Sunday, September 9, 2012

It is HOT, HOT, HOT here! (And it's still winter!) We  have ceiling fans in the bedrooms that help--- minimally. We have been opening all the windows and doors in the evening and early morning, but there are no screens, and everyone is getting eaten alive by mosquitoes. It has become a sort of game to see who has the most welts each morning. We actually have screens in the upstairs bedrooms (very rare here), and we are going to look for mosquito netting tomorrow to fashion some crude screens in the downstairs windows; trailer-park style.

We were invited to another barbecue yesterday by another set of neighbors, Daniel and Patricia. This one was at the beautiful lake house of some of their friends. We were treated like family, and we had a great time! The kids played in the pool and the lake, went on boat rides, and hung out with other children of similar ages. There were even 2 girls from the kids' school there! Tom and I ate, and ate, and ate some more. A Brazilian barbecue seems to be an all day eating fest. I like it!

Tom was lamenting to the men about items that he misses from home, like cheddar cheese and bacon.
Tonight, our neighbors brought us cheddar cheese:

and bacon:

Some things just don't translate.

I am happy to report, however, that we finally found peanut butter which closely resembles American peanut butter--even Keira ate it! It comes in a tiny container, and it is "muito caro" (very expensive), but I think we will find a way to fit it in our budget.

Besides the air conditioning, the cheddar cheese, and the bacon, I miss carpet (have I mentioned this before?), swiffers, and flushing toilet paper. Yep, that's right, you can't flush the toilet paper here. I just can't get over that one, so we are on the 3 square rule: if you can't get the job done in 3 squares, flush, and try again. We may be contributing to some big problems down the line, if so, I apologize to the country of Brazil. We are only using the 3 square rule at home. In public, we use the customary garbage can deposit. This can be a little confusing for Keira. When she is in a public restroom, she will yell through the stall, "Mom?! I have a question!" She waits for a reply. Then, "Does this toilet paper go in the toilet or the garbage?!" Anyone who knows Keira, knows how loud this question is asked. We try not to use public restrooms.

There are other items I miss as well. But, most of all, I miss my friends and my family. I am making new friends, who are becoming like family, but the old ones are irreplaceable. So, as I think of the things that I miss most, to ease the homesickness, I think I will change the word, "miss" to the words, "grateful for". I'm glad that I have this chance to see all that I have had, and to experience new things and new people, which will add to my life immeasurably.  I sure do have a lot to be grateful for!


  1. Mmmmmm. That cheddar cheese looks great;). I'm greatful for you!

  2. I love the last part... Changing "I miss" to "I'm grateful for" is brilliant, and exemplifies the wonderfulness that is you.