhibit 1: I took this picture and noticed that the auto focus wasn´t working (hence the blur) and then I panicked. My computer died on New Years day (very fitting, I thought) and I had to buy a new one. So right now, I absolutely wouldn´t be able to afford a new camera as well... but thankfully I had just accidentally switched off the auto focus. Duh! I had no idea one could actually do that. I really need to get to know my camera better. (But it still is a nice picture, so.)

Emma is cute, no news here, but look at the floors? This is in our library and we have a situation here. The floors in this room have always been in a bad condition but lately big chunks of wood have started to break out (not pictured here). We now have holes in the floor - nice. Our local carpenter will try to fix this mess for small money but eventually there will be no way around new flooring. Ugh. It´s like they say, there´s always something to fix in a big house. 

Have a happy week!

Sunday
Jan112015

Kitchen shelves, the saga continues.

Let´s talk about... my kitchen shelves! Are you bored yet? Anyway here´s the latest: Over the holidays, we did install new shelves, and it didn´t look right, and then I maybe had a little nervous breakdown. But then I posted a picture on Instagram and you all were nice enough to be, well, nice and make great suggestions and here we are. So much better! Even good, I dare say. 

What we did (after I took the Instagram pic) is raise the upper shelves a few inches which actually made a huge difference. I then tried to hang my beloved cake tins above the sink but it was no good - it looked so cluttered! I feel like this space above the sink needs to be quiet so that the shelves can be a little busier. I have always toyed with the idea of this particular mirror here... and I think it does work. 

The mirror itself is a rather cheap, fake-old thingy but I like the shape and I LOVE how much lights it reflects. That is a very good thing in this very dark kitchen. It is a bit on the small side for this space but I think it´s fine. 

The brackets... I don´t know. They´re ok? I got so used to the more curvy style of the old brackets that now I find myself missing them. They somehow worked well in this kitchen. I have some vague plans to try and DIY brackets in a more traditional style but not in the near future. I keep reminding myself that these are KITCHEN SHELVES and that nobody is going to die when they don´t look 100 percent right. 

So there you go, kitchen shelves 2.0. I still have to fix that cable situation and maybe pare down the items on the shelves a bit, but otherwise I am happy with how things turned out. And now, no more talking about kitchen shelves for a very long time, I promise. Maybe? No really, I promise.

Sunday
Jan042015

2014 in pictures.

Happy new year! Let´s make it a good one. Like every year, I picked one favorite picture from every month of 2014. In January, we had just installed this lovely Morris wallpaper in our bedroom. I still love it! 

Not much happened in February, but my living room looked pretty. 

Same goes for March and my dining room. And apparently I have a thing for yellow tulips! Ha. 

In April, I installed a picture wall in our library. I have a love-hate relationship with those blue chairs and that wall color. I think I really need to try and sew some neutral slipcovers for the chairs so that I can finally move on. 

My favorite picture of Ludwig, taken in May. Oh, redhead.

That rose! I couldn´t get enough of this sight in June (which resulted in three million pictures). This is how it looks after we planted it a mere two years ago. If you need a fast climber, this one is for you (it´s a rambler named Filipes Kiftsgate - a favorite of Vita Sackville-West!).

In mid-July, the walled garden looked just beautiful. This is my favorite garden picture of 2014.

August. This is where I live. Someone pinch me please. 

Beautiful asters in the walled garden in September. 

In October, we went to Cyprus and stayed in the loveliest hotel ever. 

In November, I took my favorite cat picture of 2014 - and this is not even one of our cats! You probably all know silly Kasimir by now, our neighbor´s cat, who prefers to live on our deck pretty much all year long. 

And in December, it snowed! I love this picture of my snowy house. It´s all gone by now though. Fair enough - after Christmas it´s spring, as I always say. 

2012 in pictures.
2013 in pictures.