30 May 2009
27 May 2009
25 May 2009
20 May 2009
19 May 2009
18 May 2009
I was sitting at the computer, typing furiously away and working on an imminent deadline. The children were out playing on the porch. Before it begins to get uncomfortably hot each day, that is usually where you'll find them. I'd actually poked my head out the door a few minutes earlier to check on what they were up to.
Rebekah was working on homework; Jonathan and Elsie Mae had their Fisher Price characters lined up and were marching around the castle, looking very much like a re-enactment of Joshua and the Battle of Jericho. So several minutes later, when I heard the front door open and Jonathan and Elsie chattering, I didn't think too much of it.I didn't, that is, until they suddenly shoved two dripping wet and very large toads right in my face. I almost ended up kissing Elsie's (V.E.R.Y gross)!
I screamed and jumped, almost knocking the chair over. Mary, sleeping at my feet in her bouncer seat, jumped and screamed… and screamed… and screamed. I guess my reaction scared her. Jonathan and Elsie grinned from ear to ear and and start laughing hysterically. They were quite proud of themselves. When my heart was back down out of throat and into its regular position, I asked those two little "sweeties" to take their toads back outside, before they decided to take a bathroom break in our living room. My children complied and I went about the business of calming the little peanut.
I also sent Rebekah out to snap a few photos to commemorate the occasion, and the seed idea for this blog began to germinate...
I had been startled… and briefly terrified to have two large reptiles shoved in my face. But I wasn't surprised that my kiddos were playing with them. That is a pretty run-of-the-mill occurrence around our house. Be it chameleons, lizards, spiders, ants, jerboas, shrews, geckos, skinks, scarabs, termites, earwigs, water scorpions… yes, even cockroaches… this gang is fascinated by all things creepy, crawly, wiggly, squiggly…
I gave up fighting the trend a long time ago. I remember when Brendan was just a little guy, about Elsie Mae's age. We were at his Grandpa Gene's and Grandma Betty's house visiting. It was there that he discovered frogs for the first time. All I could think was "SALMONELLA."We were at Gammie's and Gampy's when Rebekah decided she wanted to make friends with a yellow jacket. She cried because she was stung – and because she was broken-hearted that her new friend hurt her (we've since discovered she's allergic to those critters – and she carries an epi-pen when she remembers it, just in case). She's also the one that took off, Crocodile Hunter style, after the monitor lizard we saw in a park in Ougadougou. That lizard was as big as she was at the time. Sometimes I worry that they'll pick up a scorpion and get stung… or turn over a rock to find a cobra (you know, the spitting kind, with lots of venom) or other nasty snake… so far we've had no seriously dangerous encounters. So... Jonathan and Elsie Mae are convinced that I need to arrange a play date. They are begging to have MckNugget come hang out for the day!
17 May 2009
16 May 2009
14 May 2009
They were all fascinated with the gazelle and the process of making Tuareg tea (featured in yesterday's Wordless Wednesday), scarfed down some yummy brochettes and frites, engaged in lots of "bavardage" (or visiting and telling stories), chasing the goats and the birds and just having an all around great time. It ended up being a pretty late night.When we finally decided it was time to call it a night, we wanted to get a photo of the whole group. When we walked out of the concession to where the vehicles were parked along the road. A shepherd was bringing a rather large herd of sheep and goats by at the time. What was really incredible was how much dust was kicked up into the air. You can only barely see the animals in this photo... look for their eyes! Zeina's parents are on the back right of this photo. Our girls all think "Madame Zeinabou ngya" is one of the most beautiful ladies they've ever met. And here's a photo of all the kiddos. They've been driving us crazy to go back ever since...
I especially love this photo: our gentle, never-met-a-stranger-friendly Nadia, sandwiched between her two best friends, Zeina and Anna. Don't they look like best buddies loving' their time together?
And, just curious... Nadia and Anna want to know how many of you know what a "hippodrome" is? Hippodrome is about the only word they'll use... even though they all now know the English translation.