Happy Chinese New Year

Monday was China's New Year.

Spring Festival- as it is sometimes referred to.
This year- is the year of the Ox.

Last year we had a celebration of the New Year at Rick and Jennifer's. Unknown to us, Little Missy (Malia) was only a little over a month old. This year I had a deeper appreciation for the Chinese people and a better understanding of the 'people' of China. I don't mean the people of the government. I mean the everyday people who struggle to make a living, feed and clothe their families, to try and provide a better tomorrow for their children. Their way of living is much different than ours. They hold onto ancient beliefs and tradition. It has been passed down from generation to generation.
Rick stopped by our house this week. We were talking about China. Nanchang in particular. I miss Nanchang. It was probably my favorite place that we visited. Not only because of the connection that it represented for Malia, but also for the people and their ways of living. It is not as modernized as other cities. Even though I got really really tired of eating their food, I miss it too.

I miss the families that became a part of our family for 18 days.

I miss that loud- continually honking- no rules traffic- that went day and night intertwined with the firecrackers continuous popping

I miss watching the people of Nanchang in their everyday lives

I miss that laundry that Peggy and I were so amused at watching daily. I miss looking out of our hotel window at the millions of people-trying to live amongst such poverty
I miss the excitement we shared with our new family of friends on Gotcha Day
I miss watching our son and daughter-in-law as they progressed through the endless chore of paperwork
I miss seeing the sites and history of the area where Malia was born and her China family lives

I miss watching our new friends interact with the newest members of their families.

Mommy and Miss Malia

I miss the fun and the 'trouble' the grandmas got into, and my favorite roomie!

Hopefully some day I will be able to return to Nanchang. If not, then I hope Malia and her family will return and enjoy it with me and Peggy in mind. It was a much appreciated experience that will forever be in a corner of my heart. I thank Rick, Jennifer and Spencer for allowing me and my room buddy to accompany them to meet a little girl that will always be loved and treasured in our hearts.

Happy Chinese New Year....


Silent Movies and Frozen Fish

There are more highways that criss cross in Indiana than in any other state. Indiana contains more Interstate high-ways per square mile than any of the other states. That may be why our State Motto is 'The Crossroads of America" Indiana is in the top 10 states with Drive In Theaters. Back in the late '50's hey day of the Drive In Theaters, Indiana had 120 of them. Over time a large majority of them have gone dark and no longer exist. Indiana has 23 that are still in existence. Wabash is home to the 13-24 Drive In Theater. On our way to North Manchester this morning, we passed the Drive In. I remember when it was the 'cool' thing to do. Load a bunch of kids into cars and head to the drive in. Not that we watched the movies that much. It was more important to see and be seen. Today as we drove by, the theater was silent. Not because of no one being interested in attending, but because of the season of the year. Snow covered the ground, the speakers and the swing set. It may be silent for now, but come spring it will be popping with people eager to watch the current big hit movies again.
Now... I am not a huge fan of fishing. I don't understand sitting and sitting, waiting on some dang fish to try and eat the bait on the end of the 'stick'. I know... I know.... there are people that luuuvvvv to fish. I see them at the reservoirs and sitting along the rivers in our area. My mom and dad like to fish. All the family love to eat the fish they catch. But...for most of those fishing people, they fish in weather that 'I' consider appropriate. Well....not the people we saw this morning. I have seen Ice Fishermen in movies. This was the first time I had actually seen people huddled into a tent of some sort, after they have drilled a hole in the ice, fishing. I hope they are dressed warmly. It was very cold this morning. These people are really dedicated fishermen. I hope they caught some fish.


First the birthday, then the party

We celebrated Luke's 4th birthday Saturday. I can't believe he is 4 already! He had a very good time. Lots of kids to play with, cake and ice cream and lots of gifts. All in all he had a very good birthday party. Happy birthday Buddy.

Gma and Pawpaw love you very much

Looks like Luke and Mom are surprised with this gift

Luke likes this one

Mom wants to know who gave you the dishes when you have all the boy toys sitting here?

Hmmmm.... I thought I got one of those already !

Blowing out the candle

Malia checkin out Luke's new birthday toy

Happy Birthday Little Buddy !


Oh Baby..... It's cold outside !

This morning when we woke up, it was -16. Brrrrrrrrrr that is cold. I am not sure if it was a record low for this area. I do know I was glad the furnace was working like it was supposed to.

This morning, the brave little birdies and Wilbur and Wilma were at the feeders. I noticed the birds had extra feathers. They are so much fun to watch at the feeders. Keep warm little birdies. You too Wilbur and Wilma (the squirrels).


Happy Birthday to 'The Duke of Luke"

January 14th was Luke's 4th birthday. Hoping he had a great birthday. He sure is growing up fast. Wish they could stay little for just a while longer, but that just doesnt happen. Papa and Gma certainly do enjoy this little man.
From his first hair cut......

To his visit at Papa and Gma house the other day.....

We wish you the Happiest of Birthdays

Happy Birthday Luke

We love you very much.


Oh..what a beautiful baby !

Stephanie Ann

I saw her first name on a Miss Teen America program. I fell in love with the name immediately. We were at some friends of ours playing cards one evening, and it came to me that Ann was just what I had been looking for, for a middle name. She was a beauty from the moment she was born.

When Stephanie decided to enter the world, she didn't waste any time. From the time my labor pains started until the time she was born, it was a total of 3 hours. Tom had just gotten in bed, when I told him we need to get to the hospital. We had no time to spare. There was a lot of snow on the ground, and we had to stop by Mom and Dad's to drop Amanda off. We stopped at the corner of Walnut and East Street and I told Tom he had better get us to the hospital NOW! This baby was wasting any time. When we got to the hospital, it was time to get into the delivery room, we had no time for the labor room. We had a baby ready to make her grand entrance. Stephanie was the only one of the three babies that we had that I was able to watch be born via a mirror they positioned for me to see. She was a beautiful baby from the moment I saw her. I had always wanted 2 girls. My wish was granted. I knew what fun it was to have sisters. If we had 2 girls, they could play and enjoy growing up like we did. I had such fun dressing Stephanie up and taking pictures like I had done before. She had a perfect shaped face. We loved her so much.

She had beautiful eyes. She could say lots with those eyes. Yes... she was a doll baby.

Looks like someone is a little mad and pouting !

Stephanie in the lawn chair, is my favorite picture of her
I loved sitting and watching her sleep.

A funny girl with the spoon in her mouth. She would put it in her mouth and keep it like that.

Time doesn't allow children to stay little. They grow up and mature.

Stephanie with that cat she just had to have! Who would know that she would be part of our family for 12 years. Miss Liberty

Most girls have good role models as they age.......... Stephanie was the one that went shopping with Mom on Fridays. Special time together....cherished time.

It is always difficult to let go and watch your children enter the real world. But then you realize that they don't leave, they add and add to your life. We wouldn't want it any other way.
I always tell our kids that you will know the love we have for you, when you have children of your own. They are more precious than all the gold and jewels in the world.

We hope you had a beautiful birthday Stephanie. You are so loved and cherished.


What is that?

Can you guess what this is?

Yes... it is made out of yarn.

You can see the knitting needles.

Size 7....if that helps any.

It didn't take very long to make it.

I hope some little person enjoys it.

The finished project is..........a small Teddy Bear

I found the Mother Bear Project on the Internet. It sends little bears to children in Africa that are HIV positive or infected with the Aids virus. After returning from China, I was saddened by the poverty there. I needed to find something to do for children somewhere. I hope that some little person enjoys the teddy bear as much as I have creating it. There will be more created. Hopefully some day we can find cures for the terrible diseases that take so many lives.