Yesterday, Sunday, was the last weekend day as a family before Andrew and I go to Ethiopia for our first of two trips. We wanted to take the kids to Build a Bear to create something for their sister together, and even though it was far, it was luckily near an Ethiopian restaurant. The kids and Andrew had never had Ethiopian food before, I had it once in Little Ethiopia and loved it.
“Do you have a reservation?” the woman asked me as Elijah laid his head on my shoulder, “No,” I smiled.
“You can sit at the big table in the back.” We made our way over, Elijah sitting on the little pillows, everyone finding their spot as we smelled thick aromas of spices in our shadowed seat with hints of golden light. Pictures of Ethiopia lined the walls and the kids stared up.
After we ordered we played Eye Spy with the kids to keep their minds off their hunger, intensified by the delicious food being served around us
There are no plates and no silverware, but one, large family sized plate covered in Injera, spongy bread, and topped with spiced chickpeas, roasted chicken, stewed lentils and greens. I showed them how to tear and roll, but they didn’t need the instruction and plowed their little hands in, going faster with each taste, everyone getting their fill.
Maria and I are convinced to have meals like this at home often, no dishes 😉
When everyone was full, we leaned back, while Finley used his finger tips to get any last flavors he could, scooped up unto his mouth, even used the serving spoon for the chickpeas.
We headed to the mall, which was swamped. This experience may have been more of a cultural experience for us, so fancy, so many people. I think we’ve been out of the loop. We tracked down build a bear, “We’re here!” we whispered to the kids as we walked in. They searched each animal, and settled on a butter cream, floppy bear after a unanimous vote.
We crouched in the corner and recorded our voices,
“Mommy loves you!”
“Daddy loves you!”
“WE LOVE YOU!” rang the two older kids in unison, then Elijah realized he was supposed to say it too, “I love…” just before he was cut off. It was all kind of perfect 🙂
The boys were calm and silent during the stuffing process, seeing the bear come to life, they watched through silent, enraptured eyes as the girl explained each step.
They each picked out a silky heart to place inside the bear, “Rub it on your heart that she will be filled with love, on your arms for strength, on your heads for a strong mind, give it a kiss and put it inside your bear.”
Our bear got sewed up, and ‘washed.’ We nixed any bear accessories, which were many.
Andrew and I will bring the bear with us, probably put some Serenity oil on it so she can have a memory scent and leave it with her. She can hear our voices each time she pushes it’s paw for the couple weeks we have to go home and wait for Embassy.
Not once did the kids ask to make their own, but were excited to be doing something together for their sister.
You are so loved, little one. We will see you soon!