Saturday, September 27, 2008

Keep her in your prayers

Theresa (Jin Ha), "our" little girl will soon be 10! We have been trying to adopt her since 2005 and pray that God opens the doors matter what God has in store for her, we will always love her and want what is best for her!

Kahee/Amy, Kaitlyn, and Theresa "stuffing their faces" at Outback in Korea

My girl is more smiles than anything and LOVES, LOVES, LOVES to have fun! She can make the simplest, silliest things fun.

God blessed us with the opportunity to meet her Biological siblings Melanie/SongHa, Nam I/Shawn, and her bio-cousin in May...they have SO much fun together and Kaitlyn loves SongHa and Nam I

Please keep Theresa, Melanie, and Shawn in your prayers-they all need to know they are loved and to have their basic needs met. Melanie and Shawn live with Halmonie; I met Halmonie in July and she is an awesome woman-I love her!

a few pictures to update you

Mac cooking jae yuk bokem (spicy pork), Chicken and beef Galbi (dak galbi and galbi) for my sister and her family...for someone who does not like Asian food, he sure can cook it! lol

Mahkayla and Kaitlyn with my sister, Theresa (ok...Tess)
Kaitlyn showing "no fear" ha ha-as long as the vest or "arm floaties" are in place

Kaitlyn practicing "belly up" or swimming on her back as Aunt Tess tells her how...

Mahkayla modeling one of Kaitlyn's Hanboks..."OH aunt Tammy, now we are REAL princesses!" wish I could have caught the look on her face when she saw them!!

Kaitlyn loved meeting her cousin who is 2 years younger-and just way too smart for any 3 year old!
Kaitlyn trying to show Mahkayla how to do "woodcock" bubbles in the tub... funny how Kaitlyn picked up on doing it but can't seem to get anyone else to pick up on the ability...she uses the hand soap in public restrooms to do the same! lol Thanks "MoMo Bu" for teaching her this unique art!

Well, it seems Miss Kaitlyn is enjoying attending school-I am so thankful! She and I both worried about the difference between Korean and American school, and she says she likes American school better-she asks "if Theresa comes to live with us will she like American school better too?" I don't know if she will ever realize that our dream for Theresa may never materialze...I must trust that God will provide for the little girl we call Theresa, that He will make sure her needs are met, that she always remembers how much we love her and that one day she will have a family-if not ours- that will love her even half as much as we do!

My sister and part of her family came to visit us early in September-everyone seemed to enjoy the swimming pool-which was officially "closed" today due to the weather showing more signs of winter than summer...Kaitlyn hates that it is "closed" (drained, covered, etc) but prays that it means snow is soon to follow...

Still praying that a quick return to Korea is in our future, but my father must first make it through the surgery coming up the mid to end of October...if I would get the call to go pick up Theresa, I would leave the meantime-we are enjoying the time with my father and step-mother and at least Kaitlyn is looking forward to a winter in Virgina (if it is like Christmas 2006 we won't see any snow until after January and then it will be COLD for ages...hoping for one snow for Kaitlyn and a mild/warmer than usual winter for Mac and I!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Where the heck does time go??!!

Looking at this blog, I realize I am MONTHS behind.
So much has happened-
A) The adoption for Theresa "fell through" but we were able to help her connect to her bio-paternal grandmother and will do our best to facilitate visits while she lives in the orphanage...the grandmother financially cannot take Theresa out of the Orphanage as she is raising 2 of Theresa's bio siblings (high schoolers!) as well as 2 cousins
B) My father became ill-sudden onset of neuro disorder that is causing the loss of the use of his legs as well as more heart problems, so Katie and I had to leave Korea much earlier than planned
C) We arrived in San Antonio, Tx on 21 July, spent 4 days in Galveston, TX during a hurricane (had a blast!)
D) enroute to Lousiana my husband got a job offer in DC...not Korea where we wanted, but also got us out of Lousiana-and we managed to move ourselves in less than 2 weeks!
E) We moved to Virginia, but enroute I was offered 2 jobs in Korea-due to my father's ill health I felt it best to turn them down and pray they will again be offered next year!!
Ok...that is a speedy update, and hope to do a better one with pictures
Well... happy September!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

June 1st took us to Busan (the KTX station is shown below) in preparation of a ferry ride to "Dae Ma Do" for the Koreans or "Tsushima Island" for the Japanese. We wished we had spent a few days, but our reason for going initially was not a vacation or site seeing, but a cheap way to renew our Korean Visas! Tsushima is a beautiful island with tons of history for Korea and Japan as well as Russia (the Russians invaded Japan and uses Tsushima for a stopping point). I have vowed to return and spend a few days!

Katie enjoying the flower and water garden outside the KTX-Busan station. The had older people singing traditional Korean songs and younger ones singing more modern songs-until 3 AM (was not so "cool" when we could not sleep as our hotel did NOT have A/C and we needed the windows open!).

Unfortunately this was NOT our ferry to DaeMa Do or Tsushima Island, but now that I know it is only 60 dollars more it will be the next time! lol

Kaitlyn loved the ferry for the first hour, but as the seas became rough-so did her stomach...she is not so sure we will make the trip again! lol

It is near the end of June and we are still in Korea. I am not sure if I am happy or sad we are here-today (here in Korea and tomorrow in "America") is Shy's 25th birthday; Thankfully Daddy drove the 7 hours to go see her and spend the weekend with her (he has really began showing the older kids he cares-not sure why but definitely can't complain!). Can't believe Shy is 25-where did the time go? (Altough, due to her mental condition she will always be "13" or so...).

Kaitlyn is complaining of "being sick mamma, maybe we should go see the doctor?!" but she is not having any problems eating popscicles, ice cream or Hershey's kisses-or even a few mini-reeses cups! She does have the snottiest nose I have seen in ages and is running a low-grade fever so we are medicating with Dimetapp and Children's Tylenol...

We are currently house and pet-sitting for a school teacher-the poor little dog is lost without her "real" mamma, but is finally beginning to come around-she only growls when she sees or hears us! lol She is finally eating without being bribed and runs to the door to go out when she sees or hears a plasitc bag rustling (poopy bags per Kaitlyn).

The weather has been very co-operative for being Monsoon Season-it rained last night and that is the first rain in a week! The temps are running 70's to 80's and we have only used the AC one night in the bedroom (not that I would not prefer it if I was not worried about the bills! lol). Yesterday was cloudy and today is as well, but for 3 days before that it was sunny and very warm.

Kaitlyn is finally speaking Korean-and lots of it! We had a parent-teacher conference at her school and the teacher says "she volunteers now to go to the front of the class and speak Korean and does a good job of it". She is also realizing the limits of my Korean vocabulary and occasionally spits of something that does not sound anywhere near a real word and then says "hmmm, can YOU speak Korean? No? Why not! Do you mean I will have to teach YOU?!" She is a smarty pants occasionally, but for the most part is just too good-and she is beginning to love her "native" language and people. She is aclimating to the customs of the Koreans and now knows what is expected of her by the Korean population. Although I am pleased beyond measure thaty she is speaking Korean it is posing a slight problem...she understands when people now say "mahnee ipoyo" or something similar-meaning "she is beautiful" and she now asks "mamma, do you think I am beautiful? Do they think I am the most beautiful?" We are daily having the conversation of "you cannot be beautiful on the outside if you are not FIRST beautiful n the inside!

LOL, I am appalled at the price of "ice cream" in Korea- it is up to 700 won for one on a stick...about 65 cents of late...but from 2001 to 2007 it was only 500 won (about 40 to 50 cents depending on the won rate) so this increase this year is about a 25% increase! Katie of course thinks it is cheap (and she is oh, so correct) so will do just about anything to earn the money to go get an ice cream; you also have to realize that Korean ice creams are not as sugary (ok, some are) as American ones so she is getting fruit (most are fruit based!) with a little sugar or milk for 65 cents per day...I know it adds up, but we usually spend the "loose change" laying around and don't miss it too much.
The morning of the 19th brought a sad day to Korea and to the local Army base and the H____________ orphanage! Tracey Momo and Jon Momobu flew to Hawaii for thier next duty station. Tracey and Jon were active in the local community and Tracey was VERY active in the Korean community near the orphanage-teaching English to underprivledged kids for free (while others only do it for 30 to 50 dollars an hour!), taking "goodies to the orphanage children (fruits, clothing, even going and cooking dinners for the 50 kids there!). Tracey and Jon have 2 boys- Ian who is 7 (bio son) and Caden who was Kaitlyn's "mat mate" at the orphanage. One of the things that helped us get thru the "good-byes" was in knowing that this family is a wonderful family and that we will keep in touch with Katies's "soul mate"-Jon will be a totally awesome example of a father and husband for Caden, so if it is the way God intends- Katie will have a wonderful husband down the road! The other "happy" thought? Caden became a US Citizen upon landing in Hawaii and clearing immigration!!! This family went thru hell and back to complete their adoption of Caden and then the US Gov't side waited until only 6 days before take-off to grant the immigration Visa...but Thanks to tons of prayer-God is bigger and He got things done-the final result? A happy, healthy family and one very happy, new US Citizen!!
Katie is asking for ice cream, so perhaps a short walk is in order...hey! we get exercise and ice cream...can't complain TOO much! lol

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Birthday photos

The photo below was taken by Tracey MOMO and shows a few of the children adopted from the same "babies home" as Kaitlyn. They are called the "H___________ Nomads" as they will inevitably move from place to place-curtesy of the US Military!

Pak, Jin Ha aka Theresa, and her recently discovered bio-siblings Pak, Song Ha, Pak Nam I, and her "Komo" or aunt (although I think it is really a cousin) Ms. Chae (15 years old~). Taken at the Dragon Hill Lodge, Yongsan Korea
Song Hoon, a 2.5 year old gorgeous boy who lives at the Babies home- he has a father who DEARLY loves him but cannot care for him, his 3 other brothers and work, so the youngest has to live at the babies home. Please keep this little guy in your prayers- he was a "premie" and is showing some signs of a serious medical condition; also pray for the director and the nurse assigned to the "home" that they make wise decisions on his behalf!
One of my favorite pictures; Kaitlyn and SaeHee-love and life can't get much better than this!
Daddy tying of the "bow" of Kaitlyn's "Hanbok"

Kaitlyn demonstrating the "typical pose" for photos- the "Peace" sign in hopes that one day North and South Korea will be united; I pray that there will be peace on the side of the South and that the younger generation does not forget what the older ones have taught them!

Below you will see two of the awesome decorations Rosita Imo made for the party- ALL Koreans who saw them asked for them, but they are "safely" home and I will use them to decorate her room or figure out a way to save them for her 16th Party!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Where does time go?!

Where does time go? How do we get so "busy" that we forget the day of the week, the date, or even what we did yesterday? I don't know, but I see I must have been in a time-warped fog for a while now as I have not updated this page in ages!
20 April brought Daddy to Korea to check on jobs as well as to celebrate Kaitlyn's 5th birhday in the Country she is learning to love. We celebrated her birthday a few days late in order to allow the majority of her friends to attend; the children still residing in the Orphanage were not able to attend-much to our dismay- as they had other plans in place per the Seoul Welfare Society.
The characters and decorations were made by "Miss Rosita" a wonderful friend and totally awesome mommy to one of the little girls adopted from the same orphanage as Kaitlyn-she must have spent hours on them (as Kaitlyn says "too many to count, mama!").
Daddy brought the "wrong" hanbok for her birthday celebration so we purchased another one and per daddy "Nothing is too good for our princess, after all- she will only be 5 once!" And of course next year it will be "she will only be 6 once", etc!! Her daddy sure does love her-sometimes "too much"!
We had fun with friends and friends who are more like family than some of our own family-but that is the life of "nomadic" peoples.
Please enjoy the photos from April, 2008.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Pics that would not add...

Three of Kaitlyn's friends from the "baby home"
The "famous" Mini Me...future husband?
Three of our former KATUSA friends
Do you think I ate enough Kimchi???

"Uncle Dan" playing cards with the girls
What we had hoped our "family" would be by now- but God had/has other plans. Dennis has a Korean family, Theresa is in limbo, and of course Kaitlyn is stuck with me!
Too much Easter! Sleeping beauties.
Kaitlyn in her "Exercise uniform" for school-they will do ballet, taekwondo, and other fun things on the days they are required to wear this uniform.

Well, seems I will have to do another post to add more photos- but time is out and I must pick up two soon to be 5 year olds!!

Trying to catch up!

Together again!! Kaitlyn and Caden Kaitlyn trying to Hugs Caden into saying "I will marry you!"
Uh oh! We have a slight problem- Kaitlyn is taking up RIGHT WHERE SHE LEFT OFF in Oct 06!!
Baek Oppa (say the "AE" with a short "E" sound) He no longer has a "boyish" look but an "Ajushi"!
Theresa and Kaitlyn enjoying one of their favorite "Chores"!

Today is the 11th of April here in Korea. Yes, I said Korea. Kaitlyn and I have been here since late evening on the 4th of March and we have not sat still for a moment!
I am supposed to be working on a powerpoint presentation, but will take a moment to do a quick update. Since arriving in The Land of the Morning Calm we have spent several days at Hwasong, stayed 3 weeks with "Lilbit Imo", spent 3 weeks with Caden's mom (you will hear more about "Caden" shortly), and not eaten NEARLY the amount of Korean food we would like!

Our first morning here we showed up at the HS SP ED class to let Lilbit Imo know we had arrived-all the while thinking Dan had told her we were coming and when we would arrive. Kaitlyn walked into the room a few minutes before class began and Lilbit stood there looking like "who brought a child into my room?" which quickly turned to "OMG! What are you doing here?"
We were amazed to find that Dan had kept his "promise" and Lilbit had NOT known we were coming and we were successful in suprising her.

Once we left the HS we went to visit a few friends who work for Starbucks Korea and walked into the Starbucks on post to the screams of ___________ (Kaitlyn's Korean name) and "Tammy Ajumma"!!! We had about 15 amazed people starring us down wondering what all the fuss was over and why they were now having to wait to have their coffees made :-). Several of the former and current employees of Starbucks-Korea were instramental in helping Kaitlyn transition from a Korean Children's House (Orphanage) to an American family-nothing says "I love you" better than a "James Frapaccino"! (a specialty at Yongsan Starbucks! It is a Caramel Frapaccino with LAYERS of heavy caramel! You can only get it from one of the girls who knows my husband).
In order to allow us an easy transition back to Korea, we stayed several nights at the hotel and enjoyed all the "hooopla" of the staff at Greenstreet making a fuss over our return and how big Kaitlyn has gotten. We have had several Korean friends state "wish you had adopted me, then I could be speaking Korean as well as Kaitlyn!".

We enjoyed a wonderful Traditional Korean dinner our first weekend here with several of the "Katusa Oppas", or former ROK soldiers assigned to work with my husband. It is amazing that we are able to stay in touch with KATUSA soldiers from as far back as the year 2000! (see pics)

We are still hoping and praying that Theresa's bio-father keeps his promise of showing up at the Family Court and signing the final adoption papers (she turned 9 in Jan), but it is looking less promising each day. We had the luxury of meeting Geon Ha's (He still insists we call him Dennis and find a way to adopt him and take him to America!) new family and had a wonderful weekend with he, Theresa, and Kaitlyn spending time together; Dennis' family insists I have "visitation" and I am NOT going to complain. Kaitlyn is trying to figure out why he now has a Korean family when we initially were the first people in 8 years to want to adopt him and I have explained that we were able to initiate the desire for a family and that God works in ways we don't understand-but now Geon ha has a family who will hopefully love him forever and help him "be the best he can be" (lol, play on the OLD Army logo!!). (See pics).

Kaitlyn was initially taken to Hwasong babies home in June of 2003 with a little boy who was only 10 days older and they were "virtual twins" and seemed inseparable. We thought of adopting both children together, but it was not possible; we left Korea with a sad heart and prayed we would find a way to adopt him or that God would open the doors and hearts in Korea to allow him a family. God always comes through! This little boys name is now Caden, his final adoption decree is days away, and his parents are U.S. Marines (can't complain there- we sure love our Marine!)!!. Kaitlyn and Caden are again nearly inseparable unless his older brother is feeling a little We think it is funny that thier Korean names have the same first initial and that their American names have the same initial sounds. Kaitlyn of course took right up where she left off in Oct of 2006...(see pics) and the "Omma's" at the orphanage are thrilled to see them getting along so well and in knowing they will always stay "connected".

Kaitlyn is planning her marriage to Caden, "Mini Me", and "Baek Oppa"- see pics of each of the "Men" in her life...

Kaitlyn is enjoying her time at the Korean "Kindergarten" Yuchi wan- or as we would call it "pre-school". I am however having to adjust and an trying really hard to NOT PINCH THE HEAD OFF OF ONE LITTLE GIRL! This little girl is "Korean-American" and goes by "SoPee" (guess her American name! lol it is very closely pronounced like the Korean version). "SoPee" has decided that she HATES Kaitlyn's pretty face and yesterday commenced to scratch and pinch in order to again be "the prettiest face in school" (oh yes! her words exactly!!!). Kaitlyn asked me why some people are so mean and I told her I just could not explain it. "Mama, I hate, hate, hate mean people!" I told her at the moment I was "hating a few mean people" also but that God would rather we prayed for them and in the mean time stay way. I also had to explain that Yuchi wan was NOT an orphanage and she must tell the Songsang Nim (Teacher) when "SOPee" or any other child was mean or attempting to hurt her- she says she will try but first today when "SoPee" says in English (she says mean things to Caden and Kaitlyn in English so the teachers don't understand!) "I don't like you and I hate your pretty face" she will respond with "that is ok 'cuz I hate mean people and won't have people like you for a friend!" I hope it has at least enough effect that "SoPee" leaves her alone! One nice thing? I know my daughter is beautiful, but for another child to be jealous only proves it! I am still teaching Kaitlyn that pretty is only pretty if we ACT pretty and are pretty from the inside out!

Well, it has taken me longer than expected- so I hope you enjoy the pics! I tried to add them below, but they "jumped" to the top. It looks like I will have to do another "post" in order to add more pics!
An yong he cas ae yo! (bye!)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Kaitlyn's silliness

My, my, my- how time does fly!

Living in Louisiana you would begin to think I am used to the rain, but I am NOT. Today was cloudy until after lunch, then the rain, lightening, and LOTS of LOUD thunder. Kaitlyn wanted to sit outside in the rain to watch the lightening, but there was no place to sit and stay even remotely dry, so she had to sit inside and watch thru the windows. The dog was another story! Poor old Prince-he ran around the house trying to jump into a bed (any bed but his of course! lol) or jump into our arms/laps, etc.

We are trying to gather items to pack for a trip to Korea-only Kaitlyn and I will be going this trip-in hopes of either completing an adoption that was begun 3 years ago, or to help find Jin Ha a family in Korea...please keep this in your prayers. In the meantime, Kaitlyn is busy memorizing the days of the week and the months so she can figure out when we will be leaving; she can sing the months (a song she learned from "Pooh Bear") but cannot recite them unless she sings. She can also sing the days of the week, but don't distract her and ask which day comes after Tuesday or before She knows PWOC is on Tuesday and Ballet on Wednesday and Church on Sunday, so she gages every other day according to her "known schedule".

We managed to strip all the beds today, only to have Kaitlyn walking around the house and explaining to Prince why he could not climb up onto the "squishies" (fake feather bed toppers) and why "the sheets need to be changed honey". Sometimes she talks to the dog as if she, Kaitlyn, is 80 years old-guess it is a "southern" thing :-)

Miss Katie climbed up into my lap a few nights ago-only to snuggle. She is very affectionate, but lately says she is too old to snuggle, so this surprised me. During her snuggles, she mentioned the "little sister God told her we were going to get"-she insists she and God talk, after all she is a former angel! She has said multiple times that "God told me I was getting a little sister". She has tried this on daddy, only to have his respond with "well, I want a boy, so no sister for you!" Smart little booger pipes up with "Well, God told me a little sister and you want a boy, so guess we are getting TWO little babies!!! You didn't know that did you!?!" Just too funny. Anyway, while snuggling she suddenly decided she could not have a sibling, either older or younger. With aligator tears streaming down her face she commented "mama, I don't want you to stop hugging me, so I told God not to give us any babies or any other children". I could not believe this nor can I figure out where it comes from; she says she does not remember being in the Orphanage, and yet this is exactly what used to happen- if a "cuter", or younger child came in- the others were shoved to the side and no longer were the "cuddle bunnies".

She may claim to not remember, but she was 2 years old and we continued to visit the orphanage for 2 more years post placement- so if nothing else she continued to see this happening and often asks about children from the Orphanage. There was one little boy, 10 days older than Katie that the orphanage "Ommas" called her "yobo" or boyfriend- they were also known as "virtual twins". We wanted to adopt Joon also, but he was deemed "unadoptable" until recently, when a friend of mine was able to begin the long, drawn out process to adopt him! We are praying this legal fight with Eastern Adoption agency ends soon and they send the paperwork to the Family Courts (the paperwork was ready nearly a year ago, but Eastern keeps dragging their feet).

Well, I guess I will end here- just a note as to the Green color-Kaitlyn says "the rain brings green grass mama" so here is to green grass! I will leave you with a few pictures of what I found when I went to get her out of the tub...Well looks as if the pictures decided to add at the beginning, so I leave you with: prayers for sweet dreams, a desire to learn more about the Awesome God that blessed me with such a sweet little girl-knowing I did not deserve it-Thank You God for loving me SO much!
Joun Pome day say yo- good nite...

Friday, February 15, 2008

Singing His Praises!

Today we are singing the praises of our wonderful Lord~Kaitlyn's passport has arrived! Under "Nationality" it states"United States of America!! We have been working to see this for nearly 3 years and have been told on more than one occasion that there was a large possibility it would not happen, but as we know- God is Bigger!
Needless to say, Daddy and I cried a few tears. Kaitlyn says "mama, it makes my heart hurt to see you cry". I had to explain that they were tears of happiness and of course she wanted to know if they were "like the tears you cried when God and Jesus said you could be my mama?!" I had to admit, not quite the same-but these were pretty close! ;-)
To celebrate, we went out to eat-not many choices around here, but it was Katie's call-so we ended up at Pizza Hut. We could have gone to the rinky-dink PH here in town (about 6 miles away), but the food is nasty and Katie cannot stop talking about the lady with the rotten teeth that were worn down to nubs- felt bad when Katie asked her "what happened to your teeth, you didn't brush them before going to bed?" lol Anyway, we drove 20 miles to the next town and ate at PH/WingStop...actually was pretty tastey! Before going to Korea I hated PH, but in Korea Peejah Haut-lol- is awesome and we learned to like it. Well, we had some great pizza tonight that was not greasy, some good hot wings and salad. We ran the poor waitress ragged I think- and she is due to have a baby next month! Kaitlyn ate more food than she weighs I think~having consumed 6 wings (large ones), a large scoop of pineapple chunks, 2 thick slices of "Larry" (cukes-Larry is the name on Veggie Tales), 4 large cherry tomatoes, and 2 rather large slices of pizza with cheese stuffed crust; it is no wonder she says "I think I ate too much and will squish food out my nose!" lol
We stopped at Wal Mart and bought 8 sets of the kiddy valentine's day necklace and bracelet sets for only 50 cents each! These will be shipped to some of the little girls at Kaitlyn's orphanage-she is excited to share a few items with them. We also found a few Premie outfits on sale for a definite "bargain" price to send ot my niece Tina for her newest additions-Caedyn (boy at 4lb 9oz) and cyla (girl, 3lb 6 oz) who are doing really well for having been born about 7 weeks too early!
The rain and thunderstorms we were to have today have held off until only a few moments ago- so we had many things to be thankful for today. Kaitlyn said her "Thank Yous" during her night time prayers and here are a few of the things she mentioned: "My US cizens, my family, for playing in my room and watching "Word World", for my dog that barks too much, and for you kept me in your heart and loved me so much-God you bless me too much and love me so much and I say Thank YOU!" I think I will have to agree with her- He loves me too much, but I am going to accept it and Thank Him!!!
Hope everyone else sleeps as well as we will tonight- there is something to say about the Peace one feels knowing their children are now protected by the US Consitution and a citizen of one of the greatest if not THE greatest Nation in the World-for all the problems our Country has- it is still BLESSED!
Hugs and good nite~

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

a very Pink day

Whew! What a day!

We started out with an appointment for Kaitlyn to have a physical as the one from Oct 07 has "myteriously fallen out of the computer system". Hmmm, and we are to trust this computer system that is DoDDs wide??!! OOOOOK~!

Well, Kaitlyn was NONE to happy to overhear one of the nurses and I discussing "immunizations" and she immediately piped up with "Mama, I AM NOT going to get shots! am I???"" Well due to some up coming plans, I let her get off without the immunizations- felt kinda bad as she tried SOOO hard to not let the alligator tears overflow her little eyes, but overflow they did and left huge wet spots on her red sweater...then we walked into the Dr.'s office and she screamed..."Mama, a BONEY is in here!" There, against the far wall was a life-size skeleton..."Mr Boney". I laughed, the doctor looked at me like I had 4 heads and wondered if he should call CPS...I had to explain that when she first came home we placed a small skeleton in her brother's bed when he came in drunk on SOJU one nite...he woke up screaming, thinking he was sleeping in the subway with a dead man...we laughed until we peed our pants but for some reason Jeongah is afraid of "Mr Boney" now.

We spent 20 minutes, yes, 20 minutes, explaining that it was not REAL bones, and that it showed where all of our bones are - so it was a GOOD "Mr. Boney"...she was NOT buying it...she said he had ugly bones and as she was an angel from Heaven, her bones HAD to look better, so she still did not like him.

Iam happy to announce that our "little" Kaitlyn is now 42 inches (she was 24 at age 2) and 38.6lbs (18 at age 2). Ok, so she has been bouncing between 36 and 38 lbs for nearly a year- but she is cute as can be and the Doctor was pleased with her weight- she is still in the 50th percentile, compared to the "does not show on the graph" when placed with us at age 2...

Many of you have noted that I use a color to show what we are celebrating that day....yes, PINK has a symbol for today! Kaitlyn had her first Ballet/Tap dance class today and thinks she is going to dance like the angels and float like a "Nabi" (Korean for butterfly)...Daddy and I were SO proud of her. I happened to be dropping off her Physical at the day care registation office when I heard they had a Ballet class open up-of course they were supposed to have called several of us, but-we got in today after missing only one class last week. Lucky for us Wal Mart carries Ballet apparel! Kaitlyn HAD to have Pink with black slippers. We already had a pair of "footless tights" that she loved, and in pink, so we added the "velveteen" leotard, a mandatory pink skirt (only mandatory as Kaitlyn says "ballerinas can't dance unless they have a skirt mom! I know this already") and the "oooooh so comfy" black ballet slippers.

We arrived at the children's gym for class and the ballet instructor asks 2 of us (parents of new students) "Do you have Tap shoes"

"Uh, no. We were told Ballet and we jumped to get them for class today, why do we need Tap Shoes for Ballet?"

"Oh, we do a 50/50 here"

"ok, but where are we to get Tap Shoes in this town of "no shopping"?

"You order them from me, I get them at a discount for ordering in bulk"

"OK, if we have to get them from you, and we are new to the class, why ask if we have Tap Shoes?"

"Well, do you".

"Did I order then already?"


"Oh, I guess we don't have any then" (by the way..."Heeere's your sign...")

"Do you want a pair"

"Don't we need them?"


"I guess we want a pair then" (and I am trusting my daughter with this woman, to teach her Ballet, with the door shut where I cannot watch??!! Does this blonde stuff "rub off"!!??)

"Miss Katie" had tons of fun, has been practicing her "butterfly run" all over the house and is happy as can be that she will "learn to dance like the angels"

Yes, today was a very PINK day!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Bubbles, Korean church, and Piano lessons

These first pictures show how the weather has been these last few days- warm enough to wear t-shirts and capris while blowing bubbles, some days ya just gotta appreciate what Louisiana has to offer! We have not had rain for about a week now- and as tomorrow is PWOC (protestant women of the chapel), a weekday get-together for women where we have fun, do a little bit of Bible study, and the kids get to spend time doing "kid things" (per little Miss Katie!) while the Mama's play- it will probably rain-lol. Seems like it rains every Tuesday around here.
Yesterday we finally attended a very small local Korean church- supposed to be "Full Gospel" which I thought meant a little on the contemporary side, but it was far from contempary, and very much on the "small" side. Including Kaitlyn and I, the American associate pastor and his family (wife and 2 children) there were about 15 people in attendance- with the youngest being Kaitlyn. There was no special service for her, so she had to sit with the adults-she kept the two elderly Korean "Halmonies" behind us entertained-they kept reaching up to stroke her hair and pat her head. I kept her mouth full of candy so she would not talk so loud, and she had fun standing up to "read" the hymnal and look over the Ajumma's shoulder in front of us. The music was "dry" and the associate pastor must be used to teaching foreign children- but all in all we survived. Near the end of the service I noticed a few more attendees- about 15, come in and have a seat; I soon found out why! A Korean lunch is served immediately following the service. Kaitlyn was in heaven and soon forgot she was the youngest at the table as she began "chowing down" (her words, not mine! lol- but she did!!) on a totally awesome soup of Kimchi-daenjong Chigae, some fresh make kimchi (yes! no MSG), some fresh sauteed spinach, and authentic (it is made by Koreans it must be authentic!) Galbi. This little one ate more than the grown man sitting next to and in front of her! While I was washing her kimchi (rinsing in water to remove some of the "gochu" or red pepper to remove some of the spiciness) in an attempt to keep up with how fast she can stuff it in her mouth- either she dropped a piece of kimch or I did. All I know is we all heard a pitiful "OH MAMA! I dropped a piece of kimchi!" Jokingly I stated, "Kaitlyn, we must not waste kimchi" (it is very expensive here in the wonderful state of Louisiana so we have pretty much "rationed it" since moving here)- next thing we know the pastor's wife is standing over us with a container of kimchi and a HUGE plate of kimchi- "would you like some kimchi to eat, and would you like to take some home?". Kaitlyn was all too quick to chime "Mama, can we PLEEEEEASE take some home?!" How can I refuse perfectly wonderful, healthy kimchi??? (remember, NO MSG). We ended coming home with about 12 dollars worth of kimchi, enough of the wonderful soup for 2 meals, galbi, spinach, and enough fun to make us want to go back. The only 16 year old in attendance, a Korean/American whispered "come at 12 O'clock and you only have to eat!" I nearly choked on my
Kaitlyn was so happy to help dry spoons and chopsticks after lunch that she danced and had all the ajummas laughing and singing in the kitchen. We were ready to go home when we were suddenly escorted to the "free music lessons". Below you will see Kaitlyn patiently waiting for her 15 minute piano lesson. I have been trying to tell her that the Violin is NOT the only instrument in the world, and until she had this lesson she did not agree with me.(oh darn, the one with her waiting her turn seems to have disappeared!).

She came away having learned that her thumb is "one" or "Eel" (phonetically speaking) and that each finger has a placement that does not change. As we got into the car to come home she sang "mama, the Violin makes beautiful music and makes me happy, but I think the piano can do it to". She spent much of Sunday afternoon and today practicing her 5 finger postions on her little keyboard (ok, so it is only a Disney princess one she got a year ago for Christmas, it does the job!). I think next Sunday we may try to find the Korean church that has "maaaahnee" children- otherwise this church will probably be a one a month visit for the wonderful fellowship we were able to partake of.

Well, this is how our weather has been for the last few days- sunny and warm enough to wear t-shirts and capri pants while blowing bubbles! Some days ya just gotta appreciate Lousianna! Kaitlyn kept herself fairly busy blowing bubbles while I fixed lunch-we were blessed with "left-overs" from a Korean church we attended yesterday; some Kimchi-daenjong chigae, some "homemade" kimchi (no MSG!!!), some "bap" (we got to make it fresh this morning) and a few pieces of galbi-even the dog was joyful for the Korean church as he gets the bones from Kaitlyn's galbi-lol.

As previously mentioned, we-Kaitlyn and I- attended a Korean church yesterday for our Sunday worship. We had been invited by one of the ladies that runs a local dry cleaning business to attend the Korean Full Gospel Church about 2 blocks away and also have been invited to attend another Korean church somewhere in town. As we are not sure where the one in town is, we elected to attend the Full Gospel one. This is not a service we will frequent- partly as there were only, if we are lucky, 10 people in the service and none were Kaitlyn's age. Near the end of the service, during which poor Kaitlyn had to sit with me-a few other people showed up and we soon found out why-lunch is served immediately after the service! We were very blessed to dine with about 23 friendly, loving Koreans and 2 American associate pastors. We could not have asked for better fellowship adn Kaitlyn was so engrossed with feeding her "Korean food deprived" body that she no longer realized she was the only person under the age of 16 in attendance :-). This little girl ate more than the grown man sitting next to her. I of course did the kind mama thing and washed her kimchi so it would not be so spicey (washing it in water to remove part of the "gochu" or red pepper) and as she was stuffing it in, or "chowing down" as she says-she dropped a small piece of kimchi on the floor. I heard "OH MAMA! Look! I dropped some kimchi!!" I told her we needed to be careful and not waste kimchi- of course I was joking but she did not think so-kimchi is expensive here in the great state of Louisiana and we have essentially "rationed" it for the past few months. Suddenly the pastor's wife is standing over us with a plate of two kinds of kimchi- piled higher than I would dare to pile any plate and asking "would you like to take some home too?" Kaitlyn looks at me and asks "mama, can we PLEEEEEASE take some home?" I, of course cannot refuse to take the precious comodity home and we were blessed with about 12 dollars worth of wonderful kimchi and some soup and hence we had a terrific lunch while daddy ate "BBQ" pork sandwhiches :-).

Another great aspect of the Korean church was the free "music lesson" given after the luncheon-