Sunday, March 26, 2017

6 Months in Cleveland

So it's been half a year already, and Maikal is almost done his 1st year of Dental School! How crazy is that!? We will officially be done around May 10th, then we will be hanging around for a few last minute things then heading back to Canada for the Summer. And I couldn't be more excited.




But, over the past 6 months, I have been asked quite a few times, "How are you liking Cleveland?"

So to better answer this question, I think I will do a Pro's and Con's list about living here. Here we go:


Con's:

- People park ON THE ROAD. Like we will be driving down a 2 lane street, then all of a sudden BAM....there's a car right in your way so you need to ninja dodge to the other lane then make your way back, but then BAM..theres another one. So I just keep it safe and try to stay in the left lane as much as I can.

- The Traffic Lights. Did you know the street light was invented in Cleveland?? Yup. Therefore, there are 3x's as many lights just to show them off! I swear....one on EVERY block. And a ton of them are on YOUR side of the intersection (not across), so I have to lean forward and look so far up just to see when the light turns green, or else I would never know.

- The Intersections. The CRAZIEST intersections I haver EVER seen. I remember when Becca and I first got there, we went through this one intersection and I screamed through it because I thought I was going to get hit. It has about 8 roads going in and out of it. And the traffic lights are all intertwined facing all the different roads so you know when its your turn. They are sooooo crazy you guys.

- Road Maintenance. Basically the only roads you will find without holes and cracks are the ones on the outside with the 'really rich' homes. Our van takes a beating every time we go somewhere.

- School System. From what I hear, it's not good. Obviously I will get a better idea once Ben goes to school I think. Education is very very important to me so I hope it all goes well.

- We are far from family and friends. Obviously it's hard being away from our families, and the kids not seeing their cousins and grandparents. But it's also kind of nice being on our own doing our own thing so far away.

- The Panhandlers. I'm not sure if this is a Big City thing, or just a Cleveland thing. I've never lived in a big city before. But the amount of time's myself and Maikal have been approached by people for money is crazy. And a lot of them dont even look poor or look like they 'need' it. This one time I was just grocery shopping and this guy comes up to me (he had his wife and kid and a cart of groceries already) and asked me for money to by his groceries........I dunno I thought that was weird. And that happens quite often. So I just say no now lol. If I have a granola bar I give them that instead.

- The Crime. If you don't know this already, Cleveland is in the top 10 most Crime ridden Cities in the USA. We hear sirens EVERY SINGLE NIGHT before we go to bed. We also get reports of crime ALL the time. People getting mugged, killed, children being stolen, our bank was robbed twice in 1 month at gun point. Last month or so, I got an email a few hours after the fact, this girl was dragged down her own driveway by two men and they tried to take her. She fought back and won. But this happened 5 houses down. If I was watching out my front door, I could have seen the whole thing. I went to bed crying that night. That could have been me coming home from an activity late or coming back from picking up groceries. So the next day I bought pepper spray haha. I never go out after dark, and I am always feeling the need to look over my shoulder.

The Crime is what gets me the most. I think about my babies safety all the time. I hear these stories of child abductors and break in's.....and my stomach will turn for days. Growing up, these things weren't really around me. I felt safe enough to leave my house and car unlocked most of the time! I would walk at countless hours at night and not think twice about 'bad people' lurking around the corner. So it's just A LOT all at once. My paranoia is getting better though haha. Just gotta keep on my toes! I swear my anxiety and paranoia levels went up 1000% now that I have a little family.

Pro's:

- The Old-ness. OK you guys the houses and old churches and buildings........are AMAZING!!!!! Like think 'old rich United Kingdom in the Country'. Lots of the houses are huge and look like small castles. And they are wicked cheap. We were looking into buying a house, but with us not being USA citizens, it made it basically impossible.

- With Cleveland being a big city, there seems to be a lot of stuff to do. Museums, libraries, parks, nature walks, zoo, farms, restaurants, etc. And of course Lake Erie is right there! They have a nice beach, and you know how much I love my beaches! And we are super close to Canada so if im ever craving some 'real chocolate' (Sorry USA but your choc is nasty) then I can go get some (4 hour trip but whatever, choc is always worth it).

- The people. Even though half the time Im worried that this stranger is going to take my kid, they actually end up smiling and giving me the biggest compliments and basically being the sweetest human beings ever. And of course I have made some pretty awesome friends, and so have my kids! Which has been such a blessing.

- The Dental School. CASE has been highly ranked for years and Maikal is getting such an amazing education. And yes he is loving it! Although he feels like he's going to fail all the time. But he's a smarty pants so I know he will rock it!

- The weather!!! Our friends and family who lived over in this area told us that the winters were going to be so bad and that the humidity would make the cold cut straight through our clothes......ya that didn't happen at all. I felt like its been spring for the past 4 months. It's awesome cuz we hate the cold! A soon as I moved here, it felt exactly like Hawaii weather again, and it was glorious. I loooove it.


SO, there's a small list. We are Happy and things are going very well here. We found our groove and I cant wait for more adventures to come.

xoxo

Friday, March 17, 2017

St Patrick's Day | The Facts

Happy St Patrick's Day!



In case none of you have guessed, I am 50% Irish. I know, it's hard to tell...... ;)
It is a huge dream of mine to go to Ireland one day and explore the culture that makes up half of me. Actually Maikal applied to Dental School in Ireland....I was definitely rooting for that one haha.

But just like a ton of people in North America, I didn't really know what St Patrick's Day was truly about. I thought it was about Leprechauns and pinching people! So here is a little write up of what we are actually celebrating today!

"The Day of the Festival of Patrick"

* St Patrick's Day is celebrating the annual death of St Patrick. He is believed to have died 460 AD. It was originally a very large feast celebration but has now become so much more than that.

* St Patty is celebrated because he is the one who Ministered Christianity in Ireland in the 5th Century.

* Irish people have been celebrating this holiday for thousands of years. Pretty impressive!

* Why do we wear green? It was believed that wearing green made you invisible to the leprechauns, and if you were caught not wearing green, they would pinch you as a result! 

* Why specifically green? St Patty taught the Holy Trinity with a Green Shamrock and a 3 leaved plant, all Green items.

You guys, I've always LOVED St Patricks Day. Any day that partly celebrates wearing my absolute favourite colour is a good day in my books. It is my goal in life to actually celebrate this holiday IN Ireland. And I invite all my Irish friends and family to join!

I hope everyone is having a fabulous day and aren't getting too many pinches! Happy Weekend!



Sunday, February 26, 2017

Ben is 5

"Age is merely the number of years the world has been enjoying you"

5
Five. 
F..I..V..E

I....have a five year old. I feel like 5 is such a big number because it means he will be taking his first real steps into the School world this Fall. Well, technically summer, but I hate saying that school STARTS in summer. It's just so wrong. But school is a big deal!

Ben, you came into our lives as one of the biggest surprises we've ever experienced. With each year passing by, I can feel our relationship grow and grow. And I hope it never stops. As each year passes by, I get more and more excited about the new life you are going to experience. The new things you will learn. The new people you will meet. But at the same time, I want it to slow down. Sometimes I feel like it's going by so fast and you will be moving out of the house by tomorrow!

Ben you are incredibly sensitive. Whenever someone is hurt, you are the first one to go and comfort that person. You are very adventurous. You love to climb, jump, swim, and run over anything and everything. You are still obsessed with cars, and I don't see that slowing down lol. Your freckled nose and big blue eyes slay me everyday. Still can't decided who you look more like, Maikal or I, but I think time will tell. I would also like to apologize for all the changing hair cuts. I just can't make a decision. And I also suck at hair, sorry kid. You are a fantastic big brother and love to play with your little sister. Even though she beats you up sometimes..... (you guys terrible twos are real).

Thank you for being such a fantastic big boy for us. We LOVE YOU!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine' Day | Lovey Dovey Stuff

Oh hey! Im blogging two days in a row! Who am I?

So im just going to start this lovey dovey Valentines Day post off with some Love quotes that describe a little about us:

"I know I'm a handful, but that's why you got two hands"

"I'm pretty sure I didn't meet you for nothing"

"Marry the one who gives you the same feeling you get when you see food coming in a restaurant"

"She knew she loved him when 'home' went from being a place to being a person"


So as stated on my previous post, we don't go full out buying gifts or anything for VDay. But I do love the cuddles, the sweet words, the yummy dinners, personal notes, etc ;) All I asked for Vday this year were some cute bedroom photo's of us cuddling and being all cutesie haha. So thanks for being a good sport Maikal ;) Love your guts.

And of course I need to say a few heart warming things about my love. Get ready to vomit ;) 

Maikal has made me a better person in every way possible. If you know Maikal, you know he is loud, opinionated, and passionate. Before marrying him, I would consider myself one of the shyest people you would ever meet. Never would I have ever raised my hand to answer anything, give my opinion of anything in a discussion, confront anyone, share thoughts on whatever. Its always been something I've wanted to change about myself, but just didnt know how. He really has rubbed off on me and I feel like I have grown a new sense of self and confidence. Which is one of the best feelings in the world! We have grown together as a couple, but we have also grown separately as better human beings. 

Some of my favourite things about him:


1) His laugh. Man, when Maikal really gets going, his laugh is one of the best sounds in the world.
2) His love for God and Family.
3) The way he plays with our kids. Is it not the cutest thing seeing your spouse wrestle and chase your kid(s) around the house? I die.
4) His friends. Which have turned into my friends. Some of the BEST people you will ever meet. 
5) His work ethic. As you know Maikal started Dental School in Aug, and he studies hard to get the grades he needs, and he nails it! 
6) His love for the ocean. When we go on a trip, it's like his happy place is in the waves/water. He turns into a little kid again with no care in the world. Its basically the cutest.
7) His hair. K I know this is a weird one, but he has never grown out his hair before and never had a good man bun. Which I am obsessed with. He got through the awkward hair stage and it is amazing now. Long and black and smooth! Mmmmmmm.
8) Baby Respect. Before getting married, I knew he wanted 6 kids, and he knew I wanted 4. But I said I could maybe do 6, we will see how it goes. (I may or may not have just said that to get him to marry me lol.) Obviously it hasn't gone as planned so far lol. But he as NEVER pushed me to have more kids if I didn't want them or when to have them. He knows I will be carrying them and going through the birth and everything that comes after that. I think a man's respect level for his wife goes up 1000 notches when he see's that baby exit his wife lol. 

Obviously there are endless things I love about him, but I don't want to make you read a novel lol. Instead I will just leave you with these pictures. Happy Valentines Day everyone!!



Monday, February 13, 2017

How We Wore It | Day to Night

Valentines day is tomorrow! Personally, Im not much of a VDay celebrator. Maikal and I don't usually buy things for one another, we just spend time together, go on a date or whatever! So this outfit post is based around date night!
SO for How We Wore It series this month, we decided to try and do a "day to night' look. Basically, keeping the same main pieces, but styling small things differently such as hair, accessories, shoes, etc. And honestly, I could just as easily wear my day look on a date haha. But other than Sunday, I don't usually wear heels so it's a good excuse to get a little more fancy!

Now, when I try to dress up all fancy, I try to revolve my clothing around my Hair colour. Is that weird?? I just feel like it's my best feature so I like to make it pop! And colours that do that are Greens and Creams/Neutrals. Hence the Cream Detailed shirt. Picked this beauty up at Goodwill! Don't you love finding treasures at thrift stores!? Especially in your size! Is it not the worst when you find that dress, those jeans, that jacket, that is exactly what you want, but its the complete wrong size? The worst.



So here is my DAY look: 


And here is my NIGHT look:


DAY look:

Top:: ZARA , sold out, but also love THIS

Jeans:: Bluenotes, old, love THESE

Shoes:: Target, old, love THESE

NIGHT look:

Necklace:: Ardene

Shoes:: Bluenotes, old, but love THESE


Check out my fabulous blogger friend to see how she wore it!