Poland 2011

Look at how much T1 has grown in 6 months time! We were in Poland in September of 2011 and I’m writing this post in May of 2012. Prompt recaps just really aren’t my thing, you know? This is a little taste of the happiness we found in That Husband’s hometown.

My in-laws have a gorgeous backyard filled with trees and bushes that were bursting with fruit when we were there. Pears, berries, apples. We missed the mini kiwis by only a few days!

T1’s grandparents on both sides spoil him shamelessly. On this visit to Poland he found a special chair in the kitchen where he could sit and drink his milk while watching Teletubbies (in Polish of course).

A favorite from the trip!

My father-in-law celebrated a birthday while we were there, and to celebrate we went to eat in a castle. A castle! Europe is so cool.

One of the old menus on the left, and my extravagantly arranged dinner plate on the right.

TH’s parents live within walking distance of the cemetery and we always take some time to visit.

I know it’s strange to take a picture of a garbage can, but I think it symbolizes the respect this little town has for their relatives who have passed on. Visits are made frequently and all of the graves are taken care of really well. Most of the flowers that you see as you walk through the rows are fresh (often purchased from the booths set up for that very purpose right outside the graveyard entrance).

TH’s childhood home.

Krakow cake! I’m sharing the recipe for this here on the blog tomorrow.

One evening That Husband and I went out for a photo walk, one of my favorite pastimes. I wanted to try to capture what his neighborhood is like. We left kind of late and it was getting dark, and I’d like to do it again next time and explore a little bit more.

Across the street from his house are some garden plots. Residents of the nearby area who live in apartment buildings rent them out so they can have a space to commune with nature. Some of them are really nice and even have little one-room houses.

The highlight of this Poland visit for me was the morning we woke up early and went mushroom hunting with my SIL and her husband. TH speaks so fondly of his time spent mushroom hunting as a child and I also think it’s pretty magical. You wake up early and drive out to the forest as the sun rises. Once you’re inside the canopy of trees it’s quiet, green and the light is to die for. I hope we’re able to go back again this year.

Everyone carries a plastic bag with them to fill with mushrooms. Unfortunately we all went home with bags that were still empty. Even though we were there just after sunrise I was told that someone had already been there before us collecting all the good mushrooms!

I spotted several different varieties, but they were all deemed poisonous by my guides.

TH did find one, which had already been ravaged by snail. We took it home as a token prize for our efforts.

Even though we didn’t find anything I still loved it and look forward to going back again!

On our way back to my SIL’s apartment we stopped at a small market to pick up some bread. I was fascinated by this little gathering of vendors because it’s not really something you see in the United States anymore. TH told me is a hold-over from Communism, when people couldn’t drive to a large market to buy the things they needed and did their shopping at neighborhood markets.

So that’s where all the mushrooms went!

See those tracks on the right? Why don’t we have those in the United States yet! Get with the program architects.

My SIL loves color and cats. I adore her.

That sausage in the lower-right hand corner of the frame is my favorite sausage in the world and my mouth is watering just thinking about it. It’s my BIL’s favorite too.

My BIL is a true renaissance man. He works with robots for his day job and then heads out into the wild on horseback on the weekends and for holidays. This last trip he was wearing a big cast after severing his hand while chopping wood.

The last thing we did on our trip was a round of family pictures with TH’s family. Getting myself ready and also being the one to photograph the session was kind of stressful, but they’re beautiful and I’m so happy everyone was willing to gather at my request. Thanks to TH’s cousin for stepping up and taking all of the pictures that I’m in!

Hard to believe, but we only have about 100 days and we’ll be back in Poland for our 2012 trip. We love you K, J, Z, K, and the rest of the family. See you soon!

22 thoughts on “Poland 2011

  1. Mushroom hunting looks like so much fun! I could never do it myself (my sister had a classmate whose family ate the wrong species and all had to get liver transplants), but with experienced guides it would be fantastic.

    Also, love the photos of T1 eating the pears: my daughter looks like that whenever we give her fruit, and it’s so cute.

  2. What are those tracks over the stairs at that one house? Are those for wheel chairs? Carts?

    Jenna Reply:

    Yeah for strollers or wheelchairs or shopping carts. Wouldn’t it be great to see those throughout the US?

    Naomi C. Reply:

    It would be great to see them. Unfortunately, anything relating to wheelchairs falls under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) which has pretty strict rules on ramps and such. I work in construction and it’s crazy the laws and regulations the architects have to design under. Something like those tracks would never fly. Plus, with how litigious our society is, I just see it as a lawsuit waiting to happen. It’s really unfortunate because they would be so helpful with strollers and even for us city dwellers, my grocery cart that I use.

  3. Does your husband speak in Polish to T1? I always wish I had been raised in a bilingual household.

    Jenna Reply:

    Sometimes. We need to do better.

  4. Love this post!! I’ve never been mushroom hunting but I would love to try. The market you took photos of looks exactly like all of the markets I have near our home here in Spain.

    All of the family photos are gorgeous. It really is amazing how much T1 has grown in 6 months! It’s so fun to look in and see how TH grew up and his neighborhood, it looks like a very beautiful place. I’ll be so excited to hear about your next trip to Poland…oh, about a year from now 😉 hahaha jk.

  5. My parents have a yard just like TH’s parents and I agree that it’s the best. I love it when you post about things related to Poland since I’m also about to marry someone who has a different nationality than me. Would you ever be willing to write a post on the cultural differences and similarities between you and TH? I’d love to read that.

    Jenna Reply:

    I’m not sure if I know of any? He’s very Americanized. 🙂

  6. I’m so, so jealous! Why did the guy I fell in love with have to be from Montana????

    I love European cemetaries. There was one called Olsanske Hrbitovy in Prague near where we stayed when I studied abroad. I have some pics of it here: https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos?q=olsanske%20hrbitovy&hl=en&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7ADFA_enUS424&prmd=imvns&biw=1280&bih=822&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&tab=iq#photos/108945760818669034796/albums/5080417584758908513. It’s huge and so cool to walk around. I would go there when I just needed some quiet time, and there would always be families going for walks there.

    I love the walking-around-in-forests bit. It reminds me of Midsomer Murders, this amazing British murder-mystery series on Netflix. It’s a little ’90s, but I like them because they’re impossible to guess ahead of time and not focused on guts and gore. But not too campy either.

    Jenna Reply:

    I’ve been getting into British dramas lately. I’m excited to try that one out!

    Gwendolyn Reply:

    Oh I LOVE Midsomer Murders! So recomend it! Actually I’m a bit in love with all shows British…

  7. Love this post! I want to visit Poland again!

    I’m assuming you mean your BIL didn’t actually sever his hand, right??

    Jenna Reply:

    I meant “sliced”. Haha, sometimes I write these things so fast I don’t make any sense.

  8. This post is so fun for me to read because I am Polish as well. I came over to the US with my parents and sister when I was a kid. The rest of my family is still in Poland, and we go back to visit every few years or so.

    It’s really interesting for me because you touch on so many things that make Poland so wonderful to me personally – the food (kabanoski sausage are my favorite; I think that might be what is featured in your photo, or something similar), the immaculate cemeteries (we ALWAYS go visit the cemetery when we visit, and before my grandma had a stroke, she went my grandpa’s grave with fresh flowers almost every week), the mushroom hunting (I have fond memories of this as a child. It’s an old Polish joke that you have to get out there early. Not because it’s easier to hunt mushrooms early in the morning but because other will beat you to it if you don’t. )

    Thanks for sharing such great photos and stories!

  9. I stumbled on this post via the Krakow Cake via Pinterest. Reading it made me yearn to visit Poland again, thank you! I live in Canada but was born there and though I immigrated at a very young aga, I see feel my strong Polish roots.
    I do miss mushroom picking, and we do it in Canada, so i’m sure you could do it in the states.

    thanks for your post! thanks for making my heart smile!

  10. Is TH Mormon also?

    Jenna Reply:


    Kelley Reply:

    I just started reading your blog. You make wonderful pictures. I like your blog because you don’t make your life seem all roses and no thorns like some of the bloggers I have read.

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