living abroad

how everything is scarier until you try it

how everything is scarier until you try it

I've been living outside of my 'home' country for two and a half years now and have visited 26 countries - I wouldn't seem like a person who really is afraid to try new things, right?  Well, yes and no.  Not long ago, Danny and I got talking about the idea that when it comes to life and, well, pretty much everything, most things aren't really that bad when you take the plunge and give them a shot.  Whether we're talking about cliff jumping into clear seas in Greece or quitting your job and moving to a new country - it's all much scarier until you just start and get going.  Once you start jumping off the cliff, it's not so bad!  And once you start telling your boss about your new adventure and they get excited for you too, you realize, why was I freaked out about this?  Why did I spend all that time worried and worked up about nothing?  

eating lately

eating lately

Last summer I did two posts on recipes that we'd tried out and had especially liked over the past school year.  I broke it into two parts, breakfast and dinner and dessert, and shared photos, reviews, and links to the recipes.  This year we've continued eating those recipes I talked about last summer (in fact, all of the dinner recipes from last July are still in our current rotation!), but I haven't stopped adding new ones to the mix either.  Here's a roundup of our latest and greatest (we've tried at least 15+ others that I'm not listing here, although you can find them and a short review I wrote about them on this Pinterest board - it's where I collect every recipe we've tried out - at least if it has an internet home!), grouped by breakfast, dinner, and dessert.  Sorry the dessert category is extra light this time - I guess we've really taken it easy in that area, or else we've just been repeating old favorites (probably the latter!).

our weekly grocery haul

our weekly grocery haul

Like most people, we have to buy groceries each week, but I thought it might be interesting if this week we shared our meal plan for the week, everything we bought, and how much it cost.  I can be a pretty nosy Ned, so I find these types of posts on other peoples' blogs particularly interesting, and perhaps someone else will be the same.  

life lately: september to december

life lately: september to december

January might be almost over, but it's not too late to round up all my miscellaneous photos from the last four months.  In between work and some traveling, here's some of what we got up to from September to December...

top of 2017

top of 2017

We may be almost three weeks into 2018, but I'm not going to let that stop me from doing a little round up of some top highlights from last year, with a little peek into this upcoming year tacked onto the end, too.  Aside from the very first few days of 2017, which we spent in Colorado due to my brother's wedding, we spent the entire year abroad, mostly based out of Madrid, Spain.  During the school year, we taught English at Spanish Catholic schools, and during the summer, we taught English at a summer camp in Istanbul, Turkey. 

istanbul, turkey: everything we ate

istanbul, turkey: everything we ate

So, to be fair, this isn't everything we ate while in Istanbul.  If it were, this would be even longer than yesterday's post (about everything we saw and did in the city - see that here!), but this is pretty close to everything we ate while we were out and about doing our tourist thing.  For more of an idea of what we ate while on campus (where we lived and worked), take a look at this post from the beginning of the summer that has some photos of our cafeteria trays.

istanbul, turkey

istanbul, turkey

I'm finally (finally!) ready to share more from Turkey, this time from Istanbul.  If you need a little refresher, we spent two months last summer teaching English at a camp for kids located on a university campus on the outskirts of Istanbul.  We had weekends off from work, and packed most of them with sightseeing and eating out in the city (plus two trips further afield to Cappadocia and Ephesus).  In total, we saw and did about 20 different things in Istanbul, not counting our day trips to Büyükada (one of the nearby islands) and Kilyos (a beach and tiny village), both of which I really recommend.  Okay, into the streets of Istanbul we go!

thanksgiving 2017

thanksgiving 2017

Last week we celebrated our third Thanksgiving in Spain, which sounds crazy and like we've been here for a really long time, but actually, it hasn't even been two full years yet.  I got out my journal and decided to do an official count - we actually just passed the year and a half mark last month (a few days before Thanksgiving in fact).  Like it is with so many American expats worldwide, we went about our normal life on Thanksgiving.  It did so happen that neither of us had a class first hour, though, so we made muffins, but we probably would have done that regardless of the holiday.  After school, we made dinner and cleaned up quickly because, as we do every Thursday evening, we had Spanish at 7pm.  After our lesson (which takes place at our kitchen table), we Skyped with both our families, and then got off to bed, because on Fridays Danny has an early teachers class where he usually has to leave for school around 7:30am.