I am a wife to Kirk, a mommy to Ema and (fingers crossed) God willing Ema will be sharing that title with another baby we HOPE to welcome into our home by the end of the year. I am so blessed that putting it into words is hard. I have a wonderful family that supports me in everything I do. I have been blessed with Multiple Sclerosis - I say that because without it I would not know my sweet Ema Li - and I believe that God has my health under control and has a plan for my life. It's pretty sad that my ONLY hobby is running but that's what it is. I created this blog to keep up with memories of my family so I hope you enjoy!
This weekend was jam packed with excitement and I am so excited to be able to share this with you guys! About a year ago, we were contacted by a couple from Colorado who adopted a little girl from Vietnam. They had already gone over to Vietnam to get their little girl (Maria) and thought they had pictures and a video of Ema. We were so excited that someone could tell us a little about her and what she looked like. We had already seen pictures but it was nice that someone had actually seen her and that she was actually real. (Does that sound crazy) I guess after waiting 2 years for her you begin thinking she might not be real or something. Anyways, We kept in contact with them and once we got the word to go get Ema they were able to give us a lot of information on where to eat and things to do while in Vietnam. They helped us with knowing what to take and not to take as far as packing goes. Well, this weekend we were able to get Ema and Maria together. The last time they were together was in Vietnam at Ba Vi. It was wonderful to see them interact together and play together. Surprisingly, they had a lot of similar traits. The first thing I picked up on was their temper. Both girls really know how to have a tantrum. :) They are both TINY, have the same little scar on their left arm from some injection they receive in Vietnam, and both are very beautiful. I am so glad we were finally able to meet the Kremers and hopefully this will become a tradition to get the girls together. How often do you get the opportunity to see another child that was adopted from the same orphanage as your child. I think that Ema and Maria will really appreciate this more as they get older.
My life before Ema was pretty boring. It went a little something like this. Get up, go to work, come home, and get ready to go to the gym. Work out for an hour or two, go home, cook, eat, go to bed. Tiger games were squeezed in here and there and most importantly RACES were #1. It might sound boring to you, but we loved it. In July of last year, I dedicated myself to running a 5K everyday until we got Ema. I kept my promise to myself and I did exactly that. We completed all of the Road Race Series races and became road warriors. I said all of that to say, I miss running races so bad. I am very competitive and the adrenalin rush that you get when running races is CRAZY! Since Ema running is something I have to MAKE myself do. It's not that I don't want to, its just that at the end of the day all I am ready to do is see her. We have gotten back into our routine with working out and I have kinda gotten back into my routine of running. Friday night we tackled our first short run in Germantown. It was the Nike for Kids 5K. Pulling up into the parking lot and seeing all of the runners out brought back those butterfly's. Ema was matching from head to toe. She had her sun glasses, her snack and juice, and she was ready. Getting in the finish line was awesome. I found quickly that there is something that I DO miss about my life before Ema. RUNNING RACES!!!! It was a lot of fun. I did a lot better than I thought I would do since I have not ran outside since the half marathon we ran before leaving for Vietnam. I have done most of my training on a treadmill. It was hard to control my breathing due to all the excitement but I managed. My goal was to run it under 30 minutes and I did, my time was 28.05. I could have done better but since I haven't been running outside I was happpy with my time. I am ready for the next race already! Here are some pictures from Ema's first road race.
Ema's first Easter egg hunt was at her babysitters (Ms. Patty). My grandmother helped her hunt for eggs. At first she did not quite understand the concept but caught on quickly. Unfortunate now she thinks all eggs open in the middle and have chocolate inside. :) Here are some pictures from the Easter egg hunt with all of her friends.
Close your eyes and go back to your childhood with me. Picture yourself with your mom's quilts and blankets stretching them from one piece of furniture to another. Now, break out that imagination that you had as a child. Are you going to be a pirate, a princess, or are you just going to take your babies inside and take care of them. For me, nothing was as much fun as making a tent in the house and staying in it all day. I loved to stretch blankets across my room and allow my imagination to run wild. Ema's first tent experience was more fun for me to watch. Kirk and Ema got in and out of the tent thousands of times. Kirk put so much thought into it. Ema did not understand it all but she loved knocking it down. She would throw her juice cup on top of it and laugh when it fell. The picture of Kirk on the floor is a result of Ema throwing her cup down and it hitting Kirk's foot. I had to take a picture :)
I am so glad that spring is finally here. I love all of the beautiful colors that spring provides. The dogwood trees are absolutely gorgeous and the tulips, buttercups, and pansies love this weather as much as I do. What is even better is Kirk surprised us with a new porch swing and Ema loves it. I was able to get these quick photos in our backyard one day. I thought they were too cute not to post. This dogwood tree was given to us last year on Ema's Birthday. Our neighborhood gave it to us as a money tree and to help us on our trip. We have never got to see it bloom so this year we were able to enjoy it with Ema. Jan was so worried that it would not survive the heat of the summer but with a little TLC we got a beautiful reminder of how caring our neighbors are here in the Links. Thanks to everyone who pitched in to get us this. It is beautiful and every time we look at it we will remember you guys!
Posting this brought tears to my eyes. I still cannot believe that basketball is over again. Last year we followed the tigers all the way to the championship game and we had planned to do the same this year. We all know that didn't happen. We did get to go to Kansas City with Ema to watch the TIGERS and had a blast. Ema was a perfect angel. I have to admit, I was a little hesitant about taking her but I could not stand the thought of leaving her here and us being 8 hours away. We decided it might be fun to take her along, so we packed her bags and loaded her into the car and off we went to Kansas City. We did not make it into Missouri before she had found a way to squirt all of her tea out onto her clothes. She rode most of the way without pants. Once we got into St. Louis I thought Chick-fil-a sounded good. We put it into our GPS and before we knew it we were in East St. Louis and there was no Chick-fil-a in sight. So at 9:45 PM we ate steak and shake. It was Ema dream. Anyways, here are some pictures from our first road trip as a family. Enjoy!
As most of you know, we love the TIGERS! While in Vietnam, Kirk drilled TIGERS into Ema's brain and yes...this was her first English word. She loves watching the tigers play just like the rest of us! These pictures are from the the Conference Championship game. We decided to watch it from the comfort of our home. Ema was decked out in her tiger gear all the way from her blue hair bow to her blue sparkled purse. (thanks Ms Sheri)