Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

This year Josh chose to participate in "No-Shave November". Josh started mid-way through October. I have a few theories as to why- 1. He lost his razor. 2. He wants to save some money, because razor are expensive here! 3. He wanted a head start to drive me crazy. :)

I was trying to be supportive of him in this endeavor. He did look quite handsome, UNTIL it started getting out of control. Honestly, maybe it wasn't out of control, maybe I just wasn't used to it and refused to become okay with this new growth. As the days went on, his hair grew... and grew... and GREW! At meals small crumbs would get stuck in there.


One day he came home on his motorcycle in a heavy rain storm. He got cleaned up a bit and sat down to eat. He still had little beads of water on his beard. I told him about it, and y'all he wiped his beard and a puddle of water formed under it! I couldn't take it anymore!! You're laughing, I know you are.

So a few days later, he had enough too. We took photos to share, because if you're going to grow a beard out for that long you have to cut in as many different ways as you can before it's all gone. We haven't laughed this hard in while. :)



 





 





I know what you're thinking- Why didn't we take ALL the photos in the tuxedo t-shirt?? The tux tee says "I'm formal, but I'm here to party."

He looks years younger without the beard. He also looks about a zillion times less creepy than all the other "looks". Kate didn't cry when the clean shaven Daddy walked in her room the next morning. I think he may have even gotten some extra snuggles and kisses.

Monday, December 8, 2014

First Birthday Party Day

I titled this "First Birthday Party Day" because that's exactly what it was. A full Saturday of parties. The supplies were purchased. The cakes were made. We did it all for the first party (yes, you read that right), and friends helped out with the second party.

First Party:
Location: Our house
Time: 11 AM
Guest: Children that live on our road.

The invitations were passed out two days before the party. In this country, procrastinators are guilt free because it's totally acceptable to pass out invitations to your party two days before the date! The girl next door went with me to each house that had children in it to hand them out. It was so interesting to observe how she would call her friends outside. In America, we can knock or ring a doorbell. Here there are gates that keep you from front doors and some have dogs behind those gates. She would almost sing her friends name... I've tried to replicate it but fall flat every time. We had a list of about 25 kids that lived on our road. I forgot that Indonesians have school on Saturday, so some would either come late or not be able to make it.

We made our own bucket of bubbles and wands. We cut the top and bottom out of a can so we could make large bubbles. We had cake and koolaid inside the house. This was a treat for our neighbors because they ate "American" cake (which is sweeter than Indonesian cake), they drank "American" koolaid (which wasn't as sweet, because we took it easy on the sugar), and they were invited to come inside the house. The inside of our house looks different than the inside of theirs... and I have the same reaction when invited inside their homes. I want to look around at everything, without seeming like I want to look at everything- but I REALLY do. All of the sudden it hit me, they want to experience American culture, so we did. We had activities that I thought kids like to do- bubbles, cake, koolaid, presents. I asked if we could celebrate like we would if we were in America. They were soooooo excited about that. So, we sang Happy Birthday in English, which they all knew. We shared a homemade cake, which they gobbled up. One kid had at least three pieces. One difference that I asked for permission to change was the opening of presents. In Indonesia the presents are not opened in front of the giver. In America, the present is opened in front of them. I asked if Kate could open her presents in front of them like we would in America, and they were so excited to see what their friends had given her. Kate couldn't really open the gifts, but we had MANY helpers. After that, they said thanks and went home by 12:30 PM.

 




Kate took a nap. We rested.

Party Number 2
Location: HIS Playground
Time: 3:30? hmmm... I can't remember. It was post nap time.
Guests: Kate's friends from soccer, playgroup, and some of our adult friends who are like family
A friend made a sweet cupcake-cake in the shape of a butterfly for the guests. Others brought koolaid. Some friends arrived early to help decorate and watch Kate. Another friend took pictures, so we could enjoy this moment.

Activities: We had bubbles. We colored. Each child had a coloring sheet that was the first letter of their name. They had a box crayons that they could take home, as well as a container of bubbles. We had cake. We sang Happy Birthday, and we watched Kate eat her own chocolate frosted butterfly cake. We opened presents.

 










We wrapped the party up around 5:30 and were home by 6- all of us worn out from the day. Yes, looking back I think we were a bit crazy. But would I change anything? Not one thing. I love our friends, but really I was more excited about the neighborhood party. This was the first time since we've lived here that we have time to build relationships. This party has opened the door even wider for meaningful relationships with the people that we interact with daily. I'm really excited about what's happening in our neighborhood!

Happy birthday, Sweet Baby Kate! We love you so, so, SO much!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Beach Buzz

Living near the equator has many benefits. Here are few:
 -The sun rises and sets at about the same time every day. For a person who appreciates routine, I like knowing when the sun will rise and set. We don't have to deal with daylight savings because... well we just don't, which is another perk of living here.
-It's summer all year round. This can become difficult and confusing when friends in America are posting photos of snow, Starbucks holiday flavors, and scarves.
-Because it's hot all year round, we can go to the most beautiful beaches in the entire world anytime.

I say that, and honestly, the last time Josh and I went to the beach may have been at least a year and half ago. We finally got to a point where we could make it through the day without having to pump 5 bazillion times, and she could eat a variety of solid foods. We decided that it would be best if went to a beach we could drive to, so we have the option to leave whenever we wanted- baby melts down, parents melt down...

Some sweet friends joined us for the day. It turned out to be a very busy day at the beach. Many people had the same brilliant idea that we did! So there was a crowd for much of the day. I hope the photos will tell the story better than I can.

First time touching sand

We blinked, and she ate it.
 
First time in the ocean

A little afraid of the waves

During the day she ate a TON of sand.
 


Made some new friends

 
 
Sweet friends

Lying in a hammock. She probably would have slept, but we wanted the
nap to happen in the car.
 
Fan club. After the 100th photo I have a hard time staying
polite, so I walk away.
Kate ate a massive amount of sand. There's just no way to keep her from shoving it in her mouth, especially when there is so much of it around. Many people would make comments before our beach trip of the type of poo she would have afterwards. In their mind perhaps that was funny, but in my mind I wanted to do everything possible to avoid this horrific poos that were going to happen. After experiencing the post-beach poo, I want to go back! Post-beach poos are so easy to clean up.

I know maybe this isn't the place to talk about such things, but I just want to remind myself that often times what other say that spark fear or anxiety in me turn out to be small, small things with no reason for worry.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Lost and Found

Think back to your childhood. What was something that went with you wherever you went? What was something that you always had in bed with you when it was time to go to sleep? Maybe some of you never had something like that. Maybe some of us STILL have something special like that. For me, it's a quilt that my Little Grandma made me when I was a young girl. I'm not even sure how old I was when she gave it to me. That quilt has been to every country/state/church camp/college dorm room/house/road trip/airplane ride/hospital I've ever been to! The only person I will share that quilt with is Kate... and I haven't had to do that yet and [thankfully] she hasn't asked!

Kate has Ms. Cow. Ms. Cow was given to her by Big Grandma (aka Big G or Big Maw). Ms. Cow was a friend to Kate as she hung out in her butterfly chair bouncing away. She kept Kate company while drinking milk. She would roll around on the floor with Kate during tummy time. She was even lucky enough to get some sweet bedtime snuggles in. Ms. Cow even helped Kate struggle through jetlag by blocking out the sun so Kate could sleep! I mean, seriously, what a friend!



 
Then it happened.
 
When we returned from Singapore.
 
It happened.
 
Where is she? Where is Ms. Cow?
 
I think I was more upset than Kate. Honestly, I don't think she even noticed Ms. Cow was missing. We put out a BOLO (Be On the Look Out) for Ms. Cow. We asked our helper to keep an eye out too. Nothing. She was no where to be found. I thought we would have to ask for a second Ms. Cow to replace the first. So, I grieved the loss of Ms. Cow.
 
Then it happened.
 
Months later...
 
When I was changing the sheets on Kate's bed.
 
It happened.
 
A soft pink and white blanket thing peeked out at me from underneath the mattress.
 
Could it be??!!
 
It was! It was her! I grabbed her and called sweet Kate into her room. That reunion of two old friends was nothing short of beautiful. Kate's eyes LIT up. She grabbed her friend around the neck and held onto her. My Momma heart knows that kind of hug- you know, the hug between two loved ones who haven't seen each other in a long while, you never want to let go. Kate then took Ms. Cow on a quick tour to introduce her to all the changes that had happened while she was away. Kate was thrilled to have her sahabat (Indonesian for close friend) back. The two have been inseparable since. Ms. Cow normally stays in Kate's bed and anticipates naptimes and bedtime, but often Kate will break her out and the two explore the house together.
 

 


I know it's something small, but it was special to find Ms. Cow. So she was once lost, but now is found!