Meeting Other Expats: My Advice As Told To Expats Blog!!

Friends, Mexico, Mexico City, American Benevolent Society

Who Doesn’t Love Rubber Gloves At Cocktail Hour?

Last week, I wrote an article on Meeting Other Expats for Expats Blog. This web site is a wonderful resource for expats. Expats Blog is a collective of expat blog posts, reviews, expat interviews and contests. My article was published on their website today. Check it out! And, of course, I would love to know what you think!!

Expat, friends

If you haven’t already done so, please visit Expats Blog and leave a comment about my blog. Your comment will help to vote me to the top blog in Mexico (I’m just a few votes shy of the lead)!

Please + Thank You!!! And of course, Happy Friday!!!!

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Corporate Gifting: The Gift of Loyalty

It’s my birthday, and my love language is receiving gifts. What I really like to receive on my birthday, are gifts from companies!

Caribou is one of my favorite companies for birthday gifts because they send your gift in advance of your birthday–and it’s something you want: free coffee!

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Noodles and Company is pretty awesome too: who doesn’t enjoy the gift of free food?

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Red Lobster emailed me a coupon for $5.00 off my next meal!! That’s a generous discount–and I’m going to take advantage of it {cheddar biscuits, please!} when we return to the US next month!

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And Peju, a winery with delicious Peju Pink sent along a coupon and a birthday song!!

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I appreciate the annual birthday gesture of the companies. It’s so thoughtful and I’ll be honest, my loyalty can be bought!!

Anthropologie usually sends a small present. They sent something this year, but the card arrived, unfortunately, without present {damaged in the mail}.

Even in Mexico, my favorite place to get a manicure hooked me up with a free manicure for my birthday!!

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Do you have any favorite companies that send you treats on your birthday? If so, I’d love to know–I’d like to add to my list!!!

Have a beautiful day!!!

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On The Cusp Of My Birthday: The Courage To Change The Things I Can!

Birthday Inspiration by Adriana Zehbrauskas

Birthday Inspiration by Adriana Zehbrauskas

Tomorrow is my birthday.

Each year, leading up to my birthday I make resolutions, just like many people do at the beginning of a new calendar year.

Last year, I resolved to stop being miserable and start being happy. A year later, I’m very proud of myself and my progress.

Now, with tomorrow looming, it’s time to set a new goal.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve said to myself, “I wish I weren’t so fat,” or “How did I get so fat?”

Yesterday, I received an updated post from a blogger who runs. Despite having lost a lot of weight, finishing a marathon and inspiring thousands of people, she was bummed about her recent race results. It was hard for me to believe that someone so accomplished could be so hard on themselves.

The more I thought about it, the more it bothered me.

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When it comes to running, my reach exceeds my grasp. I hate running but I wish I could run long distances. I hate being fat, but I don’t run.

That’s not to say that I don’t exercise, but I seem to be able to do everything except run.

As a result, my weight seems to plateau.

I also do screwed up things to punish myself about my weight. Sometimes I tell myself I don’t deserve to eat, and then I don’t. Sometimes I throw perfectly good clothes away because I get sad and discouraged that they’re tight and I feel like I’m never going to wear them again. And sometimes I just eat cupcakes because I am sad and defeated about the entire thing.

It’s screwed up and I’m really ashamed of it.

Even when I think about getting it together, I’m forever telling myself I can’t. So I don’t try.

And that’s what I’m most ashamed of: quitting.

So this year, my birthday gift to myself is going to be a little infusion of courage.

Why shouldn’t I believe in myself? I don’t disappoint other people. Just myself.

Run 5K Interval Training App

Run 5K Interval Training App

Yesterday, after reading the blogger’s post I downloaded the Couch 2 5K app, and I walked outside of my apartment and went running. Tomorrow isn’t promised and I didn’t want to wait.

The run sucked and it was hard.

And in all honesty, it was more walking than running. But I did it. And amazingly, I didn’t die.

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When I showed up at the track, I saw motivational banners surrounding the track. It was nice to have a little silent support.

I completed run one, of week one’s exercise.  And, when I returned home, almost the very moment I walked in the door, Manuela said, “You weren’t gone long. Did you even exercise?” 

And then I felt like shit.

But I remembered that I had just taken the first step–and every journey begins with one step.

So I decided, I’m not going to let the maid kill my buzz.

And I’m going to do something different this year: I’m going to support me and believe in me and run.

It’s really, really hard {so was deciding to be happy} but, this year,  I’m resolving to believe in myself and my goals. And, I’m not going to accept doubt. I deserve more.

This morning, I took step two.

I went on a bike ride with my friend Adriana, who is a physical specimen. She’s like G.I. Jane–and {unfortunately} I didn’t realize that until after we started off on our bike ride.

I have a kid’s bike because my legs are short and I don’t think the gears are correctly calibrated. I was sweating like a pig 10 minutes into the ride. On our outing, we rode really farpast the president’s house, past the zoo, past I don’t know how many museums, and over the highway. And when we were done she asked, “Want to go around again?”

I was like, “I think I am going to die. And, I’m okay with what we did today.

And shortly after we returned from our ride, I whipped out my app and my earphones and I did Day 2 of my Couch 2 5K app.

Even though it sucked I did it {and P.S., I really wanted to die and thought at least twice, “isn’t is crazy that no one ever gets kidnapped while working out??”}.

A few months from now, I’m hoping that Manuela says, Señora, you haven’t gone running three times a week. Is something wrong?” 

And,  I’m hopeful that a year from now, I’m looking back on this post telling you, I’m proud that I dropped the doubt was able to start believing in me, and moving in the direction of my dreams.

Send a little love my way. I need your vibes to conquer my demons.

All my best, KBS

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Expat to Expat Q & A: Travel

Found Love. Now What?

I’ve started to network with other bloggers a bit more. As a result I’ve met some interesting people and had an enjoyable time reading about the expat experiences of others.  One cool blogger, Belinda, at Found Love, Now What?  hosts a fun monthly Link-Up where expat bloggers from around the world answer the same series of questions. This month, Belinda teamed up with another blogger, Lisa, to develop a series of questions. It’s fun to visit Belinda’s blog and see how different people answer. This month, bloggers were asked to answer a series of questions regarding travel. Here are my answers!

1. Which airport would you like to never see again? I’m not a fan of Charles De Gaulle airport. The last time I was there, someone died on the floor. It made me hate that place, permanently. 

2. What is your travel nightmare? Once, on a flight to Phoenix, my son puked on me just as the flight prepared to touch down. The flight attendant placed a plastic hazmat bag over me and made me sit covered in puke, wearing the Hazmat bag while everyone on the plane got off. Sitting in the front of the plane, stinking, covered in puke while everyone looked at me as they deplaned was horrible. That was the last time I flew American airlines.

3. Would your rather stay in a fancy hotel and do less activities or stay in a hostel and do more activities? I love fancy hotels. I would rather stay at a fancy resort, enjoy its amenities and lounge by the pool than stay in a hostel.

Miami hotels hotel fountainbleu

Our Build-A-Bear Likes Luxury: In A Cabana At A Hotel in Miami

4. Do you have any pre-travel rituals? Yes! When I get to the airport, I always purchase the same three items before boarding: a Fiji Water, a medium coffee and a bag of Gummi bears. I’m not sure if it’s ritual or superstition, but I always do the same thing. I’m not ready to board until I have those three items.  

5. What is your favorite airline to fly with? Absolutely Delta Airlines. When we moved to Mexico we shipped our dog via Delta. He got stuck in Mexican customs and the executive leadership team at Delta got him out. The fact that such high level people moved mountains for a member of our family has created an unbreakable bond between Delta and me.

I love them.

When they can, they go above and beyond and I am grateful for it.

Delta airlines pet travel

Thanks, Delta!

6. If you could take a trip anywhere in the world, where would you go? I would return to Hawaii with my husband and son. I lived there one summer and I absolutely loved it. It was truly paradise. We’ve been before and found that it has the best of everything: golf for DH, beautiful beaches for the boy and a unique and special culture–something I love.  Hawaii is my all-time favorite place to visit.

North Shore Hawaii is Paradise!

Hawaii is Paradise!

7.  How do you survive long haul flights? I do three things: stay up all night, watch movies and download one book. 

First, before a long flight, I try to get as little sleep as possible. I do this in an attempt to force sleep on the flight. Second, I am quite legendary for watching movies on my phone-and watch them whenever I can.  I love watching in-flight movies and feel like it’s an opportunity to cheat and catch up on movies.  And lastly, I always download one book just in case the first two plans fail. I have yet to read a book on a flight

8. What is your favorite stamp in your passport and why? My favorite stamp in my passport is my August 2012 Mexico stamp. Moving here changed my life for the better and I am grateful for that stamp and this expat experience. 

Questions from Lisa at Meanderings, Adventures & Crafty Inspirations

Eat Cake For Breakfast Kate Spade bag

Impractical, but perfect for me: Kate Spade Canvas Bag

1. What are your top 3 necessary items for travel? My top three travel items, in no particular order:
My pashmina. I have tons of pashminas. I use them specifically for travel, because I am terrified of airplane blankets and the germs that they carry. 

My Kate Spade “Eat Cake For Breakfast” bag. That bag cost a fortune, it doesn’t zip perfectly or hold my computer exactly right. BUT, I love the bag, it was my treat to myself  and it makes me so happy. I carry it with me on car and plane trips, exclusively. I love it. 

 A hot pink pencil case. I use a pencil case with a zip top to keep all of my passports, FM3 stuff, baggage claim check tickets, and airline plane tickets in. It makes it easier to have everything in one central location. While traveling I feel more organized with my pencil case!

2. What is your off the beaten track trip in your current home? Is this terrible to say? I love Mexico, but I don’t tend to venture off the beaten path here, because those places tend to be very dangerous!

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