Friday, November 30, 2007

Our Little Climber

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Yes my Mia is a climber. She climbs everything. She climbs our kitchen drawers and can almost make it to the counter. She climbs the stairs in seconds flat. She has been found in a number of precarious situations that put the fear of God in my heart. We were at Chuck and Susan's last night for our weekly KID NATION party (changed it from Wednesday to Thursday so we could watch the TIVO'ed one and start earlier) and they had a ladder out because they were decorating their Christmas Tree. Needless to say, my mission throughout the whole evening was to keep Mia from climbing the ladder. I let her play a little but that girl scares the heck out of me when her foot slips off and she barley catches herself from falling to the hard cold travertine--ugg!! Anyway, as always, I had my handy little camera ready so I took a few pics. One of them I was playing with that color feature so it looks kind of weird.

By the way, I am sitting on my couch at 9am drinking my coffee and it is totally raining outside!! This is the first rain of the season here in Southern California and it is actually raining pretty good. We get VERY LITTLE rain here so when it actually comes down we all snuggle up and act as if it were below freezing with a fire in the fireplace. Not that it is that cold- it is cold for us-- maybe 55 to 60 degrees-- but it gives us reason to snuggle and feel as if it were actually fall. Another note about the rain that many of you from other states will laugh at is that when this strange thing called water falls from the sky, drivers in Southern California lose all their senses and literally forget how to drive. I guarantee there will be accidents all over the roads today and if I get on the freeway people will probably be driving at a snales pace. This drives me nuts but again this strange precipitation thing causes us all to lose our abilities. Another funny thing is that it is raining pretty good but nothing like what most of you are probably use to. On the news here in Southern California the top story is "STORM WATCH 2007!!!!" Literally they call this a storm and people are glued to the news to watch for "NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN THE STORM". I swear it is true and it is so funny because Kevin grew up in Canada and thinks we here in So Cal are ridiculous. We are total wimps and bundle our kids for a cold day when it is expected to only get to 60 degrees for the day. Anyway- I know we are wimps- what do you do??

Anyway, have a great weekend!!
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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

A Fun Packed Day!!!

What a jam packed day we had. It started out with Mia's 1 year doctors appointment at 9am. When we arrived they informed me that Mia was not covered on our insurance - Wonderful surprise!! So I spent the next 40 minutes trying to iron the mess out. Come to find out Blue Cross had some glitch back in September and many newly added patients were deleted. Mia just happened to be one of them. We got it all figured out and proceeded with her appointment. Our little one has grown-- vertically that is. She is now 29 inches and in between the 25th and 50th %ile -- YAAAA!!! Her weight is a little lower. She weighed 17 pounds 13 ounces which puts her below the 5th %ile -- YIKES!!!! The doctor is not concerned at all because her weight is trending upward and she has chub and eats well. So, I guess she is good but wow is she light. Maybe she will be tall and thin-- I can live vicariously through her - haha!! Anyway, that was out early morning.

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After the doctors appointment Mia and I went to meet Kailee and Karen at Disneyland. As always, we had a great time! It is great that Karen and I have season passes as we can jump over to Disney for just a few hours between nap times. The girls really seem to enjoy themselves and Kailee is just really getting to a fun age that she "gets it". Mia is still a bit young to completely "get it" but she has a lot of fun nonetheless. I totally enjoy having Karen and Kailee to get together with on a regular basis. I feel blessed to have them in our lives.

Anyway, we came home, finished most of the Christmas decorating, ate dinner and here I am. Hope all of you in Blogger land are doing well!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Start of The Season!!

First let me begin with my favorite picture of the group. It is just so cute of Mia and it is so her personality right now. She is just full of wonder and smiles. I just love this picture!

Last night we started decorating for Christmas. We are only part of the way done but I took a few pictures while we were decorating. We are only 3/4 done with the inside of the house and still have the outside to do but it is always a fun time decorating. We have not decorated the tree yet but I will take lots of pictures of that event when it happens.

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Tonight we had our family pictures done. None of them came out great but there were a few that we can use. I will post those soon. While waiting for the sitting I took a few cute pictures of Mia. The sitting was chaotic as always. I just don't know how anyone can get 5 humans with 3 little humans to smile and look jovial at the same time. It is literally impossible. So, with the help of a few nice workers and a lot of mommy jumping up and down to try to get the little humans to smile, I think we got a few decent ones. Of course in each picture at least one of the kids looking odd with a goofy smile-- but at least it is a smile. After the photos we went out to the mall which the "snow" was falling (snow = soap bubbles-- hay we are in Southern California- soap bubbles are about as good as it is gonna get around here!) Anyway, we hung out for a few and then had dinner at California Pizza Kitchen. We then went home, put kids to bed and here I am- on my computer :)

Anyway, here are some pics of this evening.

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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thanksgiving 2007!!!

We have a tradition of going to Central California to my family up there to celebrate Thanksgiving. It is always a fun packed weekend that is eagerly anticipated each year! It was even more exciting this year since we had Mia to enjoy her first Thanksgiving with our family!!We drove up in the RV on Wednesday night and went to my cousins for Thanksgiving. It was a great time full of wonderful food and lots of family. The kids had a jump house and crafts and it was just a wonderful day!! The next day we have a tradition of going to my grandma's land up in the hills (700+ acres in the foothills of the western Sierra's) and shooting guns. The boys look forward to this every year and we always have a great time. While up in the hills there are a bunch of pomegranate trees on my grandma's land so we always pick a ton of them and my brother uses them for sauces once home (he is a chef). The pomegranates were WONDERFUL this year and we just stood there forever and ate a ton of them. They are so sweet and juicy but they stain like crazy. Mia loved them but her poor little sweater just got covered in juice. Lets hope Spray and Wash works!! That evening my cousin had another get together at her house and we went over there for more food and fun. We got home late and the kids just passed out. We were going to do the annual sausage stuffing party at my cousins house today (Saturday) but we were just too exhausted so we took an easy morning and packed up, went into town to visit grandma and then started the 3+ hour drive home. It was such a wonderful time and we thank all of our cousins for making it so special for us each year (we are the only cousins that live out of town).

Yes, these are the only pictures I have from ACTUAL Thanksgiving. I totally forgot to get my camera out of my purse and towards the end of the night realized I had not even got a picture of Mia in her Thanksgiving dress. So, I threw the bow back in Mia's hair (not very well I must add) and had my mom hold her so I could get a few pics. I also took some pics of all the kids making crafts and a pic of my sister and dad as well as the best darn yams I have ever had!!
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These are of us shooting and picking pomegranates.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

6 Months as a Family!!!

Today we celebrate 6 months with out little girl! 6 months ago today Mia was placed in our arms forever and our lives would never be the same. 6 months ago today our family became complete!!

Here is 6 months worth of Mia.

Mia at 6 months

This picture was taken just minutes after returning to our hotel with Mia for the first time. We had her for maybe 2 hours at this point. She was so sweet and never cried and we thought she was the most beautiful little girl ever. She was tentative but began to open up over the next couple weeks!!

Mia at 7 months
This picture is after we had our little girl for 1 month (a little over). She was really coming out of her shell. She was happy and fun and enjoyed and adapted to our fast paced life style very easily. She also loved her brothers to death!!

Mia at 8 months
This is when we had Mia for 2 months (approx). She was growing in every way.

Mia at 9 months
After about 3 months of having Mia as part of our family she really started to blossom. She was crawling and pulling up on everything and was just a happy little baby. Her personality was really shining and she seemed to really be comfortable with our family.

Mia at 10 months
At this point we had Mia for about 4 months. I would say that by the 4 month mark she was perfectly well adapted and adjusted. She was Mia. She was happy and loving and mischievous and chatty and all the things that are a part of her personality. Looking back I would say 4 months was a key time in that she became completely at ease and her true personality was there for all to see.

Mia at 11 months
At this point we had Mia for 5 months and from 4 months on she has just been herself. Fussy at times, happy most of the time and just a joy in every way. At 11 months she was starting the beginnings to walking and it turned out she began totally walking on her own the day after she turned 1 year. She continued to be the most chatty baby I have ever seen-- talking constantly-- but then again she is a part of our family and "chatty" is just a prerequisite for being in our family.

Mia at 12 months
This picture was taken just a few days ago right before she had been a part of our family for 6 months. Mia is just Mia. She is part of our family and it is hard to remember life without her. I do remember sleeping in but again-- that is a faint memory. Mia is our perfect Mia and I cant imagine not having our little girl in our lives. She is perfect in every way and today we celebrate a half year with her in our lives!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Dumont Dunes in November

We took a pre Thanksgiving trip to Dumont since the boys are out of school this week. We had a great time but I pretty much forgot I even had a camera and it was not until the 2nd to last day that I remembered I needed to document the trip. I did take a few pictures but the boys were off riding so I did not get many pictures of them. Anyway, we had a Dance Party with the kids and I have that on video. The weather was perfect and was probably the best weather we have ever had in Dumont. It was in the low 80's and we were able to wear short sleeve shirts the whole time. There was no wind and just the beauty of the desert.

We are off tomorrow morning to head up to Central California. Today we are just doing laundry and getting ready for tomorrow. I will post our Thanksgiving pictures as soon as we return.

I hope you all have an amazing Thanksgiving. We all have so much to be thankful for and I thank God for the many blessings in our lives.

Dumont Dance Party!!

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Owen's 2nd Grade Class Performance

Owen Had a class performance on Thursday night (sorry it has taken so long to get them on). It was very cute and Owen was one of only 3 kids in his class that had a speaking part and he did a great job. Unfortunately, my dropshopts is down and I cant load video and most of what I took at the perfomance is video so I only have a few pictures to post-- uggg!! Anyway Owen was very cute and was very proud of himself.

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Update- I got dropshots working so here is some video of his perfomance-- cute!!

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Leaving out of town-- again!!

I just wanted to let everyone know that we are leaving today to go to Dumont again from today till Tuesday and then we get back and on Wednesday we take off for Thanksgiving in Central California with my family. We wont be home until Saturday. The boys have all next week off so we wanted to do some fun trips. While I plan to take my computer and will attempt to post pictures, it may not be very easy. So, don't think I have disappeared-- I'm here, just not at home :)

On a side note, you all rock with regards to the mommy guilt thing. I just so appreciate all the amazingly supportive wonderful woman who are a part of my cyber life. You guys rock and I truly appreciate all your words of encouragement!!

Another side note. I saw on a new friends blog (hi Ali) these adorable hair bow holders. If anyone has followed my blog for a while you know I love bows and Mia has a ton.

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This cute little invention is created by a SAHM and they are adorable. Take a look-- I'm totally getting one!!!

So, I will try to post soon. You all have a wonderful weekend and a great week. We all have so much to be thankful for living here in a land of wealth. We are all truly blessed.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Mommy Guilt

OK, I must ask you all if any of you mommy's struggle with MOMMY GUILT. Mommy guilt is something I have struggled with since my boys were little. You never feel like you are enough. I have always felt like I am too short with the boys and that I yell at them too much. I hate that about myself. I try to keep from boiling over when things go wrong but inevitably, I lose it. Then, I have the guilt's. I hate the guilt's but they are a regular part of my life. When the boys were little I use to think I was the worst mom in the world. I would look at friends from church that were so patient and kind and loving and I use to compare myself thinking I was just a HORRIBLE mom. I still struggle with that because I am constantly comparing myself to others. The problem is that what I see on the outside with others is not necessarily what is going on behind closed doors. Not that what is going on behind closed doors is so bad, but I'm a sure many others yell at their kids or are short with them or do not stimulate them or provide them with every middle class opportunity that we are expected to. It is just hard to feel like you are doing everything you can for your kids. I feel guilty that I don't involve them in enough extracurricular activities and then when I put them in something I feel guilty that they are over scheduled and that they don't have enough time to be kids. Then I feel guilty that I don't spend enough one on one with them and that I am too busy doing my day to day stuff. Then I feel guilty about me being on the phone too much and on my computer too much and that I didn't do this or that or this or that--- ugggg-- the guilt is just everywhere!!!! While I think I am a fun mom and a loving mom, I also think I am a demanding mom and a yelling mom (when I get upset)and much of the time I feel like I am just mad at my kids. With the day to day and the getting off to school and then homework and activities and then dinner and then showers and getting ready for bed - I just feel like it is a rat race and that I am always pushing my kids and that I am always mad at them. I hate feeling like that. I don't want my kids to remember their childhood as negative. I don't want them to remember me as a pushy mom who yells-- I want them to remember the other part of me-- the loving and fun part. I know there is an element of self control that I need to have when I feel like I am going to explode but it is so hard to have that self control when you are in the moment. This is a constant battle I have struggled with for over 9 years and something I am sure I will continue for years-- uggg!! Any of you out there have any suggestions?? Any of you out there have the mommy guilt like I do?

Christy :)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Disneyland November 12

We went to Disneyland yesterday with Laila and her her kids and my sister Cassie. We had a great time but got home late and we had a tough morning this morning trying to get the boys off to school. We missed the bus but I got them to school on time-- yaaa!!

Disney is always fun and we were so excited that most of the Christmas decor was up and when Disneyland is decorated for Christmas it is truly magical!!! If any of you followed my blog for a long time there was a picture we took of the boys in front of the Christmas tree last year and there was a little Asian girl right next to them in the picture. I use to look at that picture and dream of the day that the little girl in the picture was Mia. Well, yesterday I had another dream realized when I got to take a picture of my kids in front of the tree. Not that the pictures are that great, but this was a major dream accomplished-- ALL MY KIDS!!!

Anyway, I had so many pictures that I had to separate them into three slide shows. The first are the Christmas Tree pics. The second is at California Adventure in the Brother Bear Play Land and the third is other miscellaneous pics of the day.

The Tree Pics:

Brother Bear Play Land:

Misc Pics:

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Boy Scout Trip To El Mirage

We had one busy weekend and it is not over at this point. I thought I would do a quick upload so I can get some pics on the blog but we still have a busy day tomorrow. The boys had a Boy Scout trip to a dry lake bed "El Mirage" about 45 min from out house to shoot off rockets. We took our RV after school on Friday and headed out. We had a great time shooting off rockets all day on Saturday. Kevin even shot off his Porta Potty rocket (see pics) that was titled "you can shoot the crap out of it"-- and he did!!

We went to Church on Sunday morning and after we had a family birthday party at my parents house for my nephew Nathan who was turning 5. It was a lot of fun including playing "musical chairs" which included an adult version and a kid version. Quite fun!!

Anyway, after the birthday we met a bunch of our camping friends at the mall and did dinner and a movie. We just got home and tomorrow we are heading out to do a trip to Disneyland (we have season passes) since we all have the day off (Happy Veteran's Day to all the veterans!!).

So, the weekend is not over and I will have more to post tomorrow night. Until then, enjoy the pics!!

Some cute pics:

Nathan's Birthday

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Ohhh the ever expanding waistline--UGGG!!!

Anyone else out there in bloggerland dealing with an expanding waistline?? I hate feeling uncomfy in your own skin but I am there right now. I hate the fidgeting and pulling on your clothes because they fit a little tighter-- ugggg-- I hate it!!! I hate putting on something that feels just a tad different and it bugs you all day. I lost some weight in China back in May and I swear I have been on a steady incline since. I don't weigh because it depresses me too much, so I just go by how my clothes fit and up till recently I have not noticed a big difference but the last week or so I am noticing a slight tightening and it is driving me nuts!! I just need to stop eating whatever I want and actually pay attention to what I put in my mouth. I don't do diets very well because if I think I cant have something-- I obsess on wanting that thing. So, what tends to work best for me is just cutting down and being conscious of not putting everything in my mouth. Usually I can take off a few pounds by doing that-- the trick is to start doing that!! So, since I am posting on it on my blog I figure I need to start working on getting a few pounds off-- NOW!! I'm not looking to be a size 2. Heck no!! I could never be that skinny. I am taller (5 feet 7 inches) and I have big bones (I know everyone likes to say they have big bones but I really do-- my foot is a 9 1/2 and my hands are big- got my dads genes) so I know I will never be tiny. I am happy when I am a size 8 and when I got home from China I was easily a size 8 and a comfy 8 at that. Now I am a comfy 10 which I am OK with normally but I hate that things seem to be getting a bit tight. So, maybe take off 5 to 10 pounds and I should be OK-- right?? Uggg I hate this subject. I swear I so envy those little petite woman (or tall and thin) woman who do not have to struggle with weight. I have always wished I could be a tiny little thing who can wear anything and look good. Oh well, so much for wishing. At least my daughter will be a tiny little thing who will probably be able to wear anything. I can live vicariously though her- just kidding!! If she were a bio kid she would be HUGE like my boys. Kevin is 6'2 and I'm big so our kids tend to be HUGE(both boys were 28 pounds at a year- Mia is 17 pounds at a year)!! Anyway, I think I will start working on the cutting back thing today. Ive already had 32 ounces of coffee and a chicken soft taco from Del Taco so I will be conscious of what else I put into my stomach today-- Sounds like a plan!!!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Bass Pro Shop Take 3 or 4 or 5???

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We took another trip to Bass Pro again the other night and took some cute pics of Mia in front of the massive fish tank. I love the pic of her with her mouth open. It is so cute. She is just a character!!

Owen enjoying himself as usual!!

OK, not the best pic but I think it is such a funny pic of Mia. I love that mouth open grin. It just makes me smile. I left out the pic of Owen trying to lift Mia and it looked like she was being choked. While it made me laugh I didn't want to alarm others that my son is trying to choke my daughter so I begrudgingly left it out! Too bad, it was totally funny!!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Mia's New Chair & Ottoman

Mia got so many wonderful gifts for her birthday. She was lavished with tremendous gifts from all our friends and family and she, and we, send a heartfelt THANK YOU to all!! Once gift that mommy wanted for Mia was this cute little chair and ottoman from Tottlerock It is so darn cute and it has her name on the chair in Chocolate Brown. It is the perfect size and it came in the mail today!! Daila and Larry (Laila's parents) were so generous in giving Mia this chair and ottoman and Mia LOVES IT!!!!! Here are some cute pics of Mia in the chair-- WARNING-- Mia is a little ragamuffin in these pictures. She squished her dinner all over her head and then was allowed to crawl around the garage while Daddy and Owen were building a boat out of wood. She looks so dirty but the pics are still cute.

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I took a little video of Mia. She was in quite a mood tonight. She was just cracking me up being so silly. So here is the funny video!

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Sunday, November 4, 2007

Mia's Big Day!!!

Mia has had quite the week. She had her birthday on Monday, learning to walk on Tuesday, her first Halloween on Wednesday, her big party on Saturday and friends over on Sunday-- needless to say, she (as well as mommy and daddy) is pooped. We had her big Birthday/ Welcome Home Party on Saturday afternoon. We never did a baby shower for Mia because it was summer and everyone was so busy so we decided to make it a combo party-- Birthday and Welcome Home! Mia looked as cute as can be and we had about 95 of our closest friends and family over to our house for the party. It was the biggest party we ever had at our house. There were a TON of people but we had a wonderful time. I seriously could not have put this party on without my wonderful husband Kevin but also Laila, my mom, my brother (who is a chef and cooked) and Cassie (my sister). It was a HUGE production complete with a jumpy, a craft, a ton of food and lots of friends and family. Mia loved the cake and dug right in. I put a video of her eating the cake and us singing to her (sorry it is so dark-- it was already dark when we did cake). She did great with the party and is just a social girl but when she gets tired-- its only mommy or daddy! Anyway, we packed it up at about 11pm and went to church this morning. We then went to my parents for pizza after church and then we had a bunch of our camping friends over again tonight to finish up the rest of the food. We still had the jumpy tonight so the kids enjoyed that. The whole weekend was a great time and we were so happy to finally be able to celebrate the birthday and the homecoming of our little Angel!!!

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Video of THE SONG and THE CAKE:

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Mia eating her cake:

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Mia walking at my parents house after church on Sunday:

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