Happy 35th Wedding Anniversary



Wedding Cake

Wedding Cake

Yes, you read it right. My hubby and I married today at 6 in the early morning in the Philippines 35 years ago. It was an event in our small town. I think I was the second Filipina in our town who got married to a German. The catholic church was full of people I did not know of besides  my relatives and friends. The priest who married us was a dutch priest who was our town priest and was living more years in our country.

 

How was the marriage ceremony and the reception  at that time?

Well, it was a simple wedding ceremony but with plenty of viewers as it was not common at that time to marry a foreigner. They wanted to see  my hubby who was well-built, tall and a white complexion. He felt like he was an alien at that time and I felt so disturbed by the crowd who came to our wedding ceremony. I was a shy 20 years old girl back then. After the ceremony we drove in the car which was owned by my religion teacher who became one of our godparents. The reception was held at home.

 

When we arrived home, we had to drink something from the herbal drink that an old family member had given us. We were not allowed to get inside the house without drinking that drink. I did not know what was in it but my hubby and I had to drink it as it was an old marriage tradition in our country. I wonder now what Nang Lucia had put in our drink. Maybe something to make our marriage long and successful? I couldn´t ask her now as she passed away 2 years ago.

 

The reception was at home in our wooden house with nipa roof. The relatives and some friends were helping my parents to prepare the food for the celebration. They had to cook the food a few hours before the celebration, in our small kitchen. Some were cooking outside the house. As I can remember, plenty of the “guests” were not even invited but they came and brought some people with them.  It was  common  before to have people coming to any wedding event without having an invitation.  No, they did not bring gifts. Only some of our close relatives were giving us gifts for the wedding.  There was a dance in our living room where some guests were pinning money on my wedding dress. Of course not so plenty because they thought my hubby had enough in his country.

 

The wedding celebration was a successful one and I was not able to thank those people who helped my parents. For them, it was a pleasure to help. Filipino families are always helping each other. Through thick and thin.

 

I am thankful to God for all the blessings that my hubby and I have received. Thankful for all the trials we have mastered in life. I hope we will stay together healthy til the end of our lives. Thanks for reading.

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts




Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Food and tagged , , by with 18 comments.

Busy Saturday Expat Life

1st Holy Communion Cake for Angelo baked by the author.

1st Holy Communion Cake for Angelo baked by the author yesterday, 23.04.2016.

Hello Guys! It´s almost midnight here where I am. I am tired but I want to write one post before I will go to bed. This Saturday was a busy day for me. My hubby and I went to the Asian shop after breakfast and you know what? We have met my fellow countryman who came from the same town where I came from in the Philippines. We even have the same high school alma mater and I know his family there. Wow! The world is really getting small. Of course I know my countryman but we have not seen for ages although he and his family live for around 40 kilometers away where I live here in Germany. We have talked a lot in the Asian shop before we said goodbye. Maybe we will see each other in our hometown next time. LOL!

 

Shopping in an Asian shop on Saturday was  very stressful. There were plenty of Asians shopping for the food that we couldn´t get somewhere else. I was able to buy Filipino food like Pancit and Bihon noodles, coconut milk powder, sweet and sour sauce, Kangkong (water spinach) lemongrass and a pack of spring roll wrappers. I am planning to make spring rolls when I have visitors next month. I wanted to buy bitter melon or bitter gourd and soybeans but those veggies were already gone. Plenty of customers bought those veggies before I came. I just bought frozen bitter gourd so my hubby could try how it tastes.

 

After drinking my mug of creamy tea this afternoon, I started baking and making some fondant decorations for decorating the 1st communion cake. Before I have finished decorating, my friend came with her son and cousin. I closed the door in the living room where I decorated the cake because I didn´t want them to see it yet. My friend’s son might tell his brother, the celebrant, how the communion cake looked like. I want to surprise them. The Schwarzwäldertorte (black forest cake) was done too but I have not put the cherries deco yet. I did not take a photo of the cakes  as it is dark. I will do it tomorrow. So good night Guys. It was a long day for me. Tomorrow will be a long day as well. Thanks for reading.

 

P.S. Updated the post today, 24.04.2016 and added the photos of the cakes.

Copyrights 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts

Schwarzwäldertorte aka Black Forest Cake baked by the author yesterday.

Schwarzwäldertorte aka Black Forest Cake baked by the author yesterday, 23.04.2016.


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Food, Shopping and tagged , , , by with 4 comments.

What A Beautiful Day!

Hazelnut Cake

Hazelnut Cake

Hello Guys! How is  your day? We have a beautiful day. I am free from work for a few days and I can write more often as I can. I hope I will achieve my limit of 150 points a day. I hope I will be having ideas what to write.

 

Today is the birthday of my wonderful, handsome and responsible adult son. I made a birthday cake for him last night and have just finished decorating it today. I baked Hazelnut cake and decorated it with chocolate glaze, coconut white and brown “Schoko Küsse” (chocolate kisses) and some white and brown chocolate sprinkles. I have been baking this haselnut cake for more than 2 decades. When this cake is older than 3 days, it smells so good because of the Jamaican rum aroma that I add on it. I have not baked this cake for I think 2 years and now I can´t wait to eat a slice of this cake.

 

This evening I will make some fondant crosses for the communion cake for the son of my Filipina friend. I will make some other fondant decorations too like roses and leaves for other cakes that I have to bake. I know this costs me a lot of time but you know, I get some ideas what to write when I am baking and creating cake decorations. I´ll show you later what I have made. I hope the outcome of my creativity will look good.

 

What about you? What are you up to today? What inspire you in writing?

 

There are many things I want to do these few days besides writing. I have to pack 2 Balikbayan boxes for sending to my home country Philippines. I have to buy some canned goods, dog food for Angus and some cake ingredients as well as I will need them for making German cakes like Schwarzwäldertorte (Black Forest cake) when I live for a few months in my home in the Philippines. I hope I will be able to achieve my goal.

 

So, thank you guys for reading my expat life post. Have a great day to all of you. God bless.

Copyrights 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Food and tagged , , by with 12 comments.

Where To Hide Easter Eggs At Home

Easter Decoration

Easter Decoration by Thelma Alberts

Easter season is a hunting season not only for the adults but most especially for the kids. Do you do Easter hunting with your kids? Do you know that as an adult, you can do Easter hunting as well? Have you tried that as a kid or as an adult? Did you love it? Too many questions that only you can answer.

 

Here in  Germany, the resurrection of Christ from the dead is more celebrated than the Karfreitag (Good Friday), the day Jesus Christ was crucified. The Easter Sunday is the resurrection day but Easter Monday is also celebrated. The time to bond with the family and to rejoice the resurrection of Christ. The time for Easter eggs and Easter hunting at home, in the park and some other families do it in the forest.

 

The last time I have done my Easter hunting was when I was in my home country Philippines, 2 years ago. It was me who introduced this fun activity to my relatives especially to my small nieces and nephews. I did not color the eggs though I organized Easter hunting in my tropical garden. As I did not have Easter eggs bought from the supermarkets (nobody sold Easter eggs in our place in the Philippines), I was creative and bought some small sachets of candies, chocolates and other small size packed snacks Pinoy kids were fond of eating. It was the first time my small relatives experienced Easter hunting and I saw in their faces how happy they were. It was worth my effort to see their happy faces.

 

Where To Hide Easter Eggs At Home:

  1. In the living room: (a) inside the writing desk drawer  (b) in between the books (c) on the flower pots camouflage in the color of the soil  (d) behind the stereo sound system (e) behind the sofa or couch (f)behind your computer (g) inside the flower vase covered with some knitting materials
  2. In the kitchen: (a) in the fridge inside the vegetable compartment (b) in some cooking pots c) on the herb pots covered with the leaves of the herbs (d) inside the rice storage  e)inside the cold oven or microwave ( f) inside or hidden in the kitchen utensils holder
  3. In the bedroom: (a) clothes cupboard  (b) inside the pillows  (c) behind the flower pots on the windowsill
  4. In the hallway: (a) inside the umbrella holder (b) inside your shoes and shoes cupboards (c) hang it on the key holder

 

These are only some of the hiding places in your home. You can either hide chocolates, colored boiled eggs, painted eggs, Easter candies, Easter bunnies and any Easter toys your kids might love. DON´T FORGET! Remember where you hide the chocolates. You might forget it until the next Easter season. Enjoy Easter hunting!

 

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Easter Celebration, Expat Life, Food, Tips and How To and tagged , , by with 10 comments.

Easter Time in Germany

Easter Decorations

Easter Decorations

OMG! I have just seen in my calendar that in a few weeks time, it´s Easter again. Do you celebrate Easter in your country? Are you Christian? Do you do anything for Easter celebration? Good Friday is on March 25 this year 2016. We will be having a long weekend, that is if we don´t have to work on Saturday this Easter. We also have a free Monday which is Easter Monday. So, that will be 4 days free. We might be having visitors on one of those Easter days. Coffee drinking and cakes eating. Maybe a dinner as well. We´ll see.

 

Here in Germany, there´s no work on Good Friday. Churches will be having Mass but not everybody will be going to church. The shops are closed on Good Friday and Easter Monday in Germany.  Good Friday is Fish Day and I am sure some of the Germans will be going to the neighbouring country Holland to go shopping and buy fish in many varieties. Mostly fried in the fritteuse. Well, the shops are open on Saturday after the Good Friday. Germans will be buying their last minute Easter gifts and meal preparation ingredients for the Easter Sunday and Easter Monday meals.

 

Ops! I still have to decorate the house for Easter. I still have old eggs decorations to be hang in the living room. Maybe I will bake an Easter cake if we have visitors for one of those Easter days. I still don´t know. I might bake an Easter bread as well. I still have Santa Claus chocolates here and I will be using these for making the glaze of the cake. I have already seen some gardens nearby decorated with colorful Easter decorations. The decorations are hanging on a beautiful plant. Really looks awesome.

 

BTW, do you hide Easter chocolate eggs in your house, in your garden or in the forest for your Easter hunting? That would be fun. My hubby and I have done that before when our son was still small and it was always fun hiding the chocolates and seeing the face of our son when he found one. Sometimes we hide the Easter eggs in my sons shoes and when he put them on, they were spoilt. LOL! I love remembering those days.

 

Enjoy your Easter Celebration! Thanks for reading.

 

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Easter Celebration, Expat Life, Food and tagged , by with 8 comments.

Dining At The New Chinese Restaurant Nearby

Chinese Restaurant

Chinese Restaurant

Are you fond of visiting a Chinese restaurant? Me, not so much. Maybe that is because I am an Asian and I know how to cook Asian food. Besides that, we seldom eat out and I always want to eat something Italian or German food in a restaurant for a change. Food which I seldom cook at home because of too much work for only 2 persons eating the food.

 

Yesterday was a special day. Not because it was Valentine´s Day but because my hubby had ordered for the first time, a Valentine´s bouquet of flowers from a flower shop in the city and it was delivered while I was still in bed. This was the first time I got something for Valentines as that day was just a normal day for us. Of course I got flowers before but on my birthdays and for our wedding anniversaries. I think writing too much about Valentines in my blogs and in our PILYA BLOG MAGAZINE motivated him to buy flowers this time. LOL! He really surprised me. Thank you hubby.

 

Anyway, we went for our dinner to the Chinese restaurant nearby. We planned it for weeks now to try if it´s good for a celebration that we are planning to make in a few months time. We were hungry but we did not go for a buffet dinner but for A la Carte. I was careful this time as the last 2 times, I had stomach trouble after eating in a Chinese restaurants buffet. Maybe I have eaten too much or the food that was served in the buffet was already spoilt. Either way.

 

At first we were told that there was no table for us because we have not called for reservation and so I told the old man at  the reception that I just wanted to order then for take home but then a woman server told that man that there were 2 tables free and so we dined in. We ordered jasmine tea, beer, wantan soups, pork chopsuey and fried shrimps with vegetables.  The food was good for our hungry mouths. Nothing else. There was no AHA or WOW moment when eating this food. Nevertheless, we enjoyed our dinner. It was a special day, anyway.

 

Do you want to learn how to cook Chinese food? Here´s the Amazon link. Thanks for reading.

 

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts

 


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Food and tagged , by with 13 comments.

Happy Valentine´s Day 2016!

My Valentine´s Day Cake

My Valentine´s Day Cake

Happy Valentine´s Day to all of you Guys. I hope you will enjoy this day and that you will receive a lovely gift from your love one.

 

When I opened my Facebook account this evening, I saw this Valentine´s Day cake on my front page. It showed my memory of this day 2 years ago. I made this small banana heart form cake in 2014, the day before Valentine´s Day in my house in the Philippines. I have eaten this cake with my relatives on Valentine´s Day but sadly without my hubby as he was already back in our home in Germany. I just posted it for him saying,

 

“HAPPY VALENTINES DAY MY DEAR !!! Made for you 2 hours ago. Will be eaten by us tomorrow. Sorry, you are on diet;-)” 

 

LOL! I have not bake a cake for tomorrow as we can´t consume this and besides that we still have a lot of Christmas goodies here. We are not  fond of snacking sweet food. I know, they are still good. I need visitors to be able to consume those yummy cookies. I even still have unbaked cookies dough in the freezer. I think they will be bake for Easter. If I were in my home country, these food will be gone long time ago. I have small nieces in my Philippines home who have sweet tooth. I miss them as well as my dog Angus.

 

Do you celebrate Valentine´s Day? We actually don´t but we are planning to eat in the new Chinese restaurant nearby. We would like to try it and maybe I will write a review about this restaurant. I will be having new food photos again. This new restaurant has a buffet which is called Teppanyaki Grill. I wonder what kind of grill that is. We´ll see. So long for now. See you tomorrow again. Time for me to go to bed. Enjoy your Valentine´s Day!

 

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Food and tagged , by with 8 comments.

How To Celebrate Carnival In Germany

Spree river in Berlin, Germany.

Spree river in Berlin, Germany.

In a weeks´ time, the Carnival in Germany will start its celebration. Exactly this coming Thursday on February the 4th, the “Altweiberfastnacht” (Women´s Carnival) will take place. That is the Thursday before the Ash Wednesday. Women can kiss  men they like after cutting off their neckties. No man with necktie is safe with this German tradition. Those who are working in the offices wearing neckties can be sure of this cutting ceremony. This is the chance for the men to get rid of their ugly and unloved neckties which they have received from their friends or relatives. LOL!

How To Celebrate The Carnival / Karneval:

 

  1. Altweiberfastnacht / Womens´ Carnival—cutting the neckties of their workmates or office mates, freedom to kiss the men of their choices, getting drunk and have fun at work or in Carnival celebrations.
  2. Rosenmontag / Rose Monday —this is the highlight of the Carnival, the 5th season of the year. Enjoy and having fun watching the street parades, marching bands, dancers, costumed men, women and kids.
  3. Watching the  floats in the street parades with the caricature of the faces of the politicians who are most talk of the country like Chancelor Angela Merkel.
  4. Prepare a tote bag where you can put the gathered sweets and maybe toys. Bring umbrella just in case you need it for catching the goodies. The participants of the street floats are throwing candies, chocolates, toys and confetti to the people who witness the Carnival street parade.
  5. Wearing fancy clothes like those from Star Wars, Batman, Demon, Death, Mickey Mouse on Rosenmontag even if you just watch the street parade.
  6. Camouflage yourself by wearing a thick make up as an anime woman or a cat woman.
  7. Attending costume balls from Altweiberfastnacht, Rose Monday until Shrove Tuesday (Fastnachtdienstag). The fun will end before Ash Wednesday.

 

There are street parades  in almost every cities in Germany. The most popular and traditional Carnival parades are those in Cologne,  Düsseldorf and Mainz but I don´t know if it is still the same this year because of the incident that happened in the eve of this new year 2016 where hundreds of women were molested by North Africans and Syrian men.

 

Socializing with the Germans is fun. I hope the Rosenmotag /Rose Monday carnival  parade will be peaceful.

 

P.S. I will change the photo above when I have found a Carnival photo from my album. Thanks for reading.

 

Copyright 2016, All Rights Reserved by Thelma Alberts

 


Posted in Carnival / Karneval, Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life and tagged , , by with 12 comments.

How The Germans Celebrate The New Years Eve

Fireworks at the Rhine River

Fireworks at the Rhine River

Thinking about what to write this evening, it came to my mind how every people in every country celebrates the end of the year. The new years eve or as we call it here in Germany, “Silvester.” I was wondering why the last day of the year, the 31st of December, was and still is called Silvester. Why not other name like Manuel or so. So I Googled it. See…Google helps me in every question I have in mind.

 

According to my research online, December 31 is celebrated as the last day of the year in Germany, in honor of Saint Silvester / Sylvester. He was the Pope in the early 314 to 335. He was the one who baptized Constantine The Great, the Roman Ruler. He died in December 31, 335. Source: Wikipedia

 

How the Germans celebrate the Silvester/ New Years Eve:

 

There are lots of New Years Eve / Silvester parties in Germany. They are mostly well planned and organized by the people in charge of the organizations. Some of these Sivester parties are:

 

  1. Parties in different kinds in the discotheques, hotels, pubs and restaurants.
  2. Open Air  parties in some popular cities like in Cologne or at the Brandenburger Tor or Gate in Berlin. Open Air Concert and shows in Berlin are one of the tourist attractions in Germany. Two kilometers party at the Brandenburger Gate with invited show stars, singers and live bands. At exactly midnight, the amazing fireworks starts. After that, there´s an open end disco party where one can dance until one “drops” the ground. The best thing is, this Silvester party is free.
  3. Fireworks at the Rhine River. There are Silvester parties aboard the river boat cruises at the Rhine. One has to book the ticket a few weeks in advance to be able to have a place to stay. From the boat, one can view the awesome New Years Eve / Silvester fireworks.
  4. Enjoying the party at home with some friends and relatives with lots of food and not to forget, the drinks.
  5. Just celebrating alone at home watching the TV Silvester parties. Then watching outside at midnight when the fireworks start to spark in the sky.

 

What about you? How do you celebrate your New Years Eve? Home alone or with friends and relatives? Wherever you might be, don´t drink if you drive. I hope you will be having a wonderful welcome to the year 2016.

Copyright 2015, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, Expat Life, Traveling and tagged , , , by with 15 comments.

Old Christmas Decorations

My Christmas Tree ©Thelma Alberts

My Christmas Tree ©Thelma Alberts

Hello  fellow blogjobbers. How was your day? I was so busy this Tuesday shopping  and then putting up our Christmas tree after dinner. Yes, I have just done it. Almost too late, don´t you think? No, it is not.

 

The old German tradition is to put the Christmas tree in the morning of the Holy Eve. The door must be closed so the children would not see it before the Holy Eve dinner. When the children go inside the living room, they are surprised to see the beauty of the tree and the gifts under it. Well, this tradition was practised more than 30 years ago. I wonder if the Germans are still practising this.

 

I usually put the Christmas tree a week before the Holy Eve but this time, I was so busy with my offline work that I kept on postponing this, until today. While hanging the Christmas decorations, I noticed that they are all very old Christmas balls. Imagine, more than 30 years. They are still good. From those decorations, I have a set of wooden trains. Those wooden trains were first hung by my son while I carried him when he was a few months old. Hanging our Christmas tree brought some wonderful memories about my young life in Germany. A young life full of learning the tradition and adapting the German lifestyle (especially the food) besides learning the language. Time flies so fast.

 

BTW, I don´t use cut pine trees anymore for Christmas trees as it´s always hard to get rid of them after the celebration. We use plastic Christmas trees. It´s easy to fold them and put them back to its box when they are no longer needed. Of course, the fresh cut pine trees are wonderful because of its scent but too heavy to carry and the falling pine needles are irritating. Anyway, I bought some pine tree branches for my vase decorations. The smell is enough for me to enjoy.

 

What Christmas tree are you using? Thank you for reading. Enjoy your Christmas.

Copyright 2015, All Rights Reserved by ©Thelma Alberts


Posted in Celebration / Feastivity, German Christmas Tradition and tagged , , by with 8 comments.
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