Sweet, Sweet Summer

A lot of people probably think that living abroad is pretty awesome and I won’t lie, in a lot of ways it is.  But there are times when I really miss “home.”  For some reason I can make it through the winter holidays ok without feeling too terribly homesick, but when the days stretch out and the smell of fresh cut grass is in the air, it really makes me long for the good ol’ USA.

Summer means barbecues with friends, lounging at the neighborhood pool, hitting the beach, spending time with family, long sun-soaked days, balmy nights on the patio, enjoying the cool crisp a/c, corn on the cob, watermelon, farmer’s markets, fireworks, Fourth of July, and country music!  Those are the memories that flood my mind when I think summer, and I’m really missing home as it’s now officially summer.

BUT, in the meantime I am making the most of it here in Prague since summer is definitely this city’s best season.

Here are some of the things I’m loving right now about summer here in the City of A Thousand Spires…

1.  Strawberries!!!

Holy yum, these things are delicious.  The strawberry season is a bit later here (compared to North Carolina anyway) but these are definitely worth the wait!  We have been buying them by the basket and they are so sweet.  These plus the cherries and wild blueberries have been pretty constant staples in our fridge and we are all big fans, especially Jonah.

2.  Outdoor Dining

It’s kind of a novelty to be able to actually dine al fresco in the summer after living in North Carolina, where it’s so hot and humid even in the evenings that it’s more comfortable just to stay in the a/c.  We are loving eating outside in the “zahrada” and enjoying the atmosphere.  Especially of this great Greek place-they even have a private playground in their garden.  How cool is that?  Jonah plays, we eat and drink delicious Greek wine.  Score.

3.  Hiking

Last summer we had heard rumors about the picturesque Czech country side, but we were too busy not sleeping and trying to manage a fussy newborn to further explore this rumor.  Happily, we have finally gone on our first hike here in the CZ and confirm that it is quite glorious.  We went to the beautiful Cesky Raj which boasts a stroller friendly hike to check out some very cool rock formations and a pretty cool castle (which no Czech town seems to be complete without).  Hopefully this will be the first of many more hikes this summer.  We are even toying with the idea of camping.  With a toddler.  A friend has done it and tells me it is possible.  We’ll see if Jonah agrees.

4.  Playgrounds

I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned before, but I will say it again about the playgrounds here…they are awesome!  There are tons and they have really cool stuff.  Not like the stripped down-to avoid law suit-American ones.  They are for real about their playgrounds here.  Here everyone has a “local” playground.  Ours is just steps from our front door and we frequent it a lot, but we also like to try out new ones.  It’s great for Jonah and a nice way to meet up with other moms and kids.

5.  Making New Summer Memories

Summer with a toddler is obviously a relatively new thing for us and I am fully enjoying making all these new memories.  Jonah has had lots of “firsts” this summer including his first baby pool, first art group, first ice cream cone all to himself, and already many more.  I’m really enjoying him this summer and all the things we get to do together.  I know that this is such a special time in our lives right now and I’m trying to spend this summer like Jonah, truly living in the moment.

6.  A Little Slice of Home

And last but not least…we recently discovered this restaurant owned by an American couple.  They serve up REAL American food.  The best veggie burger I have had in ages, fries, cole slaw, and for dessert we all shared a piece of strawberry rhubarb pie.  Yes, living in the moment and enjoying summer in Prague…but doesn’t hurt to have some reminders from home too!

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