Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Birthday for a Princess

Lily is 5 and she's so excited!  For weeks now she's been asking "Who's birthday is next?" "How old will I be?" "Why am I going to be 5 and Michael is still 4?":) Of course she knows the answers to these questions, but continues to ask because she just can't stop talking about her birthday!
Her birthday is March 2nd, and we celebrated at home with her choice of.......
Dinner - McDonalds
Movie - Mary Poppins
Ice Cream - Chocolate
Well, I should say, some of us celebrated at home that evening.  We did have a little afternoon drama to shake things up a bit.  We were outside riding bikes and scooters when Alex and Tyler had a collision.  Alex on his bike survived unscathed, but Tyler fell off his scooter face first.  It was not pretty.  Lots of blood and 2 loose permanent teeth.  He doesn't handle blood very well (like his daddy!), and was pale and clammy.  Ended up taking him to the dentist to have his teeth checked, and the dentist sent us on to the ER because he thought Tyler would need stitches.  Thank goodness we live in a great neighborhood and one of our neighbors took charge of  the other kids until Ruben could get there. They were still able to pick up Lily's birthday dinner and eat their McDonalds in front of the tv while watching Mary Poppins.  Tyler ended up not needing stitches, and after checking for broken bones, and cleaning him up, we were sent home.  We made it home just before a terrible storm system blew through and just in time to watch Lily open her presents.

Here's Lily on her birthday and a picture of her taken 18 months ago when she first came home.  What a difference!

One of her favorite gifts.  A barbie slide.....just add water.
Tyler after the hospital.  His poor lip was so swollen that he couldn't smile.  I have another picture taken soon after the incident, but my sister though it too gory to publish! :)

I week after her birthday Lily had a princess party with her pre-k and neighborhood friends.  Check out the cake!  Lovingly hand made by her Mommy, Daddy and a good friend. (thanks Mary!......we'll have you over before Michael's party too1)
Princess decorations
Dressing up for the party
All the princesses working on a craft
Pin the crown on the princess.  (notice Michael watching.  The boys were supposed to be upstairs until cake time, but Michael just couldn't stay away!)

Notice Michael close by

Freeze Dance
Michael again!  He was showing the girls some of his dance moves!
The princesses headed straight for the dirt pile outside!
Happy Birthday sweet girl!  You have come so far in the last 18 months.  We have loved watching you grow and seeing you blossom into a lovely little girl.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Lunch with the Big Kids

Today I took Lily and Michael to the elementary school to have lunch with Tyler.  They were very excited to go to the big kid's school.  We went to Tyler's classroom and the teacher said they could line up with the rest of the class.  Michael jumped right in, put his hands in his pockets, and acted like he was just one of the kindergartners. (very cute!).  Lily was a little more timid, and held my hand.

They enjoyed their lunch and even asked for more :)  They both told me that they are ready for kindergarten!
The proud big brother showing his siblings the ropes......(and his green tongue!)

Monday, August 22, 2011

One Year Home

Wow........has it really been a year??  It doesn't seem that long ago that we were all in China, but yet it seems that Lily has always been with us.  Our little girl has changed so much in the year that she's been home.  From a shy, timid little girl who seemed even younger than her years, to a talkative, bright girl with a little bit of attitude! :)  And by "talkative", I mean she talks all the time!  She's our question girl.....always asking questions, most of which don't require an answer.  "why am I sitting in this chair and Tyler is sitting in that chair?", "why did I say please and thank you and Michael didn't?"  

Although she still wakes up a lot at night, we rarely see a night terror and she's much easier to calm.  She is also having less tantrums.  She's a perfectionist and can get upset if she doesn't do something right or if she's corrected, because of her behavior.  Sometimes the 'upset', can escalate into a full blown tantrum, but she's really beginning to learn to control her emotions at a more age appropriate level.  We're so proud of how much she's learning and how far she's come.

As for her health, for those who don't know, she was listed as a special needs child because of kidney stones.  They were discovered when she was 5 months old and we suspect melamine poisoning.  The Chinese milk scandal erupted in 2008 when infant formula in China was found laced with melamine (a substance used in plastics), to cause the milk to appear to have a higher protein content.  The melamine can cause kidney stones as well as kidney damage.  A number of infants in China lost their lives due to acute kidney failure.  We had Lily tested when we brought her home, and although there was a stone in each kidney, the kidneys themselves were not damaged.  She was retested again in June.  After a healthy diet and pleanty of liquids, one stone has completely dissolved, and the other is greatly reduced in size!!  We are so happy, and our hope is that the remaining stone will be gone by this time next year.

Lily is such a joy to our family!  She loves her brothers, and has become quite good at telling them what to do! 

The first 3 pictures were taken a year ago in China

Look below at what a difference a year makes!

We just love our little girl and can't wait to see what the next year brings!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pre-K Begins

It's back to school for the Pre-K duo. least for half the duo.  Michael was sick and wasn't able to go on his first day, but he still grabbed his school bag so he could be in the pictures. :)  Lily was very excited and didn't seem to mind at all going by herself.  They are both in the same class and will be attending Monday-Thursday, half days.

When Lily got home, she couldn't stop talking about her day.  She told me step by step everything they did including bathroom breaks!  She had a great day!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Back to School

The first day of elementary school is here!  Alex is starting 1st grade and Tyler is now in kindergarten!  They were both very excited on the first day and practically threw themselves out of bed.  (I know that early morning excitement will fade quickly :)  Tyler was so excited to be going to the big kid school with Alex.  They both met their new teachers the week before and Tyler took a trial ride on the bus, so they were ready!

Here they are fresh out of bed
Brothers..........Alex sat with his younger brother on the bus and watched out for him to make sure he got to his class ok.

The bus stop gang.
The bus!  The bus!  (Alex always has to be first on)

It was a great first day.  As soon as they got off the bus, Alex tossed me his back pack and ran inside to play.  Tyler, on the other hand, had me sit on the floor and close my eyes as he pulled out each piece of paper he bought home and told me all about his day.

Friday, August 12, 2011


Just like last year, Ruben's awesome boss let us use her tickets for a preseason football game.  What fun!  All the kids seemed more interested in the game this year, and not just the snacks.  (Michael, our sports nut, was the only one who really watched the game last year.)  At one point Lily even nudged me on the arm and said "Mommy, you gotta see this", pointing to the field and a new play! 

Every one's favorite part of the game was during half time.  Four pee wee football teams came out to play on the big field.  They were so much fun to watch.  Lily kept saying, "they're so cute"!

We all had such a good time.  We are very thankful to have such a giving friend so that our kids could experience this special treat.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Just Because........

She looks so adorable in her new dress!