It’s Not All Butterflies and Rainbows But I Can Still See the Pot of Gold

It’s not that we don’t all know this or expect this, but for the record, chasing your dreams is hard work. We knew this going in, and I am still the positive, happy girl that has been writing to you all along, but today I thought I would not only update you with our status, but throw out of some of the harsh realities. So far since landing in Frankfurt………….

*We had to share a room with our 1 year old, which didn’t sound like a problem until we learned that he would only sleep with us, not in his pack-n-play, and mostly kicked me in the face….A LOT.

*We bought a kitchen prior to our move and had M’s mom handle getting it from the person (it was used) and paying for it, etc. Upon going to pick it up, M called me to say it was so dirty and damaged it wasn’t even worth moving it. There went 250 euro that we didn’t have to waste considering we are both unemployed.

*As far as the few things we did ship over as household goods, the moving company decided to royally screw us over costing us an additional $2,000-$3,000 that we weren’t expecting and had no choice but to pay. They justified this stating that we asked for expedited shipping, which we did not, and that we would have our stuff in 4-6 weeks door-to-door. Monday is 6 weeks people and we don’t even have delivery scheduled. Our goods are here in Germany supposedly sitting at customs.

*Although I hate to admit this, it must be obvious that for the time being we are surviving off government assistance. However, the government has approved so little and denied me any money for the first 3 months since I am American, that they think after bills are paid, 3 people can survive for about 175 euro for a whole month of food and gas. Granted, we still plan on applying for a different kind of assistance for me and M can do side work for his uncle for some money, but the stress is still abundant in this household until M is employed.

So, all that being said, we have been living in an apartment for a week now, with no kitchen, no Internet, a small computer monitor we are using for TV and the bare minimum of anything you can expect. Luckily, we live next door to M’s mom so we can go there to eat and do laundry and I use the bathroom sink to wash any dishes we use to eat non-perishable items we keep here.


We did get a kitchen last night and although it is still in pieces until this weekend, we at least have a refrigerator. You never know how much you need one of those until you don’t have one! We also got a washing machine machine and M’s mom gave us her dryer. We do have a very nice bedroom with furniture (that also needs painting) and we should have Internet tomorrow. We were able to buy a car and it is registered and insured. And aside, from needing a little paint, TLC and more furniture/belongings, I adore our apartment. Our village is very friendly and everyone has been very warm in welcoming me to the community, despite my poor German skills. Our landlord is very attentive and nice and while sometimes it is a little overwhelming, it is nice to have someone who cares about their tenants and making sure they have a nice place to live. M has worked for his uncle every day this week and we are starting to see some of our assistance in our bank account. We also signed the boy up for kindergarten next year which is basically FREE and I can walk him there. Anyone from the states knows what a luxury this is!

So friends, my point in all this is that, we took a huge risk chasing this dream and I haven’t regretted one moment of it. Taking control of your life and making it what you want is hard, but if it were easy, than maybe you wouldn’t appreciate it as much. I’ve learned more than once in my life that the hardest decisions are almost always the right ones and nothing worth having comes easy.

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21 Responses to It’s Not All Butterflies and Rainbows But I Can Still See the Pot of Gold

  1. Gypsy says:

    You’re so right, the hard times really do make you appreciate the good times that much more! Glad to see its coming together… You made it! (Hope your shipment does soon as well).

  2. bevchen says:

    I hate that the Germans insist on taking their kitchens with them!! Even if you don’t like what the precious person had in, until you save the money to buy one, a horrible kitchen is better than NO kitchen at all! And how do they even know their old kitchen will fit in their new flat?! Weird.

    • I know! It definitely has pros and cons but overall I think it’s a hassle….especially after this experience!! Unless of course you have a few thousand euro for a new custom kitchen ordered, delivered and installed. ;-)

  3. worldwifetraveler says:

    Amen to that last sentence!

  4. Expat Eye says:

    Glad it’s starting to come together! It’ll just take a bit of time until you’re totally settled I guess but you seem to have all the basics in place! Not bad going! :) I’ve never heard of anyone taking their kitchens with them!

  5. alliedow says:

    I’m glad it’s all starting to work out. It took us nearly 2 months to get a kitchen, and as a professional chef, that was really really upsetting. We started off with no kitchen, internet/phone (4 months later they finally came to install that), bedroom or living room furniture (2 months later), and somehow, I kept my insanity much like you! Your positive attitude and outlook is most refreshing (I think I was a negative nelly for a good while). Good luck and I hope your belongings come soon!

  6. Elizabeth says:

    A little random but the email I sent to the address on your homepage was returned to me saying it didn’t exist?
    Maybe you know where I might find Cheerios here in Germany? It didn’t occur to me that I wouldn;t be able to find Cheerios or its equivalent but so far, no luck. I am in Heidelberg currently but will travel to Berlin later this month and also Regensburg. Any thoughts?

    Many thanks!

    • Hmmmm that’s odd. I need to check it in my page and make sure it’s shown correctly as it is working. It is [email protected]. I also think you should be able to find the equivalent of Cheerios especially considering you are in a large city. Berlin might be a good option as the few times I was there it seemed to have some “American” places. Would you try the email again? :-)

  7. j0aninja says:

    As I’ve said before it gets easier :) as for someone asking about Cheerios, I would check the big stores. Mainly Real as it has many Americanized products even under their label called “Tip” I could swear I saw something similar to Cheerios. :)

  8. I think you are so brave to take on a different world - I admire your strength - wishing you much success in your quest.

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