Spring break was last week, and we had lots of fun! First of all, we burned some brush at my parents' house. TongJie got rides in the all-terrain wagon, and got to play in the dirt.
What fun! Although he's talking a lot more now, he still uses sign language in conjunction with his speaking, which we're thankful for because he's pretty difficult to understand. In the photo below, he's signing "dirty."
Jeff, TongJie, and I walked by the river on a nice, warm day. It was perfect for throwing rocks in the water.
The next day was Easter and we had a wonderful morning at church. We were there for a long time because both Jeff and I played our instruments in the orchestra for the first and second services. Usually TongJie and I just go to the second service, so he was there a lot longer than he's used to. I've seen a lot of people posting their family Easter pictures on blogs and Facebook, so I thought you all might like to see ours:
After church on Easter, we headed to Montana for a visit with my sister, Melonie, and her family. TongJie was an excellent car traveler. Here's a picture of him settling in for his nap:
He actually didn't sleep much in the car, but he did great even when he was awake. He entertained himself for hours playing with his little cars. We stayed Sunday night at a hotel in Missoula, then arrived in Great Falls on Monday mid-morning. The weather was beautiful in Great Falls, especially the first couple of days we were there. TongJie had so much fun with his Uncle Adam, Aunt Melonie, and cousins Drake and Levi. We went to lots of playgrounds. TongJie decided that he REALLY likes slides. Now the slides are his favorite thing about playgrounds.
One playground had a really long slide:
Drake was wearing slippery basketball shorts that made him go super fast.
It was fun to get out of town for a little while and spend time with family.
And we got some rare pictures of the three of us together. Usually either Jeff or I is taking the picture.
We got back home on Friday evening, and TongJie adjusted quickly to his regular routine back at home. We all had such a good time, but it was nice to get back to our own home all the same. Plus, we had missed Albert!
Our friends the Schells gave us an even smaller balance bike for TongJie to try out, and he's been wanting to ride his bike all the time now. At first, it took him five or 10 minutes to get the hang of it and he wanted me to be right there holding on to him, but pretty soon he was pushing me away because he could do it all by himself. Like the other balance bike that I mentioned several weeks ago, this one has two wheels but no pedals, so the idea is that the child learns to balance like on a real bike and later is able to skip the training wheel phase. We'll see how it works with TongJie. He's already getting the balance thing down quite well, and it helps that this one is so low to the ground and has a very wide rear wheel. And it looks like a little motorcycle!
TongJie has been rather obsessed with sheep and with "Baa Baa Black Sheep" lately - just ask Melonie and her family . . . there were near constant requests (from TongJie) for someone to sing "baa baa sheep?" while we were visiting. So I decided to make TongJie a sheep shirt. Well, actually I didn't make the shirt - I just bought a cheap plain white shirt from Walmart and then made a freezer paper stencil of a sheep design that I found online. I recently got an exacto knife, like a real one instead of just a razor blade that I'd been using for cutting out designs, and the new exacto knife is WAY easier for intricate cutting. So much easier, in fact, that I decided to add some words. I was going to put "have you any wool?" but then decided to just make it say "got wool?" TongJie likes it, and it looks pretty cute on him.
I like this time of year because of all the flowers blooming and the leaves coming out on the trees. It's so pretty around here, especially when the sun is shining! TongJie and I picked a little bouquet the other day.