Category: travel_sights

Grocery shopping in a foreign town – France

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grocery shopping in a foreign town

 

France.  It’s okay I guess.  If you happen to like gorgeous countryside, cold sparkling water, French men (that’s a whole post in and of itself, short story: they’re hot), cheese, delicious bread and shopping of any variety.  Oh, and the south of France is the WORST.  So boring and perfectly sunny with warm wave-less ocean and blue skies forever.

 

sea food vendor

 

Basically France and Spain were a wonderland.  Plural.  It’s a thing.

cote d'azur

A few months ago I went on a whirlwind 2 week trip to France and Spain with one of my very best friends, (BEST IDEA EVER) and when I came back I was so exhausted from the amazing happiness of it all, I basically took the entire summer off to dream about it by the pool.

I did manage to post about what to do on the French Riviera should you ever find yourself in Antibes, Cannes or Nice and are out of ideas (you shouldn’t be).

The short version is that France and Spain are beautiful and fun and lovely in every possible way.  The long version will be laid out in a whole bunch of future posts, starting with this one.  So let’s get … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Costa Rica I love you forever part I

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A handful of weeks ago I mentioned my family trip to Costa Rica where I enjoyed what can only be called a ‘spiritual experience’.  If you need a dose of life affirmation in your life, a little yes-you should-be-on-the-planet-and-the-world-is-good, Costa Rica is your girl.

tourism

I think of countries as genders, don’t you?  Germany is totally a dude.

costa rica I love you forever part I

Right after we showed up in San Jose (the nation’s capital) we were escorted by minibus to a tour of a coffee plantation in the rainforest.

I need a minute to process that statement.

costa rica I love you forever

A coffee plantation in the middle of the rainforest you guys.  That business doesn’t happen to me every day.  Or any day, actually.  I live in Utah, one of the most arid states in the U.S. – it took some time for my little family to absorb all the green.  The greeeeeeeen!  And the humid (oh so humid) air in Costa Rica is like chewing gum, so thick you can roll it around on your tongue for awhile before you continue swimming.  By the time we happened upon this little waterfall off the side of the road we were all pretty *moist*, which is the polite society … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

And then I went to Hawaii

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You guys, major major Life List stuff has been happening around these parts recently.  None of which feels real, because I’m not the sort of person whose life has been filled with exotic vacations up to this point.  Growing up, my family’s version of vacation was tent camping next to the Harley gang at the KOA in Reno.  Seriously, true story.

I don’t even have the vocabulary to express my gratitude to be in a time and place in my life where this kind of stuff is happening, but I’ll try to get it all out.  Not today though.  Today I’m so swollen I can barely open my eyes and have cankles/tree stumps where my feet used to be.  I can’t get shoes on my feet today, so I’m going to rest up.  I have a lot to tell you when I get back on my feet.

I went to Hawaii

Between Costa Rica and my quick jaunt last week to the North Shore of Hawaii I feel like I’m in a medicated dream, albeit a really, really great one.  Catch you on the flip side.

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Trip to Williamsburg Virginia

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 – Note from Allison: (post number 2 in a series of 2) Last week my friend Lindsey Johnson {an amazing food blogger you need to  know about} took a trip to historic Williamsburg Virginia on behalf of Petit Elefant.  Williamsburg looks like an amazing destination for a family trip and  I can’t wait to go with my kids.   Doesn’t the colonial house look so charming?  P.S. Lindsey’s photography is my favorite; all photos were shot by her. –

trip to Williamsburg Virginia

If you’re into history like I am, you have to take a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia.  If you aren’t into history?  You have to go to Colonial Williamsburg because you will end up loving it — both history and Williamsburg.

Picture a Revolutionary War era village where interpreters dressed in period costumes give you a peek into the daily life of Williamsburg colonists.  Williamsburg was the capital of the Virginia Colony in the New World.  It was the wealthiest and most populated British colony.  The living museum is the largest of its kind in the world’s, and will blow you away with restored historic buildings, beautiful gardens, and trade shops.

colonial williamsburg virginia

Every little detail has been seen to in Colonial Williamsburg.  The interpreters … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Trip to historic Williamsburg Virginia

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 – Note from Allison: last week my sweet friend Lindsey Johnson {an amazing food blogger you need to  know about} took a trip to historic Williamsburg Virginia on behalf of Petit Elefant.  Williamsburg looks like an amazing destination for a family trip, I can’t wait to go with my kids. Lindsey is a phenomenal photographer and all the photos in the post belong to her. –

 

As I’ve gotten older I’ve become less of an amusement park person, so when I say this believe me:  I loved Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia.  It’s been voted The World’s Most Beautiful Theme Park for over twenty years by the National Amusement Park Historical Association, and it’s truly gorgeous in every way.  The landscaping and gardens, the buildings, the rides, the shops.  Everything.  Also it was scrupulously clean–even the restrooms, which is something I always check for when I’m traveling.  The employees were also incredibly friendly and helpful which is always awesome.

trip to Williamsburg Virginia

What’s special about Busch Gardens VA?  Well … aside from being gorgeous, it’s a European themed parkFun, right?  You can visit the British Isles, Ireland, France, New France (Canada), Italy and Germany all … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

World War 2 memorials in Warsaw Poland

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I’ve been having a hard time corralling my thoughts about all the World War 2 memorials in Warsaw Poland from our family trip last summer, but it’s time to share.

world war II memorials warsaw poland

Honestly, a huge part of my desire to visit Warsaw while Viktor’s parents were still alive was so my children would learn about their heritage straight from Babcia and Dziadek {grandma and grandpa} in their home country.  The things Viktor’s family has experienced over the last several generations are almost unfathomable, and I needed my children to see it with their own eyes so they would appreciate what kind of life they live due to the sacrifices of their ancestors.

World War II memorials warsaw

We walked everywhere in Warsaw, and every time we left the apartment we came across a memorial like this one.  A plaque in the middle of the sidewalk briefly detailing the approximate number of people murdered by German soldiers in that spot in one day during World War 2.  The first time we saw one of these memorials my sweet Precocious almost threw up.  She’s old enough to understand exactly what it all means and that it happened to so many of her daddy’s family and friends.  At each … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Sunrise in the Czech Republic

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I leave you for the weekend with some photos of Europe.  Viktor snapped these pictures from our train car as we were headed into Prague for the day.  The children and I were completely sacked out, blissfully oblivious to the whole world {you’ve never slept until you’ve slept on a moving train – I slept like the dead} while Viktor captured the morning calm of a new country.

We have shots like this from every different country we visited in Eastern Europe, slices of the countryside outside major cities.  Farms, animals, people walking to the market with a cart full of produce to sell for the day.  There’s nothing like it, it’s just pure magic looking into people’s lives for a fraction of a second behind the glass.

before sunrise in the czech republic

sunrise in europe

sunrise in the Czech Republic

 Have a happy weekend, even if we aren’t in the Czech Republic looking at a beautiful sunrise.

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Images from Warszawa Poland

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I started composing a huge post today about our family travels to Warsaw, but I can’t quite find the words to adequately express how I feel.  Instead I’m going to break it all down one post at a time in the coming months.

Before I jump into that though, I thought I’d share some images from Warszawa Poland.  That’s how the locals say it: Warszawa, only they don’t say Poland because that’s American-ese, they say Polska.  So it’s actually *garble garble garble Warszawa Poland*.

With lots of the shouting and more shouting.

cobblestone streets

Old town.

hala mirowska

Market.

images from warsaw

Apartments.

images from warsaw locals

Who says you can’t go home again?

image from warsaw

Carnival.

presidential palace

Presidential palace.

university of Warsaw

University gardens.

image from warsaw poland

Downtown view.

crosswalk

Crosswalk.

couple in love

In love.

coca cola

Coca-Cola light.

warsaw poland

Tunnel.

church warsaw poland

Pope John Paul II.

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Magical Polish cemetery

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Europe sidewalk

The best part about our European vacation wasn’t the playgrounds, although they were full of rad.  Or the Turkish baths in Budapest, although I’d like to move into one of the changing cabins post haste.  It wasn’t even the bubbly water, or the trains, or the month without a cell phone, even though each and every one of those things were worth the trip.

magical Polish cemetery

The best part about Europe was seeing where my husband grew up, seeing his primary school and where his family lives and where his parents lived during the war.  And part of all that was seeing the cemetery where some of Viktor’s family are buried.

polish cemetery gate

Most of Viktor’s family died in and around World War II and ended up in unmarked graves or concentration camps.  I can count on one hand the number of living relatives on both sides of Viktor’s family combined.  There isn’t  much left but memories and a few photographs, so I was really excited to visit a cemetery and a family grave site.

In Europe, at least in Poland, families take care of the graves.  There’s a chapel in the cemetery and while the priest and some nuns take care … >> find out more…

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!