Lounging in Loipersdorf

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{internet photo}

Yesterday we went to Loipersdorf, a wondey natural hot springs spa resort in eastern Austria {very close to the Hungarian border}. There are lots of little places like this all over Austria, but this one is the closest {hour & 20 min. away} and the biggest. It was really nice, sunny and semi-chilly weather...perfect for warm water. I say warm because it was not hot like a hot tub, which I was expecting...at least in some parts. Still warm enough to feel good. The water is mineraled up and feels sorta slippery when you are in it.

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We did love the slide and did some tandem rides.
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Art wanted to ride the super fast lazy river all day.
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It's a hard life. We're managing.

And the big sister...

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...Ceci, who is also concerned with winning. A little purple bean out on the soccer field. A feisty, competitive one at that. She'll take you down in Battleship, Memory, Guess Who? or even Monopoly...just be prepared to play several thousand times.

{i act like my nieces are my own children, I know...but how can Aunt Coco not want to claim these cuties?}

You win, Ana Banana

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Ana totally tried to one-up me on the topfenknödel with her mega BS. That would be her Banana Split. And she did. She told Amy to send this to me. Nice one, Ana. You win...mostly because you are dang cute.


Mmmm....Topfen

Topfen is a popular soft, sweet cheese used in many pastries and strudels in Austria. We don't really have anything exactly like it in America. It has a lower fat content than cream cheese and no added salt. In Germany, they call it Quark. Anyways, a topfenknödel, topfen dumpling, is a common little tasty treat here and the other night I tried my hand at some.

Roll the topfen mixture (with a little sugar and egg?) and boil those cheese balls in salted water.
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Then roll them up in the sugared breadcrumbs.
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Sprinkle some powdey sugie on top and you have yourself an Austrian delicacy. And your husband will eat 5 in 20 minutes!
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ok, so mine weren't homemade...I got the frozen ones (still good).
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Can you guess what Brösel and Zucker are? {Nouns are ALWAYS capitalized in German...crazy}

Next, I'll be trying a topfenstrudel:
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update: husband not total ventilator

art does not always leave the dishwasher and oven open. only for 30 minutes after use to cool off. oh, but washing machine must always be open, K?
{and i never exaggerate, K?}

Aufsteirern Fall Festival

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Yesterday, Art and I went to the big Aufsteirern festival downtown. Graz is the capital of Steiermark and hosts this fall festival every year. People from all over Styria dress up in traditional Austrian wear and come on down to celebrate {drink}. You have never seen so many
dirndls and so much lederhosen...it's OOC {out of control}. I have gone from laughing at these get-ups {at first spotting}, to sort of enjoying their dearness, to full out wanting one of my own. {The cheapest I have spotted is 385 Euros...about $550 bucks!}

The girls look really pretty and womanly in these dresses. A lot wear their hair in braided pigtails and many make sure their bosoms are perched up like a shelf in the white pouffy blouse. Some guys look cute in the lederhosen...others...do quite not.

Some snapshots of the event:
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Pretzel garland and a contemplating Art...so deep.
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A young couple in lederhosen love.
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If you choose to forego the dirndl, jeans, a Styrian vest and white blouse are acceptable.
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Drinking the Schilchersturm seasonal wine from the region...
Zebra print is an acceptable alternative to the dirndl as well. Leopard is not. Nor is snake. K.
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Some sort of alpaca or llama?
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Nice teeth.
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Goodbye Mr. Chips...
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Ventilator Valentín vs. Close-it-up Coco

Yes, we've discovered a major area of disagreement in this marriage...one that marriage prep couldn't have prepared us for. One that at first caused a little feistiness between me and my lovey and now has turned into a game of sorts. It's serious.

Art likes to leave things OPEN. for all time. Take our washing machine for example. The doors and the tray for detergent remain open at all times. He likes to let the water air out for fear of mildew stench. This frustrates me. I like it all closed up and looking nice. Having it open is so canty to my eyes. It's right on the left when you walk into the bathroom and those doors just flappin' open are not ok. I will walk by and close it quietly so Art doesn't hear and be so proud of my sneakiness only to walk back by a couple minutes later and see it is back open! {close it again}

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Then I go into the kitchen to make myself a nice little snacky-poo and the oven and dishwasher are wide open too! This actually is a problem as I run into the sharp corners. I usually give Art a little {nice, sweet} shout out like "are you serious?"

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And many a time I come home to a house breezin' it up to the max. EVERY single window is open. This is nice at first and gets a lot of fresh air into the apt., but after about 5 minutes, we are harboring our own insect farm. I close the windows and do you think they stay closed? Nope...Venty Valentín always strikes again.

The other night I was lying my head on the arm of the sofa and I saw a big green bug out of the corner of my eye literally almost in my eye..then I heard it {yes, heard the Annie Herman...boy-yoy-yoing noise} as it jumped across the room onto the wall. It was a big a$# green grasshopper. And, I can't tell you how many times I've been in the bath {which has a big window next to it that you can tilt open..you know VV loves that} and see a spider come crawling in or a big ole moth come flapping into my bath water. I yell at Art, "there's a brown recluse in here!". {did you ever get that e-mail about the effects of a brown recluse spider bite? please go look at this guy's hand and you will have arachnophobia like me if you don't already.}

So, not to air our dirty laundry {pun totally intendy} to you peeps, but now it's just part of life at our place. I walk into the bathroom in the morning to get ready and shut the washing machine doors {just part of the daily rountine}. I'm sure Art opens it back up when he gets up and goes in there, but I am gone to German class and it can stay open until my return. It's all about compromise right?

Tired, Sick and Feisty

I barely got any sleep last night because I've been clenching my jaw in my sleep and it wakes me up with a bad headache and then I try to stop but the more I think about how I have to stop, the more I do it. Help me luvas! I had another migraine two days ago and I think it's all somehow related.

I missed the first half of my class because I still had such a bad headache from a night of clenchy poo. When I got there 2 and a half hours late I immediately told the teacher the deal so she would hopefully let it pass without the required doctor's note and I would get my full day's pay.

And now, I feel weak and canty all over...like a sickness is upon me. The thought of being at the main train station tomorrow feeling like dookie with the mobs of teenagers that have started school this week and taken over my peaceful, cafe latte sipping bus ride with their non-stop german jabber and cantiness just overwhelms me right now. Who said it's ok to put a boatload of teenagers around me at 7am? If I see one more brightly colored plaid hooded sweatshirt from H&M or anymore terri black or gold lace up Euro shoes, I might unleash the jaw....

Annual Steiermark Flower Competition

Every year, our 'state', Steiermark, has a flower competition. It's called Landesblumenschmuckbewerb.
That translates to State Flower Competition. I don't know why it all has to be one big word, but that's what they like to do here.

The competition is a showcase of Steiermark pride and an expression of joy (as they say). This state {known as The Green Heart of Austria} is known for its landscape diversity, cultural creativity, valuable raw materials, unspoiled countryside, fresh air and unadulterated food. It really is a lush lovely land of beauty and we are lucky to be living here.

I read about the contest and saw these pictures in the local paper and thought I'd share the beauty.

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And, here at the big event where winners were announced...I think this is the Grand Prize winner on the left
or the Princess of the competition. I couldn't tell. I do love her Dirndl dress. I would get one, but they are
expensive to the max!
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We could get Art some lederhosen too. Again, expensy.
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The announcer has to take a break for a beer...naturally.
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Maybe next year we'll enter...but we have a whole lot of work ahead of us as this is the extent of our garden:
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{Photos from Kleine Zeitung}

A little outfit for Vienna

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Vienna by cocoval featuring Yumi

...cause we will make it there before the end of the year!
This is what I'd like to wear. Just thought I'd share.
Do you care? ...then don't stare. I mean, I can't go bare.

{this thing Polyvore is dangerous...go try it out}

All in a day's jog

On Sunday I went on a little joggy jog to the Schlossberg. I fit a fast paced walk up the Schloss into my run/walk sometimes and it is definitely the most challenging part. It is steep. At first you are kinda going up with enthusiasm "yeah, here I go...getting in some good quad workouts...lovin' my life" and then 2 minuten (yes, minuten) later, you are gasping for air and your back feels like it might crack off. {Unless you are Art and unaffected by strenuous exercise even though you rarely do it anymore.} Lindsey, back me up here...this is not normal...it's not that I'm a wimp.

Anyways, on the way I came across this and took a peek. I love these little markets. This one was all handmade ceramics. {forgive the crusty iPhone photos...it's really hard to keep my shaky hands steady and this thing is sensy}

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They love to use egg holders (you can see in this pic if you search). They bring you a hard boiled egg for
breakfast perched in one of these.
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You can see the trees are already changing colors...ooh, love it but I'm scared for Winter!
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at the top they have this compass to show you where you are in the world in relation to other Euro cities.
Artie like. Can we go to Münster and eat some cheese?
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This is always a nice reward for my climb.
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