Midterm election night

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Today is finally the day for Midterm Election. It’s been interesting to follow all of the different campaign ads, news reports and debates on TV. Even if we’re not allowed to vote and we don’t have the history of living here, I feel like it’s such an important election, because politics in the states usually affects the whole world.

Two things things I’ve reflected about…

First of all it’s crazy how low the voter turnout is, if you look at earlier years. Last Midterm Election there were about 40 % voter turnout. The numbers are higher for presidential election, about 60 %, but that is still low compared to Sweden. Our last election in September, this year, we had a voter turnout at 87 %. So not only have there been a lot of campaign ads for the candidates there has also been a lot of ads for voter turnout.

Second of all – why does so many of the campaign ads feel like they are produced in the 90’s? Either you choose to bash the other party, or you talk about all the good things you are gonna accomplish and you let other people confirm that you’re a great guy. And every message you send out to the world ends with; “I’m xxx xxx – and I approve this message.” Who talks like that?

This sight has summarized some of the worst campaign ads for the midterm 2018 and it’s really funny (in a laugh at, not with the person, kinda way) – click here.

How about Ohio then?

Ohio is the seventh most populated state in America and is a major influence in politics. It’s a swing state. A swing state refers to any state that could reasonably be won by either Republicans or Democrats. The opposite would be a safe state.

At the moment Republicans outnumber Democrats in Ohio Government. But most of the Mayors of the ten largest cities (Columbus included) are Democrats.

American politics is still a bit confusing to me… but in addition to voting on state, county and municipal seats today, voters will be deciding who will be on the November ballot for 16 U.S. House seats and one of the state’s two U.S. Senate seats. So a lot of things to take a stand on before going to the ballots today.

It will be an interesting night and I will try to stay up as late as possible and watch as the results are being presented.

Let’s go COLUMBUS!

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When you have a husband working as a Soccer Coach you should probably know a thing or two about how things work within this sport. So from time to time I try to learn, except when it comes to offside – it’s an impossible thing to learn!

One of those question marks I had was – why doesn’t the winner of this years soccer league win?

So Andreas tried to teach me how MLS differs from the soccer leagues in Europe. Hopefully I remember it correctly, because I’m gonna try to retell it… 🙂

In European soccer leagues the winner is the one team who wins the whole thing. But in MLS they have a Playoff after the leagues/conferences are done. And the winner of the Playoffs gets the gold medal and becomes State champions.

This is the standings after the Eastern (left) and Western (right) conferences 2018:

Columbus Crew belongs to the Eastern conference and placed 5th this year. This means that they are above the bar and gets to play for a spot in the Playoffs.

Only 8 teams play in the Playoffs. The top two teams of each conference gets qualified without playing for a spot. The other 8 teams are playing against each other in a pre-playoff.

Last night Columbus Crew played against Washington DC. And because DC had a higher standing then Columbus the game was in Washington DC. It was a thrilling game which settled after penalties and COLUMBUS WON!!

One step closer. Next game will be on Sunday when we meet New York Red Bulls. It’s a home game so we will definitly go and cheer on the black and gold team!

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100 posts later

This is my one-hundredth post!!

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I started blogging in January this year and I really love to have this outlet for my thoughts and observations but mostly for the million photos I take 🙂 It’s fun to be able to share what we do with friends and family back home. But it’s also fun to see the insights and realize that (without marketing) I’ve gotten 2 new visitors to the blog every day and that I’ve had people reading my blog in countries like Mexico, Hongkong, Australia… people from all over the world! Maybe that’s normal or maybe it’s low numbers… I don’t know, I think it’s amazing that people find it and wants to read it!!

Cheers or SKÅL, as we say in Sweden – to 100 more!

 

Happy Halloween

Yesterday we celebrated our first American Halloween. We were invited to some friends who live in the suburbs of Columbus, in a kids friendly neighborhood. So we were guaranteed some guests who would come by for Trick or Treat.

The kids were so cute in their outfits (I wish I had photos, but I forgot). A lot of superheroes, princesses, clowns and animals came by the house for some candy.

Because this tradition isn’t that established yet in Sweden I learned some things, like…

  • There is a time slot for Trick or Treat, 6 – 8 PM
  • You should only have wrapped candy at your house (to avoid germs) – which makes sense…
  • If you are trick or treating – only take one candy (many kids don’t haha)
  • If you don’t want kids to stop by your house and ask for candy – don’t decorated your house
  • Depending on the weather and where you live in the States some people trick or treat with a car driving them from house to house. This happened last night! It was kinda funny to see how a car stops outside the house and 5 kids jump out of it. Like a hit an run, they came for the candy. 😛
  • Our friends also told us that some kids ditches their own neighborhood for the rich ones. Because the candy is usually better there. HAHA gotta love the strategic thinking at an early age.

It was warm-ish but raining last night so we sat in the garage and had a bonfire at the driveway – super cozy!

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The best kind of meditation

One of the great things about having visitors is that you get an excuse to do more excursions. After our weekend in Chicago we drove back to Columbus to spend the week here. And since my parents already had been here once, we had planned two excursions outside the city to get to experience something new together.

I really wanted to go back to the State Park, Hocking Hills, for another hike so that’s what we did last Wednesday. We combined three different trails starting off with Grandma Gatewood (Buckeye) Trail, continuing on to the Ceder Falls Trail to end with the Gorge Overlook Trail. A four hour trail with beautiful scenic views. Could this be the best kind of meditation?

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Another 20 000 steps-day in Chicago

I love the statistics that the health app (if you have Iphone) gives you. During our weekend in Chicago we walked more then 20 000 steps per day thats about 10 (american) miles per day! I think that’s the best way to explore a city, and because it was my parents first visit it was a great way to see as much as possible of the downtown area.

After a very cold Saturday (with some hail!) we woke up to a sunny and slightly warmer Sunday. We spent the morning walking all the way up to North Avenue Beach and then back to Navy Pier, closer to downtown and Chicago River.

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I had gotten some recommendations about doing an architecture tour, so being at the Navy Pier where some of the River tours started we booked one. And it was well worth the money. I honestly didn’t know that the city burned down in 1871 and after that became a Mecca for the worlds leading architectures. Seeing the different skyscrapers and listening to the history definitely was a cool thing to do from the river, where you get a great view. And I’m even more in aww about the citys’ architecture now then before (if that’s possible?! :P) These are some of my favorites….

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These two buildings (above) have a nickname – the peeled corn buildings! They have professional valets for the car parking.

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I don’t remember the name of this skyscraper above, but to be able to have this kind of narrow design at the bottom floors,  the architecture installed huge water tanks to help it stabilize when it gets to windy. SCARY!

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The beauty in simple things… This box design on skyscrapers got very popular because the architecture behind it started teaching so he had a good forum to share his ideas on design and function and a lot of students who listened and took after him.

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Our weekend in this beautiful city ended with a stop at a cosy Italian restaurant called Monteverde. I have only found one Italian restaurant that I really feel is genuinely Italian in Columbus, and I love Italian food, so I was looking forward to this meal! And it was no disappointment. Another great restaurant with good atmosphere.

Thank you Chicago for another great visit!

 

A return to Windy City

First of all… Do I need to change the name of the blog?! This will once again be a post about Chicago 🙂 ….but I guess one of the things about being curious in Columbus includes exploring places you can travel to close from here, or at least if I set the rules… So here we go!


Last week my parents came to visit me again. I’ve never been away from my parents for that long before (6 months!) so it was so nice to see them again 🙂 And because I’m such a huge fan of Chicago I suggested that we should start with a weekend in Chicago. So last Friday we met up to start off an eventful weekend in the Windy City.

We stayed at Freehand hotel located downtown. A very hipster approved hotel. Small rooms with bunkbeds, a cool bar with incense and a lot of people dressed in small hats and cool glasses.

Our Friday night wasn’t that eventful we had a late night dinner at Shake Shack (they make the best burgers, and they will open in Columbus in 2019 – I’m so happy!!) then a drink at our hotel bar and after that we fell asleep. Our Saturday on the other hand was the opposite. After an Italian breakfast at Eataly, we walked to Millennium Park to watch the famous sculpture Cloud Gate or as it’s also called “The Bean”. The rest of the morning we spent in the Art Museum watching endless of great artwork.

In the afternoon we’d booked a guided tour about crime and gangsters. I’d found this tour on Facebook. Such a good and simple idea, the founders of Free Chicago Walking Tours thought that guided tours should be available to everyone despite how much money you had. So the guides only gets paid by the tip you give them (if you have money) or if you rather give them a nice review on social media.

The tour was great despite the cold and windy weather. But our guide was great and the stories told was so intriguing. So much history and it’s not even that long ago these things happened!

After walking over 20 000 steps we ended the day with a nice dinner by the Chicago river at River Roast. Great atmosphere and food only weird thing about the service in this country is how fast they are with things sometimes. We barely had the chance to try our pre drinks before our entrées showed up. So a small minus to the restaurant but otherwise great food.

I think I will continue our weekend in another post so it won’t be to long 🙂

Dinner in Italian Village

We have been recommended to go to Hoof Hearted Brewery & Kitchen for a while now and this week we finally did.

The restaurant had that nice hipster interior and of course the brewery was a part of the design. They have an outdoor pool that you can use during the summer months, which looked really nice. Another great thing about this place was their running club. Every Wednesday you can join the club for a 5k run and get rewarded with half off on drafts, all night long. As they put it – #getlitgetfit 🙂

This time we only stayed for a meal and a drink, and it was yummy!

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Visit from the in-laws

We had another visit! Last Wednesday we picked up Andreas parents at the airport. Something we had looked forward to for a long time. Not seeing each other for 8 months is a long time!

They stayed with us for 5 days and we had a great time together. The summer heat is still holding it’s grip over town so, as always, perfect time to just hangout by the pool and make smaller excursions. I feel like we had the “this could be the last weekend by the pool”-thought forever. But it’s still 30-ish (80) degrees outside so you don’t really want to do that much more.

Btw! I finally learned a simple way to convert Fahrenheit to Celsius, or at least it gives an approximate result. It’s so frustrating with all these different measurements. Kilometers vs. Miles, Deciliter vs Cups, Feet vs Meter, … And why didn’t I know this before moving here, but they count Sunday as the first day of the week. Why are they doing it so complicated?! So if you don’t know this simple trick to calculate celsius, here you go: For example 80 degrees Fahrenheit to Celsius would be; 1. Start by taking off 25 (80 – 25) = 55; 2. Then divide by 2 (55/2) = 27,5; 3. TADA! 27,5 is not the correct answer, it’s 26,7 but still it’s close enough.

Okay back to the in-laws…

We took them to some of our favorite restaurants, we went to Easton shopping center and they got to see Andreas team play against Toronto.

They left Monday morning and it’s always a bit sad when our guests leave. The apartment feel a bit lonely for a while. But it’s only a month, then my parents will be here to visit us again. 🙂

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Fun note! I wanted to check if my heading was spelled correctly so I Googled it and got 377 000 hits on how to survive a visit from your in-laws. HAHA seems like a popular subject…