Saturday, August 22, 2009


Kind of makes me wonder what things will be like when she's a teenager.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Of things purple, pink, and sparkly

If you've met Lindy, she's probably told you her favorite colors are, "Pink, purple, and red." She may have also told you her favorite animals are, "Horses, ponies, and unicorns." You also probably know she's all about the sparkle and shine.

Well, the other day we were making an "in and out" trip into a particular store to make a return. I was not going to stop and look at anything. Alas, the sirens of the shoes were working against me and wooed my daughter to the above shown shoes. In a matter of moments it was apparent we weren't leaving the store without them. She had taken off her sandals and was prancing around on her tip toes in these. She was in love.

I admit I am a bargain shopper. I look for sales and rarely pay full price--especially when it comes to Lindy (and me) because it just seems silly to me since they grow so quickly. These shoes were not on sale and they were the only pair. I was at a tough spot here. The practical side of me told me to not give in but I knew it was purple and pink perfection in her mind and I'd have a very disappointed little girl if we had to walk away.

I guess you know I bought the shoes...I did the quick, "Are you sure they fit, do they feel comfortable, I don't want to hear they hurt your feet later" speech. She doesn't ask for things when we're out (usually), so I also made sure to tell her this was NOT going to be a common practice.

While I questioned my decision at the time, I am glad I bought them. She has danced and pranced around in them for the past week and has declared her love for them many times, and more importantly her thanks. She's so smitten she's even asked to wear them to bed and has worn them with non-matching outfits. YIKES!

It is likely pink and purple and red won't always be her favorite colors, so I'm going to enjoy these pinkalicious and purplicious moments while they're here.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

China Camp 2009

One of the highlights of Lindy's summer was to attend China Camp during the last week of July. Over the past 18 months or so, I've been fortunate to meet a really cool group of women in the area who have been blessed by adoption and who all have Chinese daughters--most about six months younger than Lindy. Early in the summer, Shawna, one of those mommies, said she wanted to put on a China Camp for the girls as a way to teach them about their Chinese heritage, as well as grow their friendships with one another. Well I already knew Shawna is creative, organized, hard-working and a go-getter but I was BLOWN away by the amount of effort and planning she put into making China Camp super special for the girls and mommies, too. For three days from 9:30-1:00'ish, we gathered at Shawna's house for a host of activities, games, arts and crafts, and lunch. Highlights included:
  • Using a map to locate and mark the province and city each girl is from
  • Making Chinese fans, lanterns, and plates
  • Having a dragon dance
  • Playing games
  • Making (and eating) Chinese dumplings
  • Learning about three cultures in China and praying that they someday would know Jesus
  • Eating Chinese noodle soup, lettuce wraps, and moon cakes
  • Learning about panda bears
  • Feeding the dragon with chopsticks
  • Show and Tell of something from each girl's province
  • Learning to get along, share, work as a team, and be sweet friends
Lindy's turn to lead the dragon dance and wear the coveted dragon head

The dragon boat relay race

The relays turned into a bit of a contact sport. Lindy, that'll be a 15 yard penalty for pulling on Ava Claire's tee...

Story time with Miss Shawna. Love Grace Lin books!

Making colorful Chinese lanterns

Showing off her Chinese lantern and fan

Enjoying Chinese noodle soup

Lily showing a picture of a panda during Show and Tell. Each girl brought something native to her province.

Lindy showing Maliah her silk embroidery from Hunan

Olivia showing off her embroidery ball

What's going to work??? Teamwork!!!

Using chopsticks to "feed" the dragon during the relay race

Making Chinese plates or is it china???

Making Chinese dumplings

Eating the dumplings...YUMMY...

The girls...
(On the ground) Lily,
Seated (L to R) Lindy, Ava Claire, & Olivia,
(last row L to R) Sioban, Maliah, & Libby

My gift from God (and China)

Having tea for the first time. Thankfully, decaffeinated!!!

More tea please...

What's a tea party without sweets???

Pure sweetness enjoying pure sweetness

Learning about the legend of the red thread and getting a red thread bracelet.

The girls enjoying a video about panda bears

It was three days of non-stop fun and activity. Thank you so much, Shawna, for being the hostess with the mostess.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

"I saw that going differently in my mind"

Wow! Why did I let myself get so behind on this? I'm really paying for it now.

One of the things we were excited about this summer was putting Lindy into swim lessons and the prospect of her learning how to swim or at least learn some basics. I am not a swimmer and Don is not a strong swimmer, so having Lindy learn how to swim is super important to both of us. She usually really enjoys being in the water, so we thought for sure she'd love the experience and be really pumped about learning to swim.

One of my favorite movies is Hitch. I laugh like it is a new movie EVERY time I watch it. One of my favorite quotes is when Hitch says, "I saw that going differently in my mind" after a botched first date with Sara. I am the QUEEN of getting my feelings hurt, being disappointed, and let down because I envision how I think things should go and what should be said. It is a huge character flaw of mine and it leads to a lot of disappointment. It is something I've become acutely aware of over the last two or three years and it is also an area of my life I'm trying to improve. In keeping with my struggle, NOTHING, I mean NOTHING could've prepared me for the tremendous battle I endured for two weeks. We thought she'd love it. Instead, I'm thinking this was the hardest two weeks of parenting I've encountered. I am fully aware that says a lot and the huge blessings attached to that statement but still I was befuddled, bewildered, and beaten down after it all.

For two weeks I watched my normally easy-going, "whatever," girl fret and be overcome with anxiety and fear. She'd wake up early and cry for four solid hours until her lesson. She would come up with dozens of "what if" scenarios and it was obvious she was petrified. For all but the last two days, she cried the entire time during the lesson. She never threw a fit, never refused to participate but was so miserable the entire time. I wanted to acknowledge her fears and anxieties in a loving way but yet help her try to overcome them. She was a mess. I was a mess. I felt so helpless. She doesn't know how to swim yet but other people have assured me it just takes time. I'm not sure how we'll get there but hopefully we'll get there eventually--just not this year. Here are some shots of the week.

First day. No tears--yet. Just a bit anxious but still open to the experience.

First day. Not loving it so much now.

Second to last day. No tears while using the noodle. Not sure how the breakthrough happened but it did!

They always ended class by jumping off the diving board in the big pool. She didn't jump but was thrown into the pool.

A rare non-crying shot. This was the last day. I think that is the face of relief.

A little celebratory sugar and bling for persevering

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Colorado Cousin Camp

View from top of Don's parents' driveway

I'm trying to catch up with blogging on all my blogs as it has been a long time. Stop by Osborn Odds 'N Ends and Make Room For Mei Mei for more family information...I'll be doing lots of updates over the next few days.

On July 5th, Lindy and I traveled to Estes Park, Colorado to escape the horrid heat and spend time visiting Lindy's Grandma & Grandpa Osborn, her Aunt Michelle, Aunt Anne, and cousins Jake, Ryan, Brooke, Livi, and Sadie.
Kids outnumbered the adults, so it was a busy, lively, active week as you might imagine! The weather felt wonderful and it was actually warmer than I had anticipated but it was lovely! Lindy doesn't play outside a lot here during the summer because it is so hot. In fact today she said, "I never get to play outside, Mommy. I hate (is that word allowed?) that it is so hot outside. It isn't fair. Maybe come spring..." Anyway, that was a really nice thing about the week--knowing she could go outside, it was safe, and it was literally a breath of fresh air. Lindy tried her hand for the very first time on a little bike with training wheels. At first her little peanut legs couldn't even push the pedals. By the end of the week, she couldn't wait to eat breakfast, brush her teeth and get out to ride the bike. I was so proud of her determination and I think you can tell by the pictures, she was pretty proud, too!

Livi & Lindy...They are only a couple weeks apart but there's a bit of a size difference...

Not even strong enough to push here...

Having fun on the porch

So proud!

Lindy's grandma planned several activities and outings during the week. One day she planned a picnic at a local park right next to the lake. It was pretty fun until the rain and strong winds came.

Pure bliss

Taking shelter from the rain

One of the days we were there we went to a parade to welcome the rodeo coming to town. The kids loved hearing the bands, seeing the horses, and watching the various marchers. I had quite a treat when a horse had a big sneeze and I caught the effects of it in my hair. Aunt Michelle got some of it, too. It was GROSS and I don't think I had laughed that hard or been that embarrassed in a really long time. A friend told me that it is good luck to be sneezed on by a horse. I'm still waiting for that so called "luck!" NO pictures were taken of that lovely episode, thankfully.

Grandma and Aunt Anne with the kids

If you've ever seen the movie The Shining (CREEPY), than you might recognize the Stanley Hotel. It is an Estes Park landmark and it actually just celebrated its 100th anniversary during the July 4th weekend. One afternoon Anne, Michelle, Jake, Ryan, and I went to take a ghost tour. It was quite interesting to hear about Stephen King's inspiration for writing the book, as well as all the non-paying visitors who frequent the hotel...Doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo...(Hear Twilight Zone music...)

The front of the hotel

Room 213 (I think). This is where it all started.

The view of town from the hotel

Back during Christmas when we were up in Estes, we drove to Rocky Mountain National Park to see Bear Lake. It just so happens we went during a major windstorm and the sub-zero temps and 60-80 mph winds made it impossible to see anything while we were there. This time our trip to Bear Lake was much calmer, warmer, and scenic.

Sure we can get a snapshot of the lake and all the cousins. No problem!

Bear Lake

Aunt Michelle with Ryan, Jake, & Brooke

Aunt Anne with Livi & Sadie

Me and Lindy

Excited to find a patch of snow and to engage in a snowball fight

Grandma & Lindy on the bus down the mountain

Grandpa didn't get to do all the fun stuff but he did spoil the kids with ice cream!

Grandma and Grandpa, thanks for letting us invade your house for Cousin Camp!