Tuesday, December 25, 2007


We've had a wonderful Christmas here at our house. On Sunday my sisters, their families and our aunt all braved the winter weather to come to our house for a soup and chili lunch and then opened gifts. We had a horrible blizzard on Saturday but by Sunday roads were good enough for everyone to make it. It was wonderful to get to see two of my nephews that I haven't seen in a few years and meet their new little ones (yes, I'm a great aunt)! Emily's aunts spoiled her with some fun gifts and here are some photos to prove it. Benjamin got to meet his Aunt Lisa and cousins for the first time and saw his Aunt BB again. He didn't mind the attention and being held by a few new folks. Here's a photo of BB holding him while he sported his little Christmas outfit. Cousin Haileigh also got in on the action. Boy, this little guy sure gets a lot of attention from the ladies! He doesn't seem to mind a bit! :-)

Last night, we attended Christmas Eve services at our church. Here are a few photos of our family before church. After the service we drove around for a bit looking at Christmas lights then stopped off at our pastor's house for snacks before heading home. The kids were both up past their bedtimes so needless to say it didn't take long for them to get to sleep. AND...drumroll please...we had our own little Christmas miracle last night. Benjamin slept all night through! He finally woke up around 6:45 and Jeff and I looked at each other and asked, "Did YOU get up and feed him in the night?" We certainly aren't expecting this again, at least for a while. But apparently Benjamin was tired enough to make it through the night.

This morning, we got up and opened our gifts to each other. Santa was good enough to bring Emily a ball of yarn (see photo where she is hugging it), more chapstick AND a computer--all the things she asked for. Mommy and Daddy got her a digital camera and she spent the morning trying that out, too.

We will have our Christmas dinner of ham, sweet potatoes, corn and bread this evening before turning in the night. Until then, we will call our family in New Zealand (who celebrated their Christmas a day before us) on our computer and try out our new webcam so they can see live shots of us. I'm sure there will also be some television watching and of course, naps for the little ones and maybe the big ones, too.

Merry Christmas to everyone!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Holiday baking

I'm not doing very much holiday baking at all. First, Jeff and I DON"T need all those sweets around our house. And second, I have a pretty small family and will just have them here for the day on Sunday. However, I did bake some pumpkin bread yesterday and of course, had my helper right there with me. She is pretty much attached to my side all the time anyway, but especially likes to do anything in the kitchen and gets so "exciting" (her word for excited). So here are a few photos of her helping. I tend to be a bit of a control freak so messes in the kitchen take lots of patience for me to accept. But I reminded myself it only has to be wiped up and then it's taken care of. :-)

Today Benjamin is 12 weeks old. Hard to believe how quickly the time is going. He is really working hard to hold his head up. He does pretty well most of the time but is still a bit like a bobblehead at times. He smiles and babbles a lot now which is so fun to watch. So here are a few photos of him to commemorate his 12 week birthday!

Yesterday Emily was in my bedroom getting dressed while I was in Benjamin's room changing him. I was telling Benjamin how Emily is such a big girl and can get dressed all by herself now. Emily then told Benjamin that "The tag goes in the back, Benjamin" and "Don't put it on backwards!" Benjamin is going to have lots of help when he starts learning to get dressed himself!

Also, good news on the potty training. Emily has been wearing her pull ups during the day and over the last week or so has taken herself to the potty and gone on her own. And yesterday she asked to wear her big girl Dora panties. So while there have been a few "accidents" during the day in her pull up, she is doing really well. Number 2 is a completely different story, but we'll take baby steps!

This Saturday Emily and Benjamin's BB (my sister Brenda) and family will be coming to visit. Then my other sister, her family and our aunt will be arriving here Sunday for the day to celebrate Christmas. On Christmas Eve and Christmas it will be just our little family of four so it should be a nice, quiet holiday. I'm sure I'll have a few photos to post after Christmas! Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 17, 2007

We're HOME!!!

We are finally home! We all got home as a family Sunday evening! Needless to say everyone, kitties, dog, kids, and Mommy and Daddy were glad to be together in our home again. Yesterday after church we stopped by the house so we could walk our dog. I saw footprints in our new 7 inches of snow that led to the backyard and around where the downed power line was located. Well, as we were pulling out of the driveway I saw a man with a hard hat walking down the sidewalk a few houses down. We stopped and hollered at him asking if he knew when they might be working on our house. He asked where we lived and when we told him he said we were next!!! Music to my ears. I actually had tears in my eyes I was so happy. I was sure the 7 inches of snow we got Friday night was going to slow progress down even more. We decided to go back to our hotel room for a while to let the house warm up. It was a chilly 38 degrees in there that morning. Besides, Emily wanted to go "swimming" in the hot tub. So while the kids and I had naps in the room, Jeff came home and cleaned, shoveled snow, and got everything ready for us to return home (what a wonderful husband). Then after a church dinner and program last night we got home. Needless to say, the cats and Zack, my dog, didn't venture far from us. And everyone had a great night's sleep. Benjamin even slept 7 straight hours!!

This ice storm will certainly go down in Hutchinson history. Our little town of maybe 40,000 was featured on the national news and the weather channel last week because of the devastation and the thousands without power. Please pray for the many in Kansans whose homes are still dark and cold that they will soon be able to return, too, because it is so very cold outside. Send thanks to all the power company lineman who brave this nasty weather (we had crews here from Colorado, Indiana, Arkansas to name a few). And count your blessings and enjoy your home, however modest it may be and be thankful for all you have. We forget how very blessed we are until something we have is gone, even temporarily.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Still Homeless

Today is Thursday and we still don't have power back on at our house (see previous blog). We had an electrician come to the house and put the electrical box back on our house (called a weather head, I think). But Westar energy hasn't gotten to us yet. Jeff called yesterday and actually reached a live person there, but the news wasn't good. She said it could be December 22 before they get our lines back up! Needless to say that bit of news was particularly discouraging. We are hosting Christmas for my family at our house on the 23rd so I certainly hope we have at least a few days to prepare.

We are still in our little hotel room and toughing it out. Jeff is back at work so the kids and I are here day and night. I did go to our house this morning to get a few more clothes and necessities, let my dog out, check on kitties, etc. Zack, our poor dog, doesn't understand what's going on. While we go over several times a day to let him out to potty, I still feel horrible for leaving him there in the cold and dark. I don't think it's all bad...I believe he's making himself comfortable in Jeff's new armchair! :-) I also stopped by the neighbor's house and invited them to take any and all the food out of our deep freeze in the garage as it was thawing out and would be ruined if not used soon. What's left in the fridge and freezer in the house is already a total loss.

Today after breakfast and dropping Daddy off at work, I decided to take the kids to the library for a change of scenery. Unfortunately the library was not open. So we went to our little mall and walked around in the stores. My dear daughter is at the age where she says the funniest things. We were walking past the lingerie department in a store when she spotted a bra hanging at her eye level. She stopped, grabbed it and said, "Look mom! Boobies!" Then she informed me she wanted a bra. Sure, Emily. When you grow into a 38C you can get one. HA! I just had to laugh at her comment. Kids do say the funniest things!

Here's hoping we can go home soon and that I can continue to look on the bright side of things.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


I'm talking about our weather here the last 24 hours. I'm currently writing this post from a hotel room, if that gives you any indication of how the weather has affected us. I'm sure you all have heard about the big winter storm making its way through the midwest. Well, here in our hometown (which apparently has been featured on the Weather Channel) was slammed by an ice storm last night. Consequently our power lines are lying in our back yard and we have no electricity, heat, etc. Jeff and I both agreed that if we didn't have little ones, especially an 11 week old little one, we would have toughed it out and stayed with our dog and kitties. But it was just too cold for him. So after getting on a waiting list at one of our local hotels, praise God there was a cancellation and we got a room. Having no family within three hours, there really wasn't anywhere else for us to go. We've dealt today with a sick baby (he is doing better now), the electicity going out at the restaurant we were at for breakfast, part of the neighbor's tree falling on our car (no apparent damage), me falling on the ice (again, no apparent damage other than a bruised leg and backside) and a near miss as we almost slid into a pickup truck in front of us. BUT, I am so thankful we have a room for the next four nights and HEAT. Because we are on the power company's waiting list along with thousands of other people and the lines pulled the box off the side of the house which will require an electrician, we will likely not be home for another few days. I hope any of you in the path of this or other storms stay safe and warm!! Our little family is off to bed for the night. :-)

Saturday, December 8, 2007

What a Novelty!!

Mommy took a bath tonight. Before the kids were in bed. This caused quite a stir in our little family. I shower at night now as it is more convenient to do while Jeff is at home and can take care of Benjamin. But I always shower after Emily is in bed. So it took a bit of convincing before I even went into the bathroom. As soon as I said I was going to take a bath, she wanted one, too. We live in a 70+ year old home with one bath and the tub certainly isn't big enough to share. After telling her Mommy wanted to take a bath ALONE, she reluctantly went into the living room with Daddy. Within minutes she was back and told me, "I want to watch you." No, Emmy. Go back out with Daddy. Then I heard the dog scratching at the back door wanting back in. Then Benjamin started to cry and I heard Emily tell him, "Mommy's taking a bath, Benjamin!" By her tone, I could have been climbing Mt. Everest. Mommy was doing something she hadn't done least for a very long time. A few minutes later I heard Emily ask to nobody in particular, "Where is Mommy?" I finished up in the bath, opened the bathroom door and Zack (our dog) was the first to come running in. Then I heard Emily running down the hall. She came in and asked with a smile, "You done, Mommy?" Yes, I suppose I was. My entire "retreat" lasted maybe 20 minutes. Surprisingly I was able to relax and enjoyed my few minutes of solitude. But I think next time I will wait until everyone is asleep. :-)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Visit with Santa

Our visit to Santa was this morning. I'll start by saying Emily has never before been to see Santa. Neither has Mommy for that matter. I never went as a child. Emily had already told me that she would not sit on his lap and that she was afraid of Santa. So on the way to see him this morning part of me thought, "This will be a waste of time." But I wanted to at least try. I really think sometimes these things are more for the parents than they are for the children. At any rate, we went, and she got to visit with Santa from a distance. She was sure he knew her name, age, the town we live in and what she wanted from him (a computer, a ball of yarn-see previous post-and she just this morning added chapstick to her list). She also wanted to know where he had parked his sleigh. He told her it was clear on the other side of campus where the reindeer were having a snack. When it was time for us to leave, she wanted to drive around a bit looking for the sleigh. When we couldn't find it anywhere she would say, "Hmmmmm." ;-)

We were able to get a photo of all of us (she insisted Mommy be in the photo, too) with Santa. She wasn't interested in smiling so this is the best we could do. Benjamin, on the other hand, wasn't afraid of Santa at all and liked looking at Santa's bright red suit. :-)

And so this concluded our first visit with Santa. I'm thinking Santa might be able to accomodate her request for a computer, ball of yarn and chapstick. I'm just glad she didn't ask for a pony!! We love you, Santa, and will have your chocolate chip cookies and milk waiting for you on December 24th!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

All I Want for Christmas

For a few months now, Emily has been asking for a "compooter" for Christmas. I told her she would have to be a good girl in order for Santa to bring it. Today she also said she would like a ball of yarn. Yes, you read that correctly. Emily wants a computer and a ball of yarn for Christmas! Lately she has been fascinated by unrolling spools of ribbon and rolls of tape (we've had it everywhere) so I wonder if a ball of yarn somehow ties in. I'm sure she wants it so that she can unroll it all over the house. Tomorrow we will actually be going to visit with Santa at the college where Daddy works. I told her she would get to sit on Santa's lap and tell him about the computer and ball of yarn. She said no, she wants to hide from Santa but she would sit on my lap and tell me what she wants. So Mommy might end up being the one to sit on Santa's lap with Emily sitting on my lap (hope Santa has a big lap to accomodate Mommy). :-) Whether or not she actually agrees to see Santa, we will find out tomorrow. But while other children are thinking about sugarplums and all the toys and gadgets they hope to receive from him, my little girl will dreaming of a ball of yarn!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Thanksgiving, First snow and Cooking up a Storm

We've done lots of fun things these last few weeks. Two days after Emily and I played in the leaves outside, we had our first snow. As soon as I told her it was snowing she said she wanted to get her gum boots on and go outside and play in it. At that point it was already dark so she had to wait until the next morning and Daddy took her out to play in the snow.

On Thanksgiving we traveled three hours to my sister, Brenda's, house for the day. Emily insisted she wear pantyhose (aka tights) so she wore her sparkly snowman tights with her dress. She proudly lifted up her dress too show my family her pantyhose. She was pretty proud of them!

The Saturday after Thaksgiving Emily and Daddy bought our Christmas tree and she and I decorated it that night. She sang "Jingle Bells" over and over again as we decorated. She told me "I'm exciting" which means she's excited. We had a good time and the tree looks beautiful although she wasn't that interested in getting her photo taken. I was able to steal one quick shot.

Emily got a play kitchen for her birthday and she really enjoys it. To be honest, Mommy enjoys playing with it with Emily. I always wanted a play kitchen when I was little. This morning she and I played with it for quite some time. The main course was soup made from cabbage, red bell pepper, carrots...and an orange. A little different but we both had a serving of it. :-)

Baby brother is doing great. Last Thursday he had his two month check up and is over 11lbs and 22 1/2 inches long. That's more than double his weight and three inches longer in just 9 weeks. AND...He's now smiling at me! Talk about wrapping me around his little finger! ;-)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Life Changes

Well, we have certainly had lots of life changes in the two years Emily has been home with us. The latest is the arrival of her baby brother. Benjamin Patrick Adams was born September 27 at 1:53pm. He was 4-5 weeks early so we weren't quite expecting him so soon, but are glad that he is here. Matter of fact, he was born just a few days after my last post and less than a week after our childbirth class and our baby shower. Talk about timing! Whew!

Being a big sister certainly has its ups and downs. First, for a girl who was used to be the only to being one of two, it has taken some time to get used to the idea that Mom and Dad can't always respond immediately to her wants and wishes now. Add that to the fact that we are now three years old, and there have definitely been some behavior issues. However, she is very loving toward her baby brother and has been interested in all things baby related from the start. Mommy struggles to make time for just Emily some days as Daddy's work schedule requires some long hours. But we do our best. In the meantime, here are a few other things, besides getting a new brother, that have happened since our last post:

*Lots of time with Aunt BB, who was a HUGE help with Emily while we were in the hospital with Benjamin. Emily attended her cousin's football game where she apparently shouted, "Run, People!"

*A birthday: Emily turned three on November 8th. We celebrated quietly that day since Daddy had to work late that night. We did take her lunch at Applebees for her birthday and we opened presents. Some of her favorite presents were (and please don't laugh--she really does love these) flashlights and a disposable camera. Then we had a birthday party for her on the 10th with some family and friends. We had pizza and really groovy Dora cake! Her favorite presents that day were her new kitchen from Mommy and Daddy and some bath gels and lotions from her friends from church.

*Our Family Day. Our Family Day is the anniversary of the day Emily and I first met each other and became a family. This year unfortunately went uncelebrated as Mommy was sick in bed with an infection.

Now we are gearing up for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Emily is sure to tell me when she sees a toy commercial that, "I want that, Mom." It makes no difference what kind of toy it is, she says she wants it. She continues to have a fiery personality and is talking up an absolute storm. Some of my favorite phrases of hers include, "Relax, Mom," "I'm relaxing" and "I'm getting situated." Sometimes she will say things and I will have no idea where she has come up with the word. So, she's great in verbal skills. Now if we could only get the potty training thing! One major change at a time, I suppose. We're trying not to push it.

Yesterday we had a lovely morning so we went outside to blow bubbles and ride her bike. But her attention quickly switched to all the leaves on the ground. So I got the rake, made a big pile and she had a great time running and jumping into it and also liked laying down in it and wanted to be completely covered up. So these are some photos of her playing in the leaves as well as some photos of she and her brother together.

Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels if you are on the road, plane or rail!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Our last few weeks

Our last few weeks here at home have been busy ones. First, we've really been working on potty training. While most days she has the "pee pee" thing down, we still have accidents and have yet to even attempt "poo poo" on the potty. Mommy is trying not to get discouraged but some days it can be. I know she can do it!! She just has a stubborn streak. Yesterday we had a dry panties day all day and so far so good today. So while progress might not be as quick as what I might like, we are getting there slowly but surely. Last week we did make a trip to the zoo (see photo of Em and racoon) and she pottied in the big girl potty before we left. When we walked out of the restroom she shouted very loudly, "I pottied, People!" Unfortunately we were the only ones there at the time and nobody heard.

Last week we started our Wee Toddlers class at the Rec Center. This is a one hour class on Thursday mornings where kids her age get together for 30 minutes of unstructured playtime then story time, snack and a craft. Since last week was our first week I anticipated maybe a bit of reluctance. However I was not prepared for Emily running down the hall back toward the front door, screaming and spending the first 30 minutes in class crying hysterically. I felt horrible! The teacher made several attempts to get Emily involved and then I think finally gave up. It wasn't until it was time to pick up toys and get ready for a story that she actually left my side. I slipped out the door of the classroom (which was left open but had a baby gate in it) and sat outside the room and I never heard another peep out of her for the last 30 minutes. When class was over she came running out to show me her picture and was happy, laughing and having a great time. I'm hoping this Thursday is better and that we don't have to go through the first 30 minutes like we did last week.

This morning was our first morning for Toddler Time at the library. It runs for 30 minutes each week. Today's topic was ABC's. There were just three other toddlers there with their moms so not a very big group. I was pretty pleased with my girl though as she was the only one who sang along to the ABC song with the librarian. She seemed to enjoy it and Mommy did, too, so we'll look forward to going back each week from now until mid-December (minus the weeks we will be out when baby brother comes along).

Yesterday we had our baby shower for our little boy expected in just four weeks. Emily knew pretty much everyone there and had a great time. Here is a picture of Em, me, my two sisters and our two aunts--three generations of a sort since my mom is no longer with us.

Emily loves to water the flowers. A co-worker of Jeff's gave her a duck watering can shortly after we moved here and she takes such care walking from the kitchen sink to the front porch to water. Here is a picture of her watering our flowers.

And this from the "out of the mouths of babes" column...last week I was finishing putting my make-up on one morning when Emily joined me in the bathroom. I told her I was almost finished but needed to put my make-up on. She asked, "So you don't scare people?" Yes, Emily, so I don't scare people. Children are so honest!! :-)

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Fun at the Fair!!

Yesterday we had the opportunity to go to the state fair. It's held every year in Hutchinson, the town we just moved to this summer. We live just 6 blocks from the fair grounds and since Jeff had to work at a booth for his college for part of the afternoon, Emily and I went up to meet Daddy after his shift and have a look around.

I had never been to our Kansas State Fair so I had no idea what to expect. It had all the typical fair "stuff" just on a larger level. We got to eat a bit of fair food--funnel cake for me and Em and a meat pie just like what they have in NZ for Daddy. We also got to visit the birthing barn (darn, no babies being born at the time) and got to see a very friendly one day old calf, some baby pigs, baby chicks (to which she said "Gobble, gobble") and a baby donkey. They were all so cute. She wanted to see some cows and had been making mooing sounds a good part of the day so of course there were plenty to see.

Probably the biggest highlight for me was watching Emily ride some rides so I included some photos. The only ride she had ever been on was a merry-go-round at the mall. So we started out on that. Unfortunately she did not want to sit on a horse but instead settled for sitting on a bench with Daddy. Then she saw the car ride and wanted to ride on that. She said she wanted a specific car. Since there was just one kid ahead of her and six cars to choose from, I hoped she would be able to get the car she wanted. She didn't (the little boy took "her" car) but she quickly decided on her second choice...a sporty little red car. She rode that twice. She and Daddy also rode the bumblebee ride. She wasn't sure about it at first. And neither was Mommy as it went pretty high up in the air. But she seemed to enjoy it. I was worried about Daddy on all these rides but he fared pretty well, too! HA!

After walking around for more than two hours and seeing all we wanted to see, Mommy's eight month pregnant body was ready for a rest so we said goodbye to the fair until maybe next year. Then, we will have two in tow!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Labor Day Weekend fun

This past Labor Day weekend we spent at my dad and sister's houses. They live next door to each other so it's easy to visit both. Here is a photo of Emily and her Papa (my dad). We left home Saturday morning and drove just 20 minutes to the little Amish/Mennonite town of Yoder and had breakfast at a very popular restaurant there. Then we drove the rest of the two and a half hours to Papa and BB's (my dad and sister, Brenda). Saturday afternoon Emily had a swim in BB's pool with Mommy, Daddy, BB, and cousins Haileigh and Eric. A good time was had by all...except for when Emily was clinging to someone. She is not terribly confident in the water. Saturday night we had pizza at Papa's and Sunday at lunch we celebrated Papa's birthday (Sept. 3) and Emily's great Aunt Dee's birthday (August 30) with hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, etc. etc. Needless to say we were well fed this past weekend. We had a special visit from Emily's great Aunt Carol who lives in Arizona and is in Kansas for a month visiting. Emily and Jeff had never met Aunt Carol and it had been several years since I last saw her.

We had a nice time and it was good to get away, if even just a few hours away! But visiting family was the best part!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Elmo Came Through Surgery with Flying Colors!

I don't know if you all know or not, but Elmo was really ill yesterday. Matter of fact, he had to have surgery. Dr. Emily Tomlinson started out by giving him several shots but that didn't seem to work so off he went to her room (aka the OR) and into her bed for surgery. She shut her door behind her so I asked if everything was okay and if Elmo needed help. She opened her door, stuck her head out with her stethoscope around her neck, said, "No thank you" and returned to the task at hand.

Shortly afterward, she came out asking for some help. Apparently things were pretty touch and go in the OR so she was calling in some reinforcements in the form of Mommy. I was handed a pair of scissors from the doctor kit. Oh dear! I have to admit I wasn't prepared for surgery yesterday afternoon. I hadn't even scrubbed yet! But I'm happy to say Elmo made it through the night and was well enough to go on some errands with us this morning! Whew! I'm sure you are all relieved. Here are some photos I was able to sneak in during surgery. You'll notice that Dr. Tomlinson got tired and decided to lay down with Elmo right after surgery. :-)

Monday, August 27, 2007

More fun with a two year old!

In my last post, I listed several phrases which are current favorites with Emily. I did forget one; one we've heard nearly every morning over the last few days. We still have a monitor in her room so we can hear her if she wakes up at night with a bad dream, when she wakes up in the morning, etc. We have had several laughs over the last year or so with what she is saying or singing first thing in the morning. The last several mornings she has said, "Mommy, come here! I need to show you someping." My first thought was, "Oh great...what has she done!" So the first morning when I went to her room to tell her good morning and ask what she needed to show me, she said another one of her current favorites: "I don't know."

This morning, a young salesman came to the front door selling educational books. Because #1 I'm not prone to inviting strangers into my home and #2 Our dog Zack was standing at the front door barking loudly, I chose to go out on the front porch to see what he had to say. Once he was all done (and I chose not to purchase any of his items) he asked me for a glass of water. I said I would be happy to go get him one. As I tried to open the front storm door, I realized with a sickening feeling, that the door was locked. My two year old was on the other side of the door, with our dog, and had her hand on the lock. She had locked me out. I wondered how easy it would be to get her to twist the lock back to the unlock position. After a few tense moments and me saying in my most stern voice to turn the lock the other way, she unlocked it, I went in to get the young man a drink of water, and another crisis was averted. Fun with a two year old! It must be Monday. Ha!!!

Friday, August 24, 2007

I survived!!

I survived my first week of being a stay at home mom! Better yet, my two-almost three year old-survived, too! It's been a good week of both of us trying to find our "routine." We took a walk nearly every morning this week before it got too hot. They were short jaunts around our new neighborhood but still gave Mom some exercise and Emily seemed to enjoy the change of scenery, too. Daddy works close enough to walk to and from home so we get to have him home for lunch each day. We've done some shopping, gardening (aka weed pulling), playing on the swingset, she rode her bike, did lots of sidewalk chalk, did painting and coloring with markers and the hit of the week was Emily getting a pair of her own scissors (don't worry, they are the kindergarten type with blunt ends and are ONLY used under Mom's strict supervision).

I hope to get Emily enrolled in a few classes starting in September: Toddler Story Time at the local library on Tuesday mornings and Wee Wigglers (a play group) at the local rec center. I also hope to join the Y this weekend so we might add a gymnastics class to the mix. Depends on how much she is up for. I think she is going to really miss the interaction with other kids. Yesterday we were on a walk and she saw some boys outside playing at what appeared to have been a home daycare. She heard them laughing and playing, commented on their play and said, "I play, too!" Unfortunately we didn't know these folks and they had all gone inside by the time we got to the house.

Phrases I've heard at least 3oo times this week: "Mommy doing?" "Why?" "I don't know." "Why?" "I mean it, Mommy!" "Why?" "I do it!" and yes, "Why?" again! Ah, the mind of a two year old! It's been fun for Mommy so far. Hopefully it has been for Emily. Several people have told me this is the most important job I'll ever have and I will never regret my decision to stay home while our children are little. So far, so good! :-)

Please check back again! I hope to stay on top of this blog now--at least until October 23rd or thereabouts!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Time goes too quickly!!

Well, my last post back in MARCH!! (shame on me) was titled "Mommy is a slacker." I can't imagine what I could title this post as I'm just now getting back to this blog. There have only been a few things going on in our lives these last five months.

First, in February we learned that Emily would be a big sister. Jeff and I are expecting a baby boy (that part we didn't learn until early June) on October 23rd. The pregnancy has gone well so far and I am down to my last nine weeks (again, time goes too quickly)! I feel like I have lots to do before the arrival of our new little one.

In April Daddy (and about 25 others) unfortunately was laid off from his job. And after only three weeks off work he was gainfully employed again, this time with Hutchinson Community College. Hutchinson is a town about an hour away from where we lived. Yes, I said lived...

We decided to make Hutchinson our new home and after having our house and land on the market for just four days, it sold and we were able to buy a home just three blocks from Jeff's office. So he walks to work now. This is a wonderful thing, especially with gas prices what they are. With these changes, we decided now was a good time for me to leave my position of nine years and be a stay at home mom for the time being. This is something I've always wanted to try and feel so lucky to be able to do. So effective last Friday, August 17th, I am no longer employed full time outside of the home. But trust me, a nearly three year old will keep me hopping, not to mention the new baby who will be coming soon.

So, pregnancy, loss of hubby's job, new job for hubby, moving and quitting my job are what I've been doing in the last five months! Oh, and I forgot to mention an international trip the end of June/first part of July to New Zealand to visit my husband's family. It was an awesome trip. I got to see his immediate family again and meet all kinds of new family and friends. Emily was a little trooper through all the travel ups and downs we experienced. What a good girl she was. She was often more patient than many of the adults we saw in the airports!

If I can remember how to post some photos, I'll try to do so. These are some photos from our trip to New Zealand (yes, our summer is their winter-that's why we are in winter clothes). I'm hoping to stay better on top of the blog, however am realistic that there is a little someone who is more of a priority right now.

Thanks for stopping by!!

Kim, Jeff and Emily

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Mommy is a SLACKER!!

Good grief! It's been a month or more since my last post. I can't seem to find the time to keep up but here I am again. It's late so I won't be doing anything fancy with the photos--just posting them in a line so you can at least see that we've been busy with our two year old this last month.

In February we attended a CNY dinner with our local FCC group. It was a big group in a very small room at restaurant but we met some new people and had fun. I pulled out an outfit from China that Emily hadn't worn yet and it fit wondefully (all except for the pants length but she has very short legs).

This past month has been a month of working on her alphabet and identifying letters by sight. She's really doing pretty well! I'm amazed at what she has learned in the last year. Jeff and I continue to receive requests from her to sign "The Wheels on the Bus..." She loves for she and I to sing on our way to daycare each morning. Some mornings we branch out and sing "Happy Birthday to You" or "Tinkle Tinkle Little Star" but we always revert back to the bus song. I must have led a sheltered childhood but I swear I never heard this song before we adopted Emily.

We went to the doctor last month for what only turned out to be a cold. She LOVES her new pediatrician, Dr. Nichols. We call him Dr. Luke. He's young and I wouldn't be surprised if he were a daddy himself. Anyway, at that visit she was a whopping 31 1/2 inches and weighed 25 pounds (although she was screaming and wouldn't stop moving when she got weighed so I doubt this is accurate). She's still little although I do notice her shoes we bought last fall are getting a little short on her.

We have been enjoying some nice spring weather here in Kansas so we of course have spent several hours on our swingset. She surprised me by climbing the little ladder to her slipper slide all by herself. And when she's on the swing she is always asking to go higher.

The recent time change has been a bit of a challenge for us. For the first week, she didn't want to get up out of bed in the morning. This last week it's been not wanting to go to bed at her normal bedtime of 8pm. So that's been extended most nights at least 30 minutes or so. We both have read much on the importance of sleep for little ones (kids her age should have at least 12-14 hours of sleep a night!) so we shoot for about 12 hours although I know she doesn't always get that as I often hear her talking to herself after we've put her to bed.

Hopefully I'll not go another month before posting again. Besides I'll have Easter photos to post by then!! Here's a variety of CNY, St. Patrick's Day and other random shots from the last month. I hope you enjoy.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

My Little Helper

One thing I learned in dog obedience training is that dogs have a strong need to please and also need to have a job or purpose to help them be happy. I think two year olds aren't much different. The last month or two have brought about an extra set of hands whenever I go about daily household chores. Emily literally drops what she is doing and comes running if she hears water being run in the kitchen sink and yells, "Dishes!" We are one of the few families left on earth without a dishwasher so yes, we do it the old fashioned way--with our hands. Mommy washes, Emily rinses and Daddy dries. While some of you might be feeling sorry for us for not having all the modern kitchen conveniences, we like this time; it is time we are all together as a family, working a task to completion and simply put--enjoying each other's company. Emily also is a big helper when it comes to doing laundry. She helps Mommy sort clothes, helps pick them up out of the basket so I can put them in the washer and when it's all done, she likes to fold and put away. In addition to Emily learning lots at the age, I think I am learning more. Gone are the days of trying to get things done quickly and most efficiently. I am happily learning to move at a slower pace, to practice my patience and enjoy the little things. Do I have to refold laundry after Emily helps? Yes. Does she put clothes in drawers differently than I might? Oh yes! But I know one day she will think helping Mom and Dad with household chores is a big drag. But right now, she takes pride in the "jobs" she volunteers to do around the house. And after all these years of doing these tasks by myself, I am happy to have a little shadow. :o)

Friday, February 2, 2007

Dr. Tomlinson, paging Dr. the ER stat!

Tonight we opened a little doctor's kit for Emily to play with. She actually got it for her birthday back in November but because of all the toys we have, we have kept a few things back and have been able to spread them out over a period of a few months. As I sit here writing this, Emily is in the other room operating on Daddy. Daddy is being a great sport and playing along. I realize it's a new toy to her but she is really enjoying playing "doctor." I suppose I should warn the dog and cats to look out...she will likely be looking for more patients. :-)

Maybe our little Emily will one day grow up to be a doctor, either to people or to animals. Maybe she'll be a pianist. Or a professional soccer player. Or perhaps an engineer or a botanist. Or maybe a teacher. Jeff and I have big dreams for our little girl. But whatever it is she chooses to do for a living, we most of all hope she grows up to become a compassionate, generous, loving, nonjudgmental and kind human being.