Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Crush That Ball! World Golf Village 09/13/2015 and 09/26/15

We made arrangements to have AA evaluated at the PGA Academy at the WGV; we have been thinking about doing this for awhile. Two golfing families have recommended this Academy, but with all the Summer tournaments, we decided to wait until now. AA had an amazing time with Anne Cain. Anne has all the professional toys for teaching and is a world-known coach and Golf go-to expert on several TV programs - and right here in our "backyard"!

Anne explained to us what AA does well and where she would work with her, so we were pleased and felt happy with our decision. The WGV is close to home (we can get there with no traffic issues in 25 minutes). Alyzabeth will continue with her local "short game" coach, Kathy Grant Nyman, as we are very attached to her, so for additional training, we believe this is a good move for AA. 
09/26/15 - First lesson:
"Flop Shot" Practice:
We ran into the Fleming's (Gavin's lesson); now we know at least three families (Mawhinney, Messana) who now have enrolled their child in this Academy. Good move for AA too!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Happy Birthday to Daughter Leaa!

Happy Birthday Daughter #1! To our daughter who lives life with love, liveliness and in living color! Her world is bright! Which makes our family the best!

AA and Crafts

Auntie Jean gave AA a macrame craft kit; using cording to make bracelets, headbands, lanyards, necklaces, etc. AA is not very big into making jewelry, but after writing her birthday thank you notes, we looked over all her gifts (from her Maine summer party too) and she decided to try making a bracelet. It wasn't too hard, but for a first time "macramer" one needs an extra set of hands or the right tools to secure the beginning of the knotting item. We made do, and now will make more!

The instructions said to tape down the beginning loop; it needs to be a lot stronger than tape; a board with a large nail would be best.
 I held the beginning and the "anchor" cords.
 The finished bracelet!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Nine Years Old and One Week!

Sunday: A relaxing morning, walked to church, cooked home-made stir-fry for lunch, watching the FedEx Golf Championship, a little football (Jaguars lost to the Patriots), and the NASCAR Chase (at least Carl Edwards and Jamie McMurray had decent finishes)!
We took a stroll through the neighborhood today...... the weather is cooler during the day, still hot (mid-80's) and humid (rained in the morning), just not to the extreme! AA wore a new top that has long sleeves and she was hot, so rolled them up! Tonight is the full moon, closest it will be to the earth in its orbit and also an eclipse!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Mid-Autumn Moon Festival - Saturday 09/26/15

The Mid-Autumn Moon festival is a Chinese family holiday to have a meal together, hang around gazing at the moon, children playing and making lanterns, eating moon cakes and telling family stories, remembering those who have passed and not longer at the family table. We invited a few friends at the last minute, to toast marshmallows, try a moon cake, sit and relax for an hour or so. With AA's bedtime routine, we only visited until a little after 8 p.m. The moon was very bright!
Here's more: Celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival by dining with family and then congregating outside under the full moon sipping tea, eating mooncakes and swapping stories. In keeping with the story of Chang’e and Hou Yi, it’s traditionally a time to moon gaze, reminisce about family members who have passed away and to remember loved ones who live far away. Kids are allowed to stay up late and parade around with their lanterns. Ancestors are remembered by burning incense and bowing three times in front of the honor table. It’s also a great opportunities for the older generation to share stories with the children or to read from a book of Chinese poetry such as what you’ll find in Chinese and English Nursery Rhymes by Faye-Lynn Wu or Maples in the Mist by Minfong Ho.
The kids weren't crazy over the marshmallows and s'mores, more interested in playing on the Wii games! The adults chatted and talked way too much about our adoption story; will move onto more current topics next time!
I was going to do some "Chinese Culture" activities, had a Chinese language coloring sheet, but didn't get to them; the kids seemed happy just to play together.

Ford got the fire going a bit too early, it was roaring and hot!
OPE Friends Bess (China - Adoption), her brother Jake (Adoption) and FI golfing friend Tyler (next to last from right):
We had a busy day with Avery's birthday party, golfing practice at WGV, the River House Octoberfest dinner and moon gazing!

Weekend - Golfing, River House, Fun!

Our weekend started very busy! AA made her newest (from her birthday) LEGO set - Mindcraft. It's every kids favorite video game.

I made home-made vanilla extract; I made it two years ago for Christmas gifts and decided to do this every other year.
Golfing at the World Golf Village:

Great view from the practice range:
I am always amazed when I do not kill a plant - the gifted aloe plant from Leaa and Jesse is thriving!
The River House had a dinner to celebrate Octoberfest; we raced back from golfing to get inline and enjoy the good food! Then we headed home to start the fire pit and enjoy the company of a few friends for "Mid-Autumn Moon Holiday".
Sausages, cabbage, sauerkraut, dumpling and dessert:
Enjoying our weekend!

Saturday - Avery's 1st Birthday!

Nicole and Jordan hosted Avery's 1st birthday party at their apartment complex's pool patio. It was a great place to host a pool party, the rain stayed away after the morning cleared at bit, the kids all had a good time in the pool, plus it had a "splash playground".

All crowded in; I don't think Mila like all the water in her face....

Nicole and family had a fun set-up with pool theme and make your own gourmet hot-dog buffet:
Avery had fun with her first birthday cake!
More splash time:
Trying to get a group photo of the "Grands" and AA (Dylan was sick, so Jesse stayed home with her):
Mila was being a good older sister, enjoying playing with the girls and helping Avery open her gifts!

Monday, September 21, 2015

Birthday Celebration Continues - Elementary School Marquee!

For a very small price, AA's elementary school will display names on the front marquee (we took this photo on Sunday evening, the 20th). Happy Birthday to AA!

She's NINE!