Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Peșteră [Cave]

While in Romania, our friends took us on many, many adventures. Probably the craziest adventure was exploring the "bowels of Romania" (as Kameron puts it). We spent a day caving in the Jui Valley, not far from the Silva's home base. 
In the Black Hills, where we live in the US, there are many caves. However, the images that pop up when someone says "I went caving" is very much different than what we did in Romania. There was no electricity. There were no stairs. There was no tour guide. This was not a tourist trap. This was four friends saying "Hey, there is a cave not far, should we explore it?" And we did. 
And I cried. I cried at least three times. 
Many times I had to stop myself from thinking terrifying thoughts. "What if our headlamps stop working?" "What if the earth shifts?" "What if I fall & hurt something?" "What if my body doesn't fit through this space?" "What if I cannot get out of this cave?"

But I went as far, and accomplished as much as the others did & that's something I can be proud of. Either I am really stubborn or God gave me strength -- or probably a good mix of the two. 
This is an experience that we will surely never forgot. I mean, who can say that they went caving in Romania?
Of course we brought our new GoPro to document the experience. Using using the chest & helmet mounts, we got some incredible footage.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Adventure Blogging

With the business of "real life," this little corner of the internet seems to have taken on a new look.

The two of us have been so immersed in our full-time jobs, maintaining our apartment we so lovingly call "Chateau de Toews," and catching Z's when (&where) we can. & now blogging for the sake of blogging has become unimportant and a waste of time. Blogging about crafts, recipes, other topics that are shared for the sole purpose of gaining a following has grown tiresome and useless at this point in our lives. (Yes, I'll admit it -- I have done far more of this useless blogging than the hubs). While there was some value in it,(i.e. documenting goals such as 50 Recipes), we want to continue this blog in ways that inspire us, not strangers. We want to gain readers that are interested in our stories. We want to keep readers we value (Hi Mom!), instead of bore them with filler posts.
Recently I have found myself using the "mark as read" button on Bloglovin' more than I actually read posts anymore. The posts that I do read are ones that share more about the personal life of the blogger, more about their adventures, and I ignore the posts about "DIY this&that" or "How to Bake *insertdeliciousorobscurefooditem*.

& I totally think I (we) need to be publishing content that I would want to read.  
Now that is not to say there will not be posts about crafts & food - because, hey, we love crafts and food. But it is to say there will be more posts about adventures, life updates, anecdotes that inspire us, & other musings. We want this space, our space, to be consistent with who we are. We want to remain faithful to our brand (--even if doing that mean developing & redeveloping it with each new adventure).

Read more about that little word "adventure."
Pictures are beautiful out-takes of our Romanian adventure.
Proof that we value documenting: there are 104GB of videos&pictures of our 2 weeks in Romania.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Finding Contentment in Romania

 Entry from Erin's Romania Adventure Journal [Monday, March 24, 2014]
As I write & reflect, I sit in Sibiu at the big piaţă (square), on a bench by two different fountains. The sun is shining, the breeze is blowing. I am alone. & I am happy. The others ventured into a church nearby. But I chose this spot. I love the independence I have to go my own way --- in Eastern Europe! What a crazy & joyful feeling. I feel as if I could cry. 
& just now a cute, old, Romanian man with a cute black hat just sat next to me on my bench. Could life get better than this? I'm sure it could, but I am quite content!
& although I am about a week behind in journaling & reflecting on my adventures... I'll take this any day. 
When I wrote that journal entry, I remember feeling complete joy & contentment with being where I was. I know - it is very odd. I was not doing anything "adventurous" or "exciting" like caving or hiking mountain. But for me. At that exact moment. It was exciting. It was an adventure. Even today, thinking about my special spot on that bench in Sibui, Romania, my heart is happy. 
I snapped some pictures on my phone to help me remember that moment. This one is the view from my bench. Isn't' it beautiful. Perfection.

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