a little history lesson

Back in 2008, when Paul and I found ourselves trying to regain our footing as new expats in a  huge Brazilian city, Paul began writing our first blog Sao Paulo is for Lovers?.

So many pieces of our life back then are packed into that sentence-

Paul began the blog? Brand new expats? Sao Paulo?

Even the question mark at the end of the blog title is a give away for where we were at that time. A young family, Noah and Sophie were only 4 and 2 at the time, who sold everything and moved to the one place we said we weren’t willing to live-South America. We had so many questions and doubts about where we were in the moment, and the blog provided an easy way to keep in touch with family and friends. It reassured them that we were okay and was an easy way to share gratuitous pictures of the grand children.

When we moved to India three years later, it seemed only natural that we would keep up with a blog and Mangoes + Monsoons was born. Paul had long retired his role of contributor to the blog, and what had started as a glorified photo album of our lives began to develop, I hope, some depth to what it means to raise a family overseas, find multiple definitions of home, and try and gain perspective on mundane daily living.

By December of last year we knew another move was in the future. After much angst about where our next stop would be we accepted jobs at an American school in Doha, Qatar. I knew that the blog needed to cast a wider net-the only mangoes on the horizon were the imported ones at the supermarket and there were more sandstorms than monsoons in the forecast. I spent the better part of six months kicking around different ideas for our next blog with nothing feeling quite right.

Late last night, as I washed my face, brushed my teeth, and waded through the mental chatter from the day, it came to me. Roots and Wings. That expression has resonated with me for a while-I have a small tattoo on my wrist based on the same phrase-and seems to fit where we are as an expat family, my perspective as a mom of young children, and the balance I strive to find in my own life. It’s always roots and wings, wings and roots.

So cheers to the next phase of our life and the common thread of always attempting to cultivate the two things we all need most, roots and wings.


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