Friday, December 31, 2010

A Little Glimpse into Life with My Little Lamb

Tonight didn’t end up quite as we planned as one child was sick so we’ve postponed our New Year’s celebration until Sunday.  It’s more important to us that we get together as a group than what day it is on the calendar.

It ended up being a really good thing for Hannah and I too as when I picked her up from daycare she had a fever.  She had an ear infection 2 weeks ago and just finished antibiotics on Tuesday so I’m hoping it’s not that.  Unfortunately her history is that a fever is one of her only symptoms of an ear infection.  We may end up taking a trip to urgent care tomorrow if her fever returns. It was gone by the time she went to bed courtesy of Advil and Tylenol.  Poor lamb – I sure do hate it when she’s sick!  We did enjoy a fun evening at home together snuggling on the couch, reading, watching a couple of her shows on TV and playing.  There is no other place on the entire world I’d rather be than home with my little love when she’s sick.

What I would like to share with you are a couple of videos captured yesterday and today.  Life with Hannah XiaoFen is absolutely amazing and she seems to be growing and changing right before my eyes every single day!  I love to hear her little voice and new words are emerging daily.  I love how she initiates words now too rather than just repeating what is said to her.  The other day when we walked outside she covered her eyes and said, ‘Mama!  Sunny!’  Cool!!  Yesterday it was when she walked up to a new picture of her that I’d just framed and said, ‘Mama!  Shao Shao!’  She often refers to herself as Hannah but this was the first time I’d heard her call herself ‘Shao Shao’ which is one of the nicknames I use regularly.  Oh how it warmed my heart!

Here she is during some of our playtime yesterday.  She is still a huge Mickey Mouse Clubhouse fan and received these little characters for Christmas.  I love how she (mis)pronounces each character’s name and yes, ‘Mimmie’ refers to both Mickey and Minnie for her. 

I have been trying all week to capture Hannah’s adorable little ‘Santa Santa Ho Ho Ho!’ and finally managed to do it….kinda. I think it’s adorable and wanted to have it for a keepsake.  She says it numerous times each day but like any 22 month old she decides when she’ll say it and normally it’s not when the camera is rolling.  :o)

Hannah and I wish you a Happy New Year and all the best in 2011!

Choosing her New Year’s Eve Jewels

Hannah and I are spending New Year’s Eve with a few friends so she went through her jewels to choose the perfect ones.  So sweet!DSC_6427



Happy New Year everyone!!

Christmas Day with Family and Friends

After opening our gifts at home we bundled up and headed around the corner to our traditional Christmas breakfast with Auntie Carol and Uncle David and their family.DSC_0283

For part of the kids gift hunt Katie had to play ‘Jingle Bells’ on the saxophone.  Hannah checking out this cool instrument.DSC_6330

We went to my parents in the afternoon for our family gift exchange and a delicious turkey dinner.  Unfortunately in all of the excitement I forgot to pull out my camera and only took a couple of videos.  Hopefully I can snag some pics from my brother and dad.

Hannah is the youngest of 10 grandchildren and there were times when she found waiting her turn a little tough.  This was one of those moments but with one pull of the paper all was right in her little world once again.

A special gift from the kids to my parents.

Our last stop of the day was a visit with Nana and Papa.  Once again all the fun and excitement meant few pics.  Will have to change that next year!

Trying out her new computer.  Now Hannah can blog when Mama does.DSC_6333

Enjoying one of the cookies Santa left behind.


There is nothing better than a snuggle with Nana at the end of a fun, busy day.DSC_6338

Hannah received a new Mickey Mouse Clubhouse DVD which she was excited about.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Wonderful Christmas Morning!

Hannah and I shared a great Christmas day together filled with family and friends.  The day began quietly at home with just the two of us reading the Christmas story together and then excitedly checking out what Santa had brought.

This package contained a ‘Shaoey and Dot: The Christmas Miracle’ book written by Steven Curtis Chapman.  I just found out that SCC is coming to the Toronto area in March and excitedly bought myself a little Christmas present – a ticket for Hannah and I to go.  SCC and his wife have adopted 3 precious little ones from China and his concerts often have a time dedicated to families touched by adoption so I’m really looking forward to going with Hannah.  Here’s my sweetie in her new Christmas jammies opening her book.DSC_6296

Santa also tucked in a new headband and some pretty bracelets too.  All were tried on just to make sure they fit just right!  She put her headband on herself – can you tell?  :o)  I was actually pretty impressed with her headband wearing as she has never worn one but immediately upon finding it in her stocking she knew exactly what to do with it.DSC_6307

Hannah also unwrapped some fun Disney characters to play with and a cash register with cool buttons to push and a bell to ring.DSC_6311

No stocking would be complete without chocolate so once we found them we quickly indulged in some early morning
chocolate treats.  Mmm!


The day had begun and there was much fun still in front of us so we bundled up and headed to our friend’s place for a yummy Christmas breakfast.  More to come……

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Do You Think She’s Contagious?

Heh!  What fun it was to watch Hannah with this little sheet of stickers.  She kept adding more and more to her cute little face.




The funny thing was she was having a great time until she caught sight of herself in the mirror and then she wanted them off right away.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Going to Work with Mama

I’m thankful to work at a place which encourages us to bring our children to work on Christmas Eve day.  After 22 years of going in on my own on the 24th, today all that changed and it was amazing to walk to work with Hannah in her stroller and realize that finally it was me who was taking my child to work!!  I’m a mom and I am still thankful to God every single day for allowing me the awesome privilege of being Hannah’s mom!

With those thoughts close in my mind seeing this brought tears to my eyes.DSC_6257

I didn’t even remember that these beads will still on a shelf below my desk until I saw Hannah playing with them.  When I realized what she was doing tears immediately sprang to my eyes.  For those who may not have been following my blog while I waited for Hannah, each of these beads represented 1 day of files that China had to match before I would receive Hannah’s referral.  These beads moved painfully slowly but I can tell you without a word of a lie that Hannah was worth every single second of the wait as truly she is the one and only child that God was preparing for me.  She is my daughter and in His perfect timing He brought us together.  Thank you Lord!!

Hannah decided to see what it was like to be Mama working in the world of telephony.  She looks like a natural and is already multi-tasking.DSC_6260rev

After working for a bit it was time to go find Auntie Norma and give her a Christmas hug.DSC_6272

Hannah and I were both surprised when Santa took time out of his busy schedule to visit Mama’s work!  At first she was a little concerned so I reassured her that I’d be happy to go with her to visit Santa DSC_6264rev

but after watching a few of the other children go up to visit Santa on their own she wiggled out of my arms and ran up to him!DSC_6267

Hannah didn’t get brave enough to actually talk to Hannah but she did pose for a couple of picsDSC_6269

and gave him a big hug before waving 'bye!’ 


Wow….what a difference from just a month ago!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Milk and Cookies for Santa

Following last year’s tradition, Hannah left out milk and cookies for Santa that she was sure he would like!



2009Imported Photos 00205

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

To each of you from Hannah and I, merry, merry CHRISTmas!!!Christmas 2010a - 21 months

Christmas 2010b - 21 months

But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.   Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.’

Luke 2: 10, 11

Friday, December 24, 2010

Mama’s Favourite Christmas Book

If you’ve been here for any amount of time you’ve noticed that my sweet daughter loves to be on the move.  Climbing, jumping and running are a part of her daily life and she loves to move, move, move.  Because of this, story time is pretty limited.  There are certain times of the day that she’ll sit to read but unfortunately when I tried to record this little video it was close to bedtime and that means her energy was peaked.  I used to misinterpret her energy and think that she wasn’t tired but in reality she has more and more energy, the more tired she gets.  She goes, goes, goes and then crashes when I give her her bedtime bottle and then normally sleeps for 10-11 hours.  I tease that she has 2 speeds:  Fast forward and Sleep!

The book that we were reading together in this video is called, ‘The Very First Christmas’ and is put out by Hallmark.DSC_6243   The reason I like this book so much is that not only is it the story of Jesus’ birth but it is a recordable book where you record voices reading the story.  This book has 7 pages in it which is perfect for us.  In the order of reading are:  Grandma (my Mom), Grandpa (my Dad), Nana (friend Sharon), Papa (friend Larry), Great-Grandma (GG) Dale and Great-Grandpa (GG) Dale (Sharon’s parents) and Mama (me!) 

The other neat thing about this recording is that there are numerous places where you can hear Hannah’s sweet little voice in the background.  Unfortunately she took a little tumble when GG was reading his page and you can hear her cry but it fit the story well so we decided to leave it in.  Each time we get to that page she looks at me as it to ask if it’s baby Jesus that is crying?

This book is a treasure now and will be for years to come too!

A couple of pics when we were recording it.

GG and NanaDSC_6193

GG and MamaDSC_6195

The finished product. 

A treasure for years to come…

Hannah’s Interpretation of the Story of Jesus’ Birth

Hannah has a great little FP nativity set.  Most days we play with the people and animals and retell the story of Jesus’ birth and the scene looks something like this:DSC_6250

With the exception of 1 AWOL king it’s pretty much the way it goes.

The other night Hannah decided to mix things up a bit and her interpretation was hilarious!  I love her creativity!  The angel atop the stable has been replaced with a sheep.  Makes sense.  And, each of the fence posts where she could find a spot she placed one of the characters.  Cute!DSC_6240


I have another post to put up about a new Christmas tradition.  Will try to get it up later today.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

It’s All In Disney’s Hands Now

Some of you may remember earlier this fall when I submitted this video to Disney's ‘Let the Memories Begin!’ campaign. 

It was fun to share a couple of our special memories with other Disney fans but truly after it was submitted I didn’t really think much more about it.

Fast forward to last Friday when I received an email from Disney saying they’ve short listed the video to possibly be used in an upcoming ad campaign!!  Cool!!  After getting over the shock we excitedly spent the weekend looking for the original video (which thankfully we found) and signing legal documents for all in the video and submitted them to Disney yesterday.

We’re not sure if it’s going to be used or not but how exciting to even make it this far! 

You know I’ll keep you posted as I hear more. 


Last Saturday we had a surprise birthday brunch to celebrate Mom’s birthday.  She and Dad were on their way home from Florida on her actual birthday so we decided to surprise her with a special celebration when she least expected it.  It was a fun time and yes, she was surprised!

DSC_6129 DSC_6131 DSC_6132

We bought her a beautiful family pendant with all 10 of the grandkids birthstones in it but I didn’t get a good picture of it.  I’ll work on changing that soon.  The gift was perfectly timed too as earlier in the morning (before Mom even knew we had the cars packed with surprise birthday goodies) she shared about how for years and years as they struggled with infertility, she and dad questioned if they’d ever have children let alone grandchildren.  Fast forward to now and God has blessed them with 3 children and 10 grandchildren!  God is so good!

Happy birthday Mom!  What fun it was to celebrate with you!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Just When I Think She’s Tried Everything….

…she does this!   Check out the proud little look on her face!!

As I finished preparing supper (Okay, Does reheating pasta purchased at the grocery store and throwing a pre-made pancake into the microwave count as ‘making supper?’.  A funky combo for sure but both got ‘yah’ answers when I asked if she wanted them) I asked Hannah if she was ready to eat.  She yelled ‘Yay!!’ and ran for her high chair.  Normally I pull it out of it’s storage place but today she carefully manoeuvred it by the Christmas tree and into the middle of the room.  As I was complimenting her on her great driving skills she began to climb up the back.  Knowing it’s got a great base that can hold her weight I waited to see what would happen.  I was as surprised as you when she climbed up and in!  So much so that I asked her to do it again as I grabbed my Flip to catch this moment.

It’s more than a little frightening to think about what she might try to climb next!

And the Christmas tree?  It still proves to be a great source of entertainment for Hannah as she plays with the decorations daily.   Saturday morning she decided she needed help reaching the snowman Mama had carefully placed out of her reach.  Creative isn’t she??DSC_6124

Sadly she did reach this cute little snowman on Sunday morning and he was laid to rest (all 300 itty bitty pieces of him) in the kitchen garbage can.  Mama was sad as I really wanted this ornament to be one I put on the tree each year as it was the first one she ever made for our tree.  Ange (awesome, amazing, wonderful daycare provider!!!) to the rescue though as I purchased a new plastic ornament today – they only had glass when she went – and so after getting a couple of instructions from Ange, Hannah will make Snowman II to adorn our tree for years to come!  Oh how happy this makes me!

Only once have I heard ‘Uh oh!!’ and turned to see this: DSC_6148

I’m guessing she thinks if her back is to the tree I won’t figure out what happened!  DSC_6149To the best of my knowledge she wasn’t trying to climb the tree when it fell but since I wasn’t watching at the time and given the acceleration of her climbing skills I’m guessing only the angel on top and the snowman decoration watching her really know what happened for sure.  And yes, that’s the angel doing a nose dive on the dining room floor. 

The tree was quickly righted and the angel placed atop once again.  Will it be the last time the tree takes a tumble?  One really never knows since it will probably be up for another couple of weeks.  Will keep you posted!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Thanks Uncle J!

Uncle J came over to pick up something from our house the other day so this Mama was quick to ask him for help.  There is much I can do around the house but other times it’s just nice to have some help.  My dad and brother are great at helping me with little projects but this time it was Uncle J to the rescue fixing Hannah’s dresser so that the drawers didn’t fall off the track each time I opened them.DSC_6020

Hannah was quick to help him out and great and quality control.  DSC_6023 In the end she gave him 2 toddler thumbs up and her dresser drawers have worked perfectly ever since.DSC_6024

Thanks so much Uncle J!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Brrr! It’s Been a Cold Few Days!

This week we’ve been experiencing some c-o-l-d weather!  Monday I emailed M3 to say we were ready for some warm temps and thought a visit to CA was in order.  She said to let her know what time we were flying in and she’d be at the airport.  Now that’s a good friend!!  If it were only that easy!

With the wind chill Monday it was a frigid –32oC/-25oF!  I walked to my car with a mitt over my head as brain freeze was happening in the short time it took me to walk the couple of blocks to my car.  Thankfully it’s not like this often but when it is I’m a wimp and immediately begin planning (imaginary) trips to places warmer than where I am.

Last night I had to call M3 as on my way home when I saw something that even made me giggle!  One of the men in our complex was trying to get to his mail but the lock was frozen.  After trying to gain access by warming up his key and using lock de-icer (both without success) he got serious.  As I arrived to get my mail he was lighting a flaming torch thingy (right behind my back which made me quite nervous in my coat with the fake fur collar) and he was flaming his mail box!  Heh….that’s a first! 

I’m not sure if it worked or not but you can see a little bit of the soot left behind on his mailbox. 

Now that’s someone who’s serious about getting their Christmas cards!!


If I’m suddenly in the mood for smores this winter I know I can look up the guy in Unit 21 and he’ll be only too happy to help me!

Lighting Up Our Christmas Tree

I thought I’d included this video in the last post but just realized I forgot to attach it.  Oops!  Here is Miss Hannah lighting up our Christmas tree.  So sweet!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

So Happy with our Christmas Tree Decision

Hannah has been having an absolute blast with our Christmas tree!  Making it a kid friendly tree this year has been a great decision for us as she has spent literally hours playing with it.  I had years and years of having that ‘perfect little tree’ in my home and now I love that it looks like a variation of this every single day!


Hannah has been battling a nasty cold for the past week or so so much of our weekend was spent hanging out at home.  This time together gave us lots of time for stories, playing with her little Fisher-Price nativity set and the tree.  Most of her toys remained untouched but the tree – not so much!   DSC_6088





Another fun thing that happened this weekend was that somewhere along the way we started a new game.  Hannah thinks that if she blows on the tree the lights come on.  So cute!  This morning as I was packing my lunch I heard, ‘Mama?’ and looked over to see her blowing on the tree for the lights to come on.  I quickly plugged them in and her face lit up almost as much as the tree did.  I was able to capture our little game earlier tonight.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

She Makes Me Laugh Every Single Day!!

Tonight as I was getting ready for bed Hannah was hanging out on our bed.  Seeing that she was practicing huge jumps across it and flopping on her tummy when she landed, visions of Christmas stitches were flashing through Mama’s head.  She was getting dangerously close to the footboard and headboard so I placed her on the floor for a moment. 

My independent Miss didn’t want to be on the floor so took matters into her own hands.  This is a recreation of what I saw and it made me laugh so hard!!

and another

Is there any question why we’re beginning gymnastics in the new year?

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Decorating(??) Our Christmas Tree

This year our Christmas tree is one created for fun and entertainment for a delightful 21 month old!  I decided about a month ago that I would forego most of my regular decorations and change it up for unbreakable Christmas balls, bells, bows and beads.  DSC_6046

When we’re at other people’s homes Hannah is taught not to touch their trees but ours is fully hers to decorate and re-decorate as she pleases.  The funny thing about that statement is that she spent far more time un-decorating our tree the night we put it up then actually putting decorations on the tree.  I put a few things on and she preferred to take them off.  I was quickly thankful that I’d chosen unbreakable balls as she tested their bounce quality within moments of them being hung on the tree.

The few decorations that did make it on were as expected, placed on one little branch.  I would show you a pic but they were quickly removed when above bounce quality was checked.

I put a few strands of pearls on first but there were many more left in the box.  Hannah quickly found them and they became a wonderful accessory.  You can see why Hannah is such good friends with Ro and Ree as over accessorizing is not in her vocabulary!   What is in her vocabulary right now is ‘No!’  Oh well, it’s just a stage, and a harmless one at that, and it will pass.  For now I hear ‘no’ to every question I ask although more and more often now it’s followed by ‘yes’ after she thinks about the question for a couple of seconds.  I wonder how many ‘no’s’ are captured in the videos just in this post?  I know I loose track on a daily basis.  :o)DSC_6056

Time for the bows and bells


The finishing touch.  Placing the angel on top of the tree.

A couple of my favourite decorations on our treeDSC_6075

Hannah made this cute little snowman at daycare.


Merry Christmas everyone!!


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