Friday Gratitude: The Upside Down

I bought this little souvenir for myself on my first visit to Skopje, Macedonia, a few weeks ago. It makes me happy.

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Media Consumption:

  • I tore through Stranger Things on Netflix and loved it.
  • A volunteer friend told me about The Psychopath Test, which she let me borrow when she finished. It offered many points to consider when trying to define what “madness” really is.
  • For this week’s Shqip lesson, I watched Bridget Jones’s Baby. It was more delightful than I expected. I really love those characters (particularly Mark Darcy).

I attended a meeting at the Peace Corps office on Monday, on how to evaluate English language learning in the classroom. It was pretty interesting. Afterward, I went with some friends to eat Mexican food. Mmm, refried beans, tortilla chips, and nacho cheese! (Here’s me with my friend, Chelsea, who wrote this guest blog a while back.)

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Happy for nachos!

I cracked up at this photo my friend Ingrid (who wrote this guest blog post) uploaded to Facebook:

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Photo by Ingrid, posted with her permission

I can just imagine some doofus at the post office being like, “Duh, where’s Kosovo? Maybe in Russia?”

Speaking of the post, this awesomeness arrived:

IT FEELS LIKE CHRISTMAS OVER HERE!!! I got not one, not two, but THREE care packages this week! Thank you to the best parents (MY parents), my awesome friend Katie, and my sweet Aunt Tina and her husband, Larry. Here is a list of what I got (yes, I am going to subject you to a list): 3 Christmas ornaments, Santa Pez, a Merry Christmas window cling, Nutella, Chicago Frango Mints, jelly beans, Doritos, Cheez-its, 2 boxes of Annie's Mac and Cheese, Trader Joe's salsa (my favorite!), a bag of Tostitos, 2 packages of hard candies, 2 bags of cotton balls, face moisturizer, 2 hand lotions, hand sanitizer, 2 sticks of deodorant, conditioner, eyebrow gel, 4 yoga magazines, one crochet magazine, crochet hooks, a tiny toy crochet kit, a weekly planner, a journal, index cards, a necklace, paint samples for a project for my classes, aaaannnddd … my UGG boots (second attempt at sending them was successful!) THANK YOU!!! And thanks to my site mate, who offered to haul all this stuff from the Peace Corps office to me. #thankyou #gratitude #carepackage #peacecorps ❤️🇺🇸📦✈️🇽🇰

A post shared by April Gardner (@hellofromkosovo) on

I had been feeling nostalgic for the holiday spirit. (If I were at home, I would have already started Christmas shopping by now, at least a little bit. I’d have created a list of friends and family to buy for, and started writing down gift ideas. And soon, I’d be headed to the dollar store to buy wrapping paper, bows, and bags. I miss baking cookies, too. I haven’t done that in forever.)

But my care packages really brightened my mood! 🙂 !!!

I’ll see you all back here on Monday.

One thought on “Friday Gratitude: The Upside Down”

  1. I make a list of who to buy for and what I am buying them too!!

    I can’t wait to sent you a care package. I am just waiting to make sure Lisa’s cheese makes it to you before I send cheese too. I bought you something months ago and have been waiting to give it to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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