Sunday, 25 December 2011


The Christmas Song
by: She and Him
I have had a wonderful Christmas in Austria. I am so thankful, I couldn’t have asked for a better situation. Aside from the family festivities and many sweets I’ve been eating, my German has been noticeably improving. I am understanding more than I don’t. (I’d say maybe 80%.) 
I had a wonderful Skype with my friends Christmas Eve morning and with my mom that night. It’s strange, and I feel a little bad saying this, but my first Christmas away form home is actually one of by best. I feel so loved all around the world. Yesterday I couldn’t get the smile off my face. I can definitely tell that this year is turning out to be an instrumental part of the adult I’m becoming. It hasn’t changed my opinion that much or changed me, but I’ve matured. I’ve gotten more confident. At the same time my world has gotten smaller and larger. Everything seems accessible to me now and I’ve got a broader perspective on  everything. These last four months have been the hardest, but now it just feels like a dream, and I can’t wait to enjoy every part.

Anthropologie always knows how to do it up.
My Christmas Cards from Canada! 
Girls' night Skype!!!
From Left (top): Christina, Emily, Ali
From Left (bottom): Heather, Tess 
Christmas Socks from Home

My new hair.
(oops- already broke one of the Rotary Rules. haha)

We hang candy on the tree! 

Sparklers in the Tree!
At least the candles aren't real anymore.
Sandie, Lisa, Petra and Me,
and our Christmas Tree!
(please read aloud for full obnoxious rhyming effect)

Ornament from Canada
Canadian stereotype dispelled: No, I do not ride a polar bear to school
Christmas Eve fondue

Pretty Choco

Give Austrians Reeses and they will love you forever. 

Gift package from Ali and Cristina
They found all my favourite things! Such thoughtful presents. Love you two so much!
(and the Chai Tea from Teopia is amazing.)

Desi's (Lama) Holiday Chocolate Cake! (So yummy!)
Konni and Desi's (Seidle) presents!
(I seem to be getting a lot of tea... no complaints! Everyone knows me so well.)
CD from Konni. Signed by the musician when we saw him live.
(please refer to my November Post titled "Deadmau5 and Gluhwein"
Gifties from the Austrian Fam. Love them!
They got me spot on. 
Pyjamas and Canada swag from Rotary
Thanks so much Anne Marie!

The best for last.
A Handmade House Coat (by my mummy and my grandma).
They ordered the Chenille fabric in from New York and made it themselves.
Now thats what I call a Family Christmas. Amazing.

The Christmas Waltz
by: She and Him

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Presies from Overseas

A few things I got this past month.
Got this in a speckled dark grey (can be seen in my last post)
Very good quality basic
Fisherman's Sweater: American Apparel

What a treat! Love them. 
From Rotary (Specifically Anne Marie)
Thanks so much! Though I have no idea what it is....
From Mama! Also a truck load of Reeses Pieces...
(no actually Lululemon... the bag was enough of a reminder. I really enjoyed seeing it!)
Also in the package:
 My piano books (love!)
Knitting needles
Maple Syrup

Monday, 19 December 2011

Mozart's Crib

Current Fav. Artist: andrew bird
Song: "skin is, my"
*for fans of Rufus Wainwright
Listened to this on the bus this weekend enough times that I would really have annoyed someone that wasn't as completely enthralled as I was.

This weekend was the Salzburg Rotary Christmas get together and I have to say: my European independence is growing.
What I enjoyed more than I thought I would was the train+bus ride to and from Salzburg. I’m someone who enjoys a good 5 hours of independence, self selected ipod music, and personal introspection. It was really like a cleansing.
Once in the lovely town of salt I took a few minutes to enjoy a leisurely coffee while pondering over my map and deciding the best route to the hostel.

*Traveling tip: Leave yourself more than enough time to enjoy what would normally be a rather hectic procedure. (ie: finding the hostel by 16:00)

The weekend was oddly short. We had plenty of free time to meander around the shops and Chriskindelmarkt. And surprise to me; we went skating. I’m usually someone who would rather relax with a book by the fire with plenty of friction beneath me, but it was retrospectively worth it, (and I suppose at the time as well). Now I have bragging rights to say, “I went ice skating in Salzbug, what did you do this weekend?” It was great to see my other exchange student friends and all discuss our experiences (which when you are an exchange student mostly boils down to complaining about your problems). Lucky for me I have very few. Next event I will be participating in with Rotary will be Euro Tour in May so I will be making an effort to see by exchange student friends at some point before that (which is also an excellent excuse to travel). I think by the end of this year I will have been bitten by the travel bug. Once you realize how easy it is and get a little braver about the whole thing in general it just opens doors. 
Now as for my review of Salzburg. Lovely quaint little town. It was smaller than I expected, but that is sort of an Austrian thing. It’s a similar notion to when people say everything is bigger in Texas, well, everything is smaller in Austria. (Please don’t take that as a bad thing, I like it. Not everything, well most things really, shouldn’t be “super-sized” in my opinion.) This is a place I would love to spend a little more time in. An excellent vacation spot for anyone heading this way, like by best friend Heather! I’m not sure if i mentioned this, but my best friend from Canada is doing 3 months of Au Pair work very near to Salzburg! Here is her blog so you can check it out! (She’s talked about it a little bit.) So I will definitely have a reason to go back, excellent. It seems like my like is just falling perfectly into place lately. Even my German is getting noticeably better. We had said that hopefully by Christmas I would be understanding everything. Well, not everything, but I think I can confidently say most at the moment! (Which I am very proud of.) But after the calm always comes the storm (wow, thats pessimistic of me).
I doubt this will be the last post before Christmas, but Happy Holidays and enjoy it!  

Beret sistas

Chriskindelmarkt at the top of the castle.

From the top of the castle


Chocolate covered gingerbread-like dough with marzipan inside! Delicious!

Eislaufen! (Ice skating)

There are more pictures... we just have to wait until they are posted on FaceBook

I bought something from here...
Not telling what! 

Mozart's Crib.
(in the literal and Urban Dictionary sense) 

I need to work on my "kissie face" not enough LG practice...

Another Goodie by Mr. Bird: "Opposite Day"