Thursday, 23 August 2012

Guten Tag & Bonjour

Last week we went to Germany and France for a week for a friends wedding.

Wednesday we had an early 4am start, leaving the house at 5am.  I was dreading waking toddler penguin up but he was an angel and soon went back to sleep when we got in the car.  We flew from Heathrow and the flight was only 90 minutes.  toddler penguin kept himself occupied with his new toys! The iPad was fabulous as were all the snacks we bought with us.  He loved looking at the window and shouting clouds!

We got a taxi from Stuttgart airport to the city centre and checked in at the City Hotel.  Toddler penguin had fallen asleep in his car seat which we managed to get into the room without disturbing him so we all had a quick cat nap. Once awake we headed into Stuttgart town and straight to the huge toy store Kurtz.  My husband lived in Stuttgart when he was a kid and remembers it well. We explored two floors, stopped for lunch then headed back to the toystore and treated toddler penguin to some Playmobile 123. Kurtz even has a train set out on their roof.
We then headed on the Tram to the TV Tower and took the lift to the top.  Amazing views and toddler penguin didn't seem to be fazed by the height at all. We stopped at an Italian on the way home and toddler penguin was treated to a huge fish shaped pizza ! We had to help him finish it as it was so big.  Wasn't a problem for me as I'm eating for two and papa penguin loves loves loves pizza !


Thursday we took the Tram to Wilhelma Zoo, Stuttgart.  Wow what an amazing zoo.  Its really big and very picturesque.  We recently went to London Zoo and although the food wasn't great at Wilhelma the animals and scenery was so much better. We got really close to the penguins which was definitely the best part of the day introducing bump to all of them. Unfortunately toddler penguin had fallen asleep in the buggy by the time we reached the kiddie petting area but it was great to see him recognise all the animals.



Friday we left Stuttgart and headed to Karlsruhe for lunch and to briefly catch up with papa penguins old school friend.  We then headed across the border to Baerenthal, France and checked into Hotel Le Kirchberg.  Here I got to practice my french.  Papa penguin is fluent in German and French so its been great for him to be using the language again...and translate everything for me. Our hotel had a seperate bedroom for toddler penguin and he loved the bunk beds.  It was in the middle of nowhere and so peaceful compared to our other city hotels. Toddler penguin was an angel for the long car journey that day.


Saturday, the whole purpose of our trip we headed back across the border to Bad Bergzabern, Germany for our friends wedding ceremony.  Unfortunately for me it was all in German but it was a lovely experience.  It was however 36 degrees and very humid.  I'm so glad that we got married in the winter as we were sweating ! After the ceremony we then headed back across the border to Rott, France for the reception. It was very hot but we soon found a breeze and shade in the back garden and luckily all of papa penguin's friends spoken English.  Toddler penguin ran around like made not realising that running was making him hot and sweaty which in turn meant he got a heat rash.  The food was amazing but German weddings run a lot later than English ones.  They did the speeches in between the meals and didn't do their first dance till about 1130pm which was to YMCA and did a fab routine. Being 7 months pregnant and having done a lot of travelling and that our hotel was an hours drive into the country I was sadly ready to go so around 1am we headed back to the hotel seeing lots of deers on the way!

Sunday we headed back to Rott, France for brunch with bride and groom.  We chilled out in the gardens for hours letting toddler penguin play in the hotels playground and catching up with everyone.  Turned out the dancing went on till 5am! Such hardcore friends we have ! It was lovely to chill out with everyone....in the shade of course as it was another scorching day! We decided to check out the village of Wissembourg for dinner on the way home.  Wow what a gourgeous own.  We wish we had maybe stayed there instead as it was more local to what we were doing but ho hum it was nice to visit.

Monday we headed back to Karlsruhe, Germany and checked in at Hotel Santo.  It was very chic and good location with only a short walk into town.  We stopped for lunch and had some german sausage and found a toy store for toddler penguin. However it was sooo hot that we ventured back to the hotel and literally all had cold showers.  Talk about bad for the environment but toddler penguin was in the shower for about 20 mins.  He'd been a very terrible two that day all down to the heat.  He had a blast in the shower!

We had dinner in the hotel and it was yummy yummy.  It was an Italian restaurant and the pizza's were amazing!
We had a voucher for 50% off cocktails and I treated myself to a non alcoholic one.  Toddler penguin loved it too! Turns out my ever growing belly has its uses!

Tuesday we had a late breakfast and checked out of the hotel and headed to Media Mrkt in Karlsruhe and as it was the day before my BIG birthday papa penguin bought me the Canon S100 digital camera that I had my eye on. We took a trip to Linkenheim where papa penguin used to live.  Cooled ourselves off my dipped our feet into the  River Rhine and watching the boats past then stopped for an amazing last Germal meal of schnitzel.  Yum!


Our flight Tuesday evening was at 730pm so toddler penguin was well and truely shattered and as soon as the seatbelt light went off he lied down on my lap and watched Cars on the iPad and was asleep within two minutes which meant I could finally read my book that I had taken with me!

Wow sorry for the long blog post, hope it hasn't bored anyone but its a great way for me to keep track of what we did on holiday.  I have the worst memory !

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