Un Mes en los Estados Unidos

Ah home…so much to love about going home to the U.S., and yet so much weirdness going on there that we feel somewhat relieved to be living in Mexico right now. What’s to love about visiting the U.S.? In a nutshell, family, family, family; great friends; snuggling with Hobie Cat (the pet we foisted upon my parents about 10 years ago); the wide variety of food options (especially Thai and Indian), and of course, Thanksgiving dinner and lefties; being able to watch Netflix and college hoops (Narcos and Michigan State Spartans, in particular); fast and reliable internet; and did I say family and great friends? I do have to say, however, that we missed laying our eyes on and giving hugs to a handful of folks with whom we just couldn’t manage to connect (e.g., Erin and Simon, Tom and Barb, Vicki and Dan, Mich, Gunther and family, Erin and Rob, etc…sheesh. Next time!).

What are we content to live without? Driving, parking, driving, and sitting in traffic; the 24-hour news cycle with “news” that detracts from what is really important (i.e., Trump vs. LaVar Ball – what?! Who gives a rat’s…?) instead of focusing on issues/legislation that’s being slipped through or buried without notice; hearing about more and more gun violence; hearing about conspiracy theories surrounding the man on the moon and the earth being round; the holiday shopping rush (I mean, geez, Christmas trees and decorations go up before the Thanksgiving turkey has even been carved!); and did I mention sitting in traffic?

All-in-all, we love going back to the U.S. I mean, when else do we get to peruse all the marine stores around Point Loma and spend a bunch of money on boat stuff that’s difficult to get in Mexico? We also got to experience three very different climates: SD/PS – shorts weather, yet cool, crisp mornings and evenings; TC – gray, gray, gray, rain, snow, and butt-COLD; and Taos – gorgeous, wide-open, blue skies above a vast sagebrush ocean and also butt-COLD! Good thing we store a bunch of clothes at my dad’s house; we were uber-prepared for whatever Mother Nature threw at us this trip!

ML in the middle 🙂

One thing we weren’t prepared for was for our BFF, Flea, to lose her sweet Mom, ML. It’s been a rough couple of years for us and some of our friends who have lost one or both parents; I guess we’re in that age class. ML was stricken with ALS two short years ago, but the actual diagnosis was slow in coming. Sadly, ML lost the battle a bit before Thanksgiving, but she was celebrated well by those near and dear to her, who will miss her terribly.

So, yes, going home is wonderful, but it sure makes it difficult to leave when the time comes. While we miss da boat a great deal when we’re gone, once we return, at least for me, it just reinforces the communication challenges and the distance between me and my peeps. I tend to worry more and think about and text everyone constantly for the first few weeks after leaving them. I’m sure I’m a pain their backsides, especially because most everyone is at work! Oops. Regardless, we love going home, but we love returning to Free Luff, too.

Enjoy the pics and the vids (the Michigan vid contains copyrighted music by The Clumsy Lovers, and I neglected to gain the appropriate permissions, so the music may not play. Sorry for that.). Thank you to all who contributed photos to this post!!

First stop – San Diego and Palm Springs, California

One of the reasons we timed our trip to San Diego when we did was so we could be present at Uncle Nobi’s (one of my Mama’s little brothers) surprise 80th birthday party. It was an amazing event for an amazing man. Plus, it turned into a family reunion for both the Sato and Sawasaki sides of the family! Super duper fun!

Next stop – Traverse City, Michigan, for some Fraser Family fun!

Third stop – Taos, New Mexico, for a little cuddlin’ with Hattie Jean!

Last stop – Back in San Diego for Thanksgiving holiday festivities!






  1. Adam Hopps

    Great post and fantastic pics! Thank you so much for visiting and can’t wait to visit you! P.S. We new New Mexicans now notice and despise all the traffic too 🙂

    1. Jody Fraser

      We loved loved loved visiting you guys! We just wish you weren’t in the NEW Mexico because then we’d see you more often. We’ll keep up with Hattie J on IG! Love you guys a ton!!

  2. Ryan Fritzsche

    Yeah. A real good stack of photos. If it were 20 years ago you could have filled a shoe box from that one trip. (Sketchers probably)
    Good work!

    1. Jody Fraser

      I took a lot of photos because I couldn’t engage in any conversations – I had laryngitis almost the whole time in MI! Ha! It was wonderful to SEE you, Ry. Hope it happens again very soon.

  3. Tom Dilworth

    You guys really put in the effort on the blog—it’s unbelievably cool to see what we just saw—we cannot miss you next time we are in close proximity! If we were where I wouldn’t mind being right now, (like Mexico, duh) I’d row over and give you congratulatory hugs for being such great cameraographers and communicators. We miss you!

    1. Jody Fraser

      Hola! We will NOT miss each other next time we’re in close proximity! We are so sad we couldn’t connect. Glad you enjoyed the pics – it’s always a lot of fun making people smile against their will. Haha!! Love you guys!

  4. Jilly Hasty

    Looks like a great time. Love all the pics!

    1. Jody Fraser

      It was wonderful despite missing some people and both of us getting sicky. Had to get our fill since we’re spending the upcoming holidays in La Paz. Hope you two are well!

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