Wednesday, December 28, 2011

More time in Arizona

We took another road trip to Phoenix, Arizona about a week and a half ago now. The minivan worked out great (especially after a new battery!). Graham had a great time in the back seat...

Look at all that stuff we had packed up in the back! And we still managed to forget a few things!

Watching DVDs


Once we got into Phoenix, there were a few things we wanted to take care of - like the kitchen sink. Somehow, I just did not like the sink and faucet that was installed. Couldn't really get my pots in there! So... here's the before:

And ta da! Here's our new stainless steel sink and faucet. Love it! Love it! Love it! :-)And as usual, more trips to IKEA! By the way, the minivan has worked great during these trips too! Graham has been very helpful unloading: You got to love IKEA when they make you build your own furniture... NOT! And oh, Graham has been very helpful loading up the dishwasher too! Little stinker!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


When Graham learned to say the word "raining", he actually started to say it in Chinese first - "xia yu". Well, just a few days ago when it was raining again, he used the English word! It's so funny/cute how he pronounced it. And he started to say "Mornin'!" as well when I would walk into his room in the mornings.
And after the rain was done, I tried to put together the new cozy coupe that Grandma and Pop-pop bought for Graham for Christmas. I really can't remember the last time I gave up on putting something together. But gosh,... I really gave up this time! I might have to resort to looking at the instructions online. In any case, Graham still managed to sit/play with it for a little while:
And oh, by the way, I lost my screwdriver! Graham put it through the hole where the steering wheel is suppose to go. So now, he has a built-in noise-maker in his little cozy coupe!
Anyhow, this is as far as I got:
I put it aside and Graham obviously still wanted to play in it. Looks like he'll just have to wait until Daddy takes over. Although I'm rather nervous about that. Daddy loves using brute strength when it comes to fixing stuff!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Graham's first picture with Santa

Graham finally met Santa Claus for the first time last week, but he was too scared to even get close to Santa! So Mommy ended up taking the pic with Graham and Santa.
The picture was actually taken for free, which was very nice. We had actually bought a few things in the store - including a cute little souvenir plush puppy/stuffed animal. Unfortunately, the puppy disappeared by the time we got home! So, I guess technically the photo cost us $7.99+tax!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Bad hair day / Graham's first "real" hair cut

It's been a little over 4 months now since my hair buzz/donation. And... yikes! Talk about bad hair days! It's especially bad when I wake up in the morning after going to bed with a wet head of hair!
Graham does have bad hair day too sometimes, but I guess he still can't quite beat Mommy in that category yet!
He did finally get a "real" first hair cut. We went to a hairdresser designed for kids today - the seats were these cute little tractors and trucks. But gosh, he did not like it one bit once the hairdresser started snipping his hair! Graham pretty much cried from the very beginning until the very end of his hair cut. So, looks like I may have scarred him for life when it comes to hair-cutting!
He does look so much better now. Our handsome boy! :-)
I was quite surprised when the hairdresser actually put hair product in Graham's hair at the end of the session.
Well, he did have his bath so all that hair product is gone now. And he is down now for his nap with some wet hair. I'll be sure to post a pic once he wakes up! I'm guessing it's going to be "bad hair day" for him too!

2 hours later...
Hah! Almost as bad as Mommy :-)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Getting into the Christmas spirit

I really didn't want to spend too much money on decorations this year, so I managed to put some things together that I had found from our previous decorations and also from the garage! Hopefully it doesn't look too cheesy. Ha Ha!

So here is what I have in the front:
A close-up of the wreath:
And a close-up of those little "Christmas trees".
They are actually tomato cages turned upside-down!
Hmm... might need to use some tape.
But anyhow, there's actually a reason behind those logs.
It's to hold the "trees" down from the strong Oklahoma wind!

And I didn't want to leave our potted Thyme without any decor,
so... some red ribbons to spruce it up a little!
And the acorn fell from the wreath, so it found its place in the pot :-)
We do also have some lights around the back deck. But it was too cold last night to stand out there and take pictures!

And for some more handiwork - Bobby bought a new firewood holder but it didn't come with a mat. So... I managed to find some scrap fabric from last year's family winter pants and ta da...!
And the close-up:
I remembered doing these weaving art projects with paper back in Primary school in Malaysia. I think I was about 10 years old or so. Guess those art classes did come in handy after all! :-D

Graham's recent activities

We made a trip to the Oklahoma Aquarium this past week. We were joined by a play-date there, although Devan and Graham still don't really interact very much with each other!
We arrived early so we headed straight for the main attraction - the sharks!
However, Graham just loves to stare at the turtles.
He cried when we approached the raccoon, but did finally warm up to it a little:
Despite the colder temperature, we have been spending quite a bit of time outside. Graham continues to love to help Mommy sweep:
He also loves to push buttons in our new (used) minivan:
Never too late to teach him how to drive! Maybe he can help us drive it to Phoenix!
He does still love playing on the mower. I just wonder how he got back there in the first place!
And Graham still enjoys playing with his slide. He actually does go down the big slides now in school and also when we go to the parks.
He would say "wheeee!" when he goes down them. Very cute!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

"I love you guys!"

Graham has been talking a lot lately. Some of his new words this week are: belly, Elmo, boots, dinosaur, draw, and mouth. He did learn to say "I love you" on the drive home from Phoenix last weekend, but he hasn't said it since. Instead, he would now say "I love you guys". I think he got that from Grandma when we had her on speaker-phone during one of our phone conversations!
And oh, here's another new word that Graham has been trying to say.!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving / Graham is 18 months old!

It's been a while since I've updated my blog. That's because we have actually been away. Bobby, Graham and I drove out to Phoenix and spent 2 weeks there. What gorgeous weather! Low 70s with very low humidity - just perfect!
And I did lose my camera as well, so I didn't get a chance to take a lot of pictures. I'm still wondering what happened to my Hello Kitty bag. I have a feeling that a store employee may have stolen it from my car while I was not looking, but that's a bold accusation!
We did get a new camera but there was a defect on the lens. It was labeled as a "tough" camera but I guess it wasn't Graham-proof!

Graham loves playing in the backyard at the Phoenix place. I've told him lots of times about not touching the cacti. So far so good!
He loves playing with and kicking the pebbles and putting stuff into his mouth:
And Graham enjoys hanging off Daddy's chair too:
And other times, he just tries to escape the property!
We finally had the floors installed... and we love it! Here's the before:
And here's the after!
As you can see, Graham LOVES to sweep! And as you can also see, the quality of the camera started to deteriorate!
Can't believe Graham is now 1 1/2 years old. He is surely more than a handful now! It's getting quite difficult taking him to the store because anytime he sees something that he wants, it's "tis, tis, tis..."! And we've had a few meltdowns because of "toy separation anxiety"! Hopefully he will grow out of this one! And he has been wanting to walk more, which in a way is good (because he's getting heavier!), but at the same time, he just takes off! Thankfully he has been getting better about holding Mommy's or Daddy's hand.

We really didn't do too much this past Thanksgiving. Bobby wanted to go to a car show in downtown Phoenix, so we did that. And after that, we went to a friend's restaurant for an early dinner. No turkey but according to Bobby, they had heavenly olives! I guess I'll never know. YUCK!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

No more handbags for Mommy!

I can't believe this... I think I'm really losing my mind! Perhaps I could blame it on motherhood, but seriously, I'm pretty sure that when I was unloading from the shopping cart into the car, my last item was my little "Hello Kitty" tote bag. I only had one more stop at a different store, where I do remember just carrying my wallet in my back pocket. I did have to rearrange a few things in the back trunk and I didn't really look for the bag there in the mountain of other plastic bags, but by the time I got home, my little tote bag was gone! AND, I had the digital camera in it as well! We were going to get a new camera soon, but I was definitely not wanting to lose this older one! Crazy! A day later and I still can't figure it out! I suppose, if anything, I do still have my wallet. Phew!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Graham, our little parrot!

Graham has been learning to talk a lot these days!

In this recent video, he's trying to say "grape" and "thank you" in Chinese:
~ Grape = Pu tao
~ Thank you = Xie xie

And here, Graham is trying to say "There he/it is":

And finally, here is just one of Graham helping Mommy sweep up the leaves in the garage. Well... he tried :-)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Garage floor is stained - Finally!

Last weekend, Bobby and I finally stained our garage floor. We've been wanting to do that for the past two summers now and somehow, it just never happened! The climate has to be within a certain temperature during the staining process. I guess we always came up with some sort of excuse and we would just end up on the golf course!

Before staining the garage, I finally finished up painting the ceiling of the garage. It is the same color as the exterior of the house, but it looks a lot more blue! I also cleaned up the work-table. What a mess!
It looks so much better now!
On Thursday, I started to clear everything off the garage floor. I had to hand-scrub some of the stubborn stains on the floor. And after a few good rinses, the floor was so clean! There was no turning back now!
The first step was to etch the concrete. And gosh, it's amazing how dirty the floor still was! After a few more good rinses, it was good to go.
We had to wait for the floor to dry before staining it the next day. The forecast for the weekend didn't look very good though. But I told Bobby that we were going to stick to the plan! We even bought a space heater to keep the garage floor warm! Like I said before - nothing was going to stop us now!

On Sunday, once the floor temperature was warm enough (as well as in time for Graham's nap), we finally started to stain. That was the easy part. The difficult part was spreading those flakes! Bobby said that it was an art. He was building little cities and countries - as these flakes would pile up high on one another! I, on the other hand, told him that it was all in the wrist. Check out my own technique! :-)
We decided to start from the outside in with the garage door closed because we were anticipating bad weather on Sunday. We had prepped the outside of the garage so the rain would not come into the garage as it dries.
Probably would have been easier if we had the garage door just a little higher!
And probably shouldn't have taped everything down so soon. Sure made touching up a little bit more difficult!
Once the staining was done, Bobby was still quite skeptical about the duct-tape and tarp method on the garage door. Thankfully it held up quite well despite the tornado warning AND earthquake!

And... drumroll... here it is!
A close-up will probably help show what it really looks like:
AWESOME...!!! :-)

And we just can't seem to keep those leaves out! Good thing we have Mommy's little helper:
Graham sure loves that broom!

By the way, the deck stain is holding up really well too! Look at all that water on the surface of the wood!
It has been a busy two weekends but we are so happy with the final results! Moving on to other projects around the house. Never a dull moment! :-)