Our travels have taken us to Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and finally Massachusetts. The older kids plotted out the first part of our journey so we ended up in the following places:
The kids loved each and every one of these places while C. and I just hung back and watched in awe as they took in these historic places. (We were thrilled that time prevented us from including Mount Vernon on this trip.) :). Tortuga and Corazon captivated the tour guide's attention at Monticello with their questions about Jefferson and he almost fell over when Corazon asked to see the wine dumbwaiter. Their favorite part: his library because "he was a book lover too." Their favorite souvenir was a pencil inscribed with his famous quote "I cannot live without books." Milagro's favorite was the Liberty Bell but she was very distressed that it had a crack. She wanted to see the liberty bell "without a crack" and thus far she has created a highly embellished story of how the bell got it's crack and how much trouble those people who cracked it should be in! Pollito liked Independence Hall (as did the older kids) because he thought the building was "cool" and the older kids were in awe because C.'s 7th great grandfather was a signer of the Declaration of Independence so they feel a special connection to anything related to that. The statue of liberty made the greatest impression on all of us. I was the only one who had been there before but it is still an awesome sight. Walking the hundreds of stairs up and down however was not awesome! We had a glorious day so we took in Ellis Island as well and I swear you can still feel the spirit of the many souls who passed through those halls. The kids loved the movie at Ellis Island and are now begging to study immigration for our Social Studies work this summer! I think it is official that my kids are geeks!
We arrived in MA and headed to Rockport/Gloucester where we have been for the past week. Milagro's highpoint so far has been riding in a purple smartcar. She is obsessed with smart cars and a visit from the minister who baptized them last summer brought the chance for a ride right to our doorstep. It was a brief event just down the street since fitting her carseat wasn't an option (one reason we aren't getting one anytime soon!) For the most part, RAD and ODD behaviors have been "under control" with the exception of one really lousy day with Tortuga. He got physically aggessive with me, for what appeared to be an inconsequential redirection and I almost had to restrain him. We actually were able to work through it together and he calmed down enough that we could move through it. We ended up having a wonderful conversation (once he was completely regulated) about how his anger affects other people and how his lack of trust makes it hard for everyone in the family including himself. He missed out on one beach trip but otherwise has been able to join the family for lots of relaxing time in the sun. We are excited to be spending time in Boston seeing so many friends and family for the next couple of weeks. I think that being back in our old house will bring up some good and bad memories for all of them but especially the older kids. We have begun talking about how our bodies hold memory even if we don't actually
"remember" particular events and that is giving the older kids some language to process some of what they might feel over the next few weeks especially as we reconnect with birth families and previous foster families.