The pigeon has several stages… Happy Halloween!

31 10 2013

Kajsa wanted to be the pigeon this year for Halloween–that is, “the” pigeon of Mo Willems’ books, namely, Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus. She loves the Willems books. And the pigeon. As do I. They’re quite fun.

Our little pigeon had three stages, thanks to three opportunities to wear the costume–Chinese school, Elementary School parade, and trick-or-treating tonight. Whatever the stage, it was a fun Halloween!

Pigeon #2, fabric wings. School parade.

Pigeon #2, fabric wings. School parade.

(different beak, smaller tail, more comfy velcro on the hood)

(different beak, smaller tail, more comfy velcro on the hood)

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Backwards Birthday Party

28 07 2013

We survived! And we even had fun, hosting our first at-home birthday party for Kajsa. Kajsa was thrilled to have 9 friends able to come celebrate her birthday… especially since it was a  “Backwards, Upside Down, Wacky Party”. We sent out mirror invitations (you held the invitation up to a mirror to read it); kids were invited to wear items of clothing backwards if they wished; and we played some backwards games in addition to some “normal” games. Normal: Hide and Seek;

Backwards games: Kickball, Red Light/Green Light and Goose Goose Duck.  As kids arrived they could color in a piece of paper with their names spelled backwards in block letters…. and for party favor bags we gave out silly putty, Tangle Toys, and some Scratch ‘n Sniff Stickers.

Sticking with the “Backwards, Upside Down, Wacky” theme, we had an upside down birthday cake. It was truly a team effort: Jim and Kajsa went shopping for ingredients, Kajsa helped stir, frost, and did lots of watching… and Thelma loaned me the cake pans, helped with the cake strategy, and stopped by several times to help out when I needed help. Thanks, team!! Clearly I’m not a cake decorator, but it was fun making this one. 

I had hoped to do a lot more with the theme… eating cake under the table, for instance. And blowing up lots of balloons to hang from the ceiling.  But time either got away from us (as in the balloon instance) or we thought better of the idea (eating under the table…. Abby would have loved all that people food at her level!).

Thankfully, our six year old is sometimes very understanding: after everyone left yesterday I sighed and said,

“Kajsa, I’m so sorry. We never even had time to blow up and hang all those balloons!”

“That’s ok, mom,” she said. “I can live a life without balloons.”

🙂





Pool Photos

25 07 2013

I took these photos yesterday on my Samsung. One of the best things we have done this summer is to join the local pool. SO fun. SO great for Kajsa to see and play with so many friends–old and new. And she’s getting braver and braver. I love to see her confidence grow each time she jumps/belly flops/walks/attempts to dive off the diving board. So fun.

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Diving Board

Image 10

Jim, after a jump…

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Happy 6th Birthday, Kajsa!

25 07 2013

Happy 6th Birthday to Kajsa Ling!!

ImageImageThis morning she had a birthday breakfast of a doughnut with candle… (ok, she didn’t eat the candle. Just the doughnut.) And she loved all the balloons we had blown up for her. She’ll have more balloons come Saturday, when we have her friends birthday party… but this is enough balloons in the house for today!





Last day of Kindergarten, Part 2

18 06 2013
on... to 1st grade

the “I’m a 1st grader” pose….

After she got off the bus, Kajsa struck this pose… woo hooooo!!! No longer a Kindergartener. On to 1st grade. She LOVED Kindergarten. I loved her class, her teacher, her school… all in all, very excited for this kid and her educational future.

This morning when I told Kajsa I was a bit teary-eyed because it was her last day as a Kindergartener, she jumped into my arms, and said,

“But mom!… It’s a good thing that it’s my last day of Kindergarten!”

“It is?” I asked.

“Yes! It means I get to spend more time with YOU now!”

"Welcome to Summer!"
“Welcome to Summer!”
Balloons!!!!! She loves balloons.

Balloons!!!!! She loves balloons.





Lent 47: Easter Joy

31 03 2013

Christ is risen! He is risen indeed!

I realize that not everyone feels this joy today. Not everyone is celebrating the resurrection.. some don’t believe, some are too tired, some are alone and feeling that loneliness… some are suffering through other hardships that make celebration difficult. Which makes the day even more painful–that so many are celebrating, and yet joy is hard to muster up in the midst of some circumstances.

Lent 47: Easter JoyI realize that Easter doesn’t solve all the problems of the world. Far from it. Things still go wrong, awfully wrong, all the time. Life can be so challenging and frustrating and all sorts of … “ing”s.

I realize that tomorrow is Monday, work begins again, the same to-do lists we had sitting on our desks and dining room tables and other flat spaces in homes.. these to-do lists will still be there. And no amount of peanut butter eggs, or lasagna, or ham, or turkey, or whatever… will do the work for us. No matter how creative our dyed eggs are–or aren’t–stuff is waiting for us tomorrow. And even today.

And I realize that in all these situations and in every situation, God is still good. Christ has still risen. And my hope and prayer today is that I, and you, can reflect the joy of knowing the risen Lord, whether we feel joyful or not.

May the Easter Joy bring you strength and peace today, and every day.





Lent 33: Barbie’s balance

18 03 2013

Yesterday, Kajsa had her Barbies packing into this Barbie jeep. Two of them are in the seats, seat belts on. She asked me how to get a third one in the jeep, since there were only two seats. I put it in the back, and told her

In real life, we don’t do this… you have to have a seat belt on, and if there’s not a belt in the back, there’s no place to sit in the back.

She kept playing, while I did something else in the other room. Lent 33: Barbie's balance

Then she called me in to look. “Look at Mommy Cathy” she said.. (“Mommy Cathy” would be the Barbie on the jeep’s hood). “In real life, she can’t do this, because there’s no seat belt.”

I laughed, and said, “I hope she doesn’t fall off!

Oh she won’t“, Kajsa said, “Mommy Cathy has a great sense of balance!

A few seconds later, thanks to to some rugged driving, perhaps, the Barbie fell off.

This week’s Lenten “Signs Along the Way” theme is “Dangerous Intersection”. The gospel text for yesterday was John 12:1-8: where Mary anointed Jesus’ feet with oil… her extravagant gift, compared with Judas’ response. Judas was “concerned” about the poor, though, the text says, he wasn’t really. When faith and life intersect, we are frequently faced with tough choices, challenges, and frustrations. We seek balance, but often are misguided, or over-guess/under-guess… balance is hard to come by.

Sometimes I think I am balanced–much like the “Mommy Cathy Barbie”. Or, much like her owner, rather… I perceive balance when, in reality, I’m not at all balanced, and I fall off the hood of the jeep.