Blogmas (Day 15) – Christmas Lights in Bern

Hello my supercalifragilisticexpialidocious friends!

If I had to choose one single favourite place in the entire world, I would always say it’s Bern. I loved Auckland and its beaches and I adored Tegucigalpa with all the delicious foods, there’s so many amazing cultural events and parties in Berlin and Hamburg, fantastic Afternoon Tea in London – but I’m nowhere as comfortable and happy as I am in Bern. I always think it’s a tiny bit magical, so tonight I would like to share some of that magic with you lovely folks!
I was initially going to take the photos myself but haven’t really had the time. So instead I chose a few lovely pictures from @bern_pictures which you can easily find on Instagram.

 

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© by Jonathan Liechti
@ilove_Bern (Instagram)
Source: @ilove_bern (Instagram)

I hope you enjoyed that and I’m wishing you happy 10 days until Christmas (Whoop Whoop!).
Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

And of course you should have look at Anna’s blog, too! Anna is cooperating with me this Blogmas season, and I seriously have no idea what she’ll be talking about tonight! Hang out on her blog for a while (as will I) on http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com. She’s better than me! (but don’t leave me, ‘k?)

Blogmas (Day 14) – Birthday Reflections

I know it‘s way past midnight, but I‘ve only just got off celebrating my 23rd birthday! Yaay! I had such a wonderful day and I feel so so blessed and happy and full of cake, and I can‘t wait for the next one to come.

I just looked at my pile of presents and thought about all the things that I got and all the things that I didn‘t get and I realised that maybe this pile of presents isn‘t even that important. All my friends came over for dinner and I didn‘t make enough potatoes and I forgot to buy white wine, but we still had a wonderful time.

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When I look back on my past birthdays I can‘t remember a single bad day. It‘s the one day I get to pick the music and nobody complains about my Christmas/Disney/Backstreet Boys playlist. I can choose bloody Frozen napkins and wear my reindeer antlers, and everybody accepts it without laughing. I always feel like I get to be myself to the absolute fullest on this one day. And when I look back I don‘t remember the presents. Did I get a book or a DVD or chocolates, who knows! But I do remember that I have never been alone and that makes me feel super special! And that‘s the biggest gift, and it‘s not corny because it‘s true. If I could wish for one thing it‘s that there will always be lovely faces around my table on my birthday and that I will always feel as loved.

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Getting older is scary sometimes because we are never quite who we want to be. I haven‘t published a bestselling novel yet, I haven‘t met my future husband yet, I haven‘t even moved out yet – so many things I was sure to have done before turning 20! But here I am, and it‘s just okay. So maybe I‘ll publish a bestseller next year, or the year after. Maybe I won‘t have children until I‘m 30. Maybe I‘ll still be living with my mum in spring. That‘s fine, because there are so many things more that define me and my personal happiness and so long as I‘m not alone and so long as I‘m loved I think I‘m exactly where I‘m supposed to be.

Sorry for the slightly delayed post! Cheers to you all!
Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 13) – Book Shop Stories (Things People Say To Me)

During the festive season I always work in a local book shop which is massive loads of fun. I spend most of my time working at the gift wrapping station, sometimes I’m stood behind the check out, quite often giving useless advice to lost customers (did that lady ever find the restroom? We’ll never know…). I really love my job, it just never gets boring. For today’s post I decided to share some of the things with you that custormers have said to me over the years. Enjoy!

*Me, tearing off a price tag before wrapping the book up.*
Customer: What the heck are you doing?
*I show him the tag.*
Customer: Is this how much it costs in Euros? Why is it so much cheaper in Euros?!
Me: I don‘t know, I don‘t decide those things.
Customer: Well, I have you know that this is a crime!
Me: It sure is.
*I start to pull off another price tag on the other side of the book.*
Customer: What are you doing now?
*Again, I show him the tag.*
Customer: No, no, no, leave that on!
Me: But Sir, you can see the price on this!
Customer: Damn right you can. I want those bastards to know how much I spent on them!

Customer: What book can you recommend for a thirteen year old that doesn‘t like to read?
Me: Diary of a Whimpy Kid is really funny.
Customer: Does it have a deeper moral?
Me: I guess…?
Customer: I‘m going to ask a professional!

Customer: Have you been to Kiel? I met this sweet couple that lives there.
Me: Yes. It‘s very lovely. As is Hamburg.
Customer: I‘ve never been. But I really love Berlin. I go there every year.
Me: Well, Germany is a great country.
Customer: *shudders* Oh no, I don‘t like it at all. The people are just terrible!
Me: Yes, well, I have a lot of family there, so I guess they grew on me.
Customer: See, this would never happen to me, those folks are dreadful!

Customer: *showing me a pink book with hearts and glittery snow flakes on the cover* Do you think a boy would enjoy this, too?
Me: I don‘t see a reason why not, but it does seem to be designed for girls.
Customer: I DON‘T CARE, I WANT HIM TO READ WHATEVER IT IS I‘M GIVING TO HIM!

Customer: I have read almost all of the books you have on crime.
Me: Have you read The Cuckoo‘s Calling?
Customer: NO!
Me: *Suggestively* It‘s by the same author that wrote the Harry Potter series.
Customer: I HATE Harry Potter! Don‘t want to read it, don‘t want to watch it!

Not to mention the guy who got really upset because there was a queue at every single check out counter and we could not, by any means, provide him with a satisfying answer as to why. Or the woman who yelled at me because she «WANTED NO BLOODY CHRISTMAS PAPER, AND THESE ARE CLEARLY SANTA HATS THOSE PENGUINS ARE WEARING!» Completely my fault, I understand. She’s also «NEVER COMING BACK!» All because of me.

I feel very sorry for all the people who had to leave slightly upset because I didn’t laugh at their racist jokes or because my hand slipped while tying a bow. But I’m also insanely grateful for them because they make for a good laugh in the staff room.

I hope this made you laugh too!
Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 12) – My Favourite Christmas Movies

Hellooo!

Now that I have passed most of my exams for the semester, I finally have the time again to watch the occasional Christmas movie. I‘m a big believer in Christmas movies (who‘d have guessed!) and I am very excited to tell you about my favourites!

Three Gifts for Cinderella, 1973

Harry Potter and the Philosopher‘s Stone, 2001

Love Actually, 2003

Rise of the Guardians, 2012

Star Wars, all of them!

The Santa Clause, 1994

Sissi, 1955

Frozen, 2013

Home Alone, 1990

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, 1998

I realise that not all of these movies are strictly speaking Christmas movies. But hey, Star Wars VII is released so close to Christmas, it‘s starting to feel like a pretty damn festive film.

Lots of Love from the Roots of my heart!
xxx

 

Blogmas (Day 11) – A Christmas Story

Hello Lovelies!

For tonight’s post I decided to share a little Christmas story with you. I actually dug one up I wrote a few years back, and I was going to let you read it, but so far I haven’t mustered up the energy to properly edit that shit. So maybe another day.

But here’s one story that makes me smile everytime. The original story is by Toni Lauerer. I translated it from the Bavarian, so I undertook a couple of changes, because no one would understand why the word «Apfent» is funny.

It was three weeks before Christmas, when Dad finally put up the nativitiy set in the living room. Because we begged and got on his nerves, my little sister and I were finally allowed to assist him.

Most nativity sets are boring, but ours happened to be the opposite, because it contained the most awesome characters. Well, it gradually ended up containing them, anyway. It started with me putting the nativity set quite close to the fire that was burning in the oven, because I was worried about Joseph and Baby Jesus catching a cold. But, as it turned out, it was way too hot for them there. Baby Jesus turned all black and Joseph split into a thousand pieces. One of his feet actually landed in mum‘s cookie mixture, and, boy, did she yell at me. Sure, it was not a pretty sight at all. Mum mourned that not even the Saints were save from my actions.

It was a bit sad to see Mary standing there all on her own. So I organised some company for her. Joseph was replaced by Donald Duck. I wanted to use Asterix as Baby Jesus, because he‘s the only figure that is so small it fits in the crib. But mum insisted that Asterix was not fit for the role of Jesus (not even when he was still pooping himself) and that I should leave Baby Jesus as he was. Sure, he was black, but he still looked like Baby Jesus.
Behind Baby Jesus, there were two oxen, a donkey, a hippopotamus and a brontosaurus. I‘d put the hippopotamus and the brontosaurus the because the oxen and the donkey were just really really dull.

On the right hand side of the barn, the Three Wise Men were trudging along.
One of them had fallen down the previous year while dad had been cleaning. Now we had Two Wise Men and One Wise Batman.
Usually, the Wise Men have loads of shit for Baby Jesus, like gold and frankincense and myrrh; ours were carrying a chewing gum paper instead of gold, but it glittered all the same. And one of them was holding onto a Marlboro, because we had no frankincense, but when you light a Marlboro it smells too, so the difference wasn‘t all too grave. Batman had a gun with him. It wasn‘t technically a present for Baby Jesus, but he‘d use it to defend the Holy Family from the dinosaur.

Right behind the Three Wise Men, a couple of red skinned Indians and a very pale looking angel were stood. The angel had lost a foot, and he was now sitting on a motor cycle, so he would not be hurting so much at the arrival of Baby Jesus. He could ride the motor cycle, too, if he wasn‘t too busy flying.

On the barn‘s left hand side, Red Riding Hood was standing. She was carrying a pizza and some wheat for her grandmother. We couldn‘t find a wolf anywhere, so instead, behind the tree, there was a luring calf.

There wasn‘t anything else in our nativity set, but I always felt that was quite enough. In the evening we always turned on the little lights and illuminated the whole scene, which made it even more spectacular. We always sat around it and sang Christmas Carols, and it wasn‘t perfect, but it was us, and that would always be good enough.

Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 10) – Anna’s Ferrero Rocher Cupcakes

Hellooo all you beautiful people reading this!

Sooo, what‘s been happening today? Well, for today‘s post I was supposed to go to Anna‘s house and bake cupcakes with her yesterday. But because it was Tobias‘ birthday and I had no cake I decided to stay at home and leave the cupcake making to Anna. She has sent me the pictures, though, and they look absolutely stunning! I can‘t believe that little twit hasn‘t come by the book shop today to have me try one!

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I will definitely try and make these in some near headed future. If your mouth waters just looking at the photos, then you can actually make them yourself. And I suggest you do, because I‘m starting to believe I may never have known happiness! (on second thought, though, I did make a pretty mean chocolate roulade yesterday!)

Bild 62 Well then, that sounds pretty straight forward! I‘ve been seeing so many gorgeous Christmas recipes online lately and I tend to leave a bunch of comments, promising to try it out very soon – but then I hardly get around to actually do it. Maybe you‘re better than me!

Have a very chocolatey Christmas time!
Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

The original recipe’s from the Hummingbird Bakery. Also, make sure you visit Anna on her blog http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com to say thanks for sharing this beautiful recipe with the rest of the world!

Blogmas (Day 9) – Oh Bother, Little Brother

Part of the reason why I love the Christmas season so much is because there‘s a lot of birthdays to celebrate. Today my baby brother turned 21, he can now legally buy alcohol in the United States. Yuss!

Tobias is one of my favourite people to be around. I think once you‘ve beaten a person up enough times, then all there is left to do is become friends with them. We have stayed up nights on end discussing Doctor Who or watching Harry Potter parodies on Youtube. We once played the Sims together and created a green super smart and incredibly evil baby – actually, I still think that was hilarious of us to do! Not to mention the time we watched Twilight together and commented on the entire movie.

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I really don‘t understand people who refuse to get along with their siblings – Tobias can be utterly useless, I swear, but he‘s so much fun to be around most of the time. Unless he‘s being a stinking bugger, that‘s when I suggest him moving off to live on the moon. And stay there. And stink in his own filth. Yeeah!
But other than that, we laugh a lot. I think we‘ve entered that stage where we‘re in our own little Harnickell Universe. There are so many things we can pee ourselves about laughing that outsiders can only shake their heads at. And yes, that even includes our parents and other siblings. That‘s how hardcore the two of us are!

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We celebrated as a family at my grandmother‘s house where she had a massive dinner prepared and then stuffed us with dessert – I‘d told her I would bring the birthday cake, yet, somehow, we still ended up with two cakes and some sort of home made strawberry cream. It was so unbelievably delicious and I‘m just so so full now. May you, too, have a grandmother whose cooking is as amazingly glorious as mine‘s. 

The nice thing about having a brother is that I never have to worry about how I look when I leave the house to go out with him. I can put on lipstick or I can leave it. He‘ll always tell me I look fat and ugly. He‘s such a charmer!

Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 7) – My December Must-Reads

Oh Happy Day!
I just passed my final exam for this month and the taste of liberty is ever so sweet. This means that I finally get to read bad romance novels again. Excessively. Of course December is a special time to get involved with books – at least for a Christmas fanatic like me! So for today‘s post I decided to share some of my absolute favourites with you! Enjoy!
 

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Harry Potter and the Philosopher‘s Stone (J.K. Rowling)
I know this is not strictly speaking a Christmas novel. But Christmases at Hogwarts always seem to be particularly festive. The armours carol, there‘s a massive dinner and everybody gets the coolest presents. I wanted to have an Invisibility Cloak so badly when I was little!

 

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Shiver (Maggie Stiefvater)
To me Maggie‘s stories are the ultimate books to curl up with on cold winter days. The story is about Sam who turns into a wolf every year when the cold comes. But now he‘s human and Grace, the protagonist, wants to keep him warm and around at all costs. This book absolutely completely ruined me! It‘s that good!

 

Source: www.pinterest.com
Source: http://www.pinterest.com

Let It Snow (Maureen Johnson, John Green & Lauren Myracle)
Now this is all about Christmas. It contains three individual love stories that are all somehow linked, and then there‘s a great finale at the end. It‘s just perfect to get into the Christmas mood. And I laughed. Like, the whole time!

 

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 Christmas with Billy and Me (Giovanna Fletcher)
Can I just say, the reason I enjoy reading Giovanna Fletcher so much is because I like watching her so much. Whenever there‘s a part of the story that I don‘t like I imagine her reading it out loud and it makes it all better. She‘s such a lovable lady! Christmas with Billy and Me is a spin-off from the original Billy and Me in which Sophie, an anxious small town girl, meets Billy, a famous actor. They fall in love and I can promise you some kind of Happy End, because, you know, they have Christmas together in the spin-off. It‘s a gorgeous little story that had me well up in tears.

 

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Hogfather (Terry Pratchett)
Now this is my all time favourite Christmas Story! Very short summary: Death plays Santa Clause. It‘s hilarious, just read it!

 

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The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (C.S. Lewis)
It‘s always winter, but it‘s never Christmas. You have no idea just how many wardrobes I entered, hoping I would somehow find myself in Narnia (I was the most gullible child, I swear!). There is so much to this little book that defines Christmas for me

 

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My True Love Gave To Me (edited by Stephanie Perkins)
My Honduran host brother got me this last year and I have to say it‘s a perfect match. I love the song from which the title derives, I love the cover and I love almost all the authors that contributed their short stories to this gorgeous work.

It‘s only 18 more days until Christmas and I‘m now going to be spending most of my time away from uni working in the book shop. Book shops are such a magical and beautiful place, especially in winter. I actually love this place so much that I still hang out in the shop‘s café during my free time and just read. And if you‘re wondering, I‘ll now be reading Dream a Little Dream by Giovanna Fletcher. Aaaahh, it‘ll be fabulous!

Of course Anna has also created a list of her favourite books to read in December, so make sure you have a look at her blog on www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com. Actually, I can‘t wait, because I limited myself to seven books and I have a zillion books more I could tell you about right now! So, little consolidation: more books on Annas‘s blog!

Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 6) – Saint Nicholas Day

Hello Lovelies!

Today is one of my favourite days in advent – it‘s Saint Nicholas Day!
Something that I love so much about Christmas is the fact that every country celebrates it just slightly differently. In the U.S. Santa doesn‘t come until December 25th, in Eastern European Countries it‘s the 19th, and in Switzerland it‘s the 6th.

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We celebrate this day very thoroughly and with an incredible lot of commission. It is accompanied by the baking of Gritibänze (or Stutenkerl in High German), a type of sweet leavened dough pastry that has the shape of a man. Just this morning I received a picture on Snapchat from my friends‘ flat breakfast – they‘d made penis shaped Gritibänze, but I mean that‘s fair enough, right?

My siblings and I went to my dad‘s house where he and his wive had prepared a wonderful afternoon treat/dinner (I feel really stuffed now!). It was the cosiest event, we had Christmas music playing and the fire was on and my niece was chasing the cat and just so many nice faces to look at. The pastries, of course, were a bit more conventional.

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I so love that this days is as exciting for adults as it is for children. My niece must have met Santa Clause at least three times over the course of the weekend (I‘m happy to be corrected), and my dad‘s wife prepares little goodie bags for all of us. My mum got so excited about my set of reindeer antlers that we put them on our poor dog. It just goes to show that you can‘t always keep your inner child shut up (even if the inner babysitter is doing their very best).

Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

I haven’t talked to Anna all day, so before I go back to studying I’ll definitely check out what she’s been up to today. As should you! If you’ve never been on her blog before, here’s the adress: http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com

Blogmas (Day 5) – A Christmas Cookie Recipe

Aloha Lovelies!

This afternoon my friend Anna came over to my house and together we made extremely magical Christmas Cookies which have turned out really really delicious. The recipe‘s very straight forward and the risk of ruining anything here is extremely low! 

© Anna Herbst
© by Anna Herbst

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© by Anna Herbst
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© by Anna Herbst
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© by Anna Herbst

I just adore cookie cutters in all shapes and sizes, and I get super excited whenever I enter a store that is dedicated to baking (hence my impressive cookie cutter collection). And just now I scratched some icing off my eyebrows. Let it happen.

Lots of Love from the Roots of my Heart!
xxx

For more pictures and stories of our little baking event visit Anna on her blog: http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com.