Tuesday, June 25, 2013

A Second Wedding on a Perfect Summer Day

Remember how a while ago, Micha and I headed to Nico and Claudi's secret wedding in the countryside near the ridiculously named German city, Worms (hehehehe, gets me every time)? Well, this past weekend, we celebrated their wedding once again! That's right, one wasn't enough for those crazy kids, so they threw another, this time much bigger, wedding celebration for all their friends and family to attend this summer. (I no longer question such decisions, as I've slowly learned that people be crazy when it comes to weddings.)

So this weekend, we and a few other Berliner friends packed up our cars and headed down to a little tiny flower-filled town in the countryside of Bavaria for a lovely summer wedding fĂȘte.

The weather was perfect (and you know we don't get to say that often here in Germany) and the setting was absolutely idyllic. A sprawling farm covered in colorful flowers, ridiculously loud sheep (who seriously yelled like people! I'll upload proof in video form :), the tiniest of medieval churches for the "ceremony," and the perfectly snow-topped Alps in the background (which I sadly did not manage to photograph). Not shabby for a quick, festive weekend getaway.

The (surprisingly awesome) catch to this wedding: the dress code was hats required! And you'd think that some people would be party poopers and not play along, but man oh man did everybody come through! And it looked oh-so fantastically dapper...

Marie and Katrin

Betti and Dreschi

Hanna and Kerstin

The Brits are really onto something with their tradition of fascinators and hats. 

The groom and co-ceremony Meisterin, Sandra | No-longer-so-wee buddies Mia and Aron

The lovely bride (with neon pink shoes!) and her jolly dad

Naturally, I wasn't about to let a hats-required occasion go by just wearing a normal old hat. (I mean really...) So I told Kerstin I'd DIY something for the two of us, already knowing that I without a doubt wanted to try my hand at these fabulous party hats (this one) (and this one) from A Subtle Revelry.

And the result? 1) Easiest things to make ever! Though you do need significantly more tulle than you think, as the directions aren't specific on that; and 2) I solidified my status as crazy American and heard from the bride's father at least three times throughout the course of the night, "you should never take that hat off!" Mission accomplished.

More photos of the ceremony and dancing to come, there are too many cute ones for one post!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Our Suprise Bon Voyage Party

Last weekend, Emily and family were visiting us and we'd planned to hang out with Kerstin on Saturday so Emily could meet wee Hanna and we three ladies could drink and chat while the menfolk watched one of the five million soccer championship games that takes place in May (seriously, why are there so many different ones? Is one trophy not enough??).

So you can imagine our surprise when Micha and I walked into Kerstin's backyard to see a giant tent set up...

...and all of our friends there waiting for us!

Kerstin and Emily had been planning a bon voyage party for us for months!! As you may or may not know, Micha and I will be embarking on a 7-month around-the-world trip in July (yippee!!) - and if you didn't know, surprise! - and the funny thing is, I'd been whining to Kerstin for weeks about how I wanted to plan a goodbye party for us but just couldn't get my act together enough yet to do so.

Wee best friend and I have fun together, even if our expressions tells a different story

Teaching the rugrats (Mia and Aron) how to properly smile for a picture

Aron's a pro: that's his typical picture expression - I taught him well early on!

But that's what great friends are for, right? To know what you want before you want it and to take the party planning load off your shoulders (when you've got enough packing and visa-obtaining and route planning to deal with) and give you the biggest, happiest surprise when you're least expecting it!

There were map garlands all over, a kickass map tablecloth that Emily whipped up, sweet make-your-own banners personalized just for us (Kerstin is as big a fan of Papermash as I am), and the coolest homemade sign listing some of our destinations and their distance on it planted right into the backyard (in the first picture). You bet your ass I'll be stealing and keeping that sign for years to come.

My favorite part about the party - and they really went all out - was that everybody contributed a dish from one of the countries we'll be visiting on our route! How awesome is that idea?! And how much more awesome are our friends for all playing along?

Sara and Christoph made a vegetarian dish decorated with pictures of cooked cuy

The weather was complete crap - it did not stop raining for even a second the entire day - but it happily did not matter even one little bit. Everyone stayed until the bitter end, eating, drinking, laughing, listening to us blabber about our travel plans, and, of course, playing with the adorable little ones.

Micha and his Keule | Photobombed!

Little Mara | Sara and Hanna bonded in the warm indoors

How cute (and adorably jolly) is this little nugget? (Also, please note giggly Charlie in the background)

I really can't thank Kerstin and Emily enough for giving us the perfect send-off before we leave our friends and home behind for 7 months of adventure and who-knows-what-else! Ladies, I tip my hat to you. You rock my world.

And if you want to follow our travel adventures starting in July, you can find Micha and me over here: Flip Flops and Wanderschuhe, where we'll be sharing our adventures as much as we possibly can on the road. All the details about our trip can be found there, too (soon enough :)!