How Moving Abroad Changed My Life

Moving Abroad

A few years ago I moved from Kenya to Canada to study abroad and get my undergraduate degree. As you can imagine this was a huge change in my life and a lot changed after I moved. I have been in Canada for about three years now and a lot has changed in my life in those three years. 

A while ago I asked you guys what you wanted to see on lifesfinewhine and one of the suggestions was a post about how my life has changed after moving abroad. I thought this would be super interesting to share with you guys because as I mentioned so much has changed in the last few years. 

More Independence

Moving abroad gave me a lot more independence than before. When you live abroad there are certain things you can do that you just can’t do back home- mostly because everyone knows you lol… But seriously, I finally started to feel like a real adult and it was also a lot of fun pushing boundaries, trying new things, discovering more about myself and basically just doing stuff I have always wanted to do. 

Adulting Is Hard

Independence and feeling like an adult is all well and good until you have to take responsibility and do stuff on your own. Then it’s a total nightmare. Back home I was pretty used to relying on my parents, other family members or friends for assistance with stuff. Now I have to do everything on my own and as fun as that can be sometimes it can also be awful other times. 

I mean you have to pay the bills (did you know you have to do that every month??), book appointments (why are those still a thing??), go grocery shopping (this one is actually kind of fun!) and that is just the tip of the iceberg.  

New Experiences

One of the best things about moving abroad is that you get to have all these amazing experiences. One major way that my life changed after moving abroad was that I became a different person. No, I did not turn into Winder Woman unfortunately but I did become someone who explores a lot more. 

Back home I was pretty anxious and did not go out or do stuff as much. However, after coming to Canada I decided that I want to get out of my comfort zone and make as many memories as possible so whenever I could I would travel, go somewhere new, try a new place to eat or just do something new in general. 

I was also able to meet new people which was super fun!

I Was Forced To Grow Up

To an extent- I still think cartoons are awesome and pjs should be ugly, old and comfy af. But it did force me to mature and to think of things in a more mature way. Instead of freaking out about every small thing I learnt how to deal with my problems. 

I also learnt how to take better charge of my life, take control of things and to also be more comfortable with fighting for myself. I learnt leadership skills at school which I have found helpful in life too. I also realised that adults really don’t know what they’re doing as much as we think they do- we’re lost and confused almost all the time too! 

Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed this post and learnt a little more about the ways in which my life has changed after moving abroad. 

Have you ever lived abroad? If so, how did it change your life? If not, would you ever want to live abroad? Are you currently living abroad? Have you studied abroad? If so, could you relate to any of the things I mentioned on this post? Let me know in the comments below or if you don’t want to answer the questions simply stop by and say hi!

BTS

No, not the band… I wanted to give you a little behind the scenes/blooper story about this post. So, I finished writing this post and made the cover image for it which took forever because I had to make it HD and stuff. And finally I was done and added it to the post and that’s when I realised it said “Changes” instead of “Changed” and I had to do everything all over again 🤦‍♀️

Original cover image:


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Similarities Between Two Universities

University, Student Life and Similarities


A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of connecting with a fellow university student blogger called Camille. She studies in a university in France and we began talking on a post I published about the courses I had taken last semester and she had actually taken some similar ones. We started to chat further and realised that it would be really fun and interesting to compare the similarities and differences between the two universities since they are in different countries. We expected our experiences to be quite different but we ended up having quite a few similarities as well. I decided to post the similarities on my blog which you can read below and to read the differences in our experiences be sure to go over to Camille’s blog by clicking here. She is an amazing blogger and I can guarantee that you will very much enjoy her post!

1) Teachers are very knowledgeable in their field.


We found that in both universities the professors are experts in their field. They are very knowledgeable and it is clear that they know exactly what they are talking about and have done a lot of research. We found that in many ways this enhances the experience of studying under them because it’s always a plus to learn something from someone who knows what they are talking about and are an expert in that subject.

2) Teachers have their own views and opinions.


As mentioned above the professors are definitely experts in their respective fields and it is clear that they have spent a lot of time doing their research and studying in detail different aspects of the subject. As great as this can be it also has some negatives. At the end of the day the professors are people too and have their own theories and opinions about things. We found that since they are experts in their field they have quite strong views and opinions and this may make them a bit stubborn towards someone who may have a different opinion. We saw that in both cases this stopped students from fully forming their own opinion about the subject or rather fully expressing their views when they disagreed with the views of the professor and they may receive a bad grade for their honesty.

3) Many courses to choose from at both our universities but not at all universities.


We found that both our universities offered a large variety of courses in a large variety of subjects. I have talked about this before in my other posts about my courses but basically my university offers us two half credit elective courses a year so that you can take some subjects outside of your major and kind of expand your knowledge in other fields. Camille also mentioned how she was able to take different courses and broaden her knowledge in this way. I think it’s a really good idea to take other subjects especially those that may be unrelated to your major because it will help you pick up a variety of skills that you may not get from just doing courses for your major alone.

4)Interesting/unique courses


As mentioned in the last paragraph both out universities offer a number of courses and when we talked about them in more detail we realised that they both also offer a lot of unique and interesting courses. Again I have talked about this in more detail in posts I have done about my courses but my university offers a number of unique courses such as courses on country music, hip hop, the Sixties and more. Camille and I realised we both took similar courses about American History which was quite interesting.

5) Both offer scholarships but it is easier to get and apply for them in France.


Camille mentioned how scholarships are quite common and very easy to apply for and get in France at her university. In Canada, the scholarships are harder to get and there is quite a long process that goes into applying for them. Although this is technically a difference I decided to add it as a similarity because they do both offer scholarships and although it is a little harder to get the scholarship here it is not impossible to do if you work hard and do your best.

Differences?

I just wanted to remind everyone again to go over to Camille’s blog and check out the other half of this collaboration. She wrote her post about the differences between our universities and university experiences. You can check out her post by clicking here.

Your Thoughts

Let me know what you thought about the similarities between the two universities. Did you expect there to be these similarities? Did you have similar experiences at university or were your experiences different than ours? What did you think of Camille’s post that is linked above about the differences- could you relate to the differences? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
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Your Assumptions Answered!

I want to start this post by thanking everyone who participated and left an assumption! This was such a fun post to do and I always enjoy interacting with you guys! All of the comments have been linked back to the blog of the person who left the comment so if you want to check out any of the blogs that left an assumption just click the image or their name and it will redirect you to their site.
Rita:

Yes I am! I just turned 23 a few weeks ago!
Gina:

Yes I 100% do! If you ever do an assume post let me know I would love to participate!
Princess:

I’m either well dressed or in my pj’s- there’s no in between lol!
Joshua Shea:

I do like drag shows but I don’t watch them very often- once in a while when I need some entertainment!
thedrystraw:

Nope, you’re close but I’m actually a history major.
dfolstad58

Yes I love reading and I definitely prefer real books!
jmjvf:

Wow that is so accurate I’m genuinely terrified 😜
Kaushik Veluru:

Yeah that’s true but to be honest I’m much more of a cat person. But I do like dogs.
NottsReader:

Yeah I find it relaxing but I’m not great at it.
Matt:

Yes definitely!!
Colorful Chaos The Journey:

Yes I do and I absolutely love sloth’s!!
Bookish Refreshment:

I love travelling- seeing new things, having new experiences, meeting new people.
Rishika Jain:

Nope but I’m pretty close to Toronto!
Prachi:

I usually more of a chocolate milk kinda gal 😂
Nabeela:

Sometimes I do- Canadian winter are brutal y’all 😣😂
Silver Stone:

Yes absolutely! I prefer savory food over spicy and yes I love makeup!
Elle:

Yup I have her to thank for almost all my pictures!
Clemens P. Suter:

Is it my giant glasses that gave me away??😂 Yes I am indeed nearsighted!
Zainab:

I’m a part-time blogger and yes I love to write!
Opher:

Yes absolutely! I am very lucky to have parents who truly care a lot about the environment and they taught me from  a very young age how important it is to respect nature and to live alongside it not destroy it.
Young Artemis:

Yes for sure! If I am going to dress up it’s going to take me forever to pick the right outfit.
Xandria:

Yup- I am definitely a book person although I do enjoy the occasional Star Wars movie!
Shweta Suresh:

I LOVE coffee but because of my anxiety I had to stop drinking caffeinated coffee but I still drink decaf coffee sometimes.
Lyncrain:

Yes especially when I was a teenager- poetry was my outlet for sure.
Jim Borden:

Let’s just say I hope things change and get better in the US…
Daz:

Nope you made it!!
Tiani:

Yup I definitely prefer eating some chocolate and while reading a good book 🤷‍♀️
Nath:

I most definitely do not 😂😂 I’ve added some images as proof…
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So that’s it for now! Thank you once again for everyone who participated and I can’t wait to do another assumptions post again some time soon. Let me know in the comments below if you were surprised by any of my answers or if you expected all of them!


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5 Things I Miss While Studying Abroad

Studying Abroad

Studying abroad has been an incredible journey and experience for me. It has allowed me to grow as a person by forcing me to get out of my comfort zone and really experience a lot of new things. However, there are some things that I miss back home and I thought I would share them with you guys.

The Food


You guys know I’m a foodie and I love trying new foods and finding new places to eat. However, at the end of the day I kind of really crave the food I had back home sometimes. As great as trying new food is sometimes you miss the good old food you were so used to. As much as I love the food here in Canada I also really miss the food back home. I guess since we’re so used to the food back home nothing ever compares to it. One thing you’ll really miss while studying abroad is home food, especially home cooked meals.

Family


If you are moving abroad to study on your own one thing you will really miss is your family. Meeting new people and having new experiences is great but you will end up missing your family too. Sometimes you just want to share a meal with your whole family or watch a movie with them. It’s one thing I really cherish whenever I go back to Kenya and I try to spend as much time with them as I can.
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Friends


I have made a lot of amazing friends while studying abroad and met some really incredible people but there’s a bound you have with your friends back home that’s just different. There’s something about growing up together that makes you closer in a way that takes years. My high school friends that have kept in touch with me are an important part of my life and I do really miss them sometimes. However, I am very grateful I was able to make some really great friends here too.

Experiences


A lot of times I see friends and family members having experiences back home and that FOMO starts creeping up on me. I really miss some of the experiences I can only have in Kenya especially when my friends and family are able to experience them. I’m happy that they get these experiences but I just wish I could be there with them.

Home


I am very lucky to have a really lovely place to stay in Canada but sometimes I kind of just miss home you know. Nothing ever compares to your home that you have so many childhood and teenage memories in, that you grew up in. It’s a mix of having family around, having good memories there and just plain old being used to it.

Your Thoughts

Have you studied abroad or are you currently studying abroad? If so what did you or do you miss about home? If you haven’t lived abroad what do you think you would miss most about home if you ever do end up living in a different country? Let me know in the comments below!
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Real Neat Blog Award #6

Thank you!

I want to thank Eromonsele Emmanual for nominating me for this award! He is a Nigerian blogger and has an amazing blog about his travels and experiences. I absolutely love his blog and I think you will too so be sure to check it out by clicking here. 

THE RULES ARE

  1. Display the blog award logo on your blog.
  2. Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you.
  3. Do not forget to link to their blogging website.
  4. Answer all the questions they have given you.
  5. Nominate 7 to 10 bloggers of your choice.
  6. Ask them 7 questions.

MY QUESTIONS

1. What inspired you to become a blogger?

I needed an outlet and a friend suggested blogging and lifesfinewhine became the best outlet for me. 

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2. How do you balance your day job and blogging?

By not having a day job lol… I’m a full time student. 

3. How far away from your birthplace do you live now?

I was born in Kenya and am currently living in Canada so pretty, pretty, pretty far.

     

Me feeding a giraffe in Kenya on the left vs me pretending I’m not freezing in Canada on the right.

4. What is your favourite quote?

5. What is a strange occurrence you’ve experienced but have never (or rarely) shared with anyone?

I once saw a ghost. Not totally sure whether I really saw it or not but it felt real to me. 

6. What is one thing you’d rather pay someone to do than do yourself? Why?

If I ever have a baby I would pay someone to clean the diapers if I could afford it lol…

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7. When you joined the WordPress community, what were your thoughts? Did you have any expectations? Was there any specific reason why you chose blogging? (Apart from being passionate about writing)

No I didn’t have a lot of expectations and to be honest I didn’t think I would get any followers. I chose blogging in particular because I found social media to be, ironically, not very social. People just follow and unfollow for the sake of follows, no one talks much to one another, people are kind of superficial and the list goes on. On WordPress, however, I’ve been able to actually connect with like minded people from around the world.

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My Nominees

If you’re reading this post and feel as though this may be something you want to participate in please consider yourself nominated and use the same questions I did- I would love to read your take on them! And if you don’t want to do an entire post dedicated to it you can leave the answers in the comments below.

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5 Things I Learnt While Studying Abroad

Studying abroad has been a very interesting experience and these are some of the things that I’ve picked up over the way:
Change is good- as someone with anxiety I am not a fan of change in any way whatsoever. Weirdly enough though I love the idea of change but moving to Canada taught me that change in real life is good too and sometimes taking a chance can be the best decision of your life.
You need to find your own happiness- moving to a new place isn’t going to make you happy or satisfied. You need to find your own happiness.
Everything is a challenge- living abroad is not always what movies make it out to be. Yes, it’s an amazing experience if you make the most of it but it can also be extremely difficult. You’re in a new place where you probably don’t know anyone or anything and adjusting takes a while. Doing your research helps though!
Make the best of everything- bad things will happen but instead of fixating on these make the best of the experience and make as many memories as you can!
Every place is unique- every place is unique an beautiful and remember to appreciate this whenever you can! Make sure to make memories while you’re there and make the most of it!
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A Quick Life Update

Hey everyone! I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe. Just thought I would do a little life update about what’s going on with me at the moment.
So my university has stopped all in-school classes till further notice so I’m having online classes and have to do write ups instead of seminar cofacilitations. It’s a bit frustrating as it’s a lot of work but I don’t mind. I’m also avoiding crowded areas and I’m trying not to go out unless I need to. I’m also just trying to stay positive by meditating and things.

I’m also seeing that a lot of people are really panicking about the situation and it’s effecting a lot of people so if anyone feels like they want to talk please feel free to reach out. I know it can really take a toll on people who already have anxiety or mental health problems.
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Sunshine Blogger Award! #4

Thank you so much to Erin over at KittyJadeblog for the nomination! I usually don’t do awards but the questions on these seemed super fun I felt like I should give it a go! Also feel free to check out our collaboration posts by clicking here. 

Rules

1. Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.

2. Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.

3. Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.

4. Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.

5. List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

My Questions

1. Books or films?

Probably both- it depends on my mood because sometimes I want to be all warm and comfy with a book and other times I want to watch something and not think for a while!

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2. Are you a cat or dog person?

Lol can I’m going to have to say both again (can you tell I’m bad at picking😂). I love all animals but I guess I do feel more drawn towards cats.

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3. What is the wisest advice you have ever received?

My mum always tells me- never compare yourself to others, do what you want and what makes you happy because you are your own person.

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4. How many countries have you visited?

Four but I’m hoping to increase that number!

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5. Which ones?

Ethiopia, Mauritius, Uganda and Canada.

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6. How often to do you meditate/take time for mindfulness?

At least 15-60 minutes a day depending on how much time I have.

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7. Do you drink tea or coffee? If so, when in the day?

Tea- Usually in the morning and afternoon.

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8. How often do you write posts for your blog?

Once a day except on Sundays. I try to keep Sundays free to do stuff for myself.

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9. Where in the world would you like to live?

Bhutan or Germany or Ethiopia. I would actually like to travel continuously if possible and not settle down in just one place.

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10. Have you ever considered writing a novel?

Yes multiple times.

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11. If you had another name, what would you like to be called?

I really like the name Emma so maybe that.

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My Nominees 

Anyone who wants to try this out should feel free to and use the same questions I got because they were so good and super fun to answer!

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The Hogtown Vegan- Experience And Review

To check out more posts from my trip to Toronto click here.

So this was the last place we went to and it was definitely our favourite. As you can probably tell by the name it’s vegan and offers a bunch of amazing foods most of which are vegan alternatives for meat based foods. The place itself is really cozy and has a really cool vibe.

We ordered the buffalo wings and the Philly cheesesteak with a side of fries and as you can probably see below their portions were huge. We had to take most of the Philly cheesesteak with us because we couldn’t finish but it was so worth it. The fries were the best fries we had in Toronto and their cheese was so good. It didn’t taste like real cheese that much but it just had such a nice flavour to it that it didn’t even matter. The price was also really good for the amount we got which is always a plus!

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Overall, I absolutely loved this place and would definitely recommend checking it out if you’re ever in the neighbourhood. I’m so glad we this was the last restaurant we went to in Toronto because it really lived up to the hype!

To check out more posts from my trip to Toronto click here.

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