Rushnyk and the Chicken Thief

We had some beautiful weather today. It was around 50 degrees at 8am, so I packed up the dogs and Gus and headed out for a quick walk.

Gus rocked his Christmas PJs, sweater and boots. He’s cool like that.

He saw some birds, which are super exciting when you are 2.

More after school shots. It seem so ordinary, but I don’t think seeing her strong and happy will ever get old to me.

I got to talk with Andrei, our Ukrainian guest, a bit more today. The kids simply adore him, and he is great with them. He spent part of his evening playing legos with Reed. Lena announced that he is her “friend”. And he can get Gus to giggle with a single look. He spent a good deal of his day on the phone with his kids– both those who came here with him on the hosting program and those back in Ukraine. He seems to care a great deal about “his children”, as he calls them.

He also presented me with this gift today, which I think is a Rushnyk. I will have to take more pictures of the whole thing tomorrow. If you know me at all, you know that I don’t place much value on most gifts, but I already adore this one. Hand-embroidered by his mother. Uniquely Ukrainian with so much history behind it. Beautiful!

After the kids spent some time with Andrei tonight, we had some fun conversations. Reed had to ask him if he was Russian or Ukrainian. This is very confusing to them and Lena also announced that she is Russian. I think partly because they spoke the Russian language, but are Ukrainian. And then, littlest brother being Russian doesn’t help. Reed did not believe me that he used to speak Russian, so I showed the kids some old videos.

When Lena saw herself in the video, she instantly said, “Oh… my hair… was…” and then just shook her head.



Reed came into the kitchen as I was doing dishes tonight. “Mama, Lena… Lena told me to cover my eyes like this (hands over his eyes)… Then she… she stole the rest of the chicken off of my plate!” Sneaky little sister steals chicken right out from under her big brother. Too clever, that one.

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