Monthly Archives February 2008

SAS Spirit Day

cimg8219.JPGSAS Spirit Day is a blast at the elementary school and it serves its purpose quite well. The whole point is to build a sense of community and belonging amongst all of the kids. So when Maddie is walking through the hallways of the elementary school in her red Puma shirt and the fourth graders give her high fives in the hallway for being a Puma, she BEAMS. But when Maddie walks through the middle school where I teach in her red Puma shirt and the 8th graders give her high fives and start teaching her the Puma song, she BEAMS AND SPARKLES. As we walked from my class today to her class, she said over and over again this: “I’m just so excited. I’m just sooo excited!”

One reason she came to my room today was to put on some red hairspray...

Read More

Amelia – 5 months

There is no purpose in posting this other than, I think she’s pretty darn cute! Enjoy! :)

Read More


cimg8178.JPGAmelia is interacting with us more and more each day. I keep saying how “durable” she is because Maddie is literally in her face a lot of the time. Maddie loves her sister and she desperately wants her to react to her. She wants Amelia to laugh at her silly faces and wants her to squeal with delight when Maddie walks in the door. In the beginning, I spent a lot of time trying to “protect” Amelia but I’ve found that I really don’t need to intervene all that much. The bottom line is that Amelia thinks Miss Maddie is pretty darn funny. At night when they are both fresh out of the bath, they lay on the bed gigglingcimg8203.JPG with each other. In the mornings before Maddie goes to school, Amelia is the only one to get Maddie out of her morning funk (which she inherited from her dad)...

Read More

Crazy Sock Day!

Maddie’s Crazy Socks!It’s spirit week at SAS!  What fun the kids are having too as they know they are part of something bigger than themselves.  Maddie looks at the big kids walking around with their stuffed animals and is proud as can be to show off her ballerina bear she got from her grandmas for Christmas.  The first day of spirit week was crazy sock day and since Maddie has outgrown most of her crazy socks, we decided to MAKE some new crazy socks.  I picked up some pom-poms for her and gave her a needle a thread.  Now, I threaded the needle and tied knots when she was finished, but she really did the rest!  She did very, very well and she said, “no blood mommy!”  :)

Read More

Amelia Eats… Real Food!

cimg7966.JPGWhat a great day this was… it will go down in history!

Maddie was a full six months before starting to eat real people food, but Miss Amelia…. she just can’t wait. I honestly believe that one of the reasons she is ready is because of her interest level. Amelia has been watching Maddie at the dinner table for weeks and I think she has actually learned something by doing so.

So we broke out the Earth’s Best Whole Grain Rice Cereal (like the plug?) and she about more than I thought she would! It kind of reminds me of a young baby bird chirping away with an open mouth, wanting more food. She loved it! :)

Maddie was actually the first one to give Amelia the food and then she and dad took turns and fought over who was next...

Read More

Making Dumplings!

cimg7877.JPGThe end of Chinese New Year is marked by the Lantern Festival. The Links had a party for its residents and made it super kid friendly. They hired people to come in and teach the kids, but Ms. Zhou stepped in to teach them!! I had to laugh because when she tried to teach me, she gave up and had the original helpers translate her directions. Her dough is always so round with the thinnest edges and thicker center. When you fold them in half, there is a special pinching technique that needs to occur on both sides. I could only get it right on one side while the other looked seriously deformed. The entire time Maddie just plotted away like she’s been doing this for ages… roll, roll, chopsticks with filling, pinch, pinch. Show off!!

The dumplings were yummy – even if they were slightly d...

Read More

Valentine’s Day with the Gourmet Geeks

Andy and Jeff - The Gourmet GeeksNothing says I love you like….

broadcasting the third episode of the Gourmet Geeks.

Jeff predicted on his blog The Thinking Stick that this year would be the year of Live Web and I think he is right! It captures your attention… makes you want to tune in.

I don’t know what took us so long to figure this one out, but it’s awesome on so many levels. Andy and Jeff are the Gourmet Geeks and once every couple of weeks Jeff and Daneah head over to our house to broadcast and show off their fine culinary and geeky talents! This week it was Beef Stir Fry which was preceded by a dozen red roses for both Uma and Hetta. This week we introduced Uma’s mom, Um, and introduced Hetta’s mom, He. Reasons why this is a good thing:

  • Maddie LOVES Daneah and Jeff as they have known her since before she was e...
Read More

Will you be my V-A-L-E-N-T-I-N-E?

Maddie Make Valentine CardsOn the benchmarks for PreK-4 students, it says that children should be able to sit for at least 5 minutes and stay on task the entire time. How about an hour?

Maddie Anna amazes me day in and day out. We bought valentine cards for all of her schoolmates when were home at Christmas time because as with most things – she gets it this year. When I asked her tonight if I could help her write the names of her classmates, she simplied said, “I can do it myself mommy.” She wasn’t kidding.

She sat at the kitchen table for over an hour and wrote her name 15 times in all of the from spaces AS WELL AS writing the names of all 15 of her classmates. She asked the the next letter sometimes, but she knew what to do...

Read More

The Girl is Growing!

cimg7641.JPGAmelia had her four month check up today.  We’ve been talking about it for weeks and Maddie has been trying to prepare Amelia for the shots.  Maddie has decided that she is brave for everything except for shots and that Amelia should not even try to be brave for the shots… it just doesn’t work.  Rather than use those doctor office band-aids Maddie wanted to bring a special Barbie band-aid for Amelia.  Barbie…  what happened to the infatuation with Dora?!

Amelia is 15.7 pounds now!  She’s in the 95% for height and the 90% for weight which means she is well balanced and healthy! :)  Maddie was not this big at four months… she was tall, but skinny.  She’s still that way – must be her infatuation with fruits and vegetables!


Read More

Dinner in Suzhou

Amelia’s followersWhen we were in Suzhou, we went out to dinner for Beijing duck with both Amelia and Maddie along for the ride. The last time we were there was with Barb and Earl a year ago and Maddie was a bit of a celebrity. This is when I wrote the Special Child Syndrome post. Maddie is a beautiful, smart, kind and sensitive young girl. She is keenly aware that her little sister sometimes steals the show these days. When Amelia was first born, I was so thankful to all of the people that brought little presents for Maddie TOO and thankful to the people that still said hello to Maddie first. As I think about it, all of these people were mostly westerners… they experience families with two children all of the time. Most Chinese do not experience families with two children AND they love babies...

Read More

Suzhou and CNY

View from the hotelWe headed to Suzhou this time last year and decided to go ahead an brave the elements once again. It has been cold this year and the snow in Suzhou has not melted like it has in Shanghai. It meant some nice pictures though!

We started off at our favorite dumpling shop which is delicious but in a very, very cold building. Amelia and Maddie didn’t seem to mind too much though as they were all giggles in their ultra warm clothes. Amelia’s pink spotted coveralls are actually from the Portland Saturday Market – nothing like a little piece of home! :)

We made our way to to Suzhou’s No. 1 Silk Mill so that mom could see how silk quilts are actually made. It’s a really good place to go as you see everything from beginning to end...

Read More

Chinese New Year 2008

Maddie at the WestinBoth my mom and Andy flew in on the same night which brought much excitement to our quiet house! Even though they were both jet-lagging, I reserved two rooms down at the Westin on the Bund in Shanghai for the following night. The hotel is gorgeous and the two rooms provided us with a good view of the fireworks to kick off the Year of the Rat. I will never forget the sounds of Chinese New Year while actually in China. Similar to last year, the sounds shake the earth and buildings for hours. The fireworks go all night long, but the real show starts around 11:30p.m. Maddie is still young though as she slept through the big show as did Amelia Mabel. There were enough fireworks for the awake hours though...

Read More

Sleeping Beauties

Maddie Sleeps

I went to wake the girls up this morning and found them both in the exact same position! Maddie had moved just a pinch but still had one hand behind her head. Maddie got plenty of laughs out of these pictures today. She’s convinced that Amelia is a copycat!! :)

Amelia Sleeps

Read More

Mom and Maddie on CNY!

Mom and Maddie at the New Year performances.

Waiting to Hit the Stage with Chloe, Ri-Ri, Justin and KaiChen

RiRi and Maddie Play at CNY

Read More