Sisters at Play

I love how close the girls are with each other. They play together all day long. Of course they bicker and want each others toys, but for the most part they get along great!

I love these pictures of them. They both just crawled into this inflatable car pit that I now use to store the stuffed animals and started showing me some of their favorites. I could just hear a bunch of giggles and happy screams.

Adults can learn a lot from children...I certainly have! We don't need big cars and fancy things to be happy. Just surround yourself with good people and smiles and you'll be rich in life and happiness. This is what I've learned since becoming a parent. The girls don't care if we eat fancy steak or drive an Escalade. They could eat Cheerios all day (not that I let them!!) and walk everywhere and still be happy. They are amazing.


Related Tags: Family, Happiness

Holiday Weekend

Our 4th of July wasn't too eventful. We still don't know many people over in this area so we haven't had any big get togethers like we would probably have done had we been back at home.

Instead we cooked some burgers and dogs at home for lunch. My husband makes GREAT burgers! He cooked some onions right into them and it was way too yummy.

Later in the day we had planned to head out to the fireworks show at the big local park. When we got there there were SO many cars already. We couldn't find a spot. Events also seem to bring out the crazy in people so, sadly, we gave up on the fireworks and went to go play at another smaller park.

There was no one else there and we had a lot of fun running around and having the park to ourselves. It was great. Kylie loves to swing and Alana is becoming more daring on the playground. She used to want to hold my hand when climbing up, but she wants to be a big girl now!

It may not have been the festive 4th of July that I would have wanted, but we still had a great day spending time together as a family. That is what really matters.


Related Tags: July 4th, Playground, Fireworks, Swings

Walks and Dandelions

Apartment living is limiting..."our" yard is shared by the other tenants and the parking lot is also right next to it. Therefore, we do not play outside much at this point int time. That makes me sad because when I was a child I was outside nearly ALL day running around and having fun! I'd like my girls to do the same.

My solution? Taking walks! On nice sunny days the girls and I go out for a nice walk around the neighborhood. It isn't as much outside time as I'd like, but the walk does us all some good.

Alana loves the walks because she can pick dandelions. She just loves dandelions. I love to just watch her run up to them and smell then with that big smile on her face. Kids are so sweet and innocent. Most people look at dandelions as a bother and just a weed, but kids can see the beauty of a common flower.


Related Tags: Dandelions, Walks

Summer Fun Time!!

Now that the weather is getting nicer it is time for some summer activities!

We went to our first baseball game as a family and it was a lot of fun! It is a local team where collage kids from other states come and play for the summer. We got there early so we could find some good seats and it was good that we did! A woman who worked there came up to us and asked if we'd like a free upgrade to the best seats in the house. Of course we took the offer and instead of being on the side we were right behind home plate!

About halfway through the game a little girl about 5 or 6 came up to Alana to see if they could play together. The seats behind us were empty so the little girl's mom and I set the kids up there with some coloring books and goldfish crackers. Alana had a LOT of fun playing with the older kid. She just kept mimicing her dancing and whatnot. It was cute.

There were fireworks afterwords but Kylie started fussing too much for us to see them. I would have LOVED to get some nice pictures of that! Maybe next time. We are planning on going to at least 1 game a month.


Related Tags: Baseball, Family fun, fireworks

First pregnancy appointment

This morning I had my first appointment for this pregnancy. It was pretty routine, nothing special. I am seeing a midwife for the first time! I'm excited about that. I hate to say it, but my previous obgyn office was not that great. I loved my Dr. there, but not much else. I talked a bit to the nurse about my care over there and she assured me things would not be the same at this office. This place seems great! I'm sure I'll be in great hands.

My next appointment may have an ultrasound. I'm very excited to find out my exact due date. The current one is January 4th, but it could be off.

In other news, we just recently bought a fish tank and some fish! Alana loves fish so we figured it was time to have some in the house. She goes up to the tank and says "FISH IN THE OCEAN!" When she sees the little goldfish in there. It is very cute! Jimmy wants to get a little crab tank someday, but I'm not too sure about that one! Haha. I've never owned crabs so I'm worried that I won't know how to care for them. Oh well...that isn't anything the good old internet can't fix, right? ;)


Related Tags: Pregnancy, Ultrasound, Fish

Mortgage Preapproval: Waiting game for the Chungs

After day after day of processing, scanning, signing, and preparing paperwork with our Mortgage Consultant, we have recently finished the initial Home Mortgage Pre-approval paperwork. It was truly difficult of coming home after a long day of work to process paperwork that seemed like doing more work! Unfortunately our quest for a mortgage approval is not done yet.

Now the next step wait!

I will admit that Jimmy Chung is not a patience person (yes, I just spoke from a third person perspective...). I hate waiting for food, pictures to load, games to load, and of course the most recent "hate" of my life, the waiting period for a Home Mortgage Pre-approval Certificate.

If everything goes well, the pre-approval certificate should arrive around the first week of June based on the judgement from our Mortgage Consultant. If the certificate does arrive on the estimated time, me and Sarah will have about 4 months to find and close on a house before the certificate expires.

Our Wells Fargo Mortgage Consultant, Steven has been awesome in helping us. He explained how the pre-approval process works and walked us through on what we had to do.

I hope we get the pre-approval certificate because it truly will change the life of the Chung family altogether (Jimmy, Sarah, Alana, Kylie, and Baby #3!

I will provide more updates as they come! : )

- Jimmy Chung

Related Tags: Home Mortgage, Wells Fargo, Real Estate,

Taking some time to bond

Yesterday we had a wonderful day. Jimmy decided that it was a good day for Dim Sum so we headed out to the Chinese Buffet. The food was pretty yummy and the girls had a lot of fun at the restaurant. Kylie tried ice cream for the first time and she LOVED it!

After we finished lunch we decided to go to the park to fly a kite! We had a little field to ourselves to run around. Alana went WILD for the kite! She just kept running and running like a mad woman all around the field. I put Kylie down in the grass so she could play, but she decided that she didn't like the way grass feels on her legs.

After we finished with the kite we went to one of the park's playgrounds. This park has at least 4 playgrounds! I couldn't believe how many there were. We found one that was geared more toward younger kids and it was just perfect for Alana. She played very well by herself. She usually wants me to be standing right next to her and sliding down the slide with her, but on this one she was climbing up on her own and sliding down on her own. I was very proud of her.

My only regret for the day was that I forgot my camera at home :(


Related Tags: Park, Kites, Playground, Dim Sum

Walking wonderland

Kylie started walking on May 2nd. At first she was just taking a few steps at a time and she would fall over. She didn't seem too interested in walking and would only try it once or twice a day.

Those days are over!! Kylie is walking all over the place now! There is just something absolutely adorable about watching a young toddler walk around. She's still a little awkward looking when she walks and that makes even that much cuter.

So many people have said to me that life gets so much harder once kids learn to walk and I haven't found that to be true! I love that she can walk around now. It makes so many things easier! For example, it is much easier to get her dressed now that she'll stand for me.

I've been trying to record a video of her walking but she just hasn't cooperated so far. I'll keep trying and once I get a good one I'll be sure to share it!


Related Tags: Toddler, Walking, Milestones

3 by 23?

So there I was, in the bathroom waiting for the results of the pregnancy test I had just taken. I looked down and my eyes widened. There they were...

2 pink lines! Baby here you come!

I couldn't believe that we would be having our third child...3 kids by 23 years old! The diapers, the food, clothes, and all other expenses that a baby brings didn't even enter my head at that moment. All I could do was smile as I looked down at that test. The test that changed my life yet again.

Having 2 children is difficult at times. Double the diapers and double the whining can grate on anybody's nerves. It is hard to imagine adding another into the mix, but I know we can handle it. I worry about it so much when I'm pregnant. I always wonder how I'll handle it, but once that baby comes it is almost as if instinct takes over.

Sure, 3 by 23 may be tough, but we can do it! It'll be a busy house, but I kind of like the hustle and bustle of a family moving about. We are so excited to have another baby to love.


Related Tags: Pregnancy Test, Pregnant, 3 kids

Real Estate: Buying A House by December 1st, 2009?

The new "First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit" is looking pretty good right now. If you don't know about it, here is the main focus on it:

- If you purchase a house after January 1st, 2009, but before December 1st 2009 as a first time home buyer, you can qualify to receive a nonrefundable tax credit of up to $8,000.

Sounds pretty sweet right?

Well to me and my wife, Sarah, it sure does! We are currently aiming to purchase a house by December 1st, 2009 despite the known obstacles ahead of us (ex: saving for a down payment and real estate related costs).

Me and my wife have been constantly talking about purchasing a house ever since we were dating as boyfriend and girlfriend. We knew we were committed to each other, but being able to commit to paying for a house was a different story.

It's not like we do not want to commit, but the preparation and the self-assurance in paying for a mortgage is what we need.

Here are my Top 10 Home Purchasing Questions that I must answer before committing:

  1. What are my current monthly expenses? (ex: Credit Cards, Student Loans, Utilities, and etc).
  2. Do I have any future expenses beyond my monthly bills coming around the corner? (ex: Bill Me Later, No Payments until 12 months, and etc).
  3. How much do I have saved?
  4. Am I aiming too high in a desired house?
  5. Next to future mortgage payments, will I be able to save on the side? (ex: College funds, cars, retirement, and etc).
  6. Will I have any extra savings after the down payment and other real estate related fees?
  7. Do I have enough money to pay off the first several months of mortage payments?
  8. Do I have back up money in case of issues with a newly purchased house? (ex: broken heater, electricity issues, plumbing defects, and etc).
  9. As a parent, how are the schools in the local area?
  10. Last but not least, location! Is the location a perfect fit for my family?

So, now is the final countdown to December 1st, 2009 if we want to take advantage of the tax credit.

Please wish me and Sarah some good old luck! We will provide updates as our journey to purchasing our first home begins.

Thanks for following!

- Jimmy Chung

Related Tags: Real Estate, Homes, First Time Home Buyer, FHA, Mortgage

Reflecting on a year with Kylie

On May 5th my little girl turned 1 year old. My Kylie.

Let me tell you a little bit about her…

Kylie is strong willed. Ever since she was 1 day old she knew what she wanted and she wanted it 5 minutes ago.

Kylie is lovable. She has this wonderful smile that could melt any heart. She is just a caring and sweet girl.

Kylie is stubborn. She does not care if all the toys don’t fit into the box, she will make them. Or at least try for half an hour.

Kylie is a comedian. She will do almost anything for a laugh. Blow raspberries, scream, babble, anything! She loves to make others smile.

Oh there is so much more than that but those are some of my favorite traits in Kylie. She is an amazing person. I remember when Kylie first rolled over, sat up, and crawled. She may be a little sister but every one of these events was just as special as if she had been the first born. No matter how many children you have, there is just something special about watching your child explore and learn about the world.

Now, it is hard on many Moms to see their children grow older and I am no different. Bringing her home from the hospital feels like it happened ages ago. She was 9lbs 5 oz with a head full of black hair and huge cheeks. Sometimes it is hard to remember a time when I didn’t wake up to her beautiful smile. This past year has been a joy. There were tough times but they never seem to be remembered in the long run. It’s the laughter and the hugs that we cherish.

I must say that it has been a privilege to raise my Kylie.


Related Tags: First Birthday, Growing up, Proud mom