Wednesday, February 27, 2013


I had to share a few conversations with my girls over the past few weeks before I forget them. I'm not sure what it is, but this kid is cracking me up lately! She is so innocent, it's adorable.

Ava has really been into The Muppets Take Manhattan lately. Well, at the end of the movie, Kermit and Miss Piggy get married.
Ava: Hey mom, when you and dad got married...he was the frog and you were the pig.

Over breakfast one morning:
Ava: Mom, who created me?
Mom: God created all people, honey.
Ava: Well, did he use gloves when he put my bones in?
Mom: Ummmmmm....I'm sure he did, baby.
Ava: I'm not a baby.

At lunch at the Cheesecake Factory, I was chatting with friends. I realized Ava was standing behind me and we were back to back.
Mom: Ava, what are you doing?
Ava: I'm staring at peoples.

This one may be a little TMI, but it's worth it. I take a medication that has stopped my monthly cycles. This next bit tells me how much privacy I have.
Shopping at Target, walking down aisles and we come to the feminine products.
Ava: Mom, you don't use these anymore for your peach!

Same shopping trip. I'm a big fan of the Twilight series. Everytime I go to the movies at opening night, I get a drink in a souvenier cup. John likes to drink out of the cups because they are pretty big. Breaking Dawn 2 is coming out on video so there is a big poster hanging up with Edward and Bella.
Ava: Dad! Look! It's your favorite cup!

I'm sure there are more but these are my favorites lately!! Love this kid!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

New Friends!

We had a fantastic weekend! Friday night we laid low, going to bed at 9:30. We finally got our On Demand to work and watched The Odd Life of Timothy Green. Yes, I cried. ALOT. Especially at the very end. I won't tell you but oh, my heart.

Saturday was a busy day for us! But it was the best day I've had in a long time! It started super early for me as I wanted to be up showered and ready for Chloe's grooming appointment. I dropped off the sweet pup at 8 am and picked her up at 9. She is sporting a super cute and clean cut! She smells so good!!
We took Chloe back home, picked up Daddy and headed to Columbus. Mommy was able to coordinate a visit with two special families. We met Shawn and Jennifer Metz with Niubei and Noah and then new friends The Wilkinson's, Shawn, Theresa, and Mali! We've never officially met them but the Mama's are friends on FB. All of us went throught the same agency and our girls are right around the same age! These super sweet girls from across the world brought us all together. The power of adoption and everything involved will never cease to amaze me!

Theresa and I have been talking back and forth for awhile and couldn't believe the similaries between Ava and Mali. She actually has a picture on FB that I had to do a double take because I thought it was Ava!! Here are a couple pictures of the girls together! Mali wasn't too thrilled about the pictures but some bribery goes a long way...
Ava loved her some Noah!! She loves babies! But she kept trying to pick him up and he only weighs 10 lbs less than her! Haha!!
 We went to Polaris mall and let the kids play and climb all over the animals!
And the bribery mentioned above? Four year olds at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory with credit cards?!?! But we got some super cute pictures, so all was good!!

We had a wonderful time with our friends, but it was time to say goodbye and head to our next stop on the trip! We went to see Uncle Carl!!! We picked him up to go to Target. Yes, we have Target's in Toledo, but now this Target carries Peppa Pig clothing. Not in the best part of town, but we got the Peppa shirt and even an Easter dress!! I can check that one off my list...Afterwards we went back to Uncle Carl's for a few minutes and he gave Ava some treats for the ride home.
She ate the entire way home and then asked what was for dinner? Not one to miss a meal, my girl... Daddy and I kept talking the whole way home about how much fun we had!
Today we ran some errands and used some gift cards that we've had for awhile. And even bought a new gate. Chloe is doing so well that we decided to give her a little more room. She now is able to roam in the kitchen as well! Go Chloe!!
Thanks to our friends and family for allowing us to have a great weekend with you all!!

Thursday, February 21, 2013


My mom and my husband have told me I need to slow down. And I think I need to take their advice. Reason being, here is my night last night.

Ava had gymnastics at 6.
Chloe had puppy school at 6.
John worked until 6.
I coordinated with my friend Heather to take Ava to gymnastics. Her daughter is in the same class, so we made plans that I would bring them all dinner and drop off Ava by 5:30. Chloe is at a puppy sitters and needs to be picked up at 5:15. The puppy sitter and Heather live about 5 miles from each other. No big deal right? I'll leave at work at 4:30 and everyone will be where they need to be and what they need to be doing on time. And then everything spiraled out of control.

4:35 - I get to my car and see my car keys sitting on my passenger seat. My car is locked. With the keys in it.
4:35:30 -- Lots of cuss words escaping my mouth
4:37 -- Call my mom to come and rescue me. She said I'll leave right now and be there in 10 mins and she'll bring in Ava.
4:38 - 5:15 -- Impatiently waiting for my mom
5:25 -- Drop my mom back off at her work as she had to work late for a call a thon.
5:30 -- McDonalds drive thru (text Heather I'm running late), my mom calls to inform me that she left her cell phone in her car and needs it for call a thon.
5:31 - 5:36 -- Wait for mom in McDonalds parking lot for her and her friend to come pick up said phone
5:36 -- finally on our way to pick up Chloe who I'm 20 mins late picking up and still have to drop off Ava to Heather so she can feed 3 girls before 6:00 gymnastics.
5:37 -- Ava pukes in the car. (seriously??) We are in my mom's car so I have nothing. Ava has to sit in puke.
5:45 -- Arrive at Heather's to drop off her daughter's food so they can eat and be at gymnastics in 15 mins.
5:50 -- Pick up Chloe 35 mins late. Thank goodness the puppy sitter is super nice!!
5:55 -- Finally home (obviously skipping puppy school since I have a puky kid)
5:55 - 6:30 -- Clean up Ava, clean up my mom's car, feed Chloe and take her out, change my clothes, grab a quick bite to eat, go through mail, throw away trash that came in mail
6:30 -- Leave to pick up my mom from her call a thon and go get my car at Owens Corning
7:30 -- arrive home and go to give Chloe her medicine, can't find it.
7:35 -- realize I must have thrown it away, open garbage can and John has taken out the trash (the one time I'm mad at him for doing so)
7:36 -- rummaging through garbage bins and gross garbage bags and locate medicine.
7:40 -- Go back in the house and SCRUB my hands.
7:45 -- Give Chloe her meds and finally sit down to relax.

Ugh...Today started out a little better if you don't count me getting my coffee out of the Keurig without taking the lid off my cup first. But I have a special token with me today!

Ava and I have on matching bracelets!! Her idea to wear them. Love that girl!!

My mom thinks I have too much going on that my brain isn't functioning in the present. It's too far ahead of me. I think she may be on to something....

Oh, and Ava?? She is perfectly fine. All I can think it maybe a little car sick?

Chloe's Parents

I was able to do some digging and I found pictures of Chloe's parents. Her dad is a Labradoodle and her mom is a Poodle. So our Labradoodle is more Doodle than Lab! Which explains all of the curl!!
Didn't these dogs produce the cutest puppy???
This is a picture of Chloe at 8 weeks before we got her! Unfortunately, our little puppy has been having some issues. I've always had dogs, but never puppies. I know they go to the bathroom ALOT, but Chloe was out of control. I would take her out and she would go 3-4 times in a matter of ten minutes and then come in and have an accident in the house. I talked to a few people about how much she was going and I was told that wasn't normal. So I called the vet. Diagnosis? UTI. Poor girl. She is now on an antibiotic and we can already see the difference. Other than that, she is doing really well. She is now responding to her name and is super playful. Unfortunately, there is alot of puppy biting (especially with Ava) and we are working to stop that. It's taking training on Chloe and Ava's part. Ava caves into her which gives Chloe more opportunity. But this morning, Chloe went up to Ava and just licked her. Progress? Hopefully!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Cheer for A Cure!

This weekend we had Cheer for A Cure! This is a cheerleading competition started by a girl I went to high school with. Her mom was the Genoa cheerleading coach for years and passed from lung cancer. Her daughter, Maria, started this competition in her moms honor. It has grown so much over the years and now is nationwide! There are competitions all over the US!! This is a great cause, 100% of money raised goes to cancer research. How can you not love that?? While this was a super busy day for our family, it also marked the end of Ava's cheerleading season. Bittersweet. We're still on the fence if she will do it again next season. She loves competitons but doesn't care for practices. But she has been rocking some cartwheels lately, so we'll see. We have time to decide.

My BFF, Amy and I worked the Cheer Gear shop! It was crazy, busy, but we had so much fun!!
After the competition and much needed naps for everyone, these two super cute little girls went to Nana's for a sleepover...

And these two adults went on a MUCH NEEDED date night. We went to dinner at Abuelo's and back home to watch a movie. I've been wanting to see The Odd Life of Timothy Green for ages and it is on our On Demand.

Well, we came home, got into jammies, washed faces, brushed teeth, grabbed pillow and blanket and settled in to watch the movie. Guess what? On Demand was broken. I'm beginning to wonder if I'm meant to watch this movie!! Super bummed...

Stay warm!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Show and Tell - Chloe version

I have to share a story about Ava to get to the point of this post. Yesterday and today, Ava has BEGGED me to stay home with Chloe. Unfortunately, schedules haven't permitted that to happen. Well, it's been a super busy week for me! Between Chinese New Years, Valentine's Day, Cheer for a Cure, and puppy training, I've been a little overwhelmed. I decided to re-prioritize my schedule to relieve the stress. Therefore I had to cancel some plans for tonight. Anyhow, I digress...

I was on the phone with my mom whining about how much I had going on and guess which child from the daycare walked in claiming to be sick? That's right, Ava Kate. Let's add sickness on to this. Convinced she had strep, I cleared my schedule for the rest of the week, brought home tons of work, planning on working from home the rest of the week.

Well, I walked in to get Ava and she started jumping up and down "I get to play with the dog". Completely faking. Completely healthy. Completely scamming. Who learns that at 4 years old??? Although, I can't complain to have a few extra hours at home. :)

Since we had some extra time, Ava begged me to take Chloe to school to show her friends. And I caved. I like to show her off, too!! The kids loved her and Ava was so proud!! Nana had to help keep the kids in line as they were all crowding Chloe and she was starting to get scared. Poor girl!

Update on Chloe

Chloe has officially been a part of our family for four days. It is slow going as she is all puppy!! Potty training, nipping, get it. Tomorrow we are going to a puppy class at PetSmart and we also had a guy over today that is a retired dog trainer. He was here for an hour and she was responding to him by name, sat down, laid down, and walked up steps. Really??? We had her for four days and NOTHING. But he gave us some great advice, great tips, and the best part? John feels so much better!! Today was a great day! No accidents in the house and she laid in her cage by herself. Whoop, whoop!! Here's a sweet picture of her passed out in her cage.

Stay tuned! Everyday is a new day!!

Gung Hay Fat Choy!!!

While Chinese New Year was never a holiday we celebrated much, we go hard core these days!! We have a great group of family and friends that join us! Our celebrations started on Sunday with our FCC celebration at the Hong Kong. This was a new place for our group and we enjoyed it tremendously! Nana, JoJo, and Aunt Emily joined us!

On Monday, Ava took all kinds of goodies to school! I made her snake cookies, I thought they turned out pretty well!
We also took juice boxes, red envelopes for all of the kids, and a book to explain the holiday. She was so giddy on the way to school! Haha! Monday night we went to dinner with the family at Empire. Ava tried her hand at chopsticks. She didn't do too shabby...:)

From our family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful and safe Year of the Snake!!

Ava and Emmett

Saturday night, Emmett's mommy and daddy went on a much needed date night. And we were blessed to have Emmett come and spend a few hours with us!! Ava loves having him over. Although, I'm not sure if she likes to micro manage him or truly enjoy playing with him. Haha!! We had lasagna for dinner and even did a few art projects!!

I hope Emmett has as much fun as we did with him!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happy Birthday, Jorge!

Jorge is a little boy that was in Ava's room. Jorge and his mama's lives were ended way too soon a few months back. Anyhow, Saturday was Jorge's birthday and his grandma put together a balloon release. She invited all of the kids from the daycare so I wanted to be sure Ava was there. It was too special to not go. And I think it was good for Ava too!

Before he passed, Jorge had asked for an Angry Birds theme. So what better way to honor this little life but finding the biggest Angry Birds balloon??

Many were gathered around Jorge's favorite spot where he used to hunt frogs...

We all sang Happy Birthday and then let the balloons go. It was AWESOME!!

All the way to heaven!
Happy 1st Heaven Birthday, Jorge!! We think of you often and hope you and your Mama are celebrating the day together!


Have you been wondering? Have you thought about our secret at all? Well, if we are friend on Facebook, you know. If SHE is!!
Meet Chloe Houghtaling!! She is a 9 week old Labradoodle puppy. It was a very big decision for our family. Let's just say it took some encouraging for Daddy! But we decided it was the best for Ava. She is an absolute natural animal lover. She will walk up to the biggest dog and just lay some smooches on it!!! While the first night went super well, it's been a little difficult this weekend. Potty training is hard!! We've heard many different opinions and want to do the best for family. We are totally open to any suggestions. We got some great ones today and we have started to implement them. Here are some more pictures of our new family member. To say Ava is in Love, would be a complete understatement!!

Isn't she gorgeous??? I know I'm partial, but pictures do not do this dog justice!!!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Cheering, Jumpin', and A Baby Shower

We had a fun and cold weekend!!! We kicked off Friday with the Genoa Mini's cheering at halftime of the basketball game. She has one more competition (Cheer for A Cure) and then she's done with cheerleading. She has really enjoyed it!

After dinner we headed to The Keg, a local pizza joint, with some friends! We had a great time and enjoyed the pizza!
Saturday morning was swim lessons...And check out my girl!!! I know they are blurry. Sorry! She was so proud of herself!

Sunday was my cousin Amanda's baby shower. She is having a boy in March. It was a moustache theme! 

 Showing off her super cute dress! It actually has her name embrodiered but you can't see it!
 I really wanted to get a picture of Ava and Amanda together. But....this is what happens when the party falls in the middle of nap time. Haha!
Hope your weekend was just as great!!