Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Weekend in Chicago

We spent the weekend in Chicago, with hopes to attend the Dragon Boat Festival. Well, unfortunately, Mother Nature had other plans and the festival was canceled due to flooding in the park. Still, we managed to have an interesting weekend anyway.

Friday we arrived and checked out Shedd Aquarium. Todd and I had been years ago, but it was the first time for the kids. Unfortunately, it was terribly HOT, and the aquarium was absolutely PACKED. I mean PACKED. So much so that you really couldn't even seen the aquariums, much less move. We'll have to try that another time I think...so the kids can enjoy it more.

After the aquarium we ventured into Chicago and found Las Tablas...an awesome Colombian restaurant. We were so excited...there are virtually no Colombian restaurants anywhere near where we live, so we were salivating just thinking about it. It was a super popular restaurant...so popular that the wait was 2 hours for a table. Well, our little ones couldn't wait that long, but the restaurant was super kind and let us get an order to go. So, we enjoyed an Colombian picnic in our hotel room complete with empanadas, arepa & chorizo, and plantain and beans and rice. Yum, yum, yum!!

Saturday after finding out that the Dragon Boat Festival was canceled, we headed over to Chinatown to explore. We had a BALL shopping in the little shops and feasted on some delicious Chinese pastries. My favorite were the red bean moon cakes...the rest of the family thought I was nuts. :)

For lunch, we met five other families that had adopted from Taiwan! We met Lisa and her beautiful family (Destination Taiwan blog) and Sarah and her family (My Little Lantern blog) and Katie and her family (Around the World to Danny blog). It was so neat to finally meet these wonderful families in person and to see our beautiful Taiwanese kids together. :)

After lunch we headed to Millennium Park to play in the fountains and to see the bean sculpture. Unfortunately, it was still burning hot outside, and CROWDED, and at the fountain we had two mishaps. Sara fell and cut her foot, then Tessa fell and I could actually HEAR her head hit the concrete. Scared me to death!! So we hightailed it out of there and spent a nice peaceful evening at the hotel.

All in all, the trip was worth it to meet the other families. We're glad we went...and hope to meet other adoptive families in the future!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Where have we been???

Sheesh, summer is FLYING by. I've been a bad blogger, but I do have an excuse. I had a 20 page paper due for the writing class I'm taking this summer. Whew, that was a doozie, but now it's done, thank goodness.

Well, otherwise, we've just been enjoying the summer and our wonderful kids. Yesterday, we went to our annual Colombian Connections fiesta down state. It's so fun to see all the beautiful Colombian kids and boy, is our group growing! There were many, many new kids and babies there this year, including our Tessa (okay, she's not Colombian, but hey, she's part of our American/Colombian/Taiwanese family). :)

Of course, being the wonderful mommy I am, I totally forgot my camera. You'll just have to trust me that it was loads of fun.

One of the best things we did this year was buy a pool! It's an above ground, nothing fancy, but definitely fun for all of us to swim in. We've really, really enjoyed having it. And while we're incredibly lucky to live in an area full of lakes and beautiful beaches, it's SO hard to lug all the kids and all their gear to the beach...especially sweet Tess who's not a huge fan of sand. Ha! So, hanging at home by the pool has been great for our family.

In other news, Tessa turned 18 months old on the 4th! I can't believe it. How did she get that old? No...seriously? I'm finding her babyhood is just flying by...probably because we're so busy with three kids now. She is now 31" tall (40th percentile) and 19 1/2 lbs. Poor baby, she fell right off the charts for her weight. But, the doctor didn't seem concerned. She'll just be a petite little thing all her life. She is learning so much right now. She runs like crazy all of a sudden. She is doing a lot more pretend play (holds two stuffed animals and makes them "talk" to each other), she likes to help clean (throws stuff away), and she is learning more words now. She says mama, dada, ball, book, up, good girl, thank you, and is making attempts at many more words. She wears size 3 diapers and size 12-18 month clothes.

Here's a few random pics of late. Next weekend we are going to the Dragon Boat Races in Chicago...we are SO excited to meet up with other Taiwanese adoptive families!