Monday, February 28, 2011

(It was) A bad day

My friend surprised me with this because he knew I'd had a bad day! Sweeeet, thank you dear friend!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Sushi Saturday

This Saturday a sweet friend took me to a really cool sushi place. Sorry, I could wait to start eating until after I had taken a picture ;) Asparagus and California (Salmon) rolls... very good and great prices too!
On this picture you see the whole sushi bar area. It is tiny and hidden in the back of a Japanese grocery store. Such a hidden gem! Thank you for showing me, dear new friend :)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The challenges of a challenge

This is one of the more obvious challenges of a challenge: piles and piles of yoga laundry! With every yoga class you get shorts, a top, and (at least) one big towel.

I faced another challenge today when I tried making it to the last yoga class of the day at my studio and the work was just not finished and it couldn't be postponed... what to do, what to do? Well, I'm not officially in a challenge right now... just my self-imposed goal of going "almost every day" for two months. So... of course I stayed at work until way after the last class FINISHED and I will go to the 7 am class tomorrow! Never done yoga that early, so it'll be a first :)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


No pic today because I am at home sick and I don't know how to post a pic from my phone... Remember, still no Internet at my house. Anyway, in my last post I told you about my commitment to practice Bikram yoga daily in the next two months. Now, this time frame wasn't randomly picked by me. Bikram (the guy) promises everybody who practices daily for 60 days a new body. Yes, everyone! (Quote: You're never too old, you're never too sick, to start from scratch once again.) So... A new body in 60 days... Sounds like magic? Not really. Bikram yoga classes are extremely challenging. Even people who are in great shape will be challenged immensely. But there are amazing rewards if you practice regularly. There are thousands of people who are living examples of it. Check out this story: Student of the Month. It is amazing, and it is not the exeption! Bonnie went from obese with high blood pressure, diabetes and high
cholesterol, to healthy, trim, and full of energy. All with the help of Bikram! Ok, of course this didn't happen in 60 days, but a 30 day challenge (30 days of daily practice) jumpstarted her progress.

Anyway, this post wasn't even supposed to get this long. Because of Bikram's promise of getting a new body with daily practice, most Bikram yoga studios organize 30 or 60 day challenges where participants challenge themselves to practice daily. And I just wanted to say: apparently the universe knew I was going to start this private 60 day challenge, and didn't want me to have to do it by myself. My studio will start a 30 day challenge soon and I've already signed up for it :) Yay!!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Recommiting to Bikram Yoga

Bikram Yoga is a fixed sequence of Hatha Yoga postures, put together by an Indian yogi named Bikram Choudhury. Bikram (the guy) promises that his yoga sequence can heal the body and the mind, no matter how old or how sick. Now, I am a scientist, so it is in my nature not to believe blindly. But, after a couple of months of Bikram Yoga practice and a lot of reading on the topic of Bikram Yoga and yoga in general, I know it works... and I know it works for anybody, no matter how old or how sick. (If you have any questions, ask away! PS, you can post anonymously, no login required.)

I am recommitting to my Bikram Yoga practice and plan on practicing often, preferably daily, in the next two months.

Deutsch: Bikram Yoga ist eine feste Abfolge von Hatha Yoga-Stellungen, die von einem Indischen Yogi namens Bikram Choudhury entwickelt wurde. Bikram (der Mensch) verspricht, dass seine Yoga-Abfolge Koerper und Geist heilen kann, egal wie alt oder wie krank. Nun bin ich Wissenschaftlerin, also liegt es in meiner Natur, Aussagen nicht blind zu glauben. Nach einigen Monaten Bikram Yoga-Praxis und viel Recherche auf dem Gebiet Bikram Yoga und yoga im Allgemeinen, weiss ich jedoch, dass es funktioniert... und ich weiss auch, dass es fuer jeden funktioniert, egal wie alt oder wie krank. (Falls ihr Fragen habt, nur her damit! PS, ihr koennt anonyme Kommentare hinterlassen; man braucht kein Login oder Passwort.)

Ich widme mich wieder meiner Bikram Yoga-Praxis und plane in den naechsten zwei Monaten oft zu praktizieren, wenn moeglich taeglich.

Friday, February 18, 2011

This morning

7:33 am: Huh, there really IS a lake in front of my apartment building! (It has been covered with snow.)

7:37 am: The big street by my house... that goes straight to my work, too :)

7:39 am: The library :)

7:45 am: Cute little downtown area

7:48 am: Almost there...

7:50 am: See my office building already? It's hiding behind the trees.

7:55 am: At the office for Bagel Day... early enough to snatch up a Boston Creme doughnut -- it's vanilla pudding filled, do I have to say any more? :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Getting into it...

The warm-up was officially over at the beginning of this week. I started working on-site at Ford!

Of course the Ford headquarters are in a fancy shiny modern building, but this is where the engineers work. (Sound familiar, dear former BMW colleagues?)

I love working on-site, but the drive to Ford is 45 minutes, so I have not been enjoying that so much. I pass this cool highway intersection though. Doesn't look too impressive on the picture (hey, I was driving after all!). In reality it's really cool! FOUR bridges over one another :-o

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


The weather has been "warm" these past days, so the snow is melting away, yay! The deer are happy they can find food again behind my office building.

Happy Valentine's Day :)

 ♥ Hmmm, some sugar cookies for you ♥

How to... make your own heating pack!

Since I lost my heating pad during my move, I set out to make a new one :) As a filling I used wheat (I think) bought from Whole Foods.
An engineer doesn't use measuring tape of course...

How hard can sewing be?! Well, apparently not THAT easy if you want to produce straight lines :))

With straight enough lines, I tried making a small heating pad for practice. Sew three straight sides (use the material inside out), leave one side open to fill in the wheat. Turn the material right side out.

Fill the wheat into your material pouch.

Flip the open side and sew a straight line to close.

All done! It's all crooked, but who cares! It's warm and cozy!

The heating pad can be warmed up in a microwave. For a tiny pouch like my first one 30-60 sec is enough. Make sure not to overheat to prevent the wheat from burning and - worst case scenario - catching fire. It has never happened to me though and I've used these things for more than 10 years.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The library

I looove libraries! Tons and tons of books, more than I could ever read... quiet corners to sit down and browse... free magazines... free books... free internet... peace and quiet... I'm so happy the local library is less than a mile from my apartment!

 And this is where I usually hang out to post on my blog. (I still don't have internet at my apartment.)

Deutsch: Ich liiieeeebe Bibliotheken! Bücher massenweise, mehr als ich jemals lesen kann... ruhige Ecken, in denen man sich hinsetzten und stöbern kann... kostenlose Zeitschriften... kostenlose Bücher... kostenloses Internet... viel Ruhe... Ich find es super, dass die Bibliothek weniger als einen Kilometer von meinem Apartment entfernt ist!

Hier sitze ich normalerweise und schreibe Blog-Einträge. (Ich habe immernoch kein Internet zuhause.)

All my stuff!

Party with me! As of last Thursday, I have officially received all of the eight packages I had sent over from Germany. They were all mailed on the same day. The first one got here after three weeks, the last one after seven weeks. If I recall correctly, none arrived on the same day. (I'm just happy they all made it!)

Deutsch: Feiert mit mir! Seit Donnerstag bin ich offiziell wieder im Besitz meiner Sachen, die ich in acht Kisten von Deutschland in die USA geschickt habe. Ich habe sie alle am selben Tag losgeschickt. Die erste Kiste kam nach drei Wochen an, die letzte nach sieben. Wenn ich mich recht erinnere, kamen keine zwei Kisten am selben Tag an. (Ich bin nur froh, dass sie alle angekommen sind!)

Kalt kalt kalt

Yep, that's 3°F you see there. That's -16°C for all metric unit lovers. In my words: WAY too cold!

Deutsch: Jep, da sind 3°F zu sehen. Das wären -16°C für alle Freunde der metrischen Einheiten. In meinen Worten: VIEL zu kalt!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Time to get comfy!

Yesterday a friend helped me to put my IKEA sofa together. (Thank you, friend!) It took less than an hour and my apartment feels SO much more comfy now!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I have a companion.

May I introduce my new little friend... the iRobot Roomba! If you know me really well, you might know that I have a thing for robots -- friendly robots that is, robots with a soul (Wall-E comes to mind, for example). I just heart the little guys! Well, Roomba is my new vacuum robot. I left the light on for him even though I left my apartment righ tnow to post this! It just felt wrong to let him work with the lights turned off!

This is him working his little heart out! ♥ you, little one!

Monday, February 7, 2011

The one with the chicken wings -- errrr, Super Bowl, I mean!

Yes, there you have it! I was more impressed with the chicken wings and the company of my friends and coworkers than the "big game". I think I might need to learn some of the (many!) rules of American football to really appreciate watching it.

The one with the unexpected VISITOR!!!

On Saturday I got an unexpected message from a friend from my German university days... he was in the area! It's was pretty cool and unexpected, because this friend apparently didn't even know I moved to the US and only found out by coincidence on Facebook! We had a really nice dinner and then went to an Irish pub. I had a great time and it was so nice to see someone from "back home" and just hang out. (He also did an exchange semester with me in Michigan in 2005, thus the Michigan jersey!)

The bathrooms in the Irish pub were so cool! They had the Claddagh symbol on them... just like my ring :)

The one with the excuses ;)

Just a quick note in regard to my inconsistent posting frequency... First of all, I apologize for leaving you guys hanging for a couple of days! My reasons (a. k. a. excuses) are a) I still don't have internet at home, b) when I was trying to catchup using the library's internet, their wi-fi was down, c) there really isn't that much going on these days besides working, d) I've been concentrating on getting my apartment in order (there is still a bunch of furniture to be bought and installed), and I just needed the time!

Don't be upset please :)

The one with the Girl Scout cookies

A co-worker brought girl scout cookies to work on Thursday! Something I didn't even know I had missed :) I bought four boxes. To anybody outside the US who is not familiar with the concept: Once a year all girl scout divisions in the US order tons and tons of cookies to sell to neighbors, their parents' coworkers, etc. Part of the money they earn this way goes to their divisions and they pay activities like camping trips etc. with it. AND... they're really tasty!

I got two green boxes (chocolate-mint) and two red boxes (chocolate-peanut butter).

The one with the microwave

So, in preparation for the snowstorm, I finally bought a microwave and set it up last Wednesday. The thing about the microwave... I was sure there was one in my apartment! I was sure! So sure indeed, that when my friend and I went grocery shopping for a DVD night, we bought tea... she had asked me, if I had a kettle or a pot... "No, I don't," I had said, "but I have a microwave. It won't be the best tasting tea, but it's better than nothing." When we got home and wanted to get started on making the tea, she looked around the kitchen... and looked again... and looked again... and then I looked... and looked again... no microwave! Fun times!

I should probably buy some pots soon, too ;)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

OMG OMG, no internet!!

Hey guys, I'm still here, but I still don't have internet at my house and the public library is letting me down! They're having trouble with the wifi, so no pics.... Promise to come back and post some as soon as possible :) Take care and happy weekend!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

No Snowday after all...


We didn't get as much snow as we thought we would, so I went into work this afternoon. My car was only covered in snow on one side, because the wind was blowing so hard yesterday night.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Blizzard warning

This is what we are expected to see tonight and tomorrow. A big amount of nothing-ness... lots and lots of snow. I will probably be working from home tomorrow. All of my colleagues are taking their laptops home with them, so they can stay off the roads tomorrow. Personally, I am looking forward to staying in all day. I've had too many errands to run, too much stuff to do lately, so I welcome a "forced brake" like this.

Deutsch: Das ist der Anblick, den wir fuer heute Abend und morgen erwarten. Eine grosse Menge Nichts... sehr sehr viel Schnee. Ich werde moregn vermutlich von zuhause aus arbeiten. Alle Kollegen nehmen ihre Laptops mit nach Hause, damit sie morgen nicht auf die Strasse muessen. Ich persoenlich freue mich darauf, den ganzen Tag zuhause zu bleiben. Ich hatte so viele Dinge zu erledigen, so viel Krams zu tun in der letzten Zeit, dass ich mich auf die erzwungene Pause freue.