Great food for thought for all of us, women: “Woman, by Unknown Author”

When God created woman he was working late on the 6th day…….

An angel came by and asked.” Why spend so much time on her?”

The lord answered. “Have you seen all the specifications I have to meet to shape her?”

She must function on all kinds of situations,
She must be able to embrace several kids at the same time,
Have a hug that can heal anything from a bruised knee to a broken heart,
She must do all this with only two hands,”
She cures herself when sick and can work 18 hours a day”

THE ANGEL was impressed” Just two hands…..impossible!

And this is the standard model?”

The Angel came closer and touched the woman”
“But you have made her so soft, Lord”.
“She is soft”, said the Lord,
“But I have made her strong. You can’t imagine what she can endure and overcome”

“Can she think?” The Angel asked…
The Lord answered. “Not only can she think, she can reason and negotiate”

The Angel touched her cheeks….
“Lord, it seems this creation is leaking! You have put too many burdens on her”
“She is not leaking…it is a tear” The Lord corrected the Angel…

“What’s it for?” Asked the Angel….. .
The Lord said. “Tears are her way of expressing her grief, her doubts, her love, her loneliness, her suffering and her pride.”…

This made a big impression on the Angel,
“Lord, you are a genius. You thought of everything.
A woman is indeed marvellous”

Lord said.”Indeed she is.
She has strength that amazes a man.
She can handle trouble and carry heavy burdens.
She holds happiness, love and opinions.
She smiles when she feels like screaming.
She sings when she feels like crying, cries when happy and laughs when afraid.
She fights for what she believes in.

Her love is unconditional.
Her heart is broken when a next-of-kin or a friend dies but she finds strength to get on with life”

The Angel asked: So she is a perfect being?
The lord replied: No. She has just one drawback
“She often forgets what she is worth”.

silhouette of pregnant standing on seashore during golden hour
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Evening at the Nationals BallPark in Washington, DC

Family & Friends at the Nationals BallPark, Washington, DC.

Getting ready for Halloween!

Fourteen years ago…

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#October18 This year, during our Home Leave, we decided to renew our vows surrounded by the three kids, who got to see where their parents got married, in ABQ, NM. Fourteen years of married life: laughs, love, joy, challenges. The two have become five; I've gained a wonderful family in the US, and we’re grateful for what the past and present have brought us, although, intrigued with what the near future will unveil… A few tears here and there, 'cause it's the real deal – no princesses, no castles, no fantasyland –  instead, intermitent periods of single parenting, transitional homefront, endless adjustments. We chose to have these traditions included in our wedding because they are simply beautiful and full of meaning (displayed here thru the 35mm pics, back then, no one had a digital cam!). The 'arras' (13 coins poured inside our hands) symbolized our commitment to provide for the family and our trust in each other to do so. In the lasso (or 'lazo') ceremony, a rosary (in my case, um Terco Português, my mother's family tradition) was placed around our shoulders in a figure eight. As we were “lassoed” together, the rosary’s placement represents eternity and everlasting union, as well as marital protection. We're building a story for our ‘nomadic family’, and will continue to move forward, despite difficulties or unpleasant moments – and, quoting one of my favorite readings from our wedding ceremony: 💚 “love knows all things, believes all things, endures all things. Love never fails…” 💚 . . . . . #LassoCeremony #ArrasCeremony #Mariachis #ABQ #iheartNM #35mmfilm #nondigital #photography #Tradition #NewMexico #LoveNeverFails #semamoreunadaseria #relationship #marriage #WeddingAnniversary #Memories #MarriedLife #marriedwithchildren #Love 😁 #parenting #casamento #aniversariodecasamento #amor #amorincondicional #1suitcase4two

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Home Away from Home…

Kids and myself are  safely housed in Washington, DC, waiting for clearance  to go back to Havana. Team Havana is still working to restablish power, water and a safe post-hurricane routine, back home.

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💜 #WashingtonDC #ForeignService

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Havana Photography: Post-hurricane Irma

Waiting for Irma… Departing Cuba

Havana Photography: Lady in Red, Plaza de Armas

Photography: Cubanas em Havana Vieja

Havana Photography. Playas del Este: Tarara

Havana Photography: Iglesia de Jesus de Miramar

Photography: Third-culture Passport life…

Pink & Blue in Havana Vieja

Photography: Pedestrian 5ta Avenida Havana

Havana Vieja Photography: Cigars & Classic Cars

Photography: Classic Cars in Havana Vieja 

Havana Photography: week in review

Havana Photography: Corpus Christi Church

Photography: Peacock at lunch…

Havana Photography: Ford Model A, 1930

Sunday in Havana…

Heart-Shaped Malanga

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Heart-shaped Malanga leaf… 💐🌺 @ig_color

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Busy Bees…

The skies we see…

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The skies we see… 🌞🌴

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Establishing roots… new home…

Peaceful Kitesurfing…

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Watching some peaceful kitesurfing…

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Neighboring Plant Nursery

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Visiting the neighboring plant nursery…

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Boy meets Vintage Car

Snapshot: Where is Home?

Before the rain…

Playa Del Havana Club

Photography: Vintage Cars – Havana Streets

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#siganaviagem #fantrip #vivamaishistorias

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What makes a home a home?

From a fellow expat mom and blogger. A beautiful piece touching on this troubling topic, so close to our hearts! ❤️

Wegener's Wanderlust

What makes a home a home? Where is your home?

As I begin to type this, five Brazilian movers are currently carrying all of our boxed-up belongings into giant crates. As strange as this may sound, I feel a certain sense of relief that everything is now gone and all we have to worry about for the next several weeks are our three suitcases (though I am sure that living out of suitcases will get old very quickly!). But we have been living in an odd state of limbo, with our belongings separated into different rooms according to the shipment they will be packed into. I had begun “taking apart” our home about a month ago — I am definitely not a procrastinator by nature! The last task was to remove the decals from the nursery’s walls, which I did yesterday while the movers started packing us up. Perched on…

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Summer Fun: Getting a ride to the Tiki Hut (3-wheeler free bike service!)

Preview from our Southwest USA road trip

Oh, well… since time is a hot commodity during vacation, I will just share here the links with our Instagram images… once time becomes more available, a better writing/blogging job will happen. Thank you!

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Husband and I decided to have a joint June-Birthday-Celebration… back to the place we got married, some 14 years ago… lots to #celebrate! #travelwithkids Watching the #sunrise from way up high… Riding in a hot air balloon! Thanks to the awesome flying crew from Rainbow Ryders, we had the safest experience… followed by some well-deserved #champagne drink for the grand finale! #outdoors #hotairballoon #adventure #upintheair #wonderful_places #landofenchantment #travel #rainbowryders #traveler #bucketlist #NewMexico #birthday #loveneverfails #familytravel #traveltips #albuquerquesunrise #ABQ #viajenocel #ballooning #flying #fantrip #atalantaworld @umaviagem @ig_color #travelawesome #landscape @travel__blog @viagemeturismo #blogmochilando #MissaoVT

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Interesting coincidences traveling brings us! My father's first job, at the age of 15: apprentice telegrapher, while leaving at the Brazilian countryside, in Ceara. . . During our morning's visit to the Las Cruces Railroad Museum, our kids got to learn about the challenges and excitement faced by men like their grandad'. Also, the museum is located by the corner of Miranda and Las Cruces… life has crazy ways to surprise us all! #museum #railroad #LasCruces #travelwithkids #welltravelled #telegraph #trainstation #NewMexico #Mesilla #tripadvisor #traveltips #multicultural #travel #vacation #Southwest #oldtown . #memories #photography #history #roadtrip #typewriter #santaferailroad #oldwest #landofenchantment

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All-day sightseeing! Morning in Las Cruces, Afternoon drive to Mesilla and lunch at the La Posta Restaurant; heading out to the White Sands National Park, with an added bonus: stop for a well-deserved wine tasting, before catching the sunset view at the Park! . . #riograndewinery #NewMexico @wanderful.destinations #WhiteSands #NationalPark #Photography #Outdoors #nofilter #roadtrip #familia #travel #travelwithkids #landofenchantment #budgettravel #southwest #vacation #summer #traveler #photographer #sunset #toptotravel #wanderfuldestinations @travelwithusallover @umaviagem #umaviagem #expatfocus @travel__blog #vibenaviagem #passionpassport #ig_fotogramers @goneoutdoors #fantrip @styleyourselfie

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National Radio Astronomy Observatory. ✅ Car stop here suggested by the husband (who, as you will see here, apparently can't take a selfie to save his life! 😍) That suggestion pleased the #geek wife and mother, as well as our '3 aspiring explorers' and the #scientist in-the-making 😃 #NewMexico ✅The Very Large Array is the most versatile, widely-used radio telescope in the world. It can map large-scale structure of gas and molecular clouds and pinpoint ejections of plasma from supermassive #blackhole. ✅ It is the world’s first color camera for #radio #astronomy, thanks to its new suite of receivers and a #supercomputer than can process wide fields of spectral data simultaneously. The VLA is also a high-precision #spacecraft tracker that #NASA and ESA have used to keep tabs on robotic spacecrafts exploring the #SolarSystem. ✅ Each of the VLA’s 28 telescopes (including the one that is a spare) is an 82-foot dish with 8 receivers tucked inside. ✅ The dish moves on an altitude-azimuth mount, what you’ve probably seen as a classic tripod mount: it tilts up and down and spins around. #telescope #verylargearray #VLA #NRAO #desert #science #roadtrip #travel #travelwithkids #Southwest #Vacation #budgettravel #traveltips @theinvisibleuniverse #signs #vlba #radioastronomy #discovery #lpfanphoto @travel__blog #toptotravel #moodygram

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Celebrating Mother’s Day in a very ‘Brazilian Cerrado’ style – hiking to the Itiquira Waterfalls!

It’s about a 2 hour drive from Brasilia, in order to get to the waterfall, but it is definitely worth the trek![as described by Giddyforpoints, on First2Board – thank you for sharing!

Map to Itiquira Falls

Local name: Salto do Itiquira
Location: Formosa, Brazil

The Itiquira Falls is a waterfall in Brazil. They are located 34 kilometers north of Formosa in the state of Goiás and 115 kilometers from Brasília on a paved road. The falls have a height of 168 meters, making them possibly the highest accessible waterfall in Brazil and the second highest overall. The falls are formed by the drop of the Itiquira River from the higher central plateau north of Formosa into the deep Paraná River valley. The waters are unpolluted and a bottling plant is located on the river above the falls. The area is a municipal park and is protected from development. There are tourist facilities outside the park, near the entrance. (source: Wikipedia)

Thoughts on our regular ‘socially busy’ weekend…

Not much to report… our expat lives on-the-go continue to move according to plan.

We’re, although, entering the countdown mode: family pack-out scheduled for May 22nd; pre-packing, sorting, desperation mode should likely kick in about now 🙂

So much to do, and yet, not enough time, very common complaint from our fellow Foreign Service friends.

Not much to report… our expat lives on-the-go continue to move according to plan.

We’re, although, entering the countdown mode: family pack-out scheduled for May 22nd; pre-packing, sorting, desperation mode should likely kick in about now 🙂

So much to do, and yet, not enough time, very common complaint from our fellow Foreign Service friends – it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve done. How many HHEs and UABs your family has separated for packing and shipping; how many pieces of advice other families with school-aged children have been shared with you. Really. You may have moved a dozen times, lived under not-so-easily-adjustable conditions, and yet, you’ll find yourself questioning your life/career decisions – exactly the same way you did during the very first move!

The Stress is Real!


Unfortunately, there’s not much that can be done to avoid it. The moment the pre-packing survey takes place, we [always!] come to the realization:

“Why do we keep doing this?” or “Why did I buy this gigantic piece of furniture/decoration/local artistic whatever??”


And the worst part, is the look of disbelieve the movers give you hat very moment:

“WOW! We’ve encountered some strange people in this line of work”… followed by their words of ‘comfort’:

“Don’t worry Sir, we’ve seen worse” 🙂

All that said, The Mirandas have decided to begin our ‘pre-moving entertaining mode’, a proven strategy to safeguard our healthy intra-family relationships, and our sanity! 🙂

Here are a few examples of our recent weekend activities [links will take you to the images]:

And… cooking, hosting and sharing our challenges and lessons learned with friends

Or, taking a break from work! 🙂

Or even, enjoying uniquely strange moments with like-minded, equally stressed expat folks! 🙂

From our Mexican-American-Brazilian household to yours: Happy Cinco de Mayo!



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Showing life in Brazil to our American family members!

The eldest member of our US-based Miranda Family, comes to Brasilia! Or, as the kids like to call him, their ‘Abuelito’ 🙂
Here, joining the kids for some well-deserved Easter Egg Hunt fun, organized for the US Embassy community:

Moving on, we’ve decided to join the Mirandas & the Nogueira Lima families: we all headed up to see the Brazilian part of the family in Fortaleza – taking the American ‘Abuelito’ to go visit the kids’ Brazilian uncles, aunts, cousing and grandparents? All aboard, heading to the Northeastern coast of Brazil for Easter Weekend! 🙂

Brazil & US Families together!

Back in Brasilia, how about start the weekend fun for our second guest, with some typical feijoada, caipirinhas and tropical fruit juices, while listening to traditional “chorinho” [samba] and Bossa Nova? All by the lake Paranoa side, watching the weekenders riding their boats, jet-skis and kayaks… Table for 16 people, please!

Gotta always save some [physical] energy for joining the US Embassy community during a friendly basketball mini-tournament, right?

Mid-afternoon sightseeing… ice-cream, anyone? Even better if it’s sold from a red vintage VW! 🙂

Considering making and keeping healthy friendships [in our case, our expat fellow friends] are the most important part of this ever-changing life, a few images from a night with friends, celebrating life, friendship, birthdays and good food! One of the pictures here is a ‘multi-collage’… guess which!

What now?? Some family time back at our Lago Sul house, having fun with the little “resident monkeys”? 🙂 Priceless!

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Our little resident monkeys 🐵🐒🐵🐒🐒 Impossível, sendo mãe e bióloga, nesta linda tarde de domingo, ver estas criaturinhas no quintal e não aproveitar o momento com os filhos! 🤗😎 The black-tufted #marmoset (Callithrix penicillata), also known as Mico-estrela in Portuguese, is a species of New World monkey that lives primarily in the Neo-tropical gallery forests of the Brazilian Central Plateau. O MicoEstrela, também conhecido sagui-de-tufos-pretos, ou somente sagui, sendo reconhecida como uma espécie de primata do Novo Mundo, pertencente ao gênero Callithrix, cuja origem é brasileira. #teachingmoment #backyard #mico #cerrado #faunadocerrado #Brasilia #Brazil #nature #wildlife #video #lagosul @atalantaworld @travel__blog

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Brasilia, our current home, and a city planned to host the coutry’s federal government, is famous for [among other things!]:

a) its unique sky colors & the typical Cerrado vegetation

b) its architectural lines and building structures, its religious/faith-based centers, bringing out a strange, yet passionate urban beauty:

Snapshots of our little expat life in Brazil…

Some may think being an expat is hard, living the ever-changing routine, adapting/adjusting as you go…

Some others may find it intriguing, exciting and worth pursuing, despite the constant uncertainty and the last-minute life-changing decisions ones is often faced with.

Our family falls right in the middle. It’s definitely not the easiest lifestyle; nevertheless, worth every bit of it!

Coming back to reality…

Traveling on a kid-friendly budget: Six days in Uruguay, South America

Want to know more about our family trip to Uruguay, it’s capital, Montevideo, the charming province of Punta del Este and the historical province of Colonia del Sacramento? All within a family-friendly budget, spread out thru bus rides, hiking trips, smart hotel and dining options searching! Just stay tuned (or send us a message using the comments section below – we will be glad to share our travel tips and family challenges!) 😲

For now, we will leave you all with a few collage pics from our traveling family Instagram (@expatmomof3) profile. Thank you for stopping by!

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#Travel #Uruguay

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#Uruguay #familytravel

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Now, heading to Colonia del Sacramento!

Back in Montevideo, for some amazing History of Soccer!

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Day 4 #travel #Uruguay

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Another great, safe and enjoyable bus ride, took our family to the charming beach resort region of Punta del Este…. for some well-deserved endless vacation time!

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#Porto #PuntadelEste #uruguay

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