How Germany Views the U.S. Elections

The time has finally come. The U.S. presidential elections are tomorrow, and we will soon know who the future President of the United States will be. And if you are an American, you better go vote (I already did)!Over the past few months, it has been just about impossible to turn on the TV here in Germany without seeing coverage of the U.S. presidential election. I can only imagine what it’s like to actually be in the U.S. right now… *shudders* But if you know anything about Germany, then it should already be pretty obvious that Clinton is favored among Continue Reading

The State of Germerica #2

Back in June, there was so much going on that I decided to write a post about the State of Germerica – that is, the general state of what’s going on in my life. Well, a lot has gone on since then, and I am not sure how to organize that all into a sensible blog post, so here we go again. Today’s post will proceed by topic. First up on the docket is… Apartment HuntingI want to move! As of November 1st, Marco and I have been living in our current apartment for exactly 3 years. That’s a long Continue Reading

Top 5 Translation Tools (German<>English)

Being enrolled in a German master’s program, I do my fair share of reading and writing [in both English and German]. I also do a lot of translation work for my student job at the university. So, I would consider myself quite knowledgeable when it comes to online translation tools and websites. If you have taken a German class, then your teacher probably told you to never use a translation website. Instead, you should use a German dictionary. Sure, that is a good tip for gaining a deeper understanding of the German language, but translation dictionaries are quick, easy, and Continue Reading

Getting Married in Germany: Wedding Planning, Pt. 2

At the end of August, I wrote about the plans for our wedding in Germany, which will be held this year on December 30! There, I wrote that we had set a date and location, I had my dress, and we sent out invitations. Here is what we’ve gotten done since then: PhotographerOur wedding is small and simple, but finding a great photographer whose style we really liked was important for us. We sent emails to about 15 photographers in our city. We were pleasantly surprised when our two favorites quoted us reasonable prices for a three-hour photography package (digital copies Continue Reading

A Month of German Bureaucracy

I had four appointments at the Bürgeramt in the month of September. Yes, you read that correctly: four appointments in four weeks. Here’s a review of each of those appointments, just to give you an idea of how amazingly thorough (and sometimes redundant) German bureaucracy is for us foreigners. Appointment #1: Ausländerbehörde My student visa was going to run out on September 30th. However, due to other bureaucratic circumstances, I had to enroll for another semester at my university. So, I needed to renew my student visa for at least 6 more months. When I made this appointment per email, Continue Reading

Registering to Vote from Abroad & Requesting an Absentee Ballot

If you are an American living outside of the U.S., you need to request your ballot for the federal election by October 8, 2016 (in most states), even if you are already registered to vote.  Do it. Now. If you don’t know how to register to vote or request a ballot from abroad, then read on. Earlier this year, when the U.S. presidential campaign was just starting to heat up, I started to feel quite guilty about the fact that I have never voted. Having moved so often since the age of 18, it just always seemed so complicated and Continue Reading

How We Met (His Side)

My German fiancé and I met five years ago in September of 2011 during my study abroad trip to Germany. Last week, I told my side of the story. As promised, this week is Marco’s turn. Without further ado, here is Marco’s side of the story, written by the man himself: The night I met Courtney started when I went to watch soccer at a sports bar with a few of my coworkers. VfB Stuttgart was playing SC Freiburg. I just looked it up online, and it looks like Stuttgart won (although I don’t actually remember the game). After the Continue Reading

Our 5th Anniversary | How We Met (Her Side)

I met my German fiancé five years ago, in September of 2011. In those five years, we survived a long distance relationship, moved in together, got engaged, and are now planning our wedding! The one thing that I have never talked about on this blog, though, is how we met. Today, I will share my side of the story. Then, if you come back next week, you can read Marco’s side.  I came to Germany for a semester-long study abroad program on August 30, 2011. Although I was at a German university, all of the Americans took classes together. So, Continue Reading

Getting Married in Germany: Costs and Fees for Foreigners

How much does it cost for a foreigner to get married in Germany? I searched this exact question quite a lot after my German fiancé popped the question back in November. And although this question depends on your citizenship and the German city you are in, I still struggled to find any answers. So, now that I have registered my marriage and payed all the fees, I will tell you how much it cost for me, a US-American, to marry a German in Germany. Here is a breakdown of all the necessary costs and fees my fiancé and I had Continue Reading

August Favorites

Seeing as its the last day of August, I figured I would try something new as I reflect on the month: share all of my favorite things from August with you! This month I spent a lot of time stressing over paperwork and applications, then attempting to de-stress every evening in front of the TV. So, I have a mix of things I discovered and rediscovered over the past few weeks that all basically belong to the genre of “sit on the couch and eat junk food.” Enjoy! Movie: Victoria I watched this movie on a whim one evening while Continue Reading