Category archives: fall

Thanksgiving in Berlin

At the last minute I decided a year without hosting a Thanksgiving dinner was just plain sad, and I am so glad I changed my mind.  I am not a big meat eater, and the thought of cooking the whole bird is daunting, so once again we had braised turkey thighs.  My lack of planning ahead meant I had to spend several hours on Friday morning trying to hunt down turkey legs- which surprisingly are not easy to find in Berlin.  Everywhere I went and called said they would be happy to order it for me- to be ready next week.  :-|  Fortunately Rogacki saved the day and had exactly what I needed.   It is always so fun to celebrate with fellow Americans (and Canadian, my friend Alex joined us this year), but my favorite part is sharing the holiday and a bit of American culture with German friends, most of whom have never experienced Thanksgiving.  And hooray for lovely friends to celebrate with and to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving in BerlinThanksgiving in BerlinThanksgiving in Berlin Thanksgiving in BerlinThanksgiving in Berlin

Thanksgiving in Berlin

Someone was REAL pissed to have to stay on the couch while we had dinner, but she was loving the attention from all her new friends. She really is the most spoiled pup, ever. :)

I hope my American friends all had a lovely Thanksgiving, where ever you are!  Now the holiday season has officially begun :) the Christmas Markets in Berlin open today!


It is really starting to look and feel like Autumn around these parts and I am loving it.  I grew up on California’s beautiful central coast, where the weather is pretty much 75 degrees year round and the hills turn green in the winter and brown in the summer – no real seasons to speak of.  Now living somewhere with real seasons, I relish in the changing colors of leaves in fall, the snow in winter, and the warm evenings of summer.  Andreas still laughs at my excitement over falling leaves :)

Last week I got an email from my dad saying he had a last minute business trip and would be spending the next week in Dresden and between his travels around Europe, could spent the weekend with us in Berlin.  We had so much fun exploring new parts of the city with him and watching him play with Hazel made me oh so happy.  My mama and dad call her their “grand-dog” and I think my mama is convinced she is actually part child.

On Saturday we woke up and took a long walk around Mitte, showing off our neighborhood to my dad, afterwards he was my photo assistant/driver and drove me around while I filmed my two models scooting around town on a vespa.  Afterwards we explored the old underground Kindl Brewery in Neukölln and tried some locally made beer at the Privat Brauerei Rollberg which is housed atop the old brewery.  Yesterday we took him to Tempelhof Field where Hazel got to run wild in the dog park and finished the day off at my new favorite restaurant- 3 Schwestern in Kreuzberg.  It was such a great weekend and so nice to get out of our neighborhood and explore some new places!  It is so easy in this city to spend all your time in your own little hood, and I am happy we have Travis Jay arriving this week which will guarantee more exploring in the coming days :)


After a few busy weeks of work and travel, it was so nice to just relax this weekend with my little family and spend as much time away from my computer as possible.  We walked around the neighborhood with Hazel, went to my favorite farmers market in the city, checked out the Berlin Marathon’s finish line*, had delicious coffee and cake at Five Elephant in Kreuzberg and finally got to go on a proper date to celebrate our first year of marriage.  It is really starting to look and feel like Fall around these parts, which something I am welcoming with open arms- I LOVE Autumn!


* I couldn’t help but giggle that one of the sponsors of the event was a beer company, and Andreas told me that a German runners’ trick is to drink an alcohol-free Hefeweizen after a long run to replenish the body.  You learn something new everyday :)  Something about finish lines turns me into a total sap- someday hopefully I will run another half marathon, if only I could convince Andreas to join me…

6 months + wedding film

I woke up to an email from Daniel and Davina this morning with some never-before-seen film shots from our wedding, which was a lovely surprise gift as we celebrated our six month anniversary this weekend.  Don’t you love the soft quality of film?  I love film grain and these photos remind me that I really need to take out my mamiya this week, since I brought it back with me from California and haven’t touched it since.
my hair guru/bff Travis Jay is truly amazing.  If any of you California friends need a fabulous hair colorist/stylist, Travis Jay is amazing re-writing my vows before the ceremony.  did i tell you that I forgot to copy one of them?  So when we said our vows, Andreas had one more than I did.  oops.  That might have been why I was laughing here:
film photos by our wonderful photographers Davina + Daniel
I hope you all had lovely weekends!  It was the most beautiful spring weekend here in Berlin, and while I lugged my camera around with me, sadly I didn’t take any pictures.  BUT we finally made some more progress on our flat, and I finally have my very own desk.  I had been working from the TV cabinet for the last few months and it was certainly not that chic.  Little by little, this apartment feels more and more like home.  :)
If you are not completely sick and tired of our wedding photos, you can check out part I and part II

2011 in photos

I am posting this about a week late, but I had a great time looking through photos from the last year and thought I would share them.  Be warned, this is a very photo-heavy post.  Although I am sure you are probably used to them around here :)

We rang in 2011 with Travis Jay and Randall eating WAY too much delicious food and champagne in Santa Barbara.  Intimate New Year’s celebrations are my absolute fave.

We gave Andreas a proper (and very short) tour of Los Angeles

sent out our save the dates

traveled to Berlin to photograph a story for Matchbook Magazine’s second issue
< celebrated Andreas's 29th birthday in Karlsruhe watching fußball
spent a few lazy afternoons by the river in Strasbourg

took lots and lots of bike rides

sold my car and bought a VESPA!

went to Messdi and drank some schnapps

visited Istanbul and fell in love with the city (again) and wrote a travel story for Matchbook Magazine

we spent our summer exploring new lakes and appreciating our gorgeous region

went to Paris to celebrate Nica & Didier’s wedding

went to Santa Barbara to celebrate Travis and Randall’s wedding.  this was right before I gave my maid of honor speech…. on a stage in front of 150 people.  so so nervous.

I photographed my dear friend Kala’s new baby, Elaia.  She was one week old :)

my girlfriends in San Francisco surprised me with a bachelorette party on a boat!

we fell head over heels for Emmy Lou

watched the Giants crush the Dodgers

enjoyed the glory of summer in the Black Forest.  Late evening swims with our niece and nephew

went to the Titisee for my birthday

we got MARRIED!

explored Provincetown

relished in newlywed bliss

made our annual Faux-giving

freezed in Munich visiting Mary for her birthday.

celebrated our first Christmas together in Germany.  and then moved across the country.

all in all, 2011 was pretty amazing… but I think 2012 might be even better :)

Hope 2012 is off to a great start for you too!


– Cooking is way more fun with bubbles
– We sent our men to the grocery store to pick up a few items and they come home with 3 of everything on the list.  silly boys.
– bride and groom tea towel from my mama
– our men
– nica’s stuffing with a whole lotta butter
– braised turkey thighs have become an expat-thanksgiving tradition.  Cooking a whole bird scares me & they are impossible to find around here.  After 4 years, my German friends think the turkey thighs are a normal part of thanksgiving dinner ;)

Sadly no photos from the finished meal, but I guarantee it was quite a feast.

Just a few silly snaps from our preparations for the second thanksgiving of the week. That’s right, this year we had two thanksgivings.  As someone who almost never eats meat, I definitely got my fill of turkey for the year after last week, and now I am CRAVING vegetables.  The first thanksgiving was spent with an old friend of mine from elementary school who was traveling around Europe with her boyfriend, and invited us to dinner with their friends in Stuttgart.  Our friends Nica and Didier came out from Paris to cook up a giant second Thanksgiving feast for some German friends and in the process we made a huge mess in our little ikea kitchen.  I cannot wait to have an apartment with a dishwasher and kitchen where I don’t have to use the top of the washing machine as counter space.  One more month!!

I realized this was my fifth Thanksgiving living abroad, and even though we had double the thanksgivings, I couldn’t help but feel really homesick this year.  Creating new traditions abroad definitely help, but all the facebook posts of my friends and family back in California together celebrating made me miss them all like crazy.  At least my parents will be here in less than 3 weeks!  I think they might have to fill an entire suitcase with stuff for me and the boy, I might have gone a little overboard buying new winter clothes because I am convinced I will freeze in Berlin.

I hope all of you had a lovely weekend and my American friends enjoyed the holiday!


Lately I have been feeling so incredibly blessed.  With today being Thanksgiving in my homeland, I thought I would share a little list of a few of the many things I am feeling thankful for right now:

my parents coming to visit in 21 days to celebrate the Christmas with us, which will make my first ever Christmas away from California, since we moved there 22 years ago, SO much better.  (although I will probably still cry without my friends)

our new apartment has a dishwasher AND an enormous kitchen  starting my morning off with a yoga class makes for much better days.

the Christmas markets have started!  obviously december is my favorite time of year for this reason alone (oh and maybe also because of a little thing called Christmas)

having friends who make the distance between us seem not so great.  even though we don’t get to see each other or talk as much as we used to, they make the effort to stay a big part of my life.

having TWO thanksgivings this year, or as we have named the expat-thanksgiving, Faux-giving, since we never have all the right ingredients and have now made our own rules.  and traditions.

christmas music.  because it makes Andreas oh so happy.  which makes my heart swell.

finishing a good book, even if it made me cry.  Come to think of it, almost all good books bring me to tears. (nerdy cry baby alert)

that so far, everything relating to our move to Berlin has fallen into place seamlessly.  It all just feels very very right.

waking up next to Andreas every morning and falling asleep next to him every night.  I am not sure how I got so lucky to be able to spend my days with such an incredible man, but I am oh so thankful.  Today marks two months of married life :)

and lastly, for all of you, for reading, commenting and supporting me and this little blog.

what are you thankful for?  I hope all of you stateside are enjoying the holiday however you are celebrating :)

photo taken by me a million years ago in Paris

christmas tunes

Now that Halloween is here, doesn’t that mean it is now acceptable to listen to Christmas music?  It just so happens that I found my match in a man who loves Christmas music more than me* (which I didn’t think was possible) and undoubtedly A Very She & Him Christmas will be on repeat until the new year.

*Andreas was listening to Christmas music on our flight to Boston in September.  Why?  because it makes him happy.  
he is the most adorable man ever.  :)

Happy Halloween!  I hope all of you stateside will enjoy the holiday for me!  We might be attending a Halloween party tonight, but it is really not the same… so many of my costume ideas don’t translate. :(

lace-up obsessed

Fall has definitely arrived here in Germany and it seems overnight it is boot weather again (and freezing).  I am in desperate need of some new fall boots, and it seems my longtime obsession with lace-up boots is still going strong.  I think I might just need a flat and a heeled pair…..  you can never have too many boots, right?

1) Candela Britain Booties   2) Bass Sade Cognac   3) Frye Carson Lace-Up  4) Frye Alexis Lace-Up  5) Frye Paige Lace-Up  6) All Saints Busby Boot

bits of the weekend

 new shoes for fall from our trip to Boston :)
 because Halibut in German is Heilbutt and it makes me giggle (because secretly I am 12)
The Hamburger Fischmarkt was in town, complete with a ship in the middle of the city
Homemade Chai Tea fixins
scenes from a long Saturday walk

And somehow, simply overnight, it is fall.  I love the beginning of a new season, and the start of fall brings with it such beautiful change as the leaves turn yellow and red.  We took a nice long walk into the vineyards of a neighboring village and I am looking forward to lots more exploring on foot before the real cold weather comes our way!
I hope all of you had lovely weekends, both Andreas and I are feeling sick and I am hoping mass quantities of tea and herbal remedies from the apotheke will help fend off whatever bug we have.