Not Quite Homesick

Not quite homesick: I can’t believe how fast time has gone by. I have been in the US for 25 days already. That’s almost a whole month. I have moments where I feel like I just arrived yesterday and moments where it feels like I have always been here. Sometimes though, I just have to stop what I’m doing and remind myself where I am. In the US. Me. Living here. Quite CRAZY!

I was able to meet some of the other Au Pairs in the area at a painting event hosted by the agency. We have a cultural event every month where we get together and do something fun. This time we met at a place called Wine & Canvas. Everyone learns to paint the same painting. I’m not quite happy the way mine turned out. And not because I had too much wine. On the contrary… I didn’t have any. I did have fun though. Anyway, this is what it looks like. My “Minnesota Winter Sunset”.

FullSizeRender

Minnesota Winter Sunset

Our next event will be a scavenger hunt at the Mall of America. I will report back to you on that… if I don’t get lost.

Another thing the agency does, is try to prepare you for those times you feel homesick. They advise you to talk to friends, spend time with your host family, get out and about and not lock yourself in your room. My host family is awesome! They have been so welcoming. I love spending time with them and their extended family. We have had some fun times, whether it be at the waterpark in Duluth or just being at home, listening to 70s music and Jimmy Fallon’s tight pants song while sitting on the porch by the fire roasting marshmallows. 🙂

Also, I have made some friends. One very good one in particular. I am lucky to have a wonderful Au Pair living only 3 minutes away with whom I go to get Coldstone ice cream and watch terrible movies at the local theatre. We should really read the reviews before we spontaneously decide to see R rated movies and end up breaking each other’s arms when we squeeze them so tight during the scary parts of the film. Even the PG-13 one was bad. I couldn’t sleep last night. Although that could also be because my amazing sister Lilly was on a plane heading home to Germany after being away for 6 months in Australia with YWAM and I couldn’t be there to welcome her. The first moment I wanted to be back home since being here. I have realised that it’s not really home I miss, but the special family moments that I will not be able to experience. I admit it: I felt a little sad, but not quite homesick. I am beyond grateful for modern technology and its ways of helping people stay in touch. My Mama facetimed me from the car on their way home from the airport. It was almost like I was there. Except I was here, eating cereal out of a big bowl with milk out of an even bigger jug and drinking Starbucks coffee that is available for purchase at the Super Target 10 minutes away, near the mall where I bought all those nice clothes on sale. Life is not so bad 😉

Love, Sophie x

In case anyone is interested in what Lilly has been up to, this is a video she produced. It shows the amazing work she and her team did on their mission trip to the Philippines with YWAM. I’m so proud of all of them!

PS: I never thought I’d have the “Tight Pants Song” and a YWAM outreach video in the same blog post 😀

 

Shop ’til you drop… or run out of money… or not.

Shop til you drop: So these past couple of weeks have been quite full. I have had the pleasure of meeting some of my host family’s extended family (in Wisconsin I might add). I have had lots of fun days taking care of the kids, taking them to school, the indoor park and story time at the local library, and playing Frozen with our make belief ice palace made out of pillows and blankets. I get to be Elsa which is awesome; particularly because they ask me to sing Let It Go and strut across the room in a very determined manner. Those of you who know me will know that I genuinely enjoy it. 😀

Another thing I am enjoying is the shopping. 40% off your entire purchase at Old Navy, 60% clearance at American Eagle, 8$ for a hoody at Aeropostale… heaven. Although I’m sure heaven will have better sales 😉 Anyway, I have acquired some new clothes, but I’m still looking for a nice pair of warm boots. All I can find is sandals. Apparently Minnesotans think its summer as soon as the temperature goes above 10 degrees celsius. Sounds a little familiar, doesn’t it fellow Brits? 🙂

One thing that makes this experience different from a vacation in the US, is that I won’t really run out of money, since I am allowed to work and thus earn money. Yay! On holiday you get to week three and start digging into the savings account and start contemplating major life choices over a pair of really cute shoes you see… on sale. Also, you don’t run the risk of being in trouble when you pull out Daddy’s credit card for one last burger at an authentic American diner. It was totally worth it though!

All in all I am enjoying life here. Driving is a little less frightening. I’ve mastered the 4 way stop signs, the turning right on red and even some high way action; although that was unintentional after trying to find my way home without the GPS on my way back from Old Navy, after returning an impulse buy due to the overwhelming sensation of that 40% off entire purchase deal. Shop, stop and go.

Love, Sophie x