Reunited and it feels so good

Going to the University of Kansas requires two things: A love for basketball and an ability to put up with constant references to “The Wizard of Oz.”

For as much as I roll my eyes anytime I hear, “I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore, Toto,” I have to admit that Dorothy was right about something…

There truly is no place like home.

Disclaimer: Sorry in advance for the little schmooze-fest. I just can’t contain my excitement about being home.

My two months in Germany were amazing. Inspiring. Educational. Life-changing. Adjective-evoking…

As much fun as it was, the reunions upon my return home have been equally exciting.

Reunited with real oatmeal. I tracked down some quick-cooking oats in my family’s pantry about a month into my stay. Still, it just wasn’t the same as my beloved old-fashioned oats.

The first morning I was back, I loaded up a bowl with low and slow cooked oats, “Fruit Not Fat” granola, strawberries, a bit of low-fat cream cheese and Nutella (my sister apparently got addicted in Italy, so our pantry was already stocked).

Reunited with the local farmer’s market. Germany has wonderful fresh-air markets, with fresh fruit, vegetables, bread and other essentials.

But, if I had birthday cake every day, it wouldn’t be so special on November 14 (hint, hint). On that same note, the farmer’s markets in Germany lost some appeal after a while.

Back home, with markets only once a week, it is much more of an event. I love scanning the selections, deciding what I need and soaking in a leisurely morning.

Reunited with my boy. You know the scene in fill-in-the-blank chick flick, where two characters are joyfully reunited?

I used to think that was a little ridiculous. I mean, who really runs into someone’s arms?

About that… Upon seeing my boy at the airport, I had to restrain myself from breaking into a full sprint to reach him.

Impromptu farmer's market picnic.

Reunited with my sister. One of the highlights of my trip was the afternoon I spent with my sister as she was on her way to Italy.

Six weeks later, though, there was a lot of lost time to make up for…

It seems like every time I see her, she is more beautiful, more amazing and more inspirational.

Out to lunch.

Reunited with normal food. I really, truly enjoyed my culinary experiences in Germany. Still, I was excited to get back to my tried-and-true favorites.

Sometimes simplicity really speaks. Such is the case with this black bean wrap and delicious green beans. I’ll take that over schnitzel, thank you very much.

Reunited with heat. The first six weeks in Germany, I enjoyed moderate temperatures and sunshine. However, the sun was a total stranger the last two weeks of my trip.

I should be careful what I wish for… With 100-plus degree temperatures, I forgot just how hot it could be.

Oh well, just another excuse to get ice cream.

Reunited with hummus. There is no hummus in Germany. At all. Even at the Greek restaurants.

It was a travesty… Believe me when I say I’m making up for it now.

Tabouli, hummus, pita and fresh melon at "Bread and Cup."

Reunited with my Momma. My host-family was great, but they just can’t compare to my actual family.

I’m blessed with supportive, loving and inspirational parents.

My mom understands me in a way that no one else can. If I can be half the person she is, then I’m doing pretty well.

Reunited with my cat. The single most difficult part about studying abroad was being unable to get home when my family put my dog to sleep.

Although it was tough to walk in the door and not be greeted by my dog, I was still excited to see my cat.

Also reunited with my dad, my friends and the state of Kansas.
These past few days have been a total whirlwind with seeing people, moving down to Kansas, starting a new job on the newspaper and getting resettled.

Unfortunately, I am yet to be reunited with the Internet in my apartment. Boo.

Question: What is your favorite part about returning home from vacation, school or a trip to the grocery store (which in my case can really last a while…)?


6 responses to “Reunited and it feels so good

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