Sunday, December 20, 2020

Hard Lockdown at Christmas in Germany

The year 2020 is about to come to an end. We were all looking forward to the Christmas season but due to an exponential rise in COVID-19 cases here in Germany, the federal states have decided to go on a hard lockdown beginning December 16. For some states, it started last Monday, December 14. What does the hard lockdown mean? For our state it means closing down of schools and kindergartens, and shops and retail businesses too. Beauty salons are also closed. Bars and clubs too. Restaurants are only allowed to sell food and beverage for takeout. There is a curfew from 8 o' clock in the evening until 7 o' clock in the morning. Shopping malls, garden centers and hardware stores are closed. Supermarkets, drug stores, pharmacies, gas stations, pet stores among others remain open. One can only go out when one goes to work, or to buy basic commodities and medicines for the family, walk the dog, or go to a doctor's appointment. Only two households are allowed to meet with a maximum total of 5 adults, children below 14 years old not counted. On Christmas days, the number allowed to meet is additional four adult persons but that's it. Fireworks sale and use are also not allowed on New Year's Eve.

It is going to be a very silent Christmas night for some but I think this is an opportunity to spend more quality time with the family, to sit down together and share Christmas dinner together, to reflect on what is really important in life, to pray together for healing and world peace and to be thankful for all the blessings received this year.

I wish you all a blessed 4th Advent Sunday and a beautiful and merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Give the Gift of Moments this Christmas

If there is one thing good about this pandemic, it is more time shared with the family. The year 2020 is almost coming to an end and Christmas is in a few weeks. If you are still looking for that perfect Christmas gift, then search no more. I would say that one of the best gifts you can give your loved ones this Christmas are those beautiful moments.

Start or Continue Family Baking Traditions
The holiday season is the perfect time to bake Christmas cookies. So heat up your oven and get those pins rolling. Wrapped in nice tins or clear bags, they are always a hit for the young and old. And you can never have too much cookies.. Paired with coffee, tea or hot chocolate and your Christmas cookies are gone in no time.

Photo Prints and Books
In this digital world, most of us have tons of photos stored in our phones, in our hard drives, even in CDs. We, more often than not, forget about them and they are just there, as digital files waiting or perhaps craving for attention. Why not make prints out of them and put them up on your wall or better yet make photobooks out of them? There will always be something special about printed photos. They immortalize your memories and those important moments of your life

Send out Christmas Cards
I love receiving greeting cards on the mail. This is the time, more than ever, to be sending out Christmas cards to families and friends. To remind them that despite not seeing them for months, they are thought of and are loved. 

With the restrictions for parties and gatherings, it is a challenge for families to celebrate Christmas with our big circle of family and friends. We must be careful, be patient, be understanding of the times, so that we can all see each other again, giving out hugs and shaking hands. But until then, let us continue to be careful and stay healthy. So we can also share more moments with family and friends. 

Thursday, December 3, 2020

The Kinderreisepass

When travelling abroad, we all need an official document that will identify who we are. In the case of Germany, travelling babies and children aged 0 - 12 years old are issued a Kinderreisepass. The Kinderreisepass or children's travel passport is issued to children with German citizenship by the local city office. It is issued on the same day that you apply for it since it has no integrated chip, and is usually honored by most countries. Finger prints will also not be collected. The Kinderreisepass is valid for six years and can be renewed until the child is 12 years old. From 12 years onwards, the child will need a Personalausweis (personal id) or a travel passport depending on the country of destination. 

How to apply:
Normally, you need to go to your local city office once your documents are ready and complete. At least one parent / legal guardian and the child himself needs to appear personally. But in this time of the pandemic, one would need to get an appointment. Most cities have an online appointment system. For those who have no online access or don't know how to use computers, there is usually an information stand at the local city office where one is assisted in getting the appointment. 

Which documents are needed? 
To get the Kinderreisepass for your child, you will need to bring the following: the original Geburtsurkunde (birth certificate) or the old Kinderreisepass of the child, the passports or personal ID of the parents whichever is available, signed declaration of consent of both parents / legal guardians, a biometric photo and a fee of €13,00 which may be paid in cash or through debit card.

Updating of the Kinderreisepass can be done anytime, for example if a new photo, change in the color of the eyes and the height of the child, needs to to be done.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Situations When Replacing Your Home Door Locks Makes Sense

This year, American homeowners will spend over $30 billion on home security equipment. Most homeowners view the purchase of new security equipment as a good investment. Choosing the right security upgrades and improvements for your home is not easy.

Taking the time to inspect your existing door locks is wise when trying to get a true assessment of how secure your residence is. The following are some reasons why investing in new home door locks is a smart move.

Dealing With the Aftermath of a Recent Home Burglary
One of the worst experiences you can have as a property owner is having your home robbed. Once your home is burglarized, your main goal needs to be preventing this from ever happening again. The only way to accomplish this goal is by replacing some of the outdated security equipment you have in place.

Getting new door locks installed is a great way to turn your home into an impenetrable fortress. Choosing the right locks and getting them installed is only possible with the help of an experienced locksmith. Working with a reputable lock rekeying service Orlando is crucial when trying to get this job done quickly and correctly. Before hiring a locksmith to do this work, be sure to assess their reputation and the level of experience they have.

Fix Lock Functionality Issues
Are you having problems with one or more of the door locks in your residence? Rather than allowing these problems to linger, you need to address them head-on. Completely replacing the faulty door locks in your home is vital when trying to keep burglars out of your home. Taking the time to research all of the replacement door locks at your disposal is the only way to ensure the right decision is made.

A locksmith should have no problem getting your new door locks installed with ease.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Officially Winter

Today, December 1st is the official meteorological start of winter. However, based on the calendar, winter starts on the 21st of December, the winter solstice, which is the shortest day of the year. 

Today we woke up to a cold morning, roofs and walkways and plants, and any surface where snow can land on, blanketed in white. I always find delight in seeing snow. It hasn't snowed for some time in a long time now so the color contrast outside is a very welcome sight. But I had to sweep the snow on our walkway so that no one will accidentally slip while passing by. 

The snow is wet though and the temperature is not so low (about 1°C), so I guess it will not stay long and will eventually melt away during the day. But it is a good start for December... And perhaps, when one dreams long enough for a white Christmas, it will be granted this year. Who knows? 

The Possibilities of Each Room in Your House

You probably spend a lot of time in your home, and it makes sense that you want to make the most of your space. For most people, each room in a house has untapped potential. It's rare that everything is just perfect, and it is even rarer if it stays that way. This makes home remodeling or home building a never-ending possibility in the lives of many. Here's a look at getting the most out of each room.

The Kitchen
For some, this is the centerpiece of the home. If you want an exceptional kitchen, with lots of space, new state-of-the-art appliances, beautiful lighting and exceptional flooring, working with a local home builder Ponte Vedra can get you what you want. With a new build and a builder proficient in customizing homes for clients, you can get the most out of a design. A truly outstanding kitchen will complement the rest of your home, and give you a look to that inspires the other rooms.

The Bathroom
This is another room  with unlimited potential. A look at vintage bathroom styles from the past century clues you in on your options. Some of these might seem a bit outlandish, but it is fun to look at what has been done in the past:

A 1930s bathroom with turquoise tiles
A 1940s geometric teal bathroom
A 1950s pink and silver bathroom
A 1960s bathroom in blue florals
A 1960s hot pink bathroom
While you probably won't want these styles, you might find something you like from the past. A new room can always borrow from earlier decades.

The Bedroom
Among the most intimate of rooms, a bedroom should match the personality of its owner or owners. Sometimes it can be hard to please two different sensibilities, but with the skill of professionals it can be done to perfection. 

3 Reasons To Embrace a Nautical Interior Design

Decorating a home is a surefire way to make it a unique place that reflects the personality of the people living there. Before starting, a theme should be selected that can run through the room and unify the home. Choosing a nautical theme can be a great way to decorate a home in a classy manner that still leaves lots of options for customization open for a truly personalized result.

1. Customization
The romance of the sea has inspired many famous paintings, songs and poems. Visitors to harbors can watch the bustle of ships arriving and leaving with the help of tugboat services Luling LA, waves lapping at the docks and seagulls flying overhead. There are many ways to incorporate the wonder of the sea into a home. The color scheme can contain plenty of whites and blues or consist of shades of brown. Rooms can be decorated like the interior of a ship or a lighthouse or embrace a more subtle tone with the nautical aspects showing up in paintings and decorative items.

2. Abundant Choices
The nautical theme has been popular for a long time, so many things have been created over the decades that will fit in with whatever aspect is chosen, whether is it lighthouses, luxury ocean liners or underwater monsters of the deep. Thrift shops, yard sales and internet shops can all be perused to find hidden gems.

3. Timeless Look
A beautifully decorated home that embraces the classic nautical feel will have a timeless quality. Because the theme has remained popular for so long, it will likely be enjoyable for years. Since there is an abundance of decorative options, it is always possible to freshen up rooms with new items without giving up the nautical feel.

Choosing a nautical theme can be a great choice for homeowners who want a fun way to express their creativity while creating a classy look they can be proud of for a long time.

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