Weekly Smile 37 #weeklysmile

*three things that make me smile: an exercise in gratitude – feel free to steal this idea with wild abandon and fill your blog with the happy*

A big smile from me, everyone! It has been sunny this week in Bavaria and we’re really enjoying it. It was the first week for schools and so nice to hear children in the morning, waiting for each other on their bikes to go to school. We’re also spending a lot of times in our garden. Here are some of our flowers.

Our grapes may be ready in a couple of weeks.

Not a lot of apples this year, and they’re quite small. Still, we’re grateful to have them 🙂

Our niece from the Philippines came to see us last night. I cooked adobo, rice and pancit, followed by summer fruit and ice-cream. It was nice to see her again. She’s attending a Doctors’ Conference for a week. Have a safe trip back to the Philippines, our beautiful niece!

What made you smile this week?

For: Weekly Smile 37 #weeklysmile, Three Things Thursday, To Market, To Market – Echoes of my neighbourhood, FFF252 – DIEFFENBACHIA


Weekly Smile 36 #weeklysmile

*three things that make me smile: an exercise in gratitude – feel free to steal this idea with wild abandon and fill your blog with the happy*

Hello from our tortoises – Gin, Rex and Nik – happily munching their dandelions. Hope you are all fine. Lots of lovely smiles from me this week.

It’s amazing when I could just booked a flight to the Philippines after a phone call from my Mother. She wasn’t well, with temperature and flu, and I thought, I’d like to be with her. OK, it wasn’t that easy, I have to think of the timing, my sched at work and of course, Him Indoors. So, when Him Indoors got back from work, I told him about the plan and he said, why not? I looked at my sched for next term and the last class finishes middle of February next year. I’ve searched for a flight and the price wasn’t that bad, voila! I’m booked for February, 2 days after my last class. Staying for two weeks. Yay! I’m sure my Mother would be pleased.

Met my friend for lunch. We went to an Italian and she had pasta and I had risotto and we shared some mixed salad. The weather was gorgeous and we walked around town, saw nice pairs of trousers which were calling our names, so we bought them (I’ve got grey, she’s got green ones). Then we stopped by our favourite cafe and had capuccino and some cakes. Life is good!

What made you smile this week?

For: Weekly Smile 36 #weeklysmileThree Things Thursday . Also for: Nurt Thurs – Forward!, Cityscape Dubai – Echoes Of My Neighbourhood.

Prompt Nights – We tend to smile in the exact same language – [27]

smiling of eyes
sincere and pure emotion
the eyes never lie

when someone smiled at me
it pierced through bad things of life
all was well again

a ray of sunshine
a smile is so contagious
you pass it on

the presence of heart
sharing a smile is a gift
it lights up the world

(c) ladyleemanila 2016

For: Prompt Nights – We tend to smile in the exact same language – [27]


Weekly Smile 35 #weeklysmile

Hello everyone! Hope you’re all fine. Last week, my friend surprised us by inviting another friend we haven’t seen for a long time, seven years to be exact! It was wonderful to see them again. We had been exchanging news forever! That was a big smile.


Sunny Bavaria is brilliant! The weather has been great. We’ve been cycling and swimming and meeting friends. Even our tortoises are happy eating their dandelions.


Met some friends in town yesterday and we’ve been shopping, walking, laughing, drinking capuccino, eating cakes, what fun!


What made you smile this week?

For: Weekly Smile 35 #weeklysmile, Three Things Thursday: September 1, 2016

Three Things Thursday: August 25, 2016

*three things that make me smile: an exercise in gratitude – feel free to steal this idea with wild abandon and fill your blog with the happy*

remembering our henna art work in India. This was taken with my niece and sister-in-law at the Hindu wedding of HRH the son and his beautiful bride.

a pregnant lizard outside our window

our pet tortoise Gin in the garden

So, what made you smile this week?

For: Three Things Thursday: August 25, 2016, Weekly Smile 34 #weeklysmile


Kerala Houseboat Tour

We had an amazing experience the day after the wedding. We went on a houseboat tour. From Cochin we drove a couple of hours to Kumarakom where we had the houseboat tour. Master craftsmen of these houseboats is now numbering. Only a few have tremendous knowledge and experience for Kerala houseboats. Without a scale model or drawing, they build these magnificent and beautiful Kettuvalloms. The natural coir fibre once soaked in oil, seal the holes and at the same time yield a little bit on mild impacts saving the houseboats. The ‘valavara’ the roof of the Kettuvallom is made of split bamboo poles Coir ropes and bamboo mats. The art of roof making is specialty of certain villages in Kerala. We stopped to buy some crabs, prawns and fish and the chefs cooked them. They were delicious. On our voyage across these mesmerizing backwater of Kerala we caught a glimpse of the beautiful water lilies, lush paddy fields, coir villages, temples, rustic homes, and coconut groves. The people of Kerala living along these backwaters have a unique lifestyle and culture.

What made you smile this week?

For: Weekly Smile 33 #weeklysmile, WW #73 winter wild…, Nurt Thurs – Your Role by Becca Givens, Thankful Thursday: Fun, giraffe elegance…


Ten Things of Thankful 165 (Inspiration) #10Thankful – The Indian Wedding

Hello everyone! Hope you’re all fine. We’ve just got back from India to celebrate HRH the son and his beautiful bride their Indian wedding. We had a great time. Beautiful K’s parents hosted the wedding and everything was organised, from when we arrived in the city, to the henna evening with all the food (chicken, prawns, squids, curries, papadoms, etc.) and Kathakali and other Indian dances and martial art and fire performances. Not to mention we all had henna art work. We finished the night with dancing.

Him Indoors’ brothers and their families were able to join us and we were all happy that they could join us. HRH the son was happy to see all his cousins. The wedding started with the chanting and the first ritual is welcoming the groom by the bride’s family. Beautiful K’s brother washed his feet, dried them and greeted him with a garland. He then held his hand and guided him to the Mandapam or the stage. Beautiful K is brought to the Mandapam by her parents, along with young girls (their friends and cousins) carrying Deepam (symbolic to casting light along the way). She then took her place next to the groom on the Mandapam.

HRH the son and his beautiful K seek our blessings and all the elders. The Thaali or the wedding necklace is blessed by the priest and handed to HRH the son. The Thaali is a leaf shaped locket strung on a yellow thread which he tied around the beautiful K’s neck. The Nadaswaram is played loud and the couple exchanged garlands accepting each other as husband and wife.

HRH the son and his beautiful K took seven steps representing nourishment, strength, prosperity, happiness, progeny, long life and harmony and understanding.


He then showed his bride the double stars of Arundhati and Vashishta, symbolic of marital fulfillment and loyalty.


The wedding feast followed, known as Sadhya (banquet in Malayalam). It is a variety of pure vegetarian dishes traditionally served on a banana leaf in Kerala, India.

I’m really grateful that we can share with you our happiness. Here’s to the bride and groom, may their future be as bright as the ceremony, and be blessed forever. Have a great week everyone!

What made you smile this week?

For: Ten Things of Thankful 165 (Inspiration) #10Thankful, Weekly Smile 32 #weeklysmile, Three Things Thursday: August 11, 2016, Circus at Mercato Mall – Echoes of my neighbourhood, #MySundayPhoto – Blenheim Palace /August 14, 2016, Hello Kitty Bike (Sundays In My City), Tell Me Something Good #18

10thankful-banner Sundaylge-e1396359989177 SIMC


Ripples of Thankfulness

Hello everyone! Just got back from the UK where I visited my Mum, brother and family and of course, HRH the son and his beautiful bride. My friend N came with me and she also enjoyed her visit. We had some grill in the garden, sang, ate, drank and messed around.

We visited Coventry Cathedral, Lady Godiva, St. Mary’s Guild Hall and the City Centre.

We went to the Transport Museum, where we saw old cars, bikes, sportcars, etc and we went on a simulated ride on the fastest car (Thrust 2). That was cool!

We went to see Packwood House and Gardens in Solihull. It was lovely! The famous Yew Garden must be one of the largest collections of yew trees in the world.In the Carolean Garden visitors can admire the stunning herbaceous borders and enjoy views across the gardens and parkland from the seventeenth century brick gazebos. Away from the formal gardens visitors can discover Packwood’s lake, which features a circular stroll through a wooded glade.

We went to see two films – Tarzan and Json Bourne. They were great!

We went to see Stowe House, which has one of the most beautiful landscape gardens in the country. Stowe House is a Grade I listed country house located in Stowe, Buckinghamshire. It is the home of Stowe School, an independent school and is owned by the Stowe House Preservation Trust. It was a long walk but all worth it!

We met HRH the son and his beautiful bride and had Chinese. Nice to see them again.


Went to Birmingham with my Mum and my brother with his kids. We walked around the City Centre, did some shopping and had some ramen soup.


For a real bonding time, my Mum and I stayed in Chester for three days. Chester is a city in northwest England, founded as a Roman fortress in the 1st century A.D. It’s known for its extensive, well-preserved Roman walls made of local red sandstone. In the old city, the Rows is a shopping district distinguished by 2-level covered arcades and Tudor-style half-timbre buildings. A Roman amphitheatre, with ongoing excavations, lies just outside the old city’s walls.

I think that’s about it, my ripples of thankfulness! I have to unpack now, do some laundry, then pack my bags again. This time is for India, for the son’s wedding, Indian version. Him Indoors and I are flying in two days’ time for a couple of weeks’ holiday. Have a great week everyone!

What made you smile this week?

For: Ripples of Thankfulness by Lizzi, Weekly Smile 30 #weeklysmile, Three Things Thursday: July 28, 2016Ski Dubai and Two Birthdays – Echoes of my neighbourhood 29, Thankful Thursday: Cherry on Top



Bees, Pie and Full Moon

*three things that make me smile: an exercise in gratitude – feel free to steal this idea with wild abandon and fill your blog with the happy*

happy with our garden with all the flowers and of course, the bees who come and visit

Him Indoors made a pie, meat and vegetable pie with “J heart L” – so thrilled to bits! the pie was delicious, too!

it was full moon two nights ago – so happy with my new camera for managing to take this (in my old camera, I usually get a blob)

So, what made you smile this week?

For: Underwater Zoo – Echoes of My Neighbourhood 28., Three Things Thursday: July 21, 2016, Weekly Smile 29 #weeklysmile