Wednesday, February 29

deep down in my heart

i got some upsetting news today. when i was little my parents sent me away to summer camp every single summer. and then when i was old enough to not go to summer camp anymore, i stayed anyway and started working there. and then my last year there i was a cabin counselor and slept in a cabin for three months.

i can say without a single doubt that my summers at Camp Ma-Kee-Ya were the best times of my life.

those girls that you see up in those photos, jen, lisa, and nina,  have been some of the best girl friends i have ever had and we all met at camp almost a decade ago. we all came from different towns but every summer we would reunite at summer camp and never want to leave (and sometimes we didnt).

well anyway, i could go on writing about camp for pages and pages (and maybe one day i will) but for now i can only reminisce. i got an email today saying that Camp Ma-Kee-Ya will no longer be in Harriman State Park. it is essentially gone forever. i know so many people wont understand why this is such a big deal to me and my camp friends because if you're not a "summer camp kid" you really cant understand.

but at least i have hundreds of pictures to look at and all of the memories to laugh about with my girls.


Sunday, February 26

a little sunday fun

today we went to taco bar for a late lunch/early dinner. i had been doing work all afternoon so we forgot about lunch and decided to walk down to taco bar to eat. we had been there once when it first opened about two months ago but we didnt eat anything that time. today we got chicken fingers and fish sticks (really healthy right) and a side plate so that we could fill up at the salad bar. everything was so delicious. they had pesto pasta (my childhood/later in life favorite), spinach salad, asian cole slaw, green beans, and sooo many yummy things that you can go back for as many times as you want. and of course we got strawberry banana smoothies because somehow they are just a little bit better than the ones we make at home.

since we literally ate our weight in food we decided we couldnt walk home just yet. in fact we couldnt really walk at all we were so full. thankfully, taco bar has some hammocks that you can chill out on for this exact reason. so thats what we did! we rested a little bit and then walked back home so i could finish all my lesson plans for this week. which i am pretty excited about! nerd i know.

i hope everyone else had a lovely weekend!

Thursday, February 23

as of late, according to my camera phone

as promised, i have a little update of what i have been doing these past two weeks since i havent had time or energy to blog about it. excuse the quality of some of these photos but my camera phone isnt as fancy as some of you iphone users!

we have been making a lot of smoothies lately. on sundays we go to the feria to buy a bunch of fruit and then we use it to make smoothies at night. our favorite so far is blackberry, strawberry, banana!

i already told you about the wedding but that was a picture of my hair from behind. it was exactly what i wanted something really simple but off of my shoulders.

we went to a saprissa soccer game which is paris's favorite team. it was the first game he ever went to! the national stadium was really nice and even though the game ended in a tie we enjoyed ourselves and had some really good calzones too.

every time we go to the mall i ask to look at the dogs in the pet store and i die every time. so this last time we were close to buying that cute little pug in the picture! i cant even describe how adorable he was ... however he was also quite expensive so we said thanks for letting us hold him but no thanks. so we've been spending some extra time with good ol' isaac ;)

Wednesday, February 22

hi everyone, my name is britta and this is my blog...

OH HEY...i thought maybe i would introduce myself again since you prooooobably forgot who i am because i have been blog MIA for the past two weeks. but i'm gonna do my best to find as much time to update as i can!

sooooooooooooooooo the biggest news as of late has to do with that picture right up there! yes everyone, those 12 little check marks signify that i am officially allowed to work here in costa rica! i'm legal! after my failed attempt two weeks ago i was even more frustrated because i just felt like all my effort over the past 4 months was shut down when the man at migraciĆ³n told me the three things i was still missing.... ugh. but this morning i marched right up to the same officer (okay so i waited almost 2 hours and by chance had the same officer) and demanded he accepted my documents! (well i politely asked him how he was and the proceeded to listen to him talk about how much he likes florida). but who cares right?! he took my mounds of paperwork and gave me this one piece of paper and told me, "this will allow you to stay here in costa rica." HALLELUJAH.

obviously more things have happened in the past two weeks, for example I STARTED WORKING. but more to come on that tomorrow (i promise i'm gonna try really hard for tomorrow!)


Sunday, February 12

goin' to the chapel

one of paris's sister got married on friday and the wedding was so darling. it was a short civil ceremony in one of the nicest hotels in the area and then a reception to remember that lasted a good 7 hours. i spent most of the afternoon getting ready with the bride and the bridesmaids painting our nails, getting our hair done, and doing our makeup.. you know all that girly stuff.

once the ceremony was over and we got to the reception the real party began. there was a buffet style dinner with everything from cesar salad, to seafood salad, pork, beef, and some of the best desserts i've ever had. no joke, the strawberry mouse with kiwi pieces on top was heaven in my mouth. we probably had about 6 of the little cups on our plate when the waiter came over and was like .. uhhh can i clear that for you...? mmm so good.

anyway we danced a lot until my feet hurt a ton from my shoes and i took them off and danced a little more. they whipped out some carnival masks and hats at one point and everyone had fun with that.

one thing though... who knew it was normal that for a night time wedding all females wore a floor length gown? because this gal didnt. i was one of maybe two females not wearing a floor length gown and imagine how silly i felt! i was thinking how cute is this dress that i bought for 50% off during christmas time! only to find out that everyone probably thought i was just that silly gringa girl who doesnt know the appropriate attire to wear to a wedding...

either way everyone still had a good time and thats all that matters right? lets hope so!

Wednesday, February 8

the civil wars

i just read that the group The Civil Wars will be performing at the grammy awards this year. i've been meaning to do a little post about them for a while now but i figured since they just scored this pretty big performance i thought now would be a good time to do so. the civil wars were brought to my attention just last year and i immediately downloaded their album and fell in love. they are just one girl, Joy Williams, and one guy, John Paul White, but together they make some really beautiful music. as a duo they have actually been together for a few years now but have just recently become really popular after they self-released their first album together, Barton Hollow.

it was actually a few years ago that i heard one of their songs on grey's anatomy (my fav show btw) and i really really loved it but had no idea what the name of the song was or who was singing it. then just last year i was watching a rerun of grey's and i heard the song again and remembered how much i had loved it and desperately tried to find out who it was. low and behold it was the song Poison and Wine by The Civil Wars, which is by far the best song on their album. the lyrics of this song are actually pretty sad but their voices combine together to make a bone-chilling yet addictive sound.

it is really great to see how far these guys have come because they are incredibly talented and make such lovely music together. below i have the Poison and Wine video (which you might end up watching more than once it is so good!) as well as their single Barton Hollow which is a little more uplifting and fun. enjoy! and try to check out their grammy performance!

Tuesday, February 7

workin' girl

i was going to do a "weekend pt 2" post yesterday but i was too busy with getting work done and now i don't think it would be appropriate on tuesday to talk about last weekend because i'm already looking forward to this weekend. however i will say that i got very sunburned on left shoulder and it still really hurts!

work so far this week has been interesting. between yesterday and today i met almost all of my students' parents and a lot of my students too. most of the parents were extremely nice and thought it was great that they have a native english speaker teaching their students english (phew).

i'm a little bit nervous because by the end of the week i have to have next week's lesson plans done including a diagnostic test for both grade levels and i havent even received all of the textbooks yet! i'm hoping that since next week will be a short week, i'll be able to get by with things like class rules, ice breaker games, and the diagnostic test, before i have to start using lessons from the books.

also, now that i've started working and am not always around the house i've had to really try to remember what i said in this post about cleaning the house little by little each day because what a mess it has so quickly become! today's challenge: the bathroom. wish me luck ;)

Sunday, February 5


we bought a fridge for our apartment this week! its been pretty empty because we haven't really had time to go to the store and paris has been saying for days, "lets go buy something to put in the fridge..." so finally today we did! we went to the feria downtown that happens every sunday where a TON of fruit and vegetable vendors come along with a few cheese, meat, fish, and food vendors. we scored lots of blackberries, strawberries, "water apples" which are basically what they sound like .. apples but less condensed with more water, a watermelon, and a pineapple all for less than $10! and now our fridge is stocked full of fruit for the rest of the week. as we say down here "que rico" ;)

Thursday, February 2

workin' girl

i have a classroom! well, i don't actually have my own classroom, i will be moving back and forth between two classrooms but... it feels like i have a classroom!

i started work yesterday (which already feels like a week ago) and i couldnt be more excited. the past two days have just been a bunch of teacher meetings (how important am i, right?), decorating classrooms, and getting to know my new co-workers! it has been really nice so far, even though a little overwhelming. next week starts teacher-parent interviews and thank goodness the english teachers do not have to conduct the whole interview! we just have to introduce ourselves and give the parents their children's textbooks.

getting all of the information that i have gotten in the past few days has definitely made my head spin a little bit. i already have due dates! thank goodness for the two different planners, the 5 different colored pens i bought today, and my very girly paper clips that i think i will be able to keep myself quite organized.

and then after next week ... the students come. i am half looking forward to it and half dreading it although i have a feeling after the first two weeks i will have a good handle on things (fingers crossed anyway).