So this is our new home in Soerup! It is a duplex owned by Atec Group and we now occupy the left side! As you can see, it is a very Euro modern style, which is funny because it sits in the middle of a very traditional village neighborhood! It is also a big change from the style and lay-out of our house in Kalamazoo.
It has been interesting to settle in. While we Americans are used to big open floor plans, it struck us that every room in this home has a door. There is a door at the entryway, there is a door on the kitchen, and a door on the living room. So everything seems quite separated. I think it makes sense for energy efficiency in the winter because each room can be heated individually. All the doors will also make it convenient for jet-lagged guests to sleep in while I make coffee and plan great adventures for us!
We are adjusting to our new kitchen as well. Of course, we were very spoiled to have a newly remodeled kitchen in Kalamazoo! The appliances here are small. The refrigerator is like a large dorm fridge, not even as big as most apartment fridges I've seen. The oven looked so small that I took the dimensions when we were here in March and realized that many of my cookie sheets and baking stones would not fit! A sad moment for the cookie baker! But, amazingly we were able to fit everything in the kitchen that needs to be there!
Another interesting difference in this house and others I've seen here is that there are no closets! Not a single rack for hanging clothes and almost no hidden places for junk! We had a trip to IKEA soon after we received our container and bought clothes racks. We have three bedrooms upstairs and one is rather small so we have turned it into a walk-in closet. We are also embarassed to realize that we have WAY more clothing than is normal by German standards. They don't need as much space for clothes because they just don't have as much. That seems to be true about a lot of things- less is more!
We also discovered that light fixtures and bathroom "furniture" is considered personal property to be taken with you when you move. So, we had no bathroom mirrors or cupborads and no lights at all. The IKEA trip solved the bathroom dilemma but we have decided to hold off on light fixtures. The days are quite long here in summer- the sky is not dark until after 11:00 PM and there is full daylight by 5:00 AM! (I dread what this means in December but for now it is nice to have natural light).
So, today marks three weeks that I have been here. I am starting to feel settled into the house. I will post more pictures of it soon!