Monday, March 21, 2011

Denzel Family 2009-2010

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

More thoughts about the ordinary...

These are words from a devotional a friend e-mailed to me today:

"Look closely at the ordinary in your life. While you're being grateful, don't forget to express pure, sheer gratitude for how beautiful the ordinary really is. We can easily overlook the ordinary, take it for granted. The sun rises and sets, the seasons come and go, and we forget how beautiful and sensational the familiar really is.

God thank you for every detail of my ordinary, everyday world."

I'm thanking God for my "ordinary" today.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Franciscan Benediction :

"May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart. May God bless you with an anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace. May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war, so that you can reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy. And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Just a thought...

"We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Mother Teresa

this feels like the essence of the scared in the ordinary to me.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Has it been four months already?

Today is the 4th month anniversary of XuXu's "gotcha day". And this will sound cliché... but maybe that is why it rings true... where did the time go?!?! and then also... it's only been four months?!?! China seems like forever ago and yesterday at the same time. XuXu is new to our family and seems as if she has always been here.

Here we are celebrating her first Independence Day as an American citizen at the "Push'em Pull'em" parade that happens every Fourth of July in our little beach town.

She has grown so much and in so many ways in the last four months. In China she could walk but was wobbly, now she is steady and almost running, learning to jump, climbs everything, and dances. In China she had 8 teeth and was just starting to get 2 molars, and now she has 16 teeth! Now she eats anything when at first she would only eat things that were of a baby food consistency. She is saying English words and adding new ones to her vocabulary every day. She is even starting to put two word sentences together. She is even using a little Chinese (she didn't before). She says "Ni Hao" (hello) and "Piao Liang" (pretty). She always says "piao liang" after I put her hair in pigtails or put her in a dress... so cute! Oh... did I mention that her hair is long enough now to put it in pigtails.

XuXu is also sporting quite the Cali-girl tan.

She has become a water baby and loves to play in the pool, tub or ocean.

She has gone from waking up crying several times in the night and waking up crying in the morning to sleeping soundly and waking up happy. She has definitely grown taller and heavier, I'm sporting the biceps to prove it. She is so much more confident and curious and content. What amazing things can happen in four months and right under our noses.

I have watched many children change and grow... from my son Zion and daughter XuXu, to nieces and nephews and the kids of my friends. It always seems like a miracle. When Bill and I had just started dating our friends Bill and Rhonni had their first son Billy. This year he graduated from high school and just left home to spend a year in London before starting college and turns 19 in the fall. It's stunning to remember the little baby whom I held the hands of to help him learn to walk and then think of the tall, intelligent, talented, and Godly young man that he has become. It takes my breath away. I also think, "I'm that old.. I have watched a child grow up?!" And then I think of my own babies as grown and gone and it really chokes me up... makes me want to be a better mom... and savor every ounce of childhood that is left. I'm going to go steal a kiss from my sleeping angels now.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Ok Ok... alright, already

This is for all of you who are missing your Zion and XuXu fix. Things are going well. Getting better and better for me, I'm handling two kids and the changes much better now (I felt insane for awhile there). But in order to get there something had to give, and it was my blog and Internet communication (not that I was doing very well posting before anyway).

SO... that being said... this has to be short tonight. I gotta sleep! Summer is much harder with both of them home all day.
Here is a synopsis of the past month:

• Zion finished first grade
•He was one of two first graders in his school to win the Presidential Physical Fitness Award
• XuXu is saying more and more words all the time, she likes to sing the "clean up " song especially and it sounds like this "Meeee ma, Meee ma, aiaiaiaiai... Meee ma!" (Clean up, Clean up, everybody everywhere...)
• She is finally calling ME "MaMa", not just arbitrarily saying it, and she stopped calling me "Daddy"
• We have had some great days at the beach and the pool
• XuXu had her first camping experience, at Carpinteria State Beach
• They both had a blast at Vacation Bible School (She says "Jesus" now, it sounds like "GEEDA")
• XuXu has grown 2 inches taller and gained 2 pounds in just over 2 months!... and out grown a bunch of clothes!!
• XuXu and Zion really act like brother and sister, playing, laughing, fighting, loving together... that is great for me to see
• Zion called XuXu his best friend

Those are the highlights I can think of right now. I'll leave you with a couple of cute pics.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Finding a rhythm... and a little fun

We have been home with XuXu for two months now and had her for almost two months and 10 days. She is doing so well in her new life as a Denzel. She and her brother just have a ball playing together... chasing each other, pillow fights (well, that is just Zion bopping her with pillows... she laughs now, but watch out brother for when she learns to bop back), wrestling... do I detect a very boy oriented play theme here? I guess that is how it is with a brother (I only had a sister).

Also, the fussing she does when she doesn't get what she wants (which was very constant in China and the first few weeks home) is tapering off and not so intense (my sanity thanks you, Lord). Her sleeping has improved so much too. She wakes up happy and rarely wakes up in the night and the naps are much more consistent. She is getting the hang of her routine and knows what we do at meal, nap and bed times. She reaches out her hands to hold hands to pray before meals and when we start bedtime routines she says "nigh, nigh" (Night, Night). She knows where to put dirty diapers and little bits of trash she might find on the floor (usually leaves that get in the house from zion and herself going in and out to play). She enjoys helping me with the laundry. She likes to put the wet clothes into the dryer. And she has learned to enjoy "In 'n Out Burger", a Denzel necessity.

We have also discovered that XuXu is a water girl. She loves the water. (Very important when you practically have a fish for a brother.) I knew she enjoyed the bath, but that and one cautious day dipping her toes in the ocean is all she had experienced. Last weekend (when it was super hot) we went to Grandpa's (my dad's) apartment to swim in the pool. She LOVED it, no fear. She didn't even mind dunking her head under a bit. I just had to keep her from drinking the water... hmmmm. Here's a pic of us just getting in.

The next day I watched my sister's baby Giada (GiGi) while she, her husband and my husband helped my dad move. So the cousins XuXu and GiGi had a play date. GiGi is 10 months old. And after a few tussles over having to share the toys with GiGi, XuXu and GiGi had a great time together. Her are the cute photos...

Over all life is starting to fall into a rhythm and getting smoother. I'm doing better with the all changes, but I'm definitely not totally there yet... maybe you can never quite get it all in place, but don't tell that to an obsessive, compulsive, perfectionist, control freak. Yeah... I working on that too.