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  1. Past Hour
  2. With tears in my eyes, I have to cancel for this evening.  I have completely lost my voice!  Super annoying. Enjoy and hope to see you all soon! Ashley
  3. Three-word story

    Vulcan butt cheeks
  4. Three-word story

    from Spock's pointy
  5. Why are you happy today?

      - apparently not!!! Well spotted Wulfrun, but the point remains that Clive could still do his own ironing!
  6. Cutting tree roots from neighbours tree?

    Getting the law implemented is such fun... it excludes common sense pragmatic solutions. I am sure that cutting a few roots from one side of a ruddy great tree will not kill it. I am not a tree surgeon however. Would anyone notice the OP doing the necessary? Would they film him in flagrante and report him? To whom? FF is of course right but I have a sneaky feeling we know where that will lead and how fast. Wishing the OP luck with this one. Who does not have a tree story in Germany?
  7. Help with enrolling kids in Kindergarten

      Thank you for the suggestion!
  8. Elternzeit general questions

    Yes, submit Elternzeit request to employer no later than 7 weeks before the estimated due date. My company asked me to provide a letter from my wife's doctor confirming the estimated due date. Your Elternzeit will actually start on whatever day the baby is born. Employers and the Bürgeramt Elterngeldstelle know to take this into consideration.   Yes, you can definitely split 1st birth month, go back to work, and then take a subsequent birth month. For example, if your kid is born July 15th 2018, you can take 1 month July 15th to Aug. 15th, and then another month, say Dec. 15th to Jan 15th 2019 and get Elterngeld for 2 months. I did it. Your employer would need to approve. You and the mother can take up to 14 months combined with Elterngeld, until 1 calendar year after the date of birth. Note, you need to take at least 2 months to be eligible for Elterngeld. Elterngeld 2 is more flexible, and can be taken for a longer period (less money).   To apply, fill in the form from your local Bürgeramt Elterngeldstelle and attach all relevant info (baby birth certificate, 12 prior months pay stubs, passport, Anmeldebescheinigung, Health Insurance card copy, Social Insurance info, whatever else they list in the form).   Talk to your city's Elterngeldstelle directly, don't count on your boss or company's HR department knowing anything.
  9. Three-word story

    removing the cling-ons
  10. Elternzeit general questions

    IIRC, the months of Elternzeit start from the child's day of birth, which means that every month of Elternzeit begins on the day of the month your child was born (and not automatically on the first of the month or on any other date of your choosing). So if your child is born on April 25th, every and any month of Elternzeit for that child's parents would begin on the 25th of the respective month, i.e. April 25th, May 25th, June 25th. That means you can't start Elternzeit after (just) two weeks of vacation (e.g. on May 9th); you could only start it on April 25th or wait until May 25th.
  11. Three-word story

    into the Tardis
  12. Three-word story

    walking their dogs
  13. I did SO much research on this, though my predicament is different than yours. My mother is a bit younger, but I'm an only child and trying to plan ahead. What I found is more or less what Engelchen has written: visas in Germany are only issued for specific categories (freelancer, language learner, medical professional, and so forth) and there is none for "retired person with family in the country," basically. That's the first biggest obstacle. And as far as I could glean, the hardship exemption is extremely rare to come by, or nigh on impossible. If you have siblings in the US, for example, in all likelihood the foreigners' office will see no reason the elderly parents can't live with them. And family reunification, where it is permitted, goes in the other direction -- reuniting spouses, or minors with parents.   The next issue, of course, even if we can get our parents here legally, is the prohibitive cost of health insurance, which will have to be private. Coming from the US, though, that might be six-in-one, half dozen to the other... Anyway, I feel for you. It's really hard and I haven't been able to come up with anything. If you do, please post it here!
  14. Joining the Bundeswehr

      I dont know about that, I guess the occupied countries would be thrown out of the EU. 
  15. Today
  16. Joining the Bundeswehr

    If Lego Man has a German passport, he is a German citizen, so Germany is his country. He's just never lived here. He should maybe visit Germany, make some personal enquiries (including of the Bundeswehr) and then think about his desired career move some more. NB: Germany's a bit colder than South Africa.
  17. Three-word story

    from street corners
  18. Logistics of bringing retired mother to Germany

      Can you provide objective reasons why this care cannot be provided by others?
  19. What irritated you today?

    Stray cat that feeds at nextdoor's restaurant for ferile felines has just vomited on my garden wall.
  20. Tax return for non-Kleinunternehmer self-employed

    Yes you can enter the health insurance cost. I don't have the form in front of me so I can't tell you which field. If you are getting an error then you might be entering it into the wrong place.
  21. Joining the Bundeswehr

      My personal theory is that if Putin were to wake up tomorrow and decide to annex all land up to the border of france, we would all just complain a bit on the internet then start learning russian. France is another matter for obvious reasons. But no third country would do more than verbally protest with great indignation   To the OP: joining the army of another country because you want to get out of your country is probably a (really) bad idea.
  22. Passive-aggressive notes

    But you do seem to have retreated to passive aggressive land in response to aggressive onslaught. I would hope for better from you.    Without question the dialogue is disrespectful towards you. I hope you can step back and keep your balance and a clear mind. The oscillation of the elderly between behaving like a child and acting like a adult is wearing for all parties and often unrelenting.    I think that that we (i.e. humanity) are not living longer but taking longer to die. I don't think that society has a handel on this and the individuals involved do not have the orientation points that traditionally provided comfort and reassurance over generations for all sides. Who has what role and at what point is quite often unclear. It is not all necessarily good. Good luck!
  23. Jewish guy* films his own Antisemitic attack in Berlin

      Care to break it down? What makes North Korea a "rogue state"?    I'm not disagreeing but curious. I mean, it can't just be nukes because so many have them.   Human rights violations? Also found almost everywhere.
  24. Joining the Bundeswehr

    Do you especially want to join the army, or just want to come to DE? You could also do an Ausbildung (also within the Bundeswehr, or just come for the summer and find a job, and see if you like it here first. Both my husband and his brother worked after school at the Hamburg airport , its a "proper job" so comes with pension and medical aid. BIL worked while studying.   You could also come and work a while before applying for an Ausbildung Sept 2019, you can compare your school leaving certificate (if not Abitur) here and search for Südafrika.   What you you want to do careerwise? That is probably the most NB question, then you can figure out what the best way to it is.   You will need health insurance though, even as a German...   You can convert your South African drivers licence to a German one.   Do you have aunts / uncles / grandparents here? What do they suggest? Could you stay with/near them in the beginning? Would help a lot compared to arriving here alone.
  25. Elternzeit general questions

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