Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Central Branch

Seattle Public Library Central Branch. Impressions from our first visit: gloomy, cold, dark, dirty, crowded, ugly colors, sickening bum smell, pay for parking, nice collection - especially compared to the neighborhood branches.

Nexus Pass

Here's the big news in our life right now: we got our appointment for our Nexus Pass interview! After our last day trip to BC we decided we'd like to go over the border more often, but we're usually too afraid of getting stuck in one of the long lines to cross over. With the Nexus Pass, we'll be allowed to drive right through in a special lane. I had to fill out an application for each person in our family and get copies of our passports and licenses, pay $50 per adult, and send it in. Our interview is on Monday. Hopefully it'll go fine and we'll walk out with our passes which will be good for the next 5 years. This is going to be fun!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

First Haircut

We're still recovering over here. My cold has developed into a bad cough so I'm a little achy from all the hacking. Today was good, though. Mom and Dad took the boys to see Margaret and Henry in a ballet performance and Chris and I took Ember to get her first haircut. Her stylist is also from Addis Ababa and Ember seemed to enjoy it. Actually, she didn't really seem to notice that anything was special was happening. She was just happy as usual!

The photo below shows the final look. If you look carefully you can see a little french braid on top in the front and then it's tied off with a red ribbon. And doesn't she look like a big girl here? She's taking more and more steps independently each day, but I still wouldn't say she's walking yet. She's still mostly crawling and cruising and taking a few steps when she runs out of things to hold on to. She's also stopped using a bottle and now just drinks milk from a cup. Suddenly our baby is a toddler!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Valentine Bath

I was feeling chilled after spending some time outside at the park with the boys yesterday and it was Valentine's Day so I decided to take a few moments to myself and settle into a hot bath - something I do only once or twice a year. I lit a candle, filled the bath as deep and as hot as I could, stepped in and had about 15 seconds to myself before the boys found me and came wandering in..."Mama? What are you doing? That looks like fun!"

And in the next instant they had stripped down and gotten in with me. And a few minutes later they said, "Mama, can you get out? You're too big!" So much for my bath. They were really excited by the candle, too!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Sick Day

We've been sick. Really sick. I called Chris in desperation yesterday morning after he left for work and I realized I had a temperature of 101. Normally Fridays are easier since the boys have school and I'm home alone with Ember for 4 hours, but since they were sick, they were home and nobody was doing well. Lucky for me Chris came right home and took care of us. I really felt like I got a "sick day" - a bit of luxury in spite of feeling so rotten. Thank you, Chris.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Playing Chase

I think I read in an art book one time about the importance of "filling your well" so that you have something, some material to express in your art. And even though I'm no artist, my well is feeling pretty empty these days. Sometimes I think about posting, but then I get busy with all the household chores and the kids and when I finally do sit down to write, nothing comes to mind. Well, nothing besides the basics like EAT SOMETHING or GO TO BED.

The nanny that we hired last September for 9 hours each week is somewhere between here and Guatemala riding on a motorcycle with her boyfriend. She doesn't expect to be back for several months and so I've been flying solo for the last month and a half. Those 9 hours made a big difference.

Anyway, here is a short video of Ember doing one of her new favorite things: playing chase. This usually brings her to hysterics. Oh, and you'll also notice my sort of lame attempt at styling her hair. Only the top section is long enough to do anything with, but it's fun to try! By the way, we scheduled her first hair cut at a children's salon with a gal from Ethiopia who also gives tips for caring for ethnic hair. Can't wait!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

My Three Bears

This is what the back seat looks like after an hour of swimming followed by an hour playing at the park.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Piggy Found!

Oh, I am so relieved! I think pretty much all the adults in our family took a turn walking around the block where my parents live looking for Piggy, but it was my niece, Margaret, who found him. He was sitting in some heather bushes just off the parking strip by the neighbor's house. We were all so excited and happy that we ended up having an impromptu pizza party here to celebrate. It feels good to have him home and the whole evening Beck held him tight, his eyes half closed, with a huge smile on his face.