k is 11!

This year our winter break started relatively late, so k actually had to attend school on her birthday.  We do friend birthday parties every other year, so this year was a small family dinner celebration.  k requested Panda Express takeout, and my mom made Spam musubi and chap chae.  Unfortunately, my mom was not feeling well that day so she was not able to make it.





n photobombing the mini cupcakes.


Mini mango mochi with sorbet.

I am excited for k’s new adventures for 2018, including Outdoor Science Camp with her classmates, bridging with her Girl Scout Troop in San Francisco, and possibly two different week-long camps with church friends in the summer.  It is really difficult for me to believe that we will have a middle schooler this year!

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Sports Weekend

This past weekend was filled with sports.  k played in the VFW basketball tournament (two games Saturday, one game Sunday) and n had his regular LA Galaxy OC Saturday soccer game.  Although we felt busy, I know of other families with three kids playing in the tournament, so that could be like nine games, which is just insane.  I am also very fortunate to have my parents who are willing to take our kids where they need to be when there are overlaps.

It is fun watching our kids develop their skills and confidence in their respective sports.  Since now I actually have some memory for my phone, I have been trying to take more video.  To date, we have not had a good video of n scoring a goal.  I am so glad I was able to catch this one on video.  Be sure to turn on the audio for the full effect.

Yes, that is D at the very end: “FINISH IT!”

Last year, k’s team won the bronze division, so they were moved to silver.  They did not fare too well there, but I must say that k put in a good effort.  These are a couple of shots on her highlight reel from the weekend. 🙂

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k’s Baptism

On April 30, we rejoiced as we witnessed k’s baptism at our church.  The pastor who baptized her also married us thirteen years ago!

Praise God. k got baptized today! #baptism #evangelicalchristian

A post shared by Derek Christopher Lim (@derek.cal) on

PC: Glen Tagami

k made the decision to be baptized along with four other girls in her Sunday School class (one of them could not make it that day).  We are so blessed to have the support of our Wintersburg family and pray that she will continue to walk with the Lord all the days of her life!


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Bridging to Juniors

Last month, k bridged from Brownies to Juniors at Rancho Las Lomas.


The venue was beautiful, despite some drizzle.  The party planner mom in our troop did a spectacular job with the details, as usual.


D was one of the few who came prepared for the rain.


Instead of someone reciting all of the troop’s activities the past two years, there was a display board.


Flag Ceremony



This was the bridge that they crossed.




Friendship Circle


After the ceremony we watched the employees hang the parrot toys that the girls made at our house.



There was also a scavenger hunt for the kids to find all of the animals in the wildlife sanctuary.




Don’t ask my why n is wearing his sweatshirt backwards!


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“Half-time” for k!

Last month, k turned nine years old.  This was a bittersweet celebration since nine is half-way to eighteen years old!  How can that be?  This article about this milestone really resonated with me.  We were supposed to be in San Diego for her birthday, but D was sick, so we had to postpone our trip to the next week.  Although I did not enjoy being in the hospital just before Christmas when she was born, it is nice that she is usually on school break on her birthday now.



This funny girl wanted pumpkin pie for her birthday dessert!

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k’s 1st Grade Performance

k was chosen to have a small speaking part for the performance her grade put on for friends and relatives.  I know it is not easy speaking in front of a large group with a mic—we are proud of her!

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1st Day of 1st Grade


Yesterday was k’s first day of school.  There is a lot for her to adjust to: new (earlier) start time, new teacher, new classroom, new classmates, etc.  The school day is also a lot longer.  She seems to be handling it well, though. 


Her teacher (the one in the plaid shirt) is new to the school, so we don’t have any info about him.  k seems to like him so far, though.


Meanwhile, THIS has been giving me a headache.  I’ve given up hope, and our beloved Series 2 Tivo will need to be replaced.  It did last a good 8 years, though.  I’ve been teaching the kids that “people are more important than things” and I need to take that lesson to heart myself.

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Build A Bear & Farrells

k’s Daisy troop voted to have their end of the year party at Build a Bear.  This was the first time for k to experience Build a Bear, and she had a lot of fun.  I explained to n beforehand that he would not be participating, and he seemed to take it very well.  (He mainly tagged along for the ice cream at Farrells afterwards). 


Pumping in the stuffing


Giving the bear a bath


All boxed up.  I will share a picture of the bear another time.  It is quite cute, with its own Daisy outfit and shoes.


I’ve heard that the Farrells at Mission Viejo Mall is not as crowded as the one in Brea.


The troop ordered The Zoo, with a sparkler!


I borrowed this picture from someone who was closer to the action.


n realized the benefit of having a sister in Girl Scouts. Smile

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School Pictures

One thing that has changed since I was in school is that there are two school picture days, one in the fall and one in the spring.  In the fall, you pick your package, pay, and hope that the one picture that they take comes out well.  In the spring, you don’t pay, and they send you 5 sheets of pictures.  You pay for the ones you want, and return the rest to the school.  I wasn’t planning on buying a second set of pictures, so I guess their tactics worked on us.  However, we only paid for one sheet of small pictures that we can distribute to grandparents, etc.  The backgrounds are a real crack-up.  To wit:

k and lake

That doesn’t look unnatural at all, right?  Smile  There was also a waterfall background and some sort of European castle background. 

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In Praise of the Balance Bike

I first heard about the concept of a balance bike at my moms’ group. The basic idea is that kids need to learn how to balance before they try to put together balancing and pedaling at the same time. My parents bought k a balance bike (no pedals) for Christmas from Costco. It took a while in the beginning, but gradually k got it. Our neighbors gave us a hand-me-down girl’s bike a few months ago. k tried it, but she thought it was too heavy and didn’t like it. We had k try it again on Sunday, and within 1/2 hour, she was riding by herself! (I still have to give her a push to start her out, though. And, understandably, she only likes to ride where there is plenty of room). This process was so much less painful than what I remember from my own childhood. So, I heartily recommend skipping the training wheels and going for a balance bike! The proof:

Now, if there was only a “trick” to learning how to swim!

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