Thursday, January 31, 2013


Hello everyone!

Sorry this is sort of a late update, but I've been sick... that's totally not an excuse because I've been watching reruns of Suits, but oh well.

I went on my retreat for all the rhétos last week from Wednesday until Friday. It was a lot of fun!!! I didn't take any pictures because I didn't bring my camera (didn't want it to get stolen) but I've got a few from friends. I wasn't looking forward to it before I left but I ended up having a great time.

Lucie, Lucas, Ben, Emilie, Emilie (again), Adéle, Odile, and Cristina

Elysa, Jodie, & Cristina

Amélie & Lauriane

Alicia & Camille

We did tons of activities, including a walk with another person. I went with my friend Jodie. We ended up getting really lost with 6 other people and it took us two hours to get back, but it was still very fun! It was really hard to walk (not for the others, but for us) because we had to walk through two fields to catch up with the rest of the other people, but we kept our spirits up.

Odile, Jodie, and I were a trio sticking together while all the guys walked super far ahead

The teachers kept us busy the entire time, so I ended up being really exhausted after all of it. Not to mention my suitcase handle was broken as well as the zipper for my sleeping bag!!! I was roughing it for sure, but I had a lot of fun and the place was beautiful. We stayed at Domaine de Mozet. They have a website if you're interested in checking it out. It was snowy (icy is more like it actually) while we were there, but it was still really beautiful. 

Also, today is January 31st so I'd like to say Happy Birthday to the most supportive woman in my life, my mother! If you know her, give her a call and wish her a great day. Or take her out for sushi or something :) 

I'm off to my Mid-Stay Orientation this weekend so I'll write about that when I come back! Time really flies.... 

À tantôt


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Quick Update, Month #5

School is pretty much all I've been doing lately! My teachers still have very high expectations (too high in my opinion. I had to write a 20-40 line poem in French and it took me 3 1/2 hours because it had to rhyme...) but I'm trying to work through it.

It's been ridiculously cold lately, and my heart aches for Californian winters. It was -10ºC when I got into the car the other day (14ºF) which is just ridiculous. But it's been snowing!!!! This is the first time I've ever had to go school in the snow, and it has been both good and bad. Good because walking on snow is more satisfying than walking on crunchy leaves, bad because I slipped walking up the stairs, and now I have a fat bruise on my knee.

snow day selfies 

Tomorrow I'm going on my retreat with my grade from Wednesday-Friday. I hope it's going to be fun! I already know it's going to be cold so I've been staring at all my clothes deciding what I should pack. I'll update you about the retreat when I come back.

My host sister and I might try to make sushi, and my host mom and I want to have a dinner party for Chinese New Year, so I've been emailing my mom back and forth to get some recipes from her! Apart from that, I have my Mid Stay Orientation on the 2nd and 3rd, as well as my mini camp for Scouts that same weekend. I hope I can try to go to both, but I doubt it. After that, I have a little bit of school and then another vacation!

I miss California and everything/everyone in it so much! But my French is improving so much, and no matter how much I miss everyone, Belgium has always been my dream and I love it here so much. My time is almost halfway gone here, and I don't know how I'm going to leave this life behind!

Bonne semaine et à bientôt!


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Bruges v3 and Back to School Blues

Hi everyone!

A couple days before winter break ended I went to Bruges with a few other exchange students. It was a lot of fun but typical Belgian weather. The best part was seeing swans super up close! Way closer than before. I forgot my camera but I had my iPhone with me so I'll share some pictures from there.

Panorama of an old church

I'm officially back in school. I have the same schedule as before, only now it's much harder because the teachers suddenly expect me to do just about everything the other students do, as if I would have suddenly become fluent over break. It's incredibly frustrating, especially because I'm trying my hardest. In my opinion, I'm trying harder than all the other students, because it's in their natural language. I feel as if I never get allowed a break. Oh well, I'll stop complaining now.

Friday I'm having a few people over at my house, and in a few weeks I'm going to a "retreat" with my grade. For now though, it's just school and scouts (exciting, right??). I hope you guys had a great return to school/work!

À plus tard!


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Bonne année et bonne santé!

Happy New Year everyone!
Not many things have happened since I last updated, which is good because I have to go to sleep really soon.

Mary Kate, an American who was hosted by my family in 1999-2000 came over to visit for a day with her husband. It was great! She brought over dishtowels with the days of the week on them. It's kind of a running joke to bring up the dishes because there's no dishwasher in the house, and the days of the week are in English to help my host mom improve her English (another joke, my host mom swears she's terrible with languages)! They were very nice and it was great to see that she could still speak French very well after so many years.

For New Year's Eve, I went to Brussels with Julia from Australia and Caleb, who lives in Brussels with his host family. We first went shopping (SUCH a disaster, all the stores closed super early and I couldn't find any shoes. I had snow boots with me.... finally we found a store that agreed to stay open for five minutes so I could buy flats) and then back to Caleb's for dinner. Then we got ready and went out. Almost EVERY bar was carding that night, and while that isn't a problem for me because I'm 18 now, it was a problem for my friends because they aren't. I wasn't just going to leave my friends so we searched and finally found some places that weren't carding. For the countdown to midnight, we were in a pretty nice bar drinking my favorite beer, I can't complain about that! It rained all day and night, but the next morning, it was beautiful and sunny, a great way to start the year.

(This isn't my favorite, my favorite is Lindemans Framboise, but close enough!) 

Tonight I went to visit another AFS host family, because they also had one of their students come back to visit, and she's from Boston. We had Chinese food for dinner (first time having it in four months..... let's just say it did not satisfy my craving, I miss my mom's cooking!) and stayed until 11 talking about Belgium vs the US, other exchange students, and more. I'm going to Bruges tomorrow with her and Skyler, so that should be fun! I'll end this now because I have to wake up early, but I'll tell you about Bruges later! It's my favorite city in Belgium so far.

À tantôt