Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Month 3

3 whole months into life in the USA... It feels like forever but at the same time, I still feel so new!

The good
- So, I know it's just their job BUT I do love that the check out chick asks if you'd like help to the car every time I do the groceries. I am very much a I-can-do-it-myself person so I continue to politely decline but it's nice to know the offer is there the next time I don't want to put my back out lugging the fifty gallon bottle of milk from the trolley to the boot.

- Speaking of groceries... OH it is such bliss to not have to pack my own bags!!! 2 years of self packing in Europe however has made me think I am an expert (I'm not really) and I cringe every time my meat is packed with my milk. But still. At least I'm not having to do it myself.

- Plastic bags are finally no longer free! Yes, this is a good thing. I really got into using reusable grocery bags in Holland because I refused to pay 50 euro cents for every plastic bag. Until they put the new laws in place, I was being very lazy and not taking my bags to the supermarket but the lure of saving a few cents is just too much and I now lug my oversized Jan Linders bags in for every trip. Perhaps the Dutch did rub off on me after all?

- Organic seems to be the key word in this area. I don't know if it's a Californian thing, but it's awesome. Even the regular supermarkets have a great organic range but there are actually big, dedicated organic grocery stores! Eeeeeeeeee!!!!!!! Coming from Holland where there was a very limited choice of organic and Australia where (2.5 years ago anyway) organic meant a few limp looking vegetables hiding in the produce section of Coles, I'm in pesticide free heaven.

- Reeces peanut butter cups - not just a peanut butter cup! We've discovered easter eggs, cake mixes and even CEREAL! And yes, I tried it. Not for breakfast but for dessert. It was like Miel Pops but peanut butter & chocolate flavored. Except for the fact that it's kinda revolting when you think about it, I'd eat it every single day. Mmmmmm!

- We discovered the Cheesecake Factory last weekend. 3.30pm and the waitress assumed we were there for dinner. I thought this was odd until I noticed all the other people eating their savory courses. Strange if you ask me... But anyway we just had dessert and it was ENORMOUS! Oh. my. Anyone who knows me well knows my ability to down sweets (I don't just have a second stomach for dessert - I think I have about a dozen back ups in there somewhere) and I struggled after eating less then half. Add on my hot chocolate and Mitch's oversized milkshake and we were full before our cakes even came out. Thank goodness Americans also understand the concept of a doggie bag :-)

- People really are genuinely friendly. I feel so blessed - only 3 months in and I have met so many lovely, welcoming people who have helped to make this transition so much smoother. Thank you all ladies (and gents), you guys are awesome!

The bad
- I am yet to find a single tin that has a ring pull opening! Seriously. In the land of convenience, one has to resort to using a can opener. America, I am disappointed in you.

- Tablets are almost impossible to pop out of their packs. Considering I am usually pretty safety conscious, this probably shouldn't be in my bad category now that I have a little mover on my hands who can seem to get into anything and everything. However... Child proofing these packets also equates to Lu proofing. I either have to get Mitch to open them for me (with much difficulty - honestly, they are impossible to get into) or bring on attack of the scissors.

- I. have. an. american. accent..... Thankfully it's still limited to my head and I'm yet to inflict it on anyone except the ahluuminumm foil (ok, it's really hard to type a fake American accent. But you get what I mean). Mitch however - I feel like crying every time he says data... daytah instead of darta. Ugh.

- Spam text messages. Automated voice calls (ie from your health insurance asking you to take a survey). These drive me NUTS! No, I don't want to enter to win a gazillion free ipads at 3am in the morning. I thought junk email was bad enough but the amount of spam texts I get is worse. Especially because the payment system here is totally strange and you are charged for incoming and outgoing calls/messages. It's cheap as chips so doesn't really make a big difference but that's besides the point!

The hmmmmmm moments
- Entree = main course. Huh?!?!?! Took a few restaurant menus before I could get that into my head. It just makes no sense!!!!

- Responses to the name Oliver: Well that's unusual. That's lovely, very unique. What does that mean? Where did that come from? Took me awhile to figure out that people actually don't understand my bubba boy's name when I say it. Yes, an Aussie (slash British apparently) accent makes Oliver's name 'unique' rather then a name that has been in the top 10 for some time. At first I found it amusing/frustrating, now I'm trying to work up the courage to unleash my inner fake American accent so that his name sounds like Oliverrr instead of my Aussie Olivahh and I don't have to go through the whole rigmarole of explaining that it is in fact, quite a popular name and I wasn't trying to be out there by giving my kid this crazy Australian/Dutch Olivahhhhhhhhh.

- I no longer think the car dealer who thought I was Icelandic is strange or in need of a hearing test. I heard someone Finnish talking and I truly thought they were Australian. I know Iceland isn't Finland, but they are kinda close, right?

- Everybody come and play... Throw every last care away... Let's go to the mall, today! Theme song that pops into my head every time I take a visit to the 'mall'.... :-)


  1. I now also say dayta as opposed to darta now. Probably because I work for a US based company.

  2. Entree = main course? That's weird. Unleash your inner American while you're there and shove it back in when you come back to Aus... :-P Hope You, Mitch and Oliverrrrrrr are doing well.

  3. Lol, love the Robin Sparkles link :P

  4. Nooo Simon, not you too!!!!

    Tiff I promise not to inflict any fake annoying American accents on you... Not this trip anyway :P Give me another 6 months however :-)

    You're welcome Roy - but no singing it all day long and annoying Tiff ok. Mitch is still haunted by your Friday renditions :P

  5. Love it Lu! so glad the transition has been smooth for you! Lots of love, Martine

  6. Hey Lu,
    Glad you are settling in.
    What is a peanut butter cup? I have been wondering for some time. I saw your parents and Kim at the medieval festival on Sunday.

  7. Hey Selina! A peanut butter cup is a 'candy' made by Hershey's - it's a little paper cup filled with peanut butter covered in chocolate. Very, very, veryyyy addictive :-) Hope you are doing well, the medieval festival looked like fun!

  8. Thanks Lu,
    That sounds really really good.
    You will have to have some for me ;-)

  9. So what is an entree in australIa? A starter?

  10. Yup, an entree is a starter. I still find it weird that an entree is a main meal here!

  11. The moment I thought about what entree means in French, I realized it, but even though I know some French, it never occurred to me until now.


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