We Wish You A Reggae Christmas...

(name of a song we heard on the bus the other day... remix of "We Wish you a MERRY Christmas"... cleaver... and quite catchy I must admit:) I have video of the song, and Zach dancing to it, but can't post it for some reason... I'll have to figure that out)

So today is our last day in Greanda and I figured that I'd post to mark this occasion. Zach is writing his last exam as I write this and he had the biggest grin on his face as he headed out the door this afternoon. He was so happy to be almost done, I'm surprised that his face didn't crack from smiling so much! We can not believe that this is the last day here ever... well, at least for a long time. We need a serious break from this place before we think about visiting:) It has been such an awesome opportunity for us, but there has been a lot that was sacrificed for it. Not going to go off on our sob-story, don't worry, but there have been hard times. Missing family and friends back home, missing food... Starbucks, sushi, that sort of thing... missing the cold weather, dealing with the "third world" mentality here(and the third world amenities), the list goes on. But the amazing thing has really been meeting wonderful people that we know we will be friends with for the rest of our lives(aside from the whole being able to go to Med School here!!). Pretty much all the people that we have gotten close to are heading off the the same hospital as us in New Jersey and that will make that transition so much easier. Anyway, I didn't want to get sappy, but I guess I kinda did:)
Zach and I went out for our last breakfast date this morning before he headed off to his test. I guess from here on out we are into the "lasts". Last time going out for dinner to the Boulangerie, last time going to the beach, last time packing up(well here anyway), last time getting a taxi at 3:30 in the morning... Last everything. It is a weird feeling to say the least and I never thought that I'd say this, but it is a little hard and sad. I am going to miss things here and I'm sure I'll miss them more in a year or so, but the simple lifestyle that we lead here is going to be hard to replace.
Well, I'm going to stop rambling and put up some pictures that I took in the last few days...

Our last "Wild Wednesday". Yup, it gets wild with all that coffee drinking and chatting. We call it Wild to make us feel like we are doing something more exciting then we are:) Kristin, Myself, Lisa

Me enjoying my favorite thing right now... Breakfast!!

One of my last cappuccinos here...

Zach lookin' happy about his food:)

An even happier Zach. Pretty sure he was laughing at me cuz I almost slipped and fell in a huge pile of mud as I was trying to get his picture!


The last days....

I feel like we are going picture crazy now in a last-ditch effort to try and capture all we can of Grenada. We've taken so many shots over the past two years, but it never feels like enough once you're about to leave. We only have 5 days left here and we're trying to make them go buy as smoothly as possible and just enjoy them all that we can. We're trying to see/visit/spend time with as many people as we can in the amount of time we have left(well, mostly it's me doing the seeing. Zach is just seeing his books at the moment!). Zach is studying like crazy. He's only got four days of it left and he is on cloud nine thinking that he'll be done in a bit. It's not over forever, but knowing that he can have a break soon is giving him all the motivation he needs these past few days. It's the keeping the mind off going home thing that he's finding the toughest, but he can pretty much work through anything... and that's why he's in Med School and I'm not:)
Zach was able to feel the baby kick for the first time the other day and he was pretty pumped about that. Another way for him to feel connected to the baby, always a good thing! Baby is moving like crazy and keeping me up at night, but I guess that just goes with the territory of being pregnant. If only the backaches weren't....
Anyway, nothing else really new here so I guess I'll just quit writing before I start to babble.


A busy week...

So a lot happened this last week. It started with Zach's 25th birthday on the 24th and I somehow managed to convince him to take an entire day off school... don't know how I did that but I'm not going to question it. We had an awesome day planned, we called it our five-fold plan, which then developed into the five-phase plan... don't ask! First we went out for coffee, in the morning and then off for lunch to True Blue Bay Resort(they had burgers there and Zach was really wanting one.)... that was phases one and two. For phase three we went to the beach and the waves were so huge that Zach was able to bodysurf. He was pretty pumped about that, not too many 25th birthday's that involve bodysurfing in the Caribbean Sea:) We had a phase three and a half that was me cutting Zach's hair (don't know how that got on the phase list, but it did) and phase four was going for dinner to The Beach House, which is our favorite place to go here. Afterwards... a.k.a. phase five... we met up with friends at a local wine bar here which has a really great atmosphere. All in all, not a bad day(and it didn't cost too much, our dollar is doing really good right now...yay Canada!).

Then on tuesday we went for our first ultrasound. I was just over 19 weeks and we were really excited to see our baby for the first time. Well, we didn't take into consideration the fact that this was Grenada and that the machines were circa 1982. Not cool. We still got to see our baby, and don't get me wrong, it was amazing, but instead of the total hands and feet we saw a general outline. And in the picture that we got to take home(Zach swears that they don't even use the paper it was printed on in North America anymore), our baby looked like an alien, no joke. I love it, but it does look like he(we've come to calling it a he. And no, we did not find out what we are having) has two heads. And we are not having twins, that they told us... but who knows, the machine is old... I wanted to post it so everyone could have a laugh, but I don't have a scanner. All that aside, we were so pumped after the whole thing and it was so neat to see what we could and connect with the baby. I guess the whole experience is just par for the course here in Grenada, the beauty of being pregnant here and just one more story we'll be able to tell the baby when it's here:)

We had another first on wednesday of this week, an earthquake. It's origin was Martinique, quite a ways from here, but we really felt it. It was a 7.3, but due to the fact that it was so far underground it didn't do the damage that one closer it the surface would do. I think that it was something like 90 miles down underground, still rocked us though. So we felt what must have been an aftershock and it felt like we were standing on a waterbed. Our first concern was a tsunami, but it didn't happen and that we are grateful for. After going through a category one hurricane earlier this semester, we now feel we have filled our natural disaster quota for the next few years:)

On thursday(sorry that this seems to have become a day to day update) I was officially halfway in my pregnancy. A weird thought to say the least. I'm still growing rapidly and now I know I don't have the excuse of there being two babies in there to make me feel better about the pace at which I seem to be growing. Oh well, every women's different I guess.

On saturday I was a part of a garage sale held a friends house. We wanted to get rid of a bunch of stuff and try and make some money doing it, and it turned out quite good. We made off with some good cash and now our suitcases are going to be a lot lighter on the way home(actually it really means that we have less to just leave behind... who knew that you could accumulate that much stuff in two years?!?)! It was a long exhausting day, but a good one and a fun too. I'm not the haggling type so I'm pretty sure some people went away with fabulous deals, but that's alright with me. We're rid of a lot of our stuff and that's what matters.

I think that that about sums up the things that happened recently. We have only 11 days left here and we are trying to make the most of them. The next two weeks(or less than!!!) are going to be spent tying up loose ends and just trying to soak up as much of the island as possible. Hard to believe that it will all be over soon...

The view from our table at the True Blue Bay Restaurant... not too shabby:)

The beach and the bodysurfing waves.

Us at The Beach House...Zach lookin' hot at 25!!!!

The group we met for drinks... Me, Noah, Sean, Kristin, Lisa, Donny and Zach.

Me at 20 weeks.


It's been too long...

Time has flown since my last post. I missed a week of belly shots, I know, but I'm back with a new installment! I'm officially 19 weeks today and like I say everytime I put up a picture, I'm feeling big. I never thought that I would grow so rapidly, but I am and I'm still trying to come to grips with it. It is hard not to just feel fat all the time, it's a sad realization that I'm coming to. I thought that I'd feel beautiful and glow, but no... But maybe that is just Grenada. I mean, I do sweat ALL the time here, so my so called glow, could not be true. Here it really is sweat, there's no mistaking it. Maybe when I'm home for the second half of my pregnancy I'll feel more like myself. The cooler weather would help a lot, but I guess I just have to wait and see.
Speaking of, it is exactly three weeks today that we leave this Island. We'll be somewhere over the US right now...crazy thought. I can't believe that our time here is almost up, and I'm now starting to realize that I might start to miss this lifestyle/place/etc. a lot sooner then I had originally thought...maybe in about five to ten years instead of fifteen to twenty. I think that the haze will wear off sooner, get back to me in a year once I've left this place and I'll let you know how I feel then. The thoughts of being able to stay in North America for longer then a month or two is beyond what I can grasp at the moment. To say that I (and Zach) can't wait to get home right now is the understatement of the century! We are so ready for home, for Christmas, for cool weather...dare I even say freaking cold weather!! We just want to be there...period. And thinking about all that is to come in the next months after Christmas, it's overwhelming...not to mention the move to the US once the baby is born and Zach has written one of the biggest tests of his life. If we think about everything too much...well let's just say that one step at a time is the best method to go about things here!
My parents have come and gone and I think that the trip went well. They seemed to have enjoyed themselves despite the rainy days that happened while they were here. Still got in most of the beach days that they wanted, my dad even went in the ocean...for those of you who know him, that's just not like him. I'll post a few pictures of the trip the next time I post. I have to quit writing now, I'm about to fall asleep! More later...

Self taken shot...no head again!


17 weeks

I'm sitting here listening to the rain and feelin' pretty good! Did I mention that I love the rain?! Well I do. Anyway, this last week has been pretty crazy. We found out that my parents are coming to visit, on monday. So needless to say, the menno in me is trying to get a bunch of things done and cleaned before they arrive:) Can't help it, it's who I am. They're coming for a week to see the island before we leave it for good, and I'm assuming that my mom is dying to see me pregnant. I also think that I felt the baby kick for the first time this week. It was kinda a tap-tap feeling in the inside of my stomach and a few days later, more of a definite kicking sensation. Both were things that couldn't really be mistaken for gas, so that made me feel a little more confident in my "investigations", as the doctor here at the school clinic calls them. She's from India and is one of the funniest(not that she's trying to be) people that I have met here. She is quite quotable, and if you know me, that makes me pretty happy! Well on to the good stuff, the oh so loved belly shot! I feel like this week I actually felt my stomach growing. It's so weird to wake up and feel like you are visibly bigger than the day before. I feel like I'm bigger then most at this stage, but I guess that's how it goes sometimes.


Okay, so maybe it was me...

So I lied. Well, not really, I think that blogger and I were fighting for a little bit:) I got it working so here are the pictures. Here is my belly/gut/stomach...whatever you want to call it, at four months(16 weeks). The reason I say both is cuz when I read blogs in which the person is pregnant, I always wonder what their version of weeks to months is or vise versa. I'm going by what my baby book says, the Mayo Clinic Guide to Pregnancy. So if you think that I'm crazy or I said it wrong, take it up with one of the highest ranked hospitals in the US! Now that I got that off my chest... I'm feeling great, not nauseous at all and this morning I had my first cup of coffee!! Albeit a cup of instant(still can't handle the french press coffee that Zach drinks), but it is coffee, and I'm back with my old friend again! Starbucks here I come(in six weeks!!)! Oddly enough I've been able to drink cappuccinos, I think it's all the milk in them. Who knows, the pregnant body is a mystery! I'm starting to grow out of pants and I'm starting to do the elastic band thing to keep them working. I didn't bring any maternity clothes with me to Grenada(found out the morning before I left that I was pregnant) so I have to make do with strechy skirts and the elastic band:)
Anyway, enough about that. Zach is now coming into the last strech of school and his exams are coming fast and furious. He had one yesterday, which he said felt good, and he's got one on monday(one of the reasons that I really had to fight for some computer time!). Then he has exams every two weeks until we go home in december. He hasn't forgot about the St.Vincent blog he was supposed to write, but he just only now collected all his pictures and he's going to post something after his test on monday. So you can all just wait with baited breath for that one!
Yesterday, I went with Lisa and her two boys to the beach. We hadn't been in weeks and we decided that it was time. We didn't have swimsuits along, but we went for a walk and started to take a bunch of pictures. Her son Noah, found two starfish that kept washing up on shore so we decided to get a few shots of them. They turned out awesome so I figured that I'd post them seeing as to how I haven't posted pictures of Grenada in a while. It was a gorgeously cloudy day and as we were walking back to our car we just got hit by the rain, it was fabulous! Man have I ever changed when it comes to weather! Well, I hope you enjoy!

Is it just me, or does everyone feel lame when they take these pictures?! Oh and aren't the curtains in the back hilarious?? Got to love that Grenadian style:)

I was going to...

I was going to post a picture of my belly at four months, week 16, but Blogger-something-or-other is not letting me post any pictures for some reason. So I'll try again later today, that is if I can wrestle the computer away from Zach again:)


A new favorite...

The last few months here in Grenada have technically been the rainy season, but the lack of rain was making us think that we'd never get one. Well, these past few days have been extremely overcast and rainy, and at times, a little bit chilly...by chilly I mean that were not in a constant state of sweating! It hasn't exactly been sweater weather, but the chill just put me in the best mood:) All my life I've been a huge fan of summer and thought that I'd live somewhere like California so I chould have that all year round. But after living here for almost two years I realized that this is not an ideal weather situation! I love summer in summer, not in spring, fall or winter...gets old. So as I sit and listen to the rain outside I can't help but feel glee! I love these days, can't get enough of them. I wish it would rain here for the next month...and I used to HATE the rain. My how different life experiences can change your whole take on life. Grenada has been that for me, it's made me realize what I love and what I know I cannot live without, seasons!


Just add us to the growing list...

Well, I'm sure that most of you already know, but I figured that I'd make an official announcement on the blog. Zach and I are expecting our first baby in April! On the 18th of April to be exact(well, for the time being anyway...I hear that the date can change at anytime and it already has for us once:)). That makes me 3 1/2 months along, just over fourteen weeks. We are incredibly excited and, yes, it was planned. We are having it in Abbotsford and with the help of my sister in law, Linda(Ed's), we were able to get in with the midwives there. This is something that I know a lot of people have been having a tough time with and we are so thankful for! Anyway, I figured I'd finally share our news with the blog world and get it out there. I'm starting to get a bit of a belly and thought that I'd share a classic shot of it. No blog would be complete without:) Enjoy...

Sorry, it's a self taken shot, so my head didn't make it in!



Well, I'm back in Grenada now and I'm sure that you can all tell that my time in England was a blast from the lack of posting! No time to post when you're having fun:) Like I said, the trip was amazing and we did and saw so much. But within all the sight seeing, we relaxed a lot and that was great too. I loved being able to just...be! The weather was so beautiful, sunny and crisp most days and the rainy ones didn't bother me at all, I welcomed the cooler weather. Aside from being an Asher-hog and playing with Jacob, which were the highlights for me:), my time was filled with some great things. We went to a little lake nearby for a walk called Taklin Tarn, we went to Newcastle for an afternoon of shopping(!!!)...where we had Starbucks as well(!!!!), we went for a walk with Jo's parents in the Lake District(which is one of the most picturesque areas in the world), had coffee, went shopping, hit up the local McDonald's(that was for me:)) too often to count, and went on local walks along the river behind Jo and Astrid's house. There was much more stuff that we did, but it would take too much time to write it all down!
It was just great to be around family and Astrid and Jo were so hospitable(even when I got sick and in turn go Jo sick and his respiratory issues came back...again). I loved playing with the kids and just spending time with Astrid, which we don't get to do often. We both live away from home, so if we happen to both be in Canada at the same time, we don't end up spending that much time together because of other commitments. So times when it can be us, and just us, don't come often. Needless to say we got a lot of that this trip(hopefully not too much on Astrid's end:)) and it was awesome.
So now I'm back in Grenada and I'm so happy to be able to see Zach again! Two weeks is a long time not to see each other, but we've kind of gotten used to it since we have had to be apart for longer than that a few times since we've been married.
Zach's trip to St.Vincent went amazing. He was so happy being able to spend time in the hospital, putting into practice a bit of what they've been learning so far. The Doctors there were really great in that they let the students have more hands on work then usual and Zach got to watch a few surgeries, and even got to suture a machete wound on a man's arm! Needless to say, he was on cloud nine! He hasn't got his pictures from the trip downloaded yet, but when he does, I'll post them. He was also able to visit this Pathology museum...not quite sure what it was all about, but he could not stop talking about it for days afterwards...guess you have to be in the medical field to really appreciate that one:) I think it had something to do with this one Doctor that went to school in the UK and practiced all his life in St.Vincent and he kept meticulous notes on all his work and had this museum of, for examle, a jar full of something like 26 worms that he pulled out of some guys stomach...mmmmm! Stuff like that, oh and I'm pretty sure there were body parts there as well. That kinda fun thing...right up Zach's alley! Anyway, I'll get on with the pictures and I'll go more in detail about Zach's trip when there are pictures to post! Enjoy!!

Asher, he started making tons of weird noises while I was there...loved the ooooo sound!

Jo's parents and Astrid and Jo after our walk in the Lake District. We're at a cafe called Chesters...such a cute place!

The local pub, the Stag, in Jo and Astrid's village.

Me and Jacob

Jacob watching TV...can't tear his eyes away!

Jacob's pre-school...he loved it there. He's holding the door open for me, he does this often and it is so cute. He does it for complete strangers too!

Langley Castle, it's half way between Carlisle and Newcastle.

Me in front of Langley Castle

Just thought that this was a pretty shot!

In a town called Grasmere, in the Lake District. There was a little cottage where they made gingerbread and fudge...the ladies cracked me up!

At the Lakes where we stopped for a picnic that Jo's mom packed! There are sheep everywhere in that country...not helping the stereotype at all!

Jacob in the morning before he headed off for school...I love his glasses!!

A walk along the river behind Astrid's place.

More of the walk along the river

Talkin Tarn, the little lake near Jo and Astrid's.

Me and my beloved...back together again!

Asher and myself

Astrid at the coffee shop Costa, where we had coffee few times. They had some huge drinks, "I believe I ordered the LARGE cappuchino?!?"

Astrid, Jacob, Asher and Myself on a walk around Jo's parents place.

The Jansen's back porch...so beautiful. I love the red vines on the wall, they grow everywhere in England.

Asher in one of the cutest pictures ever!!


Ahhhhhh England!

Well I'm here and have been for almost a week. And wow, what an amazing country:) I can't get over how beautiful it is here. Every time I come, I'm amazed at it. The flight went really well, it was nice not to have to switch airports and planes about a hundred times! I'm running a bit short of time at the moment, but I wanted to let people know that I got here alright, not to mention alive:) I'll write more soon and post some pictures when I've bought a converter and have charged my camera battery.


Feeling the sand between his toes...

Earlier this week Zach was having a bit of a "been too long in Grenada" day. He was just feeling frustrated with dealing with the "easy going" locals. Life for them just runs at a very different pace, and it gets kinda old after a while. So he and I were talking about it in the afternoon and he decided that he needed to go for a run and try and clear his head. Well, he got outside to our porch to get his shoes(his brand new shoes he got in advance for his birthday, I might add) and they were not there. We looked everywhere in our apartment(which did not take long, it's small) and they were nowhere to be found. It dawned on us then that someone stole his shoes. Not good timing, let me tell you. Our porch is enclosed with bars and mesh and has a locked gate, that is ALWAYS locked(those of you who know Zach know that he would not have it any other way). Well, someone must have got a stick and fished them out through the bars on our front gate. Needless to say, Zach was NOT pleased. After that we decided to go for a walk to try and calm down(wearing our flip-flops. My shoes were still there, but I thought it best not to wear them...for obvious reasons). We brainstormed on the walk and decided to talk to his parents and see what we could come up with to get him new ones(he wasn't about to pay through the nose to buy ones here). Well, Zach's mom and her sister, Saralie who lives in California, got right on it. Within the next hour there were shoes being sent to Saralie's place in LA and then she was going to send them to our friends place in New York, Peter, so that he could bring them down when he came to visit his wife next. So until he gets his shoes in about a month, it's speed walks in flip flops with me and barefoot runs on the beach for him.


I'm off to the land of milk and honey...errrrrrr fish and chips!!

Zach and I found out that he'll be heading to another island for two weeks in the beginning of October for some in-hospital work. St. Vincent was the island that we were supposed to go to this term, but didn't end up going to due to many different(very scary) reasons. Students were given the option of heading there to do their hospital work for two weeks straight instead of doing them over the term here in Grenada. I'm pretty sure that they did this in a attempt to keep some of the jobs on that island and to not ruffle any feathers there. Well Zach and I decided that it would be beneficial for him to head out there, but not me. We also weren't comfortable with me staying home alone in Grenada, so off to England I go!! I'm pretty sure that I got the better end of the deal, but we won't tell Zach that:) I'm going to visit Astrid and Jo for two and a half weeks and I could not be more pumped about it. Cute kids, cool weather, long sleeves....ahhhh, that's the life! Now I just have to get through two weeks and two days of 40C weather.....


Felix is officially our first...

Well, Zach got his wish! We lived through our first category 1 hurricane. Hurricane Felix was just supposed to be a tropical storm, but it ended up gaining speed by the time it got to Grenada and just got worse. When Zach was going to bed at about 4am he noticed that the wind was getting a little crazy. At about 4:30am I woke up out of a dead sleep and was wondering what was going on. I turned to Zach and noticed that he was awake and asked him if he was sure that this was supposed to be just a storm and he reassured me it was. Well he was wrong. I could not believe how crazy those winds were, we found out today that they hit about 75miles and hour. Needless to say, I was freaked right out. Walking around today we noticed a lot of downed trees and debris. It was weird to think that we'd just lived through a hurricane, I think that we are still in shock... and Zach is happy beyond belief!!


Back in Greanda

Well I'm back in Grenada and it really hit me how behind I am in blogging. Man when I went back to Canada I thought that I would for sure keep it up, but boy was I wrong. Now I'm so behind it isn't even funny...how can I post on all the things that happened while we were "home"?! I'll give a list of all the major things that happened...
First Tom and Marcy got married on the 16th of June, we had a bunch of Starbucks, Jo and Astrid(my sister and brother in law) came to Canada as well with their son Jacob and new baby boy Asher, we had more Starbucks, Zach went golfing...A LOT, Ed and Linda(brother and sister in law) had a baby girl, Jamie, we had more Starbucks...at the first Starbucks ever at Pike Place Market in Seattle, and just a few days after we left Arv and Sophie(brother and sister in law) had a baby boy, Jackson!!! With Jackson being born, that brought the tally to 4 babies being born in the Kliewer family, in the last 9 months!! There was also more weddings, a garage sale that we held to get rid of a bunch of stuff, a vacation with my family, then one with friends and one with just Zach and I. Now if that wasn't an eventful summer, I don't know what was! There was a lot more in between it all, but it would take forever to write. Needless to say it was hectic.
Now we are back here and everything feels so slow and easygoing...typical Grenada:) It was great to see our friends out here again and spend some time with them. We haven't been to the beach though, not something that we are feeling that we must do everyday anymore(I know, you all think that we're weird). We had a hurricane warning...and that turned into a tropical storm warning...that turned into some rain and a lot of wind and lightning. Zach was disappointed, but that is just crazy Zach, me, I was happy that nothing bad happened.
Well, I'm going to cut it out with the writing and get to the good stuff...pictures! I'll try and get on track with the posting...

My very first Starbucks at home!!!

Marcy's staggette

Myself, Marcy and Tom at their wedding

The happy couple!(say it like you mean it Tom...HAAAAPPY couple!)

Jo and Astrid's second boy, Asher

Ryan, Dennis, James and Zach golfing in Whistler

Zach at our garage sale

Pike Place Starbucks...the mermaid is a little scandalous:)

Ed and Linda's third(and finally a girl!!), Jamie

Arv and Sophie's second, Jackson