After cutting Liliana's hair, we looked in the mirror and she exclaimed, "I love my Disney princess hair!" Then she ran out of the room to her bedroom. She appeared a few minutes later wearing her princess dress, requesting to dance with daddy. She put in this CD (Cinderella by Steven Curtis Chapman), and danced several dances with her daddy. I took the opportunity to capture the special moments on film. These are moments we will cherish always. Daddy's little princess.
The ladybug wanted to get her hair cut again. And just like last time she requested a "Disney Princess haircut!" Mommy decided to cut her hair this time, into a really cute princess haircut. Here is her new cut!
Dressed as a princess, looking at her dress.
Totally cute little, bitty, toes!
And, of course a girl always has to have some awesome shoes. It's all about the shoes!
Christmas at our house is usually rather quiet, except for the squeals of excitement from Liliana. Since we happen to live in the middle of the United States, and the ladybug's grandparents live on either coast, we often do not spend Christmas with them unless we travel out of state. This year we opted to stay home and enjoy a cold snowy Christmas with just the three of us.
Liliana started by chatting it up with Santa through a video message he sent her.
She then got her delicious cookies ready on a special Santa plate and placed them near the tree.
Finally, she placed a special Santa key on the door so that Santa could get into our house since we do not have a chimney, to deliver toys and gifts.
After we all went to bed, Santa placed all of the gifts (both his and ours) under the tree.
It is time to make some tasty cookies for Santa Claus when he visits us on Christmas Eve. Last year's sugar cookies were good, but nothing great. However, before school got out for Christmas vacation this year, a fellow teacher brought some home-made sugar cookies to school that his wife made. They were WONDERFUL! These amazing cookies reminded me of those absolutely perfect, super soft, uber tasty sugar cookies with perfect frosting that I ate when I was a kid. I never thought I would be able to make these cookies myself. But... Eureka!
Liliana started by rolling the dough flat.
Then she meticulously placed the cookie cutters on the dough and "squooshed."
However, until Mommmy intervened the cookies were almost 2 inches thick!
Then the bug placed the dough on the cookie sheet and placed it in the oven.
While the cookies were baking, Liliana played with the flour, cookie cutters, and rolling pin like any good little Chinese girl should... with chopsticks!
Next it was time to creatively decorate the cookies with lots of frosting and lots of sprinkles.
Lastly, Liliana enjoyed the cookie goodness that only homemade sugar cookies can bring.
"Growing candy canes" you ask? I learned about growing candy canes from a fellow adoptive parent this year. I never thought in a million years that this could be done, but lo and behold, growing candy canes is a possibility. First, you get a nice container to put the seeds in. Next, you put in some special candy cane dirt (fake snow worked great for us). Then you plant the seeds and water. Further watering is not needed (we stopped watering since doing so would have changed our white "dirt" a pinkish red). Before you know it, you will be growing beautiful striped canes!
We started growing them this holiday season when Nana F. was still in town.
First, we planted the candy cane seeds.
Then, we sang a happy, holiday, candy cane growing-type song!
Then with a great big smile, we started watering the seeds to make sure they would grow.
And then with a wink and a smile we wait patiently for the candy canes to start growing.
Two weeks later we have a little candy cane forest!
While Nana F was out visiting the bug and family over Thanksgiving, I decided to "Elf" the family. For those who have not done this before, you upload an image to the Elf Yourself website, choose a dance, and then watch yourself Elfing. We have done this previous years and have thoroughly enjoyed the cute little dances. Well, this year I created a couple dances of the the family Elfing. After creating the dances, the Ladybug and Nana eagerly watched as Ladybug Elf, Momma Elf, and Daddy Elf discoed their hearts out.
Below are the two Elf Yourself videos that we created. The first one is of the family getting our Disco-groove on. This is the video that is playing in the background in the above DropShots link that is making the Ladybug laugh so hard. Who knew we could dance so well? The second video is of us learning to dance country-style. Hope you enjoy!
I just put the Ladybug down for a nap, and her one request... "I want my ladybug bainty (blanket)."
A good friend, fellow blogger, and adoptive mother recently asked me if her daughter's favorite blanket was a gift from me. Well, to answer her question, "Yes!" Early in the adoption process, as the timeline was slowing to a crawl, several of us adoptive moms became "secret pals" to one another. My dear friend Kristi became the person whom I showered with anonymous gifts and cards. One of the gifts I made for her was a ladybug blanket. I decided at the same time to create a similar blanket from the same material for my little ladybug.
The decision to create similar blankets seemd rather insignificant at the time. But now, two years later I see how special that decision was. What I find wonderful about this story is that two little girls who now live half-way around the world from each other, share not only the same blanket, but also similar feelings about their blankets. The Ladybug absolutely adores her blanket. She sleeps with it every night, plays with it throughout the day, and even wraps her baby dolls in it to keep them warm. Now I find out that Kristi's daughter loves her blanket just as much as the Ladybug. When mother and daughter recently moved half-way around the world to live in China (my secret dream by the way!), the blanket was a must! Who knew that two years after bringing our girls home, they would share special blankets that will bond them for life. They may not be sisters in real life, but they are sisters in the heart. We miss you friends!
The Ladybug is pictured here with her blanket, staying warm one a cold, snowy day.
I am starting a new blog site. Why you ask? Because our lives are in change. We are embarking on new adventures as a family. The old "Ladybug" site was completely centered around the adoption of our little bug. We are now a very happy family, living life in the midwest. Everyday is an adventure with a toddler, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
But, what picture should I post to go along with this new theme? A new photo of the bug of course. Dressed as Tinkerbell with butterfly wings. We are in a metamorphasis. This photo is the perfect match.
It's time for a new adventure. Come follow along on our journey...
I knew this day would come, and as such I have been avoiding it like the plague. I absolutely adore the Ladybug’s long curly locks. Those beautiful tendrils of gorgeous brown ringlets always make me smile, and have been the envy of all of her friends, near and far. Even while we were in China “Baby Big Hair” made all of her friends a little bit jealous of her natural bouffant. But, the day had to come eventually. The day when mommy and daddy would take her in to a complete stranger to have her hair trimmed. Today was that day.
Below is the the event in pictures. Enjoy!
The Ladybug posing for the camera before her haircut.
Checking out which style and cut she wants... and looking really scared before the haircut.
The stylist took her ponytail holders out and then over to the sink to wash her hair.
During the shampoo The Ladybug became very scared and started to cry so we stopped the wash (the shampoo hadn’t even been put into her hair yet) and went back to the chair.
As soon as the cut began, The Bug was a trooper and sat quietly throughout the haircut, intently watching the stylist do her work.
The Ladybug continued to watch every little step carefully, making sure the stylist wasn’t taking too much off.
After the haircut the stylist started to dry The Ladybug’s hair with a hair dryer. In the beginning the Bug seemed OK with it, but soon became scared and started to cry. Daddy walked over, held her hands to keep her from being too frightened. After it was all over her consoled her with a kiss to make it all better.
Of course, what really made everything better was the lollypop she received from the stylist.
Here she is with her new haircut. To be honest the bangs are just a teensy bit too short, but in about a week they will be perfect. We didn’t take too much off the length since her natural curl makes the hair seem shorter anyway. The little Bug loves her new do and so do we. Not bad for a first go around.