Disney Day

March 14th, 2019
Waiting for the Parade
Plaza Inn lunch

Fell Off the Wagon

March 13th, 2019
Discipline Wagon

What does it mean when I’ve made all kinds of plans to be disciplined and I totally blow it? It’s not even one bite here and another there … it’s total and complete abandonment of my resolve. Now I know at what point I started to skid in the beginning of this journey. It’s still early enough that I can put on the brakes and start over. Tomorrow is a new day — with no mistakes in it, as Anne Shirley would say. May this be my attitude as the day begins again tomorrow.

45 Years Apart

March 12th, 2019
Two Years and One Month Old

I’ve seen people do this before – put their child’s baby picture next to theirs to see how much alike they are. Here’s mine and my daughter’s, exactly at age 2 and one month. I see the resemblance, although the closer I look, the less I see it. In the first place, I don’t really think she looks like me, even though the general consensus seems to suggest that she does.

In any case, I’m thankful and blessed to have this little girl in my life. She is so smart, so affectionate, so good-natured, so mellow, so playful, not to mention so girlie and sassy at times. I don’t think I was ever that extroverted when I was her age. My hope is to give her everything I never had. May the Lord grant me strength and wisdom to parent her in the best way I know how.

Bedtime Routine

March 11th, 2019

Our bedtime routine actually consists of brushing teeth, taking a bath, bedtime devotions/story, last drink of water, and last pee of the day. Every now and then, Daddy will indulge them in a game of horse where Papa is the horsey who throws them off into the bed. This is great fun for them.

Here they are, posing for the camera. Mei Mei has been learning how to look at herself in the mirror lately and make different faces. Ian is being his cheerful, goofy self. These two get along very well. They play together and enjoy each other, even when they fight during their play time.

7th Year

March 10th, 2019
2nd Haircut Ever!

I’d been holding off on her haircut for the longest time even though her hair has been unmanageable as of late. She’s been so stuck on being a princess with long hair that I was afraid to disillusion her! Today, after watching her daddy and brother get their haircuts, she agreed to sit and let the lady cut her hair, with the help of the iPhone video, of course. Here she is, being her brave self.

Fresh Haircuts

I must admit, I have very good-looking kids! Here they are with their fresh haircuts. Ian cried because he was so afraid of his neck itching from all that hair that gets stuck in his collar. I tried to talk him through the whole process and he eventually survived it. As for Joyanne, I have a feeling it’s going to be a lot easier not only to get her to get another haircut next time but to give her a bath before bed.

First comes marriage …

This display was at the entrance of Ikea today. Since it was also our 7th anniversary, we went ahead and commemorated our union in front of the sign. I wore my engagement ring for the occasion, too!

Then the baby carriage …

I said “yes” to the marriage, and thus, “yes” to the kids. What a life-changing event that was! And now, here we are, two makes four!

Sunset in OC

For our anniversary dinner, we sat atop the highest peak in our area, it seems, overlooking a beautiful sunset. This was taken at around 7 p.m., just when the sun was setting. I wasn’t necessarily feeling romantic, just hungry, but we couldn’t help but to feel the feels. It was an awesome sight.

Orange Hill Restaurant Date Night

After dinner, we went out, feeling close and cozy. The night was crisp and clear. It was also very cold (56 degrees). After this picture was taken, we appreciated the outside of the restaurant for just a few minutes before we headed inside and outside to the valet. It was a memorable way to celebrate our anniversary!

Detox Cleansing

March 9th, 2019

About two weeks ago, I followed this cleansing program that uses smoothies to control one’s diet. For 10 days, my body took nothing but smoothies recommended on this book, save for a few handful of snacks. At the end of the 10 days, I actually lost a little over 5 lbs. But more than losing weight, I felt I found a kind of “reset” button in my system. It was as though I was able to hold off all the bad stuff that I’ve allowed to invade body, mind, and heart. It’s been almost a week since I finished the smoothie challenge, and I’m still eating healthy and implemented a few more disciplines that I’m practicing for myself. Indeed, it’s been a lifestyle change … it’s been life-changing.

Garage Project

March 8th, 2019
Before …

This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. Today, perhaps because of the fast, I had the presence of mind and internal capacity to actually get into the project. It took a lot of physical and mental strength to get through it, but it shows that I’m getting stronger spiritually. Thank God! It also made me realize how much I still need to do.

Joyanne was so good the whole day. She played by herself, watched TV, ate, and looked for things to do by herself. Every now and then, she would ask me to play with her. She looked for me when she was bored. I’d spend a few minutes with her at a time during breaks from my project. I’m so proud of how independent she is. Though at one point during her play, she said, “I cannot play with you because I’m busy.” I’m sure she got that from me!

and After

It felt good to see the before-and-after shots. I feel a great sense of accomplishment. But this is only half of it. I still have more to do. Hopefully, the momentum will get me to where I need to be to finish.

After dinner, we headed to the mall to take a walk. It was windy and chilly outside so it was nice to be indoors. Joyanne had been asking to ride “the firetruck” just like before. “After the bathroom, we ride the firetruck, ok?” She must’ve learned to negotiate from her brother. Luckily, when we came down, there were two free carts waiting for us to take them.

For the first time in a long time, I felt lighter and freer as we walked in the mall. No strollers, no diapers, no high chair. I feel our little ones are now fully functioning human beings. It’s like we graduated into another phase in our responsibility as parents. What a feeling!

Walk in the Neighborhood

March 7th, 2019
Cloudy Day

It has become an almost daily routine. After breakfast, we would make one circle around our neighborhood. When Ian is in school, it would just be the two of us. When he’s around, it slows the pace but they have a lot more fun. Today was a cloudy day, comfortable and brisk.

Some of the things they like to look at are dandelions, flowers, bugs (pill bugs!), worms, leaves, sticks, snails, bees, birds, house decorations, small rocks. Today, Ian successfully “protected” as many pill bugs as he could by touching them so they can roll into a ball and picking them up to return them to the grass. He feels better that they won’t get stepped on.

Ash Wednesday

March 6th, 2019

He wondered for two days whether to receive the ash on his forehead. Finally, after we discussed it last night, he decided he wanted it. We agreed that it’s because it means God loves him.

After he showed me his forehead, I asked him what it meant. He said, “It means Jesus loves me.”

This is mine!

More than knowing that Jesus loves me, the symbol of ashes on my forehead signifies a deeper meaning for me. It symbolizes death of self, denial of self, sacrifice of self because of a renewed realization of God’s grace in my life. It also symbolizes the hope of resurrection as I go through spiritual defeats in my life. For the first time in my life, I look forward to Easter.

New Earrings!

She lost her white flower earrings while playing with her brother so we had to break out the new ones! She cried that she lost the old ones and, surprisingly, she didn’t mind wearing these new ones, as long as she has earrings, I guess. My daughter is such a girly-girl, pretty pink princesses and everything 🥰

Tustin Library

March 6th, 2019
Children's Learning Center
Children’s Learning Center

A few days ago, I visited the library after a long time being away. I used to come to story time with Ian when he was barely 2 years old. Now, I am here with Joyanne. It was sweetly pleasant remembering the memories, even though that was only a couple of years ago. I have more confidence the second time around, for sure. My daughter was as resourceful as my son, running and exploring and touching everything.