Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Email from my brother in law (aka Uncle Te Tee):
I think you misinterpreted the mini texas apron. It was meant for you and Chris. It is a wine bottle bib/decoration.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Lia's Baptism Anniversary Gifts

Lia's baptism anniversary was August 17th and her Godparents, Steven and Stacey sent her a package today! When I got the mail, I told Lia she had a package from her Aunt Stacey and Uncle Te Tee... you should have seen her eyes light up. She doesn't get packages very often, but when she does... it is generally something good! Here is the text of the card:

"Happy Baptism Day Lia! Uncle Te Tee picked out this blue glass window decoration to remind you of your Godparents and how much we love you. The three crosses is the symbol of Las Cruces. When Las Cruces was discoverd years ago there were three crosses. Some believe that Las Cruces was once a place for Christian settlers. I personally like the window decoration because it symbolizes Uncle Te Tee, me and you as well as the Holy Trinity. We Love You! Auntie Stacey and Uncle Te Tee."

The crosses are beautiful. And the stickers were a big hit. Lia LOVES stickers!

And the other item in her care package was a doll sized Longhorn apron. I think it was meant for a barbie doll... but it worked out beautifully on her giraffe - the lovey of choice for the moment.
Thank you!!! We love you and miss you very much.

Happy Birthday Mary Katherine!

Mary Katherine's family threw her a really fun Dr. Seuss party for her 5th Birthday. Everyone in the family dressed up and it was a lot of fun.

They had parachutes for the little kids to play with.

Face painting! (A first for Lia... she was too timid at other parties and events)

What a creative family!

Happy Birthday Blessings

A lot of little things added up to make my birthday special this year:
1. Emily wrapped up her favorite Saint book and gave it to me because it was the "best thing she had to give me." We read about St. Monica - her feast day is on my birthday - She was a Saint becasue she loved her son, worried over him, and prayed constantly. I can do that too!
2. Pizza at the park with my family.
3. Girl talk and breakfast out with Peg! (priceless)
4. Dinner and dessert with friends!
5. Flowers.
6. Cute pajamas from my parents. (Mommy Jamas according to Lia)
7. Carrot cake.
Lucky me!

Happy Birthday to Me!

My birthday was last Friday and we went out to the fountains to have pizza and celebrate. David took my birthday picture.

And David took this picture of his Daddy. What a unique way to gain the the perspective of a 4 year old!
Sweet Lia.

And a clown!

And fountains to play in.

Poetry Memorization

The Mother of Divine Grace syllabus has my kids memorizing poetry which is really sweet. Emily is working on The Owl and the Pussy-Cat by Edward Lear. It is rather long so we are focusing on the first stanza this week. To help them, I make puzzles out of the verses by cutting up the lines and mixing them up. It has worked very well! When that becomes too easy, I just cut them further to include only a few words rather than a whole line.

Singapore Math - Kindergarten Stuff

Singapore Math - for the Earlybird Kindergartner has us doing these funky 3D visualization excercises in our favorite 'Look and Talk' worksheets. The parent instructions said to find a cube that looked like the picture and have your child orient it to look like the picture... Well I was inspired to doctor up some playing dice with my handy dandy sticky back paper. So I probably spent 10-15 minutes making the materials and then David did the excercise in about 30 seconds. :-)

Cabbage Juice Indicator... who knew?

Here we have distilled water (neutral), baking soda water (basic) and lemon juice (acid). Add a little cabbage juice and voila.... we have color change!

The neutral distilled water turned purple.
The basic baking soda water turned green.
The acidic lemon juice turned pink.

And for fun, we tested vinegar which is supposed to be acidic. We got more of a red color than pink... indicating acidic but perhaps less acidic than the lemon juice??? Very interesting.
Then we added the acid to the base and kept pouring back and forth to verify they neutralized each other.... and they did.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Emily loves her Fairy Garden... Thank you again Nana!

Here is the Fairy Garden, Emily's birthday gift from Nana. This is one of the best gifts ever! Emily couldn't wait to plant the seeds and get it started. We were very happy to see sprouts in a few days. Needless to say, the sprouts grew very quickly! She planted the seeds on August 16th and this picture was taken just 8 days later. Emily loved painting the planter, the mushrooms, toad house and rocks. Aren't the colors beautiful? Emily has had a ball "strategically" placing the colored rocks, gem stones, and adding the fairy dust to make everything sparkle. Every morning, Emily checks on her garden, adds water, rearranges all the pieces and spends quite a bit of time admiring it all. Thank you Nana!

The little fairy moves about the garden as the day goes by. She even has the homemade umbrella (the one Emily made at the Puppet party) to keep her shaded.

And if you wanted your very own Fairy Garden, I found it on Amazon - Enchanted Fairy Garden Kit (Creativity for Kids)

Animal Critters - O is for Owl

I am so excited because my blog is finally caught up to date. Here are some pictures of what we actually did today... Tuesday, August 24th. We love this alphabet handwriting book and making the alphabet critters. I shy away from it because it tends to make a mess... but goodness, they love it.

You can see David's handwritten O's here. There is no better bribery than, "You have to write your O's before we can do the craft." Works every time. ;-)
He is very proud of it.

And Lia made one too! The big pink thing at the top was just something Lia insisted on sticking there. It kind of looks like a hat... It's funny because I'm generally focusing on David and his work when we do these things. I provide Lia with the materials and let her do her own thing to appease her... but she actually does great work on her own! And what better way to learn the alphabet.

Happy Birthday Mary Elizabeth

We were invited to a puppet themed birthday party last Sunday. What a creative party! Mary Elizabeth's family provided all the materials to make sock and stick puppets. Of course, my kids loved this!

Emily made a stick girl puppet with an umbrella.

And her is David's sock puppet. Didn't it come out great?

And here is David and his friend Jacob (behind the stage curtain) putting on a show with their puppets. I see you!

And here is Emily's sock puppet. Gosh I love those two missing teeth. :-)

And all the kids watching each others puppet shows. Fun!

Mommy, I love to mop!

"It is my favorite chore."

(I had to document this)

David is teaching himself!

David and I practice handwriting every day. David plays with the USA map puzzle every day. And all on his own, he took to copywork using the Magna Doodle. And he delights in it! Sometimes he copies the state names and other times he actually traces the state's shape from the puzzle pieces and asks me to identify the state. I am embarrassed to say I cannot identify very many states by their outline alone! I guess that is a good thing for me to work on!

Chris is home from China/Thailand!

Chris hasn't been on a business trip since before Lia was born in 2008. When he isn't travelling, it's a sign that there isn't a lot of work so it is very nice to see lots of work for him this year!

So this trip, he flew to Shanghai and took a bullet train to Nanjing. This bullet train went over 200 mph! While there, he had a little time to see the Confusious temple.

Confusious taught two things.
1. Control Yourself.
2. Be Kind to Others

(Good things to keep in mind!)

A fuzzy cell phone picture of the temple... but at least you can get an idea. After his visit to China he went to Bankok (Thailand) for another client. It was a big trip for him... but we are very glad to have him home!

Thank you Nana and Grandpa!!!

The pirate and penguin art kits have been put to good use! David was very proud to color in the lines and really liked putting on the stickers and jewels. He worked very diligently till he finished without taking a break!

Now Lia, who is always paying attention to what her siblings are doing, informed me that she wanted to do her penguin present too. I put Emily to work to "help" her with the caveat that "help" meant doing only what Lia asked her to do and not to make her upset. This was a big challenge because Lia likes to do as much herself as possible but gets frustrated because she can't. So helping is not always easy! All that aside, Emily was a great big sister and is learning the delicate skills needed to appease a 2 year old. :-)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Emily's Birthday Party

Emily had a birthday party at the pool this year and invited a few friends. Here are big smiles from her friends Rebecca and Maci.

Emily chose a brownie/cookie combination cake and decorated it herself. The princess cake toppers came from Birthday Express and the Cinderella actually had a little light so it glowed.

Here is everyone getting ready to sing Happy Birthday. Emily told me, "Mom it is so much FUN to be the birthday girl."

And opening the presents is really fun too. Happy day!

The Famous Daddy Light Bulb Show!

Looking at this picture, you might wonder what my little ones are looking at. Well, they were told the Daddy Light Bulb Show was going to begin so they rushed upstairs to gather blankets and pillows... (like for movie night) and got comfortable.

So yes, the kids anxiously wait for 3 out of 4 lights to go out in the living room so Daddy will bring out his handy dandy long extension lightbulb changing gadget. It is such a treat for them. Funny huh?

August 11, 2010 - Happy 7th Birthday Emily!

Emily wanted to celebrate her 7th birthday with a special outing to the Houston Children's Museum. We went there last year on her birthday and it obviously made quite an impression! This year, we chose to go from 2-6pm with hopes of avoiding the big summer crowds that tend to go in the morning. We made the right choice! The big daycare groups and summer camps were loading up their busses to go home when we arrived... (score!) So we had no wait to get in, the museum wasn't too crowded and by 4:30 we pretty much had the place to ourselves. Good to know.

Emily and David wanted to climb through the big web first...

On the scooters.

Virtual Dodge Ball.

So the object in dodge ball is to avoid the red ball. Lia, and the other little ones, chose to jump on the red ball. The bigger smarter kids thought this was pretty funny and told her, "You're Out!"

And I think we all enjoyed the HEB shopping experience in Kidtropolis. My children are very comfortable at HEB since I am there literally every other day. Did you notice Lia made sure to pick up some ice cream. That's my girl.