Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Hmmm, scince my last post was August 1, I guess it's time to update the blog.
We moved the week before school started in August. It was crazy! We began looking for a new home early last spring, but it took months to find what we wanted, and then many more months to negotiate a deal. We literally threw all our things in the house and focused on getting the new school year underway. Around mid October we began really unpacking and getting better settled in, but it was a slow process squeezing in a box here and a box there. We still have much to do and especially need to start shopping for new furniture. We gave away lots of things when we moved to China and have been kind of "camping out" ever since. I've loved being stripped down and in minimalist mode, but it is now time for some new things to finish out our home. It's beautiful, we have so much more space and a lovely little yard. We are blessed in every way.
I hope to post more about our past few months soon.
In the meantime we want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas!

Sunday, August 1, 2010


Ni Hao Y'all

Don't miss this amazing blog and the very fun giveaway!

Here's little Miss in her pink glasses.

Oh, and she got a new charm on her bracelet to celebrate mastering the monkey bars.

Best of all, she's started reading this summer. As she heads into Kindergarten this fall I realized I didn't want someone else to get to have the joy of teaching her that, so we've been spending about 5-10 minutes a day doing "home school". It is so much fun to watch her meet all these developmental milestones. It is wonderful to get to share great books together. The other day she talked me into reading her 4 chapters of Milly Molly Mandy at lunch and several more at dinner.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Summer!'s been months since my last post. I guess it goes without saying how busy life is. Little Miss Wonderful has transformed in so many ways. She's really into rollerskating, hula hooping, swimming, 100 piece puzzles, back bends, and doing the splits. She has a little joke she likes to share whenever possible, "Don't tell anyone about this news, when cows laugh - milk comes out of they (should be their) nose!" She just thinks that is so funny.

At the end of the school year Abbey made a little treasure chest in her preschool class. Her teachers filled it with sweet treasures like a lei, seashell, gold coins, etc. There was one odd item that didn't seem to fit, a plastic ping-pong ball type eyeball. I didn't like it and so Abbey made a special point of always hiding it in places where it would surprise me or pop out on me. For two weeks she took it everywhere we went. Then she drew a very interesting picture that looked like an eye with rainbow stripes in it and eyelashes all around. She taped it up on the wall in my bedroom so that it would be right in front of me when I was in bed. We had to go to my eye doctor to get contacts and she was fascinated by the whole examination process. Then we had to go to her Dr. for a routine vision and hearing screening. She wasn't seeing well out of one eye and we were referred to a pediatric ophthalmologist. After this visit many people prayed for us as we were referred to a pediatric retinal specialist. We are so thankful that the Dr. told us she had a small congenital abnormality that did not need treatment. We got some sweet little pink Juicy Couture glasses that Abbey now wears.

In May Abbey went through Infant Swim Resource. It is a six week program with a ten minute swimming lesson each day. They teach a sequence of swim-float-swim and teach the children how to find a way out of the pool after being disoriented (being flipped over, having a wet piece of clothing dropped over their face, etc.) The last week they have to practice their survival skills with summer clothing and with winter clothing to simulate accidentally falling into water somewhere and having to find a way out. I was so proud of Abbey. It was so wonderful to watch her confidence grow and I could have never taught her all that she learned from her teacher. The program is for 6 month old's to 6 years. You can check it out here.

In June Abbey had her first ballet and tap recital. It was wonderful and she loved it. She's already asking about when she can get back up on stage. It was such a dream come true to have a sweet little girl up there beaming and dancing.

We are really enjoying a great book entitled More Milly, Molly, Mandy. These are such sweet stories set back in England in the early 1900's. If you are looking for a great chapter book to read with your little girl we highly recommend it. It's so fun to have extra time in the summer for lots of library trips and stacks of books. Abbey's favorite picture book right now is such a fun one, How To Get Me, The Bride. She just loves pretending about weddings.
We are enjoying lots of everyday moments like riding bikes in the park, eating breakfast for dinner, and having play dates with friends. We are expecting a busier month in August as we will be moving to a new home in our area and getting my class ready for a new school year. It's so exciting that Abbey will be starting Kindergarten at my school in the fall and that we will be right near each other each day. We are both so happy about that.

Tea at the Four Seasons

Church with mommy

Monday, April 5, 2010


Where did March go? Can it really be April already?

We are loving every moment of spring! Ducks are nesting next to our porch, gorgeous buds and blooms are everywhere, and lots of baby bunnies and squirrels are running around.
Abbey has been such a delight.

She's still quite focused on the Sound of Music, and has made a cross necklace decorated with beads and is saying she's the "Reverend Mother". Her prayers have really gone to a new dimension. This week as we were preparing things for church for Easter she began one of her prayers saying, "Lord, let's get this party started!" and then proceeded to pray for our pastor, the worship team, children's ministries, and "everyone who doesn't know the Lord". The other night around midnight I took her into the bathroom and she was totally asleep, eyes closed, and limp like a rag doll, but she kept repeating, "the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self control." It's such a joy to have all the seeds that have been planted in her heart blooming.

The Reverend Mother

Abbey with the Baroness

Abbey with Brigitte

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Savoring the Moments

Okay, I can't let February completely pass by without posting, and since March starts in a few minutes I will make this quick.
We are loving life and enjoying every moment together. I know I always say it can't get any better, and then somehow it does. Abbey is starting to ask me questions that really make me think, and I am loving the new level our conversations are going to, yet we still have plenty of silliness thrown in. Best of all is sharing everything spiritually. I love talking with her about the things that really matter, praying together, and hearing her sweet songs about the Lord. I am wondering what people in the grocery store and other places think as she is singing her heart out about the Fruit of the Spirit, a Joyful Heart is Like a Good Medicine, etc. She has truly got the joy down in her heart.
Abbey is currently loving a game called Great States Jr. It has a timer and you have to quickly find states on the map. She loves it! She is also excited about collecting quarters for the 50 States.
Other things we are enjoying together include lots of good books. She's particularly into Aesop's Fables (and listening to a Jim Weiss CD of them in the car), DK's First Encyclopedia of the Human Body, and lots of books about how things are made or how things work. The librarians have given me some pretty funny looks as we come in with our usual, "We'd like a book on how _______ are made." She loved some we checked out recently that showed how tennis shoes are made and what it's like to be a textile worker. And speaking of factories, she asked me to stay out of hers for several days because she was working on this....

It was so sweet. She made it and wrapped it all by herself and then gave it to me. With the little resources she has she manages to make and give a lot of cards and gifts.
Here's the sign for when her factory is closed...

I told her the other day that maybe she can run a factory when she grows up, but she said no, she just wants to be a mom. She's also told me that she's going to be a teacher at a Christian school
and that I can stay at home and take care of her babies, which she wants to adopt from China.

She loved CNY, especially the Lion Dancers. We were both excited to see girls on the Lion Dance team this time.

This is Abbey's first real homework assignment, which was an All About Me poster for her preschool. It felt a little surreal to have a school project to work on over the weekend. I am sure it was a taste of countless weekend's to come. I love the way she draws herself with hair sprouting out of her head and shooting to the ground. And now for a slew of other projects...

A very weet calendar she made me for Christmas at preschool...
And finally a map she drew and dictated for me what to write as captions. Click on it for details.