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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Bid list and Easter

It’s been a week since I last wrote here and with the bid list and Easter there’s been a lot of excitement in our family.

We got the bid list last Wednesday and have been obsessing about it ever since. There were a couple of surprises. Not only was Bulgaria not on the list but neither were any of the neighboring countries :-( ! The closest countries are Bosnia, Kosovo, Moldova and Russia and we’ll bid high on them all. There was a silver lining though and that was the presence of some developed countries on the list, which we didn’t anticipate – France, Belgium, Austria, Norway and New Zealand. I know these would suck badly but we’ll sacrifice and bid high on them anyway. In addition, there are a bunch of other cool countries like Thailand, China, Malaysia, Egypt, Brazil, Bahrain, Oman, etc. that we are bidding high on as well. Our low bids will go to places that don’t have schools or have serious security issues. Our bid lists are due on 4/13 and we find out where we are going on 4/23.

On Thursday, I attended the spouse training at the Foreign Service Institute in Arlington. It was really neat to see the place where Paul and his classmates are polishing their Foreign Service  Badassery. It felt very much like a college campus. The people that are in their first 5 weeks of training (aka A-100) are really easy to spot because they look like penguins in their formal attire. The remainder of the training, language and functional, is a lot more casual.

The spouse training was very informative. We had a variety of presenters that gave us advice and information on what’s ahead. There were sessions on employment options for spouses, education for children, medical concerns as well as bidding strategies. Getting to know the other spouses and hearing their stories was another nice aspect of the training.

Friday, Nia and I made kozunaci (Easter Breads) – messy but a lot of fun. They turned out pretty good considering how vague the recipe was about when several key ingredients were to be added.

Saturday and Sunday were spent coloring eggs, hiding eggs, looking for eggs, eating too much and hanging out with family and friends from Bulgaria that we hadn’t seen in a long time.

Making Kozunaci and an Easter egg hunt at our apartment complex.

  Kozunak 3-3-2010 004 Kozunak 3-3-2010 005  Easter 005 Easter 008

Coloring eggs with our friend Boryana and her boys Dante and Victor; at a playground with our University of Maryland Bulgarian friends Nevena, Hristo and Zhana and H&Z’s son Alex; egg hunt at the home of Paul’s oldest brother Ray; and my two eager students getting ready to head out to school.

Easter 012Easter 014Easter 018 Easter 027

4 comments:

  1. Best of luck with the bid list, looks like a great one!

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  2. Thanks Natalie! I have been reading your blog and I love it!

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  3. Thanks for visiting my blog. And for your thoughtful comments. Congrats on getting "the call." How exciting. I love this phrase you used: Foreign Service Badassery. Made me laugh.
    Best wishes with the bid list.
    -Emily

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  4. Good luck with the bid list, and welcome to the FS!

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