Sunday, August 22, 2010

She Can Ride Her Bike!!

Lin finally got the hang of riding her bike today!! (Now we just need to work on steering and braking...)

I love this one... In case you can't hear it clearly, Lin says "You look-ah. Me this way is Boom!" That's a taste of her acquired use of the English language after just two months home. Ridiculously cute!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Dentists aren't as bad as Doctors!

Lin seemed to have a great time at the movie the other day. She was very happy when her friend asked her, via the pocket-translator, if she wanted to go. Before the movie she did her hair -- nothing fancy, but I just thought it was so cute that she wanted to spend time styling her hair before going! When she got home she said the movie was good, and she was really chatty and silly all evening. So I think she had fun.

Yesterday Lin went to the dentist for the first time in her life. Only 1 cavity and no other problems -- woo hoo!! Dave and I were both worried about what they would find, although Lin has never complained about her teeth. The poor girl was in the dentist chair for nearly 2 hours!! First she had a consultation with the dentist, which wasn't too invasive, just more or less looking at her teeth. And then the cleaning began! I told Lin that she could tell the hygenist to stop at any time. The hygenist was very caring and didn't want to overwhelm Lin or frighten her from ever coming back, and she said she would clean until Lin had had enough. Well, Lin hung in there and did great! Now hopefully getting that cavity filled won't be too traumatic for her.

I don't have any new pictures of Lin, but here are some pictures of Ruby, demonstrating how to properly clean your Radio Flyer Red Wagon:
Step One: Fill with water

Step Two: Add soap

Step Three: Add more water as needed (flip-flops are optional )
Step Four: Rinse and repeat
*The addition of a fancy dress and a fluffy pink tutu are optional, and will not affect the outcome of the cleaning.*

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I Feel Too Guilty!

Okay, okay, I can't take it! I feel too guilty for posting something so negative and selfish...

It's all good now!
I was just having a kinda lousy day at work and needed some sympathy. But I've heard from quite a few people now, so thank you thank you thank you!!

I'm pretty excited for Lin today -- she's going out to a movie with friends!! Our wonderful daycare lady is taking Lin and the two sisters who are Lin's age out for a movie this afternoon. I'm so happy for Lin that she's starting to feel friendship toward these girls. There's still a ways to go -- it's not like they're having slumber parties or anything. But she's starting to mention them by name when I ask about her day, and last night when I asked her if she wanted to take a book to daycare today, she said no and then mentioned these two girls and pantomimed playing on the computer. I think they spend time on the computer with Ro*setta Stone, the girls teaching Lin English and Lin teaching them Chinese. The other day when I picked Lin and Ruby up, Lin was teaching the kids how to write their names in Chinese, and they told me she had taught some of the daycare kids how to play a game earlier that day.

I'm just happy because I know in Shanghai Lin was very popular and social and had a lot of friends. And the way she acts when she's at home, she just seems like such a funny girl who would just fit in so well with other kids her age. But she just seems so shy and hesitant when she's around other people. I know she thinks she can't make friends due to the language barrier. I'm hoping she's starting to learn that true friendship transcends language.

I'll let you all know how the movie goes!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Selfish Post

Alright, folks...
I'm going to use a brief blog update to be totally and completely and unapologetically selfish...

None of my blog readers wished me a happy birthday.

There, now don't you all feel guilty?

I'm kidding... I'm kidding... I'm not really so petty. It's just that I'm having one of those days at work that makes you want to shout "Someone else fix this for a change!!" and crawl back into bed.

Have I also mentioned that I have to wake up at 3:15 in the morning in order to be at work at 4:00am?!? C'mon, people, I deserve some sympathy, don't I?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Happy Birthday -- A Picture Post

Today is my birthday! I'm 35 today -- still very young, even though Lin laughs and tells me I'm old!
Here are some pictures of our day...
Lunch at our favorite BBQ restaurant -- yes, that's a whole rack of ribs on Dave's plate!

Dave very gratiously shared some of his yummy ribs with his girls.

After lunch we headed to Lake Michigan. It was Lin's first trip to the lakeshore!

We didn't take bathing suits -- we intended to just walk along the water. Needless to say, we got pretty soaked!

Mmmm... popsicles!
It was a great day! Dave told me that he was talking to Lin on the translator the other night about my birthday, and she typed in "It's my first mama's birthday."
Need I say more?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Doctors are No Fun

We had a really tough day last week. Lin had heart surgery when she was a toddler and, while she's living a normal healthy life with no restrictions now, she does need to see a cardiologist for regular check-ups. Well, Lin is not a fan of doctors. Her opinion is, I feel fine, I don't need to see a doctor. She is also extremely modest, and the idea that maybe the cardiologist would want to see the scar from her surgery was very upsetting to her. The more she talked about it, the angrier she became.

So we get into the examination room and what do they do? Hand her a hospital gown and tell her to undress. And it got worse from there. I will spare the details to maintain her privacy, but suffice it to say, an hour and a half later I had one ANGRY girl on my hands. I tried, throughout the appointment, to hold her hand and comfort her, but she was having none of it. When she was done I tried to talk to her and tell her what the doctor had said about her heart (looks good, see you next year) but she literally shoved past me out the exam-room door. Well at that point, all of my sympathy went out the window and now I was the angry one! I don't care how upset you are, you don't act disrespectfully to your mother!

So we got out to the parking garage and I tried to stop her again to talk to her. This time she stopped, but she would not look at me and still acted extremely disrespectful to me. After giving her the "Mom-glare" for several seconds, I turned and walked to the car. On the way home I thought about what her punishment should be. How do I balance respecting her feelings of confusion, embarassment and anger, with teaching her how to appropriately behave to her mother?

Well, I didn't have to do anything, as it turns out. We stopped to pick up Ruby from daycare and Lin stayed in the car. When I got back to the car with Ruby, Lin handed me her pocket-translator, which read "I was wrong to correct Mama. I'm sorry."

Someone please pass the tissues...

I immediately burst into tears and repeatedly told her "Wo ai ni. Wo ai ni." (I love you. I love you.) She laughed at me, called me crazy, and the incident was over.


Do I have any volunteers who would like to tell her she has a dentist appointment next week, and then a physical on Sept. 1st? ... Anyone ... ?

Monday, August 2, 2010

Bowling, Twilight, and Other Stuff...

Took the family bowling this past week. In this picture, Lin and Ruby are supposed to be "looking tough."

Champ! (Okay, she came in 4th out of 4, but I think she had fun anyway!)
Ruby's new scooter!

I told you I'd get a picture of Ruby in the pool! She was in the pool all afternoon yesterday!

Lin and Ruby went to a friend's birthday party at Young Chef's Academy. They made pizza and ice cream -- Yum!

So this has been our life this last week and a half since my last post. Busy and fun! I've also found the thing that Lin and I have in common that is just for the two of us -- Twilight! Yes, I've succombed to the lure of everything "Twilight" and I must say, I'm pretty darn obsessed. I wanted to find that one thing Lin and I could do together and I knew she was familiar with the Twilight books/movies, so I finally picked up the first book and ... well ... I'm now just about finished with book 3. I can't put it down! I took Lin out on a date to see "Twilight: Eclipse" in the theater, and I've ordered her a copy of the first book in Chinese. I really hope she enjoys reading it as much as I have!

I feel like I'm supposed to be embarrassed by this, but I've talked with several other mothers who all say that they like it, too, so I know I'm not alone.

(Should I be embarrassed that I encouraged her to get this "Edward" poster for her room? Maybe...)