Sunday, 17 February 2013

Valentine's Day- Love it or Loath it

Rykauna somehow bribed her two youngest sibs into allowing her to do a Valentine's Day photo shoot.  I think the big pink lollipop may have a lot to do with their cooperation modelling for her :)  Anyway, in honour of heart day, here are a few of the pics Rykauna took.

Steph and I celebrated V-day a week early.  He surprised me with  roses and a dinner out.  My mother-in -law watched the kids while we enjoyed some time together. Thanks, Mom!

On the actual day, February 14th, we had a nice time with the kids.  I had to leave after  school for a short appt with Hudson.  Steph stayed home with the other three kids.  I came home a half hour later to Steph vacuuming our home with a rag hanging out of his jeans pocket.  He had just finished cleaning one of our bathrooms!  What a blessed woman I am.  I definitely have found my true valentine...LOVE HIM so much!  Our dinner consisted of fajitas on heart shaped tortillas and red velvet cake for dessert.  The kids are so sweet about giving us little valentines, making heart shaped cookies and swirling caramel sauce into a heart shape over ice cream. For our part, a little gift each for the kids and they were all smiles.

As much as I love Valentine's Day.  I was keenly reminded that not everyone looks forward to this day though.  In fact, I think it is safe to say, many people genuinely dread it.  One of my dear, single friends texted me on Feb 14th and said, "Happy Single Awareness Day!" I love her sense of humour, but I also got the message.  This day can be downright tough on single people.  So, if you are a praying person, please pray for your single friends next Valentine's Day.  Some of them feel "Single Awareness Day" more keenly than others.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Question period...Toddler Style

Right now we are in the toddler questioning phase.  Yup. Nearly every parent can attest to the phase where their child asks why after almost every statement.  Li Lin is no exception to this.  She also asks random questions out of the blue.  Here is a sample of what we have been dealing with.

1.  Why do you love me? (aww...)
2.   Do monsters use toilet paper?
3.   Why can't I drive the van?
4.   Why can't Logan (our 11 year old) drive and then Dad can sit beside me?
5.   Why can't I eat chocolates for breakfast?
6.   Why can't you buy me these? (red stilletoes)
7.   Why can't we decorate the Christmas tree again today?  (in Feb!)
8.   Can I decorate the house today?
9.   Why does daddy snore?
10.  Why can't I turn five on my birthday instead of four?
Sorry I tried flipping this on two different programs and though it saved upright, it came up flipped here!

And her most common question of all.... drum roll please.
"When is my birthday coming?"  She has been asking this question at least bi-weekly ever since she could speak English.  Thankfully it is coming up next month... can't wait to see her on that day.  The ceilings won't be high enough!

Chinese New Year

Saturday was Chinese New Year's Eve.  Our good friends, Allan and Lucy invited us, along with others to their place to make traditional Chinese dumplings then celebrate with them.  It was great fun learning the art of dumpling making.  Celebrating our first Chinese New Year with Li Lin was also really special.  A week earlier, Rykauna and I took Li Lin shopping at a local Chinese mall and purchased her a new CNY dress.  I really liked the red ones, but Li Lin had her heart set on the little pink one in the pictures.  Unfortunately, the snaps on the dress did not even last the night, so it seems it won't be worn much :( 

Rolling out the dough balls into round discs
Adding the filling
Dumplings ready for the pot!

 The traditional Chinese New Year dress.  Love it!
Both of us in our Chinese outfits

The children love the tradition of receiving red envelopes with money or chocolate money inside for Chinese New Year.   Who wouldn't?!

A week before lunar New Year I had gone into our neighbourhood Chinese grocery store to purchase some red envelopes for some of my Sunday School children.  As I was standing beside the envelope table and trying to pick the prettiest envelopes I noticed an Asian woman kind of watching me.  I noticed she was sort of staring at me, but did not mind at all, knowing it is not everyday a white woman buys red envelopes for Chinese New Year.  I figured she was just a little curious.  I picked up a package, and was just about to walk to the cash with it when she said to me.  "You don't want those. Take these instead."

I looked up at her a little surprised.
Then she said, "The ones in your hand say, 'Congratulations on opening up your new business'.  You want these ones that say 'Best wishes in the New Year'."  LOL!

I thanked her for her kindness and headed to the cash. I would have been totally embarrassed giving these out to kids whose parents read and speak mandarin.  I guess it would have made for a good laugh.  Turns out, my teaching partner had already purchased some, so we didn't need the ones I bought in the end anyway. 

Lesson learned though, if I can't read it, I won't buy it next time.