Miami

Last month I spent time in South Florida. I visited my brother in Delray Beach, had an interview in Fort Lauderdale, and visited an old friend in Miami.

First off, I accepted the job and will be relocating soon…. TBA

Secondly, Miami is awesome. I spent my short time in the city soaking up the awesomeness of the Wynwood Art District. Highly recommended for those interested in street art.

It was nice to visit an old friend. He was a foreign exchange student with family my senior year of high school. His sister is studying photography and took the below photos of me.IMG_1402 IMG_1419 IMG_1422 IMG_1427 IMG_1429 IMG_1440 IMG_1449 IMG_1462 IMG_1464 IMG_1465 IMG_1468 IMG_1469 IMG_1471

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TEFL 101

Even today, close to four months after having left Prague, questions continue to flood in regarding my time in the Czech Republic.

“What were you doing over there?”

“Was it hard to teach English?”

“How did you find a job?”

“How much do I need to save beforehand?”

“I’m tired and need a change, how did you teach English in Prague?”

I truly enjoy answering all questions thrown at me and take time to thoughtfully answer each one.

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Not only is teaching abroad in Prague a simple decision, but it’s quite easy to execute as well.

The country, as a whole, is inexpensive.

A TEFL course is easy to sign up for.

Finding a job, post course, is made easy by the connections made through The Language House (TLH).

I decided in March that I was going to teach English abroad, and moved at the end of August; in a matter of five months I made all arrangements necessary to tie up loose ends in California and throw myself headfirst into a foreign country.

Upon moving over there, I didn’t know a single person.

I had never been to Prague before.

In fact, I had never been that far East before.

I really had no idea what I was getting myself into. Beyond the TEFL course I was signed up for, I had no plan regarding job, visa, money or a home.

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I would encourage everyone, at some point in their life, to take a leap and live abroad. Ideally, go on your own and have no expectations. It is such a life changing experience that I’m so incredibly thankful to have accomplished.

Of the twenty something students I took TLH course with, I was one of the first to leave Prague – some seven or eight months after the course. Each of the students found their niche in the country, found a job (or multiple jobs) and made a life in the new country. A pretty good success ratio if you ask me. As of now, a majority of those students are still in Prague.

Teaching English is a very rewarding experience that introduces you to new cultures, ideas and perspectives.

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TLH is a month long intensive course that will give you all the skills necessary to teach English to a non-native speaker. After completing the course I felt confident in my ability to teach private or group language lessons at any age.

I had lesson plans all ready to go, and plans A B and C ready for a lesson that might not go as planned.

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I was set up to successfully teach a class all on my own.

I ended up working full time at an international school, “teaching” 2-5 year old students from all over the world. I use the word “teaching” loosely because it’s quite hard to really teach children that young. They are sponges, everything is new to them. Not only were we teaching, but we were feeding, putting to nap, reading to, and playing with these kiddos all day long.

One of the best parts was seeing these kids from all over the world, from all different backgrounds and native languages, speak to one another…Rather, I should say say, attempt to speak to one another.

For example one of my students had a mother from Ukraine, a father from Saudi Arabia, she was living in the Czech Republic and went to an English language school. This little four year old was already exposed to four different languages on a daily basis. That’s not even including the languages her peers were speaking in their free time.

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My students were from Malaysia, South Korea, Turkey, Africa, Germany, Russia, Chechnya, Ukraine and more. An insane amount of nationalities were covered in one school grade.

The opportunity to work with these kids, speak to them, and watch them learn and grow is one that I never would have imagined I might have.

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So, I say go for it. If you’ve been thinking about living abroad, teaching English as a foreign language, or just going on an adventure, this is one of the best and most affordable ways to make it feasible. Consider this your final push to take the leap into a new life changing experience.

Feel free to email me with any more questions. I didn’t bother covering all the boring logistics and details in this post but will do so in the future; sakehm@gmail.com.

Below are some photos of my sweet little students.


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Heather Bode Photography

Not long ago I met someone on Craigslist. The job market in the Milton and Pensacola area is sparse, causing me to resort to any means necessary in terms of job searching. I came across a photographer “seeking a ‘model’ for some creative shoot” he or she was hoping to do.

Being Craigslist, I was well aware that this could easily be code for: “I’m a skeezy ‘photographer’ seeking nude model that I will likely abduct, cut into bits, burn and bury.” So naturally, I sent an inquiry. (Just kidding, Mom!)

But really, I did send an email, only because the post was created very carefully, it had a great tone, correct grammar usage, and everything was spelled properly- Hard to come by in the world of Craigslist.

I got a quick reply laying out the info and what they were looking for. We set a date to get coffee at the local Starbucks. Mid-day, busy place, should be safe.

To wrap things up, she was sweet, her name is Heather, she is a wonderful photographer interested in fashion and creative shooting and just needed someone to work with! Voila! How convenient, a blogger in need of quality photos, also seeking someone to work with.

We made plans and had our first photo shoot just about a week ago.

Check out Heather’s website here and her blog here.

Wearing: drop-crotch, wrap pant from Asos |Asymmetrical tank by TopShop (old) |DVF scarf from Scout Boutique on Palafox | Rebecca Minkoff sandals245A2212 245A2866 HeatherBode1 245A2702

street smART

Locating street art is always a priority with each new destination. Tastefully done street art typically means you’ve found a potentially “hip” area packed with all sorts of local hubs waiting to be discovered. Over the years I’ve made an effort to track down some cool looking walls and photograph my favorite pieces.

The following six were taken by me in 2012 in East London near Brick Lane.IMG_2258 IMG_2259IMG_2146 IMG_2153 IMG_2156 IMG_2158

Cork, Ireland, 2012
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Český Krumlov, Czech Republic, 2014

Banksy art, London 2015IMG_3233East London, 2015

IMG_3222 IMG_3224Vienna, Austria 2015IMG_3456 IMG_3694Berlin Wall, Germany 2015IMG_3811 IMG_3812 IMG_3818 IMG_3819 IMG_3820 IMG_3845 IMG_3842 IMG_3843

 

Dear Milton, Florida,

I would like to take the time to commend you on some newly discovered hidden gems scattered throughout your “seemingly” boring boundaries.  I have been pleasantly surprised on multiple occasions over the last few days, as I have stumbled upon various restaurants, cafes and antique shops. I must admit, upon moving to your township two months ago, I was slightly hesitant to leave the comfortable confines of your more attractive, popular, big sister Pensacola, but hereby declare that I have been sorely mistaken. New, self-gathered evidence points that Milton truly is a quaint, entertaining town all on it’s own. That is, if you’re willing to give it a chance.

Well done, Milton. I applaud you and look forward to future discoveries.

With newfound respect,

Sarah

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Alright guys, it’s true – there really are places worth visiting in Milton! I am finding that I am really starting to enjoy myself here. From Bands on the Blackwater activities each Friday evening, to the quaint little thrift shops and antique stores, I’ve certainly been finding a lot to enjoy.

I’ve recently learned that Historic Milton is having some trouble thwarting plans of an intrusive four-lane highway. The highway proposal could potentially destroy old buildings in its charming district as well as redirect any prospective tourism straight out of the pleasant little downtown.

“Saving downtown does not just mean saving our past, it means investing in the brightest future for our beloved little city.”

In honor of small towns everywhere, let’s hop on board and help give Milton a chance to prove itself. For more information read and sign the petition here to help fight for preservation of Milton, Florida’s Historic District.

OR if you live in the area, stop by Old Post Office Antiques. Sign in person and enjoy one of the lovely buildings that could potentially be harmed by the lane add-ons. They also have the most delicious lunch cafe with the sweetest staff.

Wearing: Rag and Bone denim, thrifted neck tie ($1 downtown Milton!), Mango gladiators here (40% off!)



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Blackwater Bistro-ah-go-go

 

Milton eateries are hard to come by. We’ve discovered one that has quickly turned into a regular destination. Easy, delicious and friendly, Blackwater Bistro is on the top of my short, Milton ‘must eat’ list. I always show up for the buttermilk pie but usually end up taking it home, because I can’t say no to the pre-meal artichoke dip.

If you’re a beer lover, the Civil War is a must try, half yuengling, half aibta, half awesome. Get the large and thank me later.IMG_1874_1 IMG_1878_1 IMG_1880_1 IMG_1881_1

Fort Pickens, FL

Over the last few years I’ve always made an effort to explore and get to know each unique place I have lived. Today my friend Brittany and I ventured out to historical Fort Pickens. Built in the 1830’s its purpose was to protect and defend the township of Pensacola.

Now the site is merely ruins; full of tunnels and damp, brick hallways dripping with stalactites and mold. A visitor can spend hours wandering through the crumbling hallways and rooms of the old fort. Quite a unique experience.

Brittany is a new friend and great photographer! She was teaching me the basics for a good shot on my new Canon Rebel SL1. 

Wearing: Free People shorts, similar ones here | Top from Pure Pilates in Pensacola | Georgina Sandal sold here or at Scout Boutique, also in Pensacola.

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The Broad Abroad Pt. 5 – What Travel ‘Looks’ Like

Hi again. In an attempt to make my blog more relevant I’ve collected photos of some of my favorite travel looks. Past posts elaborate on the actual travels, but now I want to incorporate my style choices. When I moved to the Czech Republic I took two suitcases and left a closet full of clothes in storage, woe is me. I managed to pack sensibly, as well as fashionably, for a warm fall and cool winter in central Europe.

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Paris, France Wearing: J Brand denim | Chelsea Boot by Clarks | Faux fur scarf from Madewell

 

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Vienna, Austria -Schönbrunn Palace Wearing: This Top Shop coat and H&M bag haunt my winter travels, it was always so cold that I ended up wearing my coat in almost every photo. It served me well along with the oversize, inexpensive bag. Perfect for carrying all travel necessities.

 

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Vienna, Austria – MuseumsQuartier Wearing: I managed to ditch the coat on second trip to Austria, as it was ever so slightly warmer. Top from Zara | Denim by French Connection | Chelsea Boot by Clarks

 

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Prague, Czech Repubic Wearing: Knee-high wool socks | Leather pleated skirt from Top Shop | Sleeveless top from Top Shop

 

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Czech Countryside Wearing: Adidas insulated running tights | Boots by Dr. Martens | My dad’s old plaid button-up | Vest by J-Crew | Kipling bag

 

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Berlin, Germany – The Berlin Wall Wearing: Faux fur coat from Zara | Top Shop denim | Puma tennis shoes (Thanks Cassy!)

 

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Paris, France Wearing: Turtle neck and skirt from TopShop

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**Below are more looks of key pieces recycled throughout my adventures.

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Český Krumlov, South Bohemia

 

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Prague, Czech Republic – Abandoned warehouse

 

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Switching trains in Linz, Austria

 

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Vienna, Austria – MuseumsQuartier

 

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In “The Nature” Czech Republic

 

Prague, Czech Republic – John Lennon Wall

 

Prague, Czech Republic – The Magical Cavern