Top 10 -- Things I miss about "home"

It's hard to keep this list to just ten items, so you will see several items grouped together.  I guess when you grow up in one state, live there almost your entire life (except for a two year move to New Jersey), you get used to things.  And you miss them.  New Jersey was definitely a big move, but only two of the items on this list (#1 & #10) would have applied. 

This weekend someone from Europe asked me if I like it better here or in Minnesota.  I had to say Minnesota.   I see many benefits to a European lifestyle--a bit slower and more relaxed, less consumerism, and more time for family, among other things.  But like I told him,  "Minnesota (and the U.S. in general) is "comfort"."

"Where we love is home, home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts." 
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

10.   Caribou Coffee.  Missed it when we were in New Jersey too.  I am just not a Starbucks girl.  Although, if I  were, a short one hour drive or so would have me in a city with a Starbucks. 

9.     Oh, so many foods. From items that make it easier to cook (pre-cooked chicken strips, chicken broth in a can, Campbell's soup, hashbrowns) to goodies like Cheese-its and Reese's Peanut Butter cups (although I just learned there is a store here that sells them--uh, oh) to true Midwestern foods like Chedderwurst.  (Chedderwurst just got added to the list.  J#1 asked me if I missed it.  My response?  "Well, I didn't...but now that you mention it...")

8.    Girls Scout Cookies.  I know, they are a food as well.  But important enough to deserve their own line. Although, not having easy access to Samoas and Thin Mints was probably a good thing.  

7.     Going out to eat.   This is one of those things that is probably a benefit (i.e. not going out to eat), but I would just love to not have to cook about 95% of the time.  But, alas, it is pretty expensive and you don't see many kids at restaurants...so it is home cooking for us!  

6.    Cheap clothes.   Thanks to not having a car and less access to some of my favorite foods (see #10, 9, 8, 7 & 2), I have been losing weight.  Enough that I need to buy new clothes.  But, hard to find inexpensive clothes (since I hope to not be wearing them very long--just passing through some sizes on the way to my goal)  I can't wait to be able to walk into an Old Navy, outlet mall, or...

5.   Target.  Oh, how I miss my favorite store.  Did you know that I subscribe to the Target videos on Youtube?  Sad, I know.  And shopping online is just not the same.  It is MUCH harder to impulse buy when you know you will need to ship it across an ocean. Guess where I will likely be spending half my days on our trip back to the States this summer?  Ha.  Don't fret, we ARE bringing an extra suitcase with us. 

4.    Knowing the language. At this point, I have the basics down for grocery shopping and being polite.  Plus, I am lucky that we are in a country where just about everyone knows English as a second language.  But, sometimes I'd like to know what the older folks who talk to J#3 (which happens a lot) are saying, and not feel like I am putting people out by asking them to speak something other than their native language.  Although, there was a day last week when I think some mean old guy was annoyed with us at the grocery store.  That was a good time to NOT know the language.  

3.    Having a car.  I mentioned this was going to be on both lists.  And here it is.  So many benefits to not having a car.  But would love it if J#1 wouldn't have to leave work to take us to doctor appointments, we could check out different parks and stores outside of town and have an easier time seeing our friends who don't live nearby (hmm, that is all of them!).  

2.    Pizza.  American Pizza.  That is probably an oxymoron, since really isn't pizza considered Italian? And we are a lot closer to Italy now. But give me a good Carbone's Pizza any day.  Or Broadway Pizza--I would be fine with that.  Or even Domino's...   (Please note, there are Domino's pizza here, but it just isn't the same.  Evidently, they haven't gotten the memo that Domino's just improved their recipe about a year ago.)

1.      Family and Friends.   This really goes without saying and could have been #s 1 through 10.  From the kids seeing their grandparents, aunt, uncle and cousins to girl's nights out to having babysitters nearby to trips up to the lake with good friends to family barbecues to grabbing lunch with girlfriends and so much more.  All I can say is:  Thank God for Skype and Vonage.  

So, tell me--if you are an expat, what do you miss most about "home"?  And, if you are still at "home", what do you think you would miss most? 

p.s.  I think I will probably do a whole other post on working.  Do I miss it?   Yes (especially the people).  And no.  More to come... 

1 comment:

GlitterFactory said...

i think the hardest thing would be the time difference. i would want to talk to my loved ones back home, but schedules would make it so hard to catch up! so that's what i would miss most, i think: regular phone catchups! of course there are other ways to stay in contact (like this blog, of course), but it's not the same as a good gab-fest on the phone.

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