Wednesday, December 30, 2009

HOME . . .

I haven't written in awhile.  That's because WE ARE HOME!!!!  And I've been loving every minute of it!  The thought of going back, is breaking my heart.  It's funny, because when we first got home I thought it would be easier to go back because we all have friends there now and we know what we're going back to.  But I was wrong.  I am having a hard time dealing with the fact that we have to go back.  I'm sure once we get there, I will be fine, but right now, not so much!

We've had a GREAT time at home.  We've been running practically every single day.  And I wouldn't have it any other way.  We've seen a lot of people, and we'll see a lot more before we leave.  I can always sleep on the plane.  After all, it's a 16 hour flight, so I'll have to have something to do, might as well sleep. 

Christmas was great.  The boys got portable DVD players from Santa, and Sarah Beth got a Dora big wheel.  She was a lot of fun at Christmas this year.  A big change from last year when she didn't really know what was going on.  This year, she knew.  She keeps wanting to open presents.  Christmas morning Ryan asked her if she wanted to see what Santa Claus brought her, and she said, "Santa Claus bring me presents!".  So she knew.  And she loves her "bike" as she calls it.  We're not taking it back to China with us because her feet still don't reach the pedals.  (Plus, we don't exactly have room in our suitcases).  But by the time we come home next summer, she should be the perfect height. 

Andrew got a lot of Ben 10 stuff for Christmas, including a backpack, lunchbox, t-shirt, pajamas, and action figures.  Jason got an Origami set, some books, a journal, and some sketch pads and pencils.  They both also got some clothes, and some Legos.  Sarah got 2 tea sets, and she loves them both.  She got a new baby doll with a stroller, which is already packed in the suitcase to take back to China, a Dora doll and Kai-Lan doll.  She also got a lot of Dora coloring books, some clothes, socks and hairbows, and a Dora play set.  Needless to say, my kids are a little spoiled!

Being home for Christmas was GREAT!  I'm so glad we were able to come home.  It was definitely worth the 2 16 hour flights that we'll have to put up with. 

I'll post more after we get home and let you know how everyone did on the flight.  After the scare on Christmas Day, I'm sure security is going to be a lot tighter going back.  But as long as that keeps us safe, I'm okay with that!

Sunday, December 13, 2009


It's hard to believe that we will be home in less than a week.  I am SO excited, and so are the kids.  Heck, I think even Ryan's excited about coming home!  I am SO not looking forward to the 16 hour plane ride that we have ahead of us, but being able to see everyone when we get home will make it all worth it!  The boys only have 4 days of school left.  We are taking them out on Friday since it's a half day. A lot of kids are leaving early.  Some have already left!. I wish we were one of those lucky ones.  But oh well, we'll be home soon enough.

I'm trying to keep busy every day.  I just feel like if I have something going on everyday, then the time will go by faster.  Today I am going to the Underground to finish my Christmas shopping.  Not sure about tomorrow yet.  Wednesday afternoon is Jason's Christmas party, so I'll be up at school in the afternoon because I'm one of the Room Parents.  Thursday I'll be at school all day because Jason has his Drama play in the morning.  Then I can take him off campus for lunch.  He has to be back on campus by 12:30 for his Wax Museum which is the rest of the day.  Andrew's Christmas party is that afternoon.  And since I'm also one of his Room Parents and planned the Christmas Party, I have to be there!  But that's okay, the more I have to do, the better.  And somewhere in there I also need to pack.  I have a lot of stuff to bring home.  But I also want a lot of suitcases because I have a lot of things to bring back with me.  You should see my list of things to bring back.  It won't be 10 suitcases, but it'll probably be at  least 3 or 4. 

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I know I haven't posted much lately.  We've just been really busy, and I haven't been very motivated.  I still need to post pictures from Hong Kong, which I plan to do sometime this week.  (We took about 500 pictures.  Don't worry, I'm not going to post all 500)!   

I've told you how things are very different here.  The crowds are crazy.  The number of people is unbelievable!  Picture the week before Christmas.  At the mall.  Then multiply that times 10.  And that would SO not be an exaggeration!  There are people EVERYWHERE!!!!  We haven't even started our Christmas shopping for the kids yet.  Which means when we come home we'll have to brave Toys R Us and The Mall.  And you know what?  I'm not even sweatin' it.  After the crowds we've been dealing with for the past 4 months, Kentucky is going to seem barren!  And I will enjoy every minute of it!

But the biggest challenge has been the bathrooms.  The bathrooms here are gross.  And most of them don't have seats.  That's right, I said THEY DON'T HAVE SEATS!!  That means, you are supposed to stand over a hole, hold on to the wall, and pray that you don't pee on your leg.  (Nice visual huh)?!?!  And forget about toilet paper.  If you don't bring it with you, you're SOL.  Lucky for me, I've learned to hold it, believe it or not, so I've only had to use one of those toilets 1 time.  Every other time I've held out until I found a "real" bathroom.  And I carry Kleenex and wipes with me everywhere I go.  (If there's no toilet paper, do you really think there's going to be a sink)?!  Sometimes you have to pay to use the bathroom.  That's right, I said PAY!  It's only 1RMB which is like 15 cents US.  But still.  To have to pay to use the bathroom?  So not fun!

Oh, the joys of living abroad!  But we're learning so much right?  And we're experiencing new things, right?  And we're meeting new people, right?  So what if you have to pee in a hole!

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Okay, so I told you about my Mom last month on HER birthday.  Now let me tell you about my Dad, on HIS birthday.  Happy Birthday Dad!

My dad was the dad that all of my friends loved when I was growing up.  He's funny, fun to be around, always in a good mood, (at least he puts up a good front), and just an all around good guy!  He makes me laugh, he makes me cry, he listens to me, he talks to me, he understands me, he makes me feel like I'm the best daughter in the whole wide world.

When I was in High School we used to go on retreats every year.  Your parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, anyone who wanted to, could write you a letter.  And then you would get them delivered to you during the retreat to read while you were gone.  So let me tell you about the letter I received from my Dad during Freshman Retreat.  I still remember it all these years later.

He starts by telling me that he *really* wanted a boy, and he just knew that I was going to be that boy.  So my Mom was in labor, and he waited out in the waiting room.  (At least that's the story I'm telling.  His friend told him to go ahead and leave and come to a cookout, because there was no way they were going to wake Mom up to have me.  I wouldn't be born until the next day.  Guess what?  He was right)!  Anyway, he's waiting for me to be born, just knowing that I am going to be a boy.  I guess you've figured out by now that he was wrong!  The nurses come out to tell him that I'm a girl.  And he calls HIS Mom.  (Who, by the way, was the GREATEST Grandma that ever lived)!  So he calls Grandma to tell her that I'm a girl, and Grandma tells him, "Don't sound so disappointed!"

By this time in the letter, I'm felling like I should apologize for being a girl.  And I'm crying.  But then he goes on to tell me that as soon as he saw me he knew I was a gift from God and that I was the best little girl ever made.  And that he thanks God for me everyday and that he's lucky to have me for a daughter.  (He's good, don't ya think)?

I think God really knew what he was doing when he gave me him for a Dad.  I remember when I was growing up we were studying about adoptions in school.  And I asked my Mom if I was adopted.  She said, "Michelle, as much as you are like your Dad and your Grandma, do you really think you could be adopted?!"  And she was right.  My Dad and I are a lot alike.  I remember being with a friend a few years ago and talking about my freckles.  I said of all the things I could have gotten from him, why did it have to be the freckles?!  And she said, "oh, you definitely go a lot more than the freckles from your Dad."  And I took that as a compliment.  She's right.  I like to think there are a lot of things I got from him.  And for those things, I am very proud.

Thanks Dad, for helping to be the person that I am today.  Thanks for teaching me love and compassion.  Thanks for teaching me how to enjoy myself and have a good time.  Thanks for teaching me to enjoy being around other people.  Thanks for letting me know that you will always love me no matter what.

I love you with all my heart!

Your *FAVORITE* daughter!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Okay, so I told you we went to Hong Kong for Thanksgiving weekend.  (I will post pictures later).  We all decided to ride Space Mountain.  And for those of you that really know me, you know that's a big accomplishment!  I HATE roller coasters.  But you can't go to Disney, and not ride Space Mountain.  So I rode with Andrew, and Ryan rode with Jason.  Andrew wanted to go first, because he didn't want to hear them talking about it when they got off.  (He's a chicken like his Mommy)!  They have this thing on the rides where you can "swap."  Andrew and I got on first, and Jason and Ryan waited with Sarah.  Then, as soon as we got off, they got to get on, and we waited with Sarah.  It worked out great.  So we got off and we were standing there with Sarah waiting for Ryan and Jason.  And Sarah looked at me and said, "Mommy, was it Awesome??!?!" 

Priceless!  That's what happens when you have two older brothers!