Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Comfy Hammocks, Big Fish, and Wormy Dogs

We were planning to go camping this weekend. But somehow that never happened and instead we ended up out at a sítio outside of Belo Horizonte on Saturday and in Sete Lagoas at a fazenda on Sunday.

Lots of people in Belo Horizonte have a little country weekend house, or sítio, outside of the city. One of my adult students invited Eric and me, along with some of her classmates and one of the other teachers out to the sítio that she and her husband own. Eric and I got out there around lunchtime on Saturday and were greeted with lots of yummy food: beef, chicken, rice, beans, cheesy potatoes, salad. We stuck around until past 10:00 when we finally convinced everyone to let us leave (everyone else came prepared to stay the night, but we hadn't). Not wanting to show up empty handed, but unsure as to what to take, I made a huge pan of brownies which everyone started off eating very hesitantly, but by the end of the night they invited us to come back anytime, and encouraged me to bring brownies again. That seems to be how it goes anytime I offer some of my "American" baking; everyone looks at it strange, has lots of questions, takes a itty bitty bite and hesitantly tries it, and I can't figure out if they are eating it out of politeness or if they actually like it. And then before I know it, the whole plate/pan/or whatever has disappeared. :)

Eric got word Thursday afternoon that he needed to be in Sete Lagoas (a city a little over an hour away from BH) for a meeting first thing Monday morning. Since yesterday and today are holidays for me and the language school is closed, we decided to go up Sunday morning and stay the night in Sete Lagoas. There is a place outside of the city that is pretty well known, Solar do Engenho, which is a hotel set on 500 acres in the country with horseback riding, fishing, and other outdoor activities. All the structures, furniture, etc. are built from demolition wood and made to look like something from the 1700's, but with modern comfort. It made for a totally relaxing Sunday! (And it sure didn't hurt that the first thing they asked us when we arrived is if we wanted massages . . . um, that would be a yes! It was going to be hard to have a bad time after starting our day off with massages!)

Looking back at the hotel and one of the ponds

Picture taken of the pool and swim-in sauna (what an awesome idea!) from the hotel's gigantic front porch

Our room wasn't too shabby either! It was very rustic but incredibly comfortable! We had the best Sunday afternoon nap ever in our in-room hammock (and I am quite the connoisseur of naps these days!)

I might have gotten spoiled with a nice relaxing bubble bath Sunday night too.

And to go with the "rustic" theme, they had the most awesome sink and gorgeous old wood everywhere.

We went down Sunday afternoon, prior to our nap, to the ponds and thought we'd do a little fishing. Eric was encouraged to see this guy wrangle in this hugamongous fish just as we were walking up.

So I got a little cane pole and Eric went for the real fishing pole and off we went. I got two fish, that weren't exactly record-breakers or anything.
But Eric got skunked and didn't catch anything except for a hard time from his wife about her superior fishing skills.
And what is that he is using for bait you ask? Only the best, my dear friend.
Yes, that would be a hot dog. All the big fish were being caught with hot dogs (and given that your choice of bait was hotdogs or these little pieces of fish food that looked like dog food . . .) And yes, those would be spaghetti noodles in said hotdog. You had to split the sausage to get it on the hook/line and then use little pieces of noodles to hold it all on there. It was quite the different experience from our usual crickets or worms or liver or minnows that we usually use as bait back home!

But meanwhile, I got the best food idea for a kids' Halloween party: "Wormy Dogs", push spaghetti noodles though hotdogs prior to boiling them so that you have these little worms dangling from the hotdog. How awesomely gross would that be? See, I'm going to be great at this whole "mom thing". ;)

Eric got up Monday morning and went to his meeting and I got to crawl back in bed after having breakfast with him, which was quite heavenly given my usual 7:30 am class routine these days.


cherie said...

Next time you take baked goods, take some of those incredible chocolate chip/peanut butter cookies. I still dream about them.

Ray Adkins said...


What a great relaxing weekend! We loved those "Hotel Fazenda" they have in Sao Paulo...
I am sure they must have some pretty great ones in Minas as well.
Talking about food, you mentioned the big avocados from Brazil that you are used to nowadays, just so you know, the large avocados are taking over the US grocery stores, they are all from the Homestead area of south Florida and they are being marketed as Lite Avocados, supposed to have 35% less fat and 35% of the calories of regular "California small" avocados...
I wonder if the Brazilian avocados are "Light" avocados like the ones from Florida.


Amanda said...

You know, you have to start the belly pose NOW so we can all see how big Z baby (still coolest name ever for an unborn child!)is growing every month!
Glad y'all are squeezing in some last minute relaxing weekends!!

Justin said...

Okay, Cherie's comment has piqued my curiosity. What's your recipe for chocalate chip-peanut butter cookies?

Emily said...

Cherie, oh, yum, I haven't made those in a long time. Great idea! :)

Ray, I'm going to go with yes, Brasilian avacados are healthier. (This way I can feel less guilty about my guac habit!)

Amanda, great minds think alike!

Justin, oh, now, you've had those before. They were the ones I made one day when I couldn't decide if I wanted chocolate chip, peanut butter, or oatmeal cookies. So I ended up creating a 3-in-1 recipe and they ended up being pretty dang good. I'll email you the recipe because it formats pretty ugly here in the comment section.

AcesHigh said...

Talking about avocados, I once heard that Hawaiaan pineapples were the sweetest ones... what are you guys thoughts about brazilian pineapples?