Thursday, December 20, 2007

The guys are sick

Taipan and Yuta are sick. It's sad. Taipan hasn't been feeling well since Tuesday. He's been saying his belly hurts, and hasn't had much of an appetite at all. I think he might be on the upswing, or so we hope.

Yuta might have the same bug - he's also got stomach issues and has no appetite and very little energy. Somehow he managed to take care of the kids for about four hours today so I could finish some work before heading out on vacation.

So far Taisim is ok. And so am I, though I'm pretty tired.

Hopefully everyone will be healthy for the holidays!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Gabrielle's Gift

I didn't want this to get lost in the last post, so I'm calling it out separately. A friend of mine is starting an organization called Gabrielle's Gift, inspired by the daughter of a friend of ours. Our friend's daughter, Gabrielle, has been diagnosed with Niemann-Pick Type C Disease.

NP-C is a
genetic, pediatric, neurodegenerative disorder. It is responsible for the build-up of cholesterol in cells, resulting in eventual damage to the nervous system. This metabolic disorder leads to a series of neurological problems that are ultimately fatal.

Yuta and I have offered to help out with a website - Gabrielle's Gift. Right now the web pages are just a simple blog. As things progress, we may move to something more robust.

Check out the site - it's still under development. Some links aren't working. Some content is missing. Eventually we'll be selling bracelets to raise money to support Gabrielle's family and fund research for Niemann-Pick. Janet is working on getting the non-profit status, and we'll need that before bracelets can be sold. Stay tuned for details.

What the heck are we up to?

So, what are we up to that we've done no blogging over the past month or two? The simple answer is that I don't really know. The more truthful answer is more complex than that. Partially it's that I've been busy with work, and I usually post blogs while I'm working. Or I used to post after the kids were asleep. And we used to post when we had pictures to share. And my mind is scattered lately.

The biggest new thing in our lives is a crazy, new schedule. Taisim is a real night owl lately. And we've consciously tried to let go of dictating when the kids go to bed. It feels good to give the kids control over that. It's nice that I have more time with the kids after I get off of work. It's a big challenging to have to get up and work in the morning after a late night with the kids. And some mornings Taipan is upset that he can't get cuddles from me when he wakes up because I'm already working.

I've also been talking to a former co-worker about a potential job opportunity in Portland, Oregon. Thinking about that, considering the possibilities and figuring out with Yuta the best thing for us to do. When things like this come up I tend to get paralyzed while imagining everything we'd need to do if we moved across the country, and imagining how things would go if we moved. And I get nothing else done. So, I've been very wound up in the potential of going to Portland for a job interview. It's been on my mind a lot, but I haven't felt comfortable writing about it. Now I do, so maybe I'll blog more :)

The kids are doing great. Taipan is really enjoying the xBox & the Wii. We have some pictures from the past few weeks - I'll give Yuta a nudge to post some.

The next couple of weeks will be exciting. I've got 2.5 more days of work, then beginning Friday I'm off until after New Year.

Oh, and we didn't get holiday cards done this year. I guess there's still time for a New Year's card, but I'm not holding out much hope for that.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Taipan is Four

We celebrated Taipan's fourth birthday today. This is the first year that he's really started to be into birthdays, and he seemed to really enjoy his day.

When he woke up this morning I told him that today was his birthday and he's four now. He thanked me for wishing him a happy birthday, and then asked me on which day he would be an adult.

I took the day off of work and we went to Amazone to celebrate with some of our friends. There were lots of kids whose company Taipan and Taisim enjoy, and they had a lot of fun in the playground area and in the arcade.

I had planned to make chocolate cupcakes for his birthday, but Taipan requested a big cake that we could write on, he wanted Starburst candy on it, and also wanted it to be a vanilla cake like his friend had for her birthday (which also happens to be today, and we went to her party over the weekend). So we made a white sheet cake, with whipped cream frosting, Starburst, and writing.

He also received some great gifts - we got him a Lego train, my mom sent a belt that he loves, and my dad sent a wooden paint-it-yourself train, which we started working on immediately, and he got a Jumbo bear from my in-laws.... and those are only a few of the gifts he received.

Thank you to everybody who helped make today so special and memorable for Taipan. We love you all!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween fun

A while ago Taipan said he wanted to be a pumpkin for Halloween. I asked him a few times and the answer was always the same, so we got pumpkin costumes for both of the kids. As Halloween got closer Taipan said he wanted to be a dog. Then a dinosaur. I wasn't sure exactly what he'd want to dress up as today.

Turns out, nothing. I wasn't too surprised about that. He did want to wear a Halloween shirt though.

A friend of ours had a party tonight, and when we got there Taipan was eager to go trick or treating, so we gathered the kids and left the house. Taisim didn't feel like wearing her costume or shoes, so we headed out without costumes on the kids.

Yuta and I were dressed up though:

The first house we went to had a mask from the movie Scream that shot out fog or smoke. And that was the end of trick or treating for us. As soon as the mask let out the smoke Taipan was ready to go to the van. Taisim and Yuta headed to another house, but as soon as Taisim realized that Taipan and I weren't here she wanted to head back inside too.

The kids had a blast playing once the other kids finished trick or treating. At first Taipan was disappointed because our friend's house ran out of candy, so he only had one piece :-( But he soon got past it. Taisim also had one piece of candy, and seemed fine with just the one.

He ended up spending a lot of time playing with a motion-activated witch - here's a picture of him posing with it:

And here's a picture of what they would have been had they wanted to wear their costumes tonight (I took this on Sunday when I was making sure the costumes were clean & fit them ok):

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Family Fun Fest @ Patterson Farm

Monday was such a beautiful day, we decided to go to Patterson Fruit Farm to check out their Family Fun Fest. After taking the scenic route there (I missed a turn or two), we arrived to what was a much larger Fun Fest than we had anticipated!

There was a quick tractor ride to the actual festival...

where there was a large pavilion of hay...

a figure-8 track with foot pedal tractors...

pumpkins for painting...

and slides large and small...

It was a fun time! And we got some pumpkins for carvin' to boot!

Monday, October 22, 2007


The weather here over the weekend was beautiful. Sunny, warm, nice breeze. Couldn't ask for better weather in the midwest at the end of October.

We took advantage of it and went to Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens to see their Tremendous Treehouses exhibit. The grounds are absolutely beautiful, and if I were planning a wedding in Cleveland it'd be at the top of my list of places to have it.

They arranged for about ten architects/artists to build treehouses on their grounds, and they're all spread out - we saw five of them I think. The kids liked the pirate ship and musical treehouses the best.

We also checked out the conservatory, which had three model trains (g gauge) set up - two were working, and that was a nice surprise for Taipan.

All of the walking was really tough on Yuta's knee. He iced it when we got home, and then again last night. Today he's planning to call the doctor back and will most likely get an MRI.

Our camera started losing battery, but we got a few pics at Stan Hywet. It'll probably take us a few months to post them, but keep checking - they'll be here eventually :-)
(Y: And it only took 13 hours this time!)