This weekend felt like I was running and doing nothing at the same time. After a whirlwind trip to Chicago meeting all of the wonderful teachers I’ll be spending my summer with, learning to create excellent lessons, and getting to know the school and neighborhood I’ll be working in, I needed some good rest. Saturday I did just that. Gave myself a pedicure, deep conditioned my hair, cooked a big dinner. Sunday was for catching up and a day date with D. This week is already off to a running start with a full moon and interviewing people to find my own replacement!
On to weekly wishes!
Last week’s wishes were to:
1) Get 2 weeks worth of blog posts planned and written.
2) Study for my SpEd licensure exams.
3) Drink more water.
Y’all. I failed more than just a little on these goals last week. Ugh.
I definitely didn’t get blog posts written and scheduled- I hardly even posted last week and didn’t schedule anything for while I was out of town! I did study for my exams but not nearly as much as I should have- my exams are this coming weekend! AHH! And really I did worse on my water intake than I had been.
So I’m just going to keep these goals and let them rollover to this week. Hopefully you all did better with your goals than I did! Let me know in the comments!
Today I’m introducing a new travel series here on the blog- Travel Tuesday! Once a week I’m going to begin sharing some of my favorite destinations around the world. I’ve traveled around but I definitely haven’t been everywhere I want to go yet! Have you been to a super awesome place that you want to share about? Shoot me and email and we can work out some guest posting details!
Without further ado–
Mexico was my first trip abroad, and the place I’ve returned to most. I first visited on a vacation with my family when I was in my pre-teen years, but really returned and lived for the first time as an exchange student in my sophomore year of high school.
At 15 years old, I packed my life into 2 suitcases and went to live with strangers.
Strangers who, even after all these years, I still consider family.
Just look at these faces! The sweet woman in the middle is Mama Luz, my grandmother who just celebrated her 88th birthday!
As a Rotary Youth Exchange Student, I met other students from around the world that all took part in a year-long exchange. Though we were spread out throughout the year, every few months Rotary would throw us an event so we could all get together and enjoy the camaraderie that comes from shared experiences. The ladies in the picture below were all a part of that group and are still close friends of mine. I’ve visited a few in their home countries since we’ve all returned!
Brazil, Canada, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Belgium, Poland, France, and the USA
In addition to that I was also lucky enough to be able to do quite a bit of traveling throughout the country and ended up seeing some incredible sights. These of course included the pristine, goldenrod, beaches of Acapulco and Cancun, among others.
I was able to visit the ruins of where my own ancestors once lived and thrived many, many years ago.
Ruins at Palenque, where history tells us my family came from. Fun fact, the girl with me, Sarah, just got married this past weekend! (Congrats, Sarah!)
Throughout the year, I lived with 3 different families, each giving me a unique perspective into culture and life in the city of Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico. My own mother was also able to visit in the Spring, and we were able to travel around a bit because I had already visited several places with my host families!
My first host family had children with whom I speak with on a regular basis and love with my whole heart. My youngest sister just had her Quinceañera this past weekend, which just seems like she’s growing too fast! Isn’t she supposed to stay 7 forever?
The whole family 🙂 My youngest sister is the second one from the left. How in the world has she grown so much?
My final host family consisted of only my host mother and myself. I still call her quite often and call her “Mama” because we really connected during my time there. It was just us on our own (her biological daughter was on exchange in Brazil while I was there) so we would adventure out every Saturday morning to a new place. Because of her, I was able to see more places around where we lived that I didn’t even realize existed!
On one of the trips Mama Sofie took me on.
My third host mother, Mama Sofie
It was also because of her that I learned to make killer guacamole, among other foods.
My time in Mexico saw my change from little girl into young woman, and really solidified my love of travel. After my exchange year, my whole life would change as I continued to have that travel bug and explored new places. More on that in the coming weeks!
Have you ever been out of the country? What was the first place you traveled that really grabbed your heart and gave you the desire to not only return, but continue traveling and learning about other places?
An “after” picture from The Color Run! More photos and a post about that coming later this week!
This weekend was a blast! Between The Color Run and visiting the Food Truck Park on Saturday and staying in Sunday for an evening of superhero movies and Mexican food with the boy, it was just full of fun and exciting things.
It’s definitely a Monday around here though! We’ve got a thunderstorm here today that, while beautiful and sleep inducing, has created a very wet and gloomy environment here in City Hall! Since my desk is located right under the giant skylight, every time the lightening strikes the whole area lights up!
In addition to that, all this rain has either found a way into my apartment, or my brand new freezer is broken. Either way, my kitchen floor was covered in water this morning. I got most of it sopped up with towels and called my leasing office, so I’ll just hope that they can figure it out today while I’m at work. Not a huge deal, but definitely an inconvenience this morning sine we can’t foresee these complications.
For those of you who are new around here, Weekly Wishes is a time to set goals and keep ourselves accountable for being productive throughout the week. Since I began setting these goals I’ve realized how much more I can get done when I have concrete things to work toward.
Last week I set my monthly goals for April, so this week I’ll reflect on the week before and set up goals for this week!
Last time’s goals were to:
1) Finish putting up artwork around my apartment.
2) Heal my sprained ankle.
3) Meal and Grocery Plan
4) Plan a Stone Mountain day with friends.
I am proud to say that ALL of my goals were accomplished! My apartment looks so much better now and feels like a home when I step into it with my now-strong ankle! My meals for the week are planned out so I don’t have to think about it when I get home, and a great day at Stone Mountain gave us all a workout and some time to catch up with each other without the daily distractions of the city.
This week, my goals are to:
1) Get 2 weeks worth of blog posts planned and written. This one is cheating a little because I already have 1 week done, but I want to reach further and push myself to get more done.
2) Study A TON for my SpEd licensure exams. I have SO much to read and learn in the next two weeks before I have to take my tests! I’m nervous about how these tests will go.
3) Drink more water. I’ve been doing good about working out but I know my body is dehydrated.
Today I decided to let Alfred Angelo take over my blog for a bit. He certainly has a lot to say, though not a whole lot of it is about beautiful wedding dress designs.
The dude has no interest in this. The nerve, right?
Without further ado, I think I’ll step aside because my cat really is a pretty interesting guy.
Hello, readers of The Journey, I know my mom is usually the one doing all the talking around here, but I feel like I should get a turn once in a while. Especially because I take care of the house ALL DAY while she’s off at adult day-care. She calls it work, but whatever. I guard the house, make sure it smells like me, drink all the water drops left in the tub, get rid of bugs, and I work hard!
But first, let me take a selfie!
Let me share with you what my day is like. This is the real work.
Each day starts at 4am, for all interested.
4:03am: Mom won’t get up. She’s been laying in that bed for FOREVER now. I don’t think she loves me anymore. I think she forgot about me. I should cry about it and yell throughout the whole house to remind her that she needs to love on me RIGHT NOW.
6:20am: She’s finally up! Wait, why is she closing the bathroom door? PANIC! There’s a lot of noise going on in there. Is that water? I like water. Let me do a couple laps around the house to see if I can find some.
6:27am: Oh, the water was in my bowl. I had to step in it to find it though.
6:36am: PRAISE she opened the door. Time for me to take my watch post here on the toilet seat. I don’t know how this woman would ever get ready in the mornings without me staring at her and mentally telling her how to do each step of her hair and makeup.
6:55am: Breakfast Tiiiiiime! Mom is still doing make up. Time to cry until she realizes my bowl is only half full and I clearly need a whole bowl to survive ALL day working around here. Better run a couple more laps around the house to make sure everything’s ok.
don’t forget my food, don’t forget my food, don’t forget my food…
7:40am: I know it’s time for her to go adult day care and for my work day to begin. But I don’t really want to work today, I want to go EXPLORE THE WILDERNESS outside the apartment. I know my one and only chance to debouch is to dart through the door while Mom’s paying attention to not spilling her oatmeal as she leaves. Time to try…
7:45am: Plans foiled.
7:50am-5:30pm: Play, nap, watch out the window. Nap, play, scratch on the tree. Nap. Roll around on the carpet. Make sure no one breaks in the house. Nap.
5:32pm: Mom’s hoooooomeeee! I better cry out of joy so she doesn’t forget that I’m here. Mooooooommmm!!! Plaaaaaay!
6:45pm: WHAT IN THE WORLD IS SHE DOING?! This woman is jumping and laying down and pushing herself up over and over again. Why is that man talking to her like he’s here? He’s on the TV! Why is she sweating? It’s only 30 minutes!
Cuddling while sweating? EW! Look at my face!
7:30pm: Closed the door to the bathroom again. Sounds of water again. Who knows what wonderful drinks of shower water I’m missing right now.
8:00pm: Now that I’ve sufficiently crawled all over her and planted myself firmly on her stomach, I am satisfied for the day. I don’t feel the need to do much of anything anymore. It’s been an exhausting day and tomorrow I’ll have to do it all again.
But it’s worth it for this woman who feeds and loves me. I guess I kind of like her too.
Bed time, I have a strict 4am wake up time for guard duty.
Today I’m going to share with you one of my favorite recipes that also just so happens to be one of the easiest and most fool-proof ways to make a hearty dinner that looks like you spent much more time on than you did. Cheating, I know.
But they are DELICIOUS and take about 20 mins from prep to table.
And just look at them!
Today’s Creative Collective prompt was to make Pinterest real. Yep, take any pin and make it happen! I’d been wanting to share these bread bowls for a while, so today seems like as good a day as any! They are SO simple and SO delicious. You’re welcome.
First off, start with your favorite package of refrigerated dough. I use biscuit dough because I think it turns out the best tasting but you can use crescent roll dough or bread dough or make your own dough if you’re feeling fancy.
Then just roll (or squish) it flat and lay it over the greased bottom of a muffin tin. The dough will thicken in the oven so make it a thinner layer than you think you need!
Stick those upside down biscuits in the oven and voila! 10 minutes later you have some delicious bread bowls!
I made some chicken pot pie filling to go in mine which was super yummy, but you can really use any kind of soup for some dinner deliciousness.
There you go! Linking up today with Melyssa for The Creative Collective!