Matthew. Emma. William. Paul

Matthew. Emma. William. Paul

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Florida's First Impressions

I know I have a lot of catching up to do on this blog but I wanted to type out my first impressions of Florida before they're no longer "first impressions." Plus, these blog entries are my favorite to re-read.

First let just say that I might have ugly cried all 4110 miles from Klamath Falls, OR --> Victoria, B.C. --> Kennewick, WA--> Emmett, ID--> SLC, UT--> Who cares, NE --> Children screaming, KY --> Car ran over cell phone, GA-->Melbourne, FL and then on to St. Cloud.

Oh how I miss Klamath Falls, Oregon and the entire North Kardashian West.  This was a hard move for me and it broke my little Canadian heart. It felt/feels like I left Canada all over again. I know that might sound silly but Oregon looked like British columbia, kinda. It felt similar. I was there with my hippies carrying cloth grocery bags and discussing the horrors of processed foods or carbon footprints. We ran together, organically gardened together and I dreamed of owning an oversized bike to ride my children around in. Sure Klamath Falls was less populated with these people than Eugene but I still discussed communal gardening with neighbors. I loved our new home, loved our neighbors, loved Matt's job, LOVED our friends, loved being back at school, life was pretty rockin'.

And it still is, but it's very different.

1. It is HOT. But serious. Why is it so hot? All. The. Time. I'm not really a fan of this extreme heat, let's blame the red hair, shall we. My people are not meant for this. Today is December 18th and my car read 92 degrees yesterday. 92 degrees!  I have a permanent sweat mustache everyday. I am disgusting. I used to think that I didn't really sweat but now I realize, I just grew up in paradise where its perpetually spring and fall with a dash of summer. I have never pitted out of a shirt in my life and now I know why-- all of my sweat glands are located above my upper lip. How am I supposed to make friends when I have overactive glands? Is there a cream for that? #swstash

2. It is humid and I have Monica Hair. They said the humidity would be gone by now and it is not. I think it's some kind of sick joke to expose my sweatstash. Before me moved, I cut my bangs and was loving them. Within the first week of moving, I realized that bangs were just not going to happen here. In about 5 feet of walking they turn into a sweaty mass pushed off my face with wind--resulting in a pea-cocking affect rivaling William's bed head.  As you can tell, this move has greatly affected my attractiveness in new and humbling ways.

My hair was perfectly straight and this was after an hour at the park. This picture is more flattering than it actually looked and I had already wiped my sweatstash.

3. There are bugs. Big ones. Weird ones. Flying ones. Poison ones. Everywhere.

4. There are fire ants and William is terrified of them. I am too.

5. There are alligators. I underestimated the size and quantity of alligators. Everyone keeps playing down the alligator infestation but they are everywhere. I will never swim in non-salt water ever... unless it is a public pool where I can clearly see that the bottom is gator free!

6. When you think of Florida what do you think of?
 If you think palm trees, old people and a coastline then we basically had the same expectations.


I'm 85% sure we actually life in Africa and Matt just didn't tell me. We're Definitely in the middle of an african rain forest.

7. There are beaches. Beaches everywhere and glorious they are. Every time the fire ants or the humidity kick my trash we head to the beach. We've been a lot.

Paul is gradually warming up to the beach but much prefers the safety of the sand.

8. The grocery stores are different. While I cry offer the loss of Tillamook I rejoice in the british food selection. I have purchased two sleeves of penguins since arriving. If you don't know what those are, I'm really sorry for you.

9. There are frogs and geckoes everywhere. While I know they are harmless, they still scare me. So far a frog has jumped into our house and car. William seems to be fearless of the beasts and has done an excellent job protecting his mother. I would say that William has been the best at adjusting to our new home. While he is still an Oregon boy who overheats easily, he has embraced the ranch life. He still thinks that cows stink but really, can you blame him?

10. I would NEVER have imagined that I would live in Florida, let alone a cattle ranch. I really don't know which one of those things is more comical. But I do and we are experiencing all kinds of first.
First time ever seeing a massive cockroach (I'll never be the same).
First time in an air boat

First time eating biscuits and gravy and learning what "chicken fried steak" was.

First time opening the front door to a neighbor on a horse.

First time seeing wild hogs. These were caught by our neighbors and were parked in the driveway about 4 houses away from us.

First time running in the morning and fearing for my life because I thought I heard a wild hog.

First time seeing an armadillo

Florida is a strange new world for us (mostly me). Sometimes I feel out of place and like I don't fit in and other times I'm so excited my boys get to experience a taste of a ranch experience. I'm slowly figuring it out and buying humidity shield hair products by the gallon!