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Easter with a touch of childhood memories.

When I was little Easter was a fun time. I remember following the Easter bunny’s paw prints around the house to find the place where he (you can’t call him it) had hidden my basket. The basket would always have a big chocolate egg. And by that I mean one of those:

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Just a few examples of Easter eggs.

You can find them everywhere in Brazil (yes, I grew up there) and you find them hanging from the ceiling (or a support over your head) in grocery stores. All you have to do is pick the one (or ones) you want and grab them as if you were getting fruit from a tree.

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Easter eggs are expensive, but walking into a supermarket and see all the eggs hanging above your head is priceless.

And if you have never seen the inside of one, they look kind of like this:

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This is a homemade one. Yes, you can get homemade ones and they are simply delicious!

Of course the contents of the eggs differ from one egg to the next, but they are all hollow with candies (and sometimes also toys) inside. The chocolate on the outside of the egg also changes, matching the candy they are based on (some have peanuts mixed with the chocolate, some are white chocolate, etc.).

But they were not the only thing in my basket. There were also smaller eggs and a chocolate bunny. I always got a chocolate bunny. Maybe because when I was little someone stole my bunny, a chocolate one, so my mom decided to give me one every year to compensate. Who knows, the point is, it was magical.

But one thing was even more magical. The decorated egg shells. My mom would start collecting eggshells weeks (maybe months) before Easter  It was a tough job to get them ready. She’d break just a little piece at the bottom of the eggshell, just enough to get the egg out. Then she’d wash the eggshells, let them dry, and store them in an egg carton. Later she’d make sugar peanuts (or Easter peanuts, as we’d call them) and put them inside the eggshells. She’d use a tiny cupcake liner to cover the whole and keep the peanuts inside. Then she’d decorate the shells using watercolors and a paintbrush.

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My mom’s ones had cupcake liners under them instead of egg holders, but they looked just like these ones.

Can we just take a moment to admire the artwork on those? I have to say I admire my mom’s dedication in using a tiny paintbrush to make the tiny details on the eggs. Nowadays with sharpies it would be a much easier job. Yay for that, right?

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Here you can see the peanuts inside and the cupcake liners.

And now I’m a bit nostalgic. Gee, I wonder why, right?

How was Easter for you growing up? What things are part of your fondest memories?

Oh, yeah, and HAPPY EASTER, EVERYONE! Hope the Easter bunny leaves you a bunch of good moments to turn into sweet memories one day.

 

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I have a feeling this will only make sense in my head.

That moment when you forget you had something in the oven so you rush to rescue whatever is left of it, but then you get there and the cheese is overflowing and the chicken is all “Rawwr,” and you’re like “Get over it, chicken. You’re just a chicken,” and you realize how much you miss your mom.

Does this make sense?

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This is the look I was going for, I guess. The actual end result was… well… a bit scarier.

 

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Look! A giant guinea pig!

A day at the zoo with a 4-year-old:

Boy – Look! A giant guinea pig!

Me – Where? (Trying to see what was behind the capybara only to realize that that was the giant guinea pig he was referring to.)

The 120 lb animal now to be known as giant guinea pig.

I guess he’s right, capybaras do look like giant guinea pigs.

I’m not a 2 lb capybara, I swear.

And they are related, so…

 

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Translation: not as easy as it looks

Translation is the process of translating words or text from one language into another. It’s a written or spoken rendering of the meaning of a word, speech, book, or other text, in another language. It sounds pretty simple, right?

But translation is much more than that. It’s not only translating words, but communicating the meaning of a word using an equivalent in another language. Some words are easy, right? Colors, for example. Black will always be black, green will always be green, and blue will always be blue. Right? Not really.

How about feeling blue? The person is not blue per se, but we do associate the color blue with the way the person is feeling. And how about the expression green with envy? You probably can even imagine someone’s face getting green in this case, but is this the same in other languages? How about if you heard someone saying purple with envy? Would that sound right to you? Well, it is the equivalent to green with envy in Portuguese.

Translating a text (any type of text) requires a great deal of knowledge and adaptation. The translator has to adapt the sentence and use the meaning of the words or expressions, not their literal translation. Context is another thing to pay attention to. Have you ever tried to use free online translators? They do help, but unless you have at least some knowledge of both languages, you have to be careful, or you could end up offending someone by accident.

When in doubt, ask for help.

 

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To be a writer

“All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you: the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was. If you can get so that you can give that to people, then you are a writer.”
― Ernest Hemingway

 

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Happy Father’s Day

Today I want to acknowledge a very important person in my life.

The person who was and still is a source of inspiration to me.

The person who thought me that when you fall, because we all do, you get up, shake it off, and keep going.

The person who gave me the tools to create life the way I wanted and to pursue my dreams.

The person who taught me how to navigate through the roads of life with its unexpected turns and twists.

The person who taught me to dance in supermarkets and enjoy life.

The person who is the kind of parent I want to be to my own children one day.

The person whose love and support make me want to be a better person.

Happy Father’s Day, Mom!

Thank you for always being there.

Thank you for all you did and still do.

Thank you for being the kind of person I want to be when I grow up.

 

 

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Focus

“We all need someone to look at us. We can be divided into four categories according to the kind of look we wish to live under. The first category longs for the look of an infinite number of anonymous eyes, in other words, for the look of the public. The second category is made up of people who have a vital need to be looked at by many known eyes. They are the tireless hosts of cocktail parties and dinners. They are happier than the people in the first category, who, when they lose their public, have the feeling that the lights have gone out in the room of their lives. This happens to nearly all of them sooner or later. People in the second category, on the other hand, can always come up with the eyes they need. Then there is the third category, the category of people who need to be constantly before the eyes of the person they love. Their situation is as dangerous as the situation of people in the first category. One day the eyes of their beloved will close, and the room will go dark. And finally there is the fourth category, the rarest, the category of people who live in the imaginary eyes of those who are not present. They are the dreamers.”

– Milan Kundera (The Unbearable Lightness of Being)

 

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