A fun little gift idea for people you may not get to see very often, long distance relationships, expats etc are ‘Open When’ letters! They can be as cheap or as expensive as you like because at the end of the day they come from the heart (bleugh I just threw up a little…but it’s true!). The trickiest part is coming up with what to include! I gave some to my mum and sister in England when I moved to America and then in return my mum sent some to me! Hopefully you’ll find these Open When letter ideas helpful!
Woah, long time no see expat update! I can’t believe we’re already half way through 2019 and to be honest, I spent most of time ‘wishing this year away’. I know it’s bad to do that, but it’s been rough. I’m in a slightly better place now, mainly thanks to the distraction that travel brings! So lets try and summarise the first 6 months of this year!
When you’re an expat, there’s an awful lot of things to think about. One thing that’s crossed my mind a few times is “if I was to have children while living in America, there may come a day when I may have to travel alone with them when visiting home”. It’s not quick and simple. Living in Iowa, that’s a 3 hour drive to Chicago, followed by an 8 and a half hour flight on to England…and that’s if you fly direct!
There’s nothing that a British person loves more than to moan about the weather. It’s in our blood. So you can imagine my joy (using the term loosely) when I discovered that Iowa was going to be hit with wind chill temperatures of -50c. All those people back home on my Twitter and Facebook feeds going “It’s -6c/21f!! I’ve never been so cold in my whole life!!”…and I’m sat here like “…well…hold my tea, I’ve got news for you!”. Ladies and gentlemen I give you the Midwest Polar Vortex 2019.
It has been 2 years since I packed up my life in the UK and moved to America. The blogger in me was hoping that by this time I’d be writing posts like ‘how to cope with homesickness’, ‘5 ways to make new friends when living overseas’ etc etc. But the truth is, I suck at being an expat. In real life, I’m struggling and far from being able to offer anyone advice on how to live overseas because I don’t know how to fix it myself. I guess the most I can offer, is that if you are feeling homesick, you’re not alone.
I’m sure I’m not the only British person to have been excited by the American superstore Walmart…I remember when I was preparing for Camp America one of the pieces of advice from returning camp counsellors was “don’t worry about packing too much, the camp director takes everyone on a Walmart run in the first few days”. So Walmart was built up as being the best place ever because if they don’t sell it…then you probably don’t need it, whatever you need, you can get it! When planning our Route 66 itinerary, we even factored in a Walmart stop ‘supermarket sweep’ style…grab a trolley/cart, you have 45 minutes to grab everything in sight!
I recently attended a local ‘Immigration Simulation’ event where everyone was given a ‘character’ with a back story as to why they are trying to get into America. They then had to live out the frustrations of the USA immigration process, and believe me it was just as frustrating as my experience. We were told that the process can take 16 YEARS to go through the whole process and become a citizen.