Way to go, Team Gina!!!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Last week, 80 plus members of  Team Gina came out to the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure to celebrate Gina and the amazing woman she was.  The race began at 8:00, but we all met up at 7:00am because it can take a while to gather that many people together.  Thankfully, the sun chose to show itself at sunrise because it was a chilly start to the morning!  Okay, maybe the mid 50s isn't chilly for most, but it sure is in our neck of the woods.  It was the coldest morning to date this fall.

Unfortunately, I couldn't take any shots while I was walking because I had to push Madeline in the stroller.  Last year, my sister and Andy took turns pushing both Madeline and Leah in their strollers.  However, Andy carried Josh in his arms because he's bigger now (and they only have one stroller.)  So that left me pushing Madeline the entire walk.

And unfortunately, this was the best Team Gina shot I could get.  I didn't have time to move all the extra strollers out of the shot before the group decided the previous photographer's shot was enough. So everyone started dispersing.
Will and the kids had special shirts made.  Will's said "My wife", and the kid's shirts naturally said "My mommy."
I'm not gonna lie.  It hurt to do that walk without Gina.  My heart was heavy, and no doubt, I was not the only one.  This entire month has been difficult.  She is missed by so many people.  Will and the kids are doing as well as they can.  They are all in counseling, and they now have a nanny living with them, who has been a tremendous help.

We all hung around for a little bit, enjoying the breakfast foods provided, including cupcakes as the evidence below demonstrates.

And this is what happens to your tutu when you sit in your stroller for the entire walk.

Here's a closeup of the back of Lexi's shirt.
Not only did my sister Deb make the girls tutus for the walk, but she also made some for the both of us.
Like last year, I also took a photo of the POPS girls.  Debbie (middle) and Donna (right) also worked with Gina and my sister at the same pediatric outpatient surgery clinic.  It breaks my heart that Gina is not in this photo.
Most of the team headed home after the race, but the POPS peeps headed into Brighthouse Stadium to see all the fun freebies folks were giving away...stickers, pens, paper, cups, scarves, etc.
Then I figured it was about high time I embraced the camera.  That's me on the right with my twin sis on the left.

I love this shot of Madeline with a pen and pad in her hand, sporting her bunched up tutu and the "leggings" I made her. This girl loves to write. So very Madeline, indeed.  And yep, you read that right.  My sister made the girls' tutus, and I made leggings to go underneath.  Since these "leggings" were my first attempt at sewing with knits, I went with an easy interlock, which you're not supposed to use for pants.  And I already knew that, but I wanted "easy".  So I did it anyway.  Well, they don't have as much stretch as leggings typically do.  So they're more like "skinny" knit pants.  But hey, I'm pretty proud of myself for figuring out how to add those cute ruffles on the bottom.  I had to whip out my walking foot for these pants, especially the ruffles.  Knits are not like wovens at all. They are very different.  But I'm eager and willing to learn.  Anyway, I can't wait to make more knit garments because knits are just so comfy to wear.

Well, our little crew finally decided to pack it up and head back to Deb and Andy's place.  The kids played together for a little bit before we headed back home.

It was great to see my sister, Andy, and Leah.  And it was great to see a lot of Team Gina members come out and show their love and support for Gina, her family, and breast cancer research.  I sure do hope a cure can be found soon.  So many ladies are being diagnosed these days and earlier too.  Cancer is a truly horrible disease.  And despite all the ups and downs during Gina's journey, she was like a bright shining star, always full of encouragement.  And it is the goal of her foundation, the Gina McReynolds Foundation, to provide encouragement to other families who also find themselves battling this awful disease.

We love you Gina, Will and family.  We hold you close to our hearts and will continue to lift you up in prayer.

Ni Hao Yall

Some fun with corn on our last day {Part 5}

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Well, we were truly sad to see our vacation come to an end.  We had such a wonderful time in Connecticut with our wonderful hosts, Michele, John, and Lydia.  John had to work that day.  So he had to miss out on the festivities.  After waking up, we headed to church and then out to brunch.  We had been hoping to take the kids through a corn maze that day, and that we did, despite the cold and drizzle.

Patrick and I had never actually gone through a corn maze yet ourselves. So we were certainly game.  Michele and Lydia were such troopers to indulge us, despite the lack of cooperation from the weather, as they could go again any time.  This farm happens to be right near John and Michele's home.
We had to walk through the Christmas trees to get to the maze.
The kids were on a mission to find 6 colored tickets so that they would earn a prize.
Madeline spent the majority of her time hanging out in Baba's arms.
But occasionally she would go running with Caleb and Lydia.
We were so impressed with their determination to find all 6 colored tickets, despite the fact that so many of the twists and turns seemed the same.

And the grand total?
Four tickets each!  I honestly didn't know if we'd even find one.  We were so proud of them.

The prizes for each kid was their own gourd.  (Sorry I didn't photograph them.)  After claiming their prizes, they went to pick out some pumpkins for painting.

Well, it was truly an amazing time with family.  Two wonderful celebrations and a whole lotta hanging out with great peeps.   Thanks again, Michele and John.  We're looking forward to seeing you again real soon!!!

Roy's surprise birthday party {Part 4}

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Yes, if you can believe it, I still have more photos to share from our trip to Connecticut.  Remember back in Part 1 when I shared that we helped two special people celebrate their birthdays?  First up was our niece, Lydia.  Second up was Patrick's Uncle Roy.  He turned 80 years old and his wife, Betty, threw him a surprise birthday party.  Over 50 people came out for the big event.  

Betty and Roy spend part of the year in Connecticut and the other part in Florida.  When they are in Connecticut, they stay at this lovely little cottage in Wallingford.  This place is gorgeous!  What a setting!  Betty took Roy to Mystic the day before (surprisingly, we did not run into them!) while Karen, their daughter, and sons, Rick, Allen, and Chris prepared for the big shin dig.  They all made amazing food, and others did also, including Ron, Betsy, and Michele.

The cottage is situated at the top of a hill.  It's so idyllic, a perfect location to snap a few photos.  The family photo below just makes me laugh.  I totally did not coordinate our clothes, yet somehow this is what we ended up wearing that day. lol.  Too bad Madeline is also sporting those grouchy furrowed eyebrows.  And well, the top half of Patrick's head blends in with the blown out sky.  Um, not quite the wall hanging family photo.  Oh well.
We did manage a few others.
Here's Patrick with his sister, Michele.

Down at the bottom of the hill is a little pond.  So very pretty.
Madeline was fascinated with all the leaves on the ground, and Lydia's red sparkle shoes.

This day could not have been scripted any better.  It was such a New England fall day- a coolness in the air, leaves changing, listening to football on our phones while the kids tossed the football around on the hill.

Madeline broke out in an impromptu rendition of her ballet number from her spring recital.
And she ran away from my camera every chance she got.
Either that or she just did her own thing, like trying to take her shirt off.  Nice.  First the pants, now the shirt.

Football is well loved and played in this family.  All three of Betty and Roy's boys, Rick, Allen, and Chris, played college ball. And now Allen's son, Eric, is playing too.  The littles had so much fun chasing after him and the ball.  Eric was so great with them.

Well, as you can see I spent most of my time behind the camera capturing images of the kids.  Lydia doesn't get to see her cousins too often.  So I really wanted to capture the fun they were having together that day.  Such wonderful memories were made.  Thanks Betty, Karen, Rick, Allen, and Chris for putting together an amazing party.  It's one day we will never forget.

Ni Hao Yall

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About This Blog

This blog is the place where shared our lives while waiting to bring our daughters Madeline and Havi home from China. (Our son Caleb was already home before this blog began.) It is now the place where we continue to share our life experiences, both big and little, as we try to glorify God and raise our 3 dumplings from China.

Feel free to join us as we journey through life, while I try to capture our days...

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