Done Deal

Tuesday, November 26, 2013 1 comment
It's official. The house is ours. We signed on the dotted line today and got the keys. Move in begins tomorrow.

Its been a 6-month long roller coaster ride in buying this foreclosure and one we don't want again anytime within say the next 18 years.

This is home (for a LONG, LONG while).

Oliver's Soccer Photo

Tuesday, November 19, 2013 1 comment
Oliver's soccer team photo.

4th Grade Photo

Monday, November 18, 2013 2 comments
Chloe's 4th grade photo arrived. This is her first official photo at her new school and I was excited to finally get to see a class photo of her classmates so I could put names with faces.


Sunday, November 17, 2013 No comments
We went to New Orleans this past week to cheer on, support and watch the world-class racers who came to NOLA Motorsports Park to compete in...

Racers from all over the world came to New Orleans in what can best be described as the Olympics of karting.

Many of Chloe's fellow racers were competing in the Micro Max & Mini Max Invitational.

The entire family went on the trip and BeBe and PaPaw flew in from Dallas to see the grandkids and the racing.

The weather wasn't as warm as I had hoped, it was COLD the first few days we were there but warmed up for the final day.

Matt, Chloe and PaPaw spent most of their time the track watching qualifying races and pre-finals. BeBe, Oliver, Emma Claire and myself went exploring and would return to the track in the afternoon. We did stay to watch the final races on Saturday and they were all exciting. It was a great day of racing and a fun family vacation.

On the first full day we were in NOLA, BeBe, Emma Claire, Oliver and I went to the aquarium to escape the cold.
Oliver on a frog display at the aquarium.
Oliver decided he didn't want to pet the sting rays after all when he found out they ONCE had stingers.
Emma Claire was a pretty good traveler. She went with the flow as usual.

Our 2nd day in NOLA sent us away from the racetrack and into the city. This is a photo of Oliver and Chloe in Jackson Square with St. Elizabeth's Cathedral in the background.
Chloe and Oliver listening to the jazz music in Jackson Square. Oliver had to wear Chloe's jacket because his thin coat wasn't keeping him warm.

Matt and Chloe watching the DD2 Masters class prepare to go on track for their final race.

The parade of drivers started the race.

Team USA as the host country leads in drivers from 60 other countries to start Saturday's final races for world champion.

Photo Catch-Up

Friday, November 08, 2013 No comments
I have a lot of photos to catch up on. I've been taking photos but haven't had the time to download them and look at what I want to share. So, I found the time and here's a random assortment of photos I neglected to post.

Short-course swim season is well upon us and Chloe is liking her new swim team. She is swimming farther distances and competed in the 10 and Under 200 butterfly this past weekend. She was one of two competiting--the harder the stroke, the farther the distance, the less competitors.  She's got a great butterfly (that's what she is known for on the new team, swimming fly in all IM relays for her team) and did really well. It was so great to see her entire team at the end of the swimming pool shouting her name and cheering her on.
Chloe also competed in the 100 IM. This is her doing the backstroke.

Chloe competing in the butterfly on her relay team.

Chloe doing the fly during the 200 fly.

I don't know that I mentioned that we bought ANOTHER car. Three wasn't enough, we needed a fourth to take Matt to the train station in the mornings. We also wanted a 4-door car (2 of our cars are sports cars) that the entire family could ride in. Having only the SUV that everyone could fit into has really helped rack up miles so we wanted a more practical, better gas-mileage car that could serve as a back-up. This fit the bill nicely---

On the house front, the sheetrock in the barn is done. But the place is a mess. Matt has been trying to "light a fire" so the place will get cleaned up and it won't cause a delay in closing (which is could because it was written on a report to get our certificate of occupancy that the clean-up had not been performed). Ugh. The saga continues....

The verymessy, but sheetrocked to code, barn.

15-Months Old

Wednesday, November 06, 2013 2 comments
Emma Claire is 15 months old today. She's been home a little over 3 months.

The details--
Weight: 21 lbs., 10.6 ounces
Length: 30 inches

Her personality is out in full-force. She's shy to warm up to people, can be very silly when she feels comfortable with you and puts EVERYTHING in her mouth. I have had to fish some items from her jowls A LOT, especially with a brother and sister that like to leave bits and pieces around. She can also be meddlesome, she likes to dig through my purse, the files, and take apart the kitchen cabinets she can get into. She also LOVES to give kisses.

She loves her older siblings and Oliver can make her giggle wildly. She is not walking yet but can stand for a few seconds on her own. She is using the signs for "eat" and "more". She has a few words-hot, get, Mommy, GeGe, JieJie, Ow (as in ouch), up, doggy, and Daddy. There may be a few more words in there, but those are the words we can decipher.

She barely qualified for Early Childhood and we are going to use the services to get her up to speed.

We are also still waiting on her Certificate of Citizenship. I can't seem to get a straight answer from USCIS on the whereabouts of her certificate. We were told a few weeks ago that it was in queue for printing. It's been 99 days since we've come home. It should have arrived before 45 days home. So frustrating.

Happy Halloween!

Friday, November 01, 2013 No comments

Oliver may not want to share his Halloween candy, but he freely shared his Halloween cold. Four out of 5 of us are under the weather (Chloe seems to never get colds). It was humid, damp and unseasonably warm--not a great combination for those suffering from a croup-like cough.

All Chloe wanted to do was to go trick or treating with her pals from the neighborhood. As soon as she got off the bus, she started watching the clock. All Emma Claire wanted to do was go to sleep. She was a good sport letting me put her in the panda costume. 

Oliver was eager to trick or treat, chasing Chloe and her friends from house to house. I somehow ended up buying two red Power Ranger costumes and it turned out to be a smart move as Oliver came home from preschool with grass stains all over the white legs of the costume. A quick switch and he was ready to go too. He is on the mend, almost back to 100% but has a wicked cough and our pediatrician has put him back on the nebulizer until the hacking subsides. I was able to convince him we should cut the trick or treating short after he struggled to catch his breath chasing Chloe from house to house. 

Chloe stayed out with her pals and their mom and Oliver, Emma Claire and I returned home to hand out candy. Emma Claire called it an early night and was asleep in her crib by 6:30 pm. Poor little panda.

The Halloween costume rundown:

Zorro, the Red Power Ranger & a little panda bear.

Poor Emma wasn't feeling so well but she was a good sport. We originally wanted her to be a white tiger but the costume was sold out and on backorder. She made a cute panda.

Chloe as Zorro. This is the second time Chloe has been Zorro. She loves the accessories.

Oliver as the red Power Ranger. There were so many things he wanted to be, but I finally had to call it and just make the purchase.
The Halloween day:
Emma Claire in her Halloween outfit. I thought it was precious, Oliver and Chloe thought she looked like Two-Face or the Joker from Batman. "Why are you torturing her?" Chloe asked. We got lots of compliments.

Oliver at pre-school. They sang a few songs for the parents and went on a Halloween parade.

Some of his classmates and their costumes.

The Halloween parade.