Monday, January 29, 2007

Our Crazy Boys

Patrick insists on wearing one pant leg up - only with this particular pair of pants. If we pull it back down, he shoves it back up. He also decided that one of his pairs of shoes needs to have the velcro undone - only on one shoe...he fixes it after we put them on. We aren't really sure what this means...any ideas?

The boys love their hats and coats - mostly because they love to go "bye-bye." But they also enjoy dressing up with them.

Calvin put his own hat case you wondered.

Patrick actually started the dressing up - he really wanted the mittens on and of course, Calvin had to have them too.

Maybe we keep the thermostat set a little low?

Kitchen Stuff...

One of my favorite hobbies is reading cookbooks and cooking magazines, trying new recipes, and making up my own new recipes. [Side note: I don't like to do the resulting dishes.] I love Pampered Chef products and enjoyed having a party last week - I can't wait to try out my new kitchen "stuff."

To make room for my new things, I decided it was time to clean out the old things I'm not using (cleaning out once in 5 years is good, right?!). It helps that one of my little sisters is starting her own home so it all went to a good cause. I tried to be brutal but wasn't. When it comes to the kitchen - I just can't part with things. I collect dishes and I'm fairly sure my husband thinks I collect pretty much everything else, too. Oh well, he really doesn't complain.

The one area of the kitchen I have avoided (so far) is the tupperware cabinet. Does anyone else have trouble with their "plastics" cupboard? I can't stand it...mismatched lids and containers with chaos as the prevailing standard. I have tried and tried to make this cabinet workable but it doesn't last long. I am at a loss...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


After visiting the boys' doctor this morning, we have great news! Calvin is on the charts!!!! We are thrilled that he has made so much progress and our pediatrician couldn't believe it. He is in the 10-20th percentile for height and weight. Patrick remains in the 40-50th percentile. Calvin weighed in at 23lbs. even and Patrick was 25lbs. 9oz. They remain 2 inches apart in height but have each grown 2 inches. We also had both boys evaluated by 1st Steps (an early intervention service) last week and neither of them need any special services at this point - also great news! These are a couple of silly pictures - they are the kings of silly these days. :) We continue to be amazed as we watch them change and grow!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

1st Snow!

Today was the first real snow we've had here in Indy. We took advantage of it and introduced the boys to snow (we think they were too young to experience it last year). They had a great time and so did we. Our front yard did not look particularly good afterwards. :) Calvn thought the snow tasted great and was even picking it up off the foyer floor when we came inside - yuck! Patrick was a bit more reserved in his feelings about it all. Here are some pictures:

Bundled up and studying the white, powdery stuff. :)

Calvin had a little trouble getting up from his tumbles - maybe too many layers?

Patrick just stood and observed.

Calvin and Patrick making their first snowman - they had a little help.

All the boys with their finished product - our lawn decoration!


What a GREAT game!!!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

1 Year!

We joined the blogging world one year ago today with this post. We’ve done better some months than others but overall we have really enjoyed having someplace to write. Here are some of our favorite posts: (Alaina’s posts) Pippi, Embarrassment, Sushi, More TP, Memories (of the 80s), You Named Your Daughter What?! and (Andrew’s posts) Andrew’s Dream Car, St. Patrick’s Day, Home Improvement, Books.

We’re taking a poll – which post did you enjoy the most? You can choose from the ones above or nominate your own :) (The question of favorite is, of course, open to interpretation – is it the funniest, the most thoughtful, the most entertaining story, the post that received the most comments . . . ? And note: we’re not including here any of our posts on Our Boys’ blog, which would complicate matters greatly.)

Happy 1st Birthday, Blog! Here’s to another year of blogging fun!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Time Flies

It's been 3 months since we arrived home with our kids. You can see new pictures and read our thoughts here.

This year will be 11 years since I moved back to Indiana (Aug.), 10 years since I graduated high school (May), 6 years since I graduated college (also May), 5 years since I married my sweetheart (March), 1 year since becoming a mom (Oct.), and a celebration of a birthday getting closer to 30 (June).

Sometimes it seems like yesterday that I was playing outside with my siblings, working hard in school, and babysitting as often as possible to make money. I remember lemonade stands that earned me enough money to buy ice cream from the ice cream truck, dressing up for hours on end, perming my bangs - only (yeah, definitely not a good look), riding my bike, planning my teal and purple wedding, camping with cousins, and just enjoying carefree youthfulness. Where has the time gone? The years seem to go by faster than ever. I must learn to enjoy each day, each milestone, each passing year. We don't get a second chance, no re-dos, no pauses. I must live life to the fullest for His glory.

3 Months

Today marks 3 months since we arrived back on U.S. soil with our boys. We left as two and came home as four. We met them exactly 4 months ago on September 15. How blessed we are! We cannot believe how much they have changed and grown. We see their personalities blossoming, their skills developing, and their understanding of English improving. They bring us joy and delight every day. They bring us to our knees as we realize our inadequacy and strengthen our faith as we see their child-like trust. They are learning to love each other, pray, obey, read books, and sleep. :) We are so thankful for God's gift to us. We feel we have known Calvin and Patrick forever. Truly these children were born in our hearts. We rejoice in God giving us the desire of our hearts.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

A Novel Toilet

Long time readers of this blog will recall that I have previously written about working on toilets. I didn’t have to replace the tank on ours, but if I would have had to, it would have been interesting to have used one like the one pictured. You can read the article, but one can be purchased for $299, it fits most toilets, and the 2.2-gallon aquarium part can be easily removed to clean it. The tank holds two and a half gallons, which is reportedly enough pressure for flushing. Are you interested?

Personally, I think I’d rather have an aquarium on the opposite side of the bathroom – where you could actually see it more. But that wouldn’t be nearly as novel.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


We have been sick for the past 10 days or so. Andrew has managed to escape - so far. But even the dog is out of sorts. We all have some sort of respiratory stuff which seems so manifest itself a little differently in each person. After battling a cold for a week it has decidedly settled in my sinuses. I woke up this morning with the realization that I most definitely felt horrible and that I most definitely have a sinus infection. Hopefully, we will get better soon - in the mean time, we are staying home and taking it as easy as you can with two kids.

Monday, January 08, 2007


So, we have very occasionally watched the new show Deal or No Deal. I don't know if any of you have seen this show but it's strangely addictive. We find ourselves wondering what we would do if faced with the various scenarios. We choose numbers and see if we're right. In the end, we are disappointed with the loser and suprised by a big winner. Anyone else watched this show?

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Then and Now

We see the boys every day so it's easy to overlook the changes in them, but I just came across a picture of Calvin & Patrick from October - placed next to a recent one. :) We've seen the most change in Calvin but Patrick has definitely lost his baby look.

Calvin & Cous-Cous

We discovered this week that Calvin loves cous-cous. I’m not exaggerating - he LOVES it. Whenever I tried feeding him something else, he wouldn’t eat it unless there was also at least an equal amount of cous-cous on the spoon. And whenever his tray was empty of cous-cous, he demanded more.

Oh yes, and did I say that he liked to feed himself? He did it Moroccan style - with his hands. Not just fingers - he used his whole hand - fingers, thumb, and palm, to scoop it up and shove it in his mouth.

Here are a few pictures depicting the event. Also one of Patrick, to show the relative neatness of the two boys; while it is true Patrick wasn’t quite as enthusiastic about the cous-cous, he did eat it – just a little more neatly :)

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Of Novel Bibliographies

It’s been almost a month since I’ve written on this blog. It hasn’t been for lack of ideas. I usually have at least an idea or two per day – usually inspired by something I’ve run across at work and/or while surfing the net. So I send myself a link or a snippet of an idea. Recently I was cleaning out my account and found scores if not hundreds of such emails. Unfortunately most of them never made it to the posting stage. So a specific part of my blogging resolution (yes, I’ve joined Alaina on that one) is to actually implement the idea and post some blogs! :)

So, an immediate application: In a December 5 article in the New York Times entitled “Loved His New Novel, And What a Bibliography,” Julie Bosman describes a new phenomenon in novel writing – adding bibliographies to novels. In The Castle in the Forest, author Norman Mailer includes an alphabetical list of 126 authors upon which he relied for writing his novel. Apparently there is some controversy in the novel world as to whether this is appropriate. After all, novels are neither known for their scholarly attributes nor read and relied upon as such. So why should the novel contain a bibliography?

Personally, especially for historical fiction, I think it’s a great idea. There have been a number of books which I have read (I’m thinking specifically of Bodie Thoene’s Zion Chronicles series) that made me particularly interested in a specific period of history, and I wondered – how much of the story is based on historical fact? If such novels contained bibliographies of works upon which they relied or which inspired the story, it would be much easier for one such as me to learn more about the actual events.

On the other hand, I wouldn’t expect a bibliography for a novel such as Grisham’s The Firm. At the same time, I can see one for his The Testament – especially regarding the Pantanal, the “ecological gem” at the heart of the story.

What do you think? Have you ever wished a novel had a bibliography?

Children's Museum

On Monday, we went to the Children's Museum for the first time with the boys. We didn't know if they would enjoy it yet but they definitely did. They especially loved the playscape and spent almost 2 hours running around, playing, and exploring. Calvin tried a huge mouthful of sand before either Mommy or Daddy noticed...he actually thought it was okay but we did not. :) Calvin was mesmerized by the glass sculpture in the middle of the museum and both of them enjoyed playing with the glass piece replicas. It was such a fun day!


There is a running joke in my family that I am origamically challenged. And it's true. I remember being given a pack of beautiful origami paper with an accompanying instruction book. I thought, "how fun!" Not fun. I couldn't make anything with my lovely paper. The most basic folds baffled me and none of my creations looked like the pictures in the book. I gave up. So everyone in my family knows that origami is not my thing and everyone gets a great deal of pleasure out of this fact.

This year, I decided that my "fun goal" would be origami. I bought a page-a-day calendar (50% off) of origami - paper and instructions. I have made it through day 4 fairly successfully though not without difficulty. I am keeping each of my projects to give my family. So far, I've folded a bird, dog head, penguin, and sled.

I will prove them wrong. I will learn to fold paper. I will conquer my origami fears. After all, I have this whole year to master this art form - okay, maybe not master. :)

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

On Being a Grown-up

Sometimes being a grown-up is no fun. Today, I spent the morning taking down all the Christmas decorations, tree, etc. And I thought to myself, "self, your Mom used to do alot of things for you." Ah, those were the days...though I didn't properly appreciate them at the time.

Sometimes I wish housecleaning, cooking, and laundry would just do themselves. The realization that I may never actually achieve everything all at once is a little depressing. I love having everything organized, labeled, and stored. Andrew makes fun of me because I think plastic boxes are the greatest thing and I can't properly clean and organize without them - a brown cardboard box just won't do.

My latest project has been sorting through my many cooking magazines and books. I'm cutting, copying, and pasting the recipes I think I will use onto 3x5 cards and then disposing of the rest. Lest you be concerned, I'm not pitching the cookbooks - just deciding which ones will have the place of honor in my kitchen and which ones will be stored upstairs. So, here's to a new year and a hopefully a more organized one.

Monday, January 01, 2007


Yeah, we haven't done a very good job of keeping this blog up - our New Year's Resolution is to work on that. :) We do update the boys' blog more frequently so please feel free to check that out.

We had a good Christmas and New Year's. We went to the Children's Museum today and had a fantastic time...we haven't been in years and were glad for an excuse to go back. They have a wonderful blown glass display - absolutely gorgeous (even the boys' enjoyed it).

2006 was one of the hardest and best years of our lives. We thank all of you who prayed and encouraged us during it. We look forward to 2007 - perhaps a year with a little less change...we'll see.

More Christmas Pictures

Here are some other pictures from the boys' 1st you can see they had a great time and definitely figured out the present thing! :)