For the holidays this year, my family decided we would go to Brazil to spend Christmas and New Year's with my mom's side of the family. This would be the first time I'd celebrate a major holiday outside the US, but lucky for me I never felt away from home. I have been traveling off and on to Brazil for a long time and every time I go back, it feels like I'm resuming a second life.
I was too jet lagged (and slightly sick) to take photos during Christmas, but for New Year's my family rented a large ranch in the country for four days and I had plenty of time to swim, nap, drink and get my feet muddy on the volleyball court. On New Year's Eve, we all donned white and covered ourselves in neon paint. I can't say I know many families that throw their own raves, but I'm glad I'm part of one.
We watched the countdown on the screen of someone's iPad and at midnight, fireworks from the neighboring ranches lit up all around us. The dogs were barking at the sky as we jumped from person to person, wishing each other a happy new year.
Our days at the ranch were filled with barbecues, sunbathing, and music provided by my uncle/resident DJ. We had no Wi-Fi and nowhere to be. I can't think of a better way to have spent the first days of a new year, surrounded by good food and silly people. (Below you'll see my brother's attempt at fishing in the backyard river. He caught a leaf.)
A big obrigada to these wonderful people for making this holiday so special.