leaving an inheritance

just thought i'd link this great post on the importance of leaving an inheritance for your children.  i thought it was particularly interesting that the author did not put an excessive amount of focus on leaving inheritance money.  instead, he emphasized that providing and teaching your kids a debt free lifestyle is the inheritance itself (at least that's what i gathered from the article).

helping your kids avoid being in debt during the first years of their adult life (whether it's paying for college, furnishing their own home, etc.) is an amazing gift that we as parents can give.  i know that we wouldn't be in the financial position we are today if my parents did not take the burden of paying for my college education.  we would definitely be in a way bigger hole. 

and now, we would like to do the same for our kids.  that's why we're doing this.  that way, when they begin their own life as an adult, they can start "fresh."  a clean slate.  it is another way we can be better financial stewards of God's money.  and beyond that, it is a way for us to begin to build our legacy.  how are we managing our finances today so that our grandkids, and their kids, and their kids can be helped?  and how can they help others around them with what we've left behind?  where is our focus?  are we living just for today or are we living for the future?


new artwork

as part of my husband's week long birthday celebration, he got a new tattoo.  since we moved here, he gets all his work done by dave at voodoo monkey tattoo.  dave always does a fabulous job, and turns my husband's ideas into something beyond his expectations.  but dave is also a very busy guy, and is usually booked solid every week.  fortunately for my husband, there was a cancelation earlier this week and dave was able to begin work on the new tattoo.

phase 1 is just the outline.  phase 2, the color, will be done in about 2 weeks (which was the next available appointment he had.  see...he is a busy guy!).

and since i didn't want to feel left out, i figured i should add to my own "collection."

mine was just done today by eric (who was great to work with and very personable), also at voodoo monkey.  i had a couple of different ideas in mind, but decided to go with the heart since aaron has one with my name on it and he has been waiting for a few years to get mine done.  i like how they both look similar but different at the same time.

so romantic, isn't it?


wordless wednesday::a special holiday only for me

more from my husband's birthday week extravaganza.

[in case you're not in the "know," i am married to a man who takes a full week of vacation for his birthday. every. year. i love you, dear.]

thanks to everyone (from birthday wishes to birthday gifts) who helped make his birthday special!

more wordless wednesday here and here.


top ten tuesday

 in celebration of my husband's birthday today, this week's top ten is just for him.

the birthday boy

top 10 lovable things about you:

1. the little sleepy hat you use for bed time.

2. your special way of preparing your overly-sweetened coffee (and now you've got me hooked too!)...cream/milk in the cup first, then the sugar, then the coffee.

3. having special cups that others (even me) can't use.  and if someone does use it by accident you'll make sure that they don't make the same mistake again.

4. taking a whole week off, every year, to celebrate your birthday.

excited about his birthday week extravaganza.

5. falling asleep on the couch pretty much the minute you sit down.

6. a little bit OCD that manifests itself in your sock wearing.

7. terror in the kitchen! (exploding microwave door, paper towel catching on fire, breaking the french press carafe...)

8. always willing to give your time to your kids, even after a long day at work.

9. filling our home with music, and getting our kids excited about making music and creating their own, fun, little lyrics.

10. your genuine love and comittment to the Lord (thank you for the example you set for me and our children and for leading our family in the way of the Lord).

enough with this paparazzi! 

happy birthday, A!

now go play your vandals happy birthday to me song and enjoy your day...




i've decided that you are growing too quickly.  the first 9 months have gone by much faster than i was prepared for.  please, slow down a bit.  just so that your mama can enjoy your chubby cuteness a little bit longer.

you are officially mobile, with your special way of getting around.  it cracks me up to watch you get on your hands and knees, rock back and forth until you get enough momentum to propel yourself across the floor.  and once you tire of that, you change it up and do a little bit of army crawling.  either way, once you figure out you want to get at something, there's no more stopping you!

and just today, you were in the kitchen with me trying to pull up on the handle to the broiler (don't worry, it was turned off) and pulled open the whole door!  i almost had a heart attack.

we saw the doctor today and you didn't even flinch when the nurse did the finger prick to check your iron count.  there must have been some extra fat on your fingers to mask the pain.  your height check put you in at 27 3/4 inches.  your weigh in put you at 20 lbs. 2 oz., or another way to put it about 9 lbs. lighter than your 3.5 year old sister.  hmmm... 

i still love all of your chubbiness.  those chunky cheeks and the little pot belly...i just want to eat it up.  i love watching you eat, seeing those chipmunk cheeks move as you try to gum all your food or looking at the rolls on your forearm as you grab for the food morsels on your tray.

i especially love those moments when you reach for my face with your sweet, little, chubby arms and give me the best slobbery, open-mouth kisses.  they make melt.  your sweet smiles and giggles brighten all of our days.  you can turn any frown upside down with that cute face.  we all love you so much, bubba!


night out with my main man

dinner: luxe in gordon square arts district...

the menu: assorted breads with olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette, fried calamari with marinara and sour cream dip, mixed greens salad with apples, walnuts, red onions tossed in a champagne vinaigrette, t-bone steak with blue cheese risotto and a red wine reduction sauce, beignets with raspberry freezer jam, chocolate sauce and berries to dip...

night cap: irish coffee and a chocolate lovers martini (with homemade chocolate ganache sauce) just down the street at stone mad pub wonderfully prepared by aaron's cousin.

fantastic food with my favorite man always makes for a perfect evening.


wordless wednesday::the bacon slab

we usuall buy 1 lb. of the thick sliced bacon at our regular deli stand at the market.  on our last visit, they had placed bacon slabs on the counter top which also happens to be at my husband's eye-level.  need i say more?

more wordless wednesday here and here.


maybe the pogues can use a back up singer...

in lieu of today's top ten tuesday, we bring you emma singing her own version of sally mclennane.

if you're not familiar with the original version, listen to it here.


the month of "g"

well, only over 2 weeks behind in posting this...

a letter of the month returns!  january was brought to us by the letter "g."

big G, little g:
these pages will be added to our homemade alphabet book as soon as we get through the whole alphabet.

g foods:
grapes are a favorite snack in our house.  we also bought ginger, and emma tasted some ginger powder (she also likes the pickled ginger that comes with your sushi).  we made gingerbread boys and girls and decorated them with icing.

we read about gideon in judges 6-8, and learned how he trusted in God to beat the midianites (we also discovered that God starts with the letter "g" too, what do you know!).  the first time through, we read through the whole story in the "regular" (a.k.a mommy's) bible, while the second time around we read the story through emma's bible.  i showed emma some lambswool to coincide with this section of the story, and then made a simple torch (found here) to coincide with this section of the story.

"g" memory verse:
i picked a verse that went along with our study of gideon:
trust in the Lord with all of your heart, do not lean on your own understanding.
(proverbs 3:5 esv)
"g"-themed books:
go wild girrafes
berenstain bears no girls allowed
God gave us you
giggle, giggle, quack
the gas we pass
emma's gift
go dog go
berenstain bears week at grandma's

i printed out pictures of family members and had emma sort them in a "boy" cup or a "girl" cup.

 glitter glue:
emma LOVES her glitter glue and was more than happy to do this activity.

glue/glue tray:
i set up a couple of glue trays for emma to do through out the month inspired from this site.  the first tray was "g"-centered (green pom-poms, green shapes, girrafe print shapes, letter G).  the second tray consisted of gluing ribbons on a paper towel roll.  the glue gets a little messy, so it was nice to have the cookie sheet available to catch all the drips.

we identified some things around us that were green: kitchen wall, mommy's phone, emma's green slippers, green grapes...and of course it was important to point the green lady (a.k.a. ibu, who really, really, really loves green!).

gastrointestinal tract:
okay, the technical term probably went  over her head, but she now knows what happens to food after she swallows it.  we traced her body on butcher paper and drew the basics of the digestive system: esophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine.  then we cut out some pictures of foods that we can eat to help your body stay healthy and strong and glued it inside her body.

since it is the middle of winter over here, we made a little paper garden by using this craft to make the flowers.  i found a small box which i filled with some foam peanuts i had lying around.  then, emma and i tore pieces of green tissue paper (left over from christmas presents) which covered on top of the foam peanuts for grass.  we stuck all the flowers we made into the box (the peanuts help hold up the flowers) and used the paper garden as a cetnerpiece for our dining table.  tres chic.

"g" people we know:
Gram, Grandpa John and Gibson (of course!).  Emma also learned that the word grandparents starts with the letter "g," and that she had four of them: ibu, grandpa, gram and pap.

"g" matching game:
i made 5x5 wordsearch putting in a letter "g" in each row.  then i printed off some letter "g"s on those blank, white circle stickers (that you use for garage sales) and had her match the g on the sticker with the g on the paper.  she had so much fun doing it that she wanted to match all the letters in the wordsearch.

groceries/grocery store:
there were plenty of opportunities to go grocery shopping last month.  we usually go to 3 different ones: trader joe's, marc's and giant eagle.

i made up a little guessing game to introduce her to sequencing and patterns with some cups and colored pom poms.  afterwards, emma made up a few of her own guessing games that mommy had to participate in.

emma learned the difference between an acoustic and an electric guitar.  daddy's black one in the dining room is an acoustic because it's hollow (there's a a big hole inside).  in the basement, daddy has 3 electric guitars, which requires a cord plugged into an amplifier for the sound to come out.  we counted all the guitars in the house (grand total of 6) and then emma enjoyed some play time with the les paul (dad was happy to help).

 we watched the video below (i skipped through the beginning to get to the good stuff) on how to make a gibson guitar...

...and learned that 2 of daddy's electric guitar's are gibsons.

we also made a trip to guitar center to look at all the guitars and try out all the other instruments there.  dad was very excited that a "field trip" to guitar center was part of the learning experience and couldn't wait to come along.

 we galloped and giggled with each other through out the house.

emma learned that her middle name, grace, starts with the letter "g." and she also learned that when mommy says, "gosok gigi" it means "brush your teeth" in indonesian.

and that's the end!  until next month...
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