Freitag, 11. September 2009

Of interest this week, we went to apply for a residence permit for me as a family member of ralf to live here in germany and had a grand time being told i need to take a 600 hour course in german, along with 30 hours of social and cultural learning. so we had to quit the other class i registered for and are waiting to hear back about insurance plans and coverage for me in germany. yipee

laying on the floor reading books i can feel the pressure of the baby and sometimes it moving, especially when ralf plays drums.
everything is so different, and i enjoy it. for example:
the majority of cars look like ones from toy story, maybe especially ours which we have named green eucalyptus in german. the cars here make me want to giggle constantly as i always think i will see the pig and tour barbie driving one, maybe even buz light year or woody themselves.

the windows mostly open from the top inwards rather than the sides, but some as i learned a few days ago can be switched to open from the side with a turn of a lever. ingenious!!

the bells of the village church ring every hour helping to remind you of the time of day. i liked this in france too.

i love the toilets seats and bathroom stalls in germany. they feel so much more comfortable and are more round than oval. the stalls are so much longer, like you actually have a private room, and seem so much stronger.

things i dont like:
you have to pay for most bathrooms out and about, especially frustrating for me as i feel my bladder cant last more than two hours at a time.
you dont get water for free at restaurants. you have to pay for everything. and almost everywhere you are not allowed to BYO. ouch!!

yesterday we climbed to the top of a tower which used to be a military lookout but is now open for hiking around and up looking over the entire region where we are right now.
We went into a small village, one which ralf said had the best and oldest butcher around and had food-ralf a curry wurst and me liver that had been chopped up finely and was in a sauce. fries with mayo is the way to be in germany...very interesting.

We also purchased a mobile USB stick to have internet where ever we are at ALDI a pretty common store. We have found quite a good selection of gluten free things and ralf has done really well, up until last night when noodles were in the soup and we didnt think of it until a few
hours afterwards. oops!
I have been sneezing alot- and have had alot of congestion since we arrived. and ralf got worms some how...uh oh. so he has been eating alot of garlic and seeds from squash trying to get rid of it naturally. but they aren't gone yet.

some photos are attached of recent activities like visiting a castle and and the rhine river valley.
if you need to reach us we can be found by mail and telephone here:

Jessica Linnenkohl + Ralf Sandrock
Rotenhainer Strasse 13
56244 Woelferlingen

+49 2666488
love to all

Castle at Cochem

Montag, 7. September 2009

Here we go!

Given the number of requests to turn this into a blog rather than just emails, i thought now would be the best time to start running with it.
we landed yesterday in germany and were picked up by Rolf, Ralfs father around 8am.
We arrived at his parents house located in a small village way out in the country. pretty much i love it here. I love his family who although they only speak german-a few know some english- have been so welcoming and excited to meet me and see ralf back home. His mother had prepared a lovely brunch and as each brother (2) and sister came in shared the news with the´-this is my pregnant wife! they were all thouroughly shocked yet were so happy too.
I feel i am already having such a positive immersion into the language, his mother is wonderful. i love his parents so much. their eyes have such a beautiful twinkle to them and their attitudes are light and humorous, always looking to make a good joke.
I took a walk this morning to greet the sun and strech and see a little more of where we are. all around there are forests mingled with open farm land. its so beautiful. i took a path up a hill and sat in the glowing sunshine, reveling in the warmth of the area and happiness i feel here.
Only a few things could make it better:
having a place where
-i can fully unpack every box and put things on shelves and organize it all,
-we will stay for more than 6 months
-i can take walks like this mornings every day
-small organic farms, preferably biodynamic
-a (or multiple) goat that i can love and milk and make cheese from soon.

i feel so well, so happy. and while i know so little of the language it really feels ok. when i really need to understand something i can look to the dictionary or ralf. otherwise i take in all the words i hear and am trying to repeat and learn how to speak with his parents.
Ralfs youngest niece spent this afternoon with us after her half day of kindergarten, i alreay love her so much and she hasnt hit an age where she recognizes i dont understand most of what she says so she is one of my best teachers.
all the cars are so much smaller, the roads much more windy and the landscape very green.
we send our love to each of you and thank each of those we were able to share time with in seattle and philly.
peace and joy. and visit soon!