Living Off-Grid: Not Just for Hippies

There are many things I do intentionally in life, such as quitting a job I love in NYC to travel the world with Francois and relocate to Portugal to build a life I love even more. Or opening a bottle of wine on a Tuesday night, just because. Living off-grid? Not so much. It happened […]

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We bought land! Now What?

Almost a year. That’s how long it took us from the moment we first saw the property we fell in love with to the moment we signed the papers that made us its official new owners. Well, 11 months to be exact. Ten, maybe, if you count from the moment we decided we wanted to […]

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Learning from Pain (and Puppies)

Last night, we had our first puppy crisis. If you recall, life with Mojito is pretty wonderful – he’s curious, clever, clumsy, adventurous, and full of energy. Although I’ll never understand quite how it happened, the puppy got his leg stuck between the last step of the tiny house we live in and the tiny […]

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A Day in the Life

From recent conversations with friends, it has become clear that many of you wonder what in the world we are doing, not big picture but on a daily basis. So, here’s a taste of what a Cramooz day sort of looks like-ish… Ever since the arrival of “Mojito the mutt” – our adorable puppy born […]

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Recipe: Kiwi-ginger jam

The kiwis had been sitting in their crates for weeks, freshly picked off the wooden structure the male and female plants grow on right as 2018 slowly turned the corner and settled in. We tried to make a dent in the harvest by eating kiwis for breakfast, as snacks, and by taking bags of them […]

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A Double New Years Celebration to Ring in 2018

While I am not one to swoon over epic plans for December 31st, I have to say that if you are hell-bent on bringing the New Year in with style, the best way I have found to do that is twice within an hour, traveling between Spain and Portugal. First, a disclaimer: if it were […]

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On Learning Portuguese

Or why you should learn the language when you move somewhere. Aside from not quite understanding why anyone would move to a foreign country and not make the effort to learn the language, in Portugal my experience suggests that depending on other people’s grasp of the English language may not be your best bet. This […]

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The Olive Harvest

When we agreed to participate in the Vinha da Manta olive harvest, my mind conjured bucolic images of a team of volunteers bundled up in the cold November mornings but stripping down to t-shirts as we worked in the warm sun throughout the day, shaking down olive trees and gathering the fruit they delivered on […]

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The 7 Stages of Bureaucracy

Portugal is an amazing place, and there are many, many reasons why we chose to relocate here. However, I would be crazy if I said it was perfect, and delusional if I did not mention the biggest challenge we have had to deal with: bureaucracy. We knew this going in, of course, and accepted it […]

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