Sunday, June 28, 2009


Well we certainly had a jammed packed weekend once again. I'm a little sad I have to admit. I feel like this summer is flying by way too quickly. Tony had to remind me that summer officially just started. Good news is that Tony and I accomplished a lot this weekend in the garden. We are nearing completion with 1 or 2 more weekends devoted to the outside. With all of this rain it has been really hard to accomplish anything outside.

As a side note, Tony has been working long hours and I have been re-connecting with old friends. Which has been really nice for me. It's so nice to reminisce about old times and just laugh. We have also been working on paperwork for Halainah's mei mei. You would think that we would be experts by now having completed an adoption already. But we have already run into a few road blocks. I just take a deep breath, say a little prayer and move on. That always helps:)

Halainah keeps us laughing. She gets so excited at the littlest things. And everyday she does or says something new. Let's see today, she started saying, "Boo." Tony and I always peek around to find her and say "Boo" so now she plays the game. She loves to mimic whatever it is that we are doing, whether it be pretending to fill her sippy cup with water at the water cooler. Or pretending to sweep the floor or trying to tickle her dada because he's tickling her. It's perfect for me because when it's cleaning time, I give her a little dust rag and tell her to do it just like mommy. The furniture might not get dusted but hey it keeps her busy.

We ended the weekend with a couple of hours of pool time . We bought one of those family center pools so that Dada can sit in it with her. Not mama...I am not a fan of freezing cold water. The pool is huge for her and when she falls the water went up to her Chin. She didn't like that too much. But she certainly loved being in the water with her Dada. She had a beautiful smile from ear to ear the whole time. You know, I never noticed it before, but I think she has small dimples when she smiles. She is so stinking cute and such a happy girl, even when her lips are quivering because the water was too cold.

Enjoy the pool pics. And Halainah's super cute bathing suit was sent to her by Joyce. Thank you so much Joyce...doesn't she look cute in it?

Look at all that hair. It is finally growing in!

Dada squirting Halainah with water.

Looking at Dada making sure he won't squirt her again!

So happy in the pool!

We laughed hysterically when she made this face...the water was really cold!

Standing in the sun trying to warm up a little!

Thank you dada for taking me in the pool today!

Warming up with a nice big towel!

Isn't she adorable? I just love those little dimples!

Friday, June 26, 2009


Halainah and I had a fantastic week. Halainah took her first trip to the Big Apple (post coming soon) staring mommy, Aunt Ann, and cousins Sultana and Tyler. We had a great day. We met up with old friends for a play date and went for Halainah's very first photo shoot with Aunt Deb and cousins Norman and Cassandra.

Oh boy, what a wacky crazy photo shoot it was compliments of Halainah Grace Qinyang. Norman and Cassandra were very good, nice and quiet and followed directions very well. Halainah on the other hand had her own agenda.

Halainah doesn't interact with other children very often. I try to take Halainah out to have fun at parks so that she can run around and be with other children. The photo shoot made me realize that she needs to get out more often. She wasn't a bad girl. She was just very active and silly. She thought the studio was a playground, the background was a slide and that it was giggle time. It may have been cute to a bystander but was exhausting for Mama and Aunt Deb. Some how, and I don't know how, we were able to get a few cute shots. But I don't think I am returning until Halainah is 10!

So enjoy the pics. of our crazy wacky photo shoot:

This was the very first picture the studio took and one of the best because Halainah sat still for let's see...about 1 second. They are all wearing authentic Chinese attire...straight from our China trip!

Aunt Deb loved this picture. Halainah looks like a real China Doll to me, she almost doesn't look real in the background.

Halainah was way too silly at this point and Cassie jumped on board the silly train a little bit too. I think Norman just wanted to be done with the cousin pictures.

Here she was throwing herself down on her belly...she thought she was so funny.

Getting ready to use herself as a human bowling ball!

And it's a strike! But a cute picture once its cropped!

Up, down, up, down...she couldn't make up her mind!

Up again...ready to slide!

Caught getting up again after rolling around...but cute pic!

And down the "slide" she goes!
Cousins Cassandra and Halainah...I have no idea how she sat still for this pic. But it was the only one out of a dozen!

I LOVE this pic. of Cassie and Norman. So stinkin cute!

Aghhh...the love of a brother and sister!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


How great is this? Ni Hao Kai-Lan is coming out with a mini movie for the first time. And of course it's about a trip to China. I think this will be perfect to explain to Halainah about her mei mei in china and how we will go on a trip to China to bring her home. Halainah absolutely loves Ni Hao Kai-Lan. She has been watching it for a few months now. We have the Noggin channel so I make sure that I put it on for her at 10 am every morning. But no fear, if we miss it at that time it comes on again at 6 pm. If she is in another room and the theme song comes on she comes running. The problem is that I know the song by heart and it tends to get stuck in my head when I am trying to go to sleep. She has a bunch of favorite shows on Noggin like: Oswald, Franklin, Backyardigans, and Toot & Puddle. But her reaction is completely different with Ni Hao Kai-Lan. Tony and I laugh hysterical when it comes on. Halainah crawls onto the couch, squeezes into one corner and starts to clap, laugh and look at us and point to the TV. We have fun with her and repeat the Chinese words that are taught on each episode.

Ni Hao Kai-Lan first aired on February 7, 2008 but was supposed to start back in October 2007. That was only 6 months after we started Halainah's adoption. So Tony and I at that time took the show almost as a sign. There were a million signs but Ni Hao Kai-Lan holds a special place in our hearts because it was created around the same time as Halainah's journey. Halainah is a little young for it now as it is geared towards pre-schoolers ages 2- 5. But that means she has many years to enjoy it. I hope the show continues to stick around and grows as popular as Dora the Explorer.

Anyway, on July 14, 2009 Ni Hao Kai-Lan: Kai-Lan's Great Trip to China will be released. I am so excited because I know Halainah is going to go nuts for it. I'll try to capture some pics when she watches it. I have pre-ordered the movie already.

Here's a little review just in case some of you want to pre-order it as well:

The following content was provided by the publisher.

Join Kai-Lan and her friends Rintoo, Tolee and Ho Ho on their exciting trip to China! In the double-length, feature episode Kai-lan and her friends travel to visit her aunt and a baby panda in China, and are amazed by all the things they see along the way! The DVD includes 2 additional episodes, plus a "Kai-Lan Goes To China" game.

Halainah and I have a very exciting day planned tomorrow and we have to get up early. I hope to capture some great pics. to share.

Here are a few pics. of Halainah in her Father's Day outfit.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


My Daddy Is The Greatest

My daddy is the greatest;
The best dad there ever was.
He always brings me lots of joy;
He’s my very own Santa Claus.
My daddy can do anything;
He’s smart as smart can be.
I love to walk and hold his hand
To show he belongs to me.
I love my daddy!

By Karl Fuchs

I love you Dada so very much. Thank you for finding me on the other side of the world! I thank God for you every day!

Your little Girl Forever,
Halainah Grace Qinyang

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


First of all, this is way too weird for me. I never write a post at 3:00 in the afternoon. My posts are usually done at midnight when my two kids are two kids being Halainah and Daddy. Sorry Tony but you always say that you are a 'Toys R Us' kid and never want to change that! Ahhhhh...keeps me young so can't complain.

Anywho, last week Tony asked me to pick up some Cherry Italian Ices at the supermarket. So I brought home 2 boxes of Marino's Italian Ices...they were on sale. So he opens up a container and starts to dig in. While shoveling it in and feeding a couple of scoops to Halainah, he starts complaining. He said he keeps getting little plastic pieces in his mouth. So I took a new one from the same box and he was right. So I e-mailed Marino's that evening not expecting a response. I was very surprised to get a phone call the very next morning from a really nice man asking me to explain the whole situation. At the end of our conversation he told me that he wanted to send someone to our home to pick up the box of Italian ices that are in question and bring some new ones. I was very surprised on how kind this man was.

So this morning I received a phone call letting me know that they were sending a man out today and that he would be at my house in 2 hours. The Marino's Italian Ice guy pulled up to the front of my house, opens up the back of his truck and opens up a box that was full of dry ice. He pulls out 5 huge boxes of Italian Ices...I think there are 16 ices in each box. So I answered the door, he hands me all of the free ices and takes the "bad" box. He was also so very nice...just really kind. Halainah was flirting like she always does because she likes men. (sometimes I wonder if she likes men so much because she wasn't used to seeing them for 14 months of her life...who knows.) Anyway, the box in question is going to be sent to their lab for some extensive testing and they will get back to us with any and all information. So while the Marino's man was leaving Halainah started crying because he was taking "her" box of ices even though he gave us like a bazillion more...too funny.

Marino's surpassed my expectations. I wasn't even expecting an e-mail back...never mind a personal delivery of Italian ices to my home. Now comes the hard part...finding enough space in my freezer to house all of the freebies. Alright, so who's coming to my house for some Italian ices? I have Cherry, Watermelon, Lemon and Rainbow flavors. Oh yeah, 1 more thing. The best part was that the ices even came with the wooden sticks. You know the ones you used to get from the ice cream man when we were young. Well who knows maybe the ice cream man still gives you them. I haven't purchased from an ice cream man in a long time. Hey, I do remember as a kid when you used to buy them from the supermarket they came in the box too. What ever happened to those days?

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Well we had another jammed packed weekend filled with family and truly good times. If you noticed I have added a Motivation For Moms badge on the side of my blog. Well today's message read, "Visit relatives often to show children the value of relationships." This is something that is so very important to me. And Tony and I have had many conversations about the importance of family. As a child, I have numerous happy memories of my Oma. I was very young when she passed away but still, still I have thousands of memories of her. And it's the simple little things that I remember most. Like, going to the car wash. Back than you were able to sit in the car and drive it through. My brother and I loved going there and my Oma would wait to wash her car so that she could take us. I remember sleeping over at her house almost every weekend. I remember sleeping next to her, feeling her warmth on my arms. I remember her making us farina in the morning because it was our favorite. But I simply remember her love for me in the little things she did. I want Halainah to have fond memories of her family that she will talk about until she is old and gray. In order for her to have those memories we have to lay the foundation now.

So basically our weekends have mostly been jammed packed with family gatherings since returning from China. We started our weekend by going to visit Grandma and Grandpa on Friday. Grandpa looks wonderful and sounds wonderful which was such a blessing to see. Tony went for a short walk with him because he wanted to show Tony that he could finally do it on his own without his walker. Halainah loves her Grandpa. For some reason she is very drawn to him. She stands by his legs and holds on to his knees and gazes up at him. There are times when we have to pull Halainah away from him because he is not feeling well. But not Friday. Grandpa was finally able to pick her up and it was pure heaven to witness. By the end of the evening, Halainah was calling grandpa, "pa". It was so very cute. Grandma was laughing at Halainah most of the evening because she is such a goof. She is so expressive now. She walks with an attitude. She is very confidant in herself. And she will sit and have a conversation with you, hands flaring and everything, babbling up a storm. Oh she is such a cutie. When Grandma and I went to change her into her PJ's at the end of the evening, she had one of grandma's silver spoons down her pants. Don't ask...I really don't know.

Saturday was spent at Aunt Bonnie's and Uncle Mario's. Uncle Mario was going through Halainah withdrawal "those were his exact words", so we headed over there for a visit. He told us if we couldn't stay that would be alright just drop off Halainah. Like I have mentioned before Halainah has a very strong bond with her Godparents that started way before they even saw her picture. They had a huge pot of clams prepared and Tony could not resist. Yuck Clams... But they enjoyed them. Aunt Bonnie made me chicken with fresh mint. Let me just say that it was the best chicken I ever lie. Yum...I'm getting hungry just thinking about it. It was a beautiful evening full of laughter because of Halainah and her infectious personality. I get tired just watching her. She is one giant ball of energy and so is Uncle Mario because he played with her for 4 hours straight.

Sunday was full of yard work. You know, since Tony and I were married 10 years before having kids, there are a lot of projects we started and hate now. One being the yard. We have a very high maintenance front yard. The weeds constantly need to be pulled and wild flowers grow everywhere. I am a little sad that we are working on covering all of the flowers up so that they stop growing. But we simply don't have the time anymore. We are looking for a well manicured, landscaped front yard that has great curb appeal. So we will be spending a bunch of weekends putting down landscaping material and mulch and rocks. I want a rock garden. To all of our friends and family who live close, if you want some Cone flowers or Black-Eyed Susans let me know now cause they are all going bye bye very soon. By the end of Sunday, Tony wasn't feeling well. Let's hope that it is nothing serious. Halainah and I got over being sick a week or so ago. I was so sick...103 fever...and my skin actually hurt. I don't want to get sick again.

So I think that's about it for now. Can you believe that I don't have a lot of pics. to share? I usually have a ton. But I do have a few.

On Friday, Halainah and I were outside when I heard dada pull up. So I yelled to Halainah, "Halainah dada's here...hurry up let's go see." Well she took off running towards the front...she was so excited. So enjoy the pics of Halainah running to her dada after a long day without him.

Here she is standing just enjoying some sunshine after about a month of rain.

At this point I yelled to her that Dada was home...she hauled butt!

She rounded the corner and spotted Dada in his car.

And this was her expression. Looks like pure heavenly happiness if you ask me!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Well of course there is a story behind the title of this post. So Jiu Jiu (my brother and Halainah's uncle) had many many nicknames for our precious little China girl while on our trip of a lifetime. Hmmmm...Jiu Jiu, let me know if I missed any: Snowball, Noodle Girl, Chubsy Ubsy, Spicy Girl, Congee Girl and Buddha Belly. How cute is that onesie on the left there. It would have been perfect for Halainah.

Let's just say that Halainah was much larger on Gotcha Day than we had expected. The last measurement we received while still awaiting travel approval weighed her in at 15 pounds. So you can imagine my surprise when we received updated measurements of her on orientation day. They said she weighed 22 pounds. That was a 7 pound weight gain. I had been calling her a little peanut since the day we were matched (well my mother in law gave her that nickname first). Luckily I packed all 12 month clothes and they all fit. Actually they were a little big. Halainah was petite in a small way, you know legs and arms. But let me tell you, she had a belly, a very big belly that Jiu Jiu quickly nicknamed, Buddha Belly.

Here is a picture from Gotcha Day, 5 months ago. Jiu Jiu is holding his niece and showing everyone her Buddha Belly.

So today, Halainah was inspecting her belly for some reason and it made me think of that awesome day 5 months ago. She is getting so big, way too fast. But I think her belly has thinned out a bit. I don't know...I think she still does have that Buddha Belly. She currently weighs in at 23 pounds.

I do have to admit that Halainah is always hungry and always in search of a snack.

Halainah is always fiddling through the pantry. And usually walks into the next room with a box of something. Here she found an entire box of cereal.

And here she is stuffing her face. Let me just say that Jumbo Rice Krispies taste nothing like regular Rice Krispies...I don't even know how she likes them.

Happy and Content with a full belly...a full Buddha Belly that is!