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Sunday, January 26, 2014

It is COLD


Wow, it's been COLD. Brrrr. This winter is definitely kicking our asses here in the Northeast. But I know plenty of other areas of the US (the Midwest and even some areas in the South where they aren't used to the cold at all) haven't done much better. 

This week we had temperatures that ranged from -5F (= -20C) to 17F (= -8C) as the HIGH. Add the windchill in and it feels a thousand times worse than that. Right now it is 17F and it says feels like 2F (so that's -16C) Brrrrr.

We have also had some snow but luckily not too much. But with this crazy cold it is hard for the cities to keep the roads clear even when it doesn't snow all that much. Nothing ever melts whatsoever. I am definitely ready for spring but I have a feeling we still have quite some time to wait before that happens.

Only one more week to go in January. This year is already flying by it seems. I had Monday off and took care of a bunch of stuff around the house (laundry, unpacking, vacuuming, finally putting away the Christmas deco etc) Worked yesterday, Saturday, and after work we went to the movies to see "The Wolf of Wall Street". Really enjoyed the movie. 

Today we are taking a quick trip to Yonkers to go to the Yardhouse there for lunch. Always enjoy hanging out there. Afterwards we will come back home, catch up on some TV shows and watch the Grammys. Should be a good day. 

My mom is doing well which is also good. Been talking to her almost every day for a little while which has been nice. Also been in touch with my dad and aunt a lot so definitely staying in the loop which is good. She has various types of physical therapy every day to get her strength and movement back. I will probably head back to Austria in April. Just need to see how everything develops and how much longer she ends up being in the hospital. After the hospital she will be transferred to a true rehab facility where she will also be for a while. Will need to coordinate all that once we have a better idea of timing. Until then can't really book anything.  

Mail Update: No mail has gone out. :( Received a letter/owe a reply to: Jessica/DE, Charles/TN and Nina/WA. 

Posted by Hanna at 12:34 PM in Food and Drink, Weather | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Monday, January 20, 2014

Back to the daily grind and catching up with things

TeaCan't believe a week ago I was on the plane flying back here to the US. Already a whole week flown by. The first week back was very busy at work but that always tends to be the case, especially when we are short staffed on  top of it. Worked on Saturday as well and managed to catch up somewhat. 

I am off today as I am working the upcoming Saturday as well. Used today to catch up with everything that needed to be done around the house. Finally took down the Christmas decorations, ornaments etc. Finished unpacking my suitcases, organized and put things away, did two loads of laundry, the dishes, kitty litter, took out the garbage, vacuumed. I got up around 9.30am and been going nonstop. About 3.45pm now and I figured I should sit down real quick and get a post together before it's time for dinner. Still need to take a shower too.

So not really a relaxing day off today but it felt good to get things done. Everything's been a bit upside down since we didn't really have a normal routine for weeks now. Went to Cape Cod, then the next day I flew straight to Austria. Yesterday we had a pretty relaxing day though. Slept in, went grocery shopping and then for lunch. Afterwards we spent the rest of the afternoon/evening catching up on our recorded TV shows since we haven't really done that in ages either. 

We will see what tomorrow and the rest of this work week brings. It is supposed to get really cold here in the Northeast again, I missed the last cold spell as I was in Austria when I happened. Not too upset about that but this next one I won't be able to get around unfortunately. Oh well. 

Been talking to my mom the last three days and it's nice that she is well enough now that I can talk to her on the phone. Helps with being far away. They moved her to a different part of the hospital mid week and started some rehab procedures, helping her relearn and train a lot of movements again. 

Mail Update: On Tuesday letters went out to: Kimber/Canada and Caroline/Scotland. Received a letter/owe a reply to: Jessica/DE. 

Posted by Hanna at 03:53 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Monday, January 13, 2014

It's time again


And already almost time to get back on the plane to fly back to the US. The 10 days went by super fast But I guess that is always the case. I am happy to say that even only having been here for ten days I have definitely seen major improvements seeing my mom every day. It's nice to see that she is getting better. Time will take care of the rest.

I am hoping to come back in early April and I imagine that by then things will have changed quite a bit. It's hard to be this far away but it was good to be here for a little while anyway and April isn't all that far away so it should be fine.

Met up with my friend Lydia on Saturday in St. Poelten after my daily visit at the hospital. And on Sunday (yesterday) we went to a Heurigen restaurant with my dad and our friends Anneliese & Andi (see picture)  

Had lots of yummy food while here (anyone who is friends with me on Facebook, sorry for all the food pics *g*) which was nice. Figured why not put a positive spin on being here and enjoy some delicious food if I am already here.

Not too much else to say or add reall. In less than 2 hours I am going to be on the plane back to NY. And then tomorrow it is back to work and back to my everyday life in the US. I of course expect to be in touch with my dad and other people here in Austria quite regularly but all in all as they say, the show must go on.   

Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Kimber/Canada and Caroline/Scotland.

Posted by Hanna at 02:50 AM in Austria , Family, Travel | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Cooking with my dad


Another quick update from Austria. Been visiting my mom at the hospital every day. Yesterday I even ended up going twice, just the way it worked out. Seeing her every day I can definitely see the day to day improvements which is nice. Trying to make the most of my time with her here obviously.

Other than that not too much going on really. The weather has been going back and forth between gloomy/cloudy/foggy and occasionally sunny but still rather mild for January. Nothing like the crazy cold that is hovering over the US. Which is fine, don't need that here obviously.

Yesterday I also met up with my friend Anneliese for a bit and today my dad and I decided to cook this afternoon. Neither one of us are usually big cooks and neither of us are all that familiar with where my mom keeps everything in the kitchen here *g* so it was definitely somewhat of an adventure. But it all worked out ok. We made "faschierte Laibchen" which are basically seasoned meat patties. They came out pretty decent considering it was our first try. The consistency was a bit off, especially in the second batch where we forgot the egg, but all in all they tasted pretty good. :)

Tomorrow we are going to head to the hospital a little bit earlier and are planning later on to head to a Heurigen restaurant.

It's been nice to spend some time with my aunt who I haven't seen as much lately. She was super sweet and also gave me some money towards the flight. Also thank you to Esther who mailed me a card here at my parent's place. Thanks to everyone who has been asking about my mom. It's definitely appreciated.

Mail Update: Received a letter/owe a reply to: Kimber/Canada and Caroline/Scotland.

Posted by Hanna at 01:35 PM in Austria , Family, Food and Drink | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Hello from Austria

SchnitzelA quick hello from Austria and an update on everything. I managed to escape the crazy snow of the Northeast just in time to get to Austria which was good. My flight actually ended up landing an hour earlier which was nice. Had a delicious DO&CO catered meal on Austrian Airlines nonstop New York to Vienna. So under the circumstances it was a fairly pleasant trip.

Yesterday when we landed the weather was actually pretty nice and sunny. Today it was super foggy and cold. That wet type of cold.  But all in all compared to the way the weather has been in the Northeast of the US I can't complain too much.

I have seen my mom twice so far, yesterday and today, and all things considered she is definitely doing very well. She recognizes everyone and can communicate, even though her voice is still a bit faint of course. She can even move her left hand a bit which is great news so it's definitely a good thing and could be so much worse.

It's still hard and things feel out of sorts, being here by myself in the winter when I usually come over in the summer, and only having my dad at home and not my mom. But it's important to know that things are going well and time will help heal everything else. The important thing to keep in mind is that her brain functions seems completely fine and her personality is there underneath everything. Everything else can be worked on with rehab and other things.

Today my dad and I went for a delicious lunch after we visited with my mom in the hospital. And afterwards we went to see some other relatives before returning back home. Right now we are watching a repeat of the Vienna Philharmonic's New Year's Day concert that we both missed this year with everything else going on.      

Mail Update: Sent letters on Jan. 2 to: Lotte/Denmark, Celia/MA and Charles/TN. Received a letter/owe a reply to: Kimber/Canada and Caroline/Scotland.

Posted by Hanna at 03:52 PM in Austria , Family, Food and Drink | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack