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December 23, 2008

Vrolijk Kerstfeest!

We just got back from visiting Maaike (6 months pregnant) and Alessandro in Oirschot, Nederland. At minus 7 degrees Celsius, we spent our days in lots of layers. We spent Christmas eve with Joost (Maaike's brother) and the rest of Maaike's family. We ate very well. On Christmas Day, we explored the village, tried some jenever, and then Gina, Marina and I had a nice quiet Christmas dinner on our own with lots of skypes from family. The day after Christmas (the 2nd day of Christmas in the Netherlands), I woke up feeling a bit ill, so we decided to stay close to "home". Later in the day, I went ice skating with Gina. In the evening Maaike's mom came over for dinner -- Ale made us fantastic homemade spinach gnocchi! On Saturday, we had pancakes at a pannenkoken house in the countryside and then spent the afternoon in a little town called Oisterwijk.Sunday we took the train to Utrecht, where Maaike used to go to school. Monday, Gina, Marina and I spent in Oirschot again, running in the countryside and enjoying the small shops and bars.Our last day we went with Ale and Maaike to enjoy a rare and sparkling sunny day in Amsterdam. We'll never forget the 4 straight days of rain on our last visit! Amsterdam was just beautiful! We bought some reypenaer cheese, tulip bulbs and some wooden clogs for Marina. A wonderful winter vacation! Most importantly, we were able to catch up with Maaike and Ale whom we MISS TERRIBLY.

We're now glad to be back in balmy(relatively speaking) Barcelona.

December 19, 2008

Opening more Christmas presents

Marina continues to open Christmas presents. She seems to enjoy the wrapping paper and tags more than anything. Her favorite presents include the plastic case that the soft blocks came in, her pink ball as well as Biscuit's Pat and Play Christmas book.

December 18, 2008

The BSC Christmas dinner at the 4 Gats

Gina's department had a small group dinner at the Quatre Gats.

December 17, 2008

The Guigó group with the Caga Tió

The Caga Tió pooped us shirts decorated with the human genome. Photo taken right outside our office on the 4th floor balcony of the PRBB.

December 11, 2008

Papa Noel and early Christmas presents

Christmas started early this year, with presents from Marina's grandparents delivered especially by Papa Noel two weeks before Christmas. Papa Noel, otherwise known as Santa Claus, visited the children at the Sagrada Familia. Marina was sure not to miss out, with her letter in hand. We also gave her an early present this year, a "correpasillo" which she immediately fell in love with, whizzing up and down the hall!

December 08, 2008

Going to the Christmas Fair

Marina wore her new outfit from Marisa to the Christmas fair. A fleecy one-peice outfit with a hood. She's doesn't like to wear the hood inside but outside it was perfect.

December 07, 2008

Decorating Christmas cookies

Our annual Christmas cookie decorating party was a success! Eduard, Emilia and Martina were the first to show. Then our upstairs neighbors, Laurent and his daughters, Emma and Solen, came down. In the end Ogo and Greta were also able to stop by. We had American hot chocolate (with cinnamon, orange peel and allspice) while decorating the sugar cookies.

December 06, 2008

Börek at Ogo and Greta's

We dressed Marina up in a Christmas-y outfit my mom sent and took the bus over to Ogo and Greta's, where we were treated to homemade Börek, a Turkish specialty made with yufka (phyllo), spinach and cheese.

December 01, 2008


So cute in her new monkey pajamas! By the way, the common use of "mona" in Spanish is to mean cute, but mono also means monkey. I couldn't think of a more fitting description for this photo :0