On my bedside table…

This just came over the counter at the library and I think it is a MUST read:

When Did I Get Like This? : The Screamer, the Worrier, the Dinosaur-Chicken-Nugget-Buyer, and Other Mothers I Swore I’d Never Be by Amy Wilson

According to Harper Collins When Did I Get Like This? is the hilarious story of one mother’s struggle to shrug off the ridiculous standards of modern parenting, and remember how to enjoy her children. 

I’ll just add that to my beside table reads… which are as follows:

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this book – the first in a trilogy. 

Twenty-four are forced to enter. Only the winner survives. In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. Each year, the districts are forced by the Capitol to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the Hunger Games, a brutal and terrifying fight to the death – televised for all of Panem to see.

Fly Away Home by Jennifer Wiener – A new book from one of my fav Chic Lit authors! If you have seen In Her Shoes with Cameron Diaz, this is the author who wrote that story. 

Written with an irresistible blend of heartbreak and hilarity, Fly Away Home is an unforgettable story of a mother and two daughters who after a lifetime of distance finally learn to find refuge in one another. 

Meant for Each Other

I haven’t read this – but really want to! It’s a new book out by Scott Simon called “Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other“.   It is about Simon and his wife and their journey of trying to concieve to adopting two daughters from China.  The book comes out on August 24.

Here’s a link to an article about Simon and the book.  Enjoy!

i love dirt!

Back in June I was the lucky winner of the book i love dirt from Kristin at Life in the Hammer Home. i love dirt is a book with 52 different activities to explore the wonders of nature according to the seasons.  I had big plans to do one activity per week all summer long… but well… life happened and that didn’t work out.   Let’s hope for better results in weeks to come.

But it is never too late.  On Monday night Alex and I got dirty! We did activity #15 and played in a pile of dirt.  I recently dug a flower garden beside our deck and have not planted much in it – so we had a perfect playing area. We had shovels and hoes, as well as a few trucks to move the dirt around. 

I really think Alex enjoyed it.  He even wanted to touch the grub we found… yuck! (I was hoping we would find a worm – I’m not afraid of worms… but grubs are just gross)

The activity recommended turing the dirt into mud… but sadly I was not that brave.  Maybe next year.

I’m very keen with Alex geting  into nature.  My only hope is that he doesn’t think that he can always play trucks in my flower garden.

It’s going to be a long night…

Alex went to bed at 8pm.

Alex woke up at 8:40pm crying – got him back to sleep.

Alex woke up again at 8:50pm crying – got him back to sleep.

Alex woke up again at 9pm crying – put him in our bed – out instantly.

Alex woke up at 9:40pm crying – and he is STILL up – wide awake…

Not sure what is wrong… but considering Alex barely napped today – this is not normal…

Boston Day 2 & 3

Our second day in Boston started out pretty similar to our first.  We had breakfast at the hotel, took the shuttle bus and the subway into town. Alex was turning into a pro at riding public transit and loving it! Our first stop of the day was a tour of Fenway Park, the home of the Boston Red Sox. We wished we could have watched a game, however they were in Toronto… our home team – go figure. The park is very historical so the tour was pretty interesting – even for me.  I must admit it was pretty cool to be on top of the infamous Green Monster.

After the tour, we wandered through the Bay Back area, taking a wrong turn or two while Alex napped. That was fine – it was a nice day.  Another scorcher, but still quite nice.  I had to stop by the Boston Public Library of course – we didn’t go in, but I took in the beauty of the building.  Hey – it’s what Librarians do on vacation!

We then found the bronze Tortoise and Hare statues in Copley Square. It was kinda neat. As we approached them (because you know I needed a picture), I noticed that the boy who was currently sitting on the tortoise was Korean, and his parents caucasian. He was a few years older than Alex, about 5.  We didn’t speak but I smiled at the mother as they left. I just thought it was neat thinking that that is going to be us in a few years, touring around with Alex. 

After lunch we headed back to the wharf area to try to get onto a boat tour… and as we were walking… I found Winter and Summer Streets… where you can find Macy’s! I know you guys are all thinking what’s with this girl being so obsessed with shops like Target and Macy’s. In Canada we don’t have those stores – and I know from your blogs and from my previous Macy experience that we HAD to have to go in.  And I did not leave empty handed! I got a beautiful Nine West dress for a wedding this past weekend… perfect.  Then we wandered some more and discovered Marshalls.  Great store if you don’t mind scouring racks. We have a similar store in Canada called Winners, but it doesn’t have nearly the brands available.  Matt got quite a few good deals and I found a few things for Alex – including some cool plaid shoes.

Eventually we made it back to the wharf and got our tickets for the USS Constitution Cruise. It took us through the inner harbour to the Charlestown Navy Yard which was perfect. I had wanted to visit the Navy Yard but time wasn’t allowing it ,so at least we go to see the ship from afar.  Alex was yet again gaga over being on a new form of transportation – his true new love – a boat. And he was sure to point out all the other boats on the water – including one crazy boat that looked like a bus. I wish we had a better family shot – but Alex was  into making strange faces for the camera as you can tell.

After the tour we headed to Legal Seafood for some fresh Atlantic seafood. My lobster was fantastic. Matt enjoyed his medley of shellfish.  Unfortunately Alex was not at his best in the restaurant… It had been a long few days and he needed some serious rest. So back to the hotel for some R&R – and packing.

We had decided that we would try to drive straight through home on Thursday – and stop overnight if needed.  It was a 900+km drive (just under 600 miles) and we did it in just about 12 hours.  We stopped for gas, for lunch, bypassed the outlet mall since Alex was sleeping (boo!), and then we were at the border. We were through the border in just a few minutes which was a huge relief. Had dinner in Niagara Falls and then were home by 9pm. It was a LONG day – but Alex was amazing.  I think he watched the Tractor Tom dvd at least 4 times… [don’t judge – you gotta do what you gotta do – and we don’t make a habit of it 🙂 ] Red licorice was also very handy.  But it sure felt so good to come home and sleep in our own bed… 

Along the way we discussed next year’s road trip.  We think it will be … Chicago!

Day 1 in Boston

On Tuesday we woke up and got prepared for our first big day in Boston.  We had breakfast at the hotel, took the shuttle bus to the subway and then the subway into town.  Alex was in heaven. He thought it was so cool to go on not just a bus, but also a train!  When the subway would come for the other direction… and then leave, he would cry and cry… have I mentioned that Alex loves trains?

We had planned to meet up with Christine and Spencer at the New England Aquarium, but unfortunately due to traffic she was running a few minutes behind, so Matt, Alex and I wandered around the wharfs looking at the boats.  Alex was in awe yet again… he is also in love with boats.  When we got the text that Christine had arrived, we walked to the Aquarium and found her and Spencer watching the “otters” – sea lions.  It was so nice to finally meet them! After giving Christine a big hug, I took in Spencer. What a little man! He shook our hands and said hello – so mature 🙂 Alex was a little quiet – just taking it all in.  We went into the aquarium and checked out the penguins and the fish which were pretty cool. It’s amazing to think that there really are so many species of fish! For Alex was I think a little overwhelmed by it all.  The aquarium was quite busy for having just opened – at least when you compare it to attractions we go to around home. 

When the boys decided they were done, we ventured outside to Quincy Market to grab a bite to eat.  We were treated to a fantastic lunch at Wagamama (thanks Christine!). The boys loved their wontons and the noodles from my chicken ramen.  For a while it was a little hectic.  Both boys were trying to use chop sticks… in my soup.  Spencer as I’m sure you have noticed from C’s blog, is quite photogenic. He loves to smile for the camera!

And the boys were “bribed” with ice cream.

After lunch we did some sight-seeing. We saw Faneuil Hall, the State House, the Granery Cemetary, Beacon Hill (but not Acorn Street, it was closed for  a photo shoot), Cheers, the Make Way for Ducklings, and eventually ended up at the Frog Pond in Boston Common.  Christine was a great tour guide – I highly recommend her to anyone visiting Boston 😉  Along the way the boys fell asleep and we got to chat.  It was wonderful to finally talk with her after over 2 years of blog posts, messaging, and emails.

Now it was a hot day… very hot.  Supposedly it was only 29 (84) degrees, but the humidity was crazy.  Alex was sweating before 10am – that is how hot it was.  So we had a blast letting the boys (and us) cool down in the pond.

Unfortunately it was soon time for Christine and Spencer to head home. It was at this time that the unimaginable happened.  We discovered that Puppy, Alex’s stuffed husky dog, that he must have with him ALL the time, was missing.  We started checking the pictures to see when we last had him… looked like Quincy Market.  We had walked miles since then and our feet were already sore. So, we thought we will say farewell, then try to retrace our steps as much as we could.

It was sad to say good bye to Christine and Spencer, but hopefully we will meet again soon! Spencer gave Alex a big hug and I gave one to Christine, and we waved so long.

We started retracing our steps… back through Boston Common (checking out the homeless people’s carts), through the cemeteries, peeking into garbage cans, thinking our cause was hopeless. I should mention that Alex also realized that puppy was missing.  He was crying and crying for puppy… it was heart breaking.  But then I saw him…

I tell ya – besides meeting Christine and Spencer – this was the best moment of the day! We started laughing… I almost started to cry I was so happy. Alex had a giggle when he saw Puppy – but after that he didn’t let Puppy out of his sight – and we ensured Puppy was well strapped into the stroller.  He was just across the street from the State House – about the place where Alex had fallen asleep. Someone obviously realized that this was one well loved animal and someone would be looking for him so they placed it on a concrete barrier.  Thank you nice stranger!

We went back to Quincy Market for an early dinner at a great mexican restaurant and celebrated.  Then it was a nice stroll around Long Wharf and back to the subway and bus to the hotel to rest our swollen feet and enjoy some air conditioning.  Thank you Christine and Spencer for making our first day in Boston so enjoyable!

Road Trip! Getting There

Matt and I have plans to visit many of the big cities in Canada and the US (and hopefully Europe).  We’ve gone to Montreal, Quebec, Ottawa, Victoria, Toronto (obviously), Buffalo, New York, Cleveland, and Seoul (of course!).  And this summer we added Boston to our list! Why Boston? Well it is a beautiful city with a lot of history – and it is driveable. And it was an especially special location since Christine, one of my first blogging buddies, lives near there. 

On Sunday we left nice and early and started towards Buffalo where we would cross into the US.  This was the nerve-racking part of the trip.   I knew it was supposed to be simple enough to get Alex across with his Korean passport – but since it was our first time, I was nervous.  I had his passport and a copy of the adoption order, but about an hour into the trip I realized we didn’t have his Permanent Resident Card with us – and I wasn’t sure if that was something we were going to need.  When we go to the border, we waited for over an hour to get to the booth to show our passports – the traffic was crazy. After dealing with a not so nice man in the booth, we had to go into the Customs office to get Alex’s visa into the US. There we waited for yet another hour – not good when it was lunch time.  But all things considered – Alex was an absolute gem.  We got the visa and hit the road for the short trip to Syracuse where we were spending the night. (and no – you do not need a PRC with you – but I’m sure it would be useful if needed).

[For those who are Canadian readers, you can travel with your child and their Korean Passport easily to the US so long as the passport has the hard cover.  That means there is an embedded US Visa Waiver in it.  You just need to fill out a I-94 document at the border and you are through (thanks Emily!).  The visa is good for 3 months – then it has to be turned back in to the border.  It costs $6 US.]

We didn’t know how Alex was going to be in the car so we had decided to break the trip up into two for the way there. Luckily Alex was great in the car.  We had lots of snacks and we had purchased a portable DVD player – that was the best investment… that and a bunch of movies from the Library.   Once in Syracuse we went out for dinner and hit the hay – we were all pretty tired by this point.

The next morning was up early again and off to Boston. We were quite shocked at the beauty of NY state and Massachusetts.  I’m not sure why we were surprised – but we were.  The mountains were gorgeous and the small towns we overlooked as we drove were sweet and quaint.  We did what all Canadians do while in the US – stopped at an outlet mall in Lee where we picked up some good deals on clothes and had a quick lunch.  From there it was 2 hours to Boston.

I must admit we were actually very unorganized for this trip. No map – just our GPS to guide us – and looking back that was not the best decision.  So it wasn’t surprising when we got lost getting to our hotel.  The nice thing about getting lost is that we ended up at Revere Beach, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean – gosh it was beautiful! Once we got back on track with the GPS we arrived at our hotel. The hotel was quite nice – there was a pool, a shuttle to the subway station, and a complementary breakfast.  One problem – there was a Targ*t across the street but the Mass Turnpike was between us and the store – not an easy street to cross as you can imagine.  So no Targ*t for Krista 😦

After some not so award winning pizza like the brochure said… we got all settled in and ready for the day ahead…

Our Little Retreat

It’s official.  Matt and I are impulsive.

Just under a month ago we put in an offer on a piece of property up in cottage country – and as of yesterday it is officially ours!

It’s an island lot on Lake Cecebe, which is about a 30min drive from Matt’s parent’s cottage. It is vacant right now – jut a lot of trees – but we have some big plans – a dock, then a shed, then a bunkie and eventually a cottage (like in 15 years).

So… does anyone know how to wield an axe? We may need some help.

Naturalpath update

So I’ve been going to the naturalpath now for 3 weeks for acupuncture and I have yet to see any real results.  But mind you, it hasn’t been time for the intense endo pain yet (give me a few days).  I’m taking my supplements (when I remember) and feel like a bit of a pill popper (12+ a day). Through the sessions, I have learned some interesting things in regards to endometriosis.  One thing is that technically I am not supposed to be drinking coffee or drinking any alcohol.  Ha ha ha!! Yeah right.  I’m down to one cup of coffee a day, so that isn’t bad.  And well, some days I need a glass of wine – and will keep going with that.  Also I shouldn’t be having any fatty meats like bacon or lots of red meat.  Lastly – I was told not to eat anything stored in plastic. So really – I guess I can’t eat anything.  No yogurt, nothing stored in tupperware, no milk in plastic bags, no meat stored in plastic containers, no bread because of the plastic bags… the list goes on.  Why do you ask? I guess the plastic can leach some estrogen into the food, and that excess estrogen can contribute to the growth of endometriosis.

I was also told to rub castor oil on my stomach to reduce the amount of scar tissue – has anyone tried that? I have yet to do it – it’s one of the things I’m sceptical about. 

Honestly – I’m not really sure how much of the above tips I believe in – but I do think the acupuncture is for real.  I feel tingles down my legs and soreness at times during treatments and the naturalpath says that is showing that my che is opening.  Who knows –  but it makes more sense than the excess plastic and estrogen.  

So that’s how it is going. I’m hoping things improve – I have high hopes in the accupunture treatments… so we will see.