Thursday, December 27, 2007

Catching Up - Through Stories and Photos!

We've found that Angie has a very good 'angry face' fact SO good, it even scares her! I captured the shot above one evening as Laura was helping me cook. Angie wanted to sit on the counter and help too - but she wanted to sit very close to the burning stove...and Mami didn't feel so comfortable with that. This is the reaction I got when I sat her further away than she wanted. I captured the shot on camera, and when I showed it to her she cried and recoiled in fear...we tried to explain to her that it was Angie in the photo...but she was sure it was some sort of monster! Well, sometimes she is a little monster...but mostly she's a real the rest of the photos will certainly attest!

This was the night of the famed 'Angie Angry Face'. Laura helped me cook Macaroni and Cheese. The first time we served Mac & Cheese to the kiddos, they thought it was very weird food and balked at it...but eventually ate it. We served it again and they decided it would taste the best with ketchup on top (they pretty much put ketchup on every food)...and they've eaten it that way ever since...and they ask us why Minnesota food is so weird... :)

More cooking Angie & Laura help Holly's mom (Abuela Meadows) make white chocolate covered pretzels for Christmas. The girls' job was to do the green and red sprinkles. You can see in the photo that Angie was a bit over-zealous with the red sprinkles! :) We spent nearly a week with Holly's family in Iowa - it was a lot of fun and the kids REALLY loved playing with their cousins - Heather (age 12), Joel (age 12), Sarah (age 11), Max (age 9) and going sledding! We had planned to return to MN on Sunday, Dec. 23rd...but then a blizzard-like snowstorm that hit Iowa on Saturday (the day we celebrated Christmas with the family) made the entire Meadows clan snow-bound in Holly's parents house...we were quite impressed that they had enough blankets, pillows and floor space to provide for 19 people to sleep! It was a fun slumber party!

Speaking of the cousins, this is the oldest cousin on the Meadows side - Heather Stanfield. She is quite sophisticated in this photo - modeling her brand new blue pashmina all the way from Italy (brought home by Uncle Jon's girlfriend Rachel - thanks Rachel!). Heather was quite excited to meet her new cousins and she was such a great cousin! She had practiced the Spanish she had been learning in school and did very well communicating with the new cousins! She also made them each some really special gifts based on their specific interests. She has a great new blog too that she started after becoming a regular reader of the DresselFamilia blog!

One of the gifts that Angie received from her Grandparents (Abuelos) was a trunk with a number of fairy costumes. For the following days that we spent in Iowa, Angie was nearly always wearing a fairy costume...and how could she resist when she had to know she was this darn cute?! We called her our 'Pink Princessa'. :)

Oh...and in case you were wondering...fairies go potty too! :) (yeah, we know this is one of those type of photos she'll yell at us for taking when she is about 14 years old...but every child needs a few of those type of photos, right?)

We've learned that all of our three ninos are very interested in crafts and putting things together. We have had a number of projects we worked on together as a familia...including painting/coloring wooden ornaments...Angie was quite excited to show off her ornament and find the perfect spot on the tree to put it. (you may also notice from her mouth that she had enjoyed a cup of hot chocolate just before this pose!)

Juancho has a few sets that involve building or constructing something...and he got a couple more for Christmas. He loves putting things together...and as long as the instructions have pictures, it doesn't matter what language they're written in...he'll figure it out!

The first couple weeks we were home, the kids would ask each day when snow would fall again. Since MN had been pummeled by storms just before we got home from Colombia, we hoped that we'd see snow fall again soon...but it wasn't until a couple days before Christmas that the snow actually did fall. So as we waited for that day, Laura and Angie and Holly worked on making our OWN snowflakes. As you see here, Angie gives them One Thumb UP!

Juancho got his first Cubs jersey from Tio (Uncle) Jon for Christmas. Holly's father was born and raised in Chicago-land and has always been a die-hard Cubs fan - even during the rougher years for the team. Holly's brother has kept the loyalty, as has the rest of the Meadows family! We'll have to get him out to Wrigley Field sometime next summer!

Juancho and Laura have gotten quite a bit of sled-time in. This picture was taken on Christmas Day when they went sledding with their Minnesota Dressel-side cousins - Abby (age 10), Olivia (age 9), and Isabel (age 6). They've also done a bit of sledding around our house and while in Iowa they did some death-defying sledding with Papi (Mami had to close her eyes!) and we all went sledding one night in the fog at a nearby golf course. Fun Fun!!

What a handsome pooch! PJ handled the children coming home, travels for the holidays and the craziness around the house with grace and ease...we think he is GREAT!

Laura's reaction on Christmas morning when she opened her 'Santa Gift' and saw that Santa had brought just what she asked for...plates, cups and flatware for her little kitchen (thanks friends of the Gordon's!). She's been 'cooking' up a storm ever since!

Angie on Christmas morning showing off one of her FAVORITE items...Chocolate MNM's! She definitely takes after her Papi!

The children on Christmas morning...each opening a gift! The kids had a wonderful Christmas - thanks in part to the many people who donated or gave gifts to our family...what a blessing for them...THANK YOU!!

Laura on Christmas far her favorite gift from Christmas Day were her Dora dolly twins...which she has named Juanita and Juanito (a nod to her brother and our friends Tamara and baby John in Boston) and they have not left her side since then!

Angie wearing her new pajamas and playing with Laura's new toys! (shh...don't tell!) The girls do a marvelous job of being creative and coming up with their own playtime story lines. They are quite the little 'mami's' and do a great job caring for their babies!

Angie under the tree (one of Mami & Papi's three best presents this year!) after a long Christmas Day. If you look close you'll see her new and improved 'do...with blue streaks! Cousin Abby got a kids hair dye kit for Christmas and Angie came home with blue streaks...Laura with pink! (it all washed out as easy as pie during the bath the next day!)

Christmas Joy! Juancho, Laura and Angie - Christmas 2007

PS - For those of you thinking we forgot to send you a Christmas card this year...never fear, they are coming soon! We figure bringing home these three treasures gave us a good reason to be a bit late on Christmas cards this year!

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas too!


Luke and Emily said...

Thanks for the update! :) Glad to hear that things are going well and the adjustments for all are coming along. The kids are adorable!

'Lil Hawk said...

Looks like you all had a GREAT Christmas! We miss you - we'll get together when we get back!!