Leaving A Mark…

My time in Brazil is rapidly coming to an end! The countdown as of today is 7. That’s right..7 days and I’ll be on a plane back to Canada. I can’t believe how fast the time has gone…and on the other hand I feel like I’ve always been here.

The last couple of weeks I’ve been making sure I “leave a mark” so they don’t forget me! Last week I baked some banana bread (in a cake pan because I didn’t have a loaf pan) and shared it around. The ladies in the kitchen loved it and wanted me to show them how to make it. So one morning I went and we had a little Canadian baking lesson.


Rosane mashing the bananas for me


Whipping it up by hand…great exercise for the arms!


And….SUCCESS! Here at Mount Horebe, they call it bolo de banana or bolo de Janette! “Bolo” is cake in Portuguese…so it’s banana cake or Janette’s cake. Leaving a mark…

I also baked some blonde brownies another day last week. Of course there was no way I was going to eat the whole pan myself…so everyone got to taste them. They aren’t familiar with brownies here…so it was fun trying to explain in my limited Portuguese what they were. Blonde in Portuguese is “loiro” so brownies de loiro (or bolo de loiro, because everything here is bolo!) is what they are called now. As a result of all this….another baking lesson was in order! I translated and wrote out the recipe so they could have it to make when I’m gone. One of the ladies told me, “I will remember you every time I make these!”

While I’ve been here I’ve got to spend a lot of time with the ladies in the kitchen and they’ve become dear friends I’m going to miss seeing every day. Since April I’ve helped wash the dishes after lunch almost every day….and as a result have become very familiar with the words “lava a louça” (wash the dishes). We’ve had many fun times and laughs together…they’ve all left a mark in my life.

I’ve been literally leaving a mark in another way as well…


The new office they created with all the renovations needed to be painted. I really enjoy painting and I figured it was another way I could bless them here at the mission. Well when they discovered I actually could paint and knew what I was doing…they asked if I would paint the whole office! It took me 4 days…but the whole office now has a fresh coat of “Branco neve” (snow white) paint. I found it rather amusing that the Canadian was painting and the color was Snow White. I think it’s safe to say I know a thing or two about snow!


Concentrating hard!

While I was in the process of leaving my mark on the office…I created another masterpiece on my clothes!


Needless to say this “masterpiece” will be finding a garbage can here and won’t be making the trip back to Canada with me!

As I’ve been thinking about this whole idea of leaving a mark…literally and figuratively…my prayer is that my life has made a difference here for good. It’s not always about the things that we do, but the time we take to give of ourselves to others…developing relationships and friendships. I know for a fact Brazil has left a mark on me! The friends I’ve made here are forever in my heart and I’m sure in the next week I will cry lots of tears as I say many goodbyes…but coming back next time will be that much sweeter. I realized a few weeks ago it isn’t only the people who are in my heart, but the Portuguese language is as well. I’m really going to miss hearing it every day! Even as my brain struggles to understand all that is being said…life won’t be the same without it! I have never had such a strong desire to learn a language as I do with Portuguese. I think maybe it’s because I long to be able to communicate more effectively with the people so dear to my heart…both in Mozambique and now here in Brazil. Portuguese has left a mark on my life…and I’m surprised when I think I knew nothing when I came…and to realize how much I understand now. Absolutely wonderful!

Coming back to Canada there are many new footprints that have left a mark in my life and I’m thankful for each one. My life is fuller and richer as a result. I’ve enjoyed so many wonderful moments and opportunities…of course…some of my favorites were making lots of footprints on the beaches of Brazil!

Please keep me in your prayers this coming week…as I say many goodbyes and travel back to Canada. It’s going to be a full emotionally week I’m sure. But when I get back to Canada I look forward to seeing many of you and sharing in person some of the many stories and experiences I’ve enjoyed. And don’t be surprised if you hear the occasional Portuguese word mixed in with my English…it’s already been happening when I’ve been talking to people on Skype!

Just had to end this post with another photo from one of those beautiful beaches I enjoyed making footprints on!


There are 3 comments left Go To Comment

  1. Mom /

    Awesome blog this time! You have a wonderful way of communicating, Janette! Really enjoyed reading your thoughts about this time in your life, and your recent adventures! Love you so much…and look forward to seeing you May 30th!! Mom

  2. Dad /

    Sure great to hear from your heart! So wonderful to hear how you have connected with the people there. Of course we really look forward to seeing you again!

  3. Kelly /

    I cannot believe that you’ve been home for a few days already and I have just now caught up on the last few weeks of your blog! I kept thinking you were going to be for for so long and now your time in Brazil is over! (For now…?). Anyway, I have enjoyed reading your blog and seeing Facebook updates and being able to pray for you. And I said a prayer for you everytime I saw a World Cup ad or promo, which lately has been a lot 🙂 I would see Brasil and I would think Janette, and I would pray. I love that God has used something so simple to help cover you in prayer. Anyway, cant wait to see you again 🙂

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