Saturday, February 25, 2012

Wroclaw, Poland

these little gnomes, posed differently, are all over!

I just loved the colors of the Old Town

A posing in the Old Town

Thursday, February 23, 2012


The Germans take their holidays seriously, especially the Catholic holidays. The end of last week/beginning of this week was Fasching, known in other countries as Carnival/Karnevale.

Donnerstag/Thursday: Old Women Day
Montag/Monday: Rose Monday
Tuesday/Dienstag: Fat Tuesday
Wednesday/MIttwoch: Ash Wednesday

Thursday through Wednesday, the Germans were out of school and most, out of work. When I got home from the gym on Thursday afternoon, swarms of kids were running around Kasel. This is typical for the nicer seasons, but not as much in Winter. Thursday was different though because it was a holidays. All the kids were dressed up and carrying bags filled with goodies (almost like Halloween, but during the day and not all candy - granola bars, crackers, stuff like that). They went from door to door singing a song (I don't know what it was?) and getting treats. Of course, I didn't know this was commonplace so I had no treats and disappointed the two large groups of kids that knocked on my door (one group of kids ages ranging from 2-7, the other 8-11). On Monday, there was a celebration and parade in Ruwer, the neighboring town. I wasn't planning on going, but Justin and his family knocked on my door on their way down to the party, so I went with. I was one of the few not dressed up for the occassion - most adults were dressed up. Lots of beer and German food - it is a holiday afterall, so Justin and I shared some pommes mit mayo :) Unfortunately, the party was mid-day so A missed it. In the years past, we have celebrated Fasching with friends, gone out, dressed up, but not this year. Maybe next!

First Day of Fasching, Donnerstag - This is the infamous Justin. I of course didn't get my phone out in time to take pictures of all the other cute kids, but Justin stuck around to sing the song AGAIN and pet the pups! Justin, along with his siblings and Grandma, live at the end of our street and walk by our house at least 4 times a day, often times more. Justin and Nina (the other 2 are too young) stop every time, come up on the porch and talk to the dogs and me and pet the pups. When they see Boston and Riva, no matter how far away, they scream their names. It is ADORABLE. They call Boston, Bos. I wish you could hear them say it, it is just adorable. And they call me, Ka-Zee. No English, of course, but since they are young, they speak slowly and pronounce things fully so we can usually understand everything they say!

In other Rapalje news, we officially told Axel that we're moving, so I guess that makes it official. Charleston Bound in June. A is in Greece today (lucky!). We are having sushi night at our house on Friday, which I am STOKED about. The sushi we made was THAT good :) We are heading to a new Farmers Market on Saturday morning in France which supposedly has an awesome selection of cheese (which we aren't eating!) and wine! And I got invited to walk with the Kaselite ladies in the mornings with the pups :) I love having neighbors that we like.

And rapalje.recently in pictures...

Birthday Flowers + some amazing smelling Hyacinths!

Our Fat Tuesday Celebration: Belgian Beer! A went to the Netherlands the other day for work and brought me back my FAVORITE Belgian Beer! He also picked himself up some Deliriums and more...What a guy :)

On one of my many walks with the dogs, I found this frozen set of stairs! Just thought it was crazy!

This was the best thing we ate in Turkey: Turkish Pizza. Basically just delicious crust and cheese... no sauce.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

No, we're not Catholic.. but...

we're giving something up for Lent anyways... animal products. That's right - going Vegan for Lent!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Istanbul, Turkey

hagia sophia

hagia sophia - originally christian

sooooo many fishers, all day, everday. it was crazy!

on the ASIA side of Istanbul!! We went just for lunch!

turkish coffee... which basically requires chewing

hagia sophia

waiting in line at hagia sophia. worth the wait and the money.


blue mosque

blue mosque

hagia sophia

hotel balcony view, where we spent LOTS of time because of the gorgeous weather. view of the Bosphorus Strait

mosques EVERYWHERE. literally. and the call to prayer multiple times a day. VERY different. although the church bells here ring multiple times a day, so i guess it's somewhat comparable!

blue mosque

blue mosque

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Way better than Morocco. Whew!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Istanbul Bound!

Let's just hope the 6 hour delay we have experienced is not an indication of what's to come this weekend!

Monday, February 13, 2012


A HUGE part of traveling is the food. Food is culture. Needless to say, we've eaten a LOT of food since traveling through Europe.
And I always take pictures of our food - I know, weird. Usually on with my iPhone so it draws less attention at the restaurant! I have tons of saved food pictures that I was always thinking I'd blog about and never got around to, so here's a start! Also, I recently read in one of my travel magazines about the app 'Food Spotting.' It recognizes where you are and then uploads pictures that people have shared from what they've eaten in the area. If you see a picture that looks good, you can see the restaurant it was taken at and the meal eaten! Kinda fun! I've been adding the pictures I take (finally, a use for them!) and seeing other people's as well, just for fun!

'Wish from the Kitchen' @ Mosaiq in Wroclaw. Ginger Carrot Sesame Soup. Unexpected taste and absolutely delicious. This was brought out right after we ordered our food and wine and after one bite, we were both excited for the upcoming meal.

Scallops with a mixed mustard sauce, ginger, and pomegranate seeds @ Mosaiq in Wroclaw

Black Truffle Soup @ Mosaiq in Wroclaw served with a sweet(er) bread with mushrooms on top. Wonderful.

My Main Course in Wroclaw @ Mosaiq - Sting Ray. I was nervous about getting this, but read that the restaurant is KNOWN for their 'sauteed ray fish,' so I had to try it. It was fantastic. The texture is something I was just not expecting, Much, MUCH better than anticipated. I would get this again in a second.

Wroclaw Poland @ Mosaiq. A's Main Course: Veal Piccata.

The best dessert we have EVER had, seriously. And we both agree. In our Ryad in Fes, made by the owner, a mousse drenched in this amazingly sweet and tart raspberry sauce. WOW. Really wow. I would ONLY go back to Fes for that dessert.

Black Truffle Cream Soup. I have nevver had anything that I don't like when truffles are involved (Colmar, France)

Appetizer in France: Fresh Munster Cheese + Walnut Salad. OH MY! We were less than an hour away from Munster, France and by the taste of this cheese, you could really tell. Completely delicious. Since then, we've been addicted to goat cheese + walnuts on our salad. No, not at all like Munster, but the Munster here just isn't the same.

Main Course in France: A's Roasted Pig Leg... kind of like the turkey leg at Hokie Games, but more delicious. (Colmar). I had fish... but apparently didn't think it was picture worthy

and of course old faithful: pommes mit mayo, bier, und gluhwein! (Berlin)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Dresden, Germany

Frauenkirche - Bombed in WWII and just recently, completed again. The black stones are from the original Frauenkirche, the tan are new.


On the Elbe at Night

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Yes, it's that cold...

that the canals in Amsterdam are frozen over and people are skating on them! How crazy! Look! Our friends are going there this weekend to do the same!

our creek where the dogs usually play

completely frozen and snow covered!