Life with 4 kids 6 and under. Our trip to pick up Tonito in China is: mid-March 2008 through April 12. Our trips to pick up Ricky in Ethiopia are in June and August of 2010.

Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Eve!

New Year's Eve- and we have babysitters!:) We have a tradition in our family of cooking together, so for New Year's we decided to make tamales. The carnivores made shredded chicken with green salsa, and the veggies made sweet potato and apple tamales. We try to get the kids as involved as possible- because it's fun, but because they'll eat whatever we make:).

After our tamale factory, Tonio and I headed off to Tim and Colleen's house to chat the night away. It was the perfect New Year's and we had so much fun reconnecting:).

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A sleepover and Winterfest

We were all so excited to be invited to Tia Anita's house for a sleepover!!! Sam and Nate, with their new batman and Robin costumes, inspired me to look for more boy dress-up clothes for our house. We are set with the princess dresses, feather boas, tutus, jewelry, etc, etc, but we could use some boy costumes!

Tonito loves his cousins so much- I feel fortunate that Annie and I are so close, and that we both happened to adopt from the same area of the world. Tonito really likes to have cousins that "look like" him (his words:).

After the "sweepovah" (as Maya says and Vivi used to say) it was game time with grandma and grandpa.

Look at them posing in front of their art museum (above)! Later we went to the Winterfest at Navy Pier- it was soooo busy, and next year we will go on a weekday before Christmas. Winterfest is a visual overload of twinkling Christmas lights and gaudy garland on steroids, and my kids love it. Besides the outrageous decorations, blaring music, and hordes of people, the best part are the bouncy houses and rides.

We had a bit of a tussle at the Merry-go-round when they let my mom take Maya on, but wouldn't let Ricky on with my dad (they didn't know we were together). They claimed that all adults needed a bracelet (and none of us had any because we weren't going on any rides except to hold the kids when needed). When we questioned why the same person had just let my mom and Maya in, and that Ricky and Maya were the same height and same age, but Ricky wasn't allowed on, it got a little heated. The security guard had to pull Tonio back and bring him to some people in charge so they could explain the discrepancy. In the end they gave Tonio and i free bracelets to ride with the kids and brought us to the front of the line- much to the chargin and dismay of the original worker.

After we were all Winterfested out, we headed to the Ethiopian Diamond Restaurant. Absolutely delicious, with just the right amount of heat. They even have 100% teff injera to order for anyone who is gluten-free!

Ricky loved it and kept saying it was HIS Ethiopian Restaurant, and HIS food.

An amazing day- I love our family!!!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Children's Museum= play, play, play

My kids get extremely excited whenever we mention a "Museo de Niños." Sensory overload, stimulating the 5 senses (well, not taste except for Miss Maevey who still puts things in her mouth:).

Building, playing with wind, bubbles, water:

Discovering how things feel, how different devices work, and how materials react to different forces:

You watch the little kids and can almost hear the little gears in their heads turning, and you wish you could get inside their brains and see what they are pondering:

The best part of this field trip was sharing it with all of our family, and letting the excited kids share their discoveries with them.

Monday, December 27, 2010

20 mile run and gingerbread cookies

So after a week of being sick with bronchitis and a sinus infection, while not sleeping well and eating more than my fair share of Christmas cookies-- Tonio and I ran our longest run we would do before the marathon- the 20 miler. Just to make it more difficult, it was *freezing* cold. The kind that rips through your clothes and literally chills your bones.

When we signed up for the marathon in January, we were thinking "ooh, a winter marathon- sounds like easy training since we'll have a mild Texas winter." We were NOT thinking our longest runs would be in Chicago. This is precisely why people in Chicago run their marathons in the fall, after 5 months of perfect training weather. Whatever, we survived with our breath freezing our masks, the heat escaping our bodies condensing and freezing on our hair and eyelashes. While we were navigating the icy, unshoveled streets, the kids stayed home with Grandma, Grandpa and Tia Susie to do an art project and make gingerbread cookies.

It's funny how our holidays encompass or are symbolized by certain foods. It definitely isn't Christmas without cookies and potica.