Thanksgiving Birthday And The HNY

We usually celebrate my sister’s birthday when we gather for Thanksgiving dinner at my parent’s place.

How time flies. 

I remember when we were only kids.  Innocent.  Free spirited.  Full of happiness.  I also remember the fights and the VHS music video we created.  My sister sang to “All Cried Out” by Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam.  She even dressed herself in one half girl and the other half a guy with a five o’clock shadow.  I’d love to see that again!!   Anyway, I created a cute card for my sister.  You can see it, here.

Not sure what my dad was doing here…talking, but what about? I don’t know.  Kylie and Logan as always are stuck together like glue and going for the cake.

Photo credits: actions by

Hmong New Year

The Colorado Hmong New Year Festival was slow again this year.  Everything reminded me of the one last year except for the Miss Hmong Colorado Competition.  That’s a whole other story though.  I left annoyed.

In the vending area, there was really nothing new offered.  This was the only clothes rack.

And these were pretty  much the hats.

The HNY in Colorado is dying.

Heritage Day

[Kida in Hmong Clothes]

Kida’s school celebrated Heritage Day last Friday.  Only a few student’s dressed up in their heritage clothes but almost everyone brought food!  I was too busy taking photos and didn’t get the chance to try all the food.  Most of the food were American though (rice crispy treats, cinnamon buns, deviled eggs, etc.).  Husband and I were not able to find clogs to purchase since the Dutch store we went to was a deli and only had clogs for display.  We did get Kida some black licorice as her Dutch food though.

Before the celebration, Kida was given a blank family tree paper to fill in.  She was excited to learn that she’s related to Brenda Song.  Really, she’s not related to Brenda in anyway, but Kida’s great grandmother’s maiden name is Xiong (spelled differently but it is the same Hmong last name and pronounced the same) which to her is close enough to being related. LOL!  She also learned that on her Dutch side, she loves her great grandmother’s first name (on her grandfather’s side), Wilhelmina, and her great grandmother’s maiden name (on her grandmother’s side), Rosenthal, and concluded that her perfect name would be Wilhelmina Rosenthal.

Anyway, Happy Thanksgiving!

Unthreading A Hmong Green Skirt

I unthreaded a Hmong Green skirt earlier today in preparation for Heritage Day at Kida’s school this Friday.  I am not good at explaining the process of unthreading but basically when the skirt was made it was tucked together tightly with thread in order to create tiny pleats.  The thread is removed only when the skirt is being worn (along with the rest of the outfit) to a special occasion, such as the Hmong New Year Festival.  In this case, the occasion is Heritage Day.  Kida was debating between wearing a Dutch costume or a Hmong costume to her school.  Since I don’t have a Dutch costume for her, her only other option was to wear a Hmong costume.  She was thrilled!  Husband and I thought it would be neat if she could wear her Hmong costume with some clogs so tomorrow we’ll try to locate some wooden clogs at a Dutch store we’ve located.

Unthreading is pretty simple but can be time consuming.  Since this skirt is small, there wasn’t much to unthread.  I’ve helped unthread a grown-up dress before and it’s no fun.

Kylie wanted to help me unthread and even cut the threads!  Initally, I told her, no, but she started crying (as if her life was over if she didn’t help) so I let her help.  I don’t know what’s so fun about unthreading but she enjoyed it.

This is what the dress looks like after it is unthreaded. I realized I should have taken a before photo of it threaded to compare.  The skirt really spreads out.  It’s a wrap skirt with ties on each side.  The modern versions of this dress isn’t wrap, instead, they either have elastic bands around the waist or a zipper.  The modern versions are also machine printed, whereas this one is hand stitched and machine sewn.  It’s very detailed and I’m sure, took a long time to finish.

The under side.

Historically, this style of skirt comes from the Green Hmong clan to differentiate themselves from the White Hmong clan (which I am), but today, any clan and anyone else can wear it.

Paint Sampling

Husband and I took a couple of weeks (maybe even more) trying to decide on what colors to paint a couple of our rooms.  We’d really like to get the living room painted and decorated.  It’s been empty for two years now.  We’re in no rush but it would be nice to get our house a bit more organized and cozied-up.

The thing with organizing is that I have a hard time deciding where things should go and how to group things.  I thought our study was messy before but now it’s even more messier and when things are messy, I can’t think.  Anyway, we moved things around in the study and then realized that we wanted the room painted before we fully organize it.  See, I don’t even know what I’m trying to say here.

This is our paint samples in the study.  The starred color is what the room will be painted in.  The red is the accent color which will go on one wall.  Husband and I can’t decide which wall…actually, we just disagree.

This is the paint samples in the living room.  The accent is a dark expresso/mocha color that we’ll use as an accent in the hallway.  The starred color is the same color shown in the study.  It looks completely different in this room.  Husband loves this color.  I like the runner up color.  It makes me happy because it has a yellowishness to it that makes me calm and happy.  We might use the runner-up color as the main color in the powder with the the red as the accent.  Husband painted the samples close to the trim because he wanted to be able to see the contrast.  🙂

Underwear For Lyrical Feet

When Kida asked to switch from tap dancing to lyrical and then asked for lyrical socks, I had no idea they would look like little boy undies.  When the front desk lady held the socks out for husband and I to look at, we couldn’t help but laugh.  The lady laughed with us.  She understood us even though she’s probably sold thousands of these.

I had asked the lady what lyrical dancing was because I always thought it was just a combination of ballet and jazz.  She told me that it was but, more so, it was dancing to the music and words of a song.  Initially, I didn’t want to put Kida in lyrical because she was already taking ballet.  Once I realized that her ballet class was about technicality and lyrical was about expression, it all made sense.  BTW, Kida loves her lyrical class and shows me every new move she learns.  It always puts a big smile on my face.

Here is a wonderul lyrical hip-hop dance I just can’t get enough of!  I watched SYTYCD Season 8 on and off and was happy that Melanie won.  She was awesome but I would have wanted Marko to win because he was fantastic at every dance.

First Big Snow

Today is the first big snow this year fall.  I think this one will stick around for awhile.  The previous snows melted way too quick.  Both girls’s schools were canceled this morning so they sat around watching TV and ate their favorite soups while husband cleared the driveway.  He was beyond excited to finally see thick fluffy snow.  I’ve had to listen to him complain the last few months on how it better snow hard so that he can finally put his snow blower to use.

I went outside for a bit to get a photo of husband (above) then had some pumpkin bread made last night with the help of my girls and coffee while I finished up on my November desktop I started yesterday.

Credits and the story behind this layout can be found here.

BTW, husband took the girls to their dentist’s office to drop off their candies from trick-or-treating (mentioned here) and they each got $5!  The girls kept less than 25% of their candies and donated everything else.  I’m very proud of them!

Girls Night

Mid October, my sister (left in photo — I’m next to her) had a girls night at her place.  She invited a few of her friends and then the sisters (my other sister didn’t show up until later).  It’s been awhile since we’ve done anything with just girls.  It was a lot of fun even though it was only for a few hours since we all had to be somewhere early the next morning.  We had Asian food as our theme and were supposed to watch a movie but ended up watching the Twilight Zone.  I loved the home made kimchi made by my sister’s friend and the red wine from her boyfriend’s wine collection.

We’re thinking of inviting the guys next time to help eat the food. 🙂

Photos courtesy of my sister.