Monday, June 26, 2006

Going going....gone

Vacation....Here we come...

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Gift for my niece, Jessica

I made it just for you =)

Friday, June 23, 2006

Sitting up all by herself @ 7 months old

It looks like she is leaning against me, but Todd took the picture and can vouch that she's a proud sitter. She's seven months to the day and I finally got around to getting a few copies of her birth certificate.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Jasmin is closer to crawling...

I caught the moment. She was on her belly...arms stretched and belly off the floor and pushing her feet against our lazyboy. She looked proud. Now-I'm bracing myself to keep an owls eye on her every move. Everyday she is rolling farther and farther, standing up for longer periods of time, and taking more interest in and examining her toys. And I wish I could take the credit for teaching her all of it, but it's nature that's leading the way.

Jessica: I'm crocheting some stuff for you because you're my first and special niece! Kisses & Hugs

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Primerica to the Rescue!

Early this year, I became a Primerica associate but had to wait to have our finances shuffled and fixed. The wait is over- Thank God!

We had to wait until we had a year of mortgage history and this was the month! Thanks Peggy & Jerry for helping us move in last year! You're the best in-laws ever. =)

I feel like we took a huge step in the right direction. I'm 26 years young and am happy at the prospect of ditching our debt- house included- in about 14 years. I can't wait until I'm forty and financially set. The trick is to work towards financial goals on a daily basis and develop better habits.

Let's face it: rich or poor, most of our parents did not explain finances to us. Either you were brought up wealthy and felt set for your own future. Or, you were poor and didn't know what to do with the two pennies you rub together. And- most of those financial company giants out there don't want us be educated in their business to keep us dependent in debt (scary). If we don't have debt or mortgages- how would they make money?

I don't place blame on parents on the whole. Half the battle is the media and our materialist and capitalistic society. It's sink or swim in the big bad world; the best way to keep above water is to arm yourself with the facts.

How many of us work copious hours at jobs we don't love and end up missing out on family time? How many of us have anything to show for our incomes? Is it "in" to be in debt? I hope it changes soon.

I will do my best to help Jasmin learn the ins and outs of the power of money and the value of our underpaid time.

But for now, my family has a plan and is on track for financial independence! Oh yeah~

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Today's the Falls...

We enjoyed our short hike up the mountains. Now Todd has an idea how it is to be pregnant. LOL

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Happy Father's Day Todd!

It was a lazy holiday for the Fam'. I made breakfast; we had a frozen pizza for dinner. Didn't go anywhere.

I did give Todd an early Father's Day gift subscription a week ago. We also went to a Mexican Restaurant for lunch last week. So, I think we officially "celebrated" last week and today was an anti-climax.

Perhaps next year Jasmin will talk and we'll have a grand old time doing something together...

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Crampin' my style =p

As I said before: I am so excited for our upcoming trip back to IL.

But- the thought of my dear plants wasting away is cramping my style!

It's frustrating to think that I put so much love and care into making them grow and stay healthy, just for them to go to rubbish. =(

My inner earth goddess is screaming in protest. It's always wanting to be fully released. My stash of gardening stuff is building and feeling abandoned. But since we're leaving soon- I don't want to sow anymore seeds until we get back.

I truly would love to be the all-time green thumb. I worked in a flowershop- how else should I be. LOL My problem is that I'm a sporadic gardener. I'd really love to prepare and plan an awesome garden so that perhaps I'll have a beautiful, organized, booming garden in the near future.

Do you think people would pay me to maintain and play in their gardens? LOL


Random Salad Idea

I tested this combination with a few lunch guests the other day and it was a hit.

I sliced canned carrots, canned beets. Combined them with cut lettuce and soy beans and add cheddar & parmesan cheese. Not only was it colorful, but it was sweet and healthy.

N.B. Don't mix ingredients together ahead of time b/c the salad will discolor (like the beet color). Just slice and shred ahead of time and combine when you're ready to serve.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Sittin' Pretty

This is Jasmin in her Daddy's old rocking chair! It was her first time sitting in it and she was beaming in front of the camera

Thursday, June 15, 2006


My new layer of understanding:

A lot of times, I still ponder and feed the pool of tears in my heart. I revisit the reasons why I was abandoned as a child. The child part of me still asks "what can a three year old child do wrong enough to be given away"? The answer is that it wasn't anything that I did at all; my mother made a choice, and the tidal wave that ensued altered my life tremendously.

But now, the adult part of my mind keeps editing how I digest this information over and over again. If my mother hadn't made that somewhat tragic decision, my life would not have been blessed with enriching experiences and beautiful friendships that I cherish.

Most of all, if I'd stayed in Korea, I would not have met Todd and would not have brought Jasmin in the world. If the tears of my past were the price of the blessing of my daughter, then I should be thankful- if only about my Jasmin.

I got the better half of the deal. I did nothing wrong; I had nothing to regret; I was able to be highly educated; I was able to experience the world and not just a rice paddy;I grew up strong and survived all of my own choices. And now- I have my daughter. Yes- I have prevailed.


Logical Tangent:

I read a post on another blog about losing a child through untimely death. With each word I read I felt my heart swell. The lady wrote about how our children are merely lent to us by God for a time. Though it is a beautiful sentiment that I agree with, I refuse to think that God would ever take my Jasmin away from me. Would he dare hurt me like that?

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Newest Best Picture

6 Months & 3 weeks

Transition away from Basinet

Last night was the second night that I put Jasmin "to bed" in the play-yard in our room. It is the middle step towards getting her to sleep in her crib in her own room alone. I think I'm having a harder time than she is. I think I've only let her sleep the whole night with us twice; but I've never been scared to let her sleep with me a few hours at a time. I love the way she giggles and smiles when I put her in bed next to me. It's like she thinks it's a sleepover- SO CUTE!

I have to get her used to sleeping without us soon because we'll be using a crib for her when we're in Illinois in a few weeks. So far she's been great with the change. She's never slept in a separate room since birth so I'm afraid we'll both have a hard time adjusting.

Jasmin is doing wonderful though. She's been a fairly easy and a very happy baby. She's even keeping herself entertained playing with her feet. She's also moving around to the different activities in her Ultra-Saucer. Her new thing is to change the channel or volume on the TV with the remote.

I still take forgranted her small feats because the days fly while my mind is still like molasses. I even threw a baby washcloth in the toilet! And then I burned cookies! And then, just as I was telling her that I hoped that she wasn't accident prone like her momma-I broke a glass! And all of that happened before 10:30AM today.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Give me Five!

Ms. Jasmin started slapping Todd's hand and "giving him five". It was hilarious. It's a new development. I'd rather get "fives" than her pinches. lol

Her tickle spot is right on the back side of her ribs on both sides. And-I'm biased of course- she has the cutest laugh! It cracks me up to hear her laugh and giggle.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The anticipation is killing me =)

We bought tickets to fly back to Illinois at the end of the month a few weeks ago. I can't stop thinking about seeing our family again. Well, it's "Todd's" original family- and my family by choice.

Yes- I may be one of the few married women who has a great relationship with their in-laws. But- I also don't have a close relationship with my own family to "fall back on".

I have been in denial for nearly two years. I AM SOOOO HOMESICK, or shall I say- "Illinois sick". lol I feel like I got the better end of the marriage deal- a husband and an extended family that I adore.

If ever I have a sad thought or a bad day- I focus on my daughter or the impending trip back to where I call "home".

Today, I called my SIL to go over some ideas and start planning our time together. I was almost in tears during our conversation. But- I think we will make the best of our time together and perhaps Todd will want to move back to IL in the next few years. (crossing my fingers)

I haven't felt this excited for anything in years. I'm going to relish every minute of our visit and take many photos and digi-tape the highlights.

Good thoughts from now on. =)

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Violin-o-phobia? =p

Well, for some reason "Ms. J" was not happy listening to the violin today. Everytime I played, she started crying- especially the higher notes. Well, I'm going to have to get her warmed up to the string sounds b/c I'm going to have her play when she's three or four. lol

Rumbi Island Grill

We got to eat here free tonight!
It was a promotional-invite only- dinner event and the mom's group was invited! Wahoo! There are perks to being a mom. lol

I had the Mahi mahi with pinapple salsa, rice and caesar salad. Todd had the Pork BBQ hawaiian style.

The meal was soooooooooo delicious!
Now, if only we could get them to open a location a lot closer to us!

I recommend this restaurant to anyone who wants a different eating experience and very yummy palatable food. It's exotic food that's not "scary" to eat.

It's a very family friendly place.

Aloha! =)

Friday, June 09, 2006

~Spoon-fed Baby~

Today she eagerly gobbled down her rice cereal
mixed with applesauce & water like a pro- sucking it off the spoon!
She leaned toward the spoon and ate every bit of it!

Our hearts danced

I wish Todd recorded Jasmin and I on our new digicamcorder. Out of the blue, I decided to hold Jasmin and danced around the room. OMG! She loved it! She was smiling and giggling.

She likes being upside down and exploring her physical world. If her feet happen to touch something- she pushes and kicks. She learns with every sound and touch. It's so cool to begin to understand her processes for learning all things related to life. I makes me realize how much people can take the littlest things, beautiful things, for granted.

OT: We're pretty sure that Jasmin has captured the essence of her Daddy. She seems to mimic his coughs and zeros in on the location of our remote control. You should watch her in action. =)

FLY LADY worked for me!

I know I've already posted this link and praised the concepts. But now, after two months of fluttering, I've made it work.

Today we had a person come over for an appointment with 15 minutes notice. And, you guessed it, I was ready and I finished tidying up just as the person arrived. I've now become a believer!

Now that I know it can work for me, I really need to work on the 15 minute rule...

Thursday, June 08, 2006

All Consuming

Check it out. It's a pretty cool site and I've added it to my blog.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

My latest observation & prediction

It took me a while to realize that when Jasmin insists on leaning to a particular direction while sitting in my lap that it was in the direction of the remote control! OMG, what a Daddy's Girl!

My next line of thinking was this: If she's so interested in the remote, maybe she'll be motivated enough to crawl to reach it. So I can "use" it to encourage her to practice crawling.

My third thought was: OMG, we watch too much TV and I should never admit to or share such information. Oops! (wink)

And my final thought was: wouldn't it be funny to record in her baby scrapbook that her first crawling adventure was to apprehend the remote control!

Does this make a daddy proud? (wink)

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Frugal Does a Body Good

Ok, I couldn't resist making my own contribution to all of the frugal genius out there. It's a work in progress- so check it out frequently.

Monday, June 05, 2006

I'm amazed

I've watched my Jasmin in a short few weeks blossom into an active and inquisitive baby. Just as I was wondering if she'd do anything (other than being cute and loveable) to inspire motherly pride- she's made up for the months of patiently waiting for her development and smiling and congratulating other proud moms.

With a deep breath- I blurt my proud thoughts for the first time. Over the course of the last month: Jasmin has been rolling back and forth, doing push ups, sitting in a lap and chair, holding her toes, giggling uncontrollably, rocking in her rocking chair and reaching for me and the remote control (a true daddy's girl).

Today- in an experiment of sorts- I moved her LeapFrog activity stand to her while she was sitting in her rocking chair and she started playing with the lever thingies and smiling and laughing! I didn't have to tell her what to do. She did it all by herself!

Ok- I think I've done enough boasting for one post. I've had quiet confidence in my Jasmin; today, I decided it was time to voice my pride!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Jump up, Jump up and get Down~

If I could post video files- I could show everyone how much Jasmin is enjoying her UltraSaucer! She's to the point were she has much better balance and feels comfortable putting weight on her legs. Now she's playing in it almost standing straight, bouncing and not using much arm support. I'm so proud! She started out just leaning against the thing.

BTW: We purchased a Digital Video Camera today! WAAHOOO! Now mommy has another toy to document all of our precious family moments. I figured we should have it for our trip/reunion to Illinois later this summer.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Future contestant on "The Biggest Loser"?

We went to a birthday party today

I dressed Jasmin in her cute summer jumper (with pant bottoms) for our friend's boy's 2nd birthday party.

We had fun. The cake was a Tonka truck cake- very cute.

There were more people there than I anticipated and I guess I went into shell (snail) mode. Thank God the BF/our friend of the mommy went to pick Todd up so he could be there too. Otherwise, I would have felt social overload. lol

It was nice to get out of the house. But I noticed that I am not taking Jasmin out enough because she gets so scared around other people. Do you think she was mirroring my shyness? I should be more careful of the example I give her. I guess I'm not the perfect mother I strive to be.

All in all, it was a beautiful day for a birthday party and we made the best of it.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Hill Billy Housewife

In my quest for frugal nirvana I found the above website. A lot of it is very helpful and insightful.

Is it a bad thing to be Asian and have a southern accent? (wink)

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Perfectionists are not productive!

We do a yo-yo cycle of behaviors: doing everything & be "perfect", or do nothing and let everything fall apart. I believe that the biggest slobs (me too at times) are the world's biggest perfectionists. And that-in itself- perpetuates the cycle of beating ourselves up. Perfectionists do things that sabatoge their sense of worth and well-being in huge gestures that relieve guilt or that attempt to achieve acceptance/love.

It doesn't have to be "all or nothing". All we can do is do our best. If people don't love and cherish us for our hearts and our loving gestures, they are toxic and shouldn't be part of our lives. One of my favorite books (in my self-help days) is called "Toxic Parents". It is not reserved just for families and most times helps with the spectrum of relationships in our "spheres". When you add "perfectionism" to a "toxic" relationship our spiritual self tends to morph into an equal opportunity punching bag.

I think our biggest/worst "toxic" relationship is with our "perfect" alter-ego. I became friendly with a fellow adoptee who was in such a toxic family situation that his parents convinced him that he was nothing and that he should die. So one day, he laid in their yard for hours just willing himself to die. How heartbreaking is that!! I nearly cried myself silly when I listened to that.

We need to make friends with that alter-ego so that it doesn't resemble toxic people in our lives and have it fight on our behalf. We need to subdue that inner "perfect" alter-ego and have it admit that even "it" can't be perfect.

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