6 1/2...officially

6 1/2 today.

Or maybe it was yesterday?

In our defense, a short month of February makes figuring a half-birthday for August 31 just a smidge tricky.

Regardless of the exact date, it's official once we go for donuts.

So tonight?

Well...tonight we went for donuts.

Which means that my peanut is officially halfway to seven.

Happy half-birthday to our pint sized dynamo.  Today you LOVE to read, you get lost in Legos and Snap circuits, you love to sing the songs you've learned at church, and you give what are perhaps the tightest hugs on the planet.  You are an integral part of the M family.

I love you to the sun and back and to the farthest planet and back and then to the stars and back.


But you still have limited Wii time.


Xin Nian Kuai Le

Happy Year of the Sheep/Ram/Goat!


Wordless Wednesday {snow smack-down}

snow day 2 with cousins


Overheard {I'll stay}

After a chaotic week full of vet visits, unplanned medical appointments and Valentine's Day celebrations that provided Natalie only one opportunity to nap, my little gal wasn't her usual happy yet spunky self.   Add to that waking up with an ear infection on Saturday, and nap time that day was simply not optional.

Of course on a day when both Daddy and beloved big siblings are home, sleeping was not a popular thought...

Enter her closet in age big brother.  This little guy surprised me with...

"...Don't worry Nata-wee.  I'll sit here until you fall asleep."

Believe it or not, he actually did.  And with company by her side, it took her just minutes to relax and doze off.

My littles.  

You never quite know which type of relationship they are going to have from minute to minute.  Either they are thick as thieves or they are mortal enemies.

Counting my blessings today that there was a moment of sibling adoration this weekend...


Overheard {wouldn't have enough}


Surely I'm not the only one that can't keep their son's knees enclosed in pants.  

Seriously, it seems that he comes home with a new hole in a pair of jeans at least once a week.  

Sometimes twice.  

Or more.

I've stopped making him change clothes before school when he comes downstairs in a pair with the knees blown out.  And I've stopped buying replacements.  At least until they are too short.  We've gotta have some money left to eat after all.  

I mean, I do hold standards for church...there is a pair that hang in his closet that are only ~ and I do mean ONLY ~ to be worn to church.  

But I figure social services aren't going to come after me for letting him wear holey jeans to school.  There are simply bigger fish to fry around here.  

Besides, in a conversation the other day he told me that he didn't mind the draft during cold weather.  And when I asked him if he wanted me to take all of the jeans with holes out of his drawer, he smiled, his eyes disappeared, and he said...

 ..."Better not.  I think that I wouldn't have enough jeans left."

For the record, he speaks truth.  I counted.

Beyond his church jeans, he has one pair with no holes what-so-ever.

I give him a few days.


CNY dancers

My girls.

Much of the year they consider themselves "your average American girls."

Sure we eat more than our share of rice and noodles, pandas and dragons are among our favorite animals, and xie xie is used interchangeably with thank you at our house, but my girls swim, take guitar lessons and love Umizoomi like their peers.

But for the two months leading up to the Lunar New Year, my girls step out of their "girl next door" and take great pride in their the fact that they are indeed Chinese American.  During that time we sacrifice Saturday afternoons to traditional Chinese dance lessons through our local FCC chapter.

Their instructors are the Cloud Fairies...girls that started out as scarf dancers years ago.  These young ladies are tremendous role models for our younger dancers and as you can see at the bottom of the photo, they are watched carefully and admired greatly.  All of the elementary age girls are just waiting for the day they get to do the double ribbon dance as Cloud Fairies...

Last year the my girls performed at a much smaller venue (at a church), with maybe 250 people in attendance.  This year they performed in the Triangle Area's Lunar New Year Festival at the state fairgrounds in the arena used for hockey games and the circus in its time.  And they were on a stage nearly five feet off the ground.

At dress rehearsal Friday night I worried how things would go when the several hundred chairs at the tables and many of the stadium seats on the viewing side of the stage were full.  I was slightly worried that at least one of the girls would become paralyzed with stage fright.

I need not have been concerned.

Natalie and her fellow scarf dancers, all ages 4 to 6, took to the stage as if dancing in front of a thousand people was something they did every day.

They were simply adorable and I kept hearing folks in the audience saying so.

Proud of her as I was for going through the entire routine, I didn't have much time to bask in the moment because as soon as she went offstage I had a quick sprint to meet her and guide her out to where Ian, the boys and his mom were stationed so we could watch the next round of dancers.

Darcy and her friends, ages 6 to 8, were next.  The fan dance is a fun one to watch, especially when the flowing fans are revealed for the first time.  I've watched this routine two years now and still love to that first swish of fabric.

DQ was poised and confident and watching her makes us realize that we need to get this child into regular dance lessons of some type.

The next set of FCC dancers were the ribbon girls.  Kylie and her peers, mostly ages 8 and 9 did a fantastic job.  And best of all was Ky's hesitation at all to step out onto stage to perform in front of a large crowd.

The girls have several other opportunities to perform these routines, in much smaller venues, this year, but already they are looking forward to starting practice next year when Nat will be in fans, DQ will move to ribbons, and Ky will be in batons.