Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Norah L.

I had so much fun taking pictures of this new little one...and since Jason's family checks the blog, I wanted to get a sneak peak of the newest family member up right away. I know that this little girl will bring lots of smiles.

Carrie, your daughter is just exquisite. I had a blast.






Saturday, December 3, 2011

Baby Jameson

I had the pleasure of taking pics of one of the cutest babies I know. My cousin Whitney had her first baby in October and let me tell you...he's a keeper!

Since my family (and his) checks this blog regularily, I thought I would post a few pics of that little bundle of goodness...








Sunday, November 20, 2011

Trick Or Treat

Yes, I realize that it's November 20 and that Halloween was in October. I was gently reminded by my sister that I promised pics of the kids in their costumes and I hadn't delivered. It's good to have people in your life that will keep you on your toes! :)

...Let me bring you back to the day before Halloween...

24 hours to go...and costumes are just a thought in my head. No, seriously. I had pictures in my head, but no actual, tangible costumes to put on my kids. Jason's job that day was to fashion said costumes so I could finish them that evening. Well, as usual around here, we get a bit distracted and as nightfall came, we had 1 out of 4 costumes semi started. I told Jason he needed to stay up and finish his part so I could start mine right away in the morning.

12 hours to go...I woke up that morning to find that our project hadn't progressed any from the night before. Yikes! Less than 12 hours to go and I had a lot of work ahead of me. I broke out the exacto knife and started creating. I got out the spray paint and bathed them in a lovely shade of each child's choosing. I brought them into the house to dry as it was so foggy outside, you could literally see the water droplets in the air. Then panic set in. Within about 2 minutes, my entire house smelled like a spray paint can. It was aweful! I was forced to open the windows just to try to air it out. I quickly came to the conclusion that the only way they would dry was to be inside and since that wasn't going to be happening, I was in a pickle.

6 hours to go...No costumes for 4 children and we were becoming desperate. I didn't know what to do, so I started laughing like crazy. (Yeah, not that laughing really actually helps the matter) The irony was setting in. One year ago, I was scrambling to get costumes ready up until the bitter end and I vowed that the following year I would plan and be prepared. I was losing my marbles trying to figure out what to do.

Ella, being so creative, decided that she wanted to use her leftover birthday balloons, which were purple, to be a bunch of grapes. Ever tried stapling on balloons to a shirt? No easy, my friends...not easy. We finally got them all attached...just the right amount left after a few minor casualties. We went upstairs to show Jason and as Ella went into the room, she cut the corner a little too close...and POP! Hmmm....back to ground zero again.

I called around and found some costumes I could borrow from friends and as I did that...the sun came out. Oh...that lovely sun. I was so happy to see it! I quickly hauled out the costumes to dry and air out, knowing they still needed 2 more coats of paint. I quickly got to work and became more determined than ever.

We had to do a few change-ups at the end...but we managed to get each child a costume that they were excited to be in. It turned out to be a raving success. And I bet you are just dieing to see what each one wore...

Oh...just as a disclaimer...we were so excited to get out to start trick or treating that I forgot to take any pictures. Wait...before you sigh in frustration for leading you on...I did take pictures. The next day. Yep, I made them put their costumes on again just so I could snap a few. So if you are wondering why the costumes look a little worse for wear...it's because they had survived an evening of getting in and out of the trailer being pulled behind the 4 wheeler, delivering all the kiddos and their friends to houses upon houses.


Ella was a ballerina, Ben a red lego, Lily a purple lego, and Cora a mouse.


Not easy to get 4 kids to stand still and look at the camera. Especially with a lego ready to fall off at any moment.


Ben's costume? The bottom part of the lego connector fell off and disappeared before we even reached the first house. I sprayed another one just for your viewing pleasure. Unfortunately, the cover wasn't the right size so he had to hold it on for the pictures. Ha!


Heeheee, this picture makes me laugh. She loved being a lego.


And Miss Mouse? She couldn't figure out why on earth I was making her wear this again. Oooh, just seeing this picture makes me want to scoop her up and kiss her. Those cheeks get me every time.


They mangaed to get to every. house. in. the. development. Oh, yes they did. I'm pretty sure that we will have candy until next halloween.


Guess we'll have to ration this out or there might be tummy aches in our future.


Hmmmm....brush up on our sorting skills, do some candy math with addition and subtraction problems, and make some beautiful graphs.


And enjoy the big smiles all of this brings.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tuesday's Tidbits

The kids have been playing Veggie Tales cds a lot around here lately. I'm pretty sure that Larry the Cucumber's versions of a few fun 70's songs will forever be etched in my brain.

Another hot commodite right now is Veggie Tales: Bible Stories. Ben was at the table belting out a tune the other day...Jonah was a puppet...woohoo...yeah, he never really got it, sad but true. Jonah was a puppet...woooooohooooo. We all burst out laughing cause Jonah? He was a prophet...not a puppet. 

Before lunch, Ella announced she was done with the book she was reading just a few minutes earlier. I was dumbfounded that she had finished it so fast! I replied "You finished that chapter book about the lion? You just started it this morning!" She answered back "No, this was the one about the mummies in Egypt. I read the lion one right before that." So to my surprise, she had started and finished not one, but two chapter books before lunch.

As Lily was sitting next to me at the table, she leaned over and in the sweetest voice said "Mom....you're tute." There's nothing sweeter than hearing a little person tell you they think you are cute. :)

Ben asked me the other day "What if it rained lollipops?" Oh to be little and have such an imagination. I'm afraid that if it rained lollipops, I would be 10 pounds heavier.


Ben was talking about his birthmother in Korea and how little he must have been to fit in her tummy. Here's the conversation that transpired:
Lily: I wanna be in Daddy's tummy.
Ella: How will you get in Daddy's tummy?
Lily: Use tools.
Milk just about came out my nose.


Ella was learning the Pledge of Allegiance. I was busy working on it with her and we were just nailing down the ending.

...with liberty and justice for all.

She stopped, cocked her head, and in an inquistive voice asked me "Who is Liberty and Justice anyway?" We promptly went to the computer and learned the definitions of two new words to add to her vocabulary. She giggled at herself when she realized they weren't names of people.

We returned our library books today. With Ben reading books on his own and Ella mastering chapter books, we go through a lot of books these days. Would you believe I had 59 books to return?!? That amounted to three shopping bags full.

We were excited to put our outside christmas lights up this weekend. Out of 14 strings of lights, only 1 worked. How does that happen?!?


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Cheese Anyone?

I have more pics of halloween that I will post soon, but couldn't resist posting this one right now as a sneak peak to things that will make you smile.



If mice really looked just like this...my view of the rodents would change dramatically. Isn't she cute?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

My Mom had come down a couple of weeks ago. Words can't express how much this woman means to me and how much I enjoy just being in her presence. There's just something about spending time with her. She calms me, she grounds me, she makes me a better mom to my own kids. The other thing I know for certain: time always goes way too fast when I'm with her.

Posting this pic because it's too beautiful to keep to myself. I love to see my mom with my kids. It's inspiring and it makes my soul smile.

Wednesday's Ramblings

Jason was wearing a Detroit Lions shirt at the supper table. We started talking a bit about the shirt and Lily piped up "I don't like the Lions...I like the Cheetas."


Ben and Lily were busy playing in the playroom. I asked him "Whatcha' doing?" Ben answered "Just teaching Lily her manners." I guess someone's gotta do it. :)


I took Ella and Ben with me to run some errands. One of our stops was Joann Fabrics. They have all of their seasonal pinecones stacked up as you first enter the store. The overwhelming scent of cinnamon just about knocks a person over. Apparently I wasn't the only one who felt that way...Ben, in a way too loud voice, said "This place stinks...I wish I had noseplugs."


As I sit here typing this blog post, I am listening to Ella read both Ben and Lily a book. These are what sibling moments are made of. Oooh, just heard Ella say "Sit down or I'm not going to read anymore!" Maybe alls not hunky-dory afterall.

I made some hobakjeon for lunch today. The kids always, always love this korean dish. After gobbling it up, Ella asked me if there was more. When I replied that that's all I had made she informed me "Mom, you never make enough of this! I always want more."




Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wednesday's Ramblings

My parents were here for the weekend, and as always, funny things are bound to come out of my childrens' mouths. This trip was no exception.


Papa asked Lily if she liked cars. Her response: "No, I'm too young."


Ella: "I'm not a noodletarian, I'm a vegetarian." This girl could live off of veggies.


I bought a bag of lettuce at the grocery store. Ella spotted it and begged for a big leaf of romaine. Jason washed it and handed it to her saying "here's your lettuce." Ella replied "It's not lettuce...it's a leaf of yumminess!"


Grandma had made her rounds, saying goodbye to all her grandbabies. As is tradition in our family, goodbyes take forever. So as she was rounding again, getting in some extra hugs and kisses, she came upon Lily. Grandma said "Goodbye, Lily, I love you!" Lily replied back "I already sayed it. Don't ask me again" and then flashed her smile and twinkled her eyes.


Upon composing this post, I asked Ben (since I hadn't written anything down) if there was something funny he said that I had laughed about. He replied "I don't know...I'm just not funny."


Lily's Hanbok

This year in school, we are Galloping the Globe. It's a fabulous curriculum and we are having so much fun with it. Every two weeks we "gallop" to another country to learn all that we can about it. It's a unit study which means we are able to incorporate almost every subject right into our country. A couple of weeks ago, the country was South Korea. And since that hits so close to home for us, we had a mighty fun time researching and learning all we could about it.

We learned that Seoul is the capital of South Korea and also located all the birth cities of the Ben, Lily, and Cora. We practiced and worked on our Korean language. We learned about tea fields, the life of a family in South Korea, their homes, what they eat, what they do for jobs, etc. We learned how to play Korean hopscotch and drew big boards out on the driveway with sidewalk chalk. We cooked and ate some delicious meals...sampling some new ones and noshing on a bunch of our favorites.

And at the end, we got out the hanboks. Hanboks are traditional Korean clothes. Jason couldn't resist snapping a picture of Lily in hers. She received it from her FosterMom whom she lovingly refers to as Omma. 감사합니다 엄마. (Thank You, Omma)

Trouble in Blogger Land

Sorry for the delay in posting, I got on a few days ago and Blogger wasn't interested in being my friend. I tried, without success, to get some pics to load and after 30 minutes, gave up. Hoping things will go easier today. :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thursday's Thoughts

Lily was asked what she wants to be when she grows up. After much thought, she responded with "Hello Kitty".

As we were walking home from playing at our friend's house, Ella asked me "Is it time to eat yet because I'm having a hungry thought."

Ben can't decide whether he wants to be a fireman or a policeman for Halloween. Think his uncles are having any influence on this boy?!?

Ella decided she wants to be a chef when she grows up. When asked what she can cook, Lily quickly chimed in "hot dog".

In response to her little sister's tantrum, I overheard Ella respond "you've flipped my limit!"

After cleaning the house from top to bottom, repainting a few rooms in the house, and making sure everything was perfect for our Korean guests, Lily decided she wanted to show them her shoes. Without any notice, she led them to the mud room closet. Upon investigating what was going on, I found 3 people, all dressed up, on hands and knees with their heads in the shoe bin. ...And no, I didn't think to clean there. Thanks Lily.





Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Sisterly Love

Can't you just feel it?

The bond that is forming between these two?


I guess there's another "smitten kitten" in our house other than just me.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

안녕하세요 엄마 (Hello Omma!)

안녕하세요 엄마, 아빠, 언니가

Lily wanted to make a video to send to you.

video

She wants to know if you can send her a video or an email back with a picture. :)

Pretty in Pink

This little one here...loves to be outside.




No matter the weather...



Pushing her baby in the stroller...



Smiling and giggling all the while...

I love this little one...

Friday, October 14, 2011

Tinkerbell

Ella was invited to a friend's birthday party last month. She was so excited to find out she needed to dress up for it.

What little girl would turn that down?

Her costume of choice?

Tinkerbell.

And no, Tinkerbell doesn't wear a crown. But that's the beauty of being 7 and getting to be just who you want to be.

And although she still enjoys dressing up as Tinkerbell...I couldn't help but notice how much more grown up she has become.


...How much more independent my "not-so-little" little girl is.

...How little she needs my help. How little she even wants my help.

And even though she's growing up with each passing day...I still get lost in those baby blues every time I look at them.

This girl will forever have my heart, no matter how old she gets.

Wow...What A Hiatus...

First...apologies all around. Life has been crazy busy this past month which has led to zero new posts. 'Nuff about that.

Second...no more jibba jabba...post some pics, will ya?!?


These were taken a few weeks back. Did you know that running in the rain is more fun with one flip flop and one rain boot?

Ella has a habit of just grabbing the first two shoes her hands come across in the shoe bin and heading out the door. I guess I should just be happy that this time it happened to be two of her own shoes.


A little boogie-woogie helps too. Notice the pointer finger...she's gettin' jiggy wit it.

And Ben? Well, he dances to his own drum...or rather walks around with his eyes closed.

I couldn't stop laughing at how different these two enjoyed the rain.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sunsets

I love a beautiful sunset.

Taken from my front porch.

Our New School Room

With what little spare time having four children allows, Jason and I have embarked upon a whopper of a project.

Without keeping you in further suspense, let's get on with the unveiling...


Jason watched the kids one evening while I traveled down to Ikea.

Oh, Ikea....how I do love you.

I spent a little time three hours figuring, re-figuring, drawing out ideas, and taking measurments. In the end, I think I came up with a great solution that would fit the needs of our family. I struggled to loaded up the van and drove my treasures home. The next morning, the unpacking and assembling began.


I had a little help...


And some very excited little people.

They were ready to jump right in, get to work, and help get our new room up and running.


Ben and Ella were each in charge of helping to build their own desk chairs. Gotta love Ella's technique.


Turned out...doing things right-side up really was easier.


A little blurry...but you get the idea. Hired Help doesn't come cheap these days. I had to put up with lots of ridiculous faces.


Even Cora was convinced she had something to offer.




Okay...so some kids were more helpful than others.




Ella now has a love for hammers like her dad.




With four sets of drawers for each child...there were a lot of pieces and lots to assemble.

It took most of the day.

And once completed, it was time to pull school supplies from every nook and cranny in the house. It felt so good to get it all in once place. And who doesn't love a good organization project?!?




A place for everything and everything in it's place. I stepped back and surveyed what we had accomplished and I was elated.


Four sides for four kids. Each with their own set of drawers for their work. Each far enough away from each other to avoid fights friendly disagreements. A place to call their own.


I got right to work decorating our new space. Making it feel inviting for little ones.

Notice our "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" tree...the kids were really excited about it since they have fallen in love with this book.

A told B, and B told C...
I'll beat you to the top of the coconut tree!
...Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,
Will there be enough room?


And with taking on the challenging task of learning Korean, I found these posters at Kyobo Bookstore in Seoul. I figured we could use all the help we can get.


And how did it all work for our first day of school yesterday?



I couldn't have been happier with the arrangement or how the day went.


It was a smashing success.