... Jazzie mentions to me this morning that she wishes she had grown inside my belly. What? Where is this coming from?
I took her in my arms and told her that I sometimes wish she had as well, but that she grew in my heart instead and that I could not love her any more even if she had grown inside me. Then she asked me what her Chinese mommy and daddy look like. We have had similar conversations many times, but I thought this one was going to be different. Something about Jazzie's face told me that she was really thinking about some things. So I carry Jazzie to the couch, put her on my lap and get ready for what I think is going to be a deep conversation. I once again tell Jazzie that if she has any questions, she should never hesitate to ask them and that I will answer them the best I can. Jazzie thinks about it for a moment, then says: "I have no questions, because you are my mom and daddy is my daddy".
And that was it for the deep conversation I thought we were going to have. Even though Jazzie is obviously thinking about how she came to be with us, to her I'm her mom and Matt's her dad.
We had a nice and lazy Sunday today. Matt got up early to pick basil from our garden. Now you have to understand that when I pick basil, I simply break a stem from the plant and then take off the leaves that I need. Matt on the other hand is extremely patient and picks the basil leaf by leaf. At our old house we had a huge garden and one day Matt picked herbs for almost three hours. We have a much smaller garden now, but he still managed to be out there for about an hour and a half picking basil. He loves being in his garden. I guess it's therapeutic for him:
Tahlia has been obsessed with the book "Curious George goes to the hospital". In the past week I have read it several times a day, every day. Needless to say, Matt and I are both a little tired of reading "Curious George goes to the hospital". However, Jazzie came to our rescue today and offered to read it to Tahlia. It was so sweet to see my big girl reading a book to my little girl :-)
And look what I found on clearance at Party City this afternoon for three bucks:
It was a big hit with Tahlia, but of course anything with Tinkerbell on it would be ;-)
Jazzie's glasses are lost. I have looked everywhere for them and they are nowhere to be found. She has an appointment with her eye doctor next month and I can't decide whether to replace the glasses now or wait until after her appointment just in case her prescription has changed.
I am still catching up with laundry from our camping trip.
Several people have asked me where we went camping. We went here, which is only about an hour and a half East of Cincinnati.
It is hot here and it is making me grumpy.
The girls asked me if they could clean the window sills. For the past 30 minutes they have not only cleaned the window sills, but cabinets, trim and furniture as well. If I had known before how much fun they would have with a few cleaning wipes, I would have had them clean every week! It smells lemony fresh in here :-)
I am totally fed up with the girls whining and fighting. Now I know how my mom used to feel when my sister and I would go at it. All this fighting has not made for a lot of proud mommy moments today.
I totally messed up my diet while on our trip, but I am back on track today. The good thing is that I managed to walk every day while we were camping, so that should have burned some of the extra calories I consumed :-)
Jazzie and Tahlia's birthdays are coming up in July. At first I was going to have a party for them here at home, but after attending another party at our local Jump Zone, the girls begged me to have their party there. Since it will be a lot less work for me and there will be no clean-up involved, I agreed. I wonder how much longer I can get away with combining their birthdays together.
Next weekend we are gettingtogether with a couple of families that we traveled to China with when we adopted Jazzie. We have remained in contact with eachother over the years and I am so excited to see them again.
I've been coveting this one particular refrigerator for a long time and come Thursday, it will be in my kitchen. I'm excited :-)
We returned from our annual family trip and we had a great time. We played lots of games, swam a lot, ate way too many cookies and had good old family fun. The girls are exhausted after five days of running around, having fun and staying up way too late ;-)
Tahlia loved pushing her little cousins around in this little turtle:
Jazzie and cousin Isaiah:
These two girls have gotten so close over the years. They spent many hours playing games and doing crafts:
A camping trip is not complete without s'mores:
The go carts were a HUGE hit:
Not just the little ones - but the big ones, too :-)
We went down to the lake every day to swim, make sand castles and go down the two big water slides:
Tahlia and her best buddy, uncle Larry:
All that swimming made for a very tired little girl:
Tahlia and her pappa:
Our cabins - I like this way of camping MUCH better than the whole tent thing. We had air conditioning, a bathroom, a kitchen and a coffee pot. All the essentials :-)
And now it is Friday night, almost 8 PM. The girls are in bed (I wanted to make sure they were in bed early tonight), I have my fourth load of laundry in the dryer and I am getting ready to open a bottle of wine, because I have a date with my DVR ;-)
I will not be posting this week, because we will be on our annual family camping trip. I use the word camping very loosely since we will be in cabins with air conditioning, a kitchen and a bathroom, but that is the only way this city girl does camping :-)
Jazzie and I did some baking together this afternoon while Tahlia played outside with friends. Tahlia LOVES being outside and it is hard for me to even get her to come in to eat dinner. Jazzie on the other hand would much rather stay in and quietly play a game or do a craft by herself. Sometimes I feel bad that she spends so much time alone (even though she likes it that way), but she is always up for helping me in the kitchen.
We have a big family reunion coming up this weekend and a family camping trip next week, so we have been prepping for it :-)
We made a double batch of these WONDERFUL molasses cookies from Pioneer Woman. Like she says, they are seriously delicious!
I love being in the kitchen. And even though I am most happy when it is just me cooking or baking up a storm with all the time in the world, I also love it when I get to share it with one of my girls...
I had some wonderful visitors today. She got here first and we were able to have some great chit chat. After a while we picked up the girls from camp, had a nice picnic lunch and then took the girls to their swim lesson. It was great to have Stacy there andto have her see how proud Jazzie was of herself :-) The best part was to have an extra pair of hands afterwards to help me get the girls dressed. Stacy, can you come up here every Wednesday to help me out???
After returning home from swim class, she showed up with cute little Soph. It had been a while since I last saw these two and I had a great time chit chatting and watching Sophie and Jazzie cook up a storm and serve us tons of food :-)
Later in the afternoon, she showed up with her cute little Boo. Even with all the toys that were out, C seemed to prefer Lily's dog bed.
After some more chit chatting we had dinner. I think I was able to bring Mare back to her childhood with some yummy Indonesian food. Little C was also really digging it! Here is a picture of Jazzie and Sophie at dinner:
Can you believe I didn't take any other pictures? I was too busy chasing after kids, cooking and talking; lots of talking.
Stacy: thanks for coming all this way to visit. Each time we get together the day goes by too fast and I love that you were there for the girls' first swim class. Thanks for bringing the treats, too; they were yummy!
Mare and Soph: I loved that you were able to come and visit. I think Sophie had fun and I hope it was a nice change from the RMH. Thank you so much for the gifts for the girls, the Indonesian food packages and those terrific mommy cards. They are awesome and I love them!
C & C: I know things are crazy for you guys right now, but it was great to see you again. And remember that I am here for anything you might need.
We have lived in our current house for almost four years, and last week I finally got the deck I have been wanting for so long. We opted to do other home improvements first (like getting granite counter tops, finishing our basement and remodeling our bathroom).
Even though we still need to stain our deck, I have been enjoying sitting on it SO much. This morning the girls and I had our breakfast on the deck and it was like I have been envisioning it for so long. We just sat there listening to the birds, watching the hummingbirds drink from our feeders, looking at the all the greenery around us and just chit chatting. I loved it and I think the girls did, too.
Tomorrow I am looking forward to sitting on the deck for lots of chit chat with her, her and her. I know it is going to be a great visit :-)
Both girls insisted on 3 sugar donuts for breakfast. I know it's not the healthiest breakfast in the world, but hey, it's summer break! And each girl was only able to eat 1 1/2 donuts anyway...
The girls and I spent a few hours at our neighborhood pool this afternoon. Unlike the last time, Jazzie actually enjoyed herself. I figured out that right after lunch is a good time to go, because hardly anybody else is there.
Tahlia and our neighbor K. They are best buddies :-)
Jazzie decided that the temperature of the water in the big puddle was MUCH warmer than the pool, so she spent quite a bit of time just hanging out there:
It is SO much nicer to see my girl smile at the pool instead of scream :-)
Yesterday afternoon the girls had an argument about whether we should go to the neighborhood pool or not. Tahlia wanted to go, Jazzie didn't. I know, what kid does NOT want to go to the pool, right? At one point Jazzie tells me: "Okay, I'll go to the pool if you play one game of Uno with me". Great, problem solved. We play the game and as soon as we were done, Jazzie tells me she changed her mind and does not want to go to the pool after all. I asked her if she lied to me when she said she would go to the pool just so that I would play a game with her. Her answer was yes...
When Jazzie was in first grade, she wrote this book called "Words of Wisdom". In it are sayings like "Treat others the way you want to be treated", "Learn to listen and listen to learn", etc. Also included in her book are "Always keep a promise", "Never tell a lie" and "Always keep your end of a deal you make". I explained to Jazzie that she not only lied to me, she also did not keep her promise, and she did not keep her end of the deal she made. I told her I was disappointed and that she had to go to the pool with Tahlia and myself because that was the promise she made after all.
So I made Jazzie change into her bathing suit, I slather sunscreen on her and we make our way to the pool. The entire time she is crying and telling me she does not want to go and that she is not going to go in the pool. When we get there, we find a seat and get all situated. Tahlia and I get in the pool and Jazzie is sitting on a chair with her arms crossed, still crying. Then she starts screaming that she hates the pool and that she wants to go home. I get out of the pool and tell her that she needs to stop screaming or she will be grounded. I get back into the pool and every time I look over at Jazzie, she is signing that she hates the pool. Smart little thing; at least she's not screaming :-)
At this point I am wondering if she does not like the pool because of her cochlear implants. It is true that Tahlia would MUCH rather go to the pool than Jazzie. And the last few times that we have been at the pool, I observed Jazzie watching her friends play in the water while she is off on her own. She cannot hear anything in the pool because her implants are off and I wonder if she is feeling isolated.
After a while Jazzie comes over and tells me she is getting hot. I asked her if she wants to come in the pool with me and she finally agrees. She gets in and just like that her mood is over. She is giggling, laughing and having fun. Remember that a mere 15 minutes earlier she told me "hates the pool", but now she is telling me that the "pool is so joyful". We ended up having a very fun time at the pool despite of all the drama that went on before.
Some of you have asked me about Jazzie's glasses. I know she doesn't always wear her glasses in the pictures, but I assure you that she does wear them for most of the day, and especially in school.
The reason there have been some pictures of Jazzie without her glasses lately is because one of the glasses fell out of the frame last week and I needed to take the time to go and get it fixed. Also, for some reason these new frames are causing some issues with her cochlear implants. The glasses are not fitting as nicely as her previous frames and we are constantly having to adjust them. I think the part that goes behind her ear is too thick and her implants get in the way and cause the glasses to either be crooked or slide down her nose.
We have an appointment with the eye doctor in a few weeks and I am anxious to see how things are going with Jazzie's eyes (Jazzie has amblyopia). Ever since she started wearing glasses, her eyes have continued to improve. The only worry Jazzie has each time we go back is whether or not the doctor is going to tell her that she is going to need to wear an eye patch again.
Now I'm off to enjoy a game of Othello with Jazzie. It's a new favorite :-)
Jazzie has been suffering from seasonal allergies for a long time. And when I say suffering, I mean really suffering. When her allergies are at their worst, she is plain miserable. We've tried every over the counter medicine and nothing worked.
Several weeks ago I called Jazzie's ENT to see if there was anything he could do. He gave us a prescription for Singu*lair and referred us to an allergist. The Singu*lair has really helped and yesterday Jazzie saw the allergist. It turns out that Jazzie is allergic to:
Cats Molds Ragweed Grass Trees Weeds
Basically, she is allergic to the outdoors! Her allergies do always seems to be worse when we go to the woods or a park. There really isn't anything we can do about her allergies, except treat her daily with medication and give her extra when we know she is going to be around cats or when she is going to be spending an extended amount of time outdoors.
My poor girl - first it's her ears, then her eyes, then her teeth and now this. But as always, she is still smiling and she remains my little Super Star!
I decided to have a little surprise waiting for Jazzie after she came home from school yesterday:
The song "School's out for summer" was stuck in my head all day yesterday!
The brownies were as much for me as they were for the girls after my emotional day yesterday. Thanks to all my Face*book friends who suggested I should cheer myself up with food and wine ;-)
Words spoken by Jazzie after she and Tahlia had been fighting for a while: "Mom, I'm tired of having her around". My response: "Sorry girlfriend, but you've got to find a way to deal with her since she is here to stay". LOL - Jazzie hasn't said anything like that since we first came home with Tahlia and she told us to take her back home to China :-)
And here is my little model checking herself out in the mirror saying how "nice and round her butt is". What in the world? Where does she get this stuff? I assure you that she has never seen me do that or heard me say those words.
This morning was the First Grade Award Ceremony at Jazzie's school. Here is Jazzie waiting in line to receive her certificate from the principal and her teacher:
Way to go Jazzie!
After the ceremony all the parents went back to the classroom where the kids sang some songs and where the parents got to say goodbye to the teacher. As I went to hug Jazzie's teacher I was overcome by emotions and I could not get anything out. How do you thank a teacher who has meant so much to your daughter and who helped her get through a difficult time at the beginning of the school year? How do you thank a teacher for being so patient, loving and willing to learn about Jazzie, her hearing loss and cochlear implants? How do you thank a teacher for not only making an impact on your child, but on you as well? It's a good thing I wrote everything I wanted to tell her in a letter, because all I could get out this morning was a very tearful "thank you".
When Matt and I observed the first grade teachers before Jazzie even started at her current school, we picked Mrs. O. for her teacher because we knew she would be everything that Jazzie needed. And indeed she has been all that and much more. We have been so lucky...
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. ~ Dr. Suess
Tomorrow is Jazzie's last day of school. The year has flown by, but Jazzie has had an extremely successful year. I was nervous at first, but she has done better than we could have ever hoped for and her teacher deserves a lot of credit for it. I am going to write a letter to her teacher just to let her know how much she has meant to Jazzie this year and to me as well. It is going to be sad saying goodbye to her but I am SO glad to have had a teacher like her for Jazzie.
It is hot today. Like 90 degrees hot and I do not like it; it makes me grumpy.
Tahlia started Princess Camp this week and LOVES it.
I am down 27 pounds and I feel so much better. I am going to keep going. Every time I try something on and it's too big, I put it in the Vietnam Vets bag. No excuses for keeping any of it.
How do you handle a situation where you feel that everything is one sided and you are starting to resent other people for it? I've been trying to figure that one out for the last two weeks.
We finally got someone to build our deck. They started on it yesterday and I cannot wait to sit on my deck with a cup of coffee or a nice cocktail :-)
I told Tahlia earlier that if she interrupted me one more time while I'm on the phone, she would be grounded. A few minutes later she came in with her little girlfriend and had her ask me a question. "Is that interrupting, momma?", she asked. Hmmm... clever.
I have two photography sessions booked this month and I am hoping to get more.
And last but not least, here are a few pictures from Field Day at Jazzie's school last week. There's nothing wrong with Jazzie's t-shirt, I just warped the name of the school; in case you were wondering :-)