7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

July 9, 2017
7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

“You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

I saw this quote the other day, and it really got to me the more I thought about it.  Turns out, I’ve already been doing a lot of the “things I thought I could not do” – just this year.

Here are 7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

1.  I never thought I could retire in my early-40s.

But yet – here I am.

2.  I never thought I could make my own pesto sauce.

This may sound odd to you, because I now know that making pesto from scratch is quite easy. While living in Dallas, I had looked up recipes for pesto several time, but I think the food processor business just scared me.  Whenever we dined at Italian restaurants, I’d ALWAYS order a dish with pesto sauce.

And now, I make my own – and it tastes so gourmet to me, it’s crazy.   BTW – swirled with tomato sauce on my homemade pizza?  – THE BEST!

3.  I never thought I could move to and live in a foreign country.

Fact.  Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could do this, or even consider such a thing.  But yet – here I am…  in a country where I don’t know the language and also in a place that has over 300,000 species of bugs!

4.  I never thought I could make my own tomato sauce.

Blanch tomatoes?  Peel the skin off?  Chop and de-seed?  That’s way too much work for this girl!  Well, I found an awesome easy crock pot recipe – where I don’t have to blanch or peel or de-seed.   I just chop the tomatoes up – throw ‘em in the pot, add a bunch of herbs and seasoning, simmer for a while – and presto!  This sauce is amazing – and you can keep it chunky when you’re done, or blend it for a smoother sauce.  I love it!

7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

5.  I never thought I could make my own bread…  Or pizza dough…  Or pie crust…  Or anything with a rolling pin.

Before, whenever I saw the words “knead” or “roll out” in a recipe – I stopped reading. There was no way I was doing it.  I must give credit here to my friend Emily, for when she told me she made her own bread and a whole array of other things from scratch and I stared at her in amazement, she was like, “What?  You can do it too!”  She encouraged me to try…  And once I did, I was hooked. (She was right!  I could do it!)

There’s some wonderful pleasure to be had in cooking with whole ingredients and making your own items from scratch.  And really – after I took my first stab at things, like kneading and using a rolling pin, it wasn’t so bad.  I really could do these things…  look:

7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

6.  I never thought I could write a book.

I’ve read almost my whole life, since the time I first started reading, really.  But every time I actually thought of writing a book, I was like – no way.  How would I start?  How could I write to draw people in, or make it interesting?  Did I have to have an outline first?  UGH.

Yep – I am now writing a book (it gives me a thrill just to say those words).  And although it would be nice if people like it, I really don’t care – because I am doing one of the “things I thought I could never do.”  I think it’s pretty darn cool, regardless of whether my book is liked or not. (Remind me not to care later, when it’s published.)

7.  I never thought I would zip-line.

And I was right – I never will!  The difference on this one is – I COULD do this thing, if I really wanted to, but I have absolutely no desire to.  It would not “better” my life in any way.  In fact,  I’d probably have a heart attack – definitely not good for me.  So, no, you will not find me zip-lining (ever).   And if I did zip-line (which I won’t) – do you really think I would look like this?

So – what is a thing YOU could not do, and have NOW done?  Or are trying to do in the near future?  Because trust me…  you can’t say that you “can’t” do it, until you first try.


7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

Further Reading about Moving to Costa Rica

12 Surprising Things About Costa Rica
A Conversation With The Costa Rica Chica
The Culture Shock of Moving to Costa Rica with My Family


Have you traveled to Costa Rica? What were your impressions? Email us at editor@pinkpangea.com for information about sharing your experience and advice with the Pink Pangea community! We can’t wait to hear from you.

 7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica top photo credits by Unsplash.

About Jen Beck Seymour

Jen is the author of four books, all found on Amazon. When Jen is not writing, she is either hiking, making jewelry, baking, sipping coffee, reading, playing piano or enjoying a glass of wine. Her next adventure is to hike Spain’s Camino de Santiago this fall. You can see her vlog of the AT, as well as the future Camino on YouTube under “Appalachian Trail Tales.”

5 thoughts on “7 Things I Didn’t Think I Could Do Until I Moved to Costa Rica

  1. Troy WR
    September 8, 2015

    I used to not think I would ever live in the same neighborhood as hispanics. I tried a tortilla yesterday!

    • Jen Seymour
      September 8, 2015

      That’s awesome Troy! 🙂

  2. September 5, 2015

    A great and fun read!
    I also retired early and moved to mainland Mexico with my husband and our now 11-year-old twins on my 44th Birthday back in 2012!
    Loving and Living this adventurous life!
    Looking forward to following your adventures as well!
    Los O’Gradys in Mexico

  3. Gary James
    September 2, 2015

    Right on the money Jen! Oddly my life parallels yours. Keep at it!

    • Jen Seymour
      September 2, 2015

      Thanks for your comment Gary! 🙂

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