Wednesday, December 10, 2008

More Evangelyn

Here are some fun pictures of Evangelyn from the last month or so.

Two very exciting things have happened in the last week. The first - Evangelyn rolled from her tummy to her back! The second - Evangelyn laughed! The day before yesterday for the first time! I thought I was hearing things, but then she did it again yesterday and her dad was witness, too. Now, my favorite thing to do is try to make her laugh. Her favorite sounds to make sound like baby dinosaurs. We think those sounds are her trying to laugh and every once in a while a real laugh really does come out.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

In Brugge

We took a weekend trip to Brugge...roamed around the streets and canals, shopped at the Christmas markets, drank hot wine and hot delicious chocolate. It was Evangelyn's first trip across the channel and to the continent. She loved it and was so good...except at around 10:30pm. She fought sleep for about an hour and we didn't want to let her cry herself to sleep because we were in a hotel. She finally fell asleep when we put her in her stroller and pushed it back and forth in the hotel room.

Friday, September 5, 2008

"o" face

One of our favorite faces and Evangelyn's way of saying "Oh, I'm hungry. Feed me now, please, before I start to cry."

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Big Belly

I had to post this cause it still amazes me how big a belly can actually grow...and then be gone within just a few days. This was in the midst of contractions, just before we headed to the hospital and a 9 1/2 hour adventure until Evangelyn (ee-van-gel-in, phonetic spelling) was born, hence the I-can't-look-in-the-camera face.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Evangelyn Patricia Kay Chong

She was born August 21, 9:06am, 7lbs 1oz
...and is the cutest baby girl, even when she's farting and pooping, spitting up milk and crying at 3 in the morning...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

bamboo, bugs, and batteries

Pray for our car.

The baby's due in 5 days and yesterday our car wouldn't start. This is our new used car that we bought about a month ago so we could have a 4-door. We think and have been told that it probably just needs a new battery, which we're getting tomorrow. Let's just hope that is all it needs. At least we haven't sold our old BMW, yet. If I do go into labour, we'll have transportation. It'll just take us longer to get to the hospital since the BMW likes to stall at most stops.

I thought I'd post some pics of the baby's half-room.

She's going to share it with Chris cause it's his "closet." They don't build many houses with closets here in England and use wardrobes instead. We tried having my wardrobe and Chris's in our bedroom, but it felt like the walls were falling in on us, so he and the baby will share. We figure that a baby doesn't really need a whole room anyway. I had fun a few weeks ago finding images of bugs and bamboo to make into stencils, and we decorated the baby's crib bumper. It was quite a process, but very satisfying.

Here's a fun one...
Chris's egg turned into an egg-man this morning.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Summer Travels

Of course, our summer began with TASIS Graduation and the end of school. We then took a short trip to San Clemente to hang out with friends and family. After returning to England, Jeremy visited for about a week. We went to London and saw "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. We also took a day trip down to the coast and stopped at a castle along the way. After Jeremy left, we had our own 4th of July celebration, renting "the Patriot" and making American flag cakes. It didn't compare to the 4th in D.C., but it was better than nothing. We drove up to Liverpool for about a day and explored the hometown of the Beatles. Our next stop was the Peak District, one of England's national parks. We stayed in Bakewell, where they supposedly bake well. We weren't big fans of their famous Bakewell tart, though. The Peaks are filled with walks through moors and towns. We did one near Heathersage, a short walk, of course, since I'm pretty heavy these days. I was very proud to have done a four mile walk being at the end of my 8th month.

Monday, July 14, 2008

29 more days!

Only four more weeks until my due date! I really can't wait. You can see how huge I am and I just keep getting more enormous. Carrying this much weight is not fun, especially when I have to pick something up off the floor or roll over in the middle of the night. It is far from effortless. As for the other not-so-fun symptoms of pregnancy, I've got numb, tingly fingers. It started occasionally and is now almost all the time. It feels very strange to type without feeling the keys. Other than the heaviness, numbness, indigestion, and sleepless nights, I can't complain. I know there are SO many other worse things I could be experiencing.

The baby's room is just about ready...have I mentioned that she's a girl for sure? We got another ultrasound in California and two technicians verified. Back to the room...we got our crib a few days ago, and it's all set up. We joined an NCT (National Childcare Trust) class all about the birthing process and are learning all sorts of facts and techniques to make the whole experience easier. We visited the new hospital and it already appears much nicer than the original, so I feel even more confident and comfortable.

The baby still moves a lot! Now the movements are much more visible from the outside and strong on the inside. I took a video, but Blogger won't let me add it right now. I'll get it up when I can.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Beach Ball Bump

This is my belly at 29 weeks. Everything is still growing smoothly and steadily. I'm getting used to being bigger, but I still open doors into my big bump. The other day, I turned sideways to get through a narrower area and realized the turning was pointless. I'm at least as wide front to back as I am side to side now.

The baby moves what seems like all the time. I love it. Hearing the heartbeat is also amazing...whoosh,'s like ocean waves. Today, the doctor and I heard mine and the baby's heartbeats together.

Fruit is still the most delicious thing I could eat these days...strawberries, kiwi, pineapple, blueberries, plums, raspberries, mango...yum! Just writing those words makes me wish I had one to pop in my mouth at this moment, but I'm in the dorm supervising study hall, fruitless.

I have a new hospital to deliver at after a scare about the original one. I was firmly told, "do your research" by a co-worker, so I did. I talked to friends and read reviews by the health commission. There were four ratings a hospital could receive:

Best Performing
Better Performing
Fair Performing
Least Well Performing

My original hospital received Least Well Performing. That was not very encouraging, but I found one in the area that received Best Performing and was so relieved after I talked to my midwife and found out I have a choice. Now I'm going to what I'm confident will be a better hospital. Phew!

Friday, May 23, 2008


May 23...

We finished our mysterious puzzle...but still have no idea where it came from. The starred center is where my parents' house is located.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I'm Puzzled

Yesterday, I checked my mail box after work and found a package. I was excited, since my birthday's coming up and thought that perhaps it was my first birthday gift. As soon as I opened it, I became very puzzled. It was a puzzle. I haven't put together a puzzle since I was in elementary school. Who would give me a puzzle? I have no idea because there was no sender's name, no return address other than that of the puzzle company. Weird. Even weirder, this puzzle is not just any ordinary puzzle, but a very special one. It is a puzzle of San Clemente with my parents' house, where I lived most of my life, in the center. Now, that means whoever sent it must know me and know very specifically where I am from and where I am now.

Puzzle 1: fit the cardboard pieces together
Puzzle 2: find out who sent the anonymous puzzle

Sunday, May 11, 2008

i should not have woken up...

...this morning.

It's 11:00 a.m. and I've been awake two hours. I had a terrible craving for pancakes and just enough ingredients to make some. After I added the milk, I decided to have a glass. I gulped down three gulps before I realized it was bad, rotten, stinky, pukey milk. I spit it out, started gagging and got rid of the rest in the toilet. EW! YUCK! I brushed my teeth, gargled with mouthwash, drank some water, and ate some skittles to try and get the putrid taste out of my senses. I was finally okay and still wanted pancakes, but had no more eggs or butter. I drove around the corner to the P.O. and bought some. "I don't need a bag," I told the lady. I thought I could manage carrying two items. I got in the car and was carefully placing the egg in a safe place when my hand suddenly twitched, knocking the egg into the shift stick. Egg splattered everywhere and created a pool of yellow and clear goop at the base of the shift. Fortunately, there was a small towel in the trunk that I put over the pool so it wouldn't slop around as I drove home. I got home, cleaned up all the slime and broke my nail in the process, which usually isn't a big deal except I just painted my nails last night and they were perfect. I finally returned to the kitchen to finish my pancakes, experimenting without an egg. It wasn't until I poured the first pancake batter onto the pan that I realized the consistency was all wrong. I think it's a combination of no egg and the newly noticed fact that I had used self-rising flour. I tried making one pancake and it definitely did not work. Nobody's home and I needed to vent, so here I am. I've given up on making pancakes today and still have to figure out what to eat for breakfast two hours later than I should be eating breakfast.

I wonder what else will happen today...

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

She'd better be a girl...

I'm not totally convinced by the 85% chance that we were given, but I had to make something, so she'd better be a girl! I searched online through what were probably thousands of patterns before I chose a few to make. The first are finished. The Angel Wing Newborn Pinafore was so easy and fast to make, and I really love how it turned out. The booties weren't nearly as quick. I think I started them about 5 times. The first one I finished was too big, so I switched to a smaller hook. The size came out better, but when I made the second bootie of the pair it was a little larger and I realized I had left out a row from the first, so I made it again. After all the trial and error, they were actually really easy! Now I just have to wait another 4 months to see how cute they'll look on my baby girl.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

23 Weeks

She's approximately 11.4 inches long and weighs a little over 1 pound. She can swallow and can hear our voices, music, and other loud noises outside the womb. She's been kicking since March 25 at 10:15pm. Her kicks feel like popcorn popping on my insides. We saw her in a scan last week, but the photo wasn't as cute as the first. We saw her swallow in the scan. That was cute! We also saw her heart beat, which looked like a distorted monster's face talking.

As for me, I'm mostly tired and not very motivated to do much. I felt myself growing this afternoon and my belly button is becoming a large hole that makes my shirts indent. My boots wouldn't zip this morning, even though they fit comfortably on my foot. I think my calves have gone up at least one size. I'm still hungry for fruit and thirsty for good. Everyone stares at my belly, but fortunately not too many people try to touch it, and those that do are my friends, so it's okay. Last night, I woke up every two hours and had to force myself out of bed an hour late this morning. I've enjoyed cutting the elastic in my leggings and slits at the top of my tights so I can still wear them. I'm also on a hunt for a jacket that can button or zip over my bump. Unfortunately, England thinks they have warm springs and summers, so jackets are out of season. I guess I'll just have to take a trip to London this weekend for some real shopping!

Seven more weeks of school, seventeen more weeks of pregancy.

This is what I see when I look down...

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Snow in April??

I always thought that April SHOWERS bring May flowers, but I guess England decided to have winter in April. Isn't it usually spring in April? I'm confused because I woke up this morning, glanced out the window and everything was white!

Baby Shower

Easter 2008 in the OC

Monday, March 31, 2008

Happy Spring!

Bunny Bread! A tradition that my family's had since I was about 7 or 8 years old. Thanks to my sis's 50 email reminders, we didn't forget to make it this year. Chris has only had a few years practice, so one of his bunnies lost it's tail. However, he REALLY impressed me with his own unique design of a bunny.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Geneva - Another Day in Paradise

I went to Geneva, Switzerland a few weeks ago for an ESL conference. I learned a lot, but the best parts were the cheese fondue, chocolate, and Phil Collins! He was a guest speaker at the conference because his kids go to school at an international school and are bilingual. After he gave his speech, which I barely heard cause I was still grasping the fact that he was a real person, he played one of his songs. I've never been a HUGE Phil Collins fan, but it was super cool to hear him perform!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

19 weeks - Half Way There!

As you can see, Bean's still growing...and so am I. I never imagined my belly could have such a large bump, which has already swelled more than the picture shows from a week ago. I even have maternity jeans that I've outgrown, and to imagine continuing to expand one centimeter a week for another 5 months ...let's not think about that.

From my weekly report, I learned that Bean is about 6" and 9 oz., has teeth (still in the gums of course), is sprouting hair, and can hear me. I have to be careful of what I say now and make sure every song I sing sounds beautiful.
**Stay tuned for April 8th when we find out if Bean's a boy or girl!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Croatia - Dubrovnik

We took a trip to Croatia during our February break. Here are some pictures of just one town we visited, Dubrovnik. We also ventured to Split, Hvar, and Cavtat.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

17 Weeks Pregnant

This is how our baby, Bean, is growing...
"Your baby is now nearly 5.5 inches/ 13 centimetres long from crown to rump and weighs approximately 5 ounces/ 140 grams. Her skeleton is mostly rubbery cartilage, which will harden later. A protective substance called myelin slowly begins to wrap around the spinal cord." (
This is how I'm growing...
"You may be gaining weight rapidly at this point, even if you're not eating much. Experts say that the amount of weight you put on during pregnancy is dictated primarily by your genes, so don't necessarily blame yourself if the weight's accumulating faster than you'd like." (

I'm glad I don't have to blame myself! It is pretty strange to have my body changing so out of my control, but it is for a beautiful reason. I haven't felt a flutter, yet, which should happen soon. I'm looking forward to that. It's still hard sometimes to actually believe that Bean's growing in me. I've only had a few hormonal moments with tears and they started because I was laughing too hard at the fact that there was too much ice for my water. Talk about ridiculous. It wasn't even funny, but I couldn't stop laughing and then crying cause I was laughing so hard and then crying cause I couldn't stop. When Chris brought up the topic of ice the next day, I really had to control myself not to start laughing and crying again. I don't know what it is about ice, but I need to stop writing about it before I have another attack.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Guess who this is . . .

Baby Chong!

Due to be born on August 12th, which makes me 13 weeks and 2 days into my pregnancy. It was so amazing to finally see the little body that's growing inside. I kept having strange thoughts of my belly being empty, but it's not!

I know the ultrasound images sometimes look like blurry shades of gray, so I labeled some of the body parts. Hopefully, they will help you see the little Chong.

As of yesterday, the baby is 7.03cm long, has arms, legs, hands, feet, a spine, a brain, a stomach, and maybe some other parts that I can't think of right now.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Christmas in the UK and OC

We celebrated the beginning of the Christmas season with friends and co-workers in England and finished it with friends and family in California.

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