Saturday, January 19, 2008

New Apartment

Sorry for the delay, but we have been desperately trying to unpack before putting too many photos on, and then there was the situation with the kitchen.

Kitchens in Europe are generally not included when you rent an apartment, one of the reasons IKEA has done so well here. Sometimes you are fortunate, as we were in Paris, and the owners have realized the expense of purchasing a new kitchen every time you move, and so they buy a kitchen, and raise the rent accordingly. You just have to provide all of the appliances.

When I finally saw the apartment in December, the tenants at the time asked if we would like to purchase the cabinets, counter tops, and sink they had installed - at a discount of course. And after going to various kitchen supply companies (and an afternoon at IKEA) we decided it really would be easier to walk in & only have to purchase our appliances, and not kit out the entire room (sometimes waiting up to 3 months for the ordering & installation).

Unfortunately, our 60 min in the apartment, with all of their things still in it, didn't really give us a great look at what was going on. The bottom cabinets are fine, but the countertop was actually breaking apart in one place, and white plastic cabinet doors with white plastic counter tops with a stainless steel tiny sink didn't really do it for us. So we rushed to IKEA, and purchased an island, prefabricated upper cabinets, new counter tops, and a white porcelin sink. In one week we have gone from this:

To this:

Not bad huh? The hole on the far right is for the dishwasher (on backorder). It should come at some point this week...

Friday, January 18, 2008

Sophia reading

Sophia reading
Video sent by moyamz

Sophia is desperate to read! She is not "reading" the book, but has it all memorized - every word, and even knows where to turn the pages!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Sophia nuggets

Sophia's latest obsession is the old Christmas cartoons that were re-issued on DVD this year. She's pretty particular about which shows she watches, favorites being Santa Claus is coming to town, and Frosty the Snowman (the version that made me all weepy as a child).

Last weekend as we were wandering thru the streets of Munich trying to find something important (at the time), Sophia started singing Frosty the Snowman, in the style of Jimmy Durante. Very funny to hear a 3 year old with such an accent!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Photos for Nana

Sophia asked to bring her camera along today to take photos that she could show to Nana. Sophia and I were on our way to the Deutches Museum, a wonder for kids or Engineers of any age. Here are some of the photos she took along the way, including our street, Konigsplats (the large Greek monument structure), and a few spots between us and the central station.

Z update

Sorry for the long silence, but we have been very busy here!
After returning from Seattle last Saturday, we (finally!!!) got the keys to our "real" apartment on Monday morning & the rest of the week has been a whirlwind of furniture & IKEA deliveries. Not to mention a bit of jet lag. Sophia has slipped back into her school schedule with no problem. Honestly I think it was nice for her to have something familiar on the return as we went thru yet another change!
We have spent the weekend putting rooms together, and using the baby's room as storage for the time being. Our office is filled with extra pieces of plastic and cardboard, and extra screws that should have gone into some of the new furniture.
Sophia's room is coming together nicely, although her bed won't be delivered until this week. She is getting all new furniture, as everything she had before will be used for the baby. She is the Princess & the Pea right now, sleeping on a stack of mattresses on the floor.
We have a great, old apartment (photos to come soon I promise!). However, every room slopes in one direction or another. It is most obvious in Sophia's room, where the center of the room feels about 6 inches shorter than the floor at the walls. You can actually see the furniture lean into the center. We tried to pick a bed location for her where she wouldn't roll off every night.
In the meantime, we also have been trying to clean out our temporary apartment. Its amazing how much stuff we can accumulate in 3 1-/2 months of living out of suitcases! It has been 3 car loads, but I think we are finally done. The cleaners come on Tuesday and then we will officially have moved.
Anyway, lots of rest is called for for me tonight so I'll try & do a bigger update later this week.
Happy New Year to everyone