How You Know You Are From Iowa (Summer Version)

Everybody from out of state has their opinion about what makes somebody from Iowa ‘Somebody from Iowa’. From their favorite gas station pizza to the way they say sloppy joe/tavern/manwhich, us Iowans have a few characteristics that make us stick out from the rest. We notice it in other people and also in ourselves. I have complied a summer list that just screams I AM AN IOWAN AND I AM PROUD!

The week that Ragbrai takes place the weather will be hotter than satins home

You do not expect to get somewhere as quick as usual because road construction is happening…EVERYWHERE!

The kitchen trash can is missing- no fear, that just means somebody is shucking sweet corn, it IS that time of year.

Your favorite pizza is from Casey’s and others judge you because it is gas station pizza. Until you try it….DO NOT KNOCK IT!

Cyclone or Hawkeye fan. Pick.

You are traveling down the highway and see a sign that say how many miles until your destination which turns into the minuets it will take to get there.

The weather is actually an interesting topic of conversation and not just a time killer.

When you see orange hats in a field you say a silent prayer for each hat because you know the pain of detasseling (de-TASS-Lin).

You have heated arguments about what a saucy meat sandwich is ACTUALLY named: tavern, manwhich, or sloppy joe.

Most do not eat the week before the IOWA STATE FAIR! because you know that you will be gaining at least 5 lbs. walking through the gates and another 10 lbs. smelling all the different fried foods.

If you can relate, you are a true Iowan. The few and the proud!


Top 5 Things I Love About Canada

Last summer I packed my bags and traveled up to Toronto Canada for an internship. I had never lived outside of the Midwest so I was a little nervous not knowing what to expect when it came to life in a country that only bleeds red and white. I will have to say that I was more than pleasantly surprised. From the kindness of the people to the amazing heart stopper Poutine it was a summer I will never forget. Now that I have had a year to reminisce and look back at my experience- I thought I would share with you the Top 5 Thing I Love About Canada!

1. Poutine: my new and favorite food. For those of you who are unaware of what poutine is let me paint a picture. Imagine a fresh stack of perfectly salted fries topped with cheese curds and brown gravy. Stomach growling yet? Join the club. Also, almost all restaurants offer a side of gravy with your fries if you are not up to the challenge of eating a stack of poutine.

2. People: The people I encountered in Toronto were so friendly. From the people I worked with to the workers at the local grocery store. People had a smile on their face and positive attitudes towards life. The biggest thing that surprised me was that if YOU were run into somebody they say ‘I am sorry!’ before you get the opportunity to say anything, which in return makes you feel that much worse about running into them. Conclusion- people rock in Canada!

3. Tim Hortons: take Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks breed them into a super coffee creation and you have Tim Hortons. The most amazing coffee/iced coffee drinks imaginable with a side of sweet donut goodness. I was just at one recently and had a Birthday Cake donut that is out of this world, make you cry kind of good! But if they don’t have these go for the maple glazed donut or some Timbits (donut holes).

4. Culture: In Toronto you are so lucky to meet different people and learn about different cultures. There are many festivals that happen in Toronto which give you the opportunity to meet different people, try different food, and go outside your comfort zone. There are also parts of the city that a different from each other from the Kensington Market to China Town. There are many places to go and people to meet while in Toronto.

5. St. Lawrence: This market is something out of a movie. The first time that you walk in you see all of the different shops, people buying fresh produce, and a land of shopping opportunity. There are two levels which consist of bakery items, produce, meats, cheeses, wines, jewelry, flowers…basically anything you need in life. The best place to eat there would be Buster’s Sea Cove which fed me some of the best sea food I have ever had! From their fish sandwich to seasoned shrimp they can do no wrong.

BONUS: My New Job- This is the big announcement. I will be moving to Toronto in August to start my first “Post College, Big Girl Job”. I am so excited and nervous all at once but I know there is no other big city I would rather be than Toronto. I had such a great experience last summer and I know that it will only get better the more time I spend there.

Those are my top five reasons I love Canada…I hope that you visit Toronto to experience the culture, food, people, and come see me while you are at it!

Perfect Sunset in Toronto

Perfect Sunset in Toronto