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21st April, 2015. 1:37 pm. Twelve Steps Guidelines for Facebook Addicts Like Me

1. Don’t stop in the middle of a task to check Facebook. Wait until you’re done with a task, then check Facebook.
2. Figure out how many times a day you check Facebook. Then decide on an upper limit (like once an hour or ten times a day), and don’t check it any more often than that.
3. Go on a Facebook fast for a length of time that makes sense to you (a day, a week, a month). Can you do it?
4. If you are hyper-aware to notifications from Facebook, don’t just turn off the sound on your phone – turn your phone off. That way, it won’t even vibrate and break your concentration on whatever you are doing. Or go somewhere and don’t bring your phone with you at all!
5. It’s OK to use Facebook as a way of interacting with people – but not to the exclusion or inhibition of your interactions with people in real life. Every now and then, make a point of keeping in contact with the people in your life who don’t have Facebook accounts (there are more of them than you remember!).
6. Are you getting as much (information, emotions, etc) from Facebook as you are putting in? If not, adjust the balance.
7. Is Facebook preventing you from interacting enough with your spouse and kids? (Define “enough” any way that makes sense to you.) If it is, then take a break from Facebook.
8. How necessary is it to multitask? Do you need to be Facebooking while walking around? Or would it be nicer to listen to the birds sing, watch the flowers bloom, feel the gentle breeze on your face, and not run into people walking the opposite direction on the sidewalk?
9. Just because you have sent someone a message on Facebook Messenger, it doesn’t mean you have to obsessively check Facebook even more often than usual until the point when they respond.
10. Sometimes it’s better not to be posting pictures to Facebook at the very moment you are doing an activity. You can wait and post them later, when you get home from the activity, and enjoy looking them over before sharing them with the entire rest of the world.
11. Don’t check Facebook while you’re at work. Even if your coworkers are checking it while they’re at work, too, and nobody is really getting in trouble for it. Walk across the hallway to talk to your coworker, rather than tagging them in a cute post on Facebook!
12. If you pick up your phone to do something specific, like check the weather forecast or enter an appointment in the calendar, resist the urge to check Facebook just because you have the phone turned on and in your hand.
Bonus: It’s OK to struggle and have setbacks with your Facebook addiction. While in the process of writing this list, I have violated most of these guidelines. 

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25th September, 2012. 2:41 pm. The Saga of Saga, Chapter 2: Ten Weeks in the NICU

Saga was born ten weeks early, and stayed in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU, pronounced "nick-you") for exactly nine weeks and six days. She came home on Saturday, September 8th, the day before her due date. She came home weighing six pounds, nine ounces (Cecily calls it "six pounces"), and measuring about 19 1/2; inches in length. In other words, Saga came home - and not all NICU graduates do - at a weight and length that fall within the normal range for a full-term newborn. The nurses were proud of the weight she's gained (she's now more than double her birth weight) because, as they told me, there are babies who have been there longer than Saga but are still tiny.

Saga's NICU stay was full of ups and downs, full of two-steps-forward-one-step-back experiences. I have mentioned some of them briefly on Facebook along the way, but didn't feel I could write a true second chapter in her saga until I knew how it (the second chapter, not the whole saga) was going to end. In the course of her ten weeks of life, she has already come through two brain surgeries, cared for by many, many compassionate professionals: nurses, neonatologists, neurosurgeons, medical residents, lactation consultants, occupational therapists, social workers, and nurse practitioners, not to mention ultrasound and X-ray technicians, who brought their equipment, on wheels, right up to the baby's bedside.

Nurses ranged from new nurses in training all the way up to veterans with more than 30 years of NICU experience. There was even a travel nurse from Mississippi who worked here for three months and is moving on soon to her next assignment in Arkansas. And during that whole time, only one of the nurses who took care of Saga was male - I guess it takes an especially well-developed sense of masculinity to work not only as a male nurse, but a male nurse working with premature babies and new mothers. Good for him!

Aside from her two surgeries, Saga had three distinct goals she needed to meet in order to graduate from the NICU:

  1. She needed to take all her feedings by mouth rather than nasogastric tube,
  2. be gaining about an ounce a day, and
  3. be able to maintain her body temperature without the aid of the incubator.
Technically, she did not have to get off of oxygen flow in order to be discharged from the hospital; some babies go home with all the equipment and monitors needed for such.

EatingCollapse )

BreathingCollapse )

Brain surgeriesCollapse )

Rooming InCollapse )

It Takes a VillageCollapse )

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank youCollapse )

This has been a long chapter in Saga's saga. It has taken me over two weeks to write, since the weekend she came home from the hospital. I kept leaving the computer for days at a time, and then coming back to write more. Leaving it because the writing was intense, but coming back because it was good for me, to get it all down on paper. Someday, I will give these pages to Saga to read for herself.

Current mood: peaceful.

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10th August, 2012. 1:05 pm. ABCs of the NICU

A is for Amplatz / Alarms
B is for Breastpump
C is for Caffeine Citrate
D is for Desaturation (Oxygen)
E is for EKG leads
F is for Feeding tube
G is for Gavage / Gestational Age
H is for Hemorrhage (Intraventricular)
I is for Isolette / Incubator
J is for Jewelry (Remove!)
K is for Kangaroo Care
L is for Lactation Consultants
M is for Milliliters (Mils) / Monitors
N is for Nurses / Neonatology
O is for Operating Room (3rd Floor)
P is for Pediatric Neurology
Q is for Quiet after 8 p.m.
R is for Rounds / Residents
S is for Surgery / Subgaleal Shunt
T is for Therapy (Occupational)
U is for Ultrasound (Head)
V is for Ventricles (Brain)
W is for Weight gain
X is for X-Ray (Chest)
Y is for Your Hands (Washing / Foaming)
Z is for Zeroing out the scale

Current mood: creative.

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10th August, 2012. 12:55 pm. I've Been Nursing in the NICU

(to the tune of "I've Been Working on the Railroad")

I've been nursing in the NICU, twice every day.
I've been nursing in the NICU, just to raise my baby's weight.
Can't you hear the warnings beeping, breaths per heart rate?
Can't you hear the nurses saying, "Saga, suck your milk!"
Saga, won't you suck, Saga, won't you suck, Saga, won't you suck your milk?
Saga, won't you suck, Saga, won't you suck, Saga, won't you suck your milk?

Someone's in the nursery with Saga, wearing nothing waist to chin,
Someone's in the nursery with Saga, holding baby skin to skin (and doing)
Kan-ga- Kangaroo care, Kan-ga- Kangaroo care,
Kan-ga- Kangaroo care, holding baby skin to skin!

Current mood: cheerful.

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9th July, 2012. 10:25 pm. The Saga of Saga Begins

One week ago today, at 30 weeks’ gestation, our daughter Saga Desiree Richardson was born. She weighed just over 3 pounds and was 15 inches long, and was delivered by emergency C-section around 9:45 a.m. on Monday, July 2nd, 2012 (her expected due date had been September 9th).

From early on in the pregnancy, we knew from ultrasounds that Mommy (Emily) had placenta previa, a condition in which the placenta implants itself over the cervix. Some risk factors for this condition include age (I’m 35) and previous C-section (which I’d had with our first daughter, Cecily, at her birth on February 26, 2010). Doctors told us this was a high-risk situation they would closely monitor. The plan was for Saga to be born by scheduled C-section at around 36 weeks, but as we have seen, our brave little Saga had other ideas.

One of the doctors had explained to Mommy that as the placenta grew and expanded, it could cause the cervix to dilate and start premature labor. I just never expected this to happen so early, or to escalate so fast (or to happen to us in particular!). There was also the possibility that they would have to perform an emergency hysterectomy to save the mother’s life.

So last Monday was just supposed to be a regular day. Mommy, Daddy (Erik), and Cecily had spent a nice weekend, visiting the Minnesota Children’s Museum and hearing a trombone concert in the park. It being summer vacation, Mommy was off from her usual part-time high school teaching job. Daddy got up and went to his work making digital mapping software.

Very soon, I realized I was in a lot of pain and cramps, and maybe wouldn’t be able to take care of Cecily by myself all day. I called Erik, who having barely arrived at work, turned around and headed right back home. Lying on the couch in my nightgown waiting for him, I called my doctor’s office and my own mom, on her way to work in Madison, WI, who kept talking to sustain me until Erik got there. The doctor said over the phone that the cramping didn’t necessarily mean anything serious, and I should come in and have them put me on a fetal monitor.

So Erik threw some clothing onto me (I felt unable to do anything) and Cecily, packed us into the car and drove off again in the rush-hour traffic. About halfway to the clinic (which is right next to the hospital), I started to bleed heavily and got back on the cell phone with the clinic nurse. She told us to forget the clinic and go straight to the hospital’s east emergency entrance. The bleeding increased and rapidly soaked the car seat, and still the traffic kept us from getting onto the hospital grounds quickly.

When we got to the East emergency entrance, Daddy couldn’t even run into the hospital with Mommy, because he had to take care of Cecily the toddler (by far the calmest of any of us), strapped into her carseat. Two hospital volunteers came with a wheelchair and took me down a hospital hallway. That’s the last thing I remember from Monday.

I woke up at some time on Tuesday with a breathing tube over my face, feeling like I couldn’t breathe, and very thirsty. I panicked and did the only thing I could think of: signed the ASL signs for H-2-O over and over again. It would’ve been easier if I’d just signed “water,” huh? But the nurse and Erik eventually figured out what I meant. The horrible contraption that was keeping me from breathing was taken away, and I guess somebody must have given me some water.

I had lost half the blood in my body, about 3,000 ml, everything hurt, and breathing made me cough. I also didn’t know what had happened. The baby had been born; I could tell she wasn’t with me in my body anymore. But where was she? If she was OK, why hadn’t they brought her to me yet? When Cecily was born by C-section in 2010, she had been put on my chest to try out breastfeeding within an hour of the surgery.

Eventually somebody explained this much to me: My second daughter was alive, and I had to be strong for her (and start pumping breastmilk). She had been transferred to the NICU at Amplatz Children’s Hospital at the University of Minnesota – on the other side of town. I wouldn’t be able to see, or touch, my newborn baby until I had recovered enough to be discharged from the hospital I was at, Fairview Southdale. The doctors had managed to save my uterus, and I was no longer in the ICU myself.

My mom had driven up from Madison, WI, to take care of Cecily for us. Erik spent Wednesday through Saturday shuttling back and forth between me at Southdale, Saga at Amplatz, and Gramma & Cecily at home, but he spent the lion’s share of his time with me, helping me relearn to walk, eat, and go to the bathroom. Erik also became an expert on disassembling, washing, and reassembling breast pump parts, and started keeping a pumping log for me (I was supposed to pump every 3 hours).

Each day there were fewer things attached to me. First the dressing over my scar, then the catheter, then multiple IVs were removed, leaving behind bruised purple body parts and sticky medical tape residue all over my body. The nurses were amazing and supportive, and Erik was my personal cheerleader when it came to practicing inhaling through a plastic “Airlife” device so I wouldn’t develop pneumonia. He also supported me physically and morally as I went for walks around the hallways, holding onto the railing with one hand. This was sometimes emotionally more painful than physically, as when we had just walked out of my room and saw coming down the hallway toward us this procession: New mom in wheelchair with baby on lap, being pushed by hospital employee, and new dad behind them, pushing a cart full of what looked like baby shower gifts. They were going home, and they looked suffused with joy. And how could anyone begrudge them that?

Erik also spent a lot of time shuttling back and forth to Amplatz with refrigerated vials of colostrum (pre-breastmilk), and returning with updates on Saga’s progress. These were too numerous for me to remember or even understand, at first. I also sent him home with a list of things I needed: basically everything, since they had cut off and thrown away the bloody nightgown and bathrobe I’d been wearing when I’d arrived. The only personal possession remaining to me at that time was my rainbow flip-flop shoes, and I wore them all the time, with the hospital gowns. Erik brought me toothpaste, deodorant, and several possible outfits I might wear when it came time for me to go home. Also my computer, watch, and wedding ring, which made me start to feel a little bit like a person again.

On Thursday, Erik brought Gramma and Cecily to visit me at Southdale; on Friday, he brought them both to see Saga at Amplatz; on Saturday, at 11:00, I was discharged into his care, wearing my own clothes. I left the hospital by the same entrance I had entered, which felt creepy and strange as I recognized it. But Erik did not drive me home in the same car: Very thoughtfully, one of his coworkers was having the blood professionally cleaned from it, so Erik drove me in my own car … straight to Amplatz to meet my baby, finally.

At the NICU, I was given a hero’s welcome: Everyone said they’d heard so much about my progress, and were so glad I could be there now. I immediately started to cry. Up until this moment, nobody had been able to take Saga out of her isolette and hold her, because it would be too much stimulation and a shock to her weak system. But doctors said this was her best day yet, and would I like to be the first to hold her? (The nurses also put me to work: “Welcome, Mommy. Wanna change a diaper?”)

So I changed the diaper while Erik listened to the medical reports, and then I got to sit and hold my bundled-up daughter, who was wearing a hat that made her resemble a garden gnome. I must have just sat there for 20 or 30 minutes; then it was Erik’s turn. During his prior visits, he had been able to put his hands on Saga through the doors of the isolette, and swab her mouth with colostrum, but this was his first time to hold her too, of course, and he looked like a guardian angel to me.

At home, a bed had been set up for me on the couch, with useful things close to it, like my own breast pump from when Cecily was a baby. I wasn’t particularly enthusiastic about sleeping on the ground floor, because I wouldn’t have any privacy and/or be in everyone’s way, depending on how you look at it. But the bathroom is on the ground floor, and my mom had a good point when she said I wouldn’t want to be struggling up and down the stairs to the bathroom multiple times a night.

Sunday, Gramma was preparing to drive back to Madison, when Erik gave her a special gift: He offered to stay with Cecily and have a daddy-and-daughter day, giving Gramma the chance to drive me to the NICU (I won’t be driving myself anywhere until I’m considerably more recovered than this) and have some unhurried time with her new granddaughter.

And it was indeed a glorious unhurried time! We must have been there three hours. I got the orientation to the other parts of the NICU, such as the Family Lounge, Breastpumping rooms, and Transition rooms where parents sleep with their NICU babies when they are finally getting ready to come home from the hospital, a transition in which I’m sure there are so many factors to consider. I also learned extremely useful facts like: Parents have access to their babies at the NICU any time of the day or night. If you need to hold your baby at 3:00 in the morning, the staff is there and will let you in.

But there was something even better in store: Kangaroo Care! I had thought it couldn’t get better than the day before, when I’d been able to hold Saga wrapped in her blankets and hat. But now they said her health had again improved another big notch, such that she was ready and able to do Kangaroo Care, which is defined as skin-to-skin contact between the preemie (or any) baby and the mother or father. So we drew a privacy curtain around Saga’s spot (she’s in a room with five more beds, but they are not all occupied), I leaned back in a recliner with no shirt on, and Saga got to perch on my chest, with all her limbs bent like a little frog, and all the wires and medical monitors still attached to her, doing what they were supposed to.

The skin-to-skin contact is said to have all sorts of health benefits, and sure enough, after the initial upset of being taken out of her isolette and shifted around, Saga calmed way down, as we could tell from her heart and breathing rate monitors. She went to sleep; I almost did too. I had the vague idea that at some point the nurses would say, “OK, Kangaroo Care time is up; we need to do (whatever) treatment, so you just give the baby back,” but to the contrary, when I asked how much time had passed (answer: half an hour), the nurses said they recommend Kangaroo Care go on for an uninterrupted period of at least an hour! So that’s what we did. Gramma helped with a few minor procedures after that, like the mouth-swabbing, but mostly she had passed Erik’s gift on to me: unrushed time between Saga and me, which I’m sure was as beneficial to me as it was to her.

And thus ended the first week of Saga Desiree’s life.

Current mood: exhausted.

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4th December, 2011. 11:14 pm. Back by popular demand: A new Cecily Video

Current mood: satisfied.

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28th November, 2011. 10:20 pm. It feels just like a broken heart (Trying for the umpteenth time to get LJ to post this)

Erik und ich waren zum Greifen nahe daran, ein Haus zu kaufen, und zwar dieses , direkt in unserer Nachbarschaft, nur zwei Straßen von unserer Wohnung entfernt. Es hat vier Schlafzimmer und eineinhalb Bäder, dazu eine Garage für zwei Autos. Und es schien nichts daran so verkehrt zu sein, dass wir es ablehnen müssten, wie bei den anderen, die wir den ganzen Monat November mit unserer Maklerin angeschaut haben (so ungefähr 20 haben wir bestimmt gesehen).

Nur ... in der benachbarten Garagentür sind viele kleine unerklärbare Löcher, die möglicherweise hineingeschossen worden sind - wer weiß, wie lange das her ist, oder ob es bald wieder soweit ist? Und das Haus wurde angeblich vor 6 Monaten gekauft, für ein gutes Drittel von dem Preis, den der Verkäufer jetzt dafür verlangt! Der Freund von Eriks Schwester, der als Schreiner Erfahrung hat, war gestern bei uns und hat die Fotos vom Haus angeschaut und fachmännisch erklärt, so viel Arbeit hätte der Verkäufer lange nicht hineingesteckt, um jetzt fast doppelt soviel Profit zu kassieren, wie er selbst dafür bezahlt hat!

Jetzt komme ich mir so vor, wie manchmal mit der einen oder anderen gescheiterten Beziehung, wo man sich hinterher fragt, was daran nur so toll erschienen haben kann, jetzt, wo man weiß, das das nie gutgehen konnte. Anstatt "wie konnte ich mich nur in diesen Typen verlieben?" heißt es eben, "wie konnte ich mir nur vorstellen, für so ein lausiges Haus so viel Geld anbieten zu wollen?" Und diesmal bin natürlich nicht nur ich enttäuscht, sondern auch Erik mit mir, der sich genauso darauf gefreut hat, endlich in unser eigenes Haus ziehen zu können. Unsere Gespräche mit sämtlichen Familienmitgliedern zu Thanksgiving handelten fast ausschließlich davon - wie das eben bei einer Schwärmerei so ist. Man kann an nichts anderes denken und von nichts anderem reden.

Und wie bei einer gescheiterten Beziehung, die gerade ernst werden wollte, komme ich mir jetzt auch so vor, als müssten wir sofort einen besseren Ersatz dazu finden. Genauso ging es mir, nachdem ich das erste Mal verlobt gewesen war und zwischen uns dann doch Schluss war: Eine Weile lang konnte ich mir nur eine neue Beziehung vorstellen, wenn sie auch garantiert zur erfolgreichen Ehe führte. Meine nächste Beziehung schaffte das tatsächlich, aber erst Jahre später, nachdem wir uns richtig kennengelernt hatten, gottseidank. Sich nach einer Enttäuschung gleich dem Nächstbesten an den Hals schmeißen, und gleich heiraten wollen, das kann ja gar nicht gutgehen.

English here, about the house we almost made an offer onCollapse )

Bleah, my German still feels kludgy and out-of-practice. I could be so much more eloquent if only I were writing directly in English, instead of composing the German first and then translating it. But that's why I'm bothering to write my journal in German in the first place. I'll just have to keep slogging on.

Current mood: disappointed.

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5th November, 2011. 12:29 am. Posted mainly for the appreciation of joyeuse13

I set out to write down my criticisms of the "Little Pim German" DVD series that Cecily and I have been getting from the library. This turned into quite a long diatribe (but I'm trying to be useful and give constructive criticism, really!)

I decided to post my thoughts here as well as send them to Julia Pimsleur Levine. If anybody other than my fellow linguists is interested, go ahead and click below.

The problem with Little Pim is that he doesn't sing!Collapse )

Current mood: satisfied.

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4th November, 2011. 11:20 pm. Playing House, again

Morgen früh gehen wir uns wieder Häuser anschauen, diesmal möglicherweise so viel wie neun am selben Tag. Die Immobilienmaklerin, mit der wir im August Kontakt hatten, hat uns eine Liste von 27 Häusern geschickt, die ungefähr unseren Voraussetzungen entsprechen, und Erik und ich haben uns die Fotos und Informationen dazu im Internet angesehen und bis auf die neun besten reduziert. Irgendwie kann ich kaum glauben, wie schnell sich das organisieren ließ - so als ob wir eines von den Häusern, die wir morgen sehen, wirklich sofort kaufen könnten.

Das entspricht aus mehreren Gründen nicht der Wirklichkeit, worüber Erik und ich soweit wie möglich miteinander im Klaren sind. Er macht sich immer noch viel mehr Sorgen als ich darum, was in der Zukunft wäre, wenn es am Schlimmsten (und Teuersten) kommen würde - was ist, wenn wir am Haus etwas Unvorhersehbares reparieren lassen müssen, was ist, wenn sein oder mein Auto den Geist aufgibt und ersetzt werden muss, was ist, wenn seine, meine, oder Cecilys Gesundheit unvorhersehbar bedroht wird und unsere Versicherung die Behandlung nicht bezahlt? Geschweige denn, was ist, wenn seine Firma ihm kündigt, wie sollen wir uns dann noch ein Haus leisten?

Die Gründe, warum ich nicht ernsthaft daran denke, eines der morgigen Häuser zu kaufen, sind praktischer und kurzfristiger als all das. Im Grunde sind es nur zwei: Unser jetztiger Mietvertrag läuft erst Ende Juni ab, und vorher wäre es sowieso ungünstig, umzuziehen, weil ich arbeiten muss. Wenn wir im Sommer umziehen, geht alles immer besser, weil ich dann genauso wie meine SchülerInnen Ferien habe. (Alle bisherigen Umzüge, seit ich mit Erik zusammen bin, wurden während eines Sommers absolviert.) Ich darf mir auch nicht erlauben, fest damit zu rechnen, dass wir im Sommer 2012 wirklich imstande sind, in ein eigenes Haus zu ziehen, wenn der Mietvertrag abläuft. (Von allem anderen abgesehen gibt es da einige Leute, die sich im Sommer von uns einen Besuch erwünschen; das nimmt auch Zeit und Geld in Anspruch!) Aber hoffen werde ich wohl dürfen - das kostet ja soweit nix.

Ich finde es ganz wunderbar, wie mein Deutsch in letzter Zeit wiederbelebt wird. Wenn ich Deutsche Bücher lese oder mich mit jemandem auf Deutsch unterhalte (und wenn's nur Cecily ist!), fallen mir auch viele Begriffe ein, die ich gar nicht für das momentane Gespräch brauche. Heute z.B. kam mir auf einmal der Ausdruck "mit dem Zaunpfahl winken" in den Sinn, und ich weiss wirklich nicht, wieso. Aber in dem Moment konnte ich mich einfach freuen, dass es die Deutsche Sprache gibt, sie viele interessante Redeweisen enthält, und diese mir noch nicht verlorengegangen sind, wie ich es dachte.

Und als nächstes (nachdem ich das hier übersetzt habe) schreibe ich an die Begründerin von der DVD-Reihe "Little Pim German," von der wir ein paar Folgen aus der Bibliothek ausgeliehen haben, um mich darüber auszulassen, wie sprachlich und kulturell unauthentisch diese DVDs (zumindest für Deutsch) sind. Angeblich hat die Reihe unheimlich viele Auszeichnungen erhalten, aber wenn jemand wie ich sich das anhört, muss er/sie einfach feststellen, dass echte Deutschsprecher nie sowas sagen würden. Das nervigste Beispiel, das ich (unter vielen anderen) gefunden habe, ist, dass die "Little Pim"-Figur beim wiederholen anstatt "Was ist das?" immer "Was ist dies?" fragt. Es mag sich so zwar "Englischer" (bzw. für Englischsprächige verständlicher) anhören, aber wenn man doch will, dass Kinder von diesen DVDs die echte Sprache lernen, dann kann man darin keinen Nutzen finden!

Hehe, dafür gibt es bei uns in der Bibliothek auch DVD-Sammlungen der Serie "Little Amadeus," die man sich auf Deutsch anhören kann, weil die Serie ursprünglich aus Deutschland/Österreich stammt. Weil die Disketten in der amerikanischen Bibliothek ausleihbar sind, gibt's auch keine Regionsprobleme mit unserem DVD-Spieler. Ich glaube nicht, dass wir uns DVDs ansehen könnten, die uns mein Vater aus Deutschland zuschicken könnte, es sei denn, wir würden uns einen regionsfreien DVD-Spieler anschaffen. Und per "Little Amadeus" bekommt Cecily nicht nur authentisch gesprochenes Deutsch ins Ohr, sondern auch die originale Musik von Mozart, sozusagen von ihm selbst präsentiert!

Summary/TranslationCollapse )

Current mood: optimistic.

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26th October, 2011. 6:47 pm. House dreaming

Ich traeume von einem Haus ... von unserem eigenen Haus, das wir endlich kaufen koennen, anstatt immer nur Miete zu zahlen. Erik und ich reden schon seit Jahren darueber, aber er hat immer Einwaende, von wegen es sei zu gefaehrlich: Was ist, wenn wir eine Hypothek aufnehmen und dann der eine oder andere von uns seine Arbeit (und damit das Einkommen) verliert?

Aber wir sind im Moment naeher daran, uns wenigstens ein paar Haeuser anzusehen, als je zuvor. Wir haben eine "preapproval" beantragt (keine Ahnung, wie man das auf Deutsch sagt; "Hypothek" musste ich eh schon im Woerterbuch nachschlagen). Wir haben gutes Kredit und keine Schulden. Und auf dem amerikanischen Immobilienmarkt ist alles im Moment so viel guenstiger als normal - sowohl die Preise als auch der Zinsprozentsatz. Ich suche seit einer Weile gute Angebote im Internet, hab sogar eins von den Haeusern besichtigt, aber es war ausser unserer Preisspanne (was ich nicht heute fuer viele finanzielle Begriffe lerne! Danke, leo.org!) Erik hat sich immerhin bereit erklaert, mit mir zu gehen, wenn ich mir das naechste Haus anschaue, und zwar am kommenden Wochenende.

Was ich mal gerne wuesste, ist, wie manche Leute es hinbekommen, sich gar nicht nach einem Eigenheim zu sehnen - die es irgendwie akzeptiert haben, dass sie es sich nicht leisten koennen oder sogar nicht wollen. Unsere deutschen Besucher vom letzten Sonntag haben davon erzaehlt, dass sie gluecklich schon seit Jahren im gleichen Doppelhaus mieten und we auch weiter tun wollen. Weil wir uns aber noch nicht so gut kennen, habe ich sie nicht gefragt, ob oder warum sie denn kein Haus besitzen wollen. Es ist doch der amerikanische Traum! Aber sie sind ja nicht uebliche Amerikaner. Was ich mich auch gefragt habe, ist, warum sie ueberhaupt in den USA bleiben - ihre Soehne sind zweisprachig, und der politische und wirtschaftliche Ausblick in Deutschland scheint mir viel besser als in Amerika. Beide haben die Kompetenzen, eine gute Arbeit zu bekommen, und beide machen auf Facebook ziemlich viele Bemerkungen, die Occupy Wall Street unterstuetzen. Ich hoffe, ich bekomme mal die Gelegenheit, sie zu fragen, was fuer Gruende sie haben, hier zu bleiben, oder ob sie tatsaechlich mal vorhaben, nach Deutschland ueberzusiedeln. Etwas Besseres fuer die zweisprachige Erziehung der Soehne koennte es ja gar nicht geben ...

English summaryCollapse )

Current mood: thoughtful.

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