July 20, 2017

Currently: Romanian Edition Part VII

A Saturday morning
In an effort to get back on the (blogging) horse, I've opted to return with a Currently post. I have lots and lots to tell you about, but I'll start with a peek into what life is like these days. Hopefully, I can attempt (yet again) to get some type of blogging schedule put into place, but we shall see.

Anyways, here's what my life "currently" looks like...

Reading: I am currently, and very slowly, working my way through Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. The second part of the title is "How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead". Woah, guys, woah. This book is incredible and very heavy, which is why I'm going through it so slowly. It's a little scary. Vulnerability is a little scary sometimes.

A quote from the book's Amazon description..."Brown explains how vulnerability is both the core of difficult emotions like fear, grief, and disappointment, and the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, empathy, innovation, and creativity. She writes: 'When we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives.”

Purpose and meaning...those are the big ones, no? I think she's right on track when she aims to discuss how we can only find that purpose and/or meaning when we open up and connect...and how do we connect? By being vulnerable with others. I'm not always the best at being vulnerable, partially because I like living a quiet, private life, but I can definitely attest to some of my strongest connections coming from times when I was most vulnerable. I could go on and on, but rant over...for now. Anyways, I'm only on the third chapter, but I'd already recommend it...or anything by Brene Brown. She's amazing...oh and she's a social worker so there's that ;)

Eating: Last weekend, there was a Hungarian festival in town. Traditional dancing, music, handmade items, and FOOD. I realize that you might be confused as to why there is a Hungarian festival in Romania and I'd love to explain, but I suck at history. Long story super short, Transylvania was once ruled by Hungarians so there are lots of Hungarians in this area. One of the things I absolutely love about Transylvania is the diversity...Romanians, Hungarians, Saxons (Germans), Roma (Gypsies), and of course, the foreigners. When I'm in other parts of Romania, I genuinely miss seeing the different people and hearing the different languages.

ANYWAYS, one of my favorite Hungarian treats, that you can't necessarily get all of the time, is kurtoskalacs. Don't ever ask me to pronounce that word. I butcher it every time. But OMG, this is a life changing treat. So dang good. I've posted pics of these before and I'll probably post many more pics in the future. Here's a short video that shows how they make them. The only difference from this video to how I've always seen them made is that they cook them over an open, charcoal type "grill". It's fun to watch the whole process...and then, of course, even more fun to EAT them!

Poppy field in a nearby village
Thinking about: Romanian summer school. On Monday, I will start a two-week Romanian course...as a student. A few people have asked me whether I'm teaching it or taking it, which makes me laugh really hard. To clarify, I am not teaching it. I've definitely come a long way in my Romanian, but to be able to teach a course...NOPE. I can understand a lot, but I continue to majorly struggle with speaking so I'm hoping that this course will help with that.

The course takes place in Sibiu, a city about 1.5 hours southwest of Sighisoara, which I'm excited about. I've been there a handful times, but staying there for two weeks will allow me to become more familiar with it. It will also be a nice change of pace regarding routine and schedule. Aside from studying, I'm hoping to relax a bit, read a lot more, and do some reflecting and planning for the upcoming months/year.

An orchestra from Holland strolled through Sighi recently and decided to play in the citadel square.
Listening: As always, my current playlist is ALL over the place. This song has been on repeat though, I must admit. It's not new, but I just love it. A few other songs on the playlist these days...

Til the End of Time by Cody Carnes ft. Kari Jobe
Feel It Still (Lido remix) by Portugal. the Man
I'll Find You by Lecrae ft. Tori Kelly
Set on Fire by MAGIC GIANT

I've also been listening to some audio books before bed lately...thanks to a generous pal's sharing of an Audible account. I finished Option B by Sheryl Sandberg, which was another incredible and somewhat heavy one. Had I read the physical book, I would have underlined SO much of it. And again, the second part of the title is pretty amazing, "Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy".

I'm currently listening to I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson, which I read a year or so ago and absolutely LOVED. I finished it in a couple of days because I just couldn't stop reading. It wasn't what I expected at all, which is nice sometimes. Anyways, it's a little lighter than Option B, which means I can fall asleep without analyzing life, love and other mysteries! Shout out to any old school Point of Grace fans...Christi, Lindsay, Sara...where ya at??

A "new" door in town that I just noticed for the first time
Watching: I've been rotating through three different shows lately. Care to guess the first one...? Gilmore girls, yep. I actually went through a period of time recently where I didn't watch it at all. It was kind of weird and I'm glad that I'm back with my pals...yes, I think they're my friends. It's fine.

Number two is Everwood, which is probably my second favorite show of all time, but one that I don't watch nearly as often. Partially because it's not as easily accessible online and partially because it's just a little heavier than GG. I have the DVDs, but definitely forgot to bring them to Romania. Anyways, it's such a good show and, I think, quite unique in it's storytelling. It's more of a drama, but the storyline is just SO GOOD. I'm still bitter about the fact that it only lasted for four seasons. PS. if you plan to watch it, grab the Kleenex.

I also just started watching Supergirl, which is very unlike me. One, I don't start new shows very often, and two, this is not the type of show I usually choose to watch...or end up enjoying. However, I watched it with some teens the other day and actually found myself getting into it. They were on episode 6 or so and I just kept asking those annoying questions that people ask when they haven't seen previous episodes. "So that's her sister? How old is she? Are they dating? What are they talking about?" Yeah, I was that person. They patiently answered the first few questions, but then just gave me the look of "just watch it from the beginning and hush". So I decided to start from the beginning, and I must say, I don't hate it.

Playing UNO at International Kids' Camp.
Loving: For some reason, this is always the hardest part for me to write. Not that I don't love anything, but I just feel like there are so many things to choose. I tend to be a fan of "the little things" so sometimes the things I love feel too small to write a big paragraph about. I think I'll just list some of things I've been loving lately.

Experimenting with making iced coffee. Wearing Toms every single day. English Camp connections. Playing Uno with kids. Good conversations with teens. Live music in front of the International Cafe. Saying hi to familiar faces as I walk through town. My view from House on the Rock. Starting conversations with English speaking tourists. Coffee. Eating meals outside. FaceTime with my family and friends. Successful Romanian conversations. Listening to really loud music through headphones.

See, it's the simple things. Thanks for reading...until next time.

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