An End of Year Wrap Up [November & December 2016]

Farewell 2016, it’s been real. Let’s finish it off with a recap from November & December. It’s been a whirlwind couple of months full of memorable moments and adventures.

I did some exploring around the city and saw an incredible sunset,  we celebrated my host nephew’s 2nd birthday and gathered together with friends to celebrate and share traditions of Thanksgiving.

The main organization I’m working with hosted both Startup Week and Startup Weekend  all in one long week and I got the opportunity to participate in a few sessions and meet some new people.

Then December rolled around and once again, I participated in Dressember. This being the 4th year I’ve participated, I tried something new this year and did it by alternating between two different dresses for the whole month.

Early in December, I was able to travel with some friends to visit Iasi, Romania for an overnight trip. It was a great little adventure away to change up the routine and scenery. Then, shortly after that trip I celebrated my 34th birthday.

 

December also brought a fun and festive spirit as the city center was decorated with an abundance of holiday lights.

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I also had a great opportunity to do a workshop about Mobile Apps in a nearby village. Later that day a friend and I did some fun exploring in that community.

 

A quick visit to Balti was in order before the holidays to visit my host family and some friends as we celebrated the holiday season a little early with an incredible meal along with good hospitable company.

To wrap it all up, as I had shared in my previous post, I made a surprise visit home to celebrate Christmas and New Years with family and friends.

Cheers to the 2017 new year ahead!

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Celebrating America’s Independence Day in Moldova

I decided to stay at site and home for the July 4th holiday, hoping I’d have the opportunity to share the US holiday with my host family and some local friends.

My original plan of making dinner for my host family on July 4th didn’t quite work out as I had planned. Plans unfolded as the day went on and I found myself invited to a friends house to have dinner with her and her children. I was so grateful for the invitation and to share some US traditions with them. I even brought some red, white, and blue balloons for the kids and we had lots of fun discussing the different kinds of foods Americans eat on this holiday and playing with the balloons.

After dinner with our USA celebratory balloons at my friends house with her son.
After dinner with our USA celebratory balloons at my friends house with her son.

Then the next day, one of my site mates organized a 4th of July picnic for our host families to celebrate with us together. He prepared hamburgers, I taught my host sister how to make deviled eggs and we made a version of strawberry shortcake but without the strawberry part and substituted raspberries instead. You’ve gotta work with what you have. 🙂

Me with my host mom and host dad at the American BBQ.
Me with my host mom and host dad at our American BBQ.
One of my site mates host brothers who was really happy about the cheeseburger and everyone being together.
One of my site mates host brothers who was really happy about the cheeseburger and everyone being together.

It was really nice to have our two host families together for the first time and some other Peace Corps volunteers to share in this holiday and celebrate together.

Note: Some of us PCVs from Balti are in the featured image above with a random neighborhood kid in the tree, a host brothers finger in the photo, and my host family thinking we’re hilarious… this pretty much sums the day up.