Christmas Markets

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In 1990, my oldest daughter and I took a Christmas Market Tour in Austria and Germany.  The picture above is captioned, “Our favorite booth at Innsbruck”.  It was an amazing bus tour through Austria and Bavaria and it snowed heavily for the entire trip.  There was some white-knuckle bus riding on alpine roads like this one….

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…and my daughter got this shot of me walking back to the pier at Herrenchiemsee.

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This was typical of our daily walks through famous landmarks and tourist areas ….

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My daughter in Salzburg

….and, of course, the wonderful Christmas markets.

Since that trip, my daughter has collected items for me that are reminiscent of our time there.  I have one shelf of Department 56 German houses and Christmas market booths.  There’s even a Krampus by the Biergarten.

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Another shelf holds an array of small collectibles – an advent calendar, a music box, small cardboard foldouts, tins, boxes…
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My favorite is this tiny market my daughter made that has one-inch figures.

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I love to look at the little collection and remember a week in 1990 with blustery mountain roads, snow-packed sidewalks, Gluewein and huge pretzels at colorful crowded booths and a storybook Christmas on all sides.

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It’s Souvenir Time in my May Kitchen

My oldest daughter has traveled extensively and in the 1990s, I went along on trips to Austria, Germany, Switzerland and Ireland.  In addition to the souvenirs we brought home, we have pieces that we painted about 20 years ago.  The Dutch and Irish souvenirs are displayed earlier in the year, but these treasures make up the decorations in my May kitchen.

My daughter’s folk art painting of a Swiss Alpine scene…

…my hand-painted wooden German spice set and some German beer steins…

….a music box and some small souvenirs from Switzerland …

…some Dutch souvenirs that stay up all year, German plaques, and two of my hand-painted wooden pieces….

…..pieces from Germany, Austria, England, Hungary and Switzerland in the window area over the sink….

….lots of little Schnapps glasses which are easy to bring home on the plane….

….and one of my daughter’s painted pieces that holds jars of staples and is in the kitchen year-around.

It’s fun to look around the kitchen all through the month of May and be reminded of so many beautiful places and times.