Please don’t call child services…

Do you ever have one of those moments as a parent when you realize that you have ROYALLY screwed something up? Not like you threw Billy up in the air one too many times and he puked on you, more like you threw Billy into the air and he hit his head on the ceiling fan and now he leans a little when he walks?

O fell asleep on the way home from a long day of playing with the cousins. NBD. A carried him up the 2 flights of stairs to our apartment, because he’s just a bit too heavy for me to safely and comfortably carry that far. O wasn’t sleeping very deeply, so I just left him in the bed in his clothes, hoping to sneak in later and change him or at the very least wrestle a pull up onto him. At about 10:30, he woke up, calling for me. I went in and decided that since he was half-awake now was as good a time as any to get that pull-up on him. First went the pants, then I started to pull his underwear off. I heard a quiet *snap* and then O started screaming. Huh? What the hell just happened??

Since he was crying the “I’m hurt” cry, I picked him up immediately. And then I saw it- a 2 inch long strip of elastic laying in the bed. It must have been sticking out of his underwear and got caught under his butt when I pulled them off. The snap was it breaking! -and popping him in God-only-knows-where o_O

So…. here I sit. Wondering if I have scarred my child for life. What if he develops a kinky fetish? Or worse? What if he develops a phobia? What if he ends up being that weird guy that never lets a girl take his pants off?

Oh my word, what have I done???


I love my child, but….

Peaches Geldof- thanks for supporting my theory that most women must be on something if they are full on “attachment parenting” parents.


I’m writing this post from the bathroom the tiny water closet with just the toilet in it. Now, I’ve had this thing where I really don’t like being in a bathroom with the door closed since I got stuck in the tiny bathroom in the Pre-K room at St. Theresa. But I’ve come to learn to love hiding in this very tiny tiny room with a functioning lock on the door. Even then, though, sometimes I can’t enjoy pooping (or pretending to poop) in peace. Case in point: As I was writing that last sentence a small voice called through the grate on the door “Mommy!!! I have to go! Are you in there, mommy? Are you trying to poopoo? Is it coming out?” (We discuss poop quite openly in this house, apparently)


We’re on Day 3 of O not being at kindergarten. May 1 is a Labor Day sort of holiday here in Germany. So the kindergarten was closed Thursday and Friday, too. How lovely! What makes this time even more special is that my child is at that age where he asks A LOT of questions. Like repeatedly asking, “When are we going to …?” Or asking, “But, why?” in response to anything that comes out of my mouth. As the title of this post implies- I love my child, but… I swear, it’s like he has this special patience detector. And right when I start to run low on patience, that’s when he attacks. Endless questions, whining, repeating the same things over and over, clinging to my legs. Gah!!! I mean, I know that someday I’ll look back on these times and laugh, maybe even miss the way he has to be physically attached to me in some way at EVERY MOMENT. And I must obviously love O. My brother used to be the same way as a little kid. I punched him quite often. So my restraint of not knocking my kid out is proof of both my increased maturity and my motherly love, right? 🙂



Note to attachment parents: I admire you for doing what you think is right for your kid. I just really, really don’t understand y’all. I think our brains are just wired differently.

My life, as told by Sophia Patrillo

Picture it: Germany 2014

A young(ish) wife gets off the train after spending the day working in the city. She makes her way through the streets of the small town. It’s a beautiful sunny day. Suddenly, she sees him: her husband, sitting outside a cafe eating an ice cream cone. She smiles thinking she’ll surprise him. As she walks on she sees someone else sitting at the table. She doesn’t know this person. Maybe her eyes are playing tricks on her. The sun is low, maybe she only thinks the two are at the same table. She makes her way forward debating whether she, too, should have some ice cream— her waistline is not as slim as it once was! As she approaches the table, she realizes she’s made a grave mistake. The other person is sitting at the table with her husband. She’s shocked.

That young woman was me. And the other person at the table, was my own son. His hair was so long and wild, that he looked like a new person after a haircut! Look how grown up this child looks:

All smiles after a haircut and an ice cream cone.

All smiles after a haircut and an ice cream cone.

My kid eats broccoli!

I mean, I’m not trying to brag or anything, but yeah, I’m bragging. Because what mother isn’t thrilled when her three year old loves a veggie? A weird, tree looking, full of vitamins and fiber veggie? Exactly. I mean, the only thing I can think of is that I love broccoli. So he’s been getting it since the womb. And I never really listened to the “don’t eat this or your kid will get gas” breastfeeding advice (actually, some of that advice, I didn’t get until after the fact, and since he wasn’t anymore gassy on the veggies than off, well, I just kept eating them). So we eat a good bit of it in our house. And Oma makes it quite often, too.

So today I was at home and I wanted some soup. Hmmm…. I had some beans and some tomato sauce, I could make minestrone… again. But really, it was already late and I needed to have dinner ready in less than an hour, so, no, no minestrone. Then I spied the broccoli chilling in the fridge. I thought, What the heck? I could try some broccoli soup. How hard could that be?

Well, it did turn out to be a bit of work (and a few too many dishes to be washed). But oh my word—- it was an AMAZING soup! Like Armin even complimented it (that says a lot, normally I might hear a pleasant grunt if he likes it— he really doesn’t understand that you’re supposed to kiss the butt of the woman who makes all your meals). So, I’m posting my recipe here. I found a recipe online, but i didn’t have everything it called for, so I kind of made up my own way. If I don’t write it down, then I’ll forget. Feel free to try it, maybe your kids will eat broccoli too.

Cream of Broccoli Soup

1-2 Tbsp butter (I used unsalted b/c that’s what they sell here)

1/2 small onion (finely diced)

1 tsp garlic (minced)

3+ cups of broccoli (florets and some stems, roughly chopped)

3 cups of broth (I used a bit of both: chicken and veggie)

3 Tbsp butter

2 Tbsp flour

1 1/2 cups milk

1/2 cup cream or half and half

1/2-1 tsp salt

1/4- 1/2 tsp pepper

2-3 Tbsp Parmesan cheese (grated)

  • Saute the onions in the butter until soft and golden.
  • Throw in the garlic and broccoli.
  • Add the broth really quickly, saying “Oh crap! The broccoli’s gonna burn!”
  • Let that simmer for ten minutes or until the broccoli get pretty soft. Go ahead and drag out the blender while you wait. You can also start melting the 3 Tbsp butter in a small saucepan.
  • Take portions of broccoli and broth out and blend/puree in the blender. The recipe online was all about putting it in a new bowl or something so that you could puree every last bit, but I thought that I’d save a bowl and keep some broccoli chunks. (Good thing, because O kept asking for more broccoli in his soup!) If I were smart or savvy or whatever, I could have also had one of those hand-held blender things, but I’m not one of the cool kids. Keep your soup on low while you work on the milk mixture.
  • When the butter in the small saucepan is melted, add in your flour, stirring really well. Then add the milk and cream. Keep stirring while it all heats up.
  • Add the milk mixture to the broccoli slop and viola! You have cream of broccoli soup. Add in the salt and pepper and Parmesan. I’d recommend tweaking those amounts to your family’s particular tastes.
  • When you 3 year old spills it on the table. Point out that it looks like snot. This will actually encourage him to eat more of it.

If you like to live dangerously and callously pour in the milk without measuring, have no fear: you can always add a bit of cornstarch to thicken it up when you’ve outdone yourself on the liquids. I live very dangerously, thus, I know this trick well.

Anyway, it’s that time of year for soups and warm drinks. I’m hating the cold here in Germany, but at least I can find yummy ways to warm us up!


Happy January!

Well, it has been quite a while since my last blog post. Things got busy with my German classes and then we had to get packed for our trip to Louisiana. We had a great time with family and friends and then we got sick. O got better, I got worse. We came home and that pretty much takes us to where we are now.


Our Christmas vacation was great, really. We saw a lot of people and got to spend quality time with some of our favorites. I’m especially grateful for that time in light of the fact that a very special little friend has passed away since our trip. I hope that O will remember at least some of his time with his friend.

Now we’re back in the hum-drum of the everyday in cold, snowy Deutschland. I’m feeling better and ready to power through the next three months of German classes. I’m looking forward to the new challenges that 2013 will bring and hopefully I’ll have a few friends come for a visit!


Biggest Challenge of 2013: My son decided he wants to be a rock star. How do you tell a 2 year old that eventually he’s going to have to grow up and get a real job????

What is a bored Hausfrau to do?

Well, I tell ya, I’m certainly not getting skinny by spending my days on a treadmill and my floors are always gross (by my standards, Oli and others would still eat off of them). No, I’ve chosen to pursue more entertaining/stressful ventures with my new free time.

It started with the 8-feet-too-long-curtains we bought from Ikea. I asked Armin if we could possibly add a sewing machine to the moving in budget. Nothing fancy, definitely not a Singer (although I almost peed myself when I later saw one for a steal at Aldi). But it works, it has several stitch functions, and it’s fairly quiet (a plus for when you sew long hours into the night).

So I started with the curtains. Easy. Done.

Then I made a little purse for my little Fashionista Niece:

I saw the fabric and knew I had to make something cute with it!

Then I got a really great idea. Great in theory that is. It started with a brief search through several stores for “nice” children’s clothes. Yes, this is Europe. And yes I could go out and buy pretty much any couture line for babies. And O would be most fashionable. But none if it is nice. None of those cute little rompers for church. No crisp white button down shirts. No fancy little white leather shoes. It SUCKS. How am I supposed to make my little Southern Gentlemanbaby look all cute and adorable???? Answer: Make this.

Oli’s Christmas Outfit!

This little gem almost made me pull my hair out. Burda is a pattern company that makes patterns for sale in Both Gemrany and the US. When I found the Burda Style pattern for this, with English on the outside of the package, I thought “Cha-Ching! This is it!” Unfortunately, when I got it home, the directions had every language BUT English. Uggggghhhh! Also, there is a glaring typo in there (really, REALLY confusing).

However, now my little man will have a beautiful romper to wear on Christmas. We’ll be home then, but my biggest fear would be getting to Louisiana and not finding anything in his size that I liked (which happened last Christmas and I had to settle on something).

O started school!

All geared up and ready for school!

“Geht zum Kindergarten, NOOOWWWW!!!!” (go to Kindergarten, now!) This is now O’s morning mantra! He stands at the back door yelling this about 5 times while waiting for me to grab my purse, find my keys, put the dog in the kitchen, tie my shoes, etc. He loves going to the Kindergarten. I love that he loves going. Part of the orientation set up is that the parents bring the child and stay for an hour or more at a time. Then after a few times, the parent leaves the child for consecutively longer times each day until child and teacher and parent are all ok. Well, the first day we went, O didn’t want to go home. When the day came for me to leave him for about a half hour, he kissed me and said “bye, mamma!” Now, he doesn’t even stop what he’s doing to kiss me bye. I might get a “Ciao!” or a “Tchuss!” Then, I usually have to br

ibe him a little to get him to leave to go home without causing a scene. lol!

It’s kind of funny though. In the US, O stood out with his blonde hair and blue eyes, but here, all of the boys in his class have blonde hair and blue eyes! But, I think O is still the cutest. I might be partial, but c’mon, look at this kid. Isn’t he cute?

What a ham!