new camera

Thought I'd try out our new camera on the dudes. I don't know about you, but it is pretty dang impossible to get two squirmy boys to look at the camera at the same time and smile at the same time and not have any fingers in mouths at the same time. One is hard enough. Both? Forget it. All three? Looks like I just voided our camera warranty.

So I decided to test it out on our guests, who came over for a cupcake-making party later that afternoon. The adorable girl - we'll call M - is in the same kinderg class as June29, and she brought along her equally adorable little brother, K.

By the way, these kids are über-polite.

We made chocolate cupcakes with blue and red frosting and rainbow sprinkles...

And our very own Sprinkles-in-a-box (technically it came in a tube)...

June29 made sure to take a bow, but not before he explained to M that she had to curtsy. She didn't want anything to do with that.

One more smile for the camera...

Fat chance. What is it with boys and eye contact?

Let's try another...

Ah, much better.

Thanks to M, K and Mom for coming over and making the best cupcakes in town.



his first story book

June29 made and wrote his first book. All by himself. I wasn't home at the time but Lao Lao was. She said he disappeared for a bit (apparently to my room) and then proudly presented his creation to her when he was finished. When I came home he was standing at the front door, ready to read outloud the first - and so far only - chapter of his story book. Truthfully, I was blown away. And I don't think it was because he's my kid. Really, I was impressed. When I asked who helped him, he said he did it by himself - stacked two sheets of blank paper, folded them in half, stapled the edges for binding (here I drew in a breath) and wrote chapter 1.

Title: Me and DD and the Jagin [dragon]

June29 was pretty excited and proud of himself. He brought it to school that day to show Mrs. E and she asked him to sit in the "author chair" and read his story to the class:

One day DD and me were walking in a forest and we saw a dragon in the forest sitting in sadly. When we saw the dragin sitting in the tree we gave him some of the magic dragon fly a way. Chapter 1.

A beginning and an end. A perfect story.





sunday morning

A blue sky after yesterday's rain. Photographed by June29.


February 28. The day after my surgery. My right cheek is the size of a euro square pillow. OK, not that big but it's definitely puffy. I'm not supposed to do much physical activity so I decided to take some pics of the boys in the backyard.

I have 4 boys* :: November3 who is a big boy at heart, dad to the others, and known to the world as "Po"; June29 who is my first-born (affectionately referred to as "Bao"); November9 who is the "DD" or baby brother; and our beloved 7-yo pound mix, Mantou or MT, named after the little white bun served with Peking duck. (As you can see, MT is neither little nor white nore bun-like.)

{UPDATED ON 01.28.11} Hooray! we've added a 5th boy:  January27 affectionately coined "Tiny" by his big brother or "GG".

It's a monthly tradition to take photos (I like headshots) of each of the boys on the day they were born. So, June29 gets his photoshoot on the 29th of every month (Feb 28 in this case) and November9 gets his monthly shoot on the 9th. It's a good way to stay on top of it and keep the photos current. It's not so good on my G5 storage.

This morning was a beautiful day so I thought it'd be a great time to introduce the boys to all my (non-existent) readers out there.

June29 :: born 2004. kindergartner. artist. swimmer. tee ball player. reader. baker. loves to play with DD.

November9 :: born 2008. toddler. signs. ball thrower. climber. singer and groover. loves to follow Ge-Ge.

Most of the time spent in the backyard was playing with MT who is obsessed with balls. Any and every kind. Which is not a good thing when your toddler is ball-obsessed as well and likes to try and stick his fingers in his mouth after each throw.

I said try.

I figure there are so many good things to come out of my new blog (which, seeing how much time I've spent on this already, is quickly turning into an obsession):

  1. I can send it to Ah-Gong, who is currently in Tainan, for his weekly grandson fix.
  2. I can procrastinate on all those empty sage green Martha Stewart albums I have stacked in my closet ready to fill lovingly with vacation photos and photo corners, school photos and artwork, ticket stubs and souvenirs.
  3. I can procrastinate even more on creating all those Photoworks albums for June29 and November9. Those annual albums cleverly titled: A Year in the Life. One per year of their life. Those beautiful, coffee-table-worthy albums filled with oversized closeups and carefully arranged triptychs. Amateur photos taken by a wanna-be photographer (that'd be me) bleeding off the pages with cute captions commemorating each precious moment of their lives. Who has time for that stuff?
  4. I can be another designer-turned-mom-of-young-kids-turned-late-night-blogger-turned...Ah, the good life. I used to wonder how great their lives must be to have the time to write so much, and in such detail, and with such pretty photos! Now, I realize they probably don't have the time but do it because it's fun, it's addicting and it's therapeutic to boot.

So this is a good compromise, whether temporary or not. I'll still have those stacks of albums in my closet and I'll still have those digital photos organized in folders by month and age. They're not going anywhere.


*For privacy purposes, I refer to my boys by their blog aliases or nicknames and not by their real names.


i'm so excited and i just can't hide it!

[Posted by the Occasional Blogger: November3]

TV crapped out last week. We try to turn the sucker on and all we get in return is a loud, annoying buzzing sound.

[Pic of the TV with the boys. Can you guess who's the culprit?]

Normally, I'd be freaking.  Big time.  Who's Jack going to kill next on 24 and does it promise to involve sticking a bamboo up the arse?  Are Bill, Barb, Nicki, and Margene going to get oily and naked on Big Love?  Will Ellen and Patty finally poke each other's eyes out on Damages?  Inquiring Novembers want to know!!

But, I'm not freaking. I no freaky freaky because the mechanical failure of our 46" Samsung DLP means it's time to usher in the age of the 58" Samsung Plasma, which we'll affectionally nickname PN58B860.

Oh, PN58B860, how we will love thee and not just because of thy 3-year in-home warranty!

Watching DLP is like listening to 8-track.  Outdated.  Outmoded.  Outhouse, baby!

My only regret is that the DLP didn't crap out sooner so that we could've watched the Super Bowl on PN58B860.

For those of you who want to follow suit, I read just about every self-proclaimed expert and reviewer review out there.  Here's my summary.  Panasonics start out great, but their blacks fade quickly over time and Panny won't fix it.  Vizio - you get what you pay for.  Pioneer kuro Elite - hands down the best set out there but I want to send my kids to college before we croak.

So where to buy?  Go to Amazon and their link to Buy.com lists for $2177.  No tax and that includes shipping.  You can also snag a 3-year warranty for $139, which is a steal.

I have officially saved you four months of research, my friends.  Join in the PN58B860 revolution and enjoy the finest viewing experience money can buy without mortgaging your chill-renz futures!



finding the unexpected

I am in recovery. This morning I had dental surgery. For 4 hours my jaw felt like a construction site - I was jackhammered, drilled, pounded on and poked at. Oh how I wish I were knocked out. The sounds were frightening to say the least. There's nothing like listening to someone pound away at your teeth as if you were a plywood plank.

Twelve hours later, the right side of my face is swollen, my jaw is sore and my mouth is tender. So what do I find myself doing? Writing my very first blog entry. Who would've thunk? The best part by far has been designing my very own page (and the page of the Occasional Blogger: November3; we share everything). Nevermind that it's taken me hours to figure things out and to get it just right. Nothing could be more satisfying than figuring things out and getting it just right.

All along I said I'd never have time to blog - no, prided myself on it - and now it seems I have all the time in the world. I am in recovery after all.

My boys keeping me company as I restfully recover...

...or are they?

(If you look really closely you can see my swollen right cheek.)


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