What Did Everyone do on Thanksgiving?

Hi dears!

How is everyone doing? Did you have a good Thanksgiving?
We had 3 days of continual feast...total of 2 Turkeys, 2 Steaks, and a Big Hot pot! I'm afraid to even get close to a bathroom scale!

On Thanksgiving day, I washed down my delicious thanksgiving birdie until he was squeaky clean! He, however, would not allow me to stuff him, so I decided to leave him 'as is'. Take a look at our little turkey!

Oh wait, we have TWO birds.... The boy bird above weights 0.125 lbs and the big girl below weighs only 0.5 lbs! I overheard them saying grace before their holiday meal and it went something like this: "Thank you, Lord, that I'm NOT a Turkey."

p.s. Guess who Kobee and Jubee had for Thanksgiving dinner? Yup, their RELATIVES......(aka: leftover turkey)! Many people didn't know that parrots are actually omnivorous, and eat meat too! So beware!


What a Cute Movie!

Yesterday Caleb and I had a "Mommy and Me" day! We went to Kaleidoscope to see "Madagascar 2, Return to Africa" and it was really really good! Caleb really enjoyed it! I usually think that Part 2 of anything may be anticlimactic to the Original (first) movie, but this one was really good and time went by so fast!

There's no school all week for him, lucky kid.... so we dropped off little sister, got a haircut, and ran for the theaters! Tomorrow Caleb will be 7 years old! My Turkey boy!! I still remember 7 years ago, I had a big Thanksgiving potluck lunch at church and the next day I was in labor ^_^ I guess there was no more room in the tummy inn for him!

p.s. We were going to cancel today's afternoon plan to pick up hubby from work and head to Disneyland, since it poured last night. BUT, we woke up to sunny skies! So we will stay the plan and head to Disney....before our annual pass expires in December! The "IT'S A SMALL WORLD" ride FINALLY opened....after 11.5 months of renovation! That's Abbie's favorite ride and she didn't get to ride it ALL YEAR!

Happy thanksgiving, everyone!



Holiday Bliss?

Hi Dears!

Over the weekend, I took the kids to Mission Viejo library. During checkout, I saw a bright yellow flyer on the wall.
It reads, "Holiday Survival Workshop
Group meeting once a week until January.

Meet at library lounge."

I was wondering why a workshop would be needed for such a merry time? Then it dawned on me that this is undoubtedly the most stressful time of the year! If we had unresolved relationship issues, then this would indeed be the time these cans of worms surface.

Recipe for the Holidays:
Expectation + past slights/grudges = Holiday madness.

I took Caleb to Target today and we listened to KOST 103.5FM on the radio...The Christmas songs already started playing! One song lyric was very true...it sang, "The best gift I could give to you is the gift of forgiveness. And the best gift you can give to me is to forgive." The closer we are with our beloved, the more likely we will accidentally step on their toes, and vice versa (i.e. Ever been in a crowded elevator before?) ^_^

So instead of letting the misguided feelings fester, it is best to nip it in the bud and communicate our feelings. This allows others to know our likes, dislikes, what works for us and what overwhelms us, since each of us have different energy levels & boiling points.

In this difficult economy, everyone's stressed, depressed, pressed for time/money, and celebrating is the last thing on our minds. Yet I know that our loved ones are a gift, and being with them (you all) is a blessing. Happiness is a choice, and when I began to count my blessings (despite all the bad news), there really are lots to be thankful for!

The good, the bad, the unknows, all this too shall pass. In the very very very end, God is in control, and everything will be okay.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!^_^



My mom is giving us a Cow ~(^_^)~

Hi my dears! (^_^)

I just went to the mailbox and noticed we got a big brown envelope from my mom! Inside was a big colorful farm magazine and mom's letter that reads,

"Dear Sophie,

Today at our church there was a wonderful opportunity!
I gave $$ to Heifer Int'l for a cow for Caleb and Abbie's Christmas gift. This is better than giving money, because this little female cow can work and provide milk! Enjoy!
Love, mom."

So mom is giving us a cow! ^_^

Actually, in the brochure, it says "Heifer", to be exact! What a clever idea, good job mom! But can you believe it? A cow to give milk and work our land?

I came into the house and told Caleb that grandma is sending us a cow for Christmas! His eyes lit up and he said, "Wow, that's great! We won't have to buy milk!"

Then his eyes dimmed and he looked worried. "Where are we going to put it?" Looking at our yard, he said, "There's not enough grass for it to eat! We need to plant more grass seeds right away! Who will care for it when we go on our mission trip?"

I reassured him that it'll be ok, we'll put the cow in our front yard, and it can roam across the neighborhood and get fed that way (and we'll all save on gardener expense). ^_^ Of course, we have all these wonderful neighbors whom we can rotate "heifer-sitting" duties! Perhaps we can have cow-milking sessions and moo parties! I suppose we do live in Ladera 'ranch' and we do own a farmhouse, so it's oh so natural to raise moo moo here, don't you think? ^_^

[Disclaimer: Nobody tell the homeowner's association about this, promise?]

Kobee and Jubee birds (and hubby) will be really surprised. I haven't told them yet (so far only Caleb and I know about this). Imagine one more animal in our family circus!

Here's what the heifer looks like:

Oops, .....sorry, wrong picture ...

Ok, Here's what the heifer looks like:

I proceeded to read the magazine from Heifer International
then it dawned on me that the little cow wasn't coming to our home! She was to be donated to the less fortunate in the Philippines (or Uganda)! One heifer can bring milk for the whole family and work the land too! In just one day she can produce 4-5 gallons of milk (hey, no more Costco for us!) which can become cheese, yogurt, and the extra milk can be sold as income! So the cow was donated in the name of Abbie and Caleb....

I decided to name our little Christmas cow: CABBIE

(although Caleb suggested "MILKY")!

Thanks, ma! And early Merry Christmas to you! We'll be on our Mission trip in mid-December and I'm sure we have lots of surprises waiting for us there as well!

Thank you all for praying for our upcoming trip!



What's Up with this Fire?

Hi buddies,

Sigh....why are we having 90+ degrees temp in the middle of November? And Brush Fire AGAIN? This is getting old! The past few years, whenever there's any inkling of wind, there is brushfire, and not just one but several fires burning at the same time. It's the pyromaniac's Christmas whenver there are high temps, low humidity, and windy conditions. Oh brother! The fires burned places like Brea, on the street where I used to live (in an apt) before I got married. Another fire burned in Anaheim hills, close to where I also lived (in a house), after I got married.

Hm.... I think the fire is just following me everywhere! ~*_*~

Ladera Ranch is brush fire heaven too, and our house is 20 feet from Cleveland National Forest (border)! Aye...I guess that's the cost of living in beautiful 'middle-of-nowhere'! Fire also burning near Diamond Bar, where mom lives, so I have to keep an eye on mom and beg her repeatedly NOT to go sweep ashes in the driveway while the embers are still flying.... She's too tidy! Here are a few pictures of the aftermath of the fires that I find interesting....

The picture above is of the fire in Anaheim Hills, very close to where we lived prior to moving to Ladera Ranch. Good thing we don't live there anymore! Mark's big bro lives there so we invited them to come hide out, but they stuck it out and the fire moved north to my mom instead.

This picture is of a home in Selmar (in L.A.), which just hours before was 'For Sale'. I guess the house is no longer up for sale!

This is the picture of Sam Sung Korean church in Brea, taken at 1 a.m. early this morning. When we woke up, hubby was astonished the church was still standing (as he watched the news 6 hours prior, he thought the church would be gone for sure!)

Hubby kept muttering, "This is definately a divine intervention!" This hillside church stood in the path of a blazing fire coming down the hillside, and everything burned except this church!



I was thinking about this year, and it is hard to believe that we are almost done with 2008! It is probably one of the most difficult year to give thanks for, as our country goes through struggles not seen in decades. But in whatever circumstances, I know that there are plenty to be thankful for ~(^_^)~

When we were in Utah, we went up a really flimsy (and scary) lift called the "Peruvian Express" up from Alpine slide, the ski resort we stayed at.

It was a 15 minute ride up to 11,000 ft. above sea level, and hubby, one who loved hiking yet was afraid of heights, developed really cold hands the whole time en route. We went into a very famous "Peruvian Tunnel" after reaching the top of the Snowbird Summit, and inside the tunnel it was freeeeeeezing, like the freezer in Costco. *_* We walked in the 3/4 mile tunnel, and it was wet, dark, and cold. It felt like an eternity before we reached the end of the tunnel. A bright light ahead was our only hope and motivation for moving forward. It was so bright when we reached there! And warm too, with beautiful hills and flowers awaiting us at the other end!

This year totally felt like a dark, freezing tunnel, as the economy turned ice cold and people suffered terribly financially and in relaionships. *_* But we know that at the end of the tunnel there are bright, beautiful things waiting for us. Things we cannot fathom yet, but God already prepared them in advance if we would just hang in there, keep going, and press on. We will look back and see that God has carried us through, and never left our side when we feel alone in the darkness.

So I'm thankful in 2008 for...

Support....of loved ones in my life and brothers and sisters in my neighborhood, cyber world, and church. It is through your encouragement that I continue to press on and experience God's goodness...through you!

* * * * * * * * *
Strength...Health is something I took for granted until I nearly lost it. When I regained it, I treasured it like never before!

* * * * * * * *
Stability....I've never been more thankful for the roof over my head, food on my table, and resources like medical care and a job (hubby's) to pay the bills . These days, whenever there's a little bit of wind, there's a big brushfire, like this morning we woke up watching Symore Firestorm burning hundreds of houses. $$$ is tighter than ever and people are losing homes and jobs.

Having food (which is very expensive now), shelter, and medical care are big luxuries nowadays. When we go on countryside mission trip in mid-December, I know we will be even more grateful for the things we take for granted here in the United States.

* * * * * * * *
Salvation.... is the best news in the world! No matter what happens here in this world, we know that at the end of the tunnel, there's a beautiful paradise waiting for us! I can't wait!! In the meantime, I will do my best with my responsibilities here, and I hope that my Lord will one day say, "Well done, my good and faithful servant!"

For some of you, I may see you next year! We're returning from our Mission on 1/1/09! So Merry Christmas and Happy New Years in advance, too!

# of days until Mission Possible ~ _26__!


Love may be painful ^_^

Hi dears!

I was thinking of the chinese saying, "Teeth and Tongue are close together, they inevitably will bite each other!" On Tuesday it was Caleb and mommy's "date day" because he had no school on Veteran's day. We played baseball together at Cox Sports park and we had a blast using a real aluminum bat and MLB baseball (the real thing!)

When it was time for him to pitch, I swatted my bat and whoa! I actually hit the ball! It zipped past me and aimed straight at my bewildered pitcher. The ball smacked him straight on the forhead and knocked him out. He dropped and fell down, then a big teardrop slid down his cheek. He said, "Why did you hit me, ma??" I apologized profusely and to relieve my guilt, I took him to Rubino's pizza, Golden Spoon's frozen yogurt, and begged for forgiveness by offering his favorite red vines. After all the goodies, he seemed content and may have even have forgotten his earlier trauma. As luck would have it, at the end of the day as I tucked him in, he said, "Ma, remember today you hit me with the Major League baseball?" (^_^) So they never forget, do they?
(And hubby didn't help when he said, "What? You let him pitch the MLBaseball to you? You could have killed the boy!!" But the last time I looked, he was pitching the same ball to the boy too!! Hm....)

Then last night, while brushing Abbie's teeth, I put my index finger in her mouth to clean her teeth and CRUUUUUUNCH, her chompers took hold of my finger and I screamed and jumped in pain!!! She said, "Mama, why did you put your finger in my teeth!?" I muttered and screamed in pain...She was surprised and so was I, but we both knew this was an accident. So I guess when we love and spend time with our beloved, sometimes pain may just happen!

The Taiwanese word for LOVE is "Tiah", homonym for "Pain", so when we love, we may accidentally cause or experience pain too! I bet the one who knows what this feels like the most is our Lord Jesus... because He loves us to death, literally!

My suffering hubby

Hi buddies!

Wow, we are half way through November! Yesterday hubby asked me why I haven't blogged in so many days... I was surprised he even noticed! ^_^ He said he will periodically 'check on me' to see if I blogged. Hmm...so he IS spying on me! Silly guy. Well, this morning I woke up with lots of noise. I heard a blood-curling "OWWWW! Ayeee!" coming from next to me. Not sure what hubby's up to but after he screamed and tossed his CPAP mask aside, he blurted, "I am having a leg cramp!!!" Well, I hope that he will be ok for his big hike coming up...he'll be in the mountaintops and who will carry him down if that happens again?

During breakfast, I hear shrieking again....coming from the same man. "What now?" I asked, thinking this guy must be having a bad day, and it was only 7:30am! He muttered as he looked at the red numbers on his computer... "Dow Jones is down again!! Now I feel the urge to quote a Bible verse from Job....". I gestured for him to go ahead and speak, and he said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb and naked I will depart.The Lord gaveth and the Lord taketh away; blessed be the name of the Lord!!" I was thinking, "Should I quote the wife of Job?" (^_^)

Apparently hubby's riches are dwindling each day and he was just expressing his sentiments.... well said though, since everyone's suffering financially this year and we just have to trust the Lord to provide for us in this economy.

Going to watch the California "Shake-Out" at 10am on the news now...



A New President!

Wow, I cannot believe that election day is over and we have a new President! Let's give him a try and see how he will carry our country through the economic storm. What's even more interesting of a democratic victory is the biblical and prophetical implications.

If Obama is anti-war, then we will see less support from the United States for Israel. Then Israel may indeed, like the prophet Zechariah prophesized, be alone.
I looked at Pastor Jack Hayford's website below to learn a little about the support of Israel by the children of God (Christians), and if we as a country stop supporting Israel, we could see the end-time prophecies (in the book of Revelations) further unfold before our eyes!

Getting ready for ballet class! ^_^


Hubby and Me

I'm going to post a pix of me and hubby, as I realized we don't take many pictures together anymore (usually, one takes the pix for the other one + kids). That goes with parenting too! ^_^

^_^ Time flies....we've been married 10.5 years and met since Thanksgiving rally at Navigators (at UCSD) in 1992....that's 16 years! He was a super-senior and I was a very, very Naive Freshman.... Sigh... So I've known this guy for about half of my lifetime! yikes! ^_^

Election Day is here!

Today is the BIG DAY! Whoa! No matter what happens, we will turn a historical page as we will either have our 1st African-American president, or 1st Woman Vice-President! ^_^

Good thing no matter what happens, God is in control! Woohooo!

Have a nice day, everyone! And mark your ballot sheet carefully! It'll be funny if Barack or McCain didn't look carefully and fill out the bubble next to their competitor's name! ha! I'll bring Caleb to our clubhouse to 'cast our absentee ballot' so we can get the 'I VOTED' sticker!

Lemme attach a pix from our visit to the Olympic Park at Salt Lake City, UT. where they held Winter Olympics 2002.

Time to eat Wendy's 1/4 lb burger and side salad with Italian vinagrette...


Video: Our Butterfly Ballerina

Hi everyone ^_^
Here we have our ballet girl, who started ballet in September and had a Halloween "Butterfly" recital in October! She loooooves ballet and is up bright and early on Wednesdays to 'wake up, warm up' and go to ballet class!

See her funny butterfly dance for yourself! ^_^

Video: The kids duke it out!

Well, there we have it, captured on tape! Hubby just saw the kids laundry fight and caught it all on his camera. The kids are having a 'throw mama's clothes at each other fight" right before our eyes!

That just goes to show....every family has their DIRTY LAUNDRY!!
See it all for yourself! ^_^

Abbie the Birthday Girl

Here is our little girl's 'Big 3' on 9/19/08! She is obsessed with Dora, as you can see. In fact, she's starting to even LOOK LIKE Dora! ^_^