Tuesday, July 26, 2011


We took our annual trip to Oklahoma last week for fun with Grandma and Grandpa and time to see two of our favorite families with Liberian kids. The above picture is at the Oklahoma Science Museum, very cool place. The kids loved it.
Annie was the only one with straight hair, that got her a lot of attention.
Val and Lorea have moved! This is the front door to their new house. For us it felt like a resort. An awesome place to relax and get away.
Oklahoma travels did not interfere with Scott's obsession of following Twins Baseball.
Matthew and Eman
The Knupp's have a new dog, bubbles, she swims!
The whole gang
The view of the house from the trampoline, backyard.
Horses next door!
A zip line
Play houses, one for Maima and one for Akins
Group photo with horses
Maima and Eman have a 'special' relationship
Eman, what can I say he didn't make much progress on this trip
The surprise of the crowd on Eman's new outfit
A walk to find spiders, Sue was not disappointed we didn't find any.
Scott get up, you are being lazy, say the kids
Matthew shows off his dancing during karoke night
Jemama LOVES to read
Bye Akins, we'll miss you!
Having fun with G'pa and G'ma
This is what they do in Oklahoma when it's been 105 for more than a month. They try and get vanilla wafers in their mouth from their forehead.
Thanks for a great visit!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Eman Bakes

We had a family gathering for Eman's birthday today. We went to Funland in Fredericksburg. Funland is translation for don't leave the Excedrin at home. We went there though because it was the only place I could find with go-karts and I thought Eman would have a ball with them. Not so much. Too loud for Eman. He kept his fingers in his ears the whole time.

I brought a cake to Loudland. Eman wanted to help me decorate it. Have you ever tried to frost a cake with Eman near you? It's like trying to do yoga balance moves in an earthquake. Or maybe it's more like walking a tight rope in a monsoon. I wanted to do a racetrack in the form of an 8 with grass around. Eman wanted to play with the frosting. I tried to be as polite as possible, 'Eman, here practice on the plate.' Eman wanted to write his name on the cake, not bad. Then he wanted to write Happy Birthday. I've lost control. Eman go ahead, why do I care, it's your cake, have a ball. H-A-P...Mommy you better do it.

Then tonight I had to make brownies for Abegail's World Cup Soccer viewing party (Go USA) and Eman definitely want to help. He wanted to help so bad that he took the eggs I had put out for the mix and took them to the bathroom with him so no one else would be able to do it. (Let's hope none of the girls on Abegail's team find this blog.) That lead to a discussion about if an egg shell is dirty can we still use the egg inside. Similar to the stimulating discussions we engage in about if there is bug on a banana peel is the banana inside contaminated? It's thought provoking for sure.

Eman asked if he could lick the bowl. "Yes," I say. I 'm not sure if I mentioned this but Eman lives in the moment. At the very second I said, yes, as he is stirring the eggs into the batter he proceeds to take a big spoonful and put it in his mouth. I shriek.
Eman, who has never really learned about bipolar tendencies but does realize that I've just gone from nurturing and patient to exasperated and ready for the home, realizes something must be wrong. He takes the spoonful of batter out of his mouth, having tasted it but not having swallowed it, and puts it back in the bowl. He looks up at me, head cocked just slightly, with grin so big you could probably fit an entire egg, shell and all, in there.

Scott looks up from his 500th MN Twins game of the season, "What's going on?"
"Your son thought he could lick the bowl before it was licking ready."
"You're the one who said he could help," says Scott, with a tone of we all make choices in life, this is just one of the ones you didn't think about.
"Yes, how do you think he is going to learn to help or cook if I don't let him? " I argue back, in my best I am the victim here tone.
"I thought we were going for getting him to learn to read?" says Scott.
Really, I'm thinking to myself, I was just going for clean underwear everyday, but I am still doing that grade on a curve thing.
Out loud I say, "Yes, I'm with you! I think...., we should all have dreams...."

The batter is poured in the pan, the bowl is licking ready. Eman is no longer interested. He has clearly moved on to his Michael Jackson music phase. At least we are still kind of on the egg theme, "beat it, beat it..."
Happy 8th Birthday to my Eman who reminds me everyday, I have not mastered life.