Being Aunt Tricia

Well, as promised, here is my Colorado post.  It’s not going to contain nearly as many shocking cultural differences as the Ecuador posts, but I promise lots of cute nephew and niece pictures.

Let’s rewind for a second.  My brother and his wife had a beautiful daughter on January 8th.  I received a voice-mail in my email inbox (thanks to GoogleVoice) and rejoiced all the way from the Southern Hemisphere.  Finally, four and a half months later, I was able to meet her.

Isn’t she the most precious thing?

As perfect as she is, she’s not the only reason I made the trek out west.

(Actually, since I [ahemm, my mom- thanks Mom] sold my car in November and I’ve been a bike commuter since being stateside [being a bike-riding substitute teacher made me feel like I was living inside of some comedic sitcom], I took a Greyhound bus from Topeka to Denver and back… now that was an experience)

I hadn’t seen my brothers, sister-in-law, or nephew since October, and that visit was really brief.  I needed to spend some quality time with my Colorado family.  Meeting Naomi was a huge highlight, but the five days that I spent with my family was great for many other reasons.

I’m not sure if there’s an elevator in the Denver metro area that Elijah’s not ridden in.

For starters, I got to spend lots of time with my nephew, Elijah.  I found out, firsthand, that he is really into riding elevators.  One day, Elizabeth (my sister-in-law), Elijah, Naomi, and I went to the mall.  He calls this mall the Up-down mall, because it has four elevators, in which he loves to go, you guessed it, up and down.  In between riding the elevators, he let me spend a little bit of time shopping for Kuwait clothes (nothing sheer, must have sleeves, must not be low cut, cannot be tight…), so long as we were back on an elevator quickly.

Eli on his tricycle (with handles for the parents- but he often rode it solo)

I had so much fun with my three year-old nephew.  For the first time, he struck me as more of a kid and less of a baby.  He is playful.  He talks.  He has weird little quirks.  He no longer wears diapers.  Up until this visit, he’s been an adorable, quiet little baby.  Now that he’s old enough to joke around with, he is more fun than ever.

Just look at that crazed smile! How could you not love that kid?

It was also wonderful to see family members over three feet tall.  I spent my first night with Tim, and unfortunately didn’t take a single picture!  Well, there is one.

Uncle Tim giving unsolicited drumming lessons to his nephew. Fortunately, for Paul and Elizabeth, Elijah does not like loud noises, so Elijah will not be begging for a loud drum set anytime soon.

The next four nights, I spent at the house of Paul and Elizabeth.  I loved getting to sleep in their comfy guest bed, eat their lovingly made meals, and be a part of their family for a few days.

Such a cute family! Naomi, Paul, Elizabeth, and Elijah.

I got to see one other pair of relatives, my Aunt Cheryl and Uncle Joe.  It was great catching up with them and letting them spoil me with an amazing dinner at their place.

Relaxing at Uncle Joe and Aunt Cheryl’s house.

My time in Colorado was simple, relaxing, and just what I was hoping for.  I wish that I could somehow continue to get to know other parts of the world and be close to my family, especially the little tykes.  For the next half a year, pictures and skype will have to do.

But, one day, I’ll be closer to these two.  It’s too hard telling them goodbye.

I want to bring him to Kuwait with me!

Swoon.

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