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Happy Halloween!

In America (and a few other countries around the world), October 31st is a day to dress up in fun costumes, put on extraordinary makeup, and gather candies from neighbors.  In Ukraine however, October 31st is an ordinary day of getting dressed and going to school and/or work.  Thanks to Western influence (and awesome Peace Corps volunteers) Ukrainians have recently started to get into the Halloween spirit!  Even though Halloween in Ukraine does not involve Trick-or-Treating around the neighborhood, children...

Літо!

Now that summer has officially ended (the first day of Fall was last month), I am very excited to share my summer adventures with everyone! My summer began with a two-day celebration! The first event honored the teachers.  We got flowers from our students, awards from our school directors, and had a special lunch.  Since there were no more classes to teach, we were able to relax and enjoy our free time together.  We talked (without students being present), ate,...

School’s Out for Summer!

As of Friday (May 26) the 2016-2017 school year at the Opishnya Specialized School has finally come to an end! The end of the year was marked with multiple celebrations ranging from presentations and 4th form graduation, to the “Last Bell”. The festivities kicked off with a presentation/awards ceremony for students and teachers.  This day is known as the “Day of School”.  This day honors those who work in the Ukrainian school system and the students they help.  Below are...

My First Christmas in Ukraine!

This year’s Christmas season began on the day I arrived in Opishnya, December 7th.  The seventh of December is an important day for Americans, myself, and Ukrainians, but for very different reasons.  It is National Pearl Harbor Remembrance day, my Swearing-In day, and Saint. Catherine’s day.  In Ukraine, St. Catherine’s day marks the start of the Christmas season.  Saint Catherine of Alexandria is a Christian Saint, who died in the early 4th century at the hands of the pagan emperor Maxentius.  St....

Happy Thanksgiving!

On December 7, 2016, I swore-in as a Peace Corps volunteer.  I will be teaching English in Ukraine for the next two years (and I can’t imagine spending the next two years any other way).  I will be spending this week: observing classes, helping with research, deciding on my future Ukrainian classes (literature and language), and giving presentations.  Even though I won’t be teaching any classes, I am excited to do what I can before the winter break!  As I...

My New Home, Ukraine

I decided that I wanted to become Peace Corps volunteer in the 10th grade.  At the time, my main goal was to become a traveling nurse.  After changing majors as an undergrad and then going to school to get my masters, the thought of serving in the Peace Corps seemed to be a fleeting dream.  If you had told me that I would be moving across the world within the next ten years, I would have said that you were...