Monday, May 27, 2013

Kiah in the Pizzarama

 Kiah spent an afternoon with Dad learning how to make brick oven pizzas. She helped roll out the dough, top it and bake it in the stone oven.

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 Here are a few pics of JoJo that show how big she is getting. She is such a fun baby. We missed her on our hike, as she stayed home with a sitter.

For those who are wondering, this is Desitin. She reminded me a lot of Kiah who also smeared Desitin all over herself. I don't know where I was or why I missed the fact that the house was suddenly quiet, but I guess that is what I get for my lack of vigilance.

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El Bejuco Falls

 So, after our swim, we dried off..well, not me because I was still hiking in wet clothes from my time in the river. We  start up towards the other waterfall....remember the part about only 80 meters? I don't think that was accurate. After 2 hours, Kiah was sobbing and we were all soooo tired with no end in sight. Poor girl. The only thing she could say was "I hate hiking!" "I just want to go home." Finally by about 2pm, we reached the waterfall and ate our lunch. We were exhausted. Most of our path up to the falls was climbing over steep boulders and rocks. They were so steep the guide would have to climb up and then lift the kids, while the guide behind him would push the kids up. It was so hard and so long and so steep. I just can't express in words how dangerous and tiring it was climbing up those huge rocks. We sat for a few minutes and took pictures of the waterfall.

Finally, we were ready to head back to the lodge. Louis asked the guide about how long it was to get back. He said "4 hours or so." If you need a reminder of what I said in my other post, this was supposed to be a quick little 2 hour family hike. We were already 3 hours into our hike and completely exhausted.
 I knew Kiah just couldn't go too much farther. One of the guides said that just a bit farther up, the path got less steep and would be easier. After about 45 min. more of uphill stairs and rocks, the trail finally leveled out a bit. However, it was so full of leaves that we kept tripping on small rocks hidden under them. We wouldn't know from step to step if the ground was solid or rocky until we took the step. Kiah and Gabe were both in crocks so they slipped a lot even without the added problem with leaves. Anyway, I got carried away in the memory. Let me hop down to the end of our story, or you will get just as tired as we were just reading this. After we were certain the bridge was nearby Louis asked the guide again how much farther. He said "2 hours." At that point, I think I felt like Kiah and I just about broke into tears with her. She was just so tired and couldn't get her energy between sobbing tears. The total hike ended up taking 6 hours. We returned sore and tired, but perhaps with a greater sense of what we could accomplish as a family. For the rest of the trip, we all returned to conversations about what we learned on our hike and I think even Kiah mentioned that she could tell her class she could do anything she put her mind to since she could do a 6 hour hike. The only person not completely exhausted at the end was Gabe, who was still bouncing around and playing with a little toy car waiting for the driver to come pick us up after the hike. Of course you knew that is how it would be, though,  huh.:)
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The 1/2 Day Hike Begins

 I just want to point out to those who hear this story from other's perspective, I really truly tried to find a hike suitable for our family. We tried to go white water rafting but Gabe was too young. Instead, we found what sounded like a fun little family hike. It was described as a short 20 min. walk to the first waterfall and another 80m (the length of a football field) to the highest waterfall and then finally a walk back over a swinging bridge within 5 min. of the lodge we were staying at. I figured with playing in the waterfall and lunch, it woudl take around 2 hours roundtrip.  The picture above is the river we forded to begin our hike. Luckily, my camera was in a waterproof bag so there are is no photo evidence of me slipping on the first of many rocks and falling into the water.....hiking wet is not fun :(
 After our "20 minute" short hike....which was actually closer to 45 min. all uphill, we finally made it to the first waterfall. This was an amazing place and so private. We had so much fun standing under the powerfull rush of water and just relaxing after a long uphill climb to get to it. Our guides, who only spoke Spanish, relaxed with us. 
 At this point, we were loving our hike and feeling like the kids were getting rested enough to hike up a bit farther to see El Bejuco, the big waterfall we were heading to.
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Pico Bonito Rainforest

 Story time....OK, so yes, it has been a while but we just have not done anything worth blogging about. Now, I have juicy details of our latest adventure...I can tell you are all excited :) We decided as a last adventure while living in Honduras, we would head over to mainland and go hiking in Pico Bonito (Beautiful Mountain Peak). It is a national park just outside of LaCeiba. We went with Kim and Merlin, our family from Altamont. They were down visiting Roatan for the week and decided to come along. This is our plane. We all fit....barely. There was 2 spots in the back that were empty. I had to check my carryon bag, as it was too big to fit inside the plane.
 Louis had to sit up next to the pilot. He is now a very experienced copilot and swears he can handle the landing gear and take off himself :)
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Friday, March 29, 2013

Decorating Easter Cookies

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Bean Baby

 Just as a quick note, these beans have become JoJos staple. They are refried beans in a mylar bag. You can eat them straight from the bag, as demonstated below or you can add a bit of water and warm them up to go in tortillas. There is always a bag in the fridge as we eat them regularly. However, JoJo is our only child to suck them directly from the bag like a CapriSun juice bag.

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The Circus Comes To Roatan

 So, my story has little to do with the actual circus we went to and more about the background story. So, for the past 2 weeks the circus has been in town and we have watched it set up and seen all of the promos of their arrival. They are a Honduran circus and are based on the mainland...not from the US.(This becomes an important ingredient to my story in a second). So, I mentioned to our accountant that we were going to take the kids on the weekend. She says "If you bring a cat or a dog, you can get in for free." I initially think...."huh, that is kind of cool". Then of course, you are all thinking what I was thinking...."what do they do with all those cats and dogs?" Yep. They feed them to the big cats (tigers, lions, leopards etc.).  I say "Daphne, how would I explain to Kiah that we have to give Kibbles our cat away?" She says "tell her there are some big kitties that want to play with your little kitty." Now, I totally get the idea that our island is full of mangy sick strays and that this could be a great way to help with the population of stays. However, our accountant then says another astounding statement (as if eating cats and dogs isn't astounding enough)...she says "I have 2 cats and 2 dogs at my house. If I can find 2 more, I can get my whole family in for free." She was seriously considering giving up her pets for a night at the circus. I was so shocked and a bit sickened. Of course I ranted and raved about boycotting the circus for hours and I told everyone that I knew, that they were feeding cats and dogs to the animals. Alas, we went anyway, but we paid in cash...not cats.

All in all, it was a horrible circus. It was in Spanish and not very professional. The big cats were mistreated and did not act all that trained. The clowns were crass and not funny (even in Spanish), and the munchies we bought were stale. Oh well, another experience to put in their baby books. I don't think I will relay the story of the cats and dogs though.
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JoJo Goes Pee

 Yep, another child and another potty party. This time, JoJo initiated things. Over the last few weeks she has been hopping on the potty chair and grunting. Not that anything more than that has happened, but she loves grunting and thinking she is doing something important. Finally, this time, she actually peed. I called all the kids into the bathroom and we jumped up and down and yelled "Yea, potty potty!!" It is a ritual we have played out with several kids and I am thinking this is the last kid to get a potty party.

 Now everytime she sits on the toilet, she yells and claps....even when she just sits there and does nothing more than grunt.
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Jo Jo Goes to School

 Poor JoJo has seen the kids for the last several months don their bags and head off to school. She faithfully stands on the porch and yells "bye-bye" to them. She found my empty airplane bag and decided to play the routine out. She spent at least a half hour hollering "bye-bye" to me as she would put my bag on and walk out the front door to the porch. Then she would come take it off and start over. It was quite a funny afternoon activity.
 The bag is huge on her!
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