28 September 2007

singin' and dancin' in the rain

dum dee dum dum, dum dee, dum dee dum dum....

There is something freeing about playing in the rain. It started coming down the other night and I asked Piper if she would like to get her umbrella and play outside. Without a second thought she bolted upstairs and grabbed her buzzy bee rainboots and rushed down the stairs faster than I have ever seen...she had those wellies on faster than I could say 'gumboots'! She grabbed her Ladybug brolly and hit the sidewalk...10 minutes of pure splashing fun! I even took her down to the cul de sac to splash in the puddles. You'd have thought I'd taken her to Disneyworld the way she looked up at me. Gotta love this kid, she's amazing!

Introducing Princess Ouchie-boo-boo-la

A classic case of pre-school el-chin-o meets el-pavement-o! Thank goodness class pictures aren't for a few weeks! Piper wanted to make sure everyone got to see her very special blue bandaid! Can ya see it...did I get a good enough close up??
While at Target this evening, we picked up some Hello Kitty ones that Piper spotted as we blew past the ouchie aisle. If they had Charlie & Lola bandaids we'd be a hypochodriacs dream!

27 September 2007

A wild rumpus and a sweet request

The other night we were driving home from our interesting moon festival activities when we heard Piper in the back seat exclaim "oh no Mummy, oh no Daddy!" I turned around and asked her what was wrong, she replied very softly "oh no Mummy, we need to turn around and go back to the bookstore..." We'd visited one of the neatest bookstores on the weekend so we thought she wanted to go back to see the chicken and cats (we'll explain more later)...

I said "oh Honey, it's too late to go to the bookstore, but maybe we can go on the weekend"

She got very quiet and started sniffing..."but Mummy, we NEED to get some books for Paisley, she doesn't have any...and that's so sad"..."sniff"

She was truly upset that Paisley is alone in China and without books. We had a nice talk about how Paisley is probably in an orphanage or maybe in foster care and that as soon as we know where she is that we will send her some very special books.

Piper sleeps with at least 3 books each night. Her favorites are Charlie & Lola, Fancy Nancy and her Children's Bible. This morning when I went in to wake her she was sleeping with her Bible on her chest...she opened her eyes and said "Mummy, I have a Bible seat belt!" too cute!

26 September 2007

UPDATE!! Joey has a family! What wonderful news! When we all put this kind of information on our blogs it helps get the word out and it just might ignite a fire in someones heart. Great news for Joey!!!

The 'un-chosen' ones - now chosen

This is Joey, he is in desperate need to find a forever family before his file gets sent back to China. His only SN is that he has burns. Please read more about Joey, and spread the word to everyone you know. Currently the agency that has his file is offering a grant to cover some of the adoption expenses, many people in the adoption community are rallying together to send in $10 or $20 to boost the grant available. Every penny counts! Whats $10, a couple of lattes? Many families would love to adopt, but the financial impact of finding the funds to complete an adoption are often overwhelming, they have enough money to 'raise' a child but often it is the cost associated with the actual process that holds them back...if we all pitch in we can make a difference.

read Joy's story here

How to help Joey

By check:

You can send a check to Small World
Attach a note that this money is to go toward "Joey's" Adoption
Send to: Small World
9201 S. Madison Road
Valleyford , WA 99036

By Credit Card:

Go here
Click on: Piety Fund-Give online now

my thanks to Stefanie, her initial post and links to Joey has not only inspired me to post this, but many other adoption bloggers have followed suit.

25 September 2007

Chinese Moon Festival - 'abridged version'

Well okay, we tried. First off I decided to find mooncakes, so I drove 40 minutes to an Asian food store that was 'sold out', no problem, I picked up a few things that we can't find in our regular store, so the trip wasn't entirely for naught. If you are a Kiwi or an Aussie...I found MILO!!!! Can you believe it!

Then we decided we'd make our version of moon cookies...our neighbour Kristine makes these disgustingly delicious thumbprint cookies with a Reeses peanut butter mini in the middle...I know, it's awful, but it's delicious, so I asked how to make them...easy enough but I didn't want to have to buy a mini muffin pan just to make them so I scrapped the idea entirely!

We decided to eat Chinese food then go to Caribou coffee and have a 'moon fluffy'...okay, that's lame, but we were looking for ANYTHING moon-like to emphasize that we hadn't forgotten! Piper was pretty stoked to have not only a fluffy (kids cocoa) but that she got to have a chocolate covered pretzel too! Sorry mooncakes, chocolate wins over lotus paste!

It's pretty cloudy in Minneapolis today, we spotted the moon for a mere 2 seconds before it retreated behind it's cloud cover...maybe next year!

We did read 'round is a mooncake' and 'Papa, please get the moon for me'...that'll just have to do it. Next year we'll try harder!

24 September 2007

confide my love to the moon and sky

Tomorrow is the Chinese Moon Festival. This will be our first time celebrating and Piper will get to stay up a little later than normal to participate. We didn't manage to get any moon cakes this year, but we will make our own version of harvest moon cookies. Basically they are thumbprints with apricot or blackberry jam...yummo! Next year we'll branch out and try lotus or red bean paste(em...I can't wait).

We ordered a few more 'moon' inspired books to read and have picked out some moon songs to sing. Funnily enough Piper has been singing one of her favorites, 'rocket ship' by Justin Roberts and from that we got the title to our post. She is hilarious, I had to let her know that it's "confide my love to the moon & sky" not "confine my Mum to the moon & sky"...I think she prefers it HER way!

We'll post some photos from our night beneath the stars.

23 September 2007

"By God Mr Dyson, you've done it again!"

The truth is, I love Mr Dyson...it's sad I know, but here is a man after my own heart! I have to admit I don't actually own one, I've been waiting for our trusty Kenmore to blow up but it refuses to! In my fervent obsession for vacuum perfection I even had my sister Tracey send a mini version of the Dyson from New Zealand last year for Piper!! I've loved these vacuums since I had one back in London all those years ago. Now Dyson has released a PINK vacuum in awareness for Breast Cancer month, they are available at Target and $40 from the sale of each one goes directly to Breast Cancer research. Now that's good enough reason to link on this....dyson giveaway!

My best friend Tara always told me I had a thing for 'bookish' guys...that's why Mr Dyson is one of my cult hero's, not just for making a vacuum cleaner, but for making a piece of art that works as a vacuum cleaner...why else would his designs be in a Museum! As for my love of bookish guys...I guess it's true, nothing like a book lovin' Engineer to rattle your cage!

Do you like the new look? We are tweaking it here and there but I think it's looking pretty neat! I found Danielle our blog fairy through NiHao y'all she has done a wonderful wonderful job and I'm looking foward to hearing what everyone thinks!

It was so hard to choose a template style, but I looked at all the digi-scrapbooking sites and found quite a few! I narrowed it down to about 4-5 and Mike helped me pick this one. Quite honestly this is the cheapest and prettiest facelift I could have hoped for!

so welcome...should we crack open a bottle of bubbles?

22 September 2007

"oh what a lovely Yaguar darhling"

"you lookin at me?"

Here are a few photos I took at the Victoria Volksfest this morning. Many more did not survive because of our camera bloblemo...sad really, I was having so much fun! There were some fab old cars, my Dad would have loved it, being a classic car aficionado!

hot roddin

uh oh...problemo

our camera has a problem...a few days ago a blob turned up on our photos...I've done my best to edit it out but it's loud and it's proud and it's INSIDE the camera! Today Mike called Canon, they have sent him to Target to buy a nasal aspirator (must be new) and given him instructions to see if he can use the clean program and dislodge the blob...if not, the camera will go back to Canon and they will remove it. It's under warranty, but who knows if this is covered?

So...my pictures will be few for the next 10-15 days. bummer.

I should have known trouble was a brewin' by this face.

time out pouting in my pink chair

"what Mummy, I can't hear you, what do you want?...Oh you want me to behave?...that's not possible because I can't hear you"

look closely...this sums up Piper's attitude this morning. It resulted in no swimming lessons, time out and some fairly stern parent/child discussions....our little moonbeam is being a grad A 'cyclone spoiler' today...is it time for nap yet?

21 September 2007


(image from yahoo...I did not take the snow one...I did however take the one below!)

I have a new favorite photo blog...it is the 'minneapolis daily photo' blog in my links. It is AMAZING! To be honest, this photo is not from the blog, I wouldnt take one without asking, but the images are so incredibly beautiful it will make you see exactly where the jewel of the Midwest really is...and if you thought it was all lutfish and soccer moms you'd be wrong. Minneapolis is a really groovy city...sure I get tired of it and long for the salt scented days of beach life in New Zealand, but if we have to live somewhere in this HUGE country, this place isn't too shabby!

20 September 2007

OK Go - Here It Goes Again

Just in case you need a pick me up!

19 September 2007

'Blue Jeans Blues'

Well, I won't even 'touch' on my inability to find a pair that fits my ever expanding bottom,...butt(I couldnt resist) this week I have been on a mission to find a pair for Miss Piper. First off I hit the local consignment stores, I've nabbed a few bargains from the re-sale store 'Once upon a Child' in the past, so I thought I might get lucky this time too. Sadly the Jean Gods were not on my side so I entered the realm of evil...the dreaded mall...

...I started at Gap, wow, they have some cute stuff, but I NEVER buy anything retail, so paying $39.50 for a pair of 2T jeans was not going to happen! Then I hit Old Navy, I figured they would have a few pairs to choose from as well but at a better price...

...We tried on eight pairs of jeans and not one single pair fit and there was a serious possiblity that she would be recruited for MC Hammer's comeback group if you get my drift! The problem is the rise, the point from the crotch to the waistband...EVERY single pair had about 3-4" too much in the rise, they are made this way to accomodate diapers! But...what if your kid doesnt wear diapers? Are you supposed to let them waddle like a penguin? We picked up one pair on sale, just in case we couldnt find a better pair elsewhere.

After some thought and a discussion with some other China-Mums, I went back on my safari this afternoon. We hit Sears, Target and Kohls in search of Levis. I found ONE solitary pair that will just have to do! They aren't perfect, but hopefully they will be comfy enough to run and jump and not look like a skaterboy ratbag! At $12.50 0n sale, I think I got a bargain, they do have sparkles all over them which will be interesting...but at least I didn't cough up $106 for them like the ones in the picture! WHO pays $106 for a two year olds jeans??? If you do...please feel free to notify me of your garage sales in the future!

The pair that won...but only because there was no other choice

I'm regretting this pair already...I think they will go back to Old Navy

See what I mean...the crotch is 4" to low!


We went to a different 'once upon a child' a few dys ago and found these...I guess that 'guess' is the way to go for miss P! Much better! They were $14 pre-loved but boy they fit much much better! I wonder how much they are new?

17 September 2007

Guess whats coming soon?

Nickleodeon is about to release a new show about a 5 year old girl called KaiLan. We are looking foward to it with anticipation! Piper has never really got into Dora, although she likes some of the toys, the show has always freaked her out, for one she YELLS everything and is incredibly bossy...hmmm, perhaps it's because Piper is too much like her??? I digress, anyway 'NiHao KaiLan' is coming to the small screen sometime in the Fall and I am pretty sure we will enjoy it!

The voice of KaiLan is a little girl who was adopted from China. How sweet!

Holy Holy Holy


On Sunday morning Mike and I heard Piper singing one of her favorite songs as we opened her door to wish her good morning..we weren't quite prepared for the sight that greeted us...but it made us laugh.

Piper was sitting up in bed reading her little bible in the dark, the page was turned to Jonah and the Whale, she was belting out "Willie was a Whale, he walked on the water...." but the clincher was the fact that she was....um....completely and utterly 'sans' pyjamas???!!!

quite a sight!

Minneapolis Orchestra in the Park

On Sunday we went to Lake Harriet to listen to the Minneapolis Orchestra. I just love the FREE concerts in the bandshell. It is such a wonderful setting and so peaceful. The music was great, the weather was awesome and we enjoyed a little picnic of cheese, crackers, apples and dried fruit.

Piper chilled on the blanket while the band played.

Even Olive enjoyed the afternoon! There must have been several thousand people and several hundred doggy friends there but there was loads of space to put out a blanket and relax. We chose a spot further back, under the shade trees.

After the concert Piper got to play on the jungle gym, we even ran into the family that hosted one of the FCC bbq's a few weeks back. As large as Minneapolis is, we always seem to run into people we know. So, much fun was had!

I'm pretty sure this party will suck!

On Saturday we went to a work bbq held at Mike's boss's house. Piper was not very impressed when we told her she was going to a party but there wouldn't be any balloons! My child is a sceptic...I know her little cranium cogs were spinning on high gear...'hmmm no ballooons means no fun'

Well...when we got there her attitude shifted...there were a tonne of other kids to play with, and a SWINGSET! One of the other kids taught her how to run and jump on the swing on her tummy...this was deemed the most superior of all games, far out ranking the 'throw the bocce ball down the stairs game'

As you can see, Piper learnt some other valuable kid games...monster faces was also a HUGE hit!

As people gathered around the fire pit, the children went out on 'stick hunts', Piper gladly tagged along and was able to scrounge up a handful of twigs from under one of the neighbors trees.

Mike's boss Pat helped her throw them into the fire while I stood back hyperventilating about all the possible burn scenarios and the realization that I am an uber-protective Mummy, I glanced at Mike, he seemed to be breathing heavier than normal too....so it's not just me, notice the finger on the back of Piper's cardigan...he's not letting her get too close! Piper's new found fascination with fire is one every parent is ultimately overjoyed about.

Daddy's protective finger

12 September 2007

the beginning of summer

the end of summer

the temparature dropped to 39 degrees last night, pretty much a sign that summer is on it's way out. I took the top picture of Piper on her bike in late Spring and the bottom one today. I think she's grown considerably over the summer, even though she is wearing the same pants. Today was the first day she needed to wear a long sleeved shirt. The shadows are growing longer, soon the bike will get stored away.

the day the bubbles died

Remember what fun it used to be to pop the bubbles on the sheets of plastic packaging? Piper loved doing it...until today. She pushed, she poked, she jumped on them, and yet not a single one popped? Apparently some genius that doesn't have kids decided to design packaging that has air chambers, when you apply pressure, which in the past would result in a large 'pop', now results in a 'hiss', and no small amount of toddler angst.

I normallly wouldn't let Piper do this....but I felt her pain.


cheeky monkey in hello kitty

I found this t shirt on the 75% off rack at Target...it's an xs for ages 4/5. Um, how tight are kids supposed to wear their shirts? I think it's snug on a 2.5 year old, but for 2.48 can I complain? Nope.

A baby for my baby

This is the first time I have been able to take a photo of Piper with a DOLL! She usually avoids them so I was pleasantly surprised to see her taking such good care of hers on Sunday. Maybe my little girl will like girly dolls someday? I know she likes cars and trains, but it's nice she can play with 'nurturing' toys too.

I have seen a shift in recent months, Piper is starting to allow other toys and animals into her crib, for the past 23 months it has been her stuffed dog Ollie and only Ollie. Now she is sleeping with Peggy her Asian doll, Charlie Bear her teddy and 'purple teddy'...her purple teddy. It's interesting how quickly she changed her mind. Just for good measure she also has been sleeping with her Captain Feathersword talking sword....sometimes at night I hear a muffled "ahoy there mateys", I don't know if she is awake and pushing buttons or if she just rolled over on it!

11 September 2007

In memory of those who lost their lives and loved ones

We will all remember this day in our lives, what we were doing, how our hearts stopped when we saw what was happening in NYC, Washington DC, a field in Pennsylvania. It shattered the thin veneer of our idyllic lives, the USA was a target of terrorism on our own soil, and at the HEART of this country.

The days and weeks that followed blended into a blur of stories, losses, near misses. Stories of survival and faith, stories of faith and loss.

The lights were comforting to me, perhaps because they pointed to Heaven.

09 September 2007

Love Without Boundaries Foundation

For the first time in the history of Love without Boundaries, they have had to turn away a child needing life saving heart surgery. Please consider a small donation to this wonderful non profit. One of the reasons Piper came into our family as healthy as she was is because of the nutrition program put in place at her orphanage by the wonderful people at LWB. Even $5 will make a huge difference!

I am calling all other adoption bloggers to post this video and a link to Love without Boundaries in hope that we can drum up donations, so no more children will be turned away.

08 September 2007

Movie & Book of the week


Mike & I watched this movie tonight. I don't care if you are an Republican, Democrat or Independent...this movie speaks in volumes about WAR and why we fight. Rent it. Watch it. Buy it.

A Mother's Ordeal

This book has had the most impact on me as a Mother in a LONG time! A true story of one family and the impact of China's one child policy. This book is not for the faint of heart. It's callous and barbaric at times but filled with such emotion and suppression of emotion that it will take your breath away, and break your heart at the same time.

I think I'm going to do this book & movie of the week or month thing from now on...my library is growing, thanks to half.com and ebay. Netflix is my movie delivery system of choice...so now friends, I begin my foray into the world of book and movie recommendations.


Kids lurve this guy and I have to admit there's one or two Mummy's that are enamored with this talented 'rockstar for toddlers' as well! This afternoon we hit the Target Book Fair in Bloomington. Of course we went for the exposure to art and literature...well, we kinda sorta went for that but what we REALLY went for, or more precisely WHO we went for is the big Daddy of toddler rock - 'JR' Mr Justin Roberts! He was part of the festival and played at the park for FREE! Too cool, Piper almost peed her pants in excitement...um, okay I almost peed my pants in excitement, but who's counting! Although we didn't get to the signing earlier in the day, we got to sit and dance near the stage! Rock on JR...rock on.

Piper wore the tshirt her friend Jenna sent her, Justin spotted it from the stage and gave her a big smile! Mike also enjoyed the show, and sung along...seems there were a bunch of hip Mums and Dads doing the same! If you don't know who he is, check him out...his music is fun and groovy enough that parents wont want to gouge their eyes out with blunt teaspoons!

"OMG..is that who I think it is?"

"Mummy, look who it is! Did you know he was going to be here!?"


It's all about making the kiddo happy!