Saturday, April 05, 2014


Today Madoc lost her first tooth.  My absolutely gorgeous little girl is not so little anymore.  I love watching her grow and become more and more independent and opinionated.  She has so much to say.  Very strong opinions about everything under the sun.  Extremely dra-Madoc.

And the loss of this tooth has been the favourite topic of conversation for the past three months.  The last three days have been all about how wobbly it could possibly get before it fell out.  And then, who would collect it?  And how much is it worth in America?

Madoc's best little friend in Singapore was French.  Her big sister lost a tooth just before we left and was extremely excited for La Petite Souris to come ... in France they believe in a little mouse who comes to the child who has lost their tooth.  The mouse eats a small piece of cheese (how French) that the child has left along with the tooth, and then leaves the tooth and some money.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Paper Airplanes

Had to post this photo.  I just love it.
Hubs and Chase flying paper airplanes.

Dentist (Featuring A Wobbly Tooth)

I finally took the girls to the dentist.  We usually go every 6-months, but due to our relocation to Singapore and then speedy return to Portland, some things kinda slipped through the cracks....

We were pleased to hear that both girls have gorgeous teeth, with no cavities.  Phew!  Chase will probably need braces when she is 10.  

And Madoc is feeling VERY grown-up as she has her first wobbly tooth!  SO exciting.  It's been wobbly for about 3 months now.  We are all curious as to when it will come out, and how much, exactly, it will be worth.

Happy 8th Birthday, Chase!

My darling Chase.  You just turned 8.  You are so gorgeous and smart.  So funny and silly.  So beautiful and brave.  We are so proud of you.

You will probably remember this as your "family birthday party."  It was a very special one - you had your grandparents, uncles & aunts - and cousins.  It was so lovely.

Everyone had a crown - and we had to guess our name.  You were Wonder Woman.  Dad was Ken.  I was Donald Duck.  And Madoc was Madoc.

We then had fortunes read.  Yours said you would be famous.

And then we had cake.  I made you this gluten-free Angel Food cake.  Served it with a blueberry sauce.  You loved it.  I think you would have eaten the whole thing if I would have let you.

And you picked out your own roses this year.  
Eight for you, and one for each of us.

I so hope this year is a great one for you.
The world is your oyster, my dear.
You are strong, brave and clever.
We love you so much.  Always and forever.  No matter what.


I decided to get some chicks for the girls.

The first day, the girls couldn't put them down.  They were obsessed.  Madoc read the chicks a bedtime story and awoke first thing the following morning to read to them again.  I (foolishly) told her that reading to them would help them grow, so she soon decided to stop reading to them because she wanted them to stay small and cute.

Chase had a hard time picking out the "right" chick.  There was a lot of discussion about which one was the best chick.  Hard to tell, when they are one week old - and there are about 75 all running around inside a tub together.

Now, about two weeks later, the chicks are not so interesting.  They are growing very quickly and I'm thanking my lucky stars we arranged the re-homing before we bought them.  They have taken over the den - so much so that Hubs doesn't want to watch TV anymore.  Not that we watched much at all, but now we watch none at all.  Good stuff.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


What? Yes, we have relocated to my hometown, Portland, Oregon.  And yes, I've vowed to start blogging again.  Not because I have more time (I don't), but because I haven't done it in so long I fear if I don't start again - now, today at this very minute - I may never get to it.

So much has happened.  We moved from Hong Kong to Singapore - to escape the pollution.  Upon arriving, we immediately faced health/food allergy issues with Chase - and then spent the next six months trying to figure out exactly what she could and couldn't eat.  The poor darling had a scope, an MRI, multiple blood draws, learned how to swallow pills, had to swallow some of the nastiest liquid imaginable in advance of her scope.  Long story, short - we now have an official diagnosis, which is not for this blog, but there are still so many questions about how, why and what's next.  I still try every day to figure out what to feed her - both so that she is well fed and not bored by the sheer repetitiveness of what is on offer.

After six months in Singapore, we finally took our home-leave after two years abroad.  We left Portland in December determined to return and put down roots, but how?  A week after we returned to Singapore, the answer presented itself and we decided to relocate as soon as possible, so just two weeks later, the girls and I found ourselves on another 26-hour flight back to Portland.

As we are returning without jobs, my husband and I have been in touch with everyone we know, applying to jobs, moving from my father's to my mother's to a friend's home.  We may need to move to yet another friend's home before this is all done ... we've lived in 10 places in the last six months.  That means we have packed/unpacked a total of 20 times in the last six months.  We're pretty much totally over it.

Given all this, the girls are doing remarkably well.  I can only liken it to being in a car on a cross-country ride together - as they aren't in school, we spend every waking moment together, as a family.  And while we aren't stuck in a car, we are with each other all. the. time., which in my mind is great and exactly what we needed to iron out some issues that arose due to my husband's weekly travel schedule.

Chase is reading so many books.  About 6 per day.  Madoc is learning to read.  Both girls are doing an amazing job at math.  Chase can already do algebra.  Fabulous.  I love having them home with me.  They are so gorgeous and bright and brilliant and fun.  What an amazing time in our lives.  What a gift this time is.  It is a time we have needed so badly.  A time for all of us to relax, regroup, recharge.

Thursday, October 10, 2013


Oh my dear Chase, over the past 12 days you have eaten so much white rice.

You see, when we moved to Singapore your tummy went all funny.  It may have been going funny for some time, but now that you are older I don't check the toilet so much as I used to.  Long story short, just after moving here it became very obvious that you tummy (actually your digestive track) was having some challenges.

And so I took you to see a doctor, who ran some tests to see if you had, perhaps, caught a bug.  But they came back negative.  And then, after it continued another two weeks, I took you to see a specialist.  Who told me you needed an endoscopy to help us understand what was going on up there ... but she wasn't available to do it, so she referred us to another doctor.  And after we left the office I decided to put you on a very strict, anti-allergen diet, just to see what would happen.  And would you believe, that in 24 hours, everything returned to normal?  After six weeks of not normal, it all went back to normal in 24 hours.

And so I shared this information with the specialist, who was amazed at the results.  She told me to continue on and come back in a week, to see if we could maintain it.  And you did.  You are such a trooper.  Such an amazing little girl.  You only ate what I fed you, even when other kids were eating cookies, and never complained.  And 8 days later, your tummy was doing just fine.

And then the specialist referred us to an allergist, who took some blood and ran some tests - as well as put pieces of tape on your back, which will be removed tomorrow.  I hope they give us some indication of what is going on.  I do find relief in that our paediatrician wants to see us in a month - that's good news... and that the "diagnosis" on our receipts has changed to "food allergy."  With luck we will find the things that are triggering your upset, eliminate them and help your gut heal quickly.

You are such a superstar, Chase my dear.  You have no idea how much we love and appreciate all that you do, all that you are.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Grandpa Mark

Girls, I hope you always remember Grandpa Mark like this ... He is such a great adventurer and explorer, and he loves the outdoors - and mountains - just like your own father.  There is so much to see out there; I hope that you will both become great adventurers and explorers, too.

Settling In

And here they are, my beautiful girls!  This shot caught Madoc in between smiles and splashing.  

Our new house in Singapore comes with a bomb shelter, and the girls now have their own little jacuzzi.  Way too cute.

They are getting so big!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Madoc Field Trip

Today I went with Madoc to the Jacob Ballas children's garden.  It was her first field trip with her class.  The garden was lovely, with so much to see and do.  The children spent the majority of their time at the "Tree House," but Madoc and I decided to have a little adventure.

We found a wonderful man-made waterfall, which happens to be on the way to the toilets.  Nothing like running water to make you pick up the pace!

They had a wonderful pond with fish and turtles, a tree trunk children could climb into, a vegetable garden with a wonderful bean trellace, seats made from old wood, trails that wound around inside the garden - and a maze.  All in all, it was a really nice day.

Madoc even got to roll down a hill for the first time!  She loved it and was covered in grass.  The sun was blazing hot, so by 11:30, the children were all hot, exhausted and ready to go home.