Monday, July 22, 2013

The Bliss of Eating

After four years of living in this house, we finally have a table to eat at. Ellie has been the most delighted at this new addition. On days when I don't have to leave the house before I wake up, I love sharing a bowl of cereal with her!

Of course, Ellie sees the concept of a dining table as a rather loose suggestion. She holds a similar view to the concept of putting food in the mouth, as the next few pictures show.

Of course, we don't mind. Our only rule is that she brush her teeth about 30 times a day, a rule to which she gleefully obliges.

Even though I've stayed fairly busy this summer teaching for Upward Bound and helping to run professional development workshops for math teachers, I have had substantially more daddy-daughter time. :) 

The lady pictured below is from the Korean church; she showed up on our doorstep one evening and said she really wanted to build us shelves for the shed out back. That was a welcome event in a series of outdoor renovation projects. As I dove into my PhD studies, the lawn was neglected and grew into a rather unseemly jungle. Thanks to some clearing from a guy named Dale, some floral help from Mom and Dad, and a lawnmower from my friend Derek, we've made significant progress (sorry, nothing pictured here).

 We've done a bit less of "taking Ellie along with us on a date" and a bit more of "taking Ellie to a fun place to hang out" lately.

Mom and Dad continue to come down about once a week for some quality time with Ellie.

Perhaps most importantly, Ellie has slept breast-free for the past two nights (albeit with me in the room sssshhhhing whenever she stirs); this will hopefully continue into a trend that will let JooYeon get refreshed before she starts classes in a couple weeks.

One more bit of good news... I was recently hired by OU as a visiting assistant professor in the math department. It will certainly be nice financially to have the stability of a full-time job after four years of scrapping this and that together in grad school. :)

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Birthday Numero Dos

Ellie has entered a new stage recently where she has a lot more personality. This means it's a bit harder to safely plan on hanging out somewhere like a coffee shop, but also means it's much more fun to take her somewhere where there's something for her to do (e.g., play, look at animals, dance, swim).

The results of her first eye exam were good, but she was a bit disappointed because she had really wanted glasses like her dad.

She continues to like hide-n-seek as she grows older (see laundry basket below), which is not surprising. The interesting thing is that I've noticed her occasionally playing hide-n-seek with herself!

This next picture is a bit outdated. It was taken on one of the last day of my comprehensive exams when Joo and Ellie came to offer me some support. The good news is that I passed, so I'm now at the dissertation writing stage. I'm rather excited about it, because I have an incredible chair who's willing to meet on a regular basis, three other members I enjoy working with, and a topic/methodology that is pushing me to learn quite a bit about things that are quite intriguing to me.

I let Ellie climb her first tree about six weeks ago, so that she could become like her "monkey" dad. It made me excited and a bit nervous to see that she appeared to have absolutely no fear of heights.

TaeGeom soon followed suit...

We miss Jusu and the kids; it was a fun three months together! Even if it was a bit crazy at times, there's a certain comfort to having action going on at all times (these sorts of balance points are what JooYeon and I discuss as we consider child #2).

The most recent blog entry showed pictures taken at Ellie's Korean birthday party; my parents also threw her a "U.S." birthday party. Knowing that Ellie liked to be in boxes, Mom created a car for her.

Ellie loved all the attention...

And she wasn't at all shy about digging into the delicious cupcakes.

While I went to DC for a few days for a statistical training related to my dissertation, Ellie and JooYeon stayed with my parents. I hear they had lots of fun adventures such as Ellie enjoying the Mad River mere moments before a huge water snake slithered by.

I returned just in time to meet Heather, Bob, and Anna.

Ellie and Anna met each other for the first time. They didn't interact too much at this point yet, but they certainly were aware of each other.

Actually getting Heather and Bob to Ohio was a much harder task than we had originally planned for. The airlines (American, in this case) were... slightly less reliable than they used to be. Whereas delays are not that bad, and cancellations are even tolerable when they reschedule a new flight, it seems like the new norm is cancellation without offering a new flight plan. It took Heather and Bob three tries to make it out in fact (each time they had to make the 2-hr drive from Alamogordo to El Paso). The one saving grace was that, apparently, Anna is a natural-born traveller and loved all of it!