Thursday, 14 August 2014

18 Months in the USA - the bucket list revisited

Bloody hell guys. How fast has the last 18 months flown.
Every now and then we will look at each other and just be like "wow, we live in Texas" or, "man its weird that we are in America". Cos you know, it wasn't something we thought we would be doing, like, ever. So that is rad. Its a good lesson to not plan too much, and take each opportunity when it comes to you.

Anyhoo, as it is 18 months into our stay, it is time to update y'all on what we have done so far, and what we have ticked off our US bucket list. If you have been around here for awhile, you will have seen the updates at 6 months and a year. If you haven't, here is the tall and skinny of it...

Rob, basically, should have been born here in America, he was made to be American. He loves the food, the people, the sports, the politics, everything. And he knows sooo much about stuff  here. I know far less, but like most people my age, I was raised with a steady flow of Police Academy movies, Baby Sitters Club books, and of course, all those American sitcoms of the 90s. Hence, before we moved here, we had a massive list of things we wanted to see, do, taste and experience.

Here is a summary of the things we have managed to check off our USA bucket list. We have a few more months to get stuff done, and then the list will be put away till we move back here again.

Cities We Would like To Visit

Done and Dusted

New York - June 2013 and June 2014
Chicago - July 2013
Austin - March 2013, June 2013, October 2014
Hill Country - April 2013 and May 2014

Las Vegas - September 2013
New Orleans - February 2014
San Antonio - April 2014

Not Yet

Seattle - September 2014
San Francisco - September 2014
Portland - September 2014

San Diego
Georgia - Wanna see where my Pal Jeremy is from!

So, State list to date:
New Jersey
New York 

Food We Want To Try

Done and Dusted

Twinkie - yeah no I can't bring myself to do this. But Rob tried one. I think he liked it, he had three more right away, but hasn't touched them since. 
Deep Pan Pizza - had a Deep Dish in Chicago. OMG. Amazing.
Pasta in Little Italy - like, the best Pasta ever.
Hot Dog - I had a a "dog" at the Cubs game, they very proudly serve it with no Tomato Sauce, only mustard and pickle.

Sweet Iced Tea - this on second thought, does not appeal at all.
Lemonade - like, the kind on movies about the South. We have had it so many times, man it is so yum. Especially in the middle of a humid Houston summer! 
Po Boy - This is like a chip butty but with deep fried sea food. Its so good and so bad all at the same time. 
Budweiser - not very good, don't know what the fuss is about.
Chicken and waffles - Rob had this for breakfast one day, still a mystery to me.
Handmade flour tortilla - Oh man. These are good. So good. Sooooo good.
Queso - it took a year but we tried some Queso. And that shit was amazing. Even though all basic instincts were telling me not to, I ate a whole bowl of it. There, I admit it.
Apple Pie - Rob loves this. I am still not sold on sweet pies.
Pecan Pie - I LOVE PECAN PIE. The only exception to above statement.
Pumpkin Pie - we had a lot of pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. 
BBQ - we have had a lot of BBQ. It's amazing.
Shrimp and Grits - I LOVE SHRIMP AND GRITS. That is all.
Gumbo - Rob tried this and loved it.
Giant Soda - I got a two litre cup of Soda from Buckys. Yep. Two litres.
Turkey - Rob had a turkey leg at Eeyore's birthday, and we ate a shit load of Turkey at Thanksgiving!
Kolache - Tried these bad boys. Literally the most amazing thing ever.
Momofukus - Rob has always wanted to try this place. And we did. And we ate truck loads. Had amazing Ramen at the restaurant, and then Rob ate nearly all the cookies at the Milk bar. 
Giant Pretzel in NY - done! Although this was mainly to keep away morning sickness, it still counts!
Proper American Mac n Cheese - YES> YES> YES. A place here does it with hot sauce, grilled chicken, bacon and blue cheese. I am drooling thinking about it.
Shaved Ice - SUGAR RUSH!

Not Yet

Chicken Fried Steak - A Texan classic apparently, still haven't done it yet.
Chicken Fried Chicken -
Chowder - Haven't gotten to Boston yet. And I feel like you gotta do this in Boston, we shall see how we go.
Crawfish - haven't tried mudbugs yet. But we kind of have to.

Things We Want To See

Done and Dusted

Fire flies - OMG. These are the most beautiful little creatures ever. We saw them in PA this year. They look like little fairies having a fight with candles lol. Loved them.
Dave Chapelle - saw him, sung him Happy Birthday. Yayah. And just to brag, saw him again in NY in June this year. Cannot describe how amazing all this was.
Someone chewing Tobacco - Wow, I saw this for he first time in January. It actually happened. Haha I thought it only happened in baseball movies :P 
House of Pies - Went for midnight Pie after the supercross.. SO GOOD!
Grand Canyon - the number one thing I have seen or done here!
Hoover Dam - Flew over this on the chopper ride to the Grand Canyon Wrigley Field - saw Cubs v Cardinals.
Stumble down Bourbon St - Stumbled. Loved it.  
Famous People (Yes, I wanted to see some famous people, so sue me) - Rick Ross, Pauly Shore, Tommy Davidson, Dave Chapelle, FOTC, Phil from the Amazing Race, a real Housewife, Backstreet Boys.. oh and Mike Tyson. Sucre off of Prison Break.   
Central Park - got lost, saw turtles and HEAPS of squirrels. Brooklyn Bridge - walked across on the sunniest, most beautiful day.  Then we did it again on the next trip. Actually our favorite place in New York.
Beluga - Saw them in Chicago. And when I saw them I cried. I was so excited!  
Gators - Saw them in Louisiana. Crazy Shit.  
Squirrel - I have some squirrel pals who I see on the way to work.
Buckys - after Austin; on the way to New Braunfels.  
Times Square - it's so busy. And we loved all the billboards. Colorado River - Parked next to it in the chopper and had Champagne! Hippy Festival - yeah, so we totally did this when we went to Eeyores birthday with Jarrod and Rachael. It was so much fun. There was a lot of beer, hula hoops, and aging breasts.
Renaissance Fair - OMG we had the funnest day ever.
Cirque De Soleil -So good. Trippy as all hell 

Las Vegas Strip - Strolled from Excalibur down to Treasure Island. Funny people watching! 
Broadway Show - saw Book of Mormon last year. Saw All They Way this year. Both amazeballs.
Gulf of Mexico - Galveston, TX; Holly Beach, LA.
A jousting renaissance dinner - Did it. It was amazingly cheesey and awesome. Thanks Vegas lol.  
Great Lakes - Saw Lake Huron from Chicago
Bon Jovi - Saw him at Chicago Field in Chicago.
30 Rock - Twice! The second time we went to Top of The Rock and saw one of the coolest views ever. New York is an amazing city. It was tall and pretty cool. Unfortunately we didn't see Tina Fey at the same time.
 Ranch - We stayed at a beautiful ranch in March this year for our friends wedding. Awesome.
A Cactus in the desert - Done - Midland rig trip. Cactus everywhere.
Jersey Turnpike - We saw the sign. And drove past it. 
Rocky Mountains - I flew over some of the Rocky Mountains on the way to a field trip this year. AHMAZING.  
Mardi Gras - We came, we saw we conquered. Otherwise put, we went, we drank, we got beads, we ate a lot of good food, it was worth the 10 hour drive yo.  
NBA game - Rockets v Mavericks, Rockets v Clippers, Rockets v Thunder, Rockets v Heat (Just quietly, we saw Le Bron, Epic moment)
NFL game - We went to our first NFL game in November last year, and we are seeing Eagles v Texans in November this year
Roller Derby - This was so much fun. Those girls have balls. Big balls.
Ice Hockey - Even got to hug the mascot. We saw the Aeros before they left Houston. Was really fun to watch. Way more fun than on TV.
MLB game - Red Sox v Yankees, Red Sox v Astros, Cubs v Cardinals, Astros v Angels, Astros v White Sox and Astros v Red Sox again

Wrestlemania - why? because I love Rob, that's why. And it was hilarious. And we were on TV!
Tornado - given how dangerous these things are, it is a stupid thing to have on the list.. but, we actually saw a water spout in the Gulf of Mexico on Fourth July Weekend.
International House of Pancakes - done just recently. Was okay. Baby was craving pancakes :P 
Hike some of the Appalachians - while we didn't get to hike at all, we drove over some of them on our roadtrip to meet Laurie  

Not Yet

Music Festivals - Saw a great Festival in Houston earlier this year, and we are going to Austin City Limits in October
College Football game - Will see Wisconsin v LSU in August 
Multonomah Falls, Oregon - GOing in September
Crater Lake - THIS YEAR!! (I am a little excited lol)  
Mount Hood - Ditto. Mount Rainier - See above.
Mount St Helen's -See above above.
San Juan Islands - Clearly this last trip will be epic. 
Mexican Wrestling
Monster Jam or that kind of giant monster truck thing 
Niagara Falls  
Fenway Park  
Pink Flamingo  
Disneyland - I think this will wait till we have munchkins  
Narrows, TX 

Wear white linen pants in The Hamptons   
Margaret Cho
Lake Tahoe - I have been here, but I really wanna go with Rob. It may be one of the most beautiful places on earth. I think, anyway.
Yellow Stone Park
Rodeo and/or Stampede ( and yes, I know this doesn't count as it is in Canadia)

Things We Want To Do


Done and Dusted

Thanksgiving - We had such a great Thanksgiving with our Texan family!  
Fourth of July - see this post for details on our Independence Day. If you are familiar with the story you will know that I am still holding out for a good fourth of July.  
Trick or treat - This was so much fun! Buy Cowboy Boots   
Get stuck somewhere due to a snow storm - thank you random January snowstorms (actually ice rather than snow) in Houston. And thank you Midland for being so accommodating.  
Go to a Pumpkin Patch - We did this, had so much fun and did a corn maize! And it was like 99% humidity so we nearly melted haha
Grill - We have done some grilling with pals. The results so far have been encouraging.
Shoot a gun - There is no way in hell I am picking up a gun. Ever. But Rob went shooting with Jeremy in November last year.  
Snow Day - Yes, that joyous moment I have seen on the Simpsons so many times. Although there was no actual snow there was some sleet and ice, so that was fun!  
Mardi Gras - Oh yes we did.
Buy a box of Girl Scout cookies and eat the whole thing - Well I bought them, I didn't manage a whole box butmade a good effort haha Shop at Walmart - So, Rob refuses to do this. But I have!
Buy Cowboy Boots - Spent two hours choosing a pair with Liz in Austin, and I LOVE them!

Not Yet

Tubing - hopefully we do this later in the year, when we went it was the end of the season and there was waaaay too many people (ewww drunk people pee).. But I am hoping to do it still! 
Make a pumpkin pie
Tailgate - maybe this year.. need to find some lovely pals to tailgate with! (any offers people?)
Meet a Cowboy


  1. This is such an epic list and you guys are rocking it. Rocking. It.

  2. I love how much you've managed to see/do/taste - and what a fun list to make! I should make one for my new existence across the pond... in fact, my afternoon is going to consist of just that.

    Oh, and about the fireflies... I'm a PA girl, and since my hubby is from England, this past summer was his first chance at seeing them too. I had no idea that they don't exist over here! I'm going to miss that twinkle so much next summer!

    <3 dani

  3. oh my gosh what a list! and great documentation of what you've done! i will try to not take offense that florida was not on the list :) haha jk xo


Let's chat! I love getting comments and sending replies!