Wednesday, May 31

#17 My College Graduation ♥

5º mês - Bodas de Chocolate
One of the happiest days of my life so far, besides my wedding days, was the day that I graduated from college in the USA!
Because I had a student visa (F1), I had to study and because colleges here are pretty expensive, I chose a community college, where you can go for the first 2 years and get an associate degree, and then transfer to a regular college to finish your bachelor.
I had already been to college in Brazil, so I didn't need to transfer and continue to study more... these 2 years were enough for me. I was actually out of the F1 status on my last semester, so I didn't really need to be studying anymore, but since I only had one semester left, I thought "I might as well finish it!"
When I was an au pair, I went to Westchester Community College for ESL courses, so I was already very familiar with the campus and their programs, but all of my last 5 semesters there were of a lot of hard work and now that this came to an end, I couldn't be more proud of myself... for remembering that 5 years ago I wasn't able to put a simple sentence in English together! #practicemakesperfect
I am also very proud of my best friend Andressa, who graduated on the same day as me:) She went to Bergen Community College in New Jersey and her commencement was at MetLife Stadium in the morning, so I got to go and watch her being called as one of the very first ones - as she was an honor student! - to receive her diploma. At night, she went to mine with Mike and Donna. At the end, we took some pictures to register this important step we both took in our new country:) #congratsclassof17

Sunday, April 30

#16 Hubby + Wifey ♥

4º mês - Bodas de Pipoca
No quarto mês nós deixamos de ser "recém-casados" ou Newlyweds, como dizemos em inglês:) 

Esse mês o Mike fez 28 anos (pois é, sou 1 ano e quase 4 meses mais velha que ele) e mês que vem fará 5 anos que a gente se conhece!!! Só de pensar que nós vamos envelhecer juntos, sempre um ao lado do outro, cuidando e fazendo companhia... Eu não poderia estar mais feliz com o marido que tenho! O Mike move montanhas para me agradar e eu tento sempre retribuir com o mesmo romantismo. As pessoas nos perguntam "como anda a vida de casados?" infelizmente nós ainda não estamos morando juntos todos os dias :( Como o Mike trabalha em New Jersey e eu trabalho e estudo em New York, nosso apartamento, onde temos morado há 1 ano e meio fica em NY e a empresa dele providenciou um apartamento para o Mike em NJ. Então, ele vem pra NY nos fins de semana (e nas quintas para o jogo de softball dele:) Eu ainda não tive tempo de ir conhecer onde ele mora... fica à 2 horas daqui! Mas a parte "boa" de passarmos a semana longe um do outro, é que contamos os dias para nos vermos e sentimos aquela saudadinha ^^ 
Outra coisa que eu amo sobre o Mike é que ele sempre topa todos os meus planos e ideias! Desde que me mudei para os EUA, eu sempre quis ir passar a virada do ano na Times Square e esse ano tive essa oportunidade! E graças ao Mike que nos reservou um hotel bem pertinho de onde fica a famosa "bola que cai" à meia-noite, nós tivemos um "guest pass" e não precisamos enfrentar a multidão e passar o dia inteiro esperando (como muita gente faz!). Nós fomos para a rua umas 5 horas antes para curtir os shows e atrações que passam na TV - e eu até apareci na TV!! Foi lindo demais, definitivamente algo para se fazer pelo menos uma vez na vida! E no dia seguinte, 01/01, passeamos por NYC antes de voltar pra casa... qual será a nossa próxima aventura?!

Friday, March 31

#15 My Green Card ♥

3º mês - Bodas de Algodão Doce
Mike and I got married technically 3 times!!! Because besides the weddings in Brazil and in NY we also had our very informal civil ceremony at the court house in Chappaqua. Everyone knows that only getting married doesn't give you a green card, you have to apply for it and it isn't an easy process. When our marriage certificate was ready, I went and updated my major documents with my new last name and registered our marriage at the Brazilian embassy. I then, went on the USCIS website and downloaded all the forms that have to be filled out. Some of them were only for me, some were only for Mike and one of them was a medical form so I had to go see a doctor to take the TB test. When we were done filling out all the forms, I put together copies of all the documents asked (everything that shows our both names together) and I added some extra evidences such as congratulation cards, flight tickets and lots and lots of pictures (I made collages and dated them by events and I printed the pages black & white on regular white paper). Finally, when everything was ready to be sent, we wrote the checks (I think it costed us almost U$2,000 with everything) and mailed the big package! Less than a week after, I received a "Notice of Action", a confirmation that the immigration had received my package and was working on my case. Then, I got a letter with an appointment for my "Biometrics", where I went to have my fingers printed and to take a photo for my green card. I went to Port Chester for this and had a great experience, treated with care and attention:) Our last step was receiving the letter with the appointment for the interview and then going to the interview! (Some people receive in between a card with "advance parole" and "work permission" but for some reason, I didn't). Our interview started when the man asked for us to promise to tell the truth nothing but the truth... and then he looked down at our papers on his desk and said, "Oh okay, you are the couple with thousands of pictures!" 
Mike looked at me with a smile and said, "Yeah, this girl LOVES pictures." The man looked at us and simply said, "Ok, you guys can go, you will get your Permanent Resident Card on the mail shortly". So, this means that WE NEVER ACTUALLY HAD AN INTERVIEW Lol And he was right, my Green Card came in the mail exact a week after! (and it is actually GREEN:) In total, my process took almost 5 months, not so bad! A big THANKS to my friend Deborah who helped us with so many tips for this process:*

Tuesday, February 28

#14 Our Love and Thanks ♥

2º mês - Bodas de Sorvete
Esse post é para agradecermos à cada um que fez o nosso dia acontecer! x2

Começando pelas nossas famílias e os nossos convidados, que foram escolhidos à dedo por serem muito especiais e realmente fazerem parte das nossas vidas! Muito obrigada por terem compartilhado o nosso momento mais importante até hoje (e pelos presentes $ também!:)

Madrinhas e Padrinhos, vocês foram com certeza, a nossa melhor escolha. Obrigada por tudo, mas principalmente pela PACIÊNCIA e dedicação

E lógico, não podemos deixar de agradecer àqueles que planejaram com a gente e depois fizeram seus trabalhos com muito carinho e perfeição!

Mas afinal, quanto custa casar? Muita gente tem me perguntado isso ultimamente, então resolvi compartilhar também nesse post os orçamentos dos nossos casamentos:) Barato não é. Mas vale muito a pena e não me arrependo nenhum pouco! (Do you Mike? Lol)

Vamos aos números do Brasil, em reais, já que não me assustava tanto porque convertia pelos nossos dólares:)

Cerimônia R$550
Flores da Igreja R$1.300
Músicos da Igreja R$800
Salão Social + Buffet R$11.500 (para 60 pessoas)
Decoração da festa R$3.500
DJ & iluminação R$1.800
Foto & Video + bolo fake R$4.500
Limousine R$850

Somando os orçamentos acima, da um total de quase R$25.000 (U$8,000) e ainda não está incluso o dia do Noivo e da Noiva e o vestido, terno, alianças etc... (e as passagens aéreas de NY pra SP!)

Falando nele, meu vestido custou U$4,400, mas eu o usei nos 2 casamentos... Já o Mike, pagou U$750 no suit que usou no BR e U$250 no aluguel do Tuxedo que usou no daqui (mais os sapatos dele - eu usei um que já tinha:) As nossas alianças custaram U$930.

Agora os gastos de NY:

Venue U$17,500 (para 170 pessoas)
Florist U$2,260
DJ U$2,680
Photo & Video U$2,260
Limo U$600
Invitation U$320

Essa soma da mais de U$25,500... ainda não incluso cabelo, makeup, haircut etc e as gorjetas que se tem que dar por aqui. Ou seja, somando TUDO entre os 2 Grande Dias, gastamos uns U$40,000 - fora a Lua de Mel que nos custou quase U$4,000... ai ai melhor parar de somar neh!

Resumindo, casar é caro. Mas fica a dica para quem mora aqui nos EUA de se casar no Brasil. Se tivéssemos tido todos os convidados dos 2 casamentos juntos em um só no Brasil, teríamos gastado menos que a metade do que gastamos no total. O difícil é reunir as 2 famílias e amigos em um país só em uma mesma data... Eu diria que é uma missão impossível haha

O melhor é PLANEJAR. Pesquisar, ir com calma e aos poucos:) Nós não fizemos nenhuma dívida, pagamos tudo antes e agora estamos correndo atrás de recuperar a nossa poupança, afinal nosso próximo Big Step será comprar a nossa Casa Própria para construirmos a nossa Family!

Tuesday, January 31

#13 Our Honeymoon ♥

1º mês - Bodas de Beijinho
We left for our "Lua de Mel" on a Monday after our second wedding and our
destination was the fun: CANCUN, Mexico!
We booked our trip  on the cheap caribbean website and we very much recommend it. We stayed at  Hotel Riu Palace Las Americas, a beachfront - adults only! all-inclusive resort!
Because it was our honeymoon, as soon as we got in our room, we were welcomed with chocolate strawberries, champagne and a cute note:)
After dinner, we went exploring...
The next day, we went on a tour to visit one of the 7 wonders of the world: the Chichen Itza, an incredible Mayan pyramid! The tour also took us to a beautiful Cenote where we jumped in the water from a very high spot!


On Wednesday, it was time to swim with dolphins at Dolphin Discovery on the Isla Mujeres.
An amazing experience!!! After lunch, we went downtown on a golf cart to the cute shops and we visited Playa Norte, a beautiful beach.
We spent Thursday at the Xcaret park, in our opinion, a must go if you're visiting Cancun. This place is huge and it's all about nature and the Mexican culture. There are so many attractions and the food is so good. We added to our day a Snuba dive, it's like snorkeling but all the way down to the bottom of the ocean and your tank stays up floating. We also loved the Paradise lazy river.
We also added to our regular tickets, dinner during the Mexico Espectacular performance, a "show" that happens at night. The musical is awesome and tells the Mexico history and the dinner was our best choice: 7 courses and best seats!
¡Viva Mexico!
Friday was already our last day so we stayed enjoying the gorgeous weather resting at our resort's beach.
At night, we went out to the super famous CocoBongo! Mike had way too much fun with the club's open bar (as you can see from this picture where he holds 3 drinks!). Saturday was the 24th and the day for us to fly back home to celebrate our first Christmas as Diorios