Friday, April 17, 2015

HAPPY WEEKEND! AND MORE PHOTOS FROM EASTER




I noticed this morning that it has been over a year now since I started my bullet journal! I'm terribly pleased about it - it's a joy that only other nerdy journal keepers can understand. 

 I also had the thought today, is the pain of the work week worth it to have the soaring high feeling of, 'TGIF!!!! It's the weekend!!!!'  This feeling wouldn't be as exhilarating if everyday was painless, right ? Right ?  

I hope we all fly high on the knowledge that it is a Friday and enjoy the heck out of this weekend. We have plans to do some dancing at a birthday party tonight, run errands, put up shelves, and spend some time outdoors tomorrow. It's supposed to be in the 80s tomorrow and Sloane and I are very excited about another short-sleeve and sandal weathered day. 

Can we stand some more photos from Easter weekend?  I almost forgot about these - we took them after we got back from church on Sunday a few weeks ago. If it looks like we are drenched in spring sun and reveling in the aftermath of church service and full stomachs, it's because we were. 











It's true. I am madly in love with this little family of mine. 



Tuesday, April 14, 2015

THE INEXHAUSTIBLE VARIETY OF LIFE




What a weekend! I'm still reeling a little bit from the past few days and the transition into Monday was rough, to say the least. "We did it!" Ken and I said to each other Sunday night as we got ready for bed, and both wished upon all our lucky stars that we had an extra weekend day to recover before being thrown back into the work week.  No such luck, but we went to bed exhausted in the way that really fortunate people get exhausted, stuffed with friends and family and celebrations, and then woke up next to each other, for a 10 minute in-between-snoozes morning cuddle that made the Monday morning a little sweeter.

I came across this collection of quotes from The Great Gatsby today and as I read through them, I came across a few that seemed appropriate and fitting to some of my recent days and thoughts:

"There are only the pursued, the pursuing, the busy and the tired."

"They had never been closer in their month of love, nor communicated more profoundly one with another."

"I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life."

Absolutely enchanted these days! and only repelled in the sense that I fantasize about a week of sleep.  And I feel compelled to write down how enchanted I was by this weekend's variety, indulge me, will you?

On Friday night, my sister was in town and we got to have a quick dinner together before going our separate ways for errands and we pretended that this is what life would be like if we lived in the same town and had the luxury of dinners to catch-up in person. Eunice eemo please come around more!



High school friends with their babies! Our friend Caroline got married this past weekend and with friends flying in from New York and California, we got together for a brunch to gush at the babies and just enjoy the fuzzies of being in each other's presence.  Sloane stayed at home with my MIL that morning but if I had brought her, we could have lined up the kids and been like, "look at what we made!!" and patted ourselves on the back about it.


The wedding was later that afternoon and here we are, dressed up, excited and sore.  Ken had done an intense workout that morning, and I was still sore from my workout a few days ago. Don't worry, we worked it out on the dance floor later that night, but then I developed some cramping from all the enthusiastic dancing and then I guess I got the baby all riled up because she proceeded to keep moving and kicking in incessantly for the rest of the weekend....



Caroline was such a beautiful bride and we all had so much fun celebrating the bride and groom.


Baby faye might be Sloane's favorite baby and we got a visit from Faye and her parents on Sunday, to Sloane's delight. Sloane peered at her, gave her stuffed animals, read to her and wanted to sit next to her in the car. So sweet!


We picked up pie and had lunch outdoors on what turned out to be a perfect spring afternoon. It's rainy and cloudy all week but I'll put up with it, as long as the weekends are sunny!



Sunday afternoon found us at a birthday gathering for this special boy, Os, and all of us, grownups and kids, decompressed under the setting sun, rolling around, eating treats and cake, talking and enjoying each other's company. It was a great end to the weekend!






One more Gatsby quote to leave you with:

"And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer."






Thursday, April 9, 2015

EASTER WEEKEND



It's been a busy week at work and every time it gets overwhelming I try to conjure back up the peaceful feeling I had all weekend. Just recalling how relaxed I was just a few days ago seems to help relieve some of the stress, so I'm hanging on to that, and employing all sorts of other remedies to rescue myself from ... myself. 

The baby must be going through a growth spurt because all of a sudden I feel huge, and the belly seems to be growing even bigger every single day.  This weekend I looked down and it was like beholding a dinosaur egg, and then this past week I'm nursing all sorts of back pain.  Not surprisingly, it is notably harder to carry Sloane around- I have to either do a slung to the side situation or over the belly hold, which doesn't last very long. But I can't help wanting to hold her; growing this new babe reminds me of what Sloane was like when she was just born and I realize how little time there is of just her and us, and how when the new baby comes Sloane really won't be the baby anymore. I find myself going from excited to nostalgic to worried and back to excited, all in a matter of a few minutes- totally normal, right?

 Also, short sleeves! Yellow nails! Flip flops and sandals!

Sloane now has gotten a taste of the short sleeve weather now and asks, EVERY MORNING, "Mom, is it warm today?"






I purposefully eschewed all things Easter-related the past couple of weeks, and by that I mean I ignored the dollar section at Target which was increasingly filling up with adorable bunny and egg related items every time I walked by, but then last Thursday I happened to be in there and meandered through its aisles and gave in.  I put together a little Easter basket for her and thought to myself, I'm one of those moms now! and got really excited to give it to her. I filled a small watering pot with bunny ears, bubbles in a container shaped like a carrot, a bunny cup and some stickers.  Here she is practicing some of her best bunny hops. 

Before I gave her the 'basket', we sat down so that I could attempt to explain what Easter was actually about. We've been reading about the Easter story for the past couple of weeks and that's when I learned it is not an easy thing to explain things like death and resurrection to a two and a half year old, so I've been thinking a lot about it and it's been the sort of challenge that I am finding really fun and humbling as a parent.  One thing I am learning is that it is essential to keep talking about things with your child, because her perspective and her level of understanding keeps changing and developing, and setting the precedent of having conversations about the meaning behind this and that, is significant.  



One Easter tradition that I was planning on doing for weeks is to dye some eggs with Sloane; she's old enough to appreciate it and I get so excited to show her things like this. Look Sloane, you see this egg that we see everyday and eat for breakfast ? We are going to make it change colors! 

That's why it's fun dyeing eggs, right ?  You're basically getting to play with your food and dressing up something that you see everyday in the kitchen.  I wanted to try using natural dyes because I love the muted colors it makes and plus, it's neat to see what foods can act as a dye. We used beets for red, red cabbage for blue, blueberries for darker blues and tumeric and yellow onion for yellow. My favorite was the red cabbage and its blue shades.






We ate so well this weekend with Ken's family, maybe that contributed to the feeling I had that I was waddling around. The pregnancy waddle is real, my friends.   I'm happy to report that I got my dim sum fix and also ate too many sesame balls with yellow bean filling, which were soo good. 



On Sunday, we went to church with my mother in law and since it was Easter Sunday, all the kids went up to the front to to sing a song.  Sloane didn't know any of the kids there and she didn't know the song, but we asked her if she wanted to go up with them and to our surprise, she did! She stood up there during the duration of the song, looking wide-eyed and very solemn, and we were all so proud of her for being so brave. 

She wore a purple blouse and skirt for her Easter outfit and she flitted and floated around in that all day, and then the next day asked if she could wear the same outfit again. I really didn't want this weekend to end either! felt sympathetic and so we changed her into that when she got home from daycare on Monday so that she could flit and float some more. 







Monday, April 6, 2015

AN EASTER EGG HUNT





We had such a good weekend, I didn't want it to end! We got to eat, relax and celebrate Easter with Ken's family in Virginia Beach this weekend and I felt grateful for every single moment.

We went on a Easter egg hunt on Saturday while we were down there and Sloane was allll business about it. The Easter 'basket' I had put together for her was in a watering pot so she used that to collect her eggs and I couldn't help laughing because she was really into it but didn't crack a smile once while she was collecting the eggs.  She was all concentration and furrowed brow. Afterwards, we excitedly opened all of them up, checked out the petting zoo, got a pony ride and went on a hay ride while eating freshly popped kettle corn.  It was the kind of afternoon where you are caressed by wind and sun, time feels like it standing still, and a catnap is called for afterwards, which we all did when we got home.
















Friday, April 3, 2015

WHAT SLOANE SAID......IN MARCH




Usually during the weekdays it's just me and Sloane having breakfast together, then me taking her to daycare, picking her up and then having dinner with her, which means we are having a lot of conversations these days. I am enjoying them immensely, as I try to stay present and aware of how precious this time is. Once the second babe comes, I know it's going to be harder to have this one on one time and when I remember that, it feels downright luxurious to be able to converse together, just the two of us, while we eat. 

Another reason why I'm practicing being present during this time is because watching a small person aquire language for the first time is absolutely fascinating and I don't want to take it for granted. It's probably one of the most amazing things that I have ever seen; to see a baby become verbal and learn how to communicate with words is constantly mind-blowing.

One Saturday morning we stopped by panera for breakfast on our way to run some early morning errands and I got her a bagel with cream cheese for the first time. I love introducing all kinds of foods to her, explaining what they are and telling her what they can do for our bodies and it was fun seeing how much she enjoyed that bagel. We sat there, the two of us, morning light streaming in, classical music playing overhead and Sloane asking me questions about people we saw. "Isn't this so nice?" I asked her and she agreed. And then she said, "Mom I love having breakfast together with you!"



March 1
The way she takes care of her stuffed animals as if they were babies., "it's ok, it's ok" she says, shushing them and rocking them back to sleep.


March 4
"Mom, I have the hicky ups! (Hiccups)"

March 5
The way she cups her hands to her ears when she hears a noise, dips her head and says, "What is that sound?"

March 7
"Hey mom, hold on a second ok? I'll be right back ok? "

March 8
"You can put your treasures in there honey."
"What are treasures?"
"Things that are important to you, things that you like."
"Mommy and daddy are like my treasures!"

March 10
"Mom what is your birthday called?"
"What month? My birthday is in July."
"My birthday is August.
"That's right, Sloane, it is!"
"When's papa's birthday?"
"It's in March. It's actually very soon it's this Saturday!"
"What about my birthday?"
"Oh honey your birthday is far away."
"No it's not! It's close.., It's close to our house!
(And later at home), "okay mom I'll be back, I'm going to go to my birthday across the street."

March 11
"It's not keep rain not falling on my head"

March 13
While listening to s Veggie tales song and hearing the word, "God" -
"Mom, I have a Gof in my Jesus book!"

March 14
"Mom, sometimes I'm a little bit shy." 

March 15
Some days when I walk into her room to wake her up, she smiles up without even having opened her eyes yet, knowing that I'm there.

March 16
While driving home at night,
"Shh mommy the sun's sleeping"


March 18
"Dad, mom, and me together we are a family !" (She just learned that word, family)


March 20
I was telling her about the rain and told her God sometimes made it rain so that trees and plants can grow. And she thought about it for a moment and said, "what is God doing now?"


March 21
" I want to fly the plane to halmee's (my mom) korean house and read books... And I want to go tomorrow."

March 22
The way she squeals "mommy!" And comes running to me with the biggest smile on her face, eyes sparkling.

March 24
"Mom I want the sun to go to sleep and I want the moon to wake up. and I want the stars to wake up too."


March 25
"Let me think mom."


March 26
"Hey look at that turtle !!" Pointing to an imaginary turtle on the floor. "It's getting away!"


March 28
"Mom, say chachi" 
"Chachi"
"That means, boy, ok? .....Say, kaki" 
"Kaki"
"That means, girl, mom.....Say, tapa"
"Tapa"
"That means mom!"
(....and on and on. We often go over korean words and what they mean, so I think that's what she's doing here, doing what I do with her...but in her own made up language). 

March 29
"Put your phone down mom, and come here!"




Wednesday, April 1, 2015

AMANDA'S BABY SHOWER AND A PALM LEAF WALL


I LOVE that it's April! April means Easter, spring, warmer winds, a wedding and budding flowers and trees. April means one more month closer to certain babies that will be born soon, and the anticipation of new life along with these whiffs of spring all feels so right and exciting.

 My sweet friend Amanda is expecting her first soon and we were all thrilled that and was able to fly in from Memphis so we could throw a baby shower for her and see her baby bump in action. Ever since Amanda had to move away, I've missed her and I'm always secretly hoping her and her husband will move back but things seem to be falling into place for them there at the moment and I couldn't be happier that their next phase of life includes a little baby. 

Ever since I became a mom and the longer that I am a mom,  I find myself having a whole new appreciation for what these baby showers embody and remind me of. Especially with the group of ladies and moms that I have right now, I end up feeling incredibly grateful that I have this community of support. Whether they are moms or not, the women in my life are amazing and I learn so much from them. 



Now for this wall. I was originally going to try kale, because I have this dream of a wall covered in kale, but I tried a couple of test runs and turns out kale is a little too heavy for mere tape and I'm going to have to do a little more experimenting, which I will don't you worry, but in the meanwhile, I came across Palm leaves at the local Kroger (for $4 per bunch) and they were perfect for this project. They are lightweight, lay flat and stayed on the wall with tape. I originally tried washi tape but it wasn't strong enough and scotch tape worked much better. This is probably one of my favorite photo backdrop projects because it was so cost efficient ($14 including the cost of tape) and the effect is dramatic and fresh. 






Two baby bumps...three baby bumps!! 




Happy shower Amanda, we love you!