The hardest part of being an expat…

expat blog

It’s my mother’s birthday today and I am over 4,000 miles away in the Southwest of England, sitting in the bedroom that is mine and my husband’s and wishing that for one day I had the ability to teletransport to Florida to be with my mother on this new milestone in her life. I don’t think I ever fully understood or grasped the difficulty of my own parents’ expatriation from their own country and their family ties and connections until I was finally granted my spouse visa and residence permit to reside here in the UK. I have been here a little over 6 months now and the hardest part for me is not having my parents or siblings nearby to just see, talk to or spend time with. I am fortunate enough to have some family here, mainly all of my husband’s immediate family and many relatives nearby. My own mother and father only had each other when they moved from Venezuela over 35 years ago to the US and though many friends helped them out and became like family, their own parents and siblings were all mostly still so far away.

I think I can now comprehend how my parents felt, in particular my mom, when they could not be with their own family and loved ones on birthdays and such. It’s one of the consequences of choosing to live abroad, elsewhere away from home–bittersweet really. Still, I am grateful that technology has come so far in the recent decades that we can now spend time with our loved ones virtually in real time even if we are not physically there. It is even a blessing that my parents at least got to do the same with both of my grandmothers before they passed away. The joy on my little old ladies’ faces when they saw their children and, even their grandchildren and great-grandchildren on some occasions, is enough to warm your heart at the thought that in the best sense technology has brought us all closer together when before you had to wait weeks to find out how a person had spent their birthday when the telephone hadn’t yet been invented. We have come a long way and our sense of belonging to our little familiar tribes has had a great aid in these technological advances.

Still, it is hard not to be physically present, to be able to hug my mom on her birthday or to bake her a cake and watch her blow out the candles. I guess I understand a little better these days the saying “you can’t have your cake and eat it too”. We worked so hard to get me over here to the UK, it was my all-consuming thought last year to now feel sad that I can’t be in the US with my family whenever I want. That is the give and take aspect of life, isn’t it? I am sure that many of my readers will be able to understand this to some degree whether they are expats or not.

family expat life mom birthday

So, while as expats we may not always have our family right down the road, or the same can be said for living in the same country but at long distances, we can say that we always carry them with us in our hearts. Even after they are gone, they are still there with us, still a part of us and when we are able to see them and spend time with them in person it is all the sweeter.

Happy Birthday, Mom! I miss you lots and really wish I could be there in Florida to celebrate with you but I know you know you are loved, cherished and treasured.


Nadia xoxo


The title photo for this post is one I took while in Scotland. More about that soon!

Another May baby, my friend Kiki, celebrated the Queen’s 90th last month in style at the Ballantyne in the US. Check her post out here.

My latest travel buddy and partner in crime, Bekah, has added a new pasta recipe to her blog.

Just discovered this blog, Gingerlillytea, and OMG…such beautiful photos!


Cake and Cards: My Mom’s Birthday yesterday. 

Yesterday was my mom’s birthday and I believe she had a very nice time of it. Relaxing day and very congratulated. I’m glad I was here for it as for her past two birthdays, as with Mother’s Day, I’d been away on travels in Europe. I baked a lovely Lemon Chiffon Cake yesterday using a recipe I found on Cake Journal and decorated it with strawberries all around. 


Everyone loved it! Even our friends from Thailand who dropped by in the evening enjoyed it and they’re not much for sweets usually. My mother got several beautiful cards for both Mother’s Day & her birthday plus my hubby and I got her some flowers which were delivered yesterday while I was baking the cake. 

My beautiful mom above with the roses we got her. What sorts of things do you do for your mom on her birthday? 

Links from the blogosphere:

Where is My Mind:

Blogger Mumma:

Bug, Bird and Bee:

Life, Blogging and Autumn…


Seems that life took over in August and kept me busy all through September and now, as I am on the threshold of returning to the US after a lovely six month visit to my husband in the UK, I find myself relishing for time to do all the things I didn’t get to do with little chance of actually being able to do it. Even so, this does not mean that I haven’t accomplished much in the time I have been here. I’ve been able to expand my creative mind, meet loads of wonderful people and find a sense of belonging in a community I have come to love as my own, I’ve enjoyed long walks around hillsides that I shall miss until I can return again, seen places I never in my life imagined I’d see and best of all have had a beautiful time with my husband.

Life has been lovely here and as I prepare to go to NY to see my nieces before making my way back to Florida in November I couldn’t be more grateful for the time I have spent here. Even in the world of social media I have had success on the Walks in Beauty Facebook page, joined a blogging tribe which has been a great confidence booster and I hope that the ladies in the tribe know just how privileged I feel to be among them, and have had a great response on my Instagram accounts as well.

I was fortunate enough to get out to Dorchester with Alan last Sunday to see the turning of the leaves in autumn and it did not disappoint! It was all very lovely and I look forward to sharing some of the photos with you.

I’d like to take a moment though to share the importance of having a sense of belonging and how the blogging tribe has aided in that for me. My friend Fiona of Dolly Dowsie, a very popular Irish Beauty and Mommy Lifestyle blog, created the tribe so that several of us could have a bit of a blogging support group where we could share our posts and give each other daily feedback. I think it is both a great idea and a wonderful blessing for those of us involved. As with all things, though, involvement can sometimes wane and life gets in the way of keeping up with everything all at once. Still, I think it is a brilliant way of connecting with other bloggers and encouraging each other in our endeavours.

I’ve had the pleasure of reading several posts by Aly Hodge of Bug, Bird, & Bee, I really like her originality. I’ve also had the chance to get acquainted with several other blogs; Blogger Mumma has a really cute blog, Four Walls, Rainy Days has a lot of interesting reads, The Mini Mes and And Me is quite fun, and a recent newcomer to the tribe, Kiki Nakita harkens to our sense of nostalgia, home life and a lovely collection of photos and memories. There are quite a few more and I hope to often share more links to the other bloggers in our tribe’s blogs as the days, weeks, and months go by. Have a browse, enjoy their pert opinions and life views and leave a comment to let them know you stopped by. After all, it’s nice to know that people appreciate the time we put into our blogs when you leave a comment.

I hope you’re all having a beautiful week and getting geared up for the weekend!



Nadia xo