Sunday, January 5, 2014

Christmas Day - Opening the Presents

 It was another excellent Christmas at our house.  We'll show you just a few of the photos taken while opening presents, then jump on to the rest of the day spent enjoying the new toys and eating the great dinner my wife made.

Here is Troy opening a present.
 Teo enjoying one also.



And now, let's move on to the rest of the day in the next post!

Christmas Day - The Guitars

 One of their favorite gifts this Christmas was the guitars.  Here is their Uncle Ron tuning Teo's for him.
 Both boys kept close tabs on their guitars all day - it was obvious they were a big hit with them.

 Troy appears to know quite a bit about how to hold a guitar already!

Christmas Day - Troy the Viking

 As he did with his birthday,  Troy only asked for one thing for Christmas.   Looking through the Toys R Us magazine, he circles a Viking helmet and axe.   So we ensured he got it!

 (Note to Troy when you reach your teens:  that only works for reasonably priced requests)
 What a super model this guy is!



Christmas Day - Velo Bikes

 One of their favorite presents this Christmas was the Velo bikes.  Troy received a green one, Teo a blue one.  As soon as the presents were unwrapped, they took them out front for a spin.
 Teo cruising the neighborhood.
 Preparing for dinner, the bikes came back inside.  Troy graciously posing for a photo with his new bike.
 The Velo bikes have no pedals or gears.  They are designed to teach kids balance in order to shorten or eliminate the training wheel phase.
 Teo's turn!
 It is usually hard to get him to sit still enough for a photo, but he was in the right mood to pose with his new ride.

 A natural born model, he is.
One more Grandpa!

Christmas Day - Dinner with Teo

 Teo is our great eater.  He's the first one to the table when it is meal time, sometimes even beating the "Dinner's Ready!" announcement, as he did on Christmas.
 But he did get to enjoy some caramel popcorn while awaiting dinner.  We knew he'd eat dinner no matter what,  he has a great appetite.
 Watching TV while he waits.


 Okay, maybe another bite of popcorn.
 Dinner's on!   He does really really well at feeding himself for a two year old.  And he enjoys his meals.
But it had been a very long day without a nap, and tiredness was setting in.  He wasn't going to turn loose of that roll, though.

Christmas Day - Dinner With Troy

 We cherish the meals we share with Troy being his four year old self.  He gives it his best effort, but he is not much of an eater.  He barely touches his food regardless of the amount of coaxing we do.
 But he does tell some very animated stories!
 And tries to get the food to jump right in there.
 And pontificates as well as any Yale graduate.
 He enjoys the other diners.
 And finally, he gets serious about eating.
Well, maybe for a minute anyway.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Hasen-Brau AGWW Wick-Werke Beer Steins

 A few years back, I inherited a set of German beer steins from my mother, who received them from her parents who lived in Germany in the 1950s.  The set consists of 3L, 2L, 1L, and .5L steins.
 I did some research online and found these are for Hasen-Brau beer from Augsburg, Germany.  "Hasen-Brau" is "Hare Brew" in English.  This is a close-up of the 3L and 2L.  I have yet to see any steins online with this exact design.  All that I have found so far seem to be of a more modern design.
 A close-up of the back side of the 3L.  They are in untouched condition - I haven't even dusted them!
 I also did research into the symbol on the bottom - AGWW.  This is the mark of Wick Werke A.G., a company that existed 1921 to 1984.  Prior to that, the predecessor company was Merkelbach & Wick which was founded in the town of Grenzhausen (later merged with its neighbor to become Hohr-Grenzhausen) in 1880.  The company specialized in beer steins, ewers, and vases.  Online, the Porcelain Marks And More site states this particular mark was used 1921-1937, while the Stein Marks site says it was used 1921 through the mid 1950s.  The latter rings true to me since my grandparents were in Germany in the mid 1950s.  I am assuming these mugs date to that era.
 On the back is this logo reading "Zinn Giesser Qualitats Marke".  If anyone know any more about these steins, please drop me a note as I'd love to know more!

Also...from my research online I believe the entire set is worth no more than $100, so I'm not worried about becoming the target of theft by posting this.  :-)
 Hasen-Brau still exists in Germany, and here is their website!  Basically, the headline states that the site is under construction, so I'll be checking back regularly.
 I also followed the address listed at the bottom of the website using Google Maps and found that location does indeed exist in Augsburg, where the "A" mark is to the left.
 A close-up of the build does appear to be a modern brewery.  The green trucks also match the green Hasen-Brau trucks I see in photos of the city of Augsburg.  Though I don't read German, I have stumbled across some photos of what appear to be the original Hasen-Brau brewery being torn down recently.  That's a shame as it was a much more elegant building than the typical metal industrial building shown here.
 I also found that Wick-Werke made some very fine looking containers, such as this one.  It appears to be from the early 1900s and is going for about $300-400.  A much nicer piece (and worth more $$) than what I have.
The AGWW company folded in 1984 and the factory that made the steins I have was torn down in 1999.  I have not been able to find any photos of that factory.

Again, if you have any info on the steins, on Hasen-Brau, or on AGWW please drop me a note!