Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

we're having a great little easter.  ave woke up this morning so ready to see what the easter bunny brought her.  it keeps getting more fun for her the more she understands about holidays, and it makes it so much more fun for me too.  look at all those emotions.  its not even worth me begging her to smile anymore, she does just fine coming up with faces on her own. 

(i know, all these nearly identical pictures arent necessary, i couldn't resist)

but dont really let those pictures fool you, this is what she really looks and feels like today.  her poor little sick eyes make me want to cry, snuggle her, and give her anything her heart desires. we skipped out on church today, which i kinda hate to do, especially on Easter Sunday, but this little chick wasn't up for much. her immune system has been on a rollercoaster the last week or so.  our house hasn't been 100% for a while now and its just keeps spreading around. honestly, i'm getting sick of it. we'll save the cute easter dresses for weeks to come.

here's a few little fun things we did for easter prep.  

i really do love easter. and while the candy, scavengar hunts and gifts are fabulous, i mostly love how much it makes me think about our Savior and the Atonement.  What a blessing the gospel is in my life. As i think about the past year and the challenges that i've had and the opportunities i've been given to grow i know that the Lord's hand constantly is in my life.  He knows what is best for me and He loves me.  All i have to do my very best, but even some days that doesnt cut it.  If i just put my trust in Him and rely on that faith, He'll help me the rest of the way, and i know everything will always be all right.  And that is amazing to me.

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 22, 2011

easter eggs

hard boiled easter eggs remind me of my grandma webb in every way.  i'm sure she made over 100 each year and carefully hid them, along with a plethora of candy, through-out her entire yard.  she would stand at the door and watch her large family scramble through the lawn and trees and garden looking for goodies, but there was  now way she was letting you sneak more than your share . i'm sure i didnt notice how happy watching her 6 kids and all their children running in the raft river wind on a mad easter egg hunt made her then, but i can only imagine now.  she must have slaved away for hour preparing her yard and house for such a big family get together.  we would go home with enough candy and eggs to last us half the year. i miss those days and cant wait to have traditions like that in our own family. 

 it might be a little premature to have big candy hunt with a 2 year old but we can sure enjoy the easter egg decorating tradition.  i could eat hard boiled eggs every day of the year and they're that much more enticing when they're pretty.  we went fairly traditional this year but i did try out this technique, just ate the egg before the camera got to it. next year i am hitting up the DI and silk-dying eggs.  how do you like to color eggs?

i told ave to smile like a princess and show me her egg. at least she nailed the princess part.  i really didnt want a princess obsessed little girl but is there really any way to avoid it.  today we went to the "princess park" used "princess toilet paper" ate "princess food" wore a "princess dress" and nearly anything else you can imagine with the word princess in front of.  we keep things quite magical here.

if we can kick the sickness that has spread and re-spread through our house we will have a great easter weekend.  if not, we might just have a lazy one.  hope yours is fantastic!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


that was a nice little suprise to have trae make his debut on our blog. i'm so happy to have those things written down so i always remember the good and bad about brasil, although i doubt i could forget most of them, and he said it much better than i could have. however, don't believe everything he says, i'm not a saint and complain my fair share and have breakdowns just like the rest of them. i. love. that. man.  

it has been so rainy and overcast here. i'm quite enjoying it but it would be nice for a little sunshine to peek through every once and a while so our clothes would dry (we hang dry here)... i'm kinda tired or damp towels and jeans. 

we thought a little weekend get-a-way would be nice to a beach we hadn't been to yet. some friends of ours invited us along to a beach house of theirs and it was lovely.  it rained the whole time. we camped out in the ocean during the rain storms cause the water felt much warmer than the sand.  pretty sure avery sang "rain rain, go away" continuously for a good half hour with high hopes it would actually make the rain go away---it always works for Dora.  it was raining cats and dogs and was still so, warm made me wish thats how idaho weather was.  this little one loved every second of it.

can not get over that cute bum and two little braids.

we usually love the rain.  it gives us a little break from the scorching sun.  however, the family that we went with shared their feelings of rain and now it kinda makes me wish it never rained, for their case and nearly everyone else in the favela (ghetto).  Every time it rains their whole house fills with about a 2+ feet of rain. they lay pallets on the ground and walk around on those until the water subsides. can you even imagine living like that for about 4 months out of the year, if not more.  their walls are corroding and always start to mold.  i certainly wouldn't have the patience to deal with that.  they never even complain about it, just say its a trial they've learned to deal with. now every time it rains i worry about them and wonder how they do it and how we can help. every day i am here i find something i am thankful for and blessed with that i once overlooked. these people are pretty amazing.

on another note, we also went to a little birthday party for my mother in laws portuguese tutor's daughter (get that?) last week.  i probably could have bought a used car with what they spent on the party. people with money don't go small here. ave was in birthday party heaven. it took me a good day to set her straight that this was not her birthday party and that she didn't get to blow out the candles.  lots of treats, a party hat, a few arcade games later and avery was just happy to be there.  

can you believe they are brasilian?  they look so american to me, and it is so refreshing to meet someone whiter that me.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Culture Shock

Thought i would make a shout out to my amazing wife.  Hope she doesn't mind that i hacked her account, but asking permission just wouldn't have been as fun.

The past year has been a roller coaster ride.  We have been adjusting to a new culture, new language, weird food, living with family, and dealt with all of the other joys that living in a strange place have to offer.  As you can imagine the set up hasn't been ideal, but we have tried to make the best of it.

When we decided to move to Brazil my major concern was with how Lis would handle the culture Shock, and if she would enjoy it. Now that we are almost a year in i have decided that she made the adjustment better than me.  Lis is the ultimate optimist.  She always sees the glass half-full.  This is one of her attributes i admire most.  No matter how negative i tend to be, she is always sees the good.

Melissa has made substantial progress in Portuguese.  She gets along very well.  She understands the majority of things that people say to here and is just working more on responding now. Everyone here adores her and thinks she is the best.  That is saying a lot because if they could talk to her in more detail they would love her even more.

I don't know how Melissa has lived with my family for over a year now without completely wigging out.  If any one has experienced this for an extended period of time you will know exactly what i am talking about. Let just say she knows my family very well.  She has identified what my family does really well and will try to perpetuate that in our own family, and she has identified many of our false traditions as well.  Lis your a trooper.

Thanks for being here with me.  I know it hasn't been easy.

That being said i just wanted to document a little of THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY of our journey so far. 

1. Pernambucanos- (people from the State we live in) are a warm inviting people.  I will miss talking to random people in grocery store lines, in the street, at the bank or pretty much anywhere you go.  They are a friendly out-going people.
2. Heat Wave- I love the weather here. There is nothing better than 85 degree weather year round. 
3. Driving-  When we first arrived i thougth the drivers were crazy here.  Now that i have adapted to there style, i am pro Brazil when it comes to driving.  It is like Nascar getting to work every morning.
4. Ocean Breeze-There is nothing better that living right on top of the ocean.  I love the feel of the ocean breeze almost as much as laying out on the balcony in the hammock and enjoying the views.
5. Holidays- If you love holidays Brazil is the place for you.  So far during my  stay i have taken the day off for 13 national holidays, world cup game, and a couple of state holidays as well.  When it is a holiday here everything STOPS.

1. Being illegal in the country for over 3 months.  It is a long story but i don't recommend trying it.
2. When your office/home is the same place- For about three months we lived on the second floor of the office.  Let just say that the commute is short and it kind of makes everything feel like work. We had two pieces of furniture, a couch and our bed.
3. Fast food for 3 + months- Don't recommend this one either.  At first glance it looks pretty intriguing, but it gets old quick.  We were kitchenless during this time becasue my parents lived in a hotel and we lived at the office.
4. Allergies- I have no clue why but for the last 3+ months i have had allergies off and on.  We can't quite figure out what it is and why it hits hard sometimes and is dorment other times, but i am tired of itchy eyes, a runny nose, and boogers.
5. Luxary Tax- Any thing that is a luxary here is super expensive.  Electronics, cars, cell phones, they all come with a price.  It is very sad because these people deserve a lot more for less.
6. Running on Mormon Standard Time + Infinity- We consider ourselves very punctual.  It is something we strive to do.  Lets just say that we have given up trying here.  After several experiences of waiting more than an hour for someone or an event to start we just decided it is not worth it.  Any activity we have at church we just plan to show up a half hour late.  We did this a few nights ago and we were still the first people to arrive.

1. Public Displays of Affection- We have seen it all.  Youngsters on the beach to older folks making out at restaurants. It must not be to out of the norm because we 'gringos" seem to be the only ones that take notice.
2. Public Urination- Yeah, enough said.
3. Old Men in Speedos- This should just be against the rules.  The city needs to implement both a age limit and a weight limit for speedo use.
4. Filth- We feel really blessed to have had a safe and shelter up-bringing.  People are bombarded with all the filth that satan has to offer.  It is every where you go.  You see porography, prostitution, and drug abuse readily available almost every where you go.
5. Modesty- This word doesn't exist in Brazil.  That is the reason we have seen so many of the things listed above. We have spent a fair amount of time looking down at our feet this year.

Monday, April 4, 2011

oh avery

i'm at a lack of things to blog about right now, so here are some of my favorite recent avery-isms.

me- i love you avery
ave- i love you too
me- i love you more
ave- i love you lots more
me- i love you this much (stretching my arms wide)
ave- i love you as much as the twinkle twinkle little stars

okay, you win!

tonight during prayers after she blessed mom and dad and grandmas and grandpas and all her dolls plenty of times, she said, "thank you for blessings, thank you for prophet, thank you for jesus's blood and that him died from us." 

somethings sticking in that growing little brain of hers

that baby girl needs her bottle (she doesn't even drink a bottle)
that kittycat needs to play with playdough
that baby fell off the bed
that princess needs help up
that monkey needs a drink of chocolate milk. 
that little girl is hot.

the first time she said this i seriously started looking around for one of her dolls, thinking she was talking about them. nope, thats how she refers to herself multiple times a day. where did that come from?
  nomally its hilarious but 'that baby girl' might be wearing out her welcome.

"oh my goodness. i freak out."

"hi Morg and Mal. Yeah! i am so happy to see you."

occasionally she chews small pieces of gum, but i told her if she swallows it she will get a sick belly.  the other day she was chewing gum, swallowed it and said "oh no, now i have a belly sick."
she is hilarious and smart and sassy -- and i love her.