Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

I am very ready to ring in 2009! Tonight we are going to order pizza, play board games and stay at home. Usually I attend an annual party that a friend of mine has, but it just doesn't feel right to leave my mom and Paige tonight. Besides, I cannot imagine two more amazing people to ring in the new year with.

I received a phone call yesterday (during my mani and pedi spa day with my girlfriends : ), to meet my mom and Paige at the eye doctor. It seems that Paige has some cloudiness on her cornea and they referred us to Vanderbilt Childrens Hospital for some follow up. I have done research for the past 4 hours as to what it can be and have come to the conclusion that I am going to have to wait to see what the doctor says. Please say a prayer that it isn't anything serious. The eye doc. said she thought it might be congenital, but I find it odd that we've never noticed this cloud over her eye before. Anyway, she will be in great hands at Vanderbilt. She is just disappointed because her vision screening turned out awful : ( She is definitely going to have to wear glasses ... and per the docs words... "wear them all of the time". She was bummed, but I assured her that we could find her some stylish glasses and that seemed to pacify her.

Anyway, I sure have appreciated all of your friendship this past year and don't know how I could have gotten through so many things without you! Thanks for making 2008 a fun year to blog and I look forward to keeping old friendships and maybe even making new ones in 2009. I also look forward to the several "in real life" meetings that I have planned with some of you this year : )

Happy New Year to you and yours!!!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Our Christmas

Paige finished up dancing in the Nutcracker on the 21st, so we had a few days of relaxation prior to Christmas. On Christmas eve we went over to some of our friend's house. The kids played and got lots of energy out, the women snacked on appetizers and drank a little wine, and the men...well, they just tolerated us all : )

Olivia, Paige and Caroline on Christmas eve

Christmas morning was SO nice...honestly, probably one of THE most relaxing we have ever had. I dreaded Christmas, as I thought I would be so sad, but surprisingly enough I was at peace. I knew that the day was about celebrating all of our blessings and I have so many that I cannot even begin to count them all. Paige received an abundant amount of toys from Santa...she must have been an especially good girl this year : ) Pictured below is Paige with her two American Girl dolls. She received a doctor's kit for them and has been playing hospital tons. We also have been rockin' out to Rock Band for the Wii and have been playing a lot of Mariokart!
On Christmas night, my brother's girlfriend and my mom came up with a big surprise for my brother. My brother is an E.X.A. with Walgreens and they always have to work either Christmas eve or Christmas day. Greg had to work on Christmas day. He was SO bummed. We drove out to his place and met his girlfriend. We all parked our cars where he couldn't see them. We decorated his apartment with some festive lights and stockings (he lives with a fraternity brother...two guys equal no decorations : ), we cooked him dinner and when he walked in yelled, "Surprise". The look on his face was priceless. Prior to him coming in the door, he had text messaged me (while driving...I don't advise this), that he was so sad that he couldn't be with us on Christmas. It was really a great night...very small and intimate and I think it was just perfect. Here we are on Christmas night.
This is a picture of Greg, Laurie and Paige. Aren't Greg and Laurie precious? They have been dating for two years now and we are just crazy about her. Paige just adores her.
I haven't really felt much like blogging, as I have been having so much fun hanging out with my family. I never realized how much I enjoy hanging out and living in the moment. I always have that darn camera attached at my hip and I feel like sometimes I live my life while looking through a lens. While I adore taking pics and have no intentions of stopping, I do intend to live life more fully and in the moment. We'll see how long that resolution lasts : ) What do you guys give me, say...a week ??? : )
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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Prayer request

I have an urgent prayer request. A sweet, sweet bloggy buddy needs your prayers. I am not going to say right now who it is, because I don't have permission, but needless to say, the situation could be very serious.

PLEASE say an extra special prayer for "C" and her family. PLEASE!

I'll update on our Christmas when I come up for air, as we have been busy, busy, busy!!!

Keep "C" in your prayers! Thank you so much!!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Last night I was greatly reminded of the sacrifice God made so that we could have eternal life. I can't imagine ever being so selfless. We went to see the Rockettes and the Nativity Scene was the BEST I have ever seen. I cried and cried throughout the entire thing, because I cannot believe what a blessing has been bestowed to us.
Happy Birthday Jesus!
Merry Christmas to all of my precious blogger friends!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

8 years ago today...

Happy Forever Family Day Sweet Guo Changchun


You are our dream come true!

On this day, eight years ago, you were carried into a hotel unaware of how your world was about to change. You were fast asleep, safe and sound in your loving foster mom's arms. You felt secure and loved. You might not have had all of the worldly "goods" that most 2.4 year olds had, but you were well cared for and happy.

On this day, at 3:15 pm in Changchun, Jilin province of the PRC at the Noble Hotel, your little world was turned upside down. You woke up and had two very unfamiliar people in your face. Mom and I were crying and happy and shaking and so excited and completely overwhelmed. You were so confused and scared. You clung to your foster mommy and had a grip on her sweater that was something fierce.

Your foster mommy whispered something to you and cried as she stroked your cheek and your hair. You listened so intently and looked her deep in her eyes. You were so very brave.

As one mommy walked away, another one stepped in. Mom was so in love with you, Paige, from the minute she saw you. She held you and sang to you and told you that it would be ok as you cried and cried for your ma ma ma ma. She stroked your cheek and your hair just like your foster mommy did. You didn't like it, but who could blame you.

I was so in love with you...instantaneously. I had never seen such beauty before. You took my breath away. You were perfect. I looked at your little hands and your cute little ears and your perfect button nose and KNEW that I would never be the would never be the same.

In the eight years that you have been in our family, you have brought more joy to us than you could ever imagine. You are the absolute light of our lives. Mom and I were smitten kittens from day one and are still your biggest fans. We love you, just the way you are. You are so kind and caring and funny and smart and talented and creative and curious and sassy and independent and I could go on and on.

Dada loved you more than you will ever know. The moment we walked off the plane and I handed you to him, he lit up in a way that I had NEVER seen him do before. He pat your back and laughed and showed you off to all of the people who came to greet you. It was as if you were his very own show and tell : ) You two have always been such special buddies. I know that today he is looking down on you and smiling from the Heavens and is so proud of the young lady you are becoming. He will always be with you and protect you.

You are loved so much, Paige. We couldn't be any more proud of you. You have blessed us in ways that I cannot even begin to describe. I hope the next 8 years together are as special and rich as the past 8 have been. I love you to the moon and back my sweet sissy!

Friday, December 19, 2008


Yes! Sissy was able to come back stage and take photos of me getting ready for the Nutcracker. Can you say SWEET???

Here is my sign on my mirror, my mouse hat, the baby mice uniforms and the cavalier wigs!
props collage

I have really done a good job at applying make up. I even told my sissy that I can't wait to be old enough to wear it to school. Sissy said, "Uh, not for a LONG time".
I like to check myself out in the dressing room. I think I did a pretty good job with my make up tonight. My mom and sister think I am awfully cute.
This is my good friend, Katie Belle. She is a baby mouse, too. She is a lot of fun.
Here is Katie Belle and I just minutes before we put on our very heavy and hot hats. 10 minutes til curtain.
My sister sure does take a lot of pictures.
Here is my outfit, minus my hat. My friend, Joseph, is standing on the chair acting WILD. My mom and sister say that he is hard to handle. I think he is funny!
Do you like my ears? WHAT??? I have big ears, but I still can't hear you : )
These are my baby mice friends. We just performed and we ROCKED! I was excited tonight, because my teacher and her husband came to see me. I love her. My friends names are Rebecca, Katie Belle, Me and Ana Claire. They are so much FUN!
I have been having a lot of fun playing a baby mouse in the Nutcracker. My sissy and mommy say that I am a cute mouse. I was really excited because last night we performed a "Holiday Magic Show" and it was for unfortunate orphans. My mommy asked me who brought the orphans and I told her it was the orphan keeper. She and my sissy giggled at me, but I don't know what is so funny??? I was very touched to be able to make sweet kids who don't have a family for Christmas laugh and have a good holiday treat. My mom and sissy said they were sorry for giggling at me and told me how proud they were of me. I am having fun!
Have a "Mice"...I mean, Nice weekend!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Question of the day

So Paige and I are blog hopping and surf on over to Kim's blog at 3 peanuts. Kim posts a lovely tribute to her Jewish friends, wishing them a Happy Hanukah.

Paige is looking at the photos and says, "If they are celebrating Hanukah, are they Hanukins?"


I need to get better at teaching Paige the proper terminology in life!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Quick update

My little mouse was wonderful last night!!! She was so dramatic and gave the audience a huge laugh as she shook her little mouse bottom : ) The set, costumes and choreography were out of this world. It far exceeded our expectations.

A funny side note: So, I knew taking pictures and video was strictly prohibited in the performance hall, but thought I'd sneak in my camera and take a few while no one was watching. I was SO proud of myself, because I turned off my flash and took TONS of great shots...they weren't blurry at all (usually I cannot shoot well with the flash off as the pics are always so blurry and you can't make out what it is).

Sooo, after the show we are getting up from our seats and I am proudly boasting to my mom and brother and his girlfriend how I got some amazing shots and we would blow them up and put them in her room, when all of a sudden, I hear "M'am, I need you to step over here". CRUD! I was cold busted! This lady, who could have been a prison warden by her demeanor and her gruff voice, stood over me and said firmly, "DELETE the pictures". I was so embarrassed. I wanted to beg her to keep just one, but she lectured me about how there was no photography or video at all at any TPAC event and that they shared that numerous times and how I could have had my camera confiscated.

Geesh, by the time I was finished deleting my pics I was nearly in tears and felt like a common criminal.

I have a plan, though! We are watching her performance on the 21st and I think I am going to try it one more time...hee hee! I am going to take two picture cards. I will take pics of Paige on one card and then replace the card and take some more on another card and delete those if I must.

I know, I know, I should not break the rules, but you see, I am not hurting anyone, right? Please tell me that I am not a bad person for wanting to have some sort of documentation of this big event in her life.

Ok, so maybe I am feeling a little guilty...

ok, FINE...I won't do it!

: )

Saturday, December 13, 2008

It's the big day!

It's here! We are all SO excited. Do you think we got any sleep last night???? Well, my mom and the cats did : )

Let me explain why this is SUCH a big deal to Paige and I. You see, while we were waiting on her referral, I had visions of the things that I would do with my new little sister...I never had a sister before and I had a laundry list the size of, well, the Great Wall : ) On the top of that list was to get dressed up, go to the Nutcracker, get there early and let her pick out her favorite ornament and a Nutcracker doll for me to purchase, eat cookies and drink milk and then go watch the show.

Ok, so I am a romantic at heart, what can I say?

So, lil' miss P. joins our family and the first year home I proudly purchase tickets and off we go. While the first year didn't go quite as I had planned (she fell asleep before intermission, but hey, she was only 3), it was still a magical evening for me. I remember crying when I saw the dance of the sugar plum fairies....thinking how wonderful it was that Paige could actually be in a family that adored her and how blessed we were to have her to adore.

In the years to come, the tradition of the Nutcracker always held up to what I had envisioned. We have a TON of ballerina ornaments and overpriced Nutcrackers to prove it. : )

This will be our 8th year to go and see the Nutcracker. I can't believe the teeny tiny little girl who was curled up in a seat next to me when she was three years old, is now a big, beautiful, poised little dancer who is following her dreams.

I love you Paige! You are my world and I couldn't be prouder of you!!!

Break a leg!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Snow day equals lazy day

I was so excited last night to find out that my school system and Paige's was out today due to the snow. I was on the phone with one of my favorite blogger buddies : ) and Paige came in and started pointing to the TV with a look of pure delight. Do you remember being a little kid and wishing and hoping for a snow day? Well, your teachers were equally as excited, as I think I was more overjoyed than Paige.

We all slept in today and it was just great! Paige decided after a little bit of playtime on the computer ( this kid loves Club Penguin ), we both snuggled up with a good book and read. I realize that doesn't sound too exciting for some, probably just downright boring, but for me and my girl it was pure Heaven. I am reading Twighlight and she is on the 6th Harry Potter book. She is just so smart. I love that she has her sister's love of reading. I'll never forget her first grade teacher writing on one of her report card comments, "Paige is a READING MACHINE". To this day, when I tell Paige how I love that she is such a wonderful reader, she will respond with, "A reading machine, I am" : )

I hope you all have had a great day!

Keep my baby mouse in your thoughts as she debuts tomorrow evening at 7pm. She has a gaggle of fans coming to support her and that makes her terribly nervous. I am SO sad that I won't be getting any pictures, as flash photography is not allowed in the performance hall : ( Also, I thought we could take pictures on the night that we chaperone backstage, but we have to leave our cameras in the security area. I was told that we can take cell phones back there, so I will snap a few on my cell. (Lisa, we found was in her dance bag ... whew!!!)

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Hi from Paige

hi my sister's readers .
I have been sick for days and now my sister made my sicker by singing and making me laugh and my stomach hurts EVEN MORE thanks sis.well im very happy because my first nutcracker proformance is this SATURDAY yay!!!!!Have a holly jolly christmas and a cool day .
HO HO HO merry christmas love paigey.
my cat says hi meow meow my sis here is playing with sambo hmmphh.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Get Ready Dance

Ok, Michelle, this is for you : ) I got your hints..LOL!

This was from last year's dance recital. Paige was second from the right in the green outfit. Tap isn't her favorite...hip hop and ballet are. This is not her best dance, but all I have on video. Enjoy : )

Sunday, December 7, 2008

I just love this mouse!

I am trying to play with natural lighting and some new actions that I got for photoshop. This was the first shot that I got and I loved it. I just love this girl!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A little sneak peek

Paige had rehearsals today at the Performing Arts Center. I didn't go, as I have spent the past week SO sick : ( First I had a killer sinus infection, then last night I had a bout of Montezuma's revenge. Something is going around at our school and I couldn't keep anything down for hours.

Keep Paige in your prayers, as she is suffering from stage fright. She normally does so well in front of a crowd, as she has been dancing in recitals for years. This production is on such a larger scale and she is freaking out. They were told today that shows are nearing selling out. The seating capacity is close to 2500 people. Yikes!

This is a little synopsis of the making of the new production.

There is also a sneak peak at:

We are SO excited!!!