Friday, January 10, 2014

Happy 2nd Birthday Little H

OH MY GOODNESS, my little baby is now 2 years old.  I can't believe that she is two.  She is becoming her own little person and it's so much fun to watch but sad at the same time.  She loves to play with girly things but then also loves to play with whatever her brothers play.  It's pretty amazing because since she was born the boys have also changed how they play.  They still play with their toys and cars, and trains but they also have gotten more thoughtful about playing make believes and different games that incorporate Little H.
She talked and opened both presents from her grandmas while Skyping with them.  It was SO cute because Little H would happily show them what she got and then move on to the next item in their gift bag.  It was SO cute!  

We just had a small birthday party for Little H.  2 years old is a big deal but it's hard because she doesn't have many close little friends her age and so we just invited who we consider to be our family here in Taiwan.  We enjoyed pizza, salad, kool-aid and cake that Kris made for Little H.  Kris did an amazing job and I am just in awe of her cake decorating talent.  I don't think any of Little H's other cakes will be topped by this cake (unless Kris decides to make another cake for her!) because I am not that talented with my cake decorations.
This year for her birthday Little H got a bunch of girly stuff, she got "make up" from her brother, jewelry, and all sorts of fun stuff.  It's definitely interesting having a girl around.  Happy birthday my sweet Little H!  I love you and am so happy that you are in our lives!
 Being very precise about how to put on her pretend make up! 
 Her brothers of course had to try on her stuff too!  They were so proud that they got to try everything! We just laughed! 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Pre-birthday play date and a Coldstone date with mommy

I invited two of Little H's friends to go play at Big City with her in honor of her birthday.  She had a blast playing with everyone.  We also got to enjoy lunch with her friends.  
After lunch we all separated - saying our goodbyes.  But I wanted to do something special with Little H just mommy and her.  So we went to Coldstone to share a ice cream creation.  They don't do anything special for birthdays but they were willing to give me a Christmas candle and then sang to her.  She was so happy and proud of the fact that people sang to her.  She also enjoyed her first big girl ice cream.  I think this might be a wonderful birthday tradition that I might have to do with each kid.  Just some mommy and them time. 
 Enjoying EVERY SINGLE bite! 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Little M's class chapel performance

Each class gets the opportunity to invite their parents, and relatives to watch them perform some songs and actions for the whole school and family members.  Today was Little M's class performance.  Little M has only been attending school for 1/2 a year and is still just in the process of learning the language.  So in the beginning of the year he would cry but be happy to be at school.  I think as he keeps attending school his language will improve and his people skills will just come out in both Chinese and English.  The teachers tell me that he communicates with his eyes and his whole body, everyone knows what he is feeling - if he is sad or happy.  I wasn't expecting much from Little M just because I figured that he would get stage fright and a little overwhelmed with being on stage with everyone.  

But he totally shocked me.  When he knew the words to the songs he would sing out and would try to follow along with the motions.  It was so adorable and I was so proud of him.  He was so excited that we were there to see him sing and perform.  (The teachers and I told him that if he didn't do the motions or the songs that we as parents wouldn't be able to attend and that was the incentive he needed to listen to his teachers and try his best! Yes that was mean to say but they needed something to work with and we were willing to say that to him!) 

I'm so proud of him! 
 Some of his little classmates.  They are all so cute! (They are the littlest class so it's always interesting to see what kids will do during these types of performances.)
 The principal brought Little H to sit with her brother during the performance.  Little N was so happy and so was Little H.  Little N was happy because he got to snuggle and be with his sister and Little H was happy because she was a big girl!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A new adventure - getting the etc strip

Taiwan has given up on having people collect tolls on the toll roads and now everyone is required to have the ETC strip and an e-tag so that when you travel on toll roads you will get money taken off your e-tag for the tolls.  I have no clue how to do those things and we (John and I) have basically just put it off until the last minute but with my mom coming soon and us needing to take the toll roads up to get her, I knew that we would need to get it done. Thankfully one of my friends volunteered to go to one of the rest areas to help me out.  The signing up wasn't very difficult a guy asked me some questions and then thankfully filled out the application.  Then my friend helped me figure out where they would place the sensor and then told me that all we had to do was go to a convienence store to put money in our account and there we could get the e-tag so that we would be able to easily check how much money was in our account.   

After my friend helped me, she had an issue so she asked for us to wait for her.  So little H and I went outside to play and walk around, she enjoyed trying to be a big girl with the machines.  I was getting a little sad because my little girl is no longer a baby and getting to be such a big girl!  I'm not ready for her to be big.   

Sunday, January 5, 2014

January Memory Verse 2014

John and I have talked about memorizing scripture with our kids.  I started two years ago by having each kid have a memory verse for the year.  We talked about the verse and read it occasionally as a family but they didn't really have it memorized.  But I prayed through their memory verse every time I read their memory verse on the blog.  

Last year I picked out memory verses for the year for the kids and again we talked about them but the kids never really memorized.  I decided that I would pray their verses monthly. When the kids started school I started writing memory verses on the whiteboard that I would pray through and say to the kids.  We never really had any of the memory verses or the verses that I wrote on the whiteboard memorized as a family, which was something that really frustrated both John and I because we want the kids to memorize scripture.  We want as a family to be memorizing scripture and because we never really had a plan or idea of what we were going to do it never really happened.

This year on New Years Eve, I decided that I wanted to have 12 memory verses for each month on top of a family memory verse for the year.  I decided to incorporate the kids verse for the year into the 12 memory verses, that way I knew that the kids would at least hear me read their memory verse on their birthday month and memorize them.  I wanted to take baby steps and every day or even once a week have the kids repeat after me or tell me the scripture verse for that month!  John and I would love to attempt to memorize a scripture verse a week but I think we will be doing good if we have 12 verses memorized! Baby steps, I tell myself, baby steps.  My prayer is that we as a family would have hidden in our hearts 12 scripture verses by the end of 2014.  

For the month of January, which is also Little H's birthday month we have her memory verse and the verse that I will be praying over her for the year, 1 John 4:19 - We love because He first loved us. 
Are you memorizing scripture this year?  Are you memorizing scripture with your kids?  What are you doing and how are you doing it? (I would love all the tips I can get!) 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Fun and Games

Going outside especially at night is always an interesting time.  We have fun going outside.  (Minus the bugs) Here is a little gazebo like area.  and I just liked how the blue lights and the wood looked together.  It was so pretty.  After going outside with the kids we decided to walk up the stairs to our apartment (we live on the 13th floor) which was so many steps and we were all exhausted after we did.  After we did that and rested we decided to teach the kids Skip bo junior.  They did such a good job and they had so much fun.  

Friday, January 3, 2014

Playing outside

I was extremely nice to my kids after school today.  I grabbed them a snack and a drink and then right after school we headed outside to play.  We also had one of their little friends over so running and playing was a must.  All the kids had a blast and then later on proceeded to pick flower for me and then arranged them for me so I could take a picture.  It was so sweet and cute! 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

My sweet kiddos

The kids all wanted me to take their pictures.  Little N wanted to lay on the bed, praying and of course all the other kids wanted to do the same thing.  I love the picture of Little H because it looks like she is just hugging her babies but she's actually praying for her babies.  It was the sweetest moment.  My kids I absolutely adore especially when they give me beautiful flower.  I have been trying to figure out the zone system (photography) so I tried to practice what I had learned on that flower.  It finally turned out the way I wanted it to with out me having to do a lot in post processing!  I was so excited. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

All swaddled up

My kids have great imaginations.  Because we have been talking about swaddling baby Jesus and placing him in a manger the kids were playing pretend and decided to be swaddled all like baby Jesus.  This picture is them all swaddled like baby Jesus in a manger.  

Happy New Year 2014

Happy New Year!  2013 was a rough year to keep current on my blog.  My goal for 2014 is to have more regular posts and keep more current with my blog.

I sat down on New Year's Eve after our friend had left and wrote down all the things that I wanted to do in 2014.  I'm a list writer, don't believe me ask my husband.  (When we go on a trip, I have a notebook and write down everything we need and then check it off as it's packed! I'm sure John laughs at me!)

I wrote down things I have to get done for work and my other responsibilities.  Then I wrote down things that John and I have talked about implementing in our family life.  In December for the last two years I have done activities with the kids every day leading up to Christmas.  I love doing it and realized that I need to do it throughout the year also. It's about creating special memories with my children and also teaching them about certain things that might not be explained unless we talk about them. So I picked out holidays or special events and wrote them down as things to do.

The other thing that John and I have talked about was memorizing scripture.  Now in 2013 I wrote down bible verses that I left for up on my whiteboard for me to read and just pray over each month (I started in October) as I saw the white board and the scripture verse.  This year I am better prepared because I wrote down the bible verses I would like us to look at each month, I selected the bible verses for my kids this year and I also found a bible verse for us for the year.  I'm very excited because this has been something that John and I have been talking about and I'm hoping that I can follow through with this.

Then I looked at the things I do for fun and realized that I also needed to write goals and things that I want to do for that.  My love for photography has grown and I'm pretty sure that I need to write a blog post about that just by itself.  This year I will be working through a book called The Visual Toolbox by David duChemin, which I hope will grow and stretch me alot.  I would love to start a photography business but just don't feel like I have my act together to start charging for my photography.  I'm hoping to find my voice and to get a better handle on taking pictures so that if I ever feel comfortable taking pictures and charging people for it...I can do so without fear.

The other thing I want to do is get better at posting on my blog.  I want to write about my experiences in Taiwan (it's just overwhelming and I'm just not certain what I should share and talk about!) and I want to just be better at blogging.  This blog is kind of an online diary and a photo album of my kids life that I want to have.  I want them to have the explanations of what we did and where we went along with the pictures.

The last thing that I want to do and I say it every year but I'm SO horrible at it...I want to be better at corresponding with others.  I want to get back in the habit of making cards and then instead of holding on to them I want to send them off to people.  I want to write people and remember to mail off my letter instead of just letting them sit around doing nothing.

I have a couple of questions for you my readers - What are some things about Taiwan that you want to know about? What would you like to see more of on this blog? Keep looking back on the blog because I'm trying to catch up on 2013 but I also want to move forward with 2014.  Happy New Year!   I leave this post on one final note and that is our family verses for the  year.
I Thessalonians 5:16-18 -  Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Welcome to our blog! We try to keep this current for family and friends. We moved to Taiwan in February 2011 and are trying to keep in contact with loved ones through this blog. We love comments and will respond back if you have questions or comments!! Thanks for checking us out!!

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