Saturday, January 2, 2010

quick update!

And here I am again, a prisoner of the time!

Lots of exciting things have happenend in the last few weeks. I'll expand on that in a moment. I often feel as though I'm just updating everyone; sending a play-by-play over the big blue. I'll be honest... Yuck! That isn't interesting! Not that I'm 'blogging' to entertain, mostly it's to unload and to 'free my mind'. ;)

I've been realizing more and more lately how incredibly blessed I am and how impeccable God's timing is. I have had times of despair and longing for a different life or a different place or role in life, but right here in this moment I'm able to see His hand on every instant in my life and be oh, so very thankful. :)

You may know this already, but I'll share it anyway, I've decided to pursue nutrition next fall by studying in Denver, Colorado. I'll be reuniting with two of my dear friends and former roommates. I can only imagine (not to mention DAYDREAM) of the adventures the future holds!

After Thanksgiving we all prepare for the next holiday, right? Well, let's be honest, Christmas is a pretty big deal. And that, my friends, is UNIVERSAL. I am delighted to tell you I was able to enjoy the Montreux Christmas Market in Montreux, Switzerland (surely one of the most beautiful places on earth!) It was so lovely! There were so many vendors, but they weren't obnoxious vendors like you might find at a fair or something... they were Swiss and adorable. They all had the typical Swiss wooden A-frame house characteristics. There were pastries created as snowmen and Saint Nick, there were soaps and lotions, there were vendors selling fur slippers and hats, some people were selling beautiful handmade bags and totes, there were beautiful french decorations, custom-made family boards... the list could go on for a long time! Then there was the FOOD. Oh. My. Goodness. It was all so beautiful and ABUNDANT! My friend, Alberta, took me and we sat down and enjoyed a huge plate of potatoes with 'lardons' (aka: bits of bacon or pork fat) and lots of butter and I couldn't resist a bowl of CREAMY homemade mac 'n cheese. Needless to say, that wasn't the best way to handle the market! I desperately wanted a nap!! As you'lll see with the pictures though, it's a mighty good thing I didn't take a nap - the sunset over the lake was incredible. Montreux is this phenomenal place where you're seated at the edge of Lake Geneva and just across the Lake are the Swiss Alps. The mountains just explode out of the water and are so extremely majestic, they're breathtaking. If only you could have been there to enjoy it too!

I was able to fly home for Christmas for a few weeks! My flights were for the most part uneventful... long, but smooth. I got home after my 24 hours of travel and reunited with my parents. We ended up staying in a hotel downtown Des Moines as I had plans to celebrate Aedan's birthday (the boy I care for), their family is from Altoona and they were having a party the day after I landed. We stayed at the Embassy Suites and it was lovely and wonderful. I was delusional after traveling for so many hours and didn't notice anything unusual (other than everyone around me was speaking English!) The next morning I was enjoying my continental breakfast when I looked up and had to take a DOUBLE TAKE. Leif was standing right there! It was so special to have him and Ashley and Aidan there to welcome me home! It's true, I cried. Aidan hadn't forgotten me at all. He came right up to me and gave me hugs and kisses, we played and sang and had a jolly 'ol time while everyone finished their breakfasts.

One of my favorite dishes from the region I currently live in is called "Tartiflette". It's brilliant, and in the Savoie region it's inexpensive as well. Potatoes, butter, onions, garlic, fatty meat, bread, salad and good wine... doesn't it sound great?! Well, I thought it'd be nice to have some of my 'homies' over and treat them to a nice French dinner. Ah, I live for these moments! It was so much fun! Caitlin and Katelin came over a bit early and [thankfully] were able to help get things ready. We rocked out to Michael Bublé and Bob Marley and the Wailers -- not exactly French, but that's what I do in France! Haha. It was really perfect, well, I would have made it last longer, but all things considered, it was a really great night.

Okay, enough for now! On to packing! Pictures to come!

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