Welcome to my blog!

I was thinking about starting a blog for quite a while but could not decide what to write about. My husband and I travel quite often because of his job. We always loved it even before we met. We actually met because my husband decided to take a job overseas and came to a place where I was, about 7 thousand miles away from him. His decision changed our lives for the very best!

I also like to cook but I don't think that I need a blog to document every meal I make. Only occasionally, maybe. We also decided to eat healthier so the blog will help me to keep track of our meals and weight.
That's how I eventually signed up for a blog and named it Veronika's Travel and Living.

Hopefully, I'll like blogging. We'll see.. ;)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

It's a boy!!!!!!

I have a great and short update on my living. Yesterday we found out the gender. We are having a boy!!!!! It's so exciting! It was the first time Chris went with me for the ultrasound. The doctor asked us if we wanted to know the gender and we said yes. She showed us the baby's heart and started taking measurements and then said: It's a boy! Chris and I were very excited and happy. I kept having dreams about little boys from the very beginning of my pregnancy, even when I did not know that I was pregnant. And my brother and MIL had a dream that we had a boy on the same day before they even knew that I'm pregnant. It may sound crazy and insane but it's an amazing connection between a woman and her child.

So the baby measures exactly 16 weeks and everything looked good. Chris and I were very happy to know that we are having a son. Now I can think of the baby as a boy, our son, my son. I'm so touched typing it. Yesterday on the way back from my appointment I was thinking that I would be a proud Mom of a boy. I will have a son. It made me think of a picture Chris has with his Mom at his graduation from college. It must be an amazing feeling to be a mother of such a great son! Hopefully, our son will look like Chris and be like him: smart, athletic, tall, strong and just a nice guy. We have no idea about the name yet. I started a list of possible names. We have plenty of time to choose the right one. There will be lots of researches involved but it's all fun stuff. So far I have no idea what we'll need to buy for the baby. I'm not going to buy anything before October. By the way, another interesting thing is that we did not break the family tradition having a boy in November or around November. Both Chris and his father are born in November! My EDD is one day before Chris' birthday :)

So far I'm doing well on gaining weight. I've gained only 3 pounds from the beginning of pregnancy. Not bad, I think! I'm still wearing my clothes and I have quite a few dresses and shirts that are perfect for my growing belly. I'm posting pictures of me at 12 weeks and at 16 weeks.

12 weeks

16 weeks
Yep, I have a little bump!!! Grow baby, grow!!!!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Victory Day - Den' Pobedy! May 9th, 2010

May 9th is one of the greatest holidays in Russia. It's anniversary of the victory in WWII. Not many people outside of Russia know about this holiday and what difficult and horrible time it was for all Russian (Soviet back then) people, and not only for Russians of course.

Soviet Union lost 25 million people in World War II. There is no family in Russia whose relatives did not fight or died in the war. Hopefully there will be no wars any more. I cannot imagine what my grandparents and other old people had to go through living at that time, not to mention fighting in the war. Both my grandfathers fought in the war. I did not know my Dad's father as he died before I was born but I knew my other grandfather Stepan who fought in the war. He got all the way to Berlin in his tank and was wounded. He has many medals and awards. He did not talk about the war and we did not ask as we were kids and everything seemed different at the time. Unfortunately, granddad died about 13 years ago. Since then it's a tradition in our family to go to a cemetery to his grave on the Victory Day and bring him flowers.

This year it was the 65th anniversary of the Victory Day. It was celebrated throughout the country. Actually, we celebrate every year.
This year it was special. Moscow had the main parade at the Red Square.

One needed an invitation/pass to get there. Mostly WWII veterans and representatives of foreign governments were present there. 40 thousand soldiers participated in the parade.

For the first time in the history they invited soldiers of the Allies to take part in the parade. It was great! Following the march of the soldiers were tanks and heavy military trucks. Then 127 planes and helicopters flew over the center of Moscow. It was amazing!

We live in the very center of Moscow and for the second year go to the main street to watch planes and military trucks, as the latter always go back to their units from the parade through the main street. It was great! The street was full of people, everyone was happy. There were many veterans in the streets. People congratulated them and thanked for their bravery.

I like to watch tanks and military trucks driving along the main street and wave to soldiers on May 9th. I always smile and wave to every single one of them. Some do not look at the crowd, some do and even wave back, some drivers honked in response. It was fun and did not look real: tanks in the center of Moscow! There were many foreign tourists watching it too: Americans, Brits, Germans, Italians etc.

After watching the tanks we went for a short walk to a park. They played music there and kids sang for veterans. It was very touching.
Chris bought me beautiful flowers for the Victory Day. Lilies smell amazing!

The last picture was taken last year on the same day.