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by Lori Ann

Spring Festival Strawberries

chocolate-covered strawberries… which holiday?

February brought both 春节 (pronounced “choon-gee-eh,” meaning Spring Festival i.e. Chinese New Year’s) and Valentine’s Day, two holidays that in our house mean lots of food! Can you guess which foods were for which? You may be surprised!

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by Lori Ann

Our family does not “do” Santa.

Holiday decorations

That’s kind of a strange phrase, and I know it means different things to different people, but here’s my take on the truth about Santa: he was (probably) a real person, and he followed Jesus (we think), but he is no longer alive on earth, and so he does not pass out gifts today.

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by Lori Ann

Welcome to the December Carnival of Natural Parenting: Let’s Talk Traditions

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

Christmas Sheep

I was challenged by the Carnival of Natural Parenting Question this month: “From holidays to birthdays, long weekends to family vacations, what has your family done to make special occasions memorable?” As Mama to a young new family, I’m very conscious of the habits, routines, and traditions we’re establishing every day as well as each holiday.

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by Lori Ann


Saruskabeth’s Thanksgiving post inspired me to share a little from our own week:

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^_^ Saruskabeth^_^

Every Thanksgiving for the last few years has been the same. Stressing about travel plans, mad rushes to the grocery store, adorably matching outfits getting stained and wrinkled, the smell of a feast and chattering of family, and FOOTBALL!

This year, when we began to iron out holiday plans, something occurred to me. Something that shocked me, almost angered me. Read the rest of this entry »

Holiday decorations
Creative Commons License photo credit: bunnygoth

To Santa or not to Santa? That’s our December “A Tale of Two Mamas” question. But what else can we answer for you about Christmas traditions in our homes in America and China? Respond with whatever you’re interested in us sharing about!

Little Red Riding Hood Baby

Halloween in China?… It doesn’t exist.

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by LoriAnn

I had a great birthday! I got a library’s worth of books, some specifically for my birthday and others in well-timed care packages. Some are print, some eBooks, and some audio. I’m enjoying them all! More details on the MamaWit Bookshelf and at the end of this post.

Also for my birthday, we enjoyed a new tradition of baking my cake together the night before. My birthday pick was the Applesauce Spice Bread in a round cake pan, sprinkled with powdered sugar! Baba cooked lunch & dinner, my favorite: Thai food! (I’ll let you know if he posts the recipe online… he’s working on writing a blog about life in China!) And, Tigger napped well several times, so I got lots of chances to enjoy a bunch of magazines sent by my aunt plus my new books: in paper, via my iPod speakers, and on the iPod touch Kindle reader!

I guess I won’t need any new books for awhile… oh, but wait, I just used my birthday money to order two more!… and then I downloaded 6 limited-time freebies onto my Kindle for Mac reader… well, what can I say; I love to read!

Click to read more if you’d like to see the (huge!!) list of books I got; one’s available for free on any Kindle reader! There’s also a note at the end about joining me for a group book study online, for any Mamas who are interested in growing in their Motherhood.

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… to me!


Care packages are always so exciting and encouraging for us, but we’ve never gotten one so soon after arriving back in China before! It was a great reminder that the folks back home aren’t going to forget us. And a fun present to come in the mail just two days before my birthday!

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Happy Fathers' Day!We’d only been back in China a few days when Baba’s first Fathers’ Day (Babas’ Day?) came around. His gift hadn’t arrived in the mail yet (it did today!) but I wanted to do something special for him. In the U.S., I bought a silicone mini-bundt-cake pan at Goodwill, so I looked up a chocolate cake recipe and settled on the one below, originally from Recipezaar (I just halved all the ingredients; it took the same amount of time to bake). I wish I’d taken pictures, but we ate it too quickly, so you’ll have to settle for Tigger handing Baba his present.

Easy Chocolate Cake, no eggs or butter


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