Our Adopted 8 Year Olds for the Week

**The link to my grandma's blog on yesterday's post was wrong! You can visit her blog here. Leave her some comment love. She's the best & totally deserves it! Thanks friends!**

Good Evening Beauties. 
How is your Friday going thus far? 
It's almost the weekend! 
We've been super busy this week putting on an English Camp for our boys. 
They are wonderful.

Wonderful, like our own children kind of way. The good and the ugly.
Yesterday, Justin had to get a talk from Mr. Zach for disobeying him.
We have lots of talks about how to be encouraging towards each other, how to say nice things and how to be a good friend.
The whole concept of "If you don't have something nice to say, don't say it at all" just isn't taught here.
We also teach them cute parentie things, like covering their mouths when they cough and chewing with their mouths closed. (Also things that aren't taught here.)
Today, when I talked to Jack about having good manners and chewing with his mouth closed, he asked, "Why, Mrs. Heather?" As sweet and curious as can be. This has never come to his mind before.  
We made homemade pinatas. 
Today we took them ice skating. 
It was so much fun for Zachary and I to pretend to parents. 
I wish we could just skip right over that brand new baby hard work stuff and go to the fun, ice skating date stuff. :) 
Someone even asked us if they were our kids. 
To which, Justin and Jack laughed hysterically. 
They couldn't believe someone would think that since they are Chinese and we are American. 
We tried to explain the concept of adoption but they didn't get it. 
He'll make the best dad some day. :)

We are so thankful for our students and how we get the opportunity to love them. :)

Hope you have a great weekend!
Don't forget to start recording your house tours!! 
Come back Monday to link up!
I can't wait to see your casa's!

Chara's Belated Birthday

So, somehow like a terrible dog mother & blogger {dog birthdays are total blogging opps ;) }, 
I forgot about Chara's birthday. 
All year I've been thinking about her birthday because last year we didn't get to celebrate it, but forgot again.
Last year, she was in a cage by herself in Dongying, while we visited family in Texas.
I really wanted to make her feel so special this year! 
But.. I forgot. 
Until today. Well, tonight really. 
At this point, she's asleep on the bed next to us. 
And not in the mood for a party.
But I'll still let you celebrate her & her sweet life. 
Buying you Chara was one of the best decisions we ever made. You bring us so much happiness & cause us to constantly smile. We love you!

Also, speaking of birthdays, this week was my amazing grandma's birthday. 
You should probably check out her blog and show her some love. :)
Happy Birthday Week to you Grandma. Love you so much!

Here's a post, from way back when, 2 years ago, when we first bought Chara. 

Chara: The Puppy of Joy
Well, we got a new puppy. Her name is Chara. Her name in Greek means joy and happiness.

"These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full."
-John 15:11

Our prayer is that our family would have our joy in Christ.
And that Chara would continually remind us to have that JOY!
Chara is currently two months old. Her birthday is January 20th, 2011. We bought her at EMART Traders, at Molly's Pet Shop, in our city, Jukjeon. She is very sweet and healthy. "Molly's" is similar to a small Pets Mart. It has a pet hotel, pet hospital, pet store, puppy school and a grooming center. Its very convenient and is super close. The day we bought her the manager himself gave us a ride home. Truly another act of how hospitable South Koreans are.

She really is a joy in our life. We love her some much already.
Here are some pics for you to enjoy.
Our little baby...
SOO messy!
She has her own room...spoiled
so cute...

She's a cutie! Just as precious today as ever! 
Hope she brought some joy to your life today!
Happy Belated Birthday Chara!!


Progressive Dinner Date

When you can't decide where to eat because one place has realllly good salads, another place has amazing Italian food & wine, and another place has the best dessert,
you should just go on a 
Progressive Dinner Date.
This, of course, is the most logical choice. Why choose when you can have them all!? 
{Let's just ignore the food baby you have at the end of the night! Okay?}
 This is what happens when you only have a 30 mm lense with you in the back of a taxi.
First stop, Canvas. 
For glasses of wine & the best Greek Salad we can find in Qingdao. 

{Sorry no pics of the delicious salad. Just use your imagination.}
Next stop, Trattori Verdi, for authentic Italian pizza & wine.
Gorgonzola pizza with honey dip.
An almost devoured tuna and mushroom pasta.
We could only make it this far on the ham & spinach pizza. 
Fresh strawberries are in season here!
White chocolate dipped strawberries and The Office at home. 
Enjoying his strawberry. 

Do you have any fun date ideas?! 


A little bit of This, A little bit of That

Hey Friends. 
How are ya?! 
We're on vacation.
Have I mentioned that? Holla! Have I said that already? Probably. 
I'm only a little excited to be on vacation.
Zachary's excited, too.

Currently, our days  are filled with these two hams. 
Today we made fruit salad and home made rain makers. :)
I brought out lots of fruit and let the boys peel them and chop them with butter knifes. 
Then we mixed in some yogurt.
Jack enjoying his fruit salad. 
We collected two toilet paper rolls, filled them with rice, covered the ends and decorated.
They LOVED decorating them.
They could have done it for hours if I hadn't stopped them. 
 Zachary, the lucky duck, got an Iphone 3 from a friend on the cheap.  He was so thrilled but needed to get it unlocked and, of course, nothing is easy in China. 
We had to make our way to Computer City to have the phone unlocked, which took a few hours. 
But now he has an I Phone up and running! 
Last week, I went and had a facial and massage! It took 3 1/2 hours and was fantastic. 
Except the girl told me and hour into the service, "Please relax as soon as possible. This is a place to enjoy. Stress is not comfortable." So apparently I'm stressed even while getting a massage. 
Clearly,  I need to work on that. 
More massages will probably help, right? :)
The massage was only $15 with their trial card. 
I found another Chiltina (the spa) last night and asked for another trial card! 
Guess what I'll be doing for $15 this week? :)
Check out this picture frame. I'm in love. 
My dad got me a gift card to World Market for my birthday and I went a little crazy.
Everything is so affordably priced that my $100 gift card went so far. 
Do you love World Market, too?
Living in another country, you easily see how you can get excited over the smallest of things that remind you of home. 
I got super excited to find Jolly Ranchers in the store. 
Even though I'm not necessarily a huge Jolly Rancher fan it's still a little home comfort. 
This is some AUH-MAZING home made body scrub that my dear friend made for me for Christmas. 
I can't wait to share the recipe with you. 
It is beyond easy and leaves your skin feeling fabulous.

Justin & I found a new way to play Jenga. 
I got in the shower the other day and Chara followed me in. 
Apparently, she likes taking baths. 

Have a great day readers. 
I love you!


The Facts of Me

If you haven't checked out Whitney's blog yet, you totally should. 
She's a genius. I mean her blog title talks about wearing yoga pants. 
Of course she's a genius.
I was super stoked to see her link up this week. The facts of Me.
I've already learned some hilarious stuff about some of my favorite bloggers via this link up. 
Living in Yellow 
And now, it's your lucky day, because I'm linking up. 
Fact=  I freaking love to sleep. I will sleep to the very possible last second that Zachary allows me to and then I'll still probably whine to sleep ten minutes more. 
Why, yes, yes this is a fake picture of myself sleeping that I just took on my computer. 
Thanks for asking.

Fact=  Because of said love, my mom grew up poking me, pouring water on me, yanking my blankets off, anything to get me out of bed.
Fact=  I grew up doing beauty pageants. Don't worry, this summer I'll definitely scan pictures while I'm at home so you can be shocked and awed that I was one of the Toddler's in Tiaras girls. I mean.. I was actually like 9, but still. 
I'm the giant on the left.
Fact=  I also grew up playing softball and roller hockey. 
Fact=  I am obsessed with inline skating and am a little too proud about my skill.
Ya. I know. I can jump with skates on. Pretty much amazing. ;)
Fact= I can eat Chinese clams and edamame like no bodies business. They're freaking delicious.
Fact= I think my dog is the cutest thing ever. 
Fact= I also think my husband is the hottest thing ever. 
Especially while holding a bible. :)

Fact= I am obsessed with Harry Potter and The Office.

Fact= The Lord is always good. And I love Him. 

What are your facts?
Only 2{ish} more days to link up


Ice Ice Baby

Hey Gorgeous. How you doin'?
If you are here from Annie Sauce's January Group Giveaway,
Welcome! We are so glad you are here. Good luck!
Also, you should know, that this is what I look like in a face mask before you push follow.
You've been warned. ;)

I know. Super hot. Right? 
Zachary thought so when I ran around the house 
chasing him trying to get him to kiss me. 
You can't blame him for running. I mean, I did look like a zombie. 

But back to business.
The lake in our apartment complex has froze over for the winter. I don't know how we hadn't discovered it before now! As soon as I saw it I ran home to get Chara. I knew she'd be in heaven!
A whole frozen lake to run around on?! Heck yes!
I walked her down to the lake and without hesitation she jumped down on the ice! She had a blast running and sliding. She even climbed up the frozen waterfall. :)
I think that's awesome.
 It's been nice and hazy around here lately. Ugh.

I love watching her joy in even the smallest things. 

Speaking of ice. 
It's icy cold here. 
And coming from Texas, we knew I needed a new coat, pronto! All I had was a dinky pea coat, with a missing button. 
We searched and searched... okay, searched is extreme. More like we looked at H&M every time we passed by. But still, we searched. And just couldn't find a jacket that I liked, was warm enough, or that didn't make my hips look like the cup cake dolls. 
Ya, those. 
Which is totally cute if you're a child's toy, or have a cupcake under your dress, but not so much if it's actually your hips under there. 

But finally, at the grocery store, of all places, I found the perfect winter jacket. It's super warm, the perfect length, and is more flattering than cup-cake hipping. 
I know, you've probably seen it in other pics, but I haven't formally introduced you.
So, meet my new jacket. 
{Please ignore Chara photo bombing my picture.. and to lack of crop.}
Leopard print inside. Oh ya. ;)

She's keeps me cozy and warm. Faithful in even the coldest and windiest of weather. 
Hope you're staying warm this January!

Also, don't forget to plan for the Cribs V-log Link Up!
You can grab the button from my side bar! 
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