Hello 2014! (+ settling in and recent randomness)

January 1, 2014

Bailey takes in Mauerpark You know the old adage 'if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all'? Well, this way of thinking has kept me off blogging and just trying to get through the day-to-day with minimal meltdowns since our move to Berlin. Not really the ideal time of year to be fighting depression, but life doesn't always get you down at the most convenient times, does it?

The move to Berlin has been, to put it mildly, a disaster. Every step of the way - from the movers not showing up to every single shipment of new apartment items on order not being delivered to the 'finished' product of our new apartment, recently renovated with promises of high quality details to the standards of the rent they are charging, proving to be a complete letdown in everything from a paint job that looked like a five-year-old did it to leaky pipes to windows that can't be opened because they have no knobs - has been an uphill battle. Then of course, there are the cigarette butts littering the whole place and the constant smell of a gas leak... Not exactly the Christmas welcome to our new home we had such high hopes for. Add to that my persistent stomach bug for the better part of a week, and it's easy to see why staying positive has been such a challenge.

But! We are in Berlin. Every time we leave our box-filled, disappointment of an apartment, we are pointing into restaurant and shop windows every three steps, ooing and ahhing, making mental notes of where to come back to. I have discovered what I now affectionately refer to as 'our' coffee shop, complete with amazing cakes, an engraved silver cash register hailing from another century and perhaps the best coffee I've had here yet. Dogs and their owners have been some of the nicest and friendliest we've ever encountered, one even pulling out her cell phone to show us a photos of her other dog that looked just like Bailey. Even taking the train next to men that smell as if they've taken a bath in their beer holds a certain charm. Every time we get out, I am reminded: You are in Berlin, and it will only get better.

View from Mauerpark Berlin Berlin kid pushing home Christmas tree in stroller

How could I forget the explosive New Years in the neighborhood, in which our apartment miraculously avoided going up in flames from rockets whizzing by so close we could have reached out and grabbed them.

Berlin NYE fireworks corner
Berlin NYE fireworks neighborhood on fire Berlin NYE fireworks in the sky

So here's to things looking up in the merry new year! (and to finally celebrating Christmas, complete with filled stockings, wrapped presents and the turkey in our freezer anxiously waiting to be cooked, at some point...)

Merry Year and a Happy New Christmas card


  1. I hear you. There's something about the grey days and cold weather that dulls the sheen on a city, on life. It's hard not to get so down. And it sounds like everything that could go wrong, has!
    Here's hoping that after an inauspicious start to your Berlin chapter in 2013, that it will only improve from here.

    I think it's really important to acknowledge when life gets hard, complicated and you feel bad. I relate to that, and I also think that with so many people out there only blogging about the BEST! EVER! TIMES! they're having is bollocks. So keep being real, and I'll keep reading :)

    Happy new year!

    1. Thank you for this, Rebecca. It's so true about what people share - on both ends of the spectrum. I certainly don't want to bring a bunch of negativity here, but I'm glad it's appreciated when I do bring a dose of reality. Just like everyone else, my life is far from perfect. And yes, if there was more sunshine, it could only help things! ;)

  2. I'm so sorry to hear that the move to Berlin has not been going well and that you have to battle the big D at the same time. Hopefully, with time, all things will be fixed and the big D will learn that it is not welcome.

    Keep looking out for those little things that make life good.

    1. Thanks, Meg. I've always been a bit of a glass half empty kind of girl (more as a realist than negativistic, I like to think), so when things just keep hitting me when I'm already down, it's extra tough for me to crawl back up. Lucky for me, Berlin is chock full of those little things - especially in the food department. So I may be 400 pounds soon, but I will be happy!

      Oh, and I'm hoping to visit your city this year, since we are so close now. I'll definitely be coming to you for some recommendations...


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