how we all get down.
how we all get down.

It’s Brazilian Independence Day tomorrow….which is also USA Labor Day. Which is nice because that means roughly 75% of the people I know in the world will have the day off of work. We wanted to bbq but the weather is cold (70F lows) and dreary, and more suited to dating Netflix (I’ve started Walking Dead!). This hasn’t stopped my neighbors from raging. There is a full on organ downstairs giving Mass, and a guy outside yelling like he’s Tarzan swinging through the jungle. Every once in a while people start applauding. And it’s 7pm.


Speaking of late nights, Anysia and I were “kidnapped” by our Brazilian friend Larissa to go see Falamansa, famous here in Brazil for their forró music, which is traditional, accordion heavy, story-telling music meant to be danced to as a couple. Of course, it’s Brazil, so it’s also really sexy dancing. We bought tickets, and Larissa told us it started at 12am in Lapa.

!!!!! Come one now.

trying out the Walmart curlers! Thank you, Grandma!
trying out the Walmart curlers! Thank you, Grandma!

We came home after work, went to the ATM, got some pre-game, and came back home to nap. After a few hours, Larissa asked to shower first. I then learned to never let a Brazilian shower first. They take forever, and she hadn’t even washed her hair. She had, however, brought her own bath sponge, which I thought was hilarious.

Brazilians are fastidious about their hygiene – they all have toothbrushes and floss in their office desks (there is even floss in public bathrooms where tampon machines usually are. Women don’t tampon here.) and take three showers a day. I used my new curlers for the first time and felt pretty for the first time in I don’t even know how long. A while. We cabbed it over to Lapa, had awesome dinner and drinks, and then danced our hearts out until 4am. And when we left, everyone else was really just getting started.


It was one of those nights where there are no secrets between friends, everything is funny, no one is self conscious, and you dance your heart out and sing along to songs you’ve never heard before. Reminds you that it’s so so good to be alive.

love you too, boo.
love you too, boo.

It’s been a crazy few weeks at school. Teaching always is crazy though, isn’t it? It might be half the appeal – you just never know what to expect and you are challenged with something new everyday. Sometimes every minute, if God’s in a particularly fun mood that day.

I’ve been butting heads with a few students who think they know enough English to not need my class, despite all evidence to the contrary. Some evidence is pictured here.

We also have a student going through a difficult transition time with particular special needs that seem to multiply in the night and display themselves every morning in new and exciting ways, which include pinching, pulling my arm and head hair, throwing books and chairs, shin-kicking with extraordinary aim, and screaming “LEAVE ME ALONE” while I scream back “I CANT AND I WONT BECAUSE I LOVE YOU.” It’s super fun. And then an hour later he’s in my lap and we’re laughing at Youtubes of goats and doing phonics flashcards and you’re just like….I have to laugh or I will cry.

grandma glamour shots right here....
grandma glamour shots right here….

Do you know who Joyce Meyer is? Look at her picture. I always thought she was for boring old white Christian ladies. Like I was gonna wait to be a grandma before I gave her a chance. But I’ve been getting into a pretty serious relationship with podcasts lately. And my sister rec’d her, so I took a chance on a five-parter called “How Your Mind Affects the World Around You.” And it was SO FREAKING GOOD. I could quote a million things that she said, and not all of it was brand new material, but she was very funny and a lot of it really hit me in a “hey, I need to work on that,” kind of way. I will definitely listen again. Come on now.

  • one such nugget of trüf: “Would you want to be friends with you? Would you tell a secret to you? Would you go to you in times of need?”
  • Another nug: “Just decide, right now, to always be the one to apologize first.”

And in quick news…


    my friend Diana sent me the most loving and unexpected package of fall goods….we’re ready for Spring and Summer here in Brazil, but my heart expects punkin-flavored-things, so to get a box full of such goodies was such a welcome treat!!! So happy!!!

  • I have hot water for the first time ever in my shower! And we have it restored to our kitchen for the first time in about six months!! It is amazing to actually enjoy showering and to do so without a bucket in case the water goes out.
  • “Galaxy Quest,” one of the greatest movies ever, is being turned into a television series. I want to cry. God is so good.
  • the other hand is blue.
    the other hand is blue.

    Leana and I played “aunties” to our favorite South African kids for an afternoon…my nails were painted, we watched funny youtubes, they judged whose room was cleanest, we held sweaty hands to the mall to get ice cream, and they tried to pout their way into a book from the book shop. Jossy cried when we left. It was great. I went home and drank wine and skyped my loves in Hong Kong and my sister until 4 in the morning. It’s amazing to be single.

  • I am single-handedly supporting the avocado industry in Brazil.

And if you need to hear it today – you’re a beautiful sprinkled donut. And I love you for reading this.

And this is me right now: