Showing posts from September, 2017

Mexican Pizza

Like almost everything else here in Mexico 🇲🇽 it comes with a side of salsa - and while it may look a little different than most pizzas 🍕 in the States, it's basically the same thing (in my opinion). 
This bad boy cost us 200 pesos, which included the 15 peso tip to the delivery driver (about $11 USD). And it's been a tradition since we first came to Mazatlán last November. 
Actually, we've had a long standing family tradition of pizza and either watching movies or playing games on Friday nights. But when we moved to Mexico, I switched our Netflix account to Spanish, and only let the kids watch TV shows and movies in Spanish. 
Except for Friday nights. Friday nights fondly became known as "English Movie Night" at our house. Even during our time home in the States for the summer, I did my best to have them watch everything in Spanish... except for on "English Movie Night" 🎥  🍿 
Ordering the pizza was probably one of the biggest challenges we faced as a …

Un día en la vida... A day in the life

So many people have expressed concern about our decision to move to Mazatlan, Mexico. After all, it is in the state of Sinaloa, known as one of the most dangerous drug cartel states in the country, and the city where the famed "El Chapo" was captured back in 2014.

Articles like these saturate the American media and perpetuate the cycle of fear.
We were warned of theft, kidnapping, robbery, extortion, even murder. 
We spent 6 months here last winter with our three school aged children. And we just moved back 2 weeks ago to enroll our children in school and spend at least another 10 months here.
We are moving out of our gated coto in the superbs and into the heart of downtown Mazatlán, near Centro, Olas Altas, and the Malecon - one of the longest ocean front boardwalks in the world. 
We have never felt unsafe here. Our kids have never felt unsafe here. We have left our house unlocked and nothing has been stolen. I have walked around the city alone (sometimes even wearing my je…

Cultura Mazatlan

Today, I had the privilege of attending a press release detailing some of the events that Cultural Mazatlan has in store for us this fall. Can I just start out by saying how impressed I am with this organization and what they offer?

Here's a short video that shows many of the great productions that will be offered over the next few months - and you are not going to believe the cost of tickets!? The average price for good seats at an opera for example - 300 pesos (about $17 US).

Jenica and I attended "Il Trovador" on Wednesday night - if you follow me on Instagram you may have seen some of it in our Instastory (if you don't follow us, head over here and check it out. I post a lot about our daily life here in Mexico on Instragram Stories that never makes it to facebook or the blog.)

Now, I've never considered myself much of an opera fan... in fact, I think I may have only attended one opera in my life, and that was over 15 years ago when I spent the summer in Italy…

Living the dream isn't always dreamy

It has always been a dream of mine to have my children become bilingual (while they are young and their minds are like little sponges.) Last winter, as many of you know, my family and I were blessed with the opportunity to spend six months in Mazatlan, Mexico.

We loved the experience so much that we decided to come back and have the kids attend school here for at least a year, and see just how much Spanish they can learn being fully immersed in the culture and community here in Mazatlan. 
We applied for, and were approved for temporary residency visas, which allow us to stay for longer than 6 months (and up to 4 years) at a time. I flew down last month and got the kids registered at a great private school, and Monday we all arrived here in Mazatlan to start this new adventure.
I feel so lucky to be living out the dream I've had for so long... but like the title of this post reads, "living the dream isn't always dreamy." 
The last couple of days have been hard… Like, …

Cost of "affordable healthcare" in the United States

So I was in the middle of another bog post about what influenced our decision to move abroad for a season, with our 3 children (ages 3, 6 and 9).

Affordable health care ranked in the top three for each of us. I quoted a number off the cuff about what I thought it would cost to insure our family of 5 in the United States. My guess was $2,000.

I also prepare United States personal income tax returns for a living, so with the new W2 reporting requirement, I am pretty aware of what health care costs are for companies offering it to their employees, but I hadn't shopped for insurance on the individual market for quite some time. 
The experiment was eye opening to say the least. First of all, in my home state of Oregon, where we lived for the summer with no health insurance, it appears that we would not have even been able to purchase a "major medical plan" since we had no "qualifying reason" to be able to enroll during a non-open enrollment period. 

If you are a non…

Try my services FOR FREE!

I have reached a point in my career where I'd rather shoot than not shoot. I love to be behind the camera. It's my passion. When I'm shooting, time stands still. I see things through my lens in a different way than most people see the world...
It's art, it's beautiful, and it's where I find my joy. I've also rediscovered my love for travel. I love to see new places, meet new people, learn about different cultures, and experience new things. 
So for the next year, I'm offering my services as a second shooter FOR FREE! Yes, you read that right! If I'm in your area, I will second shoot with you (with all my own professional equipment) free of charge with no obligation. If you like what I deliver to you (high res jpeg or RAW images within 48 hours of your booking) you can purchase images individually or as a package (price for all images will not exceed $500.) 
If I am not currently in your area (predominantly Oregon/Mexico), I would still love the opportu…

Sorry... not sorry

So this happened today...

In a moment of frustration my three-year-old chucked  his iPad down a set of stairs, thus cracking the screen. 
But here's the deal… I don't think I ever would've bought my three-year-old an iPad. To me, three years old is way too young to be spending time in front of a screen. The iPad that he had was actually my first iPad that I ever owned probably a good seven or eight years ago. It had been passed down through Jenica, Tenley, and now onto Kenton because Jenica and Tenley both saved up enough money to buy their own personal screens. 
The thing is, I'm not even sorry. When Tenley came to me scared, knowing she needed to show me that Kenton had destroyed his very expensive toy, I didn't feel angry, or upset, or even disappointed. I felt relieved. I felt relieved that my three-year-old would now experience a natural consequence of his actions, which meant no more screen time for him. 
Because the truth is, in my opinion, he is not developed e…