Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas time in New York (part 2)

The Saturday of our New York trip was all about the christmas windows of the stores. We started at the bottom part of central park. The first windows we saw were the ones of Bergdorf Goodman. We saw Tiffany's & Co's windows and spend time in the store itself, it's so nice to see all the shiny jewelry. The one of SAK's, for which we even had to wait and get in a little "room" to look at it (it showed a video of ice, changing color). especially Fifth Avenue was really crowded, so it took us a long time to walk on it. Some windows had "scenes" from different countries, which turned around and looked very pretty.  Some other windows were really fun too, because together they made a story about a Yeti. There were just so many other great windows, I just never had so much fun, looking at store's windows.
In the Rockafeller Center was also a christmas market, which was, compared to our german ones, really modern! We actually could go into the stands, and most of them had the special light, which keeps the stand a little warm. Of course that was crowded too, but the stands really had nice things. We ate fried pickles, which sounded weird to me the first time, but they were so fantastic, I loved them!
We continued walking on Fifth Avenue, watched the windows and went in some stores, we went in two Lindt and one Godiva store, to get the free testers ;)
The last big stop on our list were the Macy's windows. I think Macy's spent the most money for the windows. They were really nice, it was telling a christmas story with a little boy, and it really looked so pretty.
Inside of Macy's was a whole floor just with christmas ornaments and decoration. We spent a lot of time there, and ended up eating at Macy's too.
It was such a long day, and we walked so much, through so crowded places, but it was worth it!

The last half day, sunday, Max and I went to have lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe on Times Square. It was so awesome, and it was so much fun! The atmosphere was great and the food was amazing. Luckily we had reservations, because there were many people waiting already for their turn, because they had no reservations.
Afterwards we went home and packed our stuff together. Nicole and I drove home that day, and when we arrived at DC, there was snow! I was so excited about it, and form any crazy reason, I got snowdays the next two days, which means I had no school on those two days!


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Christmas time in New York (part 1)

We spent last weekend in New York again! The reason we went was to see the christmas windows and decoration.
The first day I went to the city with Nicole, looking for a flea market, which we didn't find, because it was only open on weekends, and because Nicole still has her concussion we took it easier this day. So we went to the......... park, a park, which was built on an old subway station. There were still the rails, and it was all overgrown with plants, and they put art in the park. It was really nice to walk around there, because we passed apartment, and also a school.
We went to a crepe restaurant for lunch, which had so great nutella hot chocolate! After the whole meal we decided to go and have a mani- and pedicure. That took us a little while, but we could watch the people walking by the store while the nail polish was drying.It really was very relaxing, and it was good for Nicole too to relax. Afterwards we were more energized to go to the Chelsea market, which had many different stores, most of the expensive, but it was really fun to look at all the stuff, especially with the bakeries ;).
In the end we met Max for diner and we went to a middle eastern restaurant which was really good too.

The next day, friday. we went to the natural history museum in the morning. We spend a lot of time in the subway, because we first took the train in the wrong direction, got off, but Nicole didn't do it in time, so we waited for her to get back, took an express  train, which was also an mistake, because it just drove by our stop, so we got off and to go all the way back again. But we did arrive at the museum, and the first "part" we went in was the underwater area, because I wanted to see the huge whale. I really liked to see all the windows with underwater scenes, it was made really well.
We also went in a stones and minerals section, and in a part with animals from North America. But we also had not too much time, so we had to hurry through a little bit.
The thing we were hurrying for was the Broadway show "Christmas spectacular", performed by the Rockettes. It was really  a fantastic show, there were many different scenes, with great dancers and actors. The show was all about christmas, and in the end, when they were performing the scene with the three kings visiting the child, they even had real animals like sheep and even a camel! It was so amazing and so much fu to watch!
After the show (it was raining instead of snowing) Max and I went to see the huge Christmas tree in Rockafeller Center. It was really crowded, but it was worth it going through the crowds of people, because the tree looked great! It has a huge Swarovski star on the top, which looks so beautiful. It was even possible to skate in front of the tree, but usually people were waiting for their turn for 4 hours and the tickets cost 40$! That was not really worth it, obviously ;)
Then we went home, I also got one more New York experience, in which we were in the super crowded subway stop, with a crazy man in front of us.
Good two days :)





Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Black Friday shopping!

After the thanksgiving diner and watching the movie Max drove us to the Potomac Mills mall for shopping. It was really full, even though it was midnight! For those who don't know: black friday is the day after thanksgiving, on which stores have many sales.
The stores had really good deals, we went to Gap, Hollister, Aeropostale, American Eagle and so many other stores. It was really fun, and it was so crazy to see how many people are willing to stay up long until the morning (obviously we were these people too ;) ). We found many things, for example jeans, a backpack, shirts, sweaters and other things, and got them all for a good price :) And it was so much fun to go shopping at midnight for 5 hours!
In the end we were in that mall until 5 in the morning, and surprisingly I didn't feel that tired. But, of course, as soon as I came home I went to bed immediately and slept until 2 pm, which is not that long though.
We spent the rest of the day and the rest of the weekend with decorating the house for christmas and we already have a christmas tree!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving

On wednesday I had no school so we started preparing food for the following day, Thanksgiving! 
On Thursday morning we watched the Macy's parade in New York in TV. It is a huge parade, and it is organized so well. They had little parts of many things, like TV shows, and even famous people were performing there. It kind of reminded me to the "Faschingszug" in Germany, even though they are not half as big as this parade. 
We still had some preparations to do, but we were pretty much done when our friends Carlos and Gaby came. Of course we also had turkey, I think ours was 16 pounds, and it was a pretty big one. When Max cut the turkey, so we wouldn't have to bring the whole turkey on the table, I couldn't stop staring at it, because I never really saw a turkey being cut and I have to say, it also was kind of disgusting, but when Max was done and we got to eat it, it tasted really good. We also had a lot of other food, Nicole helped me with doing sweet potatoes, there was bred and stuffing for the turkey, and so much other stuff I forgot the name for and for desert we had pumpkin pie and a caramel one. Everything tasted really good, and it was so nice to sit with the family and friends and talk and just enjoy the time. Nicole even had a tradition, in which everyone says for what we're thankful for before eating. 
After a while (and after they made me play the guitar for them ;) ) Carlos and Gaby left and we started watching a movie until my friend Madina would come over for Black Friday shopping!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

New York, day 5

On our last day we decided to stand up earlier to go to the Madame Tussauds.When we arrived at it, I was very excited, because I always wanted to go to a Madame Tussauds. After buying the tickets and waiting, we went into the first room with some actors and other famous people. In the first room they had for example Taylor Lautner, Robert Pattinson, Julia Roberts, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Tyra Banks, and, the ones I was most excited about, Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne! We took pictures with many of them, I took most pictures with Sharon and Ozzy of course. In the Madame Tussauds they had a room of New York, with Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe,and a lot of New York things, a room with sports stars, one room with presidents and serious people, like Gandhi, and a lot of other rooms. We went through such a horror thing, in which people frightened us, and also in a 4D cinema. They had one more Marilyn Monroe (of course I was very excited about that), Elton John , Bob Marley, Charlie Chaplin, Rhianna, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, and soo many other people! We posed like the wax figures and took really many pictures, all of that was so much fun! We also spend much time in the souvenir store and bought actually a lot, but somehow it was worth it!
After we left the Madame Tussauds, we were walking to a mac 'n' cheese place for lunch, and it was quite a bit to walk, but we didn't knew it was that far away and when we were half way, we thought we were already too close to it to give up!
So we had a really good lunch, and headed back to the apartment afterwards, because we were about to go home. In the train back to DC we slept and rested.
All in all it was a great weekend, and I enjoyed it so much!


New York, day 4

On the fourth day we met with Max's aunt Rosie in chinatown and had a long lunch. Aunt Rosie was very funny and she and her husband (very smart man), are very cute together. We ate and talked for about 3 hours!

Afterwards it unfortunately rained a little and it was cold, so we spend time in chinatown, going in some stores, in which you could get really Chinese things, which was really funny. In one huge store I had a little splinter in my finger, and that really drove me crazy! Luckily Madina knew how to take it out again, I was so relived!
Max showed us the store of his favorite photographer. It were really impressive pictures and I enjoyed looking at the photographs. And also we went to times square, went in a few stores, and took pictures.
That was a very calm day, and that was maybe not to bad, so we could relax a bit from all the action!

New York, day 3

On our third day we went to the central park.
It was really nice, because the trees were colorful and very beautiful. We saw the John Lennon memorial, for which I was looking for the first time I was in New York. There was even a guitar player, who played Beatles songs. We were walking around, taking some nice pictures and listening to the music which was played, because of a jazz event or something like that.
We found a statue of Hans-Christian Andersen and a pond and very near it was the Alice in Wonderland. The amazing thing is that in some parts in central park, if you look in a special direction, you can think that you're somewhere in Europe, because there are some buildings that looks a bit like castles.
Afterwards we went to FAO Schwarz, a huge toy store, right next to a Apple store, which is under earth, with a huge glass "roof", and this store was soo full! In the FAO Schwarz I saw the biggest Snickers bar and Reese's cups, I've ever seen (Max even bought the Reese's one) !
After that we went to Brooklyn, because of a Kazakh restaurant for Madina, so we rode the subway for one hour, in which I had a very nice nap ;)






Friday, November 15, 2013

New York day 2

On the second day Madina and me planned much more, than we actually did. The first thing on our list was the Empire State Building. So that's where we went. We didn't went too late in the afternoon, so the waiting time was acceptable. We bought a ticket to go to the very top of the building, the 102nd floor. The first stop we did was on 86th floor, a platform, which was outside, and which was already pretty amazing. Unfortunately the battery of Madina's camera run out (yes on the top of the empire state building!), so we took pictures, and they were okay, but just okay. So anyways, after taking pictures, we went to the 102nd floor, which was even higher (of course), and I could see the central park even better, but there were windows, so it wasn't open like the 86th floor, and that's why I liked the 86th floor a little bit better. We went back down on the 86th floor and enjoyed the view and took more pictures. It was still very amazing to see the buildings, two of them had golden roofs, the central park in fall colors, the statue of liberty, and just the whole city! Of course we also didn't miss the souvenir area ;)
Because of Madina's empty camera, we wanted to eat lunch and go home, to charge it. Nicole recommended a peanut butter place, which took us a little bit time to find, because it was in a differen area of New York, in which we've never been. It was very good and I tried a peanut butter shake!
From there we walked from the restaurant to the world trade center (I could see the freedom tower and did not want to look for a subway station or spend money on it when I already see where I want to go, to be honest), which took us more time than expected. 
When we arrived ion the apartment it was later and we were tired so we decided to stay at home and watch a movie.




Wednesday, November 13, 2013

New York day 1

We've been to New York City again! Max and Nicole took Madina and me, and it was really awesome! On the first day Madina and me walked around the city by ourselves. We went to Chinatown and did some shopping, but not too much. We also were looking for a restaurant Nicole recommended, which was very hard to find, because it was in the "deep" of Chinatown :) As soon as we finally found it we ordered way too much, not thinking that the portions are so huge!
After many hours of Chinatown, we just had enough of it and wanted to go somewhere else, so we decided to look for the Tiffany's & Co store on fifth avenue. It was on the very end of fifth avenue, so we walked by many, very expensive stores like Prada and Dolce & Gabana, and many others, but we never actually wanted to go in because it was to expensive anyways. But we went in the Tiffany's store, when we finally found it and we couldn't stop smiling, because they had so much and so shiny and sparkling jewelry.
On our way to times square, so back the fifth avenue. The first store we went in on times square was M&M's World and it was so much fun! They had everything of M&M's and tubes full of M&M's with different flavors and colors. The second awesome store was the Disney store,which was much fun too because they just had a lot of stuff and we wanted to be five years old again.
After looking in some other stores we met with Max and Nicole, to eat diner.
Afterwards we went to the broadway show "The Phantom of the Opera", for which I was very excited for. It was really fantastic, the costumes and the actors and the story, it was so perfect! I enjoyed every second, and whenever you have the opportunity to watch it, you                                                           should go!







Saturday, November 2, 2013

Halloween

Thursday, Halloween, was very exciting. The day before halloween, Max, Nicole and I carved pumpkins. Max and Nicole both did some great faces, Max's was the most traditional one, and I carved the scream mask.
On halloweens day, even my English teacher was in halloween mood, because she was wearing a appropriate outfit and gave us cookies and candy, which was very cute.
Afterwards, I was dressed up in a Marilyn Monroe dress, my friend Madina came and another girl from my lunch table. The other girls were Cleopatra and grapes, and both were very cool costumes! We sat down at our fire-pit and roasted some marshmallows and bread dough, and after that we went trick or treating! We went pretty late, so there wasn't too much left, but we still got some candy, and passed some awesome decorated houses! It was fun just to walk around and talk, there were many other kids, even teens, walking around for trick or treating, which is funny, because to me it seemed like it is just a kids thing in germany.

It was really fun, I'm glad I experienced american Halloween ;)



Monday, October 28, 2013

Spirit Week, Pep Rally and Homecoming

This week was spirit week in my school, which means there was always another theme every day:
monday: pajama day
tuesday: dynamic duo
wednesday: hat day
thursday: neon day
friday: class color day
It was very much fun seeing what other people were wearing and they were playing music and games during lunch.
The Pep Rally on friday was fun too. When I first came into the gym, I just thought wow! Seeing this huge gym with all the students inside was just amazing. They did games and a lot of cheering, I can't really see why they do that, I think it's because of school spirit, but anyways it was a lot of fun.
It ended when school usually ends, at 3:15. AT 6:30 the school did a bond-fire and in the time between I spent the time with some friends and other students on the roof of our parking garage, because they sold food and drinks there, and there was some music.
The bond-fire was just a big fire in which the school burned a doll with the shirt of the team, against which our football team would play the next day. We talked a lot and it was really nice all together.
On saturday afternoon was the homecoming game, which was fun , but not so exciting, so me and my friend left earlier at the 2nd halftime to get ready for homecoming. And our football team lost anyways, without having scored any points!
The other exchange students and me went to a restaurant and had diner there (we where definitely overdressed, because we already wore our homecoming dance clothes).
The homecoming dance itself was fun and there were a lot of people. We actually just danced the whole evening. The point when it got kind of boring was in the end when they started playing music I, which is not my music at all, but that's just my point of view, and I still enjoyed it.

I'm glad to have had the opportunity to experience such american school stuff, because that's exactly the things, we don't have in germany at all.

(Pictures where taken by my kazak friend Madina, except the one she's in of course)


Thursday, October 24, 2013

To introduce you to some Food

Here in the US I tried many different kinds of food, not necessarily all are American, but some of them.
-S'mores: grilled marshmellows and chocolate between two crackers; awesome!
-Hawaiian Punch: Something to drink, I have no idea what it is made of, but it's red and sweet and I like it ;)
-Mexican food: I tried it here the first time, and it was pretty good! It was kind of spicy, but that is what to expect from mexican food.
-Cheetos: Some chips or something, it even looks unhealthy, they are very orange, but they're still good.
-Food from Kazahstan: my fiend, who's an exchange student too invited me for diner and cooked some good rice with meat. I really enjoyed it!
-Fresh Figs: I've never tried just the figs without anything else!
-"Bratwurst":  compared to the german Bratwurst, the ones here are okay, some more, some less, but I still stay with my "Nuernberger Bratwurst".
-Mac and Cheese: I reeeeally love pasta, and I never tried the mac and cheese (maccaroni with a lot of cheese) and it's so fantastic!
-Pasta with Peanut-Sauce: Max made pasta with peanut or peanut butter sauce, it was something completely new and I was so good!
Peanut-Butter: I feel like I can't live without it anymore, because you can eat it with almost everything (as you can see also with pasta) !

Obviously I need to be very strict and careful with myself, because of all these temptation ;)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

My new Guitar

I'm taking Guitar lesson here in school, which is pretty cool, and it's really fun. The only, but very annoying thing was that I had to bring home the guitar from school some days, which is not fun with the school busses, especially when somebody decides to sit next to you and your guitar in those seats. ;)
So I was looking for a guitar and my neighbors gave me the link of an internet page, which sold guitars (and everything else). I wanted to buy a cheaper one first, because I want to see first, if I like playing the guitar or not. So I found a guitar for $20. At first I was sure, that for this price something had to be wring with it, but when I went to the people's house, who sold it, and had a look at it, it was perfect! It has all the stings and works. Now I'm so happy to be able to practice at home as often as I want to and never have to worry about bringing it home and back to school anymore and I have my first own guitar! :D

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Qunceanera

One week ago Max, another exchange student Madina, who I met, and me went to the Quinceanera of a friend's friend. A Quinceanera is a very big thing in the Hispanic culture. It is a birthday party for a girl, when she turns 15.
When we first arrived after a 2 hour drive, the party hasn't really started yet, so we first had a seat and ate something. The Qunceanera took place in a gym, and because it was in a little county, many people joined it. The "main person", so the girl for who the Qinceanera was for, and "the court of honor", so her close friends, performed a dance and in the end the main girl did a performance by herself.
Afterward everyone started dancing, and we had a good evening.
It was definitely fun and exciting to experience a bit of mexican culture too!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Testing the new firepit!

Today we wanted to test our new firepit, so Max put it in the driveway.The weather was perfect for a little camp fire, because fall started a little bit, and as it became later, it became colder, so nicer was the heat of the fire. It really needed a long time until we finally had a real fire. We spend much time just throwing paper in it to keep the fire. But in the end it worked and we had a really nice fire. Our neighbors joined us and we really had a nice evening while toasting bred and roasting marshmellows.
In the end I could have spend hours just staring into the fire. We had a good time, and I think the next time we do it, I will introduce them to "Stockbrot" (which nobody knew here)!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

super-cool-Dad Post

This is probably more an in-joke, so don't wonder if you don't understand, but I just want to make sure that everyone knows, that my host dad Max (and my host mom Nicole of course too) is super cool and would never have a embarrassing parent idea (like complaining that there are too few homework) ! I just promised to do that and here it is! ;)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Washington Monument Tour


On Saturday Max, Max's parents, my Local Coordinator, one other exchange student and me went to Washington DC to see the Monuments there. There really are many monuments there, so we had a lot to do.
The first thing we saw was the Washington Monument. It is damaged by an earthquake, so there was a scaffolding around it, but it was still quite amazing to see it. Near that is the Reflection Pond (I always thought the Washington Monument is right behind it, but there is a little distance between it, which I didn't knew). Between the Reflection Pond and the Washington Monument is the Memorial of the second World War, that is also made very interesting. We also wet to see the Martin Luther King Memorial, which is pretty new and the Memorial of the Korean War, which looks very real when stay in the front of it and see the the sculptures of the soldiers.  The next memorial we saw was the Lincoln Memorial. It is one of my favorites, because it is really impressive and the marble stone looks very beautiful, and you can see many sightseeings from there, for example the Washington Monument, the Reflection Pond and the Capital building. After that we went to the quite unknown Albert Einstein Memorial (there are really many memorials in DC), the Vietnam Memorial and then we saw the White House.
In DC are many museums and you can join them for free! We didn't went inside one, but we walked through a sculpture garden, which was part of a museum. Afterwards we saw the Capital building.

In the end I can say that Washington DC is  very, very beautiful city and it is definitely worth seeing it!