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Brazilian cousins

Ella’s been having a great time with João and Bebel. She constantly asks where they are, even if they leave the room for just a minute. Poor
Bel has had to deal with Ella constantly saying “Bebel, NO,” stealing her toys, hogging the iPad, refusing to hold her hand and bossing her around (“Bebel, come!” which means “Bebel, eat!), etc. Bebel takes it in stride and is very patient with her.

The kids showed Ella off at their school. When João was asked “how can you tolerate so much cuteness (referring to Bel and Ella), he shrugged and nonchalantly said “I don’t know.” He then called out to his friends and said “hey guys, this is my cousin. Her name is Ella.”

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And we have a crawler!

Since we’ve arrived, Rhys reached two milestones. He learned how to hold his own bottle and most importantly, started crawling!

There have been many people here that contributed to teaching him how to crawl. As of Wednesday he actually figured out how to crawl and even watching him in the morning time vs. afternoon that same day shows a great improvement in his dexterity.

Marcela and Rhys

Bebel and Rhys:

Paula and Rhys:

More trial and error:

Rhys finally does it!
http://youtu.be/2XHW2ev4WbE

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Ella and the horse

I’ve been meaning to send this for a while. When we were at the country home, my cousin Ricky took Ella out to the stable to look at the horses. Ella immediately took to them. She petted every single one of them and even wanted to touch the ones that were not confined.

When she saw the horse trainer get off the horse, she immediately announced that it was “her turn” and kept repeating “my turn, my turn.” My cousin knew a few people there and started talking to them. He jokingly mentioned to the trainer that Ella wanted to ride, and the trainer said he could take her!

Ella put on the helmet and got up on the horse without he slightest of trepidation. She rode with Paulo, the trainer, for about 20 min through a big field and then through the woods. Not only did she not show any signs of fear, she almost fell asleep on the horse!

P.S. We went after swimming, which is why Ella has her swimsuit on.
Ella putting helmet on:

Ella getting up on the horse:

Ella riding with trainer:

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Hotel Mazzaropi

Ella had a grand time at the farm hotel. She was the youngest kid there, but was right up there with the other kids riding the charrete, pony, milking a cow, feeding the chickens, etc.

Every time I asked her if she wanted to do something like riding the pony, she would say “yes.” I wasn’t sure if she understood what I was saying and was convinced she would balk when she realized what she signed up for. I was wrong. When she was up, she would say “my turn” get up on the horse, cart, you name it! Fearless little girl she is.

When the charrete left without her, she took off running after it and screaming “Tia, Tia” until they stopped and put her up there.

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Brazil trip

Tim got upgraded to business class but had to take pugui with him. That’s quite a trade off, and I must say flying coach with Ella was easier!

Blaine

Lots of fun over Labor Day. Mimi and Papa rented a cabin and Ella got to spend a lot of time on the beach and in the pool.

Papa took Rhys on long walks.

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Space cadet

This is how she decided to dress after we got back from Blaine:

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