Thursday, March 31, 2011

our first Ethiopian Meal

I tried my hand at our first Ethiopian dishes this past weekend. It was an adventure for sure.

I have a huge amount of respect for all those Ethiopian moms out there - Ethiopian cuisine can be time-intensive (or maybe it was just my dish?). I have to say it definately gave me a greater empathy as I think of an adoptive child coming over to the US for the first time.

The herbs had a totally new smell to them, the food a different taste, and can I say? At times it was uncomfortable and unpleasant to me. I can't imagine that huge change on top of so many others at once. Definiately makes it seem worthwhile for me to have our family learn an appreciation and familiarity with the cuisine. . . .even if it takes a little bit. : )

We invited Aunt Callie over to try it out with us.
We started small. : ) I made Dora Wat (a traditional chicken stew) and Himbasha Bread (a "sweet" honey bread. Think more herb than sweet).
You can find the recipes here.

The girls were so excited.

Want the proof?

Here's Ava joyfully partaking.

And Kate.

I think Olivia was happy because the food wasn't in her mouth. : )

My other diners?

Aunt Callie seems excited - doesn't she?!
We won't mention that the bread returned to her plate when the camera went away WITHOUT a second bite taken. Whoops. Guess I mentioned it. : )
9 times out of 10, I'm the more adventurous eater of Ryan and I. So I thought for sure Ryan wouldn't be a big fan of what I had made and that I would do ok.
That whole "pride goes before the fall" thing? Totally true.
I struggled.
There's a lot of spice to Ethiopian food and I'm going to need to start off milder (I had even thought I'd cut the spice down).
Ryan? He ate 3 pieces of the chicken.
At least our child will have Dad to eat meals with. I'm working on it, I promise.
But no worries. Our girls didn't starve.
We ended the meal with good old American desserts.
Ice cream cones for the kids.

And strawberry pie for us from the Mennonite Relief Sale.

Until the next time . . .

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

an award?

Ava came home from preschool the other day with an award!

I was praising her for it as I pulled it out and she was so excited.

And then I looked a little closer.

Apparently, playing with Barbies is an unusual skill these days that my daughter excells at.
Although her self-portrait is pretty good. : )

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

oh the irony

About a month ago, out of nowhere, Kate started a new little tradition for herself.

She'd come find us, tell us she needed her diaper changed, and proceed to go lay down and wait with a book. She then reads as we change her diaper.

There's a few of you out there who will find this especially funny.
I'll let you stay unnamed. : )

Monday, March 28, 2011

Birthday Party!

We celebrated the girls' birthday the weekend after with Ryan's family. It was a "Minnie Mouse" extravaganza.

Our sick girl finally with a smile on her face
Kate was most definatly feeling better : ) It was so funny to see them back in their high chairs but we needed their seats.

The yummy Minnie birthday cake

Ready to celebrate with everyone

Kate LOVES strawberries. Anytime someone would leave their seat for something, she'd RUN to their plate and start stuffing their strawberries in her mouth as fast as she could. Here she is gleefully eating Daddy's strawberries.

Cake time!
Kate's turn to blow out the candle

Olivia needed some extra encouragement

Olivia and Mommy

I think Kate looks so old in this picture

Ahh, it's the candid moments - right? Here's Aunt Callie, Uncle David and Aunt Tara trying to rescue the lost balloon. No such luck.

We played "Pin the flower on Minnie." The girls had a ball.
Kate's turn
Olivia's turn

And I was so busy laughing as I videotaped all the adults play, that I didn't take a SINGLE picture (I'm sure they are all SO sad). But what I did get was Kate and Olivia entranced while watching the adults take their turns blindfolded. : )

Then time for presents!
Olivia playing with the little dogs from Uncle David and Aunt Tara

Opening their present from Gpa and Gma

Yay! Now we have two trikes to ride around this summer

And of course, we had to take time to read the cards people write.

It was a great day . . .until Olivia started puking again that night at midnight. : )
Happy Birthday my 2 yr olds!

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Our next door neighbors happened to win 4 Barney Live tickets. For some reason, her two children (high school and jr-high ages) weren't interested in going : ) and they generously gave them to us! Ava was thrilled. She got to invite a friend and it was a girls' night out!

Ava and Annika all ready for the night to began (cotton candy and all)

I happen to think this little girl is a lot of fun.

Barney in action

It was pretty exciting.

It was a fun night out with the girls

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

apparently the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree

My girls seem to all be night owls given the chance.

On this occasion?

3/1/11 10:21 pm

I think Daddy looks more tired than Olivia.

When dinner isn't soon enough . . .

my peanut butter lover get resourceful.

Birthday "Fun" - Part One

Kate and Olivia got to celebrate their birthday a little early when my mom came into town for a couple days. They were quite excited.

Waiting for Grandma to come - look like trouble, don't they?! : )
Excited to open their presents

Checking out their new dolls

Kate was very excited about new doll accessories

And Olivia? I think she was just excited. She had no idea what to do with the walkie-talkies, but Ava had fun using them with Daddy!

The morning of their birthday we had their streamers up and the fun ready and waiting.

Except Kate and Olivia missed the memo about birthdays being fun (in all fairness, they were sick : ) )

Checking out their balloons

They were thrilled. Really.

well, Ava was excited about it all!

Here's Ava reading Kate her birthday card she colored for her as Kate opens her present.
Again, notice the enthusiasm.

Olivia livened up at the sight of new flip-flops

Candles in a cinnamon twist.
Happy Birthday Olivia!

Happy Birthday Kate!

And with that, we were having so much fun, I made us take a break.