beach

March / spring break

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On march 3rd, exams were finally over. No more studying, no more desperately trying to understand all the math and statistics, that we’d never seen before. It’s been hard, but we managed to get our best possible outcomes (not that the results were that great).

Since then, I’ve been in Trier and Saarbrücken, living with my parents or Jonas, spending lots of time with my friends, spending a lot of time at the gym, doing shopping trips. Also, I decided to try out, living as a vegan (which is hard, when you’re a meat lover, but it’s been three weeks and I’m starting to enjoy it.)

We also went to the Netherlands and had some great days a at the beach, even though it was too cold to swim. We went for walks, sat in beach cafés, cooked tasty food, played cards at night and got back super relaxed 🙂

I’ll just leave some expressions since there’s not much more to tell 🙂

Love, Kathi  ❤️

 

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week 41/42 / Virginia beach

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The week that Hanna was still here, we spent with shopping, picnics, planes starting over our heads and finally some sleeping, after we hadn’t had slept in during our whole vacation.🙈

We had some nice last couple days and I am really glad she got to come here and spent time with me 🙂

We also needed to say goodbye to our beloved friend Rabea, whose year (or 2)  as an au pair is finished here and she’s going back to Germany. We already miss her and we’re glad that we spent so much time together and will definitely see her again as soon as possible!

After I had dropped her off at the airport and spent the first time alone in my bed again since over a month(!) (since Lydia and Hanna were here right after each other), we packed our stuff on Friday again and went off to go on another vacation (or more like a weekend trip🙈).

My host mum and me picked up the boys right after school and hit the road towards Virginia Beach! We had planned to go camping for the next three days. Let’s see how that turned out:

We got there late at night and needed to set up the tent in the dark, which wasn’t that easy, since American people, whenever they go camping, they don’t just bring air mattresses and a tent. We have a 8-person tent (for the 5 of us) and brought bunkbeds. (yes, you heard right: BUNKBEDS.) Since we got not really lucky with our neighbors, the campground service people moved us somewhere else while we spent the day at the beach, ate pizza and spend the evening at the pool on the campground.

For Sunday there was a tropical storm predicted, so we packed up our stuff, booked a hotel for the night, spend the morning at the beach, the afternoon at the Virginia Aquarium and headed to Newport News that night, where we finally had a comfortable bed again.🙈

When we woke up on Monday morning, Memorial Day, we went for breakfast, spent some time at the Virginia Living Museum and had dinner with my host mum’s sister and her family in Richmond.

We got home late, after a fun, but really exhausting weekend.

Since it was Memorial weekend, the pool season has officially started! We spent a few afternoons this weeks there, since the boys don’t have a lot of homework anymore.

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Summer is finally here! 

We didn’t do much this weekend, though. I was sick on Friday and spent the whole day in bed. On Saturday I had one last cluster meeting and spent about 7 hours a mall with Marie, before we went (once again) to Rabea’s host family’s house, to get to know the new au pair better and see her little host kid again and talk to her host parents, and make sure, that we are still welcome there 🙈

I worked Sunday (the disadvantages of being an au pair) and skyped with some of my loves at home (or in Ukraine).

I guess the next few weeks are not gonna be too exciting, even though they are my last ones. The days that I have left are counted and I can’t wait to finally be back in Germany!

37 more days and I will leave my home here to return to my actual life and home and need to worry about where to go and what to do with my future 😃

But until then, there’s a pool waiting for me and a lot of sunny days here in Virginia 🙂

Love, Kathi ❤️

week 28

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The week started out with my host mum leaving for a work trip, which made me work pretty much the whole day. The boy’s grandfather came, to help, so it wasn’t as bad, but I like it better with my host mum home. (It is not fun to live with 5 men in a house.)

But Wednesday she was back and it all worked out perfectly fine.:)

As always the week wasn’t too exciting and we needed to wait 5 long days for the weekend to finally come.

Friday I was off early and instead of cleaning up my room and doing some organizing, I accidentally took a 3 hour nap and when I got up again, it was already time to go to the airport.

Not to catch a flight this time, though. This time it was to pick someone up. One of the people I haven’t seen in 9 months!

MY SISTER.❤️

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I was so excited and happy to finally have her here again.:)

As she arrived very late, we just went to bed pretty soon, to be able to get up early in the morning.

Saturday morning, we packed the car and drove down to the Virginia Aquarium. We spent a couple hours there before we went to check in in our hotel.

We had a oceanfront room and it was all really neat.

In the evening we went for a little walk on the waterfront, before we had dinner at the attached restaurant of the hotel. where we got fancy food and Jamie even bought me a piece of cake, that was brought by someone singing happy birthday to me. It is not really my birthday yet, but no one really cares about that. As soon as it is only a couple days away.

Afterwards we enjoyed the hot water in the inside and outside pool (yes, we got to swim outside at 3 degrees!)

It powered everyone out, so when we got to bed this night, we were really happy and really tired.:)IMG_3503

 

So we went to bed right away, just to wake up this morning to a beautiful sunrise! It was so beautiful to see the sun rise over the ocean.

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When everyone was ready to go, we went to get breakfast and drove to the boat afterwards, that would be our tour vehicle today.

We drove out for about an hour before we got to see the first whale!

There were a couple Humpback whales swimming around looking for food, so we watched them a  little bit 🙂

 

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Afterwards we went to the Virginia Living Museum, which is a really neat place with only indigenous animals. The kids had a really good time there and it was very interesting 🙂

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We had dinner at my host mum’s sister’s house, where we got to know the new au pair who is a really nice danish girl 🙂

When we finally got home again, we were super tired but also very happy to got to experience another amazing weekend!

I’m so happy my sister is here and I hope the next weekends will be as good as this one was 🙂

 

Love, Kathi ❤️

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

19th week / christmas / New York

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Merry Christmas, everyone!

The boys have been out of school the whole week because of Christmas break, so we spent a lot of time on the playgrounds around and cleaning up the house.

During the week, we saw, that the weather in Virginia Beach would be really good on Christmas Eve, so on the 24th, we got up really early and drove all the way down to the beach, where we spent an amazing day and even got to go into the water, while so many people where already celebrating Christmas. We spent the whole afternoon at the beach, had some pizza afterwards and some Ben and Jerry’s and then took a drive on the boardwalk to see the lights on the beach.😊 It was an incredible day.😍

On Christmas Day, the boys were awake super early, because Santa had decided to stop by and left some presents under the Christmas Tree. Or maybe more than some.😉

It was a huge mess while they all unwrapped the thousands of presents that they got. I guess, they didn’t really get to appreciate everything they got because it was just so much. So when they got my presents, for them it was more like ‘just another present’, which was a little disappointing. But I guess that’s just another cultural thing. Or maybe it’s even a generation thing. Who knows.

The boy’s grandparents came over for dinner (or more like a late lunch) and we had some delicious food and of course, some more presents. (even I got a pretty bracelet from them 😊 )

In the evening, I packed my things for the weekend, picked up Marie and we went off to New York, where we arrived around 4:30am, which was not the best time, but we’re Au Pairs. We choose the cheapest ways.😉

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So we were in this huge city, in the night after Christmas Day and there is nothing to do. NOTHING. And no one. I’ve never seen the Times Square so empty. So we went to get a coffee, took a walk to Central Park, left it again, because there were too many dogs without lieges and Marie had to protect me too many times already. We made a little stop at the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, to sit on the steps just like Blair Waldorf would do it, went on to Nate Archibald’s house and walked down Madison Avenue.😊

We crossed Central Park again to get to the Hotel Empire, where we had a longer break for breakfast and coffee and charging our phones.😊

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me in my new christmas sweater 😀

We talked to a few people there, but they also didn’t know what we could do, so we just walked down the streets, stopped at a few stores without buying anything and made our way towards our hostel where we were able to check in at 3pm. We stopped on our way to get a quick meal at McDonalds (yes, we’re poor, we eat fast food) and managed to be at our hostel around 3:15. Our phones reported 30.000 steps. We were super tired, so we went to our rooms and took a nap (or at least I took one 😃). We only left the room to get some drinks and dinner, before we really went to bed and slept until the next morning. It was loud outside the whole night, but we stayed in 30th street/ 3rd Ave, so there was nothing to complain about 😃

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pretty much our view from the front of our hostel.:) 

The next day, we decided to take the subway down to the Brooklyn bridge, where we couldn’t see much because of some heavy fog that was hanging all over the city. So we just took a quick picture and headed towards the 9/11 Memorial, which is a really impressive and emotional place.

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Afterwards we had some more Starbucks with our breakfast and took the subway uptown again. We did a little shopping, went to the Rockefeller Center to look at the Christmas tree, which wasn’t as big as we expected and made our way back towards Times Square, which was way too full now.🙉

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We stopped at a Diner to get some lunch and then it was already time to go  back to the Bus Terminal, to take our bus back home again.

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We didn’t do much in the city this weekend, but I still had an amazing time 😊

 

I hope you all had happy holidays!

Love, Kathi ❤️

2nd week, last week of summer

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No kid is ever happy to go back to school after summer break. Every parent is. I now understand how totally happy my parents must have been every time school started again.😃

The first weeks of vacation are always great, but when your kids spend 10 weeks almost all the time together, then the last two weeks will be full of fighting. Not because they don’t like each other, but because they get really bored and don’t really know what to do anymore.

We went to the playgrounds and the pool again every day this week and they had enough time to use all their energy, but sometimes that’s not enough… This will change when they go back to school and will have their daily routine again. Hopefully.

On Friday it was ‘back to school day’, which means, we all drove to their school, met all of their teachers, talked to everyone, and they finally got to see some of their friends again. (In America, friendships are based on schools, where the kids go to and since we live far away from school, in another neighborhood, they didn’t meet many of their friends during the whole summer.)

It was an exciting day for them, and the teachers seemed really nice, so the kids will be in good hands this year.😊

The evenings this week were as always… We either had frozen yogurt or went shopping. Or both.😃

big love.❤️
big love.❤️

On Thursday it was Lisa’s birthday, so we had Lasagna and my host mum made a really cake for her, which was both really delicious 😊

Rainbow cake :)
Rainbow cake 😊

And then it was finally there! THE WEEKEND! 😃 (I think that’s what every au pair lives for. Not because we don’t love our kids, but because the weekdays are a lot of work.)

On saturday, we got up at 7, to spend 3 hours in the car. Doesn’t sound like fun, but it was totally worth it. We drove to the Virginia Aquarium, where we spend a few hours looking at sharks, petting stingrays and watching sea turtles and fishes swimming around. It was fun and we learned a lot, the boys really loved it.😊

Virginia Aquarium
Virginia Aquarium
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MEMBER!
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some striped fishes.😃
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a shiny jellyfish 🙂
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Try to be like a turtle. At ease in your own shell.:)
'ready to eat you!'
‘ready to eat you!’
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When seahorses find a mate, they wrap their tails around each other so the tide doesn’t drift them apart. They have that one mate for the rest of their lives. When the mate dies, they do too.

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just keep swimming, swimming, swimming :)
just keep swimming, swimming, swimming 😊
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just a little shark.
No Aquarium without dinosaurs.
No Aquarium without dinosaurs.

After the Aquarium we remembered the real reason for the long journey. THE BEACH. We were at Virginia beach, the weather was great (although the sun wasn’t shining we had 29°/86° ) and the water was really nice 😊

Virginia Beach :)
Virginia Beach 😊
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Life is better at the beach. 😊

On Sunday I slept in, enjoyed my last morning, before I will need to start working tomorrow morning at 6.

At 2 pm, I met with some au pairs at the Great Falls Park and we had a nice picnic and enjoyed the view on the falls afterwards. I had a good time and I’m sure I’m gonna see the girls again 😊

Great Falls Park
Great Falls Park ❤️
au pairs I got to meet :)
au pairs I got to meet 😊

In the evening I had a little meeting with my community counselor, to get to know each other. She is a really nice woman and I look forward to having monthly meetings with her and the other girls.😊

That’s it for this week.😊 And now I really need to go to bed, my days start early and I need some sleep.😃

Love, Kathi.❤️