Sunday, October 2, 2011

Change in season, change in style...

Did you notice the layout? Seemed like a nice time to make some changes... enjoy it .... or don't but it's here to stay until my next flight of whimsy takes place.
Nice, crisp day in the Northeast to head to the farm. It was all about tractors, and pumpkins, and family...

We were joined by Uncle Ron, Aunt Nancy, and cousin Bradley...


And Grammy loved gathering the perfect gourds for the kids...


All aboard the tractor for the trip out.. Heading back after a successful harvest. Kids and their crazy pictures.
What a great day..the boys searched and searched only to find the perfect 'plumbers' pumpkin, complete with the exposed buttcrack.


Some nice kids shots... Olivia and Cooper, Kira strikes a pose (of course), daddy and Tae, and I just love this one of mommy and Tae.


And who said that just coming back from the pumpkin patch meant the fun had to end. There are always things to when big tractors are around.


So that's about the wrap up of the events of this fun fall day... check here for more views from the trip.


Til next time...

S

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Ride on....

50 miles and not too bad.... thank you ALL for your support in my ride to wipe out MS. Me and the gang before the ride and then a little ice cream treat at the end (for those of you Where's Waldo fans, Olivia is missing because she was off at her batting lessons..)

and some followed along on Facebook but here are rest of the shots along the rest of the way.. beginning, rest stops, and into the finish...

PS - you can still visit the website for information and donations.... on to 75 miles next year!!!!


During the rest of the day, Grammy took the kids to see Lucy the elephant...


for those who don't know Lucy, here you go..


And finally we celebrate our Big 5 y/o... COOPER

enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Makoto followed by cake and presents at home.... follow the action...


Ok... that's almost 2 posts in under 2 weeks... good for me... and depending on how you enjoy the pictures and updates.... maybe good for you...


S

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Welcome back...

Nothing like the first day of school to revisit the old Blogoshpere. And with the sheer amount of stuff that will be crammed into the post, you'll understand why I might be a little behind in updates.

So, following along Olivia is entering 5th grade, Kira 2nd, Cooper into Kindergarten, and Tae continues along the tradition of spending his days at Ms Barbara's.

As we last left our bunch of maniacs it was the beginning of school last year. Over this past year we have gone through quite a laundry list of changes, updates, vacations, and fun-fun-fun!!

Our very own Olivia decided that it was somehow, someway time that she turned double digits. When in the hell did that happen, I never said she could turn 10??? Kira had turned 6 at the time of my last post and has now just celebrated her 7th birthday... God Help US!!!


After seeming like it's only been a short time since Cooper has been home, can you believe that he has turned 4 and is going on 5 in only a few weeks?


And, although chronologically last in order, those of you who know him know that he will NOT let you for get about him... little man Tae has just turned a big 3. And now that the most important updates are out of the way, my computer has decided that is doesn't want to play anymore... I'm having trouble pulling pictures over and saving information.


Therefore I think I will just leave it at that right now and carry on with some more updates over the next few days (or probably weeks at the rate that I am going...) In that time I will run through the annual pumpkin and apple fun at the farm....Halloween celebrations during our annual Disney journey. And then there was Christmas, along with a journey to Costa Rica for retirement dreams.... softball, lots of softball... and even more softball...... Preschool graduation.... summer fun and nature walks and back around to school...


Well, I guess I got more in than I thought I would...


Off for now... check in later..


S
























Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fall In...

Another summer closes and autumn rolls in.. with that means the start of new school year and a bunch of birthdays.....


So Olivia enters 4th grade...


Kira goes into 1st...


and lo and behold our little Cooper is heading off to preschool ALL DAY.. loooooooves the bus ride each day... can you believe it?!?!? So we'll see how school itself goes, but if this rendition of the Pledge of Allegiance goes, I think things will be alright. Loves his Thomas back pack (thanks Aunt Kathy and Uncle Jerry)... but I think he could actually carry himself home in it. And he's just momma's little boy...


And our last (YES, I said LAST!!!) little boy stays with Miss Barbara for a little while longer.. it will be good for him to spend some time by himself and not be pushed around by his brother, but also kind of sad to be the last one there... Once Olivia was old enough, we always had 2 kids with Miss Barbara at once.. Olivia had Kira to transition, Kira had Cooper, and Cooper had Tae... so I do think he's a little shell-shocked... anyway, we move on...


So Kira had her 6th birthday ... she had a family party , got some wonderful new clothes and of course Justin Bieber ... then her 'Fancy Nancy' dress up party with all her wonderful school friends (no pictures for privacy reasons)... how much has changed here??? little older, same attitude.


And Cooper had his 4th birthday party... also got lots of cool stuff... and was just in heaven... Doesn't seem lie too long ago that this was how we remember him, does it??


Next up, Olivia = 10!!!! double digits for our little baby!!!


Well... alas, it wouldn't have been the unofficial end of summer without a great labor day party at Aunt Cathi's summer house (thanks Great Aunt Carol and Uncle Ed)... kids enjoyed the park - climbed rock walls, hit the slides, rode the teeter-totter and then we watched the sun go down.... down.... down.... and then out... quiet ride home...


The boys got to meet their very new friend, Jack, and had a great time at the Holt picnic. And all the time we get questions about Cooper and Tae being twins (I get the Asian connection, but really??) I digress.. the reason I mention it is just looking at Tae and Jack makes me think family ties much more, don't you think? Prior to the Holt picnic, the boys also got a chance to spend some nice time with Uncle Ron and their cousin Bradley... real fun playing on the gym set right on the beach.. really cool... Cooper in his best Land's End pose.. and Tae just going right after anything he can climb on.... the boy with NO FEAR!!!

And what would end of summer/ early fall be without a hurricane... or at least the threat of a hurricane... Earl the dud!!! But the kids enjoyed an afternoon over at the beach seeing the lightly rough surf... girls challenged the water's edge and the boys content with digging (as always).. and actually spending a little time together. Of course, Tae figures since we are at the beach, it's time to take his shirt off... and then he decides he will play bird whisperer.

So as I leave you with the remaining pictures, you may notice a few pictures from Susan's trip to Las Vegas that she took with her mother for an International Living seminar... International living you say??? sounds crazy I know, but sometimes you have to think about the future a little... I cannot say much right now.. but a few trips abroad will give us some more insight... maybe Costa Rica??? maybe Panama??? who knows...

Well, as I mentioned I leave you with the end of summer/ early fall slide show.... enjoy.....

Talk later,
S

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Summer fun...


... and almost done.... :-(

Well, sad to say, the unofficial summer season is coming to an end. which is not to say that we haven't our share of mirth and merriment the past few months... and with the brood such that it is, there will always be something to share, celebrate, and discover. Actually, even though we all enjoy the heat and outdoor fun of the summer there is plenty of fun to come... first days of school, pumpkin picking, annual Disney trip, trips to NYC, festive holidays, etc... so we'll keep checking in if you will to.

So where did I leave off.. Tae's birthday??? OK, I'm cheating because I had Tae's birthday celebration post in my 'drafts' and just posted it... so anyway, I'll pick it up there.


and speaking of our little adventurer... I am not sure this is the safest thing, but it just couldn't be missed. (video clip may take a few seconds to load and run). And this just before 'the plunge'.

so summer is a time when we all try to get together and have some fun... Tae and his cousin Bradley had a fantastic time playing the piano.. and brother Cooper reads to Tae... and one of the rare times that they can sit together without hitting, beating, yelling at each other. And what the girls decide to do with this camera I'll never know... except for the fact that it has been the most fun thing this summer with the underwater aspect.. and what the hell this is with Tae, I have no idea.

So, as we all know summer is about the beach and the pool.... Tae and Kira getting busy building some sand castle.. Cooper and Tae digging and dumping.. the girls catching some waves... Kira... Olivia... and again another day..Olivia and Kira.... Cooper so proud of himself... and just glad to see that Tae has learned to enjoy the beach. Tae the ham.... Cooper ever industrious... and all Kira wanted to do was collect jellyfish.. I think she had about 20 of them collected in the bucket. Olivia just watching the waves... and then making her move to the water. Cooper and Tae enjoying the water.... and the bonus... dolphins... have to look hard, but they're there... there were so many.. they kept swimming and showing off hour after after.
Sooo... catching up a little with general info... as surprising as it may seem, Olivia really likes having her glasses... and not just because they are taking away her reading headaches... And she continues to play with the traveling Stafford Stingrays.. at bat, and in base-stealing position... and this is what happens when the kids purloin the camera.... Kira.... Olivia... Cooper... and Kira yet again... for those who know her you will understand. And as the tail end of her 40th birthday celebration, I was able to secure some seats (apparently very good.. yeah for me!!!) to the Rob Thomas show at the Borgata for Susan. She was able to go with a few of her very good friends, Cathi and Sandee. I think they were like 20-30 feet away??.. good or bad.. signing my own divorce decree?!?!? Hmmm... crazy kids??? could this be where Kira gets her wonderful penchant for photography... nice mom...
And finally the 'end of summer'.. trying to cram in as much as we can before school starts and I get back from my summer vacation.... oh wait, I remember that I only get a few days off here and there in the summer, but I digress....
Camden Aquarium.... followed by a little trip to Baewon for Korean BBQ... I so love the Nakji Dolsot (bibimbop in a hot stone bowl with spicy octopus) and Galbi.. and the kids initially needed to be bribed with Cold Stone Creamery afterward, but I actually think they didn't mind trying it. So the aquarium was much fun... except when we tried to take a family picture in front of the monster crabs.. Tae felt is was not time to take pictures... but he finally calmed a little.. and you can almost here Cooper announce " OH MY GOSH" when he realized that the sharks were swimming overhead. Tae did enjoy seeing the hippos.. and tried to catch the fish in the tank... Cooper made his try at catching them too. Olivia tries to impart some of her 'extensive' nautical knowledge to the boys.. fish ... and more fish... touching the stingrays.... and of course Tae has to get his hands in the water.... this was just a really cool centerpiece in the atrium.... everyone checking out the seals (mom's favorite)... loving sisters... crazy sisters... Tae trying to figure out how to drain the tanks??? and making his escape... and what would a tourist attraction be without photo ops... Olivia, Kira, Cooper, Tae.
And we finish up with the major DUD that was Hurricane Earl.... took the kids to the beach to see if there was anything to report, but alas it was just some wind, clouds, and rough surf... not horrible but rough enough.. (but certainly not what I would want for the couple getting married on the beach next to us..) The gang lining up to say hi before scattering... off to run in the sand... the girls run along the water line and the boys sit quietly (and safely) to play.... apparently Tae figures since we are the beach it's time to get undressed to play.. and then goes on to play the role of bird whisperer... and I just sat and enjoyed the peace of the beach.
For the entire photo recap of the summer from end of school to end of vacation... and Hurricane Earl photos...
OK, whew I'm tired now... enjoy what's left of summer and check back in again soon.
S

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Welcome back....

Hey, where have you been??? I missed my legion of fans.... Oh and now you are going to blame me because I didn't update the site for a month?!?!? OK, you're right, my bad.. I'll try to update as best as I can....


So first of all we must start by wishing my beautiful bride a happy 40th birthday. Tough to top the 4 day trip to Disney for my day, but I tried...so Happy Birthday....

Anyway.... I must also say.... and this may seem somewhat cryptic but those who know will understand... your journey has just begun and we couldn't be happier... enjoy your travels, trust your instincts, and trust yourselves to be strong {but we'll always be here to help...}

So on to the general updates...

Olivia had a great end to the school year, including being named Student of the Month and then to her and our surprise... she was also picked to receive an award (fourth from right) for completing an exercise regimen for the month of April...

Kira had her shining moment during the Kindergarten show... she sang her little heart out {third row - 2nd from left in blue) in addition to being picked to introduce one of the musical numbers. Sorry, but I did not load up the videos.. if you want to see them I can send them....

And the boys??? Well, much to Susan's and my absolute delight, they had their first sleepover at Grammy and Poppy's!!!! Poppy wearing the boys out?? or just wearing themselves out?? Getting ready for bed.. You think that they enjoyed themselves??? Cooper and Tae found themselves enjoying their new little beds... and the rest of their little adventure...

So onto summer... gotta love the beach.... Olivia and Kira just before they hit the waves.... not sure what the heck Cooper is getting ready to do, but I am sure it was trouble... I am sure afraid of what these pictures will look like in a few years, but for now I'll just enjoy how 'cute' they are.... And of course there is the wonderful pool at Mimi and PopPops... so wonderful to see Tae finally enjoying the water... And the rest of the crew are becoming little swim bugs as well - Olivia Kira Cooper So I couldn't sit still and not buy some new toy.. along comes underwater camera.... very fun..... the girls took off with it and went wild with it.... even getting an action shot of me as I dove in.... cousin Luke getting in on the action.... and a wonderful shot of the girls... Dad and his boys.... Mom and her boys... and the boys having a nice swim together... how sweet... and Mom enjoying time with Kira ... and Tae... and so for the rest of the swimtime pictures....

Well, gotta go for now.... and if your good I'll update sooner.....

Scott

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Oh Happy times....

Happy Family Day, Tae Michael!!!!



....then..... and now.....

1 year ago we travelled around the world to finally meet you and welcome you to our family.... I think things have gone pretty well....

Love, Mom and Dad

PS - Best wishes, safe travels, and lots of love to our friends making this journey VERY SOON!!! can't wait to see and hear all about it.....

***even more updates to come.. have a lot since last update but this one kind of stood on it's own.

Monday, May 24, 2010

What?!?! Me... 40?!?!


Midlife what??? It's symbolic of where I am at this point in life.... took me a while to get it done, but now that the family is complete, I figured it was time.

Yeah, that's right... major milestone reached ... and I think the 3 week celebration is finally over... for all those that participated in making this time special for me, I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

Well, that's certainly not the only thing going on, but I will admit it did take most of the headlines over the past few weeks.

So for this wonderful event, my wife thought that it would be fun to take me (sans kids-yikes!!) to Disney World for a long weekend so we could just enjoy our own company for a little while... and boy was she right!!!!! In addition to partying like rock stars, we just laughed, and smiled, and had the best time. And many thanks to our friends/ neighbors, we had a great place to stay, and had a wonderful time together with them.... so many thanks to Tom and Sherry. Speaking of a great place to stay... Bay Lake Towers = awesome... Beautiful way to wake up every morning... and to just sit on the balcony like this couldn't be more relaxing, or beautiful... a fine place for a cup of coffee (and maybe a few Landsharks) at 7 AM. Of course, this was the way to get this trip started (not counting the 4 AM bloody marys before the plane). Had to show Cooper how close the monorail was... and I think he would probably just sit there and watch over and over as they entered the Contemporary. So dinner for my birthday was one of my absolutely favorite places to go - Shula's ... I highly recommend it if you have a little extra $$ and want probably one of the best steaks you have ever eaten. And on to JellyRolls for some dueling pianos.... methinks we had all had a good time, do you agree Tom? Sherry? And how cool is it to have seen the space shuttle launch during the day -admittedly we were a bit far away - like half the state of Florida - but cool to just see the 'matchstick' fire up... trail across the sky.... and leave a big, long vapor trail... the whole process took less than 2 minutes, but the vapor trail was there for over 20-30 minutes... it was just plain cool!! So just some fun pictures of acting silly... Tom and Susan enjoying the convertible... hanging with the characters.... checking out the animals. And do you know what?? they talk about the animals being most active at night or first thing in the morning on the Kilimanjaro safari, but we went right at the hottest time in the middle of the day and it was the BEST safari I can remember... maybe they just knew they were celebrating with me?!? And a little fun at Universal Studios... have to admit I am Disney snobbish and Universal doesn't even come close to the experience as Disney, but I will say the rides are absolutely wicked!!! Hulk... insane!!! Spiderman, Dueling Dragons, Jurassic Park, Dr. Seuss ride... and not to mention the sneak peeks at the Harry Potter world which really looks fantastic and should be a boatload of fun.

For the entire 40th celebration trip... see here.

So, enough about me I suppose.... how is everyone else doing? sharing the last of my birthday suprises - a little Dreamland BBQ straight from Birmingham, AL.

Susan's fortieth will be coming up shortly and I am sure that there will be some time put aside for that so I will defer until that time.

Olivia has been paying mondo amounts of softball between the coaches pitch rec league and the Stingrays traveling team. She has gone from a meek player to an aggressive little go getter... just last weekend she was in our home tournament and went 1-2 in three out of four games with several stolen bases and 4 runs scored... on base percentage of something like .850. And in coaches pitch, the team has not lost over 20 games in two years... much thanks to coaches Grandpa Bob and Grandma Kathy.... and coming up in 1 week will be her celebration for Student of the Month.

Kira has been playing a little t-ball of her own.. recently getting the game ball. She too has gone from barely being able to hold the softball to smacking it to both fields and fielding grounders. And to have gone from having trouble getting her letters straight out of preschool to see her taking 3-4 books to bed with her and reading is AWESOME!!! It's amazing how much growth she has gone through this past year.... we're all so proud. And maybe by the next writing a visit from the tooth fairy will have been in order???

And to our little boys... as previously mentioned, Tae has officially become a member of the Sattan family complete with new birth certificate and everything. Now to put the finishing touches on the paperwork and we are good to go. He is rapidly approaching his first year home with us and celebration of his 'family day', followed shortly by his 2nd birthday. Here he shares a nice moment reading with PopPop. Cooper recently celebrated family day on May 7, which was a perfect combination with mothers day. Cooper is having assessment by the school to see if we can get him some extra help when he goes to preschool next year. Overall he is a polite little boy who is well-spoken but not always appropriately spoken. And for those who have been witness he does have difficulty with his temperament and controlling his emotions, so we think that maybe some extra guidance would be beneficial for him.

Well, I think I have rambled on way too long so I will stop now... summer is coming and I am sure there will be more tales to tale, pictures to show, and laughs to share.

For now, be well...

Scott

PS - and for those waiting to take that long, scary yet rewarding trip... we are keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.. and can't wait to meet that new little man...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Welcome spring... Welcome Tae Michael Sattan


So let today be the official welcome to the Sattan clan. Today was the court date to have our request for permanent adoption of Tae into our family granted; and everything went well. Thanks to all family and friends that have helped us, supported us, been there for us, and been happy for us as we moved through this experience. So I think that Tae is happy that the judge said OK.. don't you?

And this better be the only time that either of these two little men share a room with a judge, unless they are joining the supreme court!!!! But you have to admit, he's one cute little bugger...



Sooooo... anyway.... been a little preoccupied lately so no real updates... SORRY for those who follow along the BLOG scene religiously... eagerly awaiting each little nugget of information that is offered up....



AND for those who have completely forgotten or given up on the BLOG, but just happened to check back because your Facebook alert told you do so, welcome back....



Our little Kira has just been plugging right along in Kindergarten - all she wants to do when she gets home from school is go up in her room and 'teach' her brothers or her dolls, or whomever will listen. And read, and read, and read... THANK GOD she got mom's interest in reading!!! But our pride in her was only bolstered as she received the 'Character Counts - Responsibility' award as nominated by her teacher. On to the last leg of the year.... softball is starting and she is gearing up for a great season.



Olivia has finished a great winter by skiing her heart out and just killing the mountain. She even went on a full weekend away from the parents and stayed/ skied with PopPop - even heading to the TOP of the mountain without so much as a problem. Wish I had the pictures, but it seems that all the ones PopPop got were either 'posing' at the top of the lift in her cute little snowsuit, or eating chicken nuggets in the cafeteria. If I can get hold of some, I will send them out. Softball has continued through the winter for the traveling team - Under-10 Stingrays and now she will head outside to see if they can defend their undefeated season in the town league (but who'a counting because nobody keeps score or gives out a championship trophy or anything.. it may be too psycholigically damaging for those who lost..... boo freaking hoo.....) BUT I digress.... the good thing is she seems to be really getting along with her brothers and is becoming more responsible in helping them and watching them as they play...



Alas, poor Cooper has survived his harrowing time in the hospital... THANKS TO ALL who prayed for his health and for those who helped in ANY way during this ordeal. But you can see for yourself how his time went... and these are when he was actually feeling better about a day before discharge. We tried to keep him busy in the dayroom.. Mimi trying to get him interested in Thomas... but I suppose feeding the baby won out.... He just was not happy... and it was just heartbreaking to see how tired/ fatigued/ and downright beat up he was... If you look closely, you can see just how bad his mouth looked... and again this was 2-3 days after high dose antiviral meds and was looking better... but those sores initially spanned both lips and along the gums all the way down his throat and tongue. But he's doing well now... the prevailing theory (mostly mine and Susan's since they never actually gave us one at the hospital) - he developed severe CoxSackie virus causing severe mouth and throat sores... he literally could not eat for 3-4 days and developed stomach pain from the continuous flow of acid into his stomach and the inability to eat or drink at all... once the sores started clearing up and he could eat small amounts, his stomach felt better and he was back to normal within a week of full eating and drinking.



Of course, Susan thought it would be funny to capture me in the middle of my attempt at home repairs. Unfortunately, it is not finished yet since January..... ooops. But thankfully she did not get a picture of my leg hanging through the ceiling for which I was repairing. Yup, that's right... even AFTER putting floorboards in the attic, I still managed to step right through and open a gaping hole in to the bedroom... still have to spackle and sand 1 more time on the seams and then paint.... I'll get to it....



So, that's about it for the recap... now that spring has sprung, there should be much more outdoor activities and opportunities for pictures and funny stories... talk to you all soon.



Scott

Friday, January 15, 2010

Do what you can... ***UPDATED***


****Since I have not updated the Blog in quite a while and unfortunate incidents occurred in Chile, I figured I would just update this part of the Blog and ask you to once again become aware of those who are in need of help. Please don't just sit back and figure that Chile 'is a much more affluent country so they can take care of themselves'... there are hundreds (probably thousands as we move forward) dead, tens of thousands homeless and without support. Anything we can do as a collective human race help someone in need is our responsibility in order to survive and promote good will for future generations... OK.. sorry to jump back up on a soap box for a little bit.. wait, no I'm not... I'm proud to get up on the soapbox.****
updated areas to donate.
So by now I am sure you have all heard of the devastation in Haiti.. .. without hopping up on a soap box, just asking people to help out however they can...


thay say that any amount will help, and sooner rather than later... some organizations that you may think about...

http://www.holtinternational.org/haiti/earthquake.shtml ... obviously this organization is close to our hearts... feel free to read some of the information and just click on the 'donate now!' area.

https://re.clintonfoundation.org/SSLPage.aspx?pid=3869 ...like him or not, former president Clinton's site


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!!




Well, well.. it's been a fun month or so since we last spoke. Another birthday and 2 holidays have come and gone and everyone is getting along nicely.. at least for the most part as long as you don't ask me on a daily basis and just take the whole picture...

Anyway, Olivia had her 9th.. that's right 9th birthday celebration.. of course it was something of a tri-celebration because we did cupcakes and special dinner on her birth date, followed by more cake on Thanksgiving day, and finally a trip into NYC to see Shrek with her mom and friend from school... overall I think she enjoyed herself. Oh, and that's right, the following week we went back to NYC so she and Kira could go to the American Girl store to spend her b-day money.. and I took the boys with Grammy around Rockefeller center followed by a quick trip to Aunt Carol and Uncle Henry's house for their annual holiday gathering. It's been a few years since we have been able to make it, and holy moly, I forgot what we missed; there had to have been at least 20 different hot chafing trays to choose from - lest we EVER underestimate Auntie and Unc.

So it wasn't necessarily a white Christmas, but came pretty close considering the white BLAST we got the week before Christmas. And this was one of those storms that actually swamped us here at the Jersey shore more than the more northern and western parts of the area. I think the final total was about 20-22" in my yard with 3-4' drifts. This used to be a chair on the back porch. So it took a little while to shovel on out... and with some planning, the neighborhood finally got cleared out. And of course you cannot have a little hard work without rewards. Good thing we didn't have to get out the back door for anything. At least the kids got out to play a little before it got too heavy... of course they would make a beeline for the play set after they were told not too... but also had a little snowball fight.. and yes that's Cooper under that hat. And alas Tae would spring forth doing his best Randy imitation from A Christmas Story.... he lasted just about as long in this suit to take the picture and WAS NOT happy out in the snow. And what the heck.. a little play out in the snow and this is what happens???? Lightweights, everyone of them... Cooper after day 2 of hanging out in the snow... Kira at the other end of the couch... and Tae (who didn't even go out day 2) with Olivia.

So we are thinking that Cooper and Tae are getting along OK... unsolicited hugs??? yeah that's a good start, but for Cooper to actually initiate the sharing of his trains??? that's amazing!! And tell me what's better then the pure laughter of a baby???

So on to Christmas.... and the annual construction of the gingerbread house... other than the Amityville Horror white bleeding walls, I think it came out OK. And the multicultural wall of holiday cheer... and the tree with what is classified as 'scaling back this year'... HA!!!! But it's all worth it in the morning when you see the wonderment of the kids... And while we were happy that Grammy was able to get out and see the 'down south' Sattan, she was missed.. but the kids had a good time opening her packages.. Cooper loved his monorail... and of course Tae loved the bag that his gift came in... Do you think that Kira likes her new American Girl - 'Julie'? And talk about a couple of lady killers that are going to cause some trouble when they grow up... Cooper and his cousin Bradley.. or 'little Ron' as we sometimes call him (for those who know Ron and I, they cannot argue with that classification).

So on to New Years.. and the celebration was anything but that... we went up to the mountains to spend New Years with Tanny at his Pocono 'chalet'. Sorry no significant pictures to share except for a quick video of Kira trying to ski... please forgive the poor quality because it was taken on my phone while trying to follow her down the hill. This was her only her second day after spending the first day just tucked into PopPop tandem skiing; I just took my board off, walked her halfway up the hill, got her in position and let her go. Hopefully next time she will learn how to turn.... and I wish I had some more video because Olivia is a regular ski monster now after only 2 or 3 times hitting the slopes between last year and this year. At this rate Cooper is next and we should have Tae on a board before he is out of diapers.

So finally, as I sit here with post-holiday blinders on trying to avoid having to pack everything up... I have to share our most recent awesome bit of information. So the mail man dropped off a nice package to us care of Tae's foster family. It contained a wonderful folk tale book on both Hangul and English along with a personal note saying how happy the foster mother is that Tae has adapted so well to our family... she actually follows our blog ( to Jo Young-sun we say annyeong haseyo and komapsumnida). And the best part was that we got to see our little boy on the 2010 Holt Korea calendar. When Susan and I first met Tae, we were told that he had pictures taken to be in the Holt International calendar which obviously made us so proud and excited. However, when we bought the Holt International calendar this year, we were so disappointed to see that Tae was not in it. However, we had a suspicion that possibly there was a Korea-specific calendar of which they were speaking. Lo and behold... we received it in our package today.... Mr. February....

Sooo... OK... all caught up now.... off to put something together for dinner.... talk again soon.

Scott

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Wait!!! It's not winter yet...

Soooo... I suppose the weather idiots actually got one right.... we've got snow!!!!

Hopefully this is a quick enough turn around time for you guys...

So the nice peaceful view out of the front of the house.... and out the back of the house.. it does look nice though when it first comes down, doesn't it?

So we sent the young'uns out... or at least they asked... doesn't look like a lot of fun is being had thought, does it?

Cooper started out enjoying it... who knows what he was doing, but we hope it was a snowball... Liv got him going... Of course, they have to look to get in more trouble... they were told to stay off the equipment...

And of course you ask, where it Tae? Well, it took that long just to get him into his snow suit. And this lasted about 10 seconds because once we got outside, it was a screamfest.... Oh well, maybe we'll get a little sledding in.

To all.. please have a Happy Holiday Season!!!!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Flu-cation 2009




... or how I spent my teachers' convention



.... or 8 days of love, peace, and harmony {hrmph...}in the happiest place on earth (too mushy?!?)



.... or whatever... just a general recap of Disney 09.




so I suppose I will try to squeeze 30 minutes or so between diaper changes, toy fights, meals, work projects, and everything else to get some updated info available in order to keep the masses - and you know who you are ;-) - happy, so on with the show.


Anyway, you will notice many of these pictures have only a portion of the brood, and either Susan or me because we tried to do as much as possible with everyone while the infirmed were resting in the villa.


So for the basic story... we had a lovely flight out of AC to Orlando - I mean you can't beat it... out the door at 4 AM and in warm, sunny Orlando by 8:15, the gates of Disney by 9, and in the pool by 10. Of course it goes downhill from there as we shuttled Olivia over to Urgent Care (PS - not so urgent as much as a walk-in clinic for those who may be interested) by 2 PM that afternoon.... 2 1/2 hours and a positive H1N1 later, and it was bedbound with Tamiflu. In the meantime, the rest of the crew had plans for dinner. I guess Tae wasn't so happy about it, but definitely priceless. Otherwise, Kira had fun with Tigger, Eyeore, and Piglet. Even Cooper enjoyed a visit from Piglet. And it seems the only way for Tae to have fun with the characters is when they sneak up on him... otherwise, characters are persona non grata in Tae's world.

And we always have to greet Ariel when we get in... just has to do it in shifts this year. And a lot of time was spent by the pool this year... Tae's first experience was a positive one. Kira without swimmies this year, YAHOO!!! and Liv just before the plummet and relinquishment to isolation. Even Mimi got a few hours out poolside.

So while the sick rested, the others got out for a little fun.... you would think by this look that Kira was heading into some hugely scary ride, and not small world. Fan favorite, the Carousel, was another stop along the way for Cooper and Kira. Minnie's house offered some entertainment for all. Toontown has the slow pace for the kids.. and I just love pictures of the castle.. just reminds me of fun and happy times. And for Tae's first, time he seemed to find fun, even when waiting for his brother and sisters to come off a ride... cell phones offer wonderful entertainment... and things are much better when you can stand and walk around; Pooh's playland offered a nice diversion... and I know I am biased, but I happen to think the kid is darned cute. But I guess all the time in the room wasn't all bad as Olivia was able to garner

'Artist of the Day' at the Beach Club... and Kira was all proud to be sister of the artist of the day.

And finally, it was nice when we could all get out and participate a little. And of course, this tends to be when the boys are best behaved... go figure. Woody and Jessie take time to welcome the girls. Nice breakfast with the characters at Chef Mickey's. Donald Duck welcomes the kids... and of course Aunt Babette's favorite, Goofy!! Minnie shares a moment between sugary breakfast vittles. And Pluto joined the crowd... but don't interrupt Cooper's breakfast. Even waiting for everyone to gather together is enjoyable.. Mimi and Liv share a moment.

And what would a trip to Disney be without the morning ritual of dad taking the kids for a walk to the Boardwalk Bakery for breakfast and a little exercise. Funny to see the difference between the morning before daylight savings time, and only a few days later when the clocks changed. A night our for Mom and Dad (and Tae...)... yeah, that's right notice the Eagle jersey on the day of their huge destruction of the Giants... {insert loud, boisterous laugh!!)

And of course, the fun of Halloween.... Can you determine the theme??? Cooper, possibly the first Korean-American Peter Pan?? And Tae, one of Captain Hook's pirate henchmen. Me and my boys... Olivia as Tinkerbell after only 2 days on Tamiflu... and of course we have to have the one who has to be different... Kira as Cinderella. Nice to see the boys share a peaceful moment. And how great for Aunt Babette and Uncle Donald to join the party. Mom as Wendy with Cinderella. Hmmm... Aunt Babette as Goofy, Uncle Donald as Grumpy.. what's that phrase about perception and reality becoming one in the same??? And the kids enjoyed the fountains outside Wolfgang Puck's. And what's the deal, why won't anyone come close to me?!?!? And yes, real men wear silk dickies, you got a problem with that? And perhaps a few of my favorite pictures of all time... mom and Tae just having a few quiet moments. How cool is this picture??

And finally, nothing like a few sisterly moments.... and some quiet reflection. Tae says "I hope you enjoyed the update... Love You ALL!!!"

For those of you who haven't completely bugged out looking at all the pictures, or are just gluttons for punishment, feel free to check out the remainder of the slideshow.

For now, I bid you adieu.... be well.... will check back in with Olivia's 9th (yeah that's right 9th!!! birthday), Thankgiving, and winter holidays.

S

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Apples, pumpkins, and a tractor....


Sorry again it's been a while since logging in, but I will continue to use my built-in excuse of the kids and work keeping me busy. Don't like that excuse??? Well, by all means, this is a free society so please don't hesitate to fill in the blank for me....

Anyway, now that we have gotten through birthday central there is not a whole lot to report at the present time. Therefore, the report of our trip to the farm will have to suffice until the next birthday, vacation, and holiday events take place.


So we packed up the whole clan, Grammy included, and headed out to Conte Farms for fresh apples and pumpkins. The kids were all excited and ready to go. We met Uncle Ron and Aunt Nancy with cousin Bradley and hit the tractor {left to right front row - Mom, Tae, Cooper, Kira, Olivia, Bradley - back row Aunt Nancy, Grammy, and another guy we don't know - me and Uncle Ron taking pictures}. As we headed out to the fields, everyone seemed to enjoy the ride.. Bradley enjoyed the company of his cousins..... Tae seemed to enjoy his first tractor ride... Kira was all smiles .... and Cooper just took it all in...


The apples were not very plentiful and we had to search and search and the only real good ones were way up high... Liv did her best to get us some good ones.

...and on to the pumpkins... from this photo it would seem that these two little cuties sprouted out of the vines like the fruits next to them... but while their sisters were off trying to find the perfect pumpkin.. these 2 thought it would be a good idea to sit and eat some of the apple bounty we just parlayed...

So in other news, Tae does seem to be adjusting much better each day... I think the extra time home with mom before she went back to school really helped. He is now affectionately dubbed Tae-kenstein because he is up and walking, but very much like the Peter Boyle-inspired monster (enjoy the entire hilarious scene) in 'Young Frankenstein'. Anyway, I digress... like I was saying, he does seem to be enjoying himself..... just getting his way around .... and full of smiles....

And Cooper... hmm, what do we say about Cooper... I suppose this is what happens when you get a little too out of hand around this house and I have to take care of things.... NO, just kidding, but it does remind you as to why you should not leave your purse around with makeup accessible. There really is nothing more to say after that...

Oh well, I'll finish this post up for now... g'night.

S

Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy birthday to you....

OK... 3 out four down and 1 more to go in November. I already posted the link to Kira's family birthday party (see post below for Kodak website link). So here are a few from Cooper's 3rd birthday party and Kira's 'friend' party held at a local restaurant/ amusement area.





so you can see that a good time by the little birthday boy and he loves his cake which usually ends up all over him with a big smile... And of course I know I am biased, but he really is one handsome little devil, isn't he???


And for the rest of the pictures from the day's event... you will notice little brother Tae having a good time, cousin Luke reading some books to Tae, sisters Kira and Olivia helping out with gift opening (of course...), grandparents galore, cousin Bradley and Zach somewhere in there as well.. enjoy....


And Kira's party went well.. she enjoyed the time with her sister. And then the crazy cube was fun for all.... Cooper and Liv exploring the fun bubble.Link.. the always fun ball pit.. and poor Cooper took a little convincing from big sister Olivia to go into the play area. And there are other pictures of Kira with some of her classmates, but don't feel comfortable posting them for obvious reasons.... but I will say she had a wonderful time with her new 'school' friends.

For now, I need to get my beauty sleep.. A LOT of beauty sleep.

S