Balanced Melting Pot

Archive for the ‘Thoughts’ Category

You’re moving where?

In Caracas, Expat, Parenting, Questions, Thoughts, Update on November 9, 2009 at 12:20 pm

So, every time I tell people that I’m moving to Caracas, I tend to get the same list of questions. Sensing a reoccurring theme with these inquiries, I have decided to post them with the answers below.

Q. Is this a good thing?

A. Yes, it’s a very good thing. My husband has received a great promotion – one for which he has worked hard.

Q. Do you speak Spanish?

A. No, but my husband does and he makes a great tour guide ;-).

Q. Why Venezuela?

A. That’s where hubby wanted to go and it’s not so far fetched – there are strong historical ties with Haiti.

Q. What are you going to do there?

A. Learn Spanish, help the kids get adapted, learn the culture, eventually find a position with an NGO, and of course – write on this blog :-D.

Q. For how long will you be there?

A. Not sure. We are planning on five years, but I have learned to be flexible with our plans because ya never know.

Q. Are the kids excited?

A. Well, my two year-old has no clue. But my daughter (7 years-old) is very happy about the opportunity to learn Spanish.

That’s all I got for now. Let me know if you have one that’s not listed and I will gladly answer.

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Boy, have times changed!

In Cultural Expectations, Culture, Immigrant Families, Parenting, Questions, Thoughts on June 22, 2009 at 11:35 am

My mother recently asked that I send my six year-old daughter to spend the summer with her in Haiti. Now, this is a huge request under any circumstances, as I have not yet become comfortable with extended separation from my children (I’m told it gets easier with time). But, knowing how much she misses her grandmother, I gave the request a lot of consideration.

I know that spending the summers in Haiti growing up helped keep my connection to a place that I could have easily forgotten. If not for those summers, I would have missed out on time spent with my family members; some of whom are no longer with us. Those summers also taught me a great deal about the culture and social norms.

So, of course, I began thinking that a summer there would provide the same benefits to my daughter. Then it hit me – things are not like they were when I was a child (this is a phrase I told my mother I would never say because it always sounded close-minded coming from her :-o).

For instance, children no longer play the skillful games of osle or marbles. They no longer get dressed up on Sunday afternoons – just because. They also don’t jump rope at night when it was just the right temperature. Instead, afternoon games have been replaced with telenovelas and music videos. And Sundays, well they’re just Sundays.

So, indeed, times they are a changin! Can you relate to this, or am I getting old :-)? Am I wrong to lack enthusiasm over exposing my daughter to the evolved culture just because it’s different from my experience?

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Spring Cleaning

In Blog Pulse, Thoughts on May 4, 2009 at 11:18 am

I have updated the look and layout of Balanced Melting Pot. I think this design works well for the season. Let me know your thoughts.

Also, check out the new polls! Who says voting should be limited to elections and American Idol 😉

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