December 31, 2012

The winter break for Emma and Annya is also the Christmas and the New Year break for us, so we went to a couple of places, whipped up a bunch of not-so-presentable cakes, collected a bunch of presents. Of course, we took numerous pictures and videos still waiting to be processed.

For Christmas, we went to Louis' dad's (dad's dad's) house. Immediately after we got there, Annya and Yung checked the colorful presents lying under the tree. Then Annya begged before and after dinner to open the many presents that don't even belong to her. After which, we loaded our car full with toys and all sorts of things. Not bad to have a dotting grandpa, uncle and aunts.

Anny still firmly believe in Santa, even when we paid for the fancy dress, shiny shoes and hair clips right in front of her eyes. She asked: Did Santa put them in the store so you can get them?

I wish!

For new year, we went to the winter wonder-fest at Navy Pier. Navy Pier is almost like an extension of our playground. We went there routinely for the Children's museum, even paid for a full-year parking. The wonder-fest is definitely a wonder of colors, though winter is a far cry (do we still have winter?).

Emma is in a full mode of being a photographer, click, click. She was taking pictures of the trees, houses, ornaments, the snow flakes projected on the floor. Somehow she refused to participate the play. Oh, well ... Yung and Annya had great time running through the obstacle course, climbing through the ladder, then sliding down.

What fun!

We also went to a couple of parties to meet with my friends (though I really have very few!)


That is 2012!

Did we have good year of 2012? I guess! Just one year older. A good thing for the kids, not so good for me. But at least I learned to have a lot of fun with my guitar, and cooking!

Our winter / Christmas / New Year break

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

The winter break for Emma and Annya is also the Christmas and the New Year break for us, so we went to a couple of places, whipped up a bunch of not-so-presentable cakes, collected a bunch of presents. Of course, we took numerous pictures and videos still waiting to be processed.

For Christmas, we went to Louis' dad's (dad's dad's) house. Immediately after we got there, Annya and Yung checked the colorful presents lying under the tree. Then Annya begged before and after dinner to open the many presents that don't even belong to her. After which, we loaded our car full with toys and all sorts of things. Not bad to have a dotting grandpa, uncle and aunts.

Anny still firmly believe in Santa, even when we paid for the fancy dress, shiny shoes and hair clips right in front of her eyes. She asked: Did Santa put them in the store so you can get them?

I wish!

For new year, we went to the winter wonder-fest at Navy Pier. Navy Pier is almost like an extension of our playground. We went there routinely for the Children's museum, even paid for a full-year parking. The wonder-fest is definitely a wonder of colors, though winter is a far cry (do we still have winter?).

Emma is in a full mode of being a photographer, click, click. She was taking pictures of the trees, houses, ornaments, the snow flakes projected on the floor. Somehow she refused to participate the play. Oh, well ... Yung and Annya had great time running through the obstacle course, climbing through the ladder, then sliding down.

What fun!

We also went to a couple of parties to meet with my friends (though I really have very few!)


That is 2012!

Did we have good year of 2012? I guess! Just one year older. A good thing for the kids, not so good for me. But at least I learned to have a lot of fun with my guitar, and cooking!

Monday, December 31, 2012
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December 22, 2012

The very adorable Yung
May your new year be ... Sweet, Thrilling and Way Cool!

New Year Cards

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The very adorable Yung
May your new year be ... Sweet, Thrilling and Way Cool!

Saturday, December 22, 2012
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December 16, 2012

Every time I read about the Connecticut shooting at the elementary school, I cried. Still I could not escape the news, the images, the wailing of parents, the scared eyes of the survived children ...

Today I made chocolate-marshmallows and chocolate chip cookies, as I was making on them, my kids filed into the kitchen, happily took one then went back to watch their video. I did not even say No.

I know how lucky I am. I can hold them, kiss them, feed them, talk with them, watch them smile, throw their little temper tantrums, and squabble.

I can even not imagine what if my kids, any of them, was one of the little kids who were shot by some crazy gunman. The possibility of such craziness and unfathomable tragedy filled me with terror and sadness. I will never know how the parents of the kids who were killed would cope, or unable to cope, to face the Christmas, the new year, the forever and ever long road stretching in front of them.

Just darkness.

It is late at night. One by one, the kids are going to bed. They each said: Mommy, I love you forever and ever. Yung, the little one, tightly loop his arms around my neck, quickly fell asleep.

All is quiet and peaceful.

I know I am lucky. Each of them has their little problems. Annya teases Yung a little too much. Annya like to be whiny like a baby. Emma is shy around strangers. Yung is little shy too. But they are all incredibly sweet and happy, with bounty of easy smiles.

I know I would never have to face the madness and sadness, fears and worries that the other moms with violent kids have faced. Not in any foreseeable future. Not by any twists and turns of fate.

They talked about gun controls. To me, why it is even possible that someone is allowed carry crazy weapons; they are looking for motives for the killing, but how any motive is a "motive" for such atrocities?

There are so many things that are beyond reason or comprehension. But now, I just hold on the truth that I am so lucky.

I am lucky ...

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Every time I read about the Connecticut shooting at the elementary school, I cried. Still I could not escape the news, the images, the wailing of parents, the scared eyes of the survived children ...

Today I made chocolate-marshmallows and chocolate chip cookies, as I was making on them, my kids filed into the kitchen, happily took one then went back to watch their video. I did not even say No.

I know how lucky I am. I can hold them, kiss them, feed them, talk with them, watch them smile, throw their little temper tantrums, and squabble.

I can even not imagine what if my kids, any of them, was one of the little kids who were shot by some crazy gunman. The possibility of such craziness and unfathomable tragedy filled me with terror and sadness. I will never know how the parents of the kids who were killed would cope, or unable to cope, to face the Christmas, the new year, the forever and ever long road stretching in front of them.

Just darkness.

It is late at night. One by one, the kids are going to bed. They each said: Mommy, I love you forever and ever. Yung, the little one, tightly loop his arms around my neck, quickly fell asleep.

All is quiet and peaceful.

I know I am lucky. Each of them has their little problems. Annya teases Yung a little too much. Annya like to be whiny like a baby. Emma is shy around strangers. Yung is little shy too. But they are all incredibly sweet and happy, with bounty of easy smiles.

I know I would never have to face the madness and sadness, fears and worries that the other moms with violent kids have faced. Not in any foreseeable future. Not by any twists and turns of fate.

They talked about gun controls. To me, why it is even possible that someone is allowed carry crazy weapons; they are looking for motives for the killing, but how any motive is a "motive" for such atrocities?

There are so many things that are beyond reason or comprehension. But now, I just hold on the truth that I am so lucky.

Sunday, December 16, 2012
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December 11, 2012



Emma and Yung searching and reaching for the stars.  Someday they too will become stars.


This is our little Princess Annya.  She is the perfect daughter until you take her video watching away from her: then she becomes not so perfect.  Annya is doing very well in school so we let her have video nights on Friday and Saturday.  


 Daddy, are my glasses too big?  No Mijo, you can never have too much protection.



This is Mommy proud of her engineering skills.  I was glad that the building inspector took the day off.


2012 has left us.  We are all healthy and reasonably happy.  It has been a learning and fruitful year.  These are a few highlights:  Emma learning how to play the electric guitar and riding her bicycle.  Annya starting kindergarten and becoming a strong reader.  Yung attending a new daycare and getting potty trained.  Mommy didn't yell at Daddy too much.  

It is great to see the kids grow and experience life.  Each one with different dreams and personalities.  Someday soon they will be young adults and contributing to our world.  No matter how big and how strong they become, they will always be our little Emma, Annya and Yung.  2013, we are ready for you. 










The Next Chapter

Posted by Louis  |  No comments



Emma and Yung searching and reaching for the stars.  Someday they too will become stars.


This is our little Princess Annya.  She is the perfect daughter until you take her video watching away from her: then she becomes not so perfect.  Annya is doing very well in school so we let her have video nights on Friday and Saturday.  


 Daddy, are my glasses too big?  No Mijo, you can never have too much protection.



This is Mommy proud of her engineering skills.  I was glad that the building inspector took the day off.


2012 has left us.  We are all healthy and reasonably happy.  It has been a learning and fruitful year.  These are a few highlights:  Emma learning how to play the electric guitar and riding her bicycle.  Annya starting kindergarten and becoming a strong reader.  Yung attending a new daycare and getting potty trained.  Mommy didn't yell at Daddy too much.  

It is great to see the kids grow and experience life.  Each one with different dreams and personalities.  Someday soon they will be young adults and contributing to our world.  No matter how big and how strong they become, they will always be our little Emma, Annya and Yung.  2013, we are ready for you. 










Tuesday, December 11, 2012
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December 05, 2012

Ah, December already! There almost went 2012. With the joint effort of Louis and me, we managed to pull in about 28 posts, with half of them probably simply pictures and videos.

Very convenient. That is probably why people say 1 picture is worth 1000 words.

Annya has developed some sort of video addiction. She watched her Barbie movies 20 plus times, pony TVs who-knows-how-many times, now she discovered another show called Octonaut, she would beg, cajole, wail her life out if we say no to her (we say no anyway). I can see how she would fail the many tests and temptations on her way. But she is doing great at school, at least so far. She can read and did read many books. 1st grade math is a piece of cake for her. The kindergarten is so easy that she sometimes feels so proud and she also wonders why.

Yung has a bit of barbie-and-princess mania too, but it pales in comparison with his love of Toy Story, and balls. At home, he is a bit whiny. At home, he is also constantly fighting with Annya one minute, then play the next. But Yung is an angel at his school. His teachers gave him glowing reviews, and can see no flaws in him. I wonder what I did wrong at home.

Emma is almost the perfect daughter. She plays with Yung, helps out with dinner, policing Annya vigorously. Sometimes I want her to slacken off though, so I said to her, Emma, it is ok to eat some junk food, ok to watch Barbies movies 100 times. Emma is a bona-fide Harry Potter fan now, so the Harry Potter books I bought for her finally no longer just sit there gathering dust. She is doing great in school, other than the communication piece.

The kids are all right.

(As for me, just busy as usual. In Sept. I picked up Guitar, now I think I am good enough to entertain myself and the kids, the next goal is to become a recording artist. The following is the )

The kids are all right

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Ah, December already! There almost went 2012. With the joint effort of Louis and me, we managed to pull in about 28 posts, with half of them probably simply pictures and videos.

Very convenient. That is probably why people say 1 picture is worth 1000 words.

Annya has developed some sort of video addiction. She watched her Barbie movies 20 plus times, pony TVs who-knows-how-many times, now she discovered another show called Octonaut, she would beg, cajole, wail her life out if we say no to her (we say no anyway). I can see how she would fail the many tests and temptations on her way. But she is doing great at school, at least so far. She can read and did read many books. 1st grade math is a piece of cake for her. The kindergarten is so easy that she sometimes feels so proud and she also wonders why.

Yung has a bit of barbie-and-princess mania too, but it pales in comparison with his love of Toy Story, and balls. At home, he is a bit whiny. At home, he is also constantly fighting with Annya one minute, then play the next. But Yung is an angel at his school. His teachers gave him glowing reviews, and can see no flaws in him. I wonder what I did wrong at home.

Emma is almost the perfect daughter. She plays with Yung, helps out with dinner, policing Annya vigorously. Sometimes I want her to slacken off though, so I said to her, Emma, it is ok to eat some junk food, ok to watch Barbies movies 100 times. Emma is a bona-fide Harry Potter fan now, so the Harry Potter books I bought for her finally no longer just sit there gathering dust. She is doing great in school, other than the communication piece.

The kids are all right.

(As for me, just busy as usual. In Sept. I picked up Guitar, now I think I am good enough to entertain myself and the kids, the next goal is to become a recording artist. The following is the )

Wednesday, December 05, 2012
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November 12, 2012

For Halloween, I love the pictures. The kids love the candies. The day after Halloween, Yung said: "Mom, can we drive to Halloween? We can do trick-treating".

Another Hallowen

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For Halloween, I love the pictures. The kids love the candies. The day after Halloween, Yung said: "Mom, can we drive to Halloween? We can do trick-treating".

Monday, November 12, 2012
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October 29, 2012

Emma's first jack-o-latern

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Monday, October 29, 2012
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October 20, 2012


Happy Birthday Emma, it has been four years since we meet.  It only seems like it has been  a year.  You are now taller, smarter and sometimes ask too many questions.  Your best years are yet to come.  I'm just glad that I can be just a small part of your life.  Emma waters the roses and then cuts them to give to Grandpa.  She is like a little rose bud herself.  All she needs is a little more water, sunlight and in time she will become even prettier then the roses she cuts.  





Annya has started kindergarten.  She has made the transition well from preschool.  This is a picture of Annya getting ready to be the first female President.  She is just an arm length away from the red emergency phone and the panic button.  Her only demand is to watch more fairy movies.






Yung is handling the terrible twos very well.  Once in a while he gets a little whiny, but quickly gets over it.  If you can give him a ball and chocolate he would be in Heaven and life couldn't get any better for him.  Hopefully his love for balls will help him become the great person we are hoping he will be.

Emma turns 9

Posted by Louis  |  No comments


Happy Birthday Emma, it has been four years since we meet.  It only seems like it has been  a year.  You are now taller, smarter and sometimes ask too many questions.  Your best years are yet to come.  I'm just glad that I can be just a small part of your life.  Emma waters the roses and then cuts them to give to Grandpa.  She is like a little rose bud herself.  All she needs is a little more water, sunlight and in time she will become even prettier then the roses she cuts.  





Annya has started kindergarten.  She has made the transition well from preschool.  This is a picture of Annya getting ready to be the first female President.  She is just an arm length away from the red emergency phone and the panic button.  Her only demand is to watch more fairy movies.






Yung is handling the terrible twos very well.  Once in a while he gets a little whiny, but quickly gets over it.  If you can give him a ball and chocolate he would be in Heaven and life couldn't get any better for him.  Hopefully his love for balls will help him become the great person we are hoping he will be.

Saturday, October 20, 2012
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September 17, 2012

As students fail in classrooms and in real life, they get Ds and Fs, they fail to graduate, to get a job. Teachers, too, need to be fairly evaluated, if necessary, failed. Getting in the door or staying in the system for 10 years or more is not a one-way ticket for being rewarded as the best teacher. When students fail, as parents, we are trained to inspect ourselves and try harder to help our kids, teachers, should not they do the same?

Everything in life is a matter of give and take, everything is a dance of expectations and compromises, constrained by circumstances. When the city is nearly broke, when the schools of Chicago are at the near bottom, and the teachers are being handsomely paid, and still guaranteed more and more, is there any ground for sending parents and students in a limbo? I would like to see some apologies to already-struggling parents who lost their jobs or their pay-checks because of this.

We all get routine quarterly evaluations, based on performance (yes), percentage of goals reached, and the company's performance as a whole, why teachers would not acknowledge they have failed our schools? Instead, they complained parents do not cooperate, students come in classrooms stoned.

Every year, hundreds of parents waiting/fighting anxiously over, betting their life, on one spot at schools like Hawthorne, why? Because there are so many schools that suck, that if you send your kids there, you practically ruin them for life. Why? Because those schools need to be completely transformed, reformed. You cannot say teachers have done a good job, you cannot say teachers deserve their eternal job security.

I love the teachers at Hawthorne, I love Miss Murphy, Ms. Wilson, Ms. Espinoza, Ms. Elsabaie, in fact, all the teachers. But I also love new teachers, I have seen them have such hard time getting in, where is their fair chance?

Despite all the concessions, despite giving in on all grounds, despite we put our jobs on hold, lock our kids at home, the union is still "UNHAPPY". Anything more to give in?

We will come back, Hawthorne will come back, after all, teachers need to teach, our kids need to be educated. Still, please know, if you treat all teachers without differentiation in the name of fairness , you are treating some teachers unfairly, you are treating students unfairly.

We will come back, but I must say, at least for me, the wound has been cut so deeply, it will take time to heal, trust to be rebuilt.

Union once is the voice is depressed and oppressed, now they are a voice of depressing and oppressing.

Yes, I am against UNION.

Against UNION

Posted by Xun  |  2 comments

As students fail in classrooms and in real life, they get Ds and Fs, they fail to graduate, to get a job. Teachers, too, need to be fairly evaluated, if necessary, failed. Getting in the door or staying in the system for 10 years or more is not a one-way ticket for being rewarded as the best teacher. When students fail, as parents, we are trained to inspect ourselves and try harder to help our kids, teachers, should not they do the same?

Everything in life is a matter of give and take, everything is a dance of expectations and compromises, constrained by circumstances. When the city is nearly broke, when the schools of Chicago are at the near bottom, and the teachers are being handsomely paid, and still guaranteed more and more, is there any ground for sending parents and students in a limbo? I would like to see some apologies to already-struggling parents who lost their jobs or their pay-checks because of this.

We all get routine quarterly evaluations, based on performance (yes), percentage of goals reached, and the company's performance as a whole, why teachers would not acknowledge they have failed our schools? Instead, they complained parents do not cooperate, students come in classrooms stoned.

Every year, hundreds of parents waiting/fighting anxiously over, betting their life, on one spot at schools like Hawthorne, why? Because there are so many schools that suck, that if you send your kids there, you practically ruin them for life. Why? Because those schools need to be completely transformed, reformed. You cannot say teachers have done a good job, you cannot say teachers deserve their eternal job security.

I love the teachers at Hawthorne, I love Miss Murphy, Ms. Wilson, Ms. Espinoza, Ms. Elsabaie, in fact, all the teachers. But I also love new teachers, I have seen them have such hard time getting in, where is their fair chance?

Despite all the concessions, despite giving in on all grounds, despite we put our jobs on hold, lock our kids at home, the union is still "UNHAPPY". Anything more to give in?

We will come back, Hawthorne will come back, after all, teachers need to teach, our kids need to be educated. Still, please know, if you treat all teachers without differentiation in the name of fairness , you are treating some teachers unfairly, you are treating students unfairly.

We will come back, but I must say, at least for me, the wound has been cut so deeply, it will take time to heal, trust to be rebuilt.

Union once is the voice is depressed and oppressed, now they are a voice of depressing and oppressing.

Yes, I am against UNION.

Monday, September 17, 2012
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September 13, 2012

Congratulations on the CTU win! Take your time to celebrate, take a breath, no worry about Friday. If you want to take next week off for whatever reasons, we are all for you. Besides, Chicago schools are pretty much all crap anyway. You have our hearts and souls. You have Rahm's heart and soul.

CTU almighty!

I learned some negotiation strategies from CTU, call it negotiation 101:

1) Control the conversation. Be front and center. Just like Karen Lewis. Do you see Rahm anywhere through this thing? Maybe for 5 mins.

2) Be sincere, make some good one-liners. For example, tell everyone on strike: "This is a difficult decision". "To beat a bully, you have to stand up a bully". Or something like that. If my kid ever get bullied, I am just going to ask her to throw bricks at the bullies. Man, the union is good!

3) Be adamant. Refuse any, every proposal, until the complete or near complete caving-in. Do not worry about being fashionably late at the negotiation table. Let's see who's the boss.

4) Rally your friends and allies. Tell them: hey, teachers, ya'all dance and sing, have a good time. Hell, they did have a good time. Now even better.

5) Prevent any possible revenge. Rahm, you city is going to go broke? Not my problem, show me your money. Or wait, that is taxpayers (parents) money. Not my problem.

6) Make it clear. If your enemy think they are close, tell them it aren't so.

Very well done, CTU.

Can I join?

Oh, too bad, all openings are full and will remain so for the next 100 year.


Negotiation 101 - Learning from CTU

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Congratulations on the CTU win! Take your time to celebrate, take a breath, no worry about Friday. If you want to take next week off for whatever reasons, we are all for you. Besides, Chicago schools are pretty much all crap anyway. You have our hearts and souls. You have Rahm's heart and soul.

CTU almighty!

I learned some negotiation strategies from CTU, call it negotiation 101:

1) Control the conversation. Be front and center. Just like Karen Lewis. Do you see Rahm anywhere through this thing? Maybe for 5 mins.

2) Be sincere, make some good one-liners. For example, tell everyone on strike: "This is a difficult decision". "To beat a bully, you have to stand up a bully". Or something like that. If my kid ever get bullied, I am just going to ask her to throw bricks at the bullies. Man, the union is good!

3) Be adamant. Refuse any, every proposal, until the complete or near complete caving-in. Do not worry about being fashionably late at the negotiation table. Let's see who's the boss.

4) Rally your friends and allies. Tell them: hey, teachers, ya'all dance and sing, have a good time. Hell, they did have a good time. Now even better.

5) Prevent any possible revenge. Rahm, you city is going to go broke? Not my problem, show me your money. Or wait, that is taxpayers (parents) money. Not my problem.

6) Make it clear. If your enemy think they are close, tell them it aren't so.

Very well done, CTU.

Can I join?

Oh, too bad, all openings are full and will remain so for the next 100 year.


Thursday, September 13, 2012
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September 12, 2012

I want to be a CPS teacher now. I have two master degrees in education. I want in completely for the love of children, for quality equcation, though a median 70k a year plus the vacations certainly do not hurt.

I love teaching, I love childrens, seriously, but the full benefit package certainly enhance my love 100 percent too.

I have a family, so they need coverage too. It is lovely that CPS just promised to freeze the health care rate for all us teachers. Damn, this strike thing works.

Do not get me wrong, I will work very hard, other than dealing the students who never want to read a word, the parents who never listen to me, I will prepare my lesson plans, at least once in 10 years. I will grade students' shitty 100-word essays that have 99 words spelt wrong. By the way, it is completely not my fault that those little monsters cannot spell, the class size is too big, there are at least 28 of them, there is only one of me. The weather is too hot, Chicago is too violent, and those stupid SATs or whatever is too hard. I am too fat, too old to give it a damn. So do not evaluate me.

If you have to evaluate me, please do evaluate what I do, which is a lot. Please forget about the test scores. What do those parents do? Do they ever listen to me?
Do they just expect I do all the work for them. LOL.

Response from CTU 1 year later:

Sorry, the CPS currently is full. please try again in 10 years. Please be warned, we have a pool of laid off teachers will be considered first.

Response from CTU 10 years later:
Sorry, the city of Chicago has bankrupted. Down with Rahm Emmuael. Long live the union.

I want to be CPS teacher now

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

I want to be a CPS teacher now. I have two master degrees in education. I want in completely for the love of children, for quality equcation, though a median 70k a year plus the vacations certainly do not hurt.

I love teaching, I love childrens, seriously, but the full benefit package certainly enhance my love 100 percent too.

I have a family, so they need coverage too. It is lovely that CPS just promised to freeze the health care rate for all us teachers. Damn, this strike thing works.

Do not get me wrong, I will work very hard, other than dealing the students who never want to read a word, the parents who never listen to me, I will prepare my lesson plans, at least once in 10 years. I will grade students' shitty 100-word essays that have 99 words spelt wrong. By the way, it is completely not my fault that those little monsters cannot spell, the class size is too big, there are at least 28 of them, there is only one of me. The weather is too hot, Chicago is too violent, and those stupid SATs or whatever is too hard. I am too fat, too old to give it a damn. So do not evaluate me.

If you have to evaluate me, please do evaluate what I do, which is a lot. Please forget about the test scores. What do those parents do? Do they ever listen to me?
Do they just expect I do all the work for them. LOL.

Response from CTU 1 year later:

Sorry, the CPS currently is full. please try again in 10 years. Please be warned, we have a pool of laid off teachers will be considered first.

Response from CTU 10 years later:
Sorry, the city of Chicago has bankrupted. Down with Rahm Emmuael. Long live the union.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012
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I have been raging against CTU, every moment i read the news, every moment I saw the teachers in red dancing on the streets, at the CTA platforms, blocking the traffic ...

I am too small, too inarticulate, too powerless, too much of nothing.

But I am still raging, every day I say Goodbye to my two little girls who have to stay home, my oldest daughter has to play teacher for her little sister while my husband sleeps after working overnight.

I am raging, knowing the teachers making scandalously low progress or no progress in teaching, knowing that they make unreasonably, unjustifiably high salaries (710000 mean average) than every other working folks and they are still asking for more, and they are still taking all the winter vacations, summer vacations, spring breaks ...

I am raging, when I see them holding signs saying: "This is not about money". Yes, not just about money, it is about not taking responsibility, accountability. It is about fighting for their own rights, while leaving the children who they are supposed to be teaching, they are paid to teach, on the streets, at home.

I am raging, raging at city or the whole system is making concessions after concessions, being held by the nose, not able to fight back.

I am raging that I am not among the rich, that I can just pluck my kids out of the system and leave.

I am raging, knowing once this settled, once teachers laughed at everyone on their face, get their money, their pensions, their unshakable job securities, I have to send my kids back, yet I would forever have to view them from a different angle ...

I am raging ...

Raging against CTU

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

I have been raging against CTU, every moment i read the news, every moment I saw the teachers in red dancing on the streets, at the CTA platforms, blocking the traffic ...

I am too small, too inarticulate, too powerless, too much of nothing.

But I am still raging, every day I say Goodbye to my two little girls who have to stay home, my oldest daughter has to play teacher for her little sister while my husband sleeps after working overnight.

I am raging, knowing the teachers making scandalously low progress or no progress in teaching, knowing that they make unreasonably, unjustifiably high salaries (710000 mean average) than every other working folks and they are still asking for more, and they are still taking all the winter vacations, summer vacations, spring breaks ...

I am raging, when I see them holding signs saying: "This is not about money". Yes, not just about money, it is about not taking responsibility, accountability. It is about fighting for their own rights, while leaving the children who they are supposed to be teaching, they are paid to teach, on the streets, at home.

I am raging, raging at city or the whole system is making concessions after concessions, being held by the nose, not able to fight back.

I am raging that I am not among the rich, that I can just pluck my kids out of the system and leave.

I am raging, knowing once this settled, once teachers laughed at everyone on their face, get their money, their pensions, their unshakable job securities, I have to send my kids back, yet I would forever have to view them from a different angle ...

I am raging ...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012
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August 17, 2012

It is just about time to go to Walmart and give them several hundred dollars for back to school supplies.  Annya will be starting kindergarten.  Daddy, I need to clean my sleeping blanket for school.  Annya, your sleeping days are over, you are now too old to sleep at school.  Are you sure Daddy?...   Daddy, I have a secret to tell you.  It is ok if you want to tell someone later the secret.  I'm going to tell you in your ear so no one else can hear. Daddy, I don't remember if I'm 5 or 6?  Annya, you are 5, next year you will be 6.  Thank you Daddy.

Yung is doing well in day care.   His major motor skills are very good. Yung loves to play ball, it doesn't matter what type of ball he is happy, ready and willing to play.  He loves balls so much that he can just look at pictures of balls on the internet and be satisfied.  We have just painted his room and we are getting ready to put ball stickers on the walls.  He hasn't seen the stickers so it will be nice to see the smile on his face. Yung is also expressing himself more by using sentences, this is one of my favorite sentences.  Daddy, Daddy I can't fly, please help me get on the bed!

Emma is taking the big sister role and running away with it.  She folds the clothes very well and yells at Annya to do the same.  Emma helps mommy with lunch and dinner and can cook several dishes on her own. Every night she serves a bowl of ice cream to Yung and Annya before bedtime.  She is also very sharing and economical.  At the store she is always asking how much does it cost and do we have enough money to pay for it?  The other day I took Emma and Annya to the store and Annya wanted a snack (candy).  Annya picked out her snack.  I then asked Emma if she wanted something to snack on?  Emma replied, no thank you Daddy.  All I could do is smile and say no, thank you.

Back to school

Posted by Louis  |  No comments

It is just about time to go to Walmart and give them several hundred dollars for back to school supplies.  Annya will be starting kindergarten.  Daddy, I need to clean my sleeping blanket for school.  Annya, your sleeping days are over, you are now too old to sleep at school.  Are you sure Daddy?...   Daddy, I have a secret to tell you.  It is ok if you want to tell someone later the secret.  I'm going to tell you in your ear so no one else can hear. Daddy, I don't remember if I'm 5 or 6?  Annya, you are 5, next year you will be 6.  Thank you Daddy.

Yung is doing well in day care.   His major motor skills are very good. Yung loves to play ball, it doesn't matter what type of ball he is happy, ready and willing to play.  He loves balls so much that he can just look at pictures of balls on the internet and be satisfied.  We have just painted his room and we are getting ready to put ball stickers on the walls.  He hasn't seen the stickers so it will be nice to see the smile on his face. Yung is also expressing himself more by using sentences, this is one of my favorite sentences.  Daddy, Daddy I can't fly, please help me get on the bed!

Emma is taking the big sister role and running away with it.  She folds the clothes very well and yells at Annya to do the same.  Emma helps mommy with lunch and dinner and can cook several dishes on her own. Every night she serves a bowl of ice cream to Yung and Annya before bedtime.  She is also very sharing and economical.  At the store she is always asking how much does it cost and do we have enough money to pay for it?  The other day I took Emma and Annya to the store and Annya wanted a snack (candy).  Annya picked out her snack.  I then asked Emma if she wanted something to snack on?  Emma replied, no thank you Daddy.  All I could do is smile and say no, thank you.

Friday, August 17, 2012
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August 11, 2012













Summer fun 2012

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Saturday, August 11, 2012
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Mommy and Yung going down a slide.


Emma and Annya's first lazy river run solo.  Glad they made it back, Daddy may have been yelled at.



Emma showing no fear going down one of the largest toddler slide.




Emma getting ready for the Olympics.







(Annya) Emma, why are you so serious?



Hope Annya is ok after the 100 foot drop?







Considering Yung and Annya got sick just before our weekend getaway and Emma getting sick during the getaway, will still had a nice time.  Looking forward to our next escape.

Ottawa 2012

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Mommy and Yung going down a slide.


Emma and Annya's first lazy river run solo.  Glad they made it back, Daddy may have been yelled at.



Emma showing no fear going down one of the largest toddler slide.




Emma getting ready for the Olympics.







(Annya) Emma, why are you so serious?



Hope Annya is ok after the 100 foot drop?







Considering Yung and Annya got sick just before our weekend getaway and Emma getting sick during the getaway, will still had a nice time.  Looking forward to our next escape.

Saturday, August 11, 2012
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June 04, 2012





Who thought I could make dresses? I did, pretty ones. I made the floral dresses for Emma and Annya. Poor Yung, he is jealous.

Who thought I could make dresses?

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Who thought I could make dresses? I did, pretty ones. I made the floral dresses for Emma and Annya. Poor Yung, he is jealous.

Monday, June 04, 2012
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Ingredients:
Food coloring + water + starch.
A muffin pan.
A sunny day.
Some kids who like it hot under the sun!



Side-walk painting project

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Ingredients:
Food coloring + water + starch.
A muffin pan.
A sunny day.
Some kids who like it hot under the sun!



Monday, June 04, 2012
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June 02, 2012


Yung is about 70% potty trained.  He is nearly 100% trained at daycare but tends to give Mommy and Daddy a hard time going to the potty.  His answer to going potty is always NO.  We have learned that giving him bribes has helped.  At first Emma did a great job of tricking Yung into sitting on the potty several times but Yung quickly caught on and even gives Emma a hard time to sit on the potty.

The other day I bribed him by using the I-Pad, we watched train videos until he finished pooping.  Seriously, an I-Pad, my mom never used an I-Pad for me, all I could think of is what will Yung use to get his kids potty trained?  Here is a picture a Yung sharing one of his bribes with Emma and Annya.  When we were shopping, Yung spotted chocolate cupcakes.  Of course our answer was no;  but at time we were trying to get Yung to use the potty.  We then told him if he used the potty he can have the cupcakes.  He then went to the potty so we then bought the cupcakes.  There is a rumor going around that Yung is already potty trained but is going to milk all the bribes he can and share his rewards with Emma and Annya.

p.s. One day Annya and Yung are in the tub playing with the bubbles.  I can hear them from the next room.  Yung tells Annya that he peed in the tub.  Annya then tells Yung that it is okay because no one is going to find out:)


Potty Training

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Yung is about 70% potty trained.  He is nearly 100% trained at daycare but tends to give Mommy and Daddy a hard time going to the potty.  His answer to going potty is always NO.  We have learned that giving him bribes has helped.  At first Emma did a great job of tricking Yung into sitting on the potty several times but Yung quickly caught on and even gives Emma a hard time to sit on the potty.

The other day I bribed him by using the I-Pad, we watched train videos until he finished pooping.  Seriously, an I-Pad, my mom never used an I-Pad for me, all I could think of is what will Yung use to get his kids potty trained?  Here is a picture a Yung sharing one of his bribes with Emma and Annya.  When we were shopping, Yung spotted chocolate cupcakes.  Of course our answer was no;  but at time we were trying to get Yung to use the potty.  We then told him if he used the potty he can have the cupcakes.  He then went to the potty so we then bought the cupcakes.  There is a rumor going around that Yung is already potty trained but is going to milk all the bribes he can and share his rewards with Emma and Annya.

p.s. One day Annya and Yung are in the tub playing with the bubbles.  I can hear them from the next room.  Yung tells Annya that he peed in the tub.  Annya then tells Yung that it is okay because no one is going to find out:)


Saturday, June 02, 2012
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May 16, 2012

Some paints + some boring flower pots + little messy hands = Gorgeous flower pots.

Gorgeous flower pots + soil + 2-dollar-seeds = Spring flowers!




Our flowers are outside of our little newly energy-proofed nest:

Our gorgeous flower pots

Posted by Xun  |  No comments

Some paints + some boring flower pots + little messy hands = Gorgeous flower pots.

Gorgeous flower pots + soil + 2-dollar-seeds = Spring flowers!




Our flowers are outside of our little newly energy-proofed nest:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012
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