Wednesday, December 7, 2011

New & Old Friends

One pretty cool thing about Florida is we have a lot of visitors. I'm not talking friends and family so much (even though I wish that was the case), but rather the reptile and amphibian kind. We first moved here in the middle of hurricane season. When it would really start pouring down, I would peek out toward our screened porch, and without fail, our cute frog/toad. 

Pretty cute, right? He would sneak in through a tear we have in the screen and seemed to have a hard time finding his way back out. Since hurricane season is over (thank goodness) we haven't seen him or expected to  have him come visit us.

Just last week Aaron was being a good home teacher and helped cut down a cumbersome tree. In the process he came across a our new friend that we named Crosby. He loves him. The day he brought him home in a milk jug he wanted to build him a nice place to stay. He came home from Home Depot equipped to build him a comfortable living arrangement on our back porch.

Crosby the Cuban Knight Anole 
 (who unfortunately has anorexia)

As I went back to see how he liked his new home, I also noticed our old friend was back there.
Definitely an old friend now....:(

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


This may be a bit belated, but better late than never I suppose.

Aaron and I got together with our friends the Herrero's to carve pumpkins and listen to 80s music.

 Cora's pumpkin guts
 (Not the best group picture but this is the whole pumpkin-carving gang)

Saturday we dressed up in our Halloween costumes and went to a costume party thrown by the Rigby's. I've always enjoyed an excuse for dressing up. We thought this year, since we've been watching a lot of SNL (only having netflix will do that to you.), we'd dress up as someone from the show. One of our favorite skits on SNL is when Garth and Kat appear on Weekend Update. 
We did the best we could to dress and act like them.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Never{ever}ending Rain

This past weekend we had Aaron's friends Tyson and Parker stay with us. We were pretty excited to show them beautiful sunny Florida rained every single minute! We were crossing our fingers as we drove to Key Largo, about an hour away from Miami. Despite the overcast weather, the forecast showed that it would clear up by the time we got there.  Usually the weather is very pleasant but Saturday was rainy, cold, and overcast. Our plans to go snorkeling were shot down.

Tyson, Aaron & Parker
 After much deliberation we thought heading to the Everglades might be fun since we couldn't do much on the beach. We went to the Alligator Farm in Homestead.

We arrived right on time for alligator feeding. There were hundreds of alligators just sitting around like they were waiting to be fed. But here's a little fact, alligators can eat one meal that  lasts them an entire year since they don't have fast metabolisms. hmm..wish I were the same.

 He has a stub of a hand.

Next was the Airboat ride. We got our socks knocked off. It was so fun zipping through the everglades and skidding through some 360 degree turns. Our guide was pretty funny. He was the epitome of hillbilly/white trash and that's my kind of man!

 We were a little famished so before heading to the snake show, we got a something to hold us over - Gator Bites. Yup. Think chicken nuggets but replace the chicken with gator meat. Tastes like chicken though!

 To end our day, we ate at a famous fish place that overlooks the Miami River. The food was so good and the Cuban ambiance and outdoor seating was refreshing.

Yellowtail before
 and after!

I dared Aaron to finish the fish off by eating it's eyeball. I believe the pictures say it all...

Monday, September 26, 2011

Art District

This past weekend, Aaron and I went out to dinner with his fellow interns, Vanessa, Jessica and her husband Larry. They took us to a restaurant called Wynwood Kitchen. The food was really nice but the interesting thing about this restaurant is that it is surrounded, inside and out, with graffiti art. 

This is really just the beginning of all the graffiti. You know, I would be okay with graffiti if it all looked like this. It would really be something to see the artists working on one of the walls because it's so incredible what they are able to do. Artwork was great, food was good, but most off all, we had a great time with friends and looking forward to seeing more of Miami and everything it has to offer. 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Key Biscayne

I love the weekends because it's our time to be able to discover some cool places in Miami. We had heard that Key Biscayne, the closest Florida Key, was really pretty. Lucky for us, it was a pretty day and we were able to spend a lot of time there.

The crazy thing about this beach is that the water was super warm, like a warm bath. Also, we were able to walk out pretty from the shore because there were sand banks that were pretty high. Best of all, it wasn't even crowded!

Definitely a beach we will be visiting again.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Weekend Update

After being here for nearly 3 weeks, we finally made our way to the beach. We were invited to go to South Beach with some friends we met who are in another ward, but go to school at University of Miami. I had mentioned previously that our trip was short lived because of the jellyfish that surrounded us, but we also got rained out. We decided to go to lunch at a restaurant called Lime which was basically Tex Mex food. Even though the jellyfish got their way, it was fun to get together with some new friends...who speak English.
Izzy Gerber, me, Aaron, Britni Rigby, Brett Rigby, Zac Gerber, Amir

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Top 10 Things You Should Know About Miami

So in the span of two weeks (give or take) here are a few things I've learned about Miami:

1. Although we are still in America, people will speak to you in Spanish first. Even after replying to them in English, they will still continue in Spanish.

2. Customer service does not exist. Try getting the internet here - we still don't have it!

3. Everything is generally expensive here - groceries, gas, road tolls. We just may need to take out a loan for our everyday stuff :)

4. Hurricane season = down pour of rain everyday! Aaron got stuck in the middle of one just crossing the street to his office and I had to bring him another set of clothes to change into.

5. Our ward is half English and Spanish. We have wonderful interpreters we hear through a set of headphones for lessons and talks spoken is Spanish. During the Spanish hymns we do our very best. Who knows, we might pick up a good amount of Spanish while we're here!

6. The jellyfish are taking over the beach! We ventured out to South beach but quickly found out it was taken over by these jellyfish. Surprisingly nobody got stung despite several near misses.

7. Drivers are crazy. There is a whole new set of driving rules out here and I'm pretty sure they're illegal.

8. There are a lot of fun things to do out here, especially water-type things. Driving down to the Florida Keys, snorkeling ( which Aaron's convincing me to learn), crocodile hunting, cruises,etc.

9.  Miami is very culturally diverse. Many people in the area immigrated from Cuba and other Latin countries. We had our first taste of Cuban food on Sunday when were invited over to eat at the Herrero's, our bishop's parents. The food was yummy and the family was so kind to us.

10. Miami is no Utah. For real. Although I miss Utah for so many reasons, I know this year will be an adventure for us, to say the least. We hope to make the best of it and remind each other that it's just for a year.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Moving In

We arrived in Miami on a Saturday, looked at a few horrendous apartments Sunday and Monday and settled on an apartment we both agreed on. It's in a quiet part of Miami in an area called Dadeland. Despite some of the other apartments that were rank, dank and smelled highly of cigarette smoke, our place had good AC and was very clean. From Monday to Thursday (our official move-in day) we found and picked up all of our furniture from craigslist. It was quite the extravaganza! Aaron had to drive the Uhaul through the busy streets of Miami which was quite nerve-wracking. Here are the before and after shots from our naked to clothed apartment.

Before pictures:
 Living Room
 Dining Room
After Pictures:
 Dining Room
 Living Room