February 26, 2006

I always knew Emma loves to sing. She started singing the moment she managed to mutter single simple words. When we played music for her, she always listened attentively and swinged along with the music. My mom and I sang little children's songs for her, like "three little tigers". Before long, she cut long sentences into short phrases and belted them out in pieces. We laughed so hard and she looked at us satisfied.

When she was away in China, when I called her on the phone, she often started the conversation or broke the ice by singing "Little swallow, dressed lovely, every spring you come over ..."

Now after spending 8 months in China, she has made leaps in her singing skills and capability. Not just a singer, she is a natural performer. Her aunt bought her a toy Microphone. So we say, "Emma, perform for us now." With the Mike raised to her lips, she started singing sincerely. She sings one after another, some long, some short, some good old children songs, some hot love songs that are playing all over China, some folk, some songs about "the great China, how i love you."

Bravo, Emma!

This little girl loves to sing

Posted by Xun  |  1 comment

I always knew Emma loves to sing. She started singing the moment she managed to mutter single simple words. When we played music for her, she always listened attentively and swinged along with the music. My mom and I sang little children's songs for her, like "three little tigers". Before long, she cut long sentences into short phrases and belted them out in pieces. We laughed so hard and she looked at us satisfied.

When she was away in China, when I called her on the phone, she often started the conversation or broke the ice by singing "Little swallow, dressed lovely, every spring you come over ..."

Now after spending 8 months in China, she has made leaps in her singing skills and capability. Not just a singer, she is a natural performer. Her aunt bought her a toy Microphone. So we say, "Emma, perform for us now." With the Mike raised to her lips, she started singing sincerely. She sings one after another, some long, some short, some good old children songs, some hot love songs that are playing all over China, some folk, some songs about "the great China, how i love you."

Bravo, Emma!

Sunday, February 26, 2006
Read more

1 comments:

February 24, 2006

On Feb. 22nd, Emma was back to Chicago, to us. We went to pick up her, and my parents.Shortly after we arrived at the airport, we saw her. She wore a red winter jacket with black dots, ear-length short silky hair, curious eyes, fair delicate skin, still very small nose and small mouth. I held out my hands, called: "Emma, Emma". She looked at me, studying, a few seconds passed quickly. I waited longing. Then she smiled and leaned over. There, she was completely in my arms. Holding her little body, I felt so good.

On our way out Emma started talking. Feeling the wind blowing against her, she said "so... cold". Soon she was attracted by the airplanes that flying all over the sky, she pointed up, here, there, "airplane, airplane." "Oh, oh, another airplane". We asked "Emma, how many are there?" She paused to think, then answered "Two".

The drive back home was full of joy and laughter. The night fell, all lights were on, car streamed before and after us, trains busily passed us, Emma was interested in everything. We have a shiny paper
windwheel in the car. I showed Emma how to blow it. She giggled and
said: "Ah, it is flashes." "Why I cannot blow it?" "Now you blow it".

We asked her:
"Where is Emma's home?"
"My home is in America."
"Where is grandma's home?"
She said "It is in Chengdu."
"Where is Chengdu?"
"It is in America."

Everyone laughed.

Welcome home, Emma.

Welcome Home, Emma!

Posted by Xun  |  1 comment

On Feb. 22nd, Emma was back to Chicago, to us. We went to pick up her, and my parents.Shortly after we arrived at the airport, we saw her. She wore a red winter jacket with black dots, ear-length short silky hair, curious eyes, fair delicate skin, still very small nose and small mouth. I held out my hands, called: "Emma, Emma". She looked at me, studying, a few seconds passed quickly. I waited longing. Then she smiled and leaned over. There, she was completely in my arms. Holding her little body, I felt so good.

On our way out Emma started talking. Feeling the wind blowing against her, she said "so... cold". Soon she was attracted by the airplanes that flying all over the sky, she pointed up, here, there, "airplane, airplane." "Oh, oh, another airplane". We asked "Emma, how many are there?" She paused to think, then answered "Two".

The drive back home was full of joy and laughter. The night fell, all lights were on, car streamed before and after us, trains busily passed us, Emma was interested in everything. We have a shiny paper
windwheel in the car. I showed Emma how to blow it. She giggled and
said: "Ah, it is flashes." "Why I cannot blow it?" "Now you blow it".

We asked her:
"Where is Emma's home?"
"My home is in America."
"Where is grandma's home?"
She said "It is in Chengdu."
"Where is Chengdu?"
"It is in America."

Everyone laughed.

Welcome home, Emma.

Friday, February 24, 2006
Read more

1 comments:

February 21, 2006

My dear daughter Emma will be back to Chicago tomorrow evening. Does she know how much I miss her? I am ready to pick her up. What will happen then?

Leo

A Big Day

Posted by Leo  |  1 comment

My dear daughter Emma will be back to Chicago tomorrow evening. Does she know how much I miss her? I am ready to pick her up. What will happen then?

Leo

Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Read more

1 comments:

Emma is coming home tomorrow. What is on my mind? Cannot wait to hug, kiss, talk to her? Yes. A little worried that she would prefer my mother or anybody else than me? That too. Wonder how to get her started at a nice preschool? Yes. And all the bed rituals, play routines, pretty girl's dresses, colorful childish bedding? Yes, Yes... I have been thinking all of these and a lot more. But then I realize I have a sacrifice to make.

Oh, oh, I cannot chain-watching movies at nights in a row. No, I cannot stay up watch my movies any more. I maybe able to watch one or two once in while, with a great deal of discipline. Or I maybe turn my interests into busy noisy happy sesame street episodes, but with caution, since it is not good for toddlers to watch a lot of movies or TV or whatever.

I guess I have to give up my hobby reviewing movies. I am no movie critics anyway, not even an amateur (my ability to watching movies is far, far superior to my ability of reviewing them).

What the heck? Emma is back. That is everything.

A sacrifice to make

Posted by Xun  |  2 comments

Emma is coming home tomorrow. What is on my mind? Cannot wait to hug, kiss, talk to her? Yes. A little worried that she would prefer my mother or anybody else than me? That too. Wonder how to get her started at a nice preschool? Yes. And all the bed rituals, play routines, pretty girl's dresses, colorful childish bedding? Yes, Yes... I have been thinking all of these and a lot more. But then I realize I have a sacrifice to make.

Oh, oh, I cannot chain-watching movies at nights in a row. No, I cannot stay up watch my movies any more. I maybe able to watch one or two once in while, with a great deal of discipline. Or I maybe turn my interests into busy noisy happy sesame street episodes, but with caution, since it is not good for toddlers to watch a lot of movies or TV or whatever.

I guess I have to give up my hobby reviewing movies. I am no movie critics anyway, not even an amateur (my ability to watching movies is far, far superior to my ability of reviewing them).

What the heck? Emma is back. That is everything.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Read more

2 comments:

February 19, 2006

We are family. Love!

We are family

Posted by Xun  |  3 comments

We are family. Love!

Sunday, February 19, 2006
Read more

3 comments:

February 18, 2006

Give you a big hug!

To my family in HongKong,

Hello, Moms and Dads, sisters and brothers, I am here to give you a big hug!

To Emma

I am the mom bear
you are the baby bear
Mom bear cannot wait
to give baby bear
a big bear hug

Give you a big hug!

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Give you a big hug!

To my family in HongKong,

Hello, Moms and Dads, sisters and brothers, I am here to give you a big hug!

To Emma

I am the mom bear
you are the baby bear
Mom bear cannot wait
to give baby bear
a big bear hug

Saturday, February 18, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 17, 2006

Today, 2/17/2006, my parents and Emma, accompanied by my sister, have set out to fly to Chicago. They now have arrived at their first stop HongKong and are welcomed by the big family there. As always, Emma is the shinning star. Praises for her have already travelled to me from miles and miles away. She and her many grandparents, aunts and uncles and a little cousin or something will tour HongKong briefly.

Have a good time, Emma and everyone else! If you read my blog from HongKong, please note that I send my regards and love,

Emma arrived at HongKong

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Today, 2/17/2006, my parents and Emma, accompanied by my sister, have set out to fly to Chicago. They now have arrived at their first stop HongKong and are welcomed by the big family there. As always, Emma is the shinning star. Praises for her have already travelled to me from miles and miles away. She and her many grandparents, aunts and uncles and a little cousin or something will tour HongKong briefly.

Have a good time, Emma and everyone else! If you read my blog from HongKong, please note that I send my regards and love,

Friday, February 17, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 11, 2006



A Little Artist

Draw a circle for the sun
or an arc for the moon
Doodle lines for the sunshine
or the moonlight

Tasty cookies, green trees
Fallen leaves, red shoes
You transform the world with
the crayons in your hands.

A little artist

Posted by Xun  |  No comments



A Little Artist

Draw a circle for the sun
or an arc for the moon
Doodle lines for the sunshine
or the moonlight

Tasty cookies, green trees
Fallen leaves, red shoes
You transform the world with
the crayons in your hands.

Saturday, February 11, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 09, 2006

My colleague Kristen was showing a pinkish baby girl's picture, swaddled in pinkish floral blanket, when I passed her cubicle. It was her friend's daughter. "Look, how big she has already got."

I glanced at it, trying to recollect the vague memory I had of the same baby two months ago. I managed to summon (or imagine) a wrinkly frowning little baby's face. The baby now looks sturdy, happy with a wide smile. She has big features, big eyes, pronounced eye lids, straight big nose, and wide large mouth. She has got every for a pretty girl except hair (Emma was born with a head of shiny soft black hair). It is kind of striking,

I wondered how they could grow so fast. In two months, they already charm you with their generous smile. I wondered more about how I have forgotten everything about how Emma grew, except some over-summarizations enhanced by baby-book readings. I do not really remember how she did sleep or not sleep throughout the nights in the first few months; I cannot really pin down the days or even the month she started standing up, crawling or walking. I cannot say for sure when she started muttering the first word that we had definitely understood. And the legendary, glorifying and gratifying moment when she said "mommy"? I cannot recall...

I am incorrigible. A couple of months ago, I was at a friend house. She has a little baby, 5 months old maybe. When I was handed over the priviledge to hold him, I was totally surprised I was no longer sure how to hold a baby. Guess this is not a bicycle thing, once you learned it, you would never forget.

I forgot everything. I am incorrigible.

I forgot all ... about how babies grow

Posted by Xun  |  1 comment

My colleague Kristen was showing a pinkish baby girl's picture, swaddled in pinkish floral blanket, when I passed her cubicle. It was her friend's daughter. "Look, how big she has already got."

I glanced at it, trying to recollect the vague memory I had of the same baby two months ago. I managed to summon (or imagine) a wrinkly frowning little baby's face. The baby now looks sturdy, happy with a wide smile. She has big features, big eyes, pronounced eye lids, straight big nose, and wide large mouth. She has got every for a pretty girl except hair (Emma was born with a head of shiny soft black hair). It is kind of striking,

I wondered how they could grow so fast. In two months, they already charm you with their generous smile. I wondered more about how I have forgotten everything about how Emma grew, except some over-summarizations enhanced by baby-book readings. I do not really remember how she did sleep or not sleep throughout the nights in the first few months; I cannot really pin down the days or even the month she started standing up, crawling or walking. I cannot say for sure when she started muttering the first word that we had definitely understood. And the legendary, glorifying and gratifying moment when she said "mommy"? I cannot recall...

I am incorrigible. A couple of months ago, I was at a friend house. She has a little baby, 5 months old maybe. When I was handed over the priviledge to hold him, I was totally surprised I was no longer sure how to hold a baby. Guess this is not a bicycle thing, once you learned it, you would never forget.

I forgot everything. I am incorrigible.

Thursday, February 09, 2006
Read more

1 comments:

February 07, 2006

Days in SiChuan. Photo Collage

I confess, Emma has never been to the places whose views serve as the backgrounds. No. Not the mountain high monumental Budda whose body has been encroached by mosses and who knows what. Not the unseasonably green cradled temple that overlooks the muddy river that flows quietly below. Not probably even the places that are shown on the side, not Wuhou Temple dedicated to Zhu GeLiang, a symbol of wisdom, nor DuFu CaoTang that is covered with hundred-year-old bamboos and crystalized the ancient architectural beauty.

No. No. No. I am not even sure if Emma has seen a huge cute panda with her own eyes. I do not remember I have ever seen one when I was in SiChuan. I did not have an awareness, of that SiChuan is a sort of hometown to pandas, until I went far out to northern China and someone, in an effort trying to impress me, told me so.

No. No. No. I just half heartedly wish Emma has been to all the places and has sticked her name somewhere for backtracing, something like "xxx has been here". So in a playful mode, I created a pseudo personal memory for Emma. Maybe one day she will ask me, holding the picture (together with others that I have edited, using a lot of free association), "why i do not remember that I have been there done that?" Hopefully she would not grill me like Oprah grilled Frey, the guy who created "A million broken pieces".

Days in SiChuan

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Days in SiChuan. Photo Collage

I confess, Emma has never been to the places whose views serve as the backgrounds. No. Not the mountain high monumental Budda whose body has been encroached by mosses and who knows what. Not the unseasonably green cradled temple that overlooks the muddy river that flows quietly below. Not probably even the places that are shown on the side, not Wuhou Temple dedicated to Zhu GeLiang, a symbol of wisdom, nor DuFu CaoTang that is covered with hundred-year-old bamboos and crystalized the ancient architectural beauty.

No. No. No. I am not even sure if Emma has seen a huge cute panda with her own eyes. I do not remember I have ever seen one when I was in SiChuan. I did not have an awareness, of that SiChuan is a sort of hometown to pandas, until I went far out to northern China and someone, in an effort trying to impress me, told me so.

No. No. No. I just half heartedly wish Emma has been to all the places and has sticked her name somewhere for backtracing, something like "xxx has been here". So in a playful mode, I created a pseudo personal memory for Emma. Maybe one day she will ask me, holding the picture (together with others that I have edited, using a lot of free association), "why i do not remember that I have been there done that?" Hopefully she would not grill me like Oprah grilled Frey, the guy who created "A million broken pieces".

Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 05, 2006

Everywhere, everyday, she plays. Everywhere, everyday, she grows

Every day, Everywhere she plays.
Every day, everywhere she grows.

Everywhere she grows

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Everywhere, everyday, she plays. Everywhere, everyday, she grows

Every day, Everywhere she plays.
Every day, everywhere she grows.

Sunday, February 05, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 02, 2006

The name Magdalene was planted in my head by my reading of Dan Brown's "Da Vinci Code". Since then, I kept meeting the name in various articles and books that quote copiously the passages concerning Magdalene in the Bible. But I remain undecided (indifferent too) about her role and the story of Jesus and Magdalene supposedly love and marriage. Like a child who neither could appreciate nor care the complexity or multiple dimensions in a person, the incessant inquiry and debate about her annoys me; like a child, I somehow wish there is only one parental voice, with every bit unquestionable certainty, declare that: "hey, do not worry about it. This is a bad (good) guy!"

But that is not the reason that I picked the movie The Magdalene sisters. It just offers another example how this name kept on sneaking into my consciousness. It also offers an example why we cannot relinquish our right of independent thinking and decision-making to religion.

(The Magdalene Sisters is a harrowing look at institutional cruelty, perpetrated by the Catholic Church in Ireland, and justified by a perverted hysteria about sex (Roger Ebert), and in the name of religion, sin or redemption or whatever self-righteousness suits the perpetrators of the virtual prison and slavery. The name Magdalene is borrowed because, by the Bible, she represents sexual shame and repentance and ultimate forgiveness by Jesus.)

Throughout the movie, I sat quietly, fixated and confused, chill slowly seeped through my body.

I was puzzled by the many sudden changing faces and moods of Sister Bridget (the head of the Magdalene laundry) possess and various odd acts she did. On a few occasions, ferociously she whipped the girls, she half shaved and half pulled out the girls hair; on another, she demanded the girls all standing in rows, naked, and compared their breasts and pubic hair; then in a rare moment, she coyly declared her love for movies, then she watched one movie with tears glistening in her eyes.

From moment to moment, I was confused also because of quality of the movie: raw, gritty, authentic sometimes almost grainy. The main characters in the movie are presented as so homely, their dialogues, though few and terse, are so direct and unembellished, as if they were really talks of miserable peasant girls. Together with the grayish, austere setting, plus an almost non-existence of music, it makes me wonder if I was really watching an home video. But powerful moments come from direct, powerful and desperate inquiry: "What in God's name have we done to deserve this?"

I am glad the movie is not turned into a heroic escape story with one inspiring hero, one ingeniously devised plan and soaring music. Like Shawsank. Instead, it assembles four very different females. One intelligent and quiet (Margerett), one compliant and eager to please (Rose), one temptuous and rebellious (Brendette), one so simple almost retarded (Clipinski). Their journeys of getting out were vastly different too. Margerett was simply taken away by her brother, Clipinski was sent to a facility for the insane, Rose and Brendette outpowered the senile and dumbfounded nuns, and ran, ran, ran the hell out of the asylum.

The scrolling close credits disclose that Magdalene laundry ensnared about 30,000 woman and it flourished between the 60s and 70s. It also disclosed the fates of the four females the movie featured.

The Magdalene sisters

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

The name Magdalene was planted in my head by my reading of Dan Brown's "Da Vinci Code". Since then, I kept meeting the name in various articles and books that quote copiously the passages concerning Magdalene in the Bible. But I remain undecided (indifferent too) about her role and the story of Jesus and Magdalene supposedly love and marriage. Like a child who neither could appreciate nor care the complexity or multiple dimensions in a person, the incessant inquiry and debate about her annoys me; like a child, I somehow wish there is only one parental voice, with every bit unquestionable certainty, declare that: "hey, do not worry about it. This is a bad (good) guy!"

But that is not the reason that I picked the movie The Magdalene sisters. It just offers another example how this name kept on sneaking into my consciousness. It also offers an example why we cannot relinquish our right of independent thinking and decision-making to religion.

(The Magdalene Sisters is a harrowing look at institutional cruelty, perpetrated by the Catholic Church in Ireland, and justified by a perverted hysteria about sex (Roger Ebert), and in the name of religion, sin or redemption or whatever self-righteousness suits the perpetrators of the virtual prison and slavery. The name Magdalene is borrowed because, by the Bible, she represents sexual shame and repentance and ultimate forgiveness by Jesus.)

Throughout the movie, I sat quietly, fixated and confused, chill slowly seeped through my body.

I was puzzled by the many sudden changing faces and moods of Sister Bridget (the head of the Magdalene laundry) possess and various odd acts she did. On a few occasions, ferociously she whipped the girls, she half shaved and half pulled out the girls hair; on another, she demanded the girls all standing in rows, naked, and compared their breasts and pubic hair; then in a rare moment, she coyly declared her love for movies, then she watched one movie with tears glistening in her eyes.

From moment to moment, I was confused also because of quality of the movie: raw, gritty, authentic sometimes almost grainy. The main characters in the movie are presented as so homely, their dialogues, though few and terse, are so direct and unembellished, as if they were really talks of miserable peasant girls. Together with the grayish, austere setting, plus an almost non-existence of music, it makes me wonder if I was really watching an home video. But powerful moments come from direct, powerful and desperate inquiry: "What in God's name have we done to deserve this?"

I am glad the movie is not turned into a heroic escape story with one inspiring hero, one ingeniously devised plan and soaring music. Like Shawsank. Instead, it assembles four very different females. One intelligent and quiet (Margerett), one compliant and eager to please (Rose), one temptuous and rebellious (Brendette), one so simple almost retarded (Clipinski). Their journeys of getting out were vastly different too. Margerett was simply taken away by her brother, Clipinski was sent to a facility for the insane, Rose and Brendette outpowered the senile and dumbfounded nuns, and ran, ran, ran the hell out of the asylum.

The scrolling close credits disclose that Magdalene laundry ensnared about 30,000 woman and it flourished between the 60s and 70s. It also disclosed the fates of the four females the movie featured.

Thursday, February 02, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

February 01, 2006

Everyone needs and desires of good luck. And there are lot of stories about the magic of turning bad to good, stones to gold with a single touch.

However, the cooler is about almost the opposite. It is about a total loser who has a god-bestowed ability of turning sour the luck of everyone including himself and everything including his life. Bad luck for some is good luck for someone else. He is a key player, the cooler, in a casino called "Sangrila" to stop the winning streak of its clients. Everyone is doomed to lose as soon as he stands near.

What happened in this man's life, we don't know. But when William Macy's character Benie Lootz stepped into the camera, his face (expressionless, tired, deep eye bags, kind of bloated like a dead fish) speaks of the joyless life he endures.

But good luck, or "lady luck" is right at the corner to turn the bad-luck gloomy man into a good-luck happy guy. He and a woman fell in love. Everything turns when this man is touched by love. In the casino, everyone he glances at, or stands nearby, or touches even just by his sleeve, is swept by good-luck-turned money.

Good luck for some is bad luck for someone else. In one day, the casino lost one million. So the owner set to stop the disastrous romance (for him). But good luck persists, love prevails. The cooler ended up winning 150,000 and happily escaped Las Vegas.

The storyline sounds pretty silly and very very melodramatic. It is. But somehow, with William Macy, Maria Bello and Alex Baldwin's acting, with we disregard the extreme scenes where good fortune bubbles up or bad luck crushes down, the movies feels real. It has very realistic touch and honest acting. Especially the sex scenes, it is raw, honest and sweaty, not a bit of pornographic.

The movie flows along slow, moody saxophone and sometimes mellowed jazz vocal. I love it.

The Cooler

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Everyone needs and desires of good luck. And there are lot of stories about the magic of turning bad to good, stones to gold with a single touch.

However, the cooler is about almost the opposite. It is about a total loser who has a god-bestowed ability of turning sour the luck of everyone including himself and everything including his life. Bad luck for some is good luck for someone else. He is a key player, the cooler, in a casino called "Sangrila" to stop the winning streak of its clients. Everyone is doomed to lose as soon as he stands near.

What happened in this man's life, we don't know. But when William Macy's character Benie Lootz stepped into the camera, his face (expressionless, tired, deep eye bags, kind of bloated like a dead fish) speaks of the joyless life he endures.

But good luck, or "lady luck" is right at the corner to turn the bad-luck gloomy man into a good-luck happy guy. He and a woman fell in love. Everything turns when this man is touched by love. In the casino, everyone he glances at, or stands nearby, or touches even just by his sleeve, is swept by good-luck-turned money.

Good luck for some is bad luck for someone else. In one day, the casino lost one million. So the owner set to stop the disastrous romance (for him). But good luck persists, love prevails. The cooler ended up winning 150,000 and happily escaped Las Vegas.

The storyline sounds pretty silly and very very melodramatic. It is. But somehow, with William Macy, Maria Bello and Alex Baldwin's acting, with we disregard the extreme scenes where good fortune bubbles up or bad luck crushes down, the movies feels real. It has very realistic touch and honest acting. Especially the sex scenes, it is raw, honest and sweaty, not a bit of pornographic.

The movie flows along slow, moody saxophone and sometimes mellowed jazz vocal. I love it.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006
Read more

0 comments:

back to top