Sunday, February 22, 2015

Chinsee New Year Potluck at CSL2A

Yesterday we had a Chinese New Year potluck event at my Chinese class, CSL2A.  There were only 12 of us yesterday in class.  Some of the kids were absent. 

Class was as usual before the second recess.  After the second recess, we did a dragon craft which I colored and cut out and glued the head and the body together.  The volunteer parents (including my mom) helped to make a lantern for each of us. 

We had our potluck food after the craft. My mom made some sheep cookies. Everyone loved it! I like it a lot too. They're very cute. Miss Lee took some leftover cookies for her friends too.

We had the whole class took a picture with our dragon craft!!

Before we left the school, we saw some Chinese New Year decoration at the lobby. Mom asked me to take a picture with my Zodiac sign - the dog.

Here is a lucky god with a penny craft my mom received from Miss Lee in exchanged for her sheep cookies.

Monday, February 02, 2015

Mustang Pride Award

Sometimes towards the end of last month (January), I received the Mustang Price Award for demonstrating high excellence in ensuring Safety First.

Christmas Craft at Chinese School

Backdated post 12/13/2014 .

For the last day at Chinese School, we celebrated Christmas with potluck and also a craft.  Teacher Lee taught us how to fold a Santa Claus.  Don't ask me to fold another one now because I already forgot all the steps. 

We also took a class picture with Teacher Lee.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Piano Theory?

When my mom tells me to do piano theory, I would tell her, "How can I make a prediction for this piano theory?"

She would be confused. Then I would tell her, "That's what 'theory' means. Check the dictionary. Theory means an idea or opinion based on some facts or evidence but not proved, to make a prediction."

Then she would say to me, "Theory has many meanings. What you said is one of the meanings. The other meaning is 'the rules or principles of an art or a science rather than its practice'."

Friday, January 16, 2015

ROPES Prize Cart

It was Friday and Mom was at school during lunch time.  The ROPES prize cart was out at the lobby. She took several pictures of the prize cart to see what it has for the kids to pick. She always ask me if I get picked for ROPES Friday, I should get a pencil rather than other useless knick-knacks.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Not Too Smart

Mom's note:

Brandon did something not too smart this afternoon.  And I want to put it down so this will remind him in future. 

He was supposed to finished his homework - language & art and math plus a few sentences to report about a book he read.  He was supposed to have a playdate this afternoon with a friend.  But I told him that he has to finish his homework to be able to go.  He finished his language and art and then math ... whilst doing them while standing up.  He also wrote the report out on his SURF log. 

I was looking for Fact 5 math homework for him to do.  Then I saw him busy erasing his SURF log.  Next I saw he wanted to staple a homework pass which he received before the winter break from his teacher.  O_O

I took the homework pass away.  I told him, he could have saved the homework pass for another homework and NOT erasing his finished homework to attach a homework pass.  That is not a smart move.  He got angry and threw a fit.  He wanted to break the drawer, throwing things on the floor and want to try make me more angry.  That's when I crumbled his homework pass.  Of course, he got more angry.

I told him in a calm voice that what he did was wasting his time - to do the homework and then erasing it.  Isn't it better just to use it for a another homework instead?  Why can't he think this way?  I am very disappointed in him.  I also had to call the friend to cancel his playdate because he was rude.  This is a hard boy to teach.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

My Dear Yeh-Yeh

My yeh-yeh (paternal grandfather) passed away peacefully in his home at Gardena last night around 11:45pm. The last time I saw him when he was still able to walk and talk was on December 28th, 2014.  To me, he looked as healthy as he was me although he was having a slight difficulty in walking. 

I didn't cry when Mom told me this morning after I woke up.  I will stay strong.  I don't want to let people see me cry, that's what I told my mom.

Mom's note:

My father-in-law passed away at his own home last night.  Mother-in-law, my husband and his sister were there with him.  We actually visited them yesterday afternoon, after Brandon's Chinese school.  When we arrived, all we saw was father-in-law sleeping and snoring on the bed.  There was an oxygen pump attached to him to help him breath.  But he was already in deep sleep due to the pain medication that was given to him. 

We usually visit my in-laws in Gardena on the weekend.  Last Saturday, Brandon woke up continuously coughing, so we told them that we would not be going up, didn't want passing the cough germ to FIL.  He had been weak due to anemic issue and his lumbar vertebrae fractured/collapsed.  Last I heard was his kidneys were failing and the doctor had yet to find out the problem my FIL was having. 

On the Sunday morning (1/4/15), SIL called and told us that MIL wanted to take FIL to the emergency.  She said FIL was not eating, no appetite and he was tired and restless, no energy.  He probably was in pain too.  Since Brandon was still coughing, we weren't allowed to visit the hospital. 

On Monday, they found out there was fluid in his lung and he was given medication to drain the fluid.  He also had swelling on his feet but after he was on the medication, the swelling reduced.  My husband was told to visit FIL after work and he went up to Torrance Memorial. 

While at the hospital, there was many tests to find out what was going on with FIL's condition.  Initially, the doctor said FIL may have bone cancer because they saw clouding/shadow on his chest x-ray.  MIL and SIL has been staying at the hospital overnight to accompany FIL. 

On Tuesday early morning, Brandon woke up with cough that woke me up too.  So both of us didn't sleep well that morning.  On top of that I had to go to DMV at Laguna Hills to renew my driving license.  My husband stayed home with Brandon.  Brandon skipped school because of his cough.  After I came home, we went to J-Zhou for brunch and packed two 'loh mai kai' and one BBQ steamed bun.

That morning, SIL asked if my husband could stand in for her for Wednesday night as she needed to return to office to pass her work to other co-workers.  Also on Tuesday, FIL was sent to do a biopsy on a lump near his neck.  SIL said it took a long time before the medical technician could find the lump with the ultrasound.  They were able to safely took out some cells for biopsy.  The result would take a few days.  My husband told me later that FIL finished the dimsum he had brought to the hospital.  He had better appetite and looked more alert.  When the nurse asked if he needed any pain medication, FIL said he had no pain issue.

The doctor already suspected Multiple Myeloma (the biopsy result later confirmed it), a form of plasma cell cancers that had aggressively spread all over FIL's body.  During the CT scan, they found FIL's abdomen has several abnormal growth as well as one behind his heart.  They also found his bones had a lot of fractures.  Even his skeleton had many fractures.  We were speechless when we heard it.  We didn't know FIL was in this worse condition.  Coincidently, the symptoms of Multiple Myeloma is similar to any old age symptoms - anemia, back pain, renal (kidney) problem and calcium loss (osteoporosis).

During the month of December, after FIL and MIL returned from Macao, FIL has been going to the doctor every week to find out what was going on with his body.  He was weak and had little appetite, but the doctor only said he had anemia and osteoporosis.  He was sent to different doctors to be examined and blood was drawn for tests, every week! 

He already has anemia and yet the medical professional had to draw more blood from him.  That I think took a toll on his body as his body was not able to produce blood fast enough.  When he was sent to see the kidney doctor, they found out that his kidney function had deteriorate to only 25%.  If it gets lower, he would need dialysis.  After that result, more blood work was needed.  I believe all these tests and emotional anticipation on the result took a toll on FIL's body.

When my husband was staying overnight at the hospital, he Facetime with us.  We were able to see FIL and he did look more alert.  I remember the words he told us over Facetime.  He said this time he lost the battle (in Cantonese - 'Yeh yeh ta bai jeung').  As he was tired, he wanted to sleep and I told him to take a good rest.  Not knowing, that was the last conversation we were going to have.

On Thursday, the doctor at Torrance Memorial told the family he has the confidence to treat FIL's Multiple Myeloma with 80-90% success with chemotherapy (a pill and shot).  But as FIL's kidneys were failing, he might need dialysis after.  Also he had a lot of fractures on his bones, his quality of life might not be good anymore.

After a long consideration, the family decided to opt-out of the treatment.  FIL started to have pain over the bones.  He was giving pain medication and since then, he has been sleeping.  The doctor discharged him from the hospital with hospice care at home.  FIL was sent home on Friday morning.  They rented a hospital bed and set it up in the family room, near the kitchen.  FIL was transferred home sleeping.

On Saturday, after Brandon's Chinese school, we drove up to Gardena.  There were many relatives dropping by on and off.  FIL looked peacefully sound asleep.  SIL said she received the duty to administer the morphine for FIL every hour.  She also said that morning, FIL was mumbling in his sleep and shaking his arms around.  When the hospice nurse came by that morning, he said to have people come to see FIL for the last time as he didn't have much time left, may be two or three days. 

We left Gardena around 7 something in the evening.  It was raining through out our drive back home.  Back in Irvine, I was still texting SIL back and forth.  After a long (may be 40 mins?) Whatsapp, I told her to go to sleep.  She said she needed to give FIL his morphine and that's why she needed to stay awake and she also wanted to spend some quiet time with FIL.  I texted her "Good nite."  And added another text below it saying, "Please tell Daddy that we all will miss him dearly but it is OK to let go."  I felt so sad until tears came rushing down my eyes; I didn't press the send button.  About an hour later, I received a phone call from my husband that FIL has passed on. 

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Went to the Doctor

I was coughing really bad since Saturday morning so finally my mom took me to the doctor.  I missed Chinese School and also missed yesterday at my regular school.  And today I had to skip school to go see the doctor. 

The doctor's office has a great view of Irvine

Waiting for my doctor

Oh oh ... I am about to cough!

Doctor Singh saw me  and she said everything is fine.  My lungs sounded OK.  I don't have ear infection.  So she told my mom to give me Mucinex for children instead of Tylenol.