Going back to real life

Today is the first day of the rest of our lives . No way! Too dramatic, today is the day we returned from a short break in Barcelona visiting family . We won’t go into details of how “long” and tiring was coming back and how short it feels going there, but we will just say that we woke up at 7am and we have not come home until 7pm :/

It’s been a long time since we have posted something on our “family treasure” and since our favorite fans have been begging us to start writing again, here we are!(Our fans or what is the same, yaya Rosa and vovo Genil) you know…mother love!

Rather than being on vacation we went basically to reunite with our loved ones, and it felt so good! You know you have not been away of your country long enough when you return and still feels like home. Barcelona is a beautiful city, and it may have been the sun that has been out every day or the food, friends, or because you know every street in your city and you feel you have a thousand places to go, but it was a very much needed visit.

I told Sam that I felt like I was “in love” again of the city, to which he replied “Oh thanks for that! that touches me!” But after their little jealous rage he made a remark I had not thought of til then… He said “you haven’t fallen in love with the city again, in fact, if your family was not there you wouldn’t miss it so much and always want to return” And it really is like that, Barcelona has everything and more, and would love to visit over and over again, but it wouldn’t break my heart to pieces if it were not for the people we leave behind. They are the ones that make every time we go become like a mountain we have to climb again. We see how much Julia enjoys being with both families, the love and affection she has for each of them, from the newest member with only four months of age to the oldest one (We will omit names here, just in case, haha) There is nothing that can compare to these family ties . And for that, and more, we give thanks to God, not for a few days enjoying the sun but for the family treasure that we have on more than one continent and that helps us move forward.

Here you have some pictures!
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And because we know that our “fans” will be the first to read this: we love you loads Yaya and Vovo! We hope you like this post. 😉

Love,
Sam , Eli and Julia

Pros and Cons of living abroad

Well, we finally got to our 6 months mark! Yep, we made it! We arrived to Manchester in June and we are still around here with no intentions, for the moment, to go back to Barcelona. We thought now it could be a good time to reflect upon the pros and cons of living abroad in this British adventure, maybe it will be useful for those ones thinking “I might give it a try and move to another country!” So here we go:

1st of Pros: economical improvement.
One of the main reasons to leave Barcelona was to look for better job opportunities, and well, we haven’t achieved all our financial goals yet but we can say there’s been a noticeable improvement since we moved to the UK. Samuel found a job on the third week we got here, and we can see God’s hand in that miracle, because we know of many other people that are still looking and have been here almost the same amount of time than us. He is learning new skills, building good relationships with his workmates and looking after our family’s needs and self-reliance. About myself, I changed my mind about the initial idea of me getting a full time job, I decided to start my own business as TuBa Advertising and I got to realise that I feel much more fulfilled being able to look after my little troublemaker than missing her stories, new words, amazing little adventures because of working for a company more than 40 hour per week. Of course I still want to get more experience and feel that I am a successful professional in my field but I can still do that being self employed, it might take me longer…but it is worth trying it.

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business owner
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1st of Cons: loneliness.
Oh yeah, it is good Samuel found a job! Of course, but that also means that we don’t have normal weekends anymore, just one day off, that we always wait for him until he gets back from work around midnight and if we get lucky and there’s a nice day out there we might go out and do something fun. So basically I don’t have much time left to talk to another adult, and plus, because of my “social skills” I don’t get to do friends as quickly as I would like to, and sometimes, even when I try really hard, I might not catch some of their sense of humour or bits of a conversation…so yes, we miss our families, we miss our friends, I miss not having to make an effort to feel that I fit in in whatever sort of activity we attend… But I guess this is something that we will be able to overcome as time goes by.
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living abroad

2nd of Pros: learning a new language
How good is that?! Isn’t it! So apart from Spanish and Portuguese now we get to become more fluent in English. But let us tell you that it is not an easy task, specially if we just speak more often one another than actually with the locals. That means you really have to try hard to take advantage of opportunities to talk to other people at church, at activities, wherever you are and not just to the bus driver asking for a “day rider”! We feel we have improved, Samuel specially is doing really good since we got here and Julia, she is soooo adorable saying some words in English, such as “bye bye, yeshh (yes), go! and many others.. 🙂
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2nd of Cons: the darkness
Don’t worry, it is not a spiritual darkness! But a physical one! Seriously! Here in Manchester gets dark at 4 in the afternoon! How strange is that? And can you believe that at midnight gets lighter than in the evening! Amazing! We even took pictures to prove it, to ourselves of course, I don’t think anyone else is too bothered about it, hehe…but anyway, I get a bit scared every time I have to go out at 6pm or later than that…cuz it truly gets really dark out there,..we’ve been told it’s because of the season… Oh well, we will just have to wait until summer!
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3rd of Pros: spiritual growth and uplifting experiences
The scriptures tell us that we need an opposition in all things, words of truth indeed. Since we got here we’ve seen how important we are to our Heavenly Father, how closer we can get to each other as we trust in His words and try to apply them in our lives. We have been trying to get more involved in missionary work as a family and we have had the opportunity to share the gospel with some spanish speaking friends, one of them is listening to the missionaries and is working hard to prepare himself for baptism. Our testimonies have been strengthened because of that and even tho we might not understand everything that is said at church when you become part of the Lord’s work you feel blessed.

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3rd of Cons: Public Transport
Ok, I really didn’t want to end this post with something negative…seriously, Manchester has many assets, that for sure, but public transport is not one of them! It is expensive, the journeys are too long and the fares are not unified, so if you buy a travel card with one Company you might not be able to use it with another. On Sundays it is not-existent! And they don’t keep it too clean…I feel bad saying this… But just consider these as suggestions from a regular user 😉

This is it by now! Who knows what our thoughts will be after our 1 year mark! Maybe we love the darkness, we own a car already and we have become the souls of every party-activity and have loads of friends! OR maybe we are back in Barcelona!!…only God knows.

A well-deserved break…

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Last week Sam was on holidays for a whole week. It was a really nice break because we got some time to enjoy each other’s company. We didn’t go abroad or do anything particularly special but just watch some films at home, go out with Julia, treat ourselves at Nando’s and we finally got the opportunity to go to the Preston temple together while a friend of us looked after Julia for a couple of hours. Julia was very excited to have her daddy around all the time, specially at night time. It was fun to see how she would copy him in everything he did and how as the days went by he became her new BFF. Now he is the only one who can help her get rid of the wee left in the potty…that’s an issue, because he is back to work now, but I guess we will be able to get through it soon. We also stopped breast feeding. It was hard in the beginning for Julia and I, not only physically but emotionally talking as well, but now she understands that breastfeed is for little babies and that she is a big girl now. Oh! She doesn’t let me touch her chest either, she says “mama no breast”…fair enough I guess! Haha. It was a hard decision to make but we knew it was the right time. Sometimes it is scary how fast time goes by and how big and independent your children become and there’s nothing you can do to stop it, you just have to help them achieve their full potential and in return they give you those precious moments that you will remember for the rest of your life.

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The 5 most useful websites before coming to the UK

So here we are again, and for this week… what about an “Informative post”? Let us share with you which have been, in our humble opinion, the five most useful websites for our preparation before coming to the UK.

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And the winners are:

1. Diario de un londinense  (for Spanish speaking people)

This is a blog that gives you all sorts of tips and information about your trip to the UK, but specially to London. It talks about from “How to get the NIN number” to where to look for cheap accommodation, or even money transfers. We really liked it because the author writes in a very friendly way and even comments from other people are usually very helpful. (not like the http://www.spaniards.es/foros … that’s like a bad morning in the traffic jam, almost everyone seem to be stressed and are not too polite with each other… :S…) anyway…

2. Easyroomate/ Rightmove

The first one helps you to find a flat to share with other people. It’s very good if you are coming on your own, because you can contact the person directly and negotiate all the details, for a family it gets a bit more complicated. So Rightmove is a better option to find a flat or a house. The only issue with this one is that you will have to deal with agencies instead of private landlords (most of the time)…but it is useful to get to know more about the areas and rental prices…

3. Universal Jobmatch

We were hesitating about this one, but…it is helpful in the sense that it gives you the opportunity to have an overlook of the job searching market in the UK, and since it’s managed by the British Government you have trustworthy information, as far as we know…¬¬’

4. Easyjet

Ok…this is not paid-advertising, but it is true that we are quite happy with easyjet. Even being a low cost airline it offers you a quality service and…hold on…final price in the ticket from the very beginning! Nothing about finding a very cheap flight for 30 pounds, getting all excited and after you fill out all the details realising that you have to pay almost a hundred pounds! No, thank you!

5. Gumtree

And for last but not least… the king of kings! the one-for-all classifieds site! Here you can find from a flat to even a second hand bike! It also has job offers and basically…everything that can be sold or advertised… So! that also means you have to be very careful as well, in order to get reliable information. We actually got to rent the place where we at now through this website! 🙂

We hope you can find them useful! and if you know any more please share them with us! cuz we’re still actually quite new in the city! 🙂

Moving to Manchester

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Ok! So now that you know a bit more About us let’s explain WHY Manchester! When you tell people you are moving to England most of them will say “oh! to London?!, that’s a very nice city” as if it was the only one of this country… ¬¬’ But the truth is that we actually thought about moving there in the first place, we didn’t get the right feeling to do so though, so…we kept looking. And one day, when it seemed that our plans were getting frustrated, the idea of “why not Manchester?” came across! Oh DSC_0034Thank you so much Wikipedia for all the information you gave us!haha Of course we didn’t base our decision in just that. We carefully thought about it, we took into consideration all the posibilities, the challenges as well as the opportunities that would be ahead of us, and here we are! After many months of preparation, never enough to feel completely ready though, we arrived to Manchester in June and we can say now, that we are in the right place at the right time. We miss our families and can’t wait to see them again but we know that whatever comes out of this stage in our lives everything will be for the best.