My Top 5 Places To Eat in DC Metro Area

Everybody who knows me at least a little bit,  knows I am a foodie. I love to cook and I love to eat. I love exploring new places to eat, I love good food presentation, I love going to the cooking classes, and food is a significant part of my travelling  experience. This love has taken its toll on me though and I had to make going to the gym a part of my routine to keep  the digits on the scale somehow under control. But it’s not the point.

In this post I want to share with you my favorite food places this spring. Most of them are my latest discoveries, but some of them I have been loving for ages.

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Photo by Ambar Restaurant

Ambar :  –  If you have never tried Balkan cuisine – you need to go. If you have – you don’t need this blog post to tell you this as you have probably already made a reservation. The best way to enjoy is to come very hungry and order Balkan Experience – you pay fixed price and they bring you everything on the menu. The dishes are tapas size, so you will be able to fit quite a few in your stomach. The service is great, everyone is very friendly, the food tastes as if your Grandmother just cooked it, drink selection is beyond this world and I particularly love the choice of music. Love, love, love! Continue reading

Age Is Just a Number Or I am 32 Today

 

  So… 32.:) Since the first digit of my age flipped to 3 from 2, I stopped caring about the number that defines how long it’s been since I was born, because guess what? it really does not matter. How many times I heard this in my teens or early twenties – gazillion, but I never believed it, but turned out my mamma was right. So if you are under 25 and for some reason are reading this – age does not matter. If you are over 30, you’ll probably agree.
If I were asked by my younger self what’s the best part of being the age I am – I’d say “not giving much shit”. Turning your focus of attention from outwards to inwards. Knowing what you want and how to get there – more or less. Understanding that all the relationships you have – with the partner, parents, friends, colleagues, work, self – is your own choice.  Being able to say yes to things without thinking how it looks to others. Being able to say no to things without thinking how it looks to others. Not being too afraid to fail because you already know nothing is constant and you are kinda fine with it.

I am mainly writing it to re-read my own preaching next time I am pissed, upset, frustrated, uncertain and giving too much shit.

Not wanting it to sound like an Oscar speech I will still say there are so many things and experiences I am thankful for to the previous year of my life. Not only nice and fancy things, but also those that made me cry, reconsider, live through, overcome, accept and let go.

32 feels great. Let’s all turn 32 – unless you know for sure it only gets better from here:)

What To Do In Hawaii

I have never had ambitions to become a travel blogger. First and foremost, I am too lazy for that. Second, there is already so much information on pretty much every place on Earth out there, that I almost see no point in increasing the redundancy. But I decided to put this post together mainly for my own memories – and if anyone takes anything useful from it, I will be happy and a bit flattered.

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For many years I was that type of traveler who would spend all the time on the beach during the beach vacation. I did not care much for sightseeing and all those guided tours were nothing but a distraction for me from the main thing – beach. However as I’m becoming older, expanding my horizons, my attitude has changed quite much and now I cannot imagine wasting 7-10 days just hanging by the water with a drink and a book. Oh maybe it’s the lack of concentration and the need for changing the scenery every so often. Who knows.

Another thing is that it took me some time to find a balance between the spontaneous vacation and the one planned to a last minute. I’ve come back  from vacations disappointed that I didn’t see much and I’ve come back exhausted from non-stop marathon between the museums and palaces with a short stop on a market square.

Our Hawaiian vacation was perfect due to many reasons, one of them being us having found the perfect equilibrium between planning and spontaneity. We decided on few things we definitely wanted to do/see and the rest we took as it came. Below is the list of our activities –  our own must-see-must-do list for Hawaii. You are welcome.:)

North Shore and town of Haleiwa. Just about an hour drive from Waikiki beach there is a wonderful small town Haleiwa, which is known for the world class surfing conditions. The town is small and cosy and a bit unkept, but it’s the beauty of it. The landscapes are gorgeous too. We stopped at several beaches to take pictures and to look at courageous and fearless surfers. Right by Haleiwa there is a Dole pineapple plantation with pineapple maze – by the way, pineapples in Hawaii are to die for. Continue reading

Spirit of Aloha

My birthday trip this year is Hawaii – even though it’s happening couple weeks too early, but it really does not mater – I am enjoying every single second of it. And it’s not even the amazing turquoise Pacific Ocean or stunning landscapes – though them too – it’s the general feeling of being relaxed and not wanting to rush anywhere but savor every minute no matter what you do. The time difference definitely contributes  – we are 12 hours behind Ukraine and Finland, and 5 hours behind Virginia – we feel so detached, so isolated and so free.  For some reason Hawaii makes you want to slow down – but it’s good slow, not the “lazy butt” slow, but “I want to be here and now “slow.Hey, my husband doesn’t even speed up when the traffic lights turn yellow to still make it – this is how relaxed it is here:).

Surprisingly despite such a laid back attitude we are having here, we’ve already done so much in less than 5 days we are here. We went around half of the island to see its less sassy side, we snorkeled around the wonderful reef, we attended traditional Hawaiian dinner party – luau, went to another island, saw a live volcano,  drove miles through lava desert, climbed through the jungles of orchids and watched the sun going into the ocean. Continue reading