international living magazine interview

Hey there!  Happy Monday.

We had another productive weekend.  We’ve got a roofer lined up to hopefully move us past the “tarp” phase of things soon.  And our new windows were installed!!  The most exciting part about that is that we’re using our central air now.

That’s right, we’ve gone all summer without it.  :)

But the other exciting part of that is that once we get them trimmed out on the outside we can start hanging the new siding on the front of the house and then start painting!!! Ahhhhh.  I’m giddy happy about the dramatic change a fresh paint color is going to have on this old gal.

key west house exterior old roof

Buuuuut, since that is all still just in the works I thought I’d let you know that I was recently interviewed by International Living magazine about … I’ll give you one guess …

… you guessed it, our international living experience. :)

We talked about all different kinds of things, but the purpose of the interview was to discuss income opportunities abroad and how I started my blog and where it has grown from there.

And I realized during that interview that we were talking about thoughts and ideas that I’d never really shared with you before, and after all of the great responses here I thought it made sense to bring you all in the loop.  I was beginning to feel like I was keeping secrets from you.

And I don’t like secrets. :)

It was actually at the end of 2008 that Joel and I knew we were going to be moving to Curacao after living in a small town on the eastern shore of Maryland for 5 years (our longest time anywhere).

That info is even news to all of our friends and family who we didn’t tell until a few months before the move. We just didn’t want to put it out into the world until it was closer to actually happening. That doesn’t mean we don’t love you all. :)

But it did give us a full year to prepare for how we anticipated our lives would change while living abroad. We ended up being wrong on so many things.  Like we thought for sure we would eat fresh fish for dinner every night.  Wrong.  Curacao isn’t known for its fishing. Who knew?!?!

But we did make one smart move ahead of time …

joel and karah wedding picture

… we got married.

The actual legalities of marriage in our case happened for all of the practical reasons. It just seemed safer and smarter and oh so grown up of us to get all of our legal documents in order before heading off to some foreign land where who knows what was going to happen.

The actual real life that is the two of us journeying together and making the most of our every space happens for all of the lovey dovey reasons.  And because he’s awesome most of the time.

(Picture taken on our trip to the Dominican Republic, you can see more here.)

But having that year to anticipate the changes also gave me a lot of time think about how I thought I would fill my time on a Caribbean island.  I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to be working in a traditional sense as work visas are expensive and at this point I wasn’t following any sort of career so the idea of working long hours for minimum wage wasn’t appealing.  And we were fortunate that wasn’t necessary.

So even though there were so many unknowns to me, and I really, truly had no idea what I was getting myself into I promised myself long before we ever left the US that I would make the most of our time on Curacao.

curacao

I had friends tell me that I was going to be soooo bored.  And that made me nervous.  Until Joel reminded me that “only boring people are bored”.  :)

curacao

And it was then that I first used the term ‘the space between’.  Everything about this move was completely temporary.  We briefly considered buying a house on the island but quickly decided renting was more practical and instantly everything about this phase of our lives just seemed like the space between.

curacao

Between a place we had really found felt like home with great friends, where we had created a life for ourselves complete with 3 home renovations and BFFs.

And our future.

We rented a house we didn’t love and I would have never thought she would become the first backdrop for this blog’s projects.

She’s not exactly a beauty queen and I wasn’t about to invest money in improving someone else’s house.  So I did what I could to improve in and around her.

how to make a pallet bed

Thank goodness for the rooftop and the view, by far her two best qualities.  :)

It actually took me 2 years almost to the day that I moved to Curacao to start to document our endeavors in the space between on this blog.

And what an amazing experience it has been.

You can read all about how we decided to rent that house we didn’t love here.

And you can get a closer look at our house and the projects we completed in Curacao here and here.  A few of the most popular are that rooftop bedroom with a super easy pallet bed pictured above, a coffee table I made out of an old door and canvas silhouettes of the girls.

At some point down the line I’ll get into how it actually all happened that I started the blog (without even telling Joel, hahaha) but I think this is enough of my mumble jumble for now.

But another beautiful Caribbean sea picture never hurt anyone.  ;)
Today I’m preparing for my dad and his girlfriend’s arrival tomorrow.  We’re super excited for our first family visitors since we’ve been back in the US.

And they are definitely project people so I’m hoping to Instagram and Facebook a lot of real-time updates along the way.  Hopefully you’re following along there to see all the mayhem, and I’ll be popping in here as time allows.

I do fully blame my dad for all of my DIY tendencies so you know I’m going to be doing my best to keep him busy while he’s here.  :)

Hope you all have a wonderful week!!

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About Karah

I'm Karah and I'm so glad you're here! I'm a small town girl from the North East who finds myself moving around with my husband and pups every few years and constantly on a journey to make the most of every space we find ourselves in. That little space between what has been and what will be. It'd be so cool if you'd like to join us for the ride.
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9 Responses to international living magazine interview

  1. Hi Karah – Still reading you every time you post and I’m loving following the transformation of the house. I still have to say though – I LOVE the pink/salmon color! I know, you and Joel are adamant about painting it grey – yuk! I just remember loving all the sherbet colored houses down there. At least go mint green or baby blue!!!!?????

    Don’t even bother heading over to my blog. Blogging has all but disappeared for me. Just no motivation…

    Keep on keeping on!

    • Karah says:

      So glad you’re still here, Jaye! Joel and I had a good chuckle about you liking our house color! I wish I could bottle it up for you. The exterior is just in such bad shape and we would love to bring in fun color accents with a more neutral backdrop. But we do love seeing the fun sherbet colors around town!

  2. Nancy Carr says:

    Karah, I love your post today and am so happy about the interview you gave. Maybe this is the first of many more. I am looking forward to reading about your father’s visit. Love you, Nancy

    • Karah says:

      You are always so supportive Nancy!! We have rain in the forecast for the next week so hopefully it doesn’t interrupt our progress with my dad. We’ll have fun no matter what. :)

  3. Ally says:

    Karah, I feel that our lives are from parallel universes. My DH and I lived in the UK in 2008 and 2009. It was also my first long term experience abroad. I think I’d prefer the caribbean to the UK, although travel thru Europe was cheap and fast, so there was that. Also, I can’t believe you have been without a/c all summer!! Florida heat is intense (I live in Tampa)! Do you have sea breezes or something to keep you all cool?

    • Karah says:

      Ugh!! Joel and I have commented to each other so many times that it feels so much hotter here than in Curacao. We didn’t have central air in Curacao, but there were awesome sea breezes. We have none of that here … and it’s so humid! Go figure, now that we have AC there’s rain in the forecast all week. hahaha I think because the house was in such transition it helped it seem more normal to just have the doors and windows open, and now having it seems like such a luxury. :) So fun about living in the UK, I think that would be fun, too!! I love Europe!

  4. JolieAnne says:

    So glad I found your blog-don’t know how I did but I enjoy what you write. I live in Florida w/hubby 3 sons and 5 dogs in a Key West style house. Guess what ? it is PINK! With white trim. I am okay with it but would not have personally picked it from a dreamy batch of paint chips! I love a pale aqua -think sea glass/ pale aqua- or a
    white house with lovely shutters in whatever color I wanted that year!
    I wouldn’t hesitate to do gray on the inside-that is a beach-y color too! I am thinking of the palest color of driftwood that washes up on the beach here. We are not on the beach but we are close to the inter coastal water way. Our boys kayak over to the beach, my husband snorkels/dives while I hunt for shells or take a few minutes to do some yoga on the beach. It is a great way of life for us! Love the Keys, too!

    • Karah says:

      Hi JolieAnne!!! I have no idea how you found the blog either, but I love your comment. I really want to keep a bit of Key West quirk to the house and color, I just don’t want to it to be all “HEY it’s Key West and I’m quirky”. :) I love the journey to find the right mix for each house!! And gathering driftwood and seashells/glass at any time is my idea of fun!! :)

  5. Well I’m really behind. Congrats on the mag interview. I’m going to check it out.

Let me know what you think!