Feliz 2012! 2011, We Had a Great Ride...

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I know these year reflection posts can be super tacky, but I have to put into writing what 2011 brought me and share some of the experiences I had throughout the year. So here's another story in photos that I know you all love!

Dear 2011,

There is no way to thank you enough for the year you've given me. There were many firsts, many reencounters, new friends, fabulous family moments, and travel throughout Brazil. How could a girl ask for more?

I mean, you started off low key. With a small get together of close friends chez moi 

But of course, this was because I had already planned on a pricey and fabulous Carnaval in Pernambuco. Which was a success!

 I danced on the hills of Olinda 

Watched shows in downtown Recife, and swam in its warm beaches

And went scuba diving for the first time ever, in Porto de Galinhas!

Still, who would have known the rest of the year would have been so fantastic and exciting after this?

Twice in one month, I saw two of my favorite bands live!!

U2 in early April for the first time

And The Roots (feat. John Legend) for the 4th time in late April with a newly found soul crew

(I also saw RHCP, but don't have pictures to prove it!)

Easter was spent on my friend's father's farm, where I rode a horse, and where the clouds look like cartoon clouds...

And was surrounded by some of my favorites, and new friends altogether 

I learned rodeios can be fun when you're surrounded by a fun crowd (decked in plaid)

I also learned that despite sucking, I love playing soccer. And have done so on the beach. With the boys!

Towards the middle of the year, I felt like I needed something new. Maybe I was lacking travel, or felt blah because of the blah weather. So for the first time, I put some (tiny bit of) artificial color into my hair.

My favorite time of the year in Brazil, and when I lived in the US, was June, because of Festas Juninas, where we all get to dress up all "country", dance around a fire, make up silly choreography to a fake wedding, and eat lots of paçoca, and drink lots of vinho quente. 

This year, I got to be the funny pregnant bride

and everyone was there!

In July, I made plans to take my vacation time to visit family and old friends.

I spent a weeked in historic Ouro Preto and rural Luz, Minas Gerais, with my college friend who'd recently returned to Brazil...

Gui :-)

Then I ventured to my hometown for some family loving, and to see my beautiful cousin tying the knot

After that, I spent a week in Espírito Santo, visiting my best friends' parents whom I hadn't seen in over 10 years

And touring around the Vitória area with my cousin Michely

I visited for the first time, our nation's capital in late August...

with my lovely roommate...

and there, stayed with my fabulous ex-roommate and her husband - the perfect Brasília tour guides

My girl friends and I scored cheap tickets to Belho Horizonte in early October, and made a trip to Inhotim, museum/botanical gardens out of it

And since I couldn't get enough Niemeyer, we played tourists in BH too.

I partied a lot with my friends in São Paulo too!

I quit my job to open a new business with my already partner in crime (details to come soon)


And until we start making money with the business, I'm consulting part time with a great group of professionals (who know their karaoke & tequila almost as well as digital marketing)

Last, but certainly not least... you brought me my parents...

who I hadn't seen in nearly four years, for Christmas. 

This was by far the biggest present I've ever gotten on Christmas, never mind in 2011! :-)

And then helped me ring in 2012 surrounded by great friends, and my little brother, in Rio.

Hope this small year in review was enough thanks to you. But to my friends and family who helped me make this year one of the best yet, thank you for being there for me. Or as my friend Ana aptly put at midnight this past Saturday night "Thank you for coming into my life. I love you"

2012. Bring it on. You have BIG shoes to fill!


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