Girl Meets Bulgaria

Musings of an American expat in Bulgaria (with detours in Utah and Alaska)


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Thankful for the Little Things

Thankful for the Little Things_2

Whew! What a whirlwind week it has been (and will continue to be)!

Monday I turned 27. Wednesday marked my first week back in Bulgaria. And on Sunday, Vince and I leave for a few days wandering around Rome before our 2 week cruise.

I haven’t been bored, that’s for sure!

Because I’m home alone all day, I often have time to take random photos of things that make me happy. Hence the start of these “little things” posts.

The weeks that I find I took enough random photos to whip up a collage…you’ll see a post like this one (in some form or another) make its way onto the blog.

I think for most people, this type of thing is what Instagram is for (random photos of everyday stuff), but seeing as I don’t have a smart phone and probably won’t for quite a long time, this is my own version of Instagram–Whitneygram?

Enough talk. On to the captions… *clockwise from top left*

  • Cheap beer–A 2 liter of beer only costs about 3lv or so here (approx. $1.50). It’s not the best stuff I have ever tasted, but it’s decent. Oh, and did I mention CHEAP! 6% alcohol isn’t bad either (Utah friends you know why this matters).
  • Dark fall nail colors
  • Homemade tea–No idea what the two plants are. My MIL makes this amazing tea and sent us home with the ingredients after our weekend visit. You just throw it all in some water, boil for a bit, and BAM! yummy freakin’ beverage!
  • Reusable ceramic mugs (for said tea)
  • Travel planning (map of Rome)–I love it. Weirdly, however, I have done the least amount of planning for this trip compared to every other vacation I have ever been on. Granted, being on a cruise provides quite a lot of structure, so there is little to plan overall. Our plans? Walk. Take photos. Eat (buffets! room service! street food!). Lounge. Sleep.
  • Wild raspberry jam–Picked this amazing stuff up at Bachkovo Monastery. I’ve been eating it on buttered bread all week. It’s too delicious for words. Definitely stocking up next time we are down there.
  • Cozy slippers
  • Birthday dinner in the city at Made in Home. Such a great night.

 

What little things are you thankful for lately?

W.

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Fall/Winter Travel Plans

I simply cannot go a day without dreaming of my next travel adventure. It’s in my blood, I tell you!

Thankfully, After months of planning, Vince and my travel plans for this fall & winter are finally starting to come together. As if living and exploring in Bulgaria isn’t enough, we have to throw some international jaunts into the mix to keep things interesting. It’s one of the many joys of living in Europe.

First up is our long-awaited honeymoon…

Mediterranean Cruise

Less than 3 weeks from now, Ventsi and I will be bound for Rome. We are flying in a few days before our departure on the Crown Princess. We’ve been to Rome before as part of our last cruise, but we only had a day in port and we were definitely rushed. This time around we plan on savoring the sights, sounds, and tastes of the Eternal City. So far the only thing we have firmly planned is the Vatican’s tour of St. Peter’s Tomb–called the Scavi tour. On this amazing tour we will be led 3 stories directly beneath St. Peter’s Basilica to the reported resting place of St. Peter. We’ll be able to see and touch (and smell!) the actual foundations for the first church built on that spot. WOW! We were insanely luck to score tickets as they limit visitors to about 150 per day. Most people book months in advance, but I emailed the Vatican for S & Gs and they had 2 openings! I’m a history geek, so this rocks my socks. We didn’t get to see the Sistine Chapel last time, so we are definitely hitting up the Vatican Museums as well. We may try to find The Mouth of Truth–Roman Holiday fans will know why I want to go there!

We’ve been to many of the ports on our cruise (only Santorini, Olympia, Corfu, and Dubrovnik are new), so we mostly plan on hoofing it around the cities taking photos and generally enjoying the everyday scenery rather than booking full blown tours. We are, however, splurging for an excursion out of Naples. We didn’t particularly care for Naples the last time we visited; it’s not the safest place in the world. So rather than stay on the ship and lose out on seeing more of amazing Italy, we sucked it up and booked an excursion through Princess. Our 10-hour tour takes us to Pompeii for a guided tour; Sorrento for lunch and free time; and finally, to the isle of Capri via hydrofoil for a few hours of sun, sand, and sea.

We are pretty darn excited to finally be celebrating not only our honeymoon but our 1st anniversary as well. 2 weeks in the Med? Perfection!

Next up, a holiday getaway…

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2012 Fall Firsts

Sunday night family dinners are pretty important to my family. It’s especially nice for me when we get together because I am so rarely in Utah these days. My grandmother passed away at the end of July , so our dinners are definitely not the same anymore, but I enjoy them nonetheless.

Tonight we had a casual dinner out to celebrate my uncle’s birthday. After dinner we headed back to my grandpa’s house to have some pie and just spend some time together.

We (well, my cousin, M. to be specific) took this opportunity to carve our first pumpkin of the season. The second the top was removed and the seeds and ‘guts’ we pulled out, I knew it was officially fall. That smell is irresistible!

For my cousin’s birthday party next weekend we are carving pumpkins as well. I bought a knife kit from Target a few shopping trips ago (ah, there have been so many since being home), so I’m all set to get my carvin’ on!

I’m not generally a pie person, but I did have a bite of pumpkin pie tonight and it was delicious.

All in all it was a fun night with the fam. I only have a few more weeks left to spend time with everyone and top enjoy autumn in Salt Lake City.

Autumn in Sofia awaits my arrival!

W.

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