Did you see a lot of beggars in Mexico City?

One of the most interesting things is that in fact there were hardly any beggars, probably saw more people in Michigan holding a sign asking for money.

Sadly as can be, Few people maybe 3 out of many people in the st. But what I saw was children, young couples and older people using their skills to provide a service and receive compensation for their work or ability. It was a way of making living.

An old woman working selling her work, a young girl that spend two hours to work on a napkin, the lady by the bus stop selling tamales early in the morning, a lady making home made tortillas, older men providing a very old style music with an old instrument and a young couple, dad playing the trumpet and mom with a baby asking for donations. Each one of them providing a service in exchange of your support. No wonder Hispanic business are growing so fast. We are entrepreneurs at any age. A way of make living work.

Connecting with people.

While in Mexico, one of the beautiful moments was to be able to talk with anyone. A server, a vender, a waiter, etc.

Connecting with people is not just purchasing or being serve is really to make a connection on who we are, where we come from, and what do we like to do or how hard it is to do what we do. It is touching each other heart and leave a print.

Spanish Immersion Trip To Mexico City 2018

Maria, ” I want to go immerse in the community and get to hear more Spanish and have the opportunity to make a conversation with native speakers.”

Teresa had the opportunity to immerse more than the language but also she was able to immerse in the culture diversity and life styles in this huge city.

As a tutor I had the amazing opportunity to share my native language and Home which is Mexico City.

An amazing place with beautiful history and humble hard working people.

She build confidence in her conversational skills and enjoyed very much the different sites, food and traditions. Already planning on her new goals and next trip.

1989, How would I learn English in Grand Rapids MI?

Moving to my grandmother’s house was one the most unforgettable days. Grand Rapids, MI, was just like I saw it in the movies in Mexico from US. There was grass around the houses, the homes are so different, have basement and attic. So different to what I was used to. So many changes, from the shower, water and trees around the houses. So beautiful and I was so ignorant about many different simple things in a house in America. Just for example in our house in Mexico having one light bulb in the each room was all we could have. And realize that the chandelier in the dinning room had 8 lightbulbs.

Moverme a la casa de mi abuela fue uno de los días más inolvidables. Grand Rapids MI era como lo había visto en las películas americans en México. Había pasto alrededor de las casas; las casas son muy diferentes, tienen un sótano y un desván. Muy diferente a los que estaba acostumbrada. Muchos cambios,  desde una ducha, agua, árboles alrededor de las casas. Tan hermoso y  yo tan ignorante de las diferentes y simple cosas en una casa en America. Por ejemplo en una casa en México el tener un foco en cada cuarto era lo único que podíamos tener y sin embargo el candelabro del comedor de mi abuela tenía 8 focos


We arrived in July.  Just couple months before school started. Not long after we arrived a lady showed up in my grandmas house, to enroll my siblings to high school. Obviously I already graduated and 2 years into university my self. I was more interested in learning English. Community Ed. of  GR was providing classes at Instituto Hispano. Here different classes were offered to Migrant Families. They provided free transportation, and that helped us a lot, 4 days a week Monday to Thursday.

Llegamos en Julio. Justo dos meses antes de que empezara la escuela. Y después de llegar a Michigan una se♦♦ora se presento en casa de mi abuela, para inscribir a mis hermanos en la preparatoria. Obviamente yo ya me habia graduado e ido dos anos en la universidad. Estaba mas interesada en aprender ingles. La comunidad de educacion de Grand Rapods estaba proveyendo classes en el Instituto Hispano. Aqui diferentes clases eran ofrecidas a Familias Migrantes. Ellos proveian tambie transportacion gratis y eso nos ayudo mucho, 4 dias a la semana de lunes a jueves.

Meeting my new teacher there, was so much fun. She was from Cuba. Her accent, her story and her personality were so beautiful and special for me.  My favorite part of this class was to meet people from different countries. From Latin America, Vietnam, china and Bosnia. We had to make conversation only in English. We could not speak Spanish except to my Latino friends. One day we sat together in a conference room and I almost felt like we were the ONU. People from different nationalities and languages. Here I made a long time friends, we were the beginning of a new changing generation. After a one year of school learning the very basic greetings, numbers, colors, some vocabulary. I was ready for more, more grammar, more complex questions, more conversational skills. I did not want to repeat again another year of just basic. One thing that was cool was to see many professionals, native English speaking people volunteering for this program. There is when I met my good friend Ana. She welcome me to the program every day. Offering her help to me every day to learn to make more complex sentences and questions. Every step I took it was the beginning of a new change in my life. Appreciating those steps makes my life more rich.

Have a nice week!






Arriving to America

It was real! My parents had talk for a while about bringing us to a better place, where we could have a better opportunity in our future. No crime, no hunger, no earthquakes. That day was painful and exciting at the same time. To think we were leaving everything behind. My house my future career, my extended family. And excited that for the first time we were able to adventure and travel was just so unreal.  Here we are getting out of the plane in a beautiful day. I still remember that day. I wore my best dress. A dress that took about a week of work pay. Black and white and my high heels. Yes, this city girl came all dressed up. That day the weather was so hot and beautiful and very humid at O’Hare airport. They did not lets out the hall that connects to the building. We got out down the stairs of the airplane. “I felt like a very important person!” Just like those you see in the TV. Funny as can be. It was a reality. I have arrived to a new world with a different language. Our aunt was our interpreter and we followed her like a shadow.

¡Era real! Mis padres habían hablado por un tiempo acerca de traernos a un mejor lugar, donde tendríamos mejores oportunidades en  nuestro futuro. Sin crimen, sin pasar hambre y no terremotos. Ese día fue muy doloroso y emocionante al mismo tiempo. De pensar que dejabamos todo. Mi casa, mi futura Carrera, mi familia. Y emocionante porque era la primera vez que pudimos tener una aventura y viajar, era algo irreal. Y aquí estabamos saliendo del avión en un Hermoso día. Todavía recuerdo el día. Llevaba mi mejor vestido, que me tomo una semana de trabajo para pagarlo. Negro y blanco y con mis zapatillas. Así es, la muchacha de una ciudad llego muy bien vestida.  Ese día el clima era hermoso y muy húmedo en el aeropuerto de O’Hare. No nos dejaron salir por el pasillo que se conecta con el edificio. Salimos por las escaleras del avión. Me sentía como una persona importante. Como las que salen en la televisión, Tán chistoso. Era una realidad. He llegado a un nuevo mundo con diferente language. Nuestra tía era nuestra interprete y la seguiamos como su sombra.


¡Hasta la proxima!

See you next time!

Maria Krawczyk

Reading the magazines and newspapers in English.

My mother use to work cleaning the house of an American family in Mexico. And sometimes they will give their magazines or newspapers in English to my mom. She loved to look through  the magazines for the pictures of the meals. My mother would tell me ” here are some good recipes maybe you can figure out how to make some”.

After school I would sit in the stairs of my house in the patio. Trying to figure out the ingredients of the recipe with the pictures. Without realizing that I was already trying to translate. And then, yes, I found out that there were words that look the same and sound a like. Woaoh! This was a big step for me! I found this words called, cognates.

Green Bean Casserole Post-Bake1


Mi madre trabajaba antes limpiando la casa de una familia Americana en México. Y a veces ellos le daban las revistas o periódicos en inglés a mi mamá. A ella le encantaba mirar las revistas por las fotos de la comida. Mi madre me decía : ” aquí hay unas buenas recetas de comida, tal vez puedes aprender como hacerlas”.

 Después de la escuela, me sentaba en las escaleras de mi casa en el patio. Tratando de configurar los ingredients de las recetas con las fotografías. Sin darme cuenta que ya estaba tratando de traducir. Y entonces, si, yo me di cuenta que habia palabras que se paerecian unas a otras en la forma de escribir y sonido. Woao! ¡Este fue un gran paso para mi! Encontré estas palabras llamadas, cognados. 

May you have a wonderful week!

¡Que tengan una semana maravillosa!