Sunday, February 27, 2011


We had another busy weekend. I have to laugh that Justin is beyond exhausted at the end of every Saturday and Sunday with the kids. He juggles the girls, going to the gym, family outings, dinner, bedtime, date night or adult movie night at home (HA! I meant grown-up movie night like Inception over Toy Story 3). Days at home with the family require more physical stamina than his days in the office. Sunday he even took the kids to the park for an hour so I could do our taxes (thank you Turbotax and thank you sweet house that is our rental property right now). Justin is an awesome Dad and husband to put up with me, our two girls, a female dog, and our helper on a daily basis. That's a lot of estrogen to deal with.The girls are busy and cute as ever. Adelaide soared through another ballet class on Sunday. I caught her shrugging off another little girl who was tapping her on the shoulder to get her attention while teacher Alice was talking. She's so focused it's crazy. Luckily I caught her smiling and giggling along with the other girls too. As long as she gives me a big long tight hug before class to "squeeze the nerves out" she's fine.

Right now the world is her make believe oyster. Her imaginary games and worlds are amazingly detailed and layered. One minute I'm the queen with a thorn in my kitty paw, the next I'm the doctor checking her newborn baby's ears for fever. I love this stage where anything and everything can be a play thing.

Addie's extremely perceptive. She's always asking questions and making clever arguments about why things should be the way she wants them. We think she might make a good lawyer with all the rationalizing she does with us. It cracks me

Arabella is one clever little girl. She has tried to tick us out of giving her a bath at night by claiming she has to pee so she'll get taken out of the water and on the potty. The other night she upped her game by asking to brush her teeth while on the pot and then saying "night night" after done brushing. I guess she was hoping we didn't notice she still needed to be bathed. Our little Bean is so happy for the most part but still throws monumental tantrums. The worst are in the elevator as we hit our floor and she refuses to stand up; I'm holding the elevator doors, willing her to stand. It's insane.She's entirely obsessed with airplanes still. So much so that at dinner last night out for pizza she asked over and over for an airplane to play with (which I had forgotten at home). Justin knew we wouldn't get peace to eat until he took her upstairs to the Toy's R Us and bought a Matchbox car airplane. After their little errand, she gobbled down her meal while flying her little metal 747 in the air. Airplanes are the end all be all for this girl right now.

Arabella's discovered her elbows and that she can hold up her two fingers and count "1, 2". She's pretty remarkable. The countdown to leave Manila has begun. Justin and I are longing for the United States right now. Four months feels like a long wait now that the things about this country that used to be mildly annoying are now monumentally maddening. It might be best if we hole ourselves up in our condo for the next few months so we don't blow our top on some unassuming stranger who's just being completely Filipino. My husband quoted me on Facebook the other day after saying "every third person I see, I want to punch." We were at the park and a million things were bugging me; the Filipino shuffle on the sidewalks, the fried Bangus smell in the market, the squashed cockroaches under my feet, etc. It wasn't one of my finest moments.

12 more weeks.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Chatuchak weekend market

You can't hit Bangkok without spending some time at the famous Chatuchak weekend market. It's immense. So huge that it would take numerous weekends to get through the entire thing.

Sunday we rode the apartment building's tuk tuk (Addie was in love with the tuk tuk)to the subway (Bella's turn to be in love)then a short walk to the very large and extremely confusing market to get some souvenirs. It was a very hot day and this was not a kid friendly activity so we really pushed the girls patience in the few hours we spent wandering the stalls. Bella was mad that she wasn't allowed to walk around and wander on her own.drinking Thai tea (this lady made the best Thai iced tea I've ever tasted)and checking out the sites.In the end we were all sweaty and hungry and ready for a cool ride on the subway back home.

Thai food

The evening after our long day in Ayutthaya we let the girls play at the apartment building's amazing playground. It made me wish we could have an outdoor, covered play area like this in Manila. Sadly, I have never seen a playground as nice as this one in the Philippines. "Four more months" has become my mantra to keep me from screaming in frustration about this place lately.After a good hour running around the playground (how do they have the energy after a full morning in the sun with elephants and Buddha hunting?); we walked around the corner to a little outdoor Thai restaurant and ordered just about one of everything on the menu. Stir fried morning glory, panaang chicken, stir fry vegetables, larb gai, green curry, Thai iced tea all around and Singha for the guys. We stuffed ourselves. I took a picture of evidence.Bella got a sip of the Singha and just kept going back for more. Just another piece of evidence that this little girls is going to be a wild one. No screwed up pucker face at all. Just a big gulp and a sigh of deliciousness afterward. Uh oh! The girls are OBSESSED with elephants now. And who wouldn't be?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


After our elephant adventure we paid a small fee (50 Baht, which is like $1.50) to walk through the Ayutthaya Historical Park (1 hour drive north of Bangkok) and view the gorgeous old temple ruins. I couldn't believe we were allowed to walk where ever we wanted and wander as long as we liked. The girls climbed steps and inspected Buddhas. Addie collected flowers to put in their "criss cross applesauce" legs. She was so reverent about it. The temples were amazing along with all the ruin walls and pathways, Buddhas, and structures. It was extremely hot that day and we were getting ready for lunch so we all quickly melted into the ground. This was definitely the most historically beautiful place I've seen in SE Asia.Buddha AddieIce cream coma.

no more diapers

I had to interrupt our Bangkok trip with the news of Arabella being potty trained. For the past few weeks she asks to do her business on the potty whether she's wearing a diaper or panties. While in Thailand we actually had to tell her it was OK to go in her diaper because we couldn't get to a potty at that moment. She stays dry in her panties all day and even when we are out and about playing etc. She still gets a diaper at bedtime and nap time but often wakes up to tell us she pee peed (not awesome). It's extremely impressive since she won't be two until the end of April and has basically potty trained herself. Yay for Arabella. She's such a big girl. And yay for us not having to change poopy diapers anymore.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

elephant rides

Two things we promised the girls we'd see in Thailand were elephants and palaces. Addie was excited about both until she saw in person how large the elephants were (and then she was a tad disappointed there wouldn't be any princesses in the palaces).

Adelaide had a breakdown of sorts that's pretty typical of our notoriously fearful and cautious three and a half year old. When the elephants trumpeted loudly she screamed horror movie style. In the end, I took her to the bathroom and we had a chat about how riding the elephants in Thailand was one of the reasons we took this trip this weekend and unfortunately sitting this one out was out of the question for her so the quicker she got on the elephant with her Dad the quicker she could get off again. Bella didn't have these apprehensions. She's still too young and for the most part seemed to think the elephants were pretty cool. The baby elephant especially. A short while into the elephant ride Addie loosened her grip on Justin and started to enjoy the lumbering ride. Bella sat with me on the elephant and I have to say it was a tad precarious at times trying to hold tightly onto her and snap a few photos with my other hand. When I get the awesome pictures Matt took I'll have to share those as well.The view from our ride It was steamy hot that day and the girls were pink in the cheeks and thirsty from the elephant rides. It was unlike any experience I had ever had. One we will have to remind our girls they had through pictures. Thailand just gets better and better.

blasting through Bangkok

We spent the past long weekend in Bangkok, Thailand and fell in love with this country. I know this is terrible to say, and maybe it speaks to my short-timers syndrome I'm having about the last four months living in Manila; but Bangkok is everything Manila is not. We found Bangkok to be cleaner, less traffic, more organized, full of culture and history, and easy to navigate with the amazing Bangkok Transit System subway. Thai food has always been our favorite international cuisine so we tried to eat our way through the city. Thai food is beyond amazing when your in Thailand and it's just called food.

We arrived at the airport on Friday morning and Bella was in heaven with all the airplanes to watch. The Korean kids were in heaven with Addie and Bella to watch. The flight was rather uneventful. The girls were antsy but well behaved. Our host for the weekend was our good friend Matt who we've known since our college years. Matt was a wonderful host and guide. He picked us up in Bangkok and let us infiltrate his car, his apartment, and his life with our two children for the weekend and was extremely gracious about it. We couldn't have asked for a better family weekend getaway.Friday night we walked to the fashion district so Justin could get measured and fitted for some custom dress shirts and then grabbed some (Thai) food for dinner. We crashed early after our day of travels; eager for our first full day on Saturday in Thailand.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Lucy's Valentine

Everyone needs a Valentine.- Adelaide Rose, age 3 3/4 years

love birds

Happy St. Valentines Day

Our girls woke up to find their own sweet pair of love birds for Valentines Day. Addie claimed the pink bird as her own and named her Lisa. The red one got a chocolate croissant kiss from Bella.Addie chose her favorite pink dress, purple bow headband and sparkly shoes; "cause it's Valentines Day" for school today. She hand wrote her name on 18 of the 20 Valentines for her classmates and teachers this morning.

I feel really blessed to have three wonderful people to say "I love you" to and give a big hug and kiss. I won't lie, the kisses in return were pretty special too.