Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Please oh please look at mommy and let me take your picture.

Oh thank you! There's that sweet face I was looking for. Let us have a little picnic in the backyard.
You would rather run barefoot in the grass and look for more ripe tomatoes? Okay.
Finally you can get back to your books and stop getting your picture taken. I understand, but you're so sweet and you're growing so fast. Today you are 22 months! I love you Mags, thank you for letting your obsessive mommy take so many pictures of you.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Catching Up

Magnolia had her first Toddler Trails Nature Class at our local Wetland Reserve. While it was too buggy to take a hike, we spent most of the time in the butterfly garden touching and smelling things.
Here are the only pictures I took of Magnolia at our local pool this summer. She loved going swimming and would always get excited when I told her we were going. I will miss doing this with her because I just love to see the joy on her face being there!

Here are some pictures I took of Magnolia around the house one week. She insists that her lamb build blocks. She snaps beans and is really good at doing it. She sips her soup from a cup. She learns to sew with her new cardboard animals and does a lot of coloring.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I adore this dress that we bought for Magnolia in China. We bought it for her to wear on Red Couch Day. I loved the shop we bought it from. We even bought her another one to wear when she's older and a purse to match! Here she's wearing it exactly a year later in 2008 and it still fits!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

We had yet another wonderful weekend on the island. We went to a fair on Saturday where Magnolia got to eat (and drip) an ice cream cone on her dad's shoulders. When we pulled up to the ferry dock to get on the island this was the beautiful view to our right.
This was the beautiful view on our left.
Magnolia is SO happy to be back!
Magnolia stayed busy playing on the deck while we had our morning coffee.
Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Monday, August 11, 2008

We drove to Milwaukee on Saturday for a taste of a big city. We had dinner at the same place we had our rehearsal dinner 8 years ago. We were so impressed that Magnolia made it through all of the courses without a fuss. She loved the escargot, steak frites, and chocolate mousse! Our weekend was wonderfully relaxing. I've been glued to the t.v. watching and loving every minute of the Olympics...to think we were there a year ago! Magnolia especially loved watching the gymnastics. She did somersaults all over the living room floor!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

This was the second year that my family made the trip up to the island and we're so glad they did. We had SO much fun. Unfortunately we were missing two of my brothers and their families, hopefully they'll make it next year! The cousins have a blast and it's so much fun to see them play together. On our shore front we have a large rock that rises above the water's surface. Last year it was quickly named "Mermaid Rock" by all of the cousins. There was also a flat rock nearby that became "Cousins Rock." They were such appropriate names and they stuck. This year the kiddos were old enough to do some serious swimming at the famous Schoolhouse Beach named for the 1850 Schoolhouse nearby. It's famous for its smooth white rocks, there are only 4 beaches like this in the world. So aptly enough, this beach became "Schoolhouse Rock!" We had the best time there this year. Nana & Papa bought washable watercolor paints and a ton of paint brushes. The kids painted rocks and put them back in the water at the days' end.
Early this spring George and I found a beautiful plank of driftwood on our shore that obviously found it's way to us after the lake thawed. We decided it would make a great bar on our deck so we attached it to the banister, made a place for the umbrella, and added some bar stools. Since it was right off the kitchen we took down the screen so the window could open for service. The kids loved this and quickly named it the "Snak Shak." They made signs for it and one day even wrote out the menu. The Snak Shak was only open twice a day; lunch and dinner. The kids would line up outside and I would stand inside taking orders and shouting out the orders to the adults. After the orders were handed through the window, they sat at the bar with a beautiful view of the lake and NO parents!

With all of the little children at our place so suddenly the woodland fairies must have decided it too is a wonderful place to visit. One day without ANY warning a gold necklace was discovered in the woods. With the prospect of finding more jewels there were shrills of excitement and the gathering of the cousins to discuss this possibility. With further hunting more and more jewels and tiny little trinkets were discovered! This has boggled all of us and left us wondering how we came to such a good fortune of being visited by the woodland fairies!
On the last day we were all sad to part. While cars were getting packed and houses cleaned the kids decided to take their watercolor paints and do some face painting.

Bye! Hope to see you all again next year!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Picnic in the Park

Magnolia and I celebrated our Family Day yesterday by going to the park and having lunch. She's wearing this dress that I finally finished for her! It's been a crazy couple of weeks around here so I'm behind on postings. We had a fabulous week on the island with my family and Magnolia still calls out for her cousins hoping they'll come around the corner. I have a ton a photos and I will post them soon!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Dearest Magnolia,

One year ago today was the most magical and amazing days of our lives, the day we met you! You came through the doors in that building in Guangzhou and you were placed in my arms. I never even saw who it was who gave you to me. I couldn't take my eyes off of you. You were beautiful and sweet and we looked at each other like we had been waiting for each other our whole lives. You had such a look of sweet curiosity and even amusement on your face. You put your tiny little hand on my shoulder as if to say, "it's okay mama, I'm here now." You continued to stare at us and we stared at you. You were neither scared nor affected. The room fell quiet and I didn't hear anything but us telling you we were your mama and dada forever and ever. We took you back to the hotel and you fell asleep and slept soundly for 13 hours! We stayed up the whole night watching you and listening to you breathe. We couldn't believe we were all together. We couldn't believe we were complete. We still can't believe we have you. You are a constant joy in our lives and we have never been happier.

I love you sweet Magnolia. Happy Family Day! xoxo We celebrated with a Chinese dinner & cake.
We gave you your first gift that we collected in China to give to you on each anniversary. This year it was a bracelet made from Mahjong pieces.
Here we are one year later.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

John H. Lobeck

January 27, 1918 - July 28, 2008

I will miss my grandpa. He lived 90 years. I'm happy he's not suffering anymore. I'm sad he's gone. He was such a fun and energetic grandpa, a man seemingly made of steel. He survived the Depression and understandably the experience seemed to shape every aspect of him. He really taught us how to save, how to be frugal, and how to be so grateful for what we had. He had dentures for as long as I could remember and to our delight he would take them out and show what would happen if we didn't brush our teeth. Most of my childhood summers were spent at my grandparents lake cottage in Michigan where we learned to swim across the lake, fish, row a boat, catch minnows, roast marshmallows, and skin fish. My grandpa was the best fish fryer ever and we would look forward to his fried bluegill every summer. My grandpa loved his children and grandchildren very much and we loved him very much. He will be greatly missed by many. (The above photo is of my grandpa with my mother taken in 1944)My wedding day in 2000

The last time I saw my grandpa and the first time he met Magnolia, May 2008