Sunday, July 31, 2011

Culture Camp 2011

This weekend, we attended Ethiopian Culture Camp in Lake Geneva, WI. I was excited to see our single mommy friends and possibly meet some new people. The boys were excited to play outside all day.

Helping his brother climb--

Andrew tried to relive his childhood (the one where he hated baby swings and screamed at the sight of them) and found out that they're still not his favorite thing.

Apparently, seeing his brother's arm break in half after jumping from high places did not have the same effect on him that it had on me.

Daniel had hair envy when he saw her curls:

This little beauty is Andrew's cousin. Ok, they're 5th cousins but that still counts, right?  They were so cute together. They never called each other by name--they just kept calling each other, 'cousin'.

 Abel is not easily amused.

I can't take enough pictures of this handsome boy.

This was the best I could do from the one, small shady spot I found.  I'll get better pictures of them on another day--when it isn't so hot.

The boys were in heaven because I let them carry bottles of water around with them and didn't even care if they poured it on their heads.

He's spiderman (this week).

This woman gave a demonstration on how to make injera and almost convinced me that I could actually make it myself.

She's a pro!

We went back to the hotel and did a little swimming since there was a nap boycott going on in our room.

You're probably wondering what he's thinking here. I'm sure it was something like, "WOW! I can't believe my mom brought me swimming even though I refuse to sleep or follow most of the directions she gave me today. She's the BEST mom in the whole wide world!"
 Our group of friends:

Cute cousins:


Someday, Andrew will hate me for telling this story but he's going to hate me at some point anyway so I may as well entertain you til then.  
A few weeks ago, we went to a party with other families who have adopted from Ethiopia. M'aza taught the kids some Ethiopian dances. Andrew loved the dancing but more importantly, he loved the dance teacher. When he saw her at camp, he yelled and ran right up to her. On Saturday night, M'aza was dancing with some of the kids and Andrew found a flower that he wanted to give her. He wanted me to go up with him but that sort of help could come back to bite us in his teen years so I encouraged him to go give her the flower on his own. He finally got up the courage to approach her but on his way over, he kept stopping to giggle uncontrollably. It was the cutest thing.

She loved the flower and quickly put it in her hair (which I later had to explain to him was a good thing)

And then, the big pay-off:

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Tonight was the first night of soccer practice for the boys. They have been so excited to wear their new shin guards and suit up in their long socks and soccer shorts.  They acted as if they had been to soccer practice a hundred times before. They listened to the coaches and tried to follow all of their directions. Daniel watched Andrew intently the whole time and tried to do everything exactly the same way that Andrew did it. It was so fun to watch them experience something new together for the first time.

First, they did some warm-up stretches:

They were given some directions and then they ran up and down the field practicing their 'stay inside the white lines' and 'stop when I yell stop' skills.

This one is fuzzy but I love the look of excitement on his face.

Daniel's favorite part was clapping for himself.

If that was a basketball, this would be a great move.

Next, they practiced weaving through the cones:

or in Daniel's case, running-over-as-many-cones-as-you-can-while-never-touching-the-ball-with-your-feet:

Noah and Andrew:

They both got a few pointers from the coaches,

and then they all played a quick scrimmage. (sort of)

They did a little bit of this

and then ran some sprints (forward, backwards, and sideways).

I love soccer!

Everyone huddled up and yelled, "Go Cougars!"