Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Bruges, Belgium ...You Had Me at Hello

Friends have been asking me to share some of our adventures here and I wanted to assure you that I'm not just sitting here being homesick.  :)  So I'm back today to share some of the fun...

The moment you step foot on the cobble stone of Bruges, Belgium, you are wooed by its charm.  It stole my heart as we wandered the streets.  It's a place I never knew I wanted to visit and quite frankly, didn't know existed.  And now, it ranks high on my list of favorite places.  I'm not sure if it's because I didn't know what I was in for and surprised and delighted at every turn in the road and winding canal.  But I can tell you, it is magical.  I almost felt as if we were walking around a movie set.  It was just one of those places you see in pictures, but doesn't seem real.

Bruges has a rich history and its city has been left untouched to take you back in time.  The streets smell of chocolate and waffles and if you're a beer drinker, you may just need to sit a spell to enjoy.

The Old Chocolate Shoppe on Maria Straat - the BEST hot chocolate I've ever had!

This place stopped my husband in his tracks.  Wish I'd written down the name of it.

I know I sound like a travel brochure, but it truly captured my heart.  There is more to learn about this wonderful place than I will go into here.  I'm just here to share that it's definitely worth a stop if you're ever in the neighborhood.  We actually only stayed for one night.  It was a last minute plan.  Our first trip after being here for just three weeks.  There's a funny sense of urgency to travel any time we get the chance so we can fit in as much as we can while we're here.  And I'm so glad that sense of urgency took us to Bruges.

From the top of the Belfry.

Monday, April 28, 2014


I'm feeling a bit homesick today.  I think it's because I scrolled through some old photos and realized that I couldn't just jump up and visit my dad, mom, sisters, in-laws and friends.

This is the picture that did it.

It's not that it was some kind of revelation that I wasn't aware of, it just hit me at that moment.  We've been in Germany for about two months now and it's been hectic, challenging and exciting all rolled into one.  I'm not sure where to begin, but blogging is the closest to home I can get right now.  It was one my favorite things to do back home, so I thought, I'd jump on for a few minutes for a little therapeutic writing.

I've started blog posts in my head a million times since we've been here and I'm not quite sure where to take this little ole blog.  There's such a mixed bag of stuff I want to share...life as an expat, tips, travel, living as a renter and retraining my brain to live differently.  And of course, the love of making a home a home.  So I guess, I'll start with a little post I wrote on my thoughts the day our stuff arrived...

today was the day.  the big green truck containing all of our belongings finally arrived.  there was a feeling of excitement to start making a home here and getting settled into a regular routine.  as i unpacked the boxes, there were things that made me giddy to see again, then there were things that just simply made me cringe.  the stuff that weighed me down.  it's funny how when given the chance to start with a blank slate, how good it feels to be rid of stuff.  the more I unpacked, the less I wanted to unpack.  once i had all the necessities and all the things I really loved, i didn't want to put out the rest of the "stuff".  So instead of trying to make it work, I've decide to take the stuff that made me cringe and put it on a shelf in the basement.  then once i've finished organizing and tweaking, I'll peek back at it...I take that back, I think I'll just get rid of it.

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