/ cacau beans being dried on the sidewalk / Enzo made his first hot chocolate using a cacau bean / women walking down the street with a massive chocolate cake / Baby Maria's life
All the things I do during this time of year are not getting done. My advent activity with the kids where they open up a Christmas book each night is not really going to happen. Believe it or not I actually brought 24 Christmas books from the U.S so that I can do this advent activity with the kids that I've done every single year (really only 3 years but when they're young it feels like forever). I forgot the books in Sao Paulo and my mom will bring them in two weeks and to be totally honest I'm not even feeling like I should do it. I feel super silly having lugged Christmas books, what was I thinking? If you ever move to another country do not ask me for advice on what you should take, I'm a bad decision maker when it comes to stuff.
Actually, let me just dispense one on you.
Take only what you absolutely need, and by need I mean the things that you are sure you can not find in the place you're moving to and these things have to be things you use regularly, as in at least once a week. In other words don't bring Christmas books for your family, just embrace how Christmas is or isn't celebrated where ever it is you're moving to. Assuming, of course, you're only moving there for a year or so. If you're moving permanently then take everything you own or nothing you own. I don't really know.
Speaking of moving we've been here for 3 months and we're L.O.V.E ing it. Yesterday I went running early in the morning and ended my run on a beautiful beach where I was the only person there, surrounded by huge green coconut trees and birds singing. I probably asked myself at least 10 times "is this really my life?" and then 5 minutes later when I was walking home and could hear Maria crying and Enzo crying and Christian crying (crying inside I mean), I was like "oh yeah, this is my life."
For the record two year olds are hard. I know I'm not the first one to say it but I wish I were. In other words go hug a parent of a 2 year old, I promise you s/he needs it.
It doesn't help that Maria believes she's a 5 year old and doesn't understand why she can't do everything her brother does. Enzo made a poetry book at school and he wanted me to type up a poem and send it to my Aunt, his newest email buddy. Enzo read the poem while I typed and Maria wanted desperately to participate, doing it in all the wrong ways. Both Enzo and I were getting really frustrated at her. Then when Enzo went to school she sat down with the book and "read" the opening line of the poem and then tried to read/remember the next line. She looked up at me so sad and said "Mama, me no read good." And then my heart just went craaaack.
But here's the thing Maria has a good life. The picture above is a glimpse of her day - ripe mangos and bananas for breakfast, beach in the morning, yummy lunch, shower, and a show on the iPad on the hammock before nap time. And half of the time we don't even make her wear clothes. It's a good life. But even if you have a good life it doesn't mean you can't get frustrated and even if you're frustrated it doesn't mean you can't have a good life. You following?
Oh and guess who was born just a couple of days ago? Little baby Henry. Erin, the talented designer that made my current header is the proud mama of a little baby peep-squeak. Let's all go over to her blog and give her a group hug and welcome her to mommyhood.
Friends, have a great weekend o.k.
Try to have fun and try to stay positive.