Costa Rican Meal by the Sea

Fried Chicken CasadoCosta Rica Cost of Living Update: Fried Chicken casado by the sea— $5

We are getting near the end of the dry season, but at the moment things are nearly as dry as they can get. For locals this means two things: It will be very hot— and things will be very dirty—until the true rainy season is upon us. It’s this time of the year when unpaved roads become elongated dust trails. If you ride a scooter or take your bike to work, you’ll be inhaling a healthy dose of grit by the end of your ride. Driving in a car or SUV will not protect your nasal passages from the formation of clumpy dust bunnies either.

“Is dirt coming out of the air-conditioning vent?” I ask Rob while we’re heading out for lunch.

“No, I think it’s coming from the dashboard. Or maybe from the doors. Is there a hole in the floor?”

It’s not the strangest question. There could be a hole in the floor since there are tons of problems with our car. I think something is leaking and our transmission keeps slipping. I actually don’t mind the latter since it makes our engine sound like a Tyco Aurora slot car every time Rob steps on the accelerator. Continue reading “Costa Rican Meal by the Sea” »

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Costa Rica Podcast Interview

Costa Rica Cost of Living Update: 32 oz box of McCormick Chicken Stock— $7

Would you like to know what it’s like to quit your job and move to Costa Rica? And would you like the person telling you this to have a New Jersey accent? Well, you’re in luck!

I recently had the opportunity to be interviewed by the host at Fearless Rebelle Radio, the fabulous Summer Innanen. It was a lot of fun and Summer has a delightful Canadian speaking voice. I, on the other hand, sound like I should be an extra on the Sopranos… like a consigliere or the bookkeeper at a labor union.

We discuss why I moved to Costa Rica and the reasons I stayed and made it my home. Not everything has worked out as planned, but it has definitely been a hilarious ride.

Click play button on picture, download it here , or grab it from iTunes.

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The Monkey House is For Sale

Costa Rica Costa of Living Update: 4 pudding snacks— $2.50

I’m thoroughly excited and a little nervous about building my new home. After living in Costa Rica for seven years—and having so many once-in-a-lifetime experiences—Rob and I are ready to sink deeper roots. There is also the sadness of leaving a rental home where I had so many wonderful memories. When our landlord decided to put The Monkey House up for sale, it was time for us to move on.

Continue reading “The Monkey House is For Sale” »

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Building a House in Costa Rica

Costa Rica Preliminary House Design

Costa Rica Costa of Living Update: Building a home in Guanacaste— Approx. $125 / SqFt

Rob and I are taking the plunge and building a house. If it were up to my husband, he would build it himself out of underwear and bobby pins. Luckily for me, Costa Rica has strict building codes and—from what I can discern—doesn’t allow duct tape in any of its structures. But before we do anything, we ask around to find a great architect, one that will design our dream home and see it to fruition.

Sandy, my girlfriend who was featured on House Hunters International and in my books, is extremely happy with her architect who just like us, was cut from the final editing of her HGTV episode. It could be because my husband kept yelling “This house makes me happier than a billionaire,” every time the camera was on him. No matter what the producer said, Rob somehow found an excuse to interject the title of my book, “My wife, author of the wildly popular series Happier Than A Billionaire, loves Sandy’s choice of lighting fixtures.” This PR move left us wildly unpopular with the producer, thus our footage ending up on the cutting room floor. Continue reading “Building a House in Costa Rica” »

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Keep Calm and Move to Costa Rica

Keep Calm and Move to Costa Rica

Costa Rica Cost of Living Update: One Quart of Knockoff Brand Motor Oil at the Home Improvement Store = $12

When people think of Costa Rica they imagine palm trees, ocean vistas, and hammocks.

Expatriatism promises a simpler lifestyle that doesn’t include a cubicle or constant texts from bosses and coworkers.

After spending a little time back in the United States, it appears that Costa Rica has become the “go to” place for anyone wanting to escape and live as a castaway on some far away beach. Most of these folks seem to fit into one of three groups.

First Group of Runaways: The Criminals

I watched a variety of NCIS shows, and somewhere in the script they inevitably discover that the criminal is planning to board a plane to Costa Rica. Other prime time shows have their character—usually a Wall Street financier— skipping out on his firm and disappearing into the heart of the Osa Peninsula. If any of these TV shows are based in truth, my husband’s crazy security plans must be working. These hooligans have not come to my doorstep as of yet. Continue reading “Keep Calm and Move to Costa Rica” »

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