What You Should Know About German Beer Coasters or Bierdeckel

When the server set the beer (and wine) in front of me with a coaster on top of it, a light bulb went off in my head. You see, German Beer Coasters are called Bierdeckel or Beer Lid, and I never quite understood why a coaster would be called a Deckel. Turns out, there’s some interesting history associated with these…

What is the Sandmaennchen? A little Man who Sent German Kids to Dream

When the Wall separating East Germany from West Germany fell, many of the icons produced by the East vanished. There is one BIG exception. The Sandmännchen. What is the Sandmaennchen? And how did he continue to thrive despite his East German origins? This little figure with a long goatee and pointed cap captured the hearts of German children with his…

A German Kitchen Witch Brings Good Luck to Your Kitchen!

When I was growing up, my mother always had a flying Kitchen Witch hanging in the kitchen window. And naturally, as an adult with my own kitchen, I have one too. Now, the legend says that a German Kitchen Witch will protect your food as you cook it… no more pots boiling over, no more burnt cakes…. just delicious foods that…

Countdown to Christmas With a Playmobil Advent Calendar

  When my kids were young, their Oma gave them a Playmobil Advent Calendar. This had to be the exciting HIT of the Season. Imagine, every day, a box containing a little Playmobil part would be opened (they took turns… ) and the piece would be added to the scene that was developing on the side table in the family…

Start a Family Tradition- Ravensburger Christmas Puzzles

Every year we bring out a new Ravensburger Christmas Puzzle to work on during the days and nights leading up to Christmas. A table is set up, and the pieces are sorted (edge verses middle)… and off we go. Ravensburger …the German company based in Ravensburg… makes high quality puzzles with beautiful Christmas images. They hold up well to lots…

Find the BEST German Slippers and House Shoes for Men

It has taken a little convincing, but I finally convinced my American guy that he should be wearing German house shoes in the house… and not just socks. Growing up in a German house-hold, we always had house shoes that we slipped into when we came inside. These weren’t just slippers (although, he got slippers too)… House Shoes have a…

Where to Buy Great Looking, High Quality German Sandals for Women

While I was growing up, my mother and my Oma always stressed the importance of having “good shoes”. You need a foot bed that gives you support! Then summer comes rolling around, and you want to wear sandals or slides, but how to keep giving your feet the support and comfort they need? Where can you find quality German Sandals…

What is a Charivari? Learn more about these Lederhosen Chains

When you are at a German Festival, and see people in Bavarian Tracht, you may notice that some men  wear what looks like a chain of charms on their Lederhosen. What is the Lederhosen chain called? And what does it symbolize? Because I’m nosy as can be, I did some digging. The chain of trinkets or charms is called a…

German Soccer Vocabulary! Learn to Speak Fußball!

My earliest soccer memories are of my Opa watching his beloved Fußball on our black and white TV. Since this was California in the 1970’s, the program was in Spanish. This didn’t stop him, since he know the sport inside out. It did, however, inhibit my German Soccer Vocabulary. And when I got older, and produced a few soccer players…

Why does America call Football Soccer? A short history of Fußball

Sometimes it seems like Soccer in America is treated as a “lesser” sport. Then it feels like an insult to injury when we don’t even call it by the name Football or Fußball like the rest of the world. And why is that? Why does America call Football Soccer? Why would we have a different name for a worldwide sport…

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