Friday, April 29, 2011

Hensley Ruth: Two Months

Well, hey there little nugget! You are two months old. So, how's it been? Do you like us okay? Is the temperature good in your room? How about the lighting? I know you still need curtains, but don't you love the bedding made by your Gramma Debby? For real though. You smile and coo, eat and poo. I'd say things are going well for you. (I love to rhyme.) Yesterday you had a check up at the doc. Things are mostly good. You are definitely eating enough because you weigh 12 lbs (that's the 90th percentile for kids your age!) When your brother came home (age 2 and 4 months) he was in the negative 5th percentile on U.S. charts at a whopping 19 lbs.  Pretty sure you are going to pass that mark with flying colors.

Your doctor is taking precautionary measures on your hip. She says that your cartilage is not growing fast enough on one side (which could cause hip displacement down the road). We will get it checked out at Children's Mercy on Tuesday, but at this point it should be an easy fix with some "sleep shorts" to get things on track. We pray that it can be corrected with minimal intervention.

On to the good stuff...your two month birthday present to mommy was SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT! Thanks Hensley! What a big girl you are! You slept from 11pm to 6:30am. And so did I! Horray. Maybe that can happen again. (Some may be asking if I put a spell on you...well no. I did, however, turn off the monitor. That means that I hear your cries (as our bedrooms are close) but not every grunt. We also do a lot of suggestions from On Becoming Babywise, and they seem to work for us!)

We have spent more hours outside than in today. On our second floor deck. It's great. I even brought your playmat out that we are borrowing from Mrs. Michelle.  You love that thing. And tonight mommy is having a Mom's Night Out with 19 awesome ladies! Double horray!

Tegegne: Conversations

Tegegne and I are in our bedroom and he asks:
T: "Mooom, what are you doing?" (He was looking right at me and could clearly see what I was doing.)
M: "Mmmm, flossing my teeth."
T: "Oookaaay, remember you need to do that in the bathroom."
M: "Your right. Thanks."
(I guess it is sometimes necessary to practice what I preach.)

Driving home from visiting a friend. I was singing my heart out, proudly making up a "Counting Backwards" song for some educational car time!
T: "Mooom, would you please stop singing...I'm trying to sleep."
M: A bit embarassed I replied, "Okay, sorry. Goodnight." 

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Happy Birthday: Grampa Jones

Nana & Grampa Jones

Happy Birthday, to you!
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday, Dear Grampaaaa,
Happy Birthday to youuuuuuuuuuu.

We love you and can't wait to come play at the cabin!


Tegegne & Hensley

Monday, April 25, 2011

Parenthood: Sweet Moment

Tonight Michael and I would agree we had a sweet time with our kids. After some yummy potato soup we rocked you both. Ababayeh held you, Tegegne...yes, he had to ask you to be calm and relax. Finally you settled into his lap. I was rocking your sister. The four of us sitting in the living room listening to our new lovely record from a band called The Civil Wars. Tegegne, you and I kept catching glances. I'd wink at you, which made you smile bigger than ever and of course my heart melted. Then your dad and I exchanged a wink. It was a nice quiet evening as a family. 

Day to Day: Easter + Mama's Sick

This mama spent most of Easter sick with the flu. Before I got sick, I did get to enjoy an amazing Easter service at our church. Phew, I love worshiping the Lord in that place and I most definitely had an amazing morning being impacted by what Jesus did for us. What a glorious outcome from such a tragic event. The love of the Father is overwhelming at times. I also got to hold you, Hensley Ruth while I worshiped the Lord with all of my heart.  What a cherished moment for me. You kept me warm and cozy on the cool Easter morning. Thanks, Little One. 

It's Monday and your dear 'ol dad stayed home to care for you two kiddos so I can rest and get rid of this flu bug. 

So I've been reading the book Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo, and it is definitely thought provoking. Easy read, too. It's the story of a little boy's trip to Heaven and back. His father writes the book and often gives reference to biblical scripture that lines up with what his son recalls from his trip to heaven. I cannot stop thinking about it.  


Monday, April 18, 2011

Tegegne: What's Up


hello there.
my name is gunyea.
i stand at 36" and weigh in at 30 pounds.
i dress myself.
most of my days are spent on all fours imitating my large k9.
i love my belt. 
i love my sister.  
i love reciting my address.
i can't wait for my first soccer practice this saturday. you see, i was born in ethiopia and my awesome city, kansas city, has an ethiopian kids soccer team...and i'm gonna play on it. 
my new thing is wearing different colored socks because this book i read says "it's okay to wear glasses, it's okay to be short, it's okay to be tall, and it's okay to wear different colored socks."
my knock knock joke goes like this: 
"knock, knock."
"who's there?"
"banana who?"
"banana Owen!"
then i crack up laughing and hope that i've made you laugh too. my parents find my jokes quite hilarious.
right now i'm sleeping in my little-man cave that my mom made for me. its under the stairs, and it can get so dark that i go into hibernation for about half of the day. my mom loves my new man cave.


Family: Big Sky Ranch

Hey Ababayeh, I'll just be over here doing somersaults until you get the kite untangled.
As the Good Lord knows, I cannot sit still long enough to help you!

Cutest little grain bin that Gramma Debby is going to make into a play place
with a slide coming out of the side!

Grandma Ileen, your Great Grandma. Oh, the stories and memories I have with her. I cannot
wait to share them with you.  I look forward to you making memories with her, too!
(Making mud pies & forts in the woods, reading Heidi 100 times, spa days with Lindsey,
stories about her growing up in Denver with 'ol Lady Roth, and other scary stories
about the lady with the golden arm, baking, and more baking...mostly licking the spoon,
trips with the Old Car Club. She would even put my towel in the dryer so it would be warm
when I got out of the bath! I spent LOTS of time with my Grandma & Grandpa!)

Great Grandpa Orville could have held you for hours...but Grandpa Ben stole you back!
Our Little Stinker with Gramma Debby
Quick photo with Mom before getting back to time with the Boys.

Grandpa Ben had you smiling like crazy!
Here's proof to our relaxing retreat to Big Sky Ranch last weekend. These weekends allow us to kick back and catch a breath. It is so nice. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Day to Day: Kids & Neighbors

Scout Photo. Nick Welch. 

A Poem to Our Kids

You turn our gray skies blue.
You give us an excuse to go to the zoo.
Oh, what would we do without you.

Life is exciting, life is new.
You'll soon be off to college and we'll want to come too.
Oh, what would we do without you.

So one thing that made this mama's day so great--besides loving you two in spite of a couple of stinky diapers and some 3 year old let's-humiliate-mom-in-public time--was time spent with neighbors, one old, one new. Old neighbor Phil (better known as Philvis, the professional Elvis impersonator) took us to lunch and the Dollar Tree. You see, Phil used to spoil Owen with gourmet dog treats, then you (Tegegne) came along and he'd bring you toys. And today, of course we pick him up and he's got treats for Owen and both of you! 

When we moved to our new neighborhood we knew we would miss Phil a ton. Then we met Louise. I said that like we replaced Phil. We did not replace Phil, but I sure am enjoying Little 'ol Louise! She also shows up at our door with gifts of a different sort! Most of them family heirlooms...tea towels that her mother embroidered for her wedding gift, an embroidered wall hanging of the Lord's Prayer, the most beautiful tablecloth and napkins that I may use for Easter. She keeps bringing bags of Star Wars toys for Tegegne from her sons collection! This afternoon she told me the story of her handsome Italian husband, how they met, and funny details of their Italian wedding in the 1930's. ("Oh you know those cobblestone streets...well, a layer of our wedding cake fell off...and we had lots of people to feed." "People say my husband looked like Elvis...") I cannot wait for more afternoons with Louise! 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New House: Projects + Kids: Day to Day

So Tegegne, you still call this our new house but it's not so new anymore. You often ask to see our old house when we are out running errands. Well, we will on Thursday because Phil (yes, Philvis) is taking you, Hensley and I out to lunch! It will be so fun to catch up with one of our favorite old neighbors.

On another note, I came up with a lovely house project for Ababayeh this weekend. Do you think he'll mind? It's just demolition of a few walls (which I realize involves clean-up and some slight repair!) Well, I felt like a genius when I realized we could do see in the process of looking up fence inspiration I realized that it would be great to have a screened in porch. My demo project doesn't exactly get us a screened in porch yet. We enter the house through our back breezeway which is about 5' x 5' of space, just off the kitchen. Adjacent to that is a back room (7'x10') just off of our family room with a large closet. We hardly utilize that space because it's inconvenient to get to. The two spaces are divided by two walls, that if we take out will make us one large back porch with three windows and our back door! Hooray! I can hardly wait! It will be a great space for our two puppy dogs to play, Owen and Tegegne).

And for our day-to-day Tuesday report:

To the smaller, more human, of the two puppies (uhem, Tegegne). You are often choosing to go potty in your pants this week. I heard that this could happen when a new baby enters the world, and it really is happening with us. I hope it's a short-lived phase. I feel like it was eons ago when you were potty trained and its so surprising to see you do "the walk" again. Good thing I'm already in clean-up mode with these cloth diapers. On a happier note, you leave school singing lots of new little songs with actions, and you are quite a sweet fellow. Today out of nowhere you said, "You are pretty, Mommy." I replied with a "Thanks Tegegne!" And you followed with, "Noooo say, thanks son." Your favorite thing right now is your new play phone with the recording from Grandpa Ben.

And to the smallest little peanut (not yet in puppy mode). You are smiling alot, and are finding your little hands. You are super strong, holding your head up often and standing for split seconds while being held. I think you'll crawl early. Your favorite thing, or two things are most likely attached to Mommy and are what feed you!

Just realized that both kids are asleep and I should go make an iced chai latte to help me kick back and relax a bit!

Oh Ababayeh, we are excited to play soccer with you when you get home. And guess what, Taryn just asked if we had plans for dinner. I said no. She said Micah is cooking tonight and they'd love for us to join them! Awesome, huh?

(images from Lake Flato, Dwell, and Remodelista)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Not tonight....rats

Family -

Tonight I am a busy guy, and I am not very excited about this at all.  I need to go to the dentist after school, for 2 hrs...ugh.  Yea, really lame. Then, I have a board meeting to attend, and speak on some topics that may be rather uneasy.

I just want to come home after teaching.  I just want to play with you little Mr. Dena.  There are lots of options: puppy, cars, kite, catch, kick back, etc.  Ms. Ruth, you don't do much yet other than hold your head up, and then headbutt anything in your way.  I do love trying to take credit for your little smiles after your mother makes you fat and happy.  I want to give mom a break, and be tackled and yelled for.  Tonight, well, that won't happen.

Just know that I want to play, but I can't.  Tomorrow, Tegegne, maybe we'll fly a kite again. And for you ms. little cute as a button, I'll hold you as long as possible.  Those are great endings to the day.

Lovely wife, I'll see you for sure.  We'll catch up with the day's happenings, and maybe we'll watch a show.  I am sure you'll be tired, maybe I'll bring home a special treat for us to enjoy.  That is a good ending to a long day. 

I'm working hard for you all, and thinking of you often.  I'm starting to see what my dad said when he told me that "this is what life is all about..."

TDJ, go get sweaty and dirty.  HRJ, go get cozy and nap.  KLJ, enjoy the life you give to our family.

- The Dad

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Family: Photoshoot

Scout Photo.
The best thing about the shot on the stairs, is that we made no real effort to get Owen (the big yellow lab) in the photo. He just wanted to represent himself as a part of the family, I guess.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dad Stuff: His Spring Look

So as someone anonymously commented in the last post, I left out your dear old dad and didn't find anything for his wardrobe. Yes, I can surf the net easily for kids clothes and of course for myself but I usually don't get around to clothing for your dad. 

So, these are for you Michael. I'm sure you would love some new cycling jerseys and let's just dream that we can buy you a new bike with all the bells and whistles like Thor Hushovd's below. 

P.S. I think you look hot in that new green Izod cardigan that we picked up at Katie's booth (3rd floor, middle isle, north side...she's got great vintage clothes at bargain prices!) in the River Market Antique mall.  


Your Wife

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Kid Stuff: Clothing Lookbooks

A cute look for Hensley...a little big but conceptually cute.

For you, Tegegne.
And more for Hensley. (If I buy these shoes for your brother, you could wear them in a few years!)


I found some cuteness over at caramelbaby&child via emmas designblogg. I love these looks.  I'm so glad places like caramelbaby&child and zara have "lookbooks," because buying all of these clothes is not an option, and looking does not cost a thing!

As Tegegne would say, "Hensley Wooth, you are so cute." (He also calls you Sweetie.) It should be fun to shop with you someday. For now, would you please make it a little easier to put your clothes on? There is no trying things on and off, as if you were a baby doll. I better be quite sure of your outfit before the grand effort to get each little limb in the correct sleeve or pant leg. 

And a "look" for mom while I'm at it.  (from Zara)
These too! (from Zara)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Hensley: Falling Slowly

Scout Photo
Hi sweet cheeks! I love the sequence of these photos. The first shows your cross-eyed look, then the second you are on the verge of falling and your hands are reaching towards something secure (aka "Mom or dad, help please...don't you see I'm falling?"), and lastly you slid all the way down. You lie there helpless, and soon started to cry, which was really you saying, "Guys it's not funny anymore, or cute...pick me up now, please?" 

Since I told Tegegne that your cry is your way of talking, he asks me what you are saying each time you cry. It doesn't bother me, but really makes me realize that I do know what cry means what. Or I think I know. One cry means "please feed me," one means "put me to bed please," one means "hold me please," one means "I pooped and am uncomfortable," and one means "it's evening and I would like to express myself for a bit." I think that's about all you "say" for now. 

You are starting to smile and look us in the eyes, and it's pretty great. Your torso is already longer than mine and I'm quite sure you will be taller than me. Just please don't get taller than your brother, okay?


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Father & Son: Big Hands, Little Hands

Scout Photo.

You still prefer to imitate everything Ababayeh does. You always want to pick out a shirt that looks the same as his, or you ask him to wear his Chuck Taylors when you have yours on. Besides me, I'd say you are his biggest fan. He loves it. He will be so glad when you can ride your bike and run your legs alongside him. Oh what fun Hensley and I will have cheering you two on in your first race!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Kids: A Big Helper

Scout Photo. Nick Welch.
As you can see, aside from Michael, I have a big helper in the house named Tegegne. It is quite fun to have him help when I stay patient enough for him to do so. This morning he was holding her legs as I changed her diaper, and he did a great job. He helped lotion her belly after her bath, and loves to hold her. Hensley, you seem to enjoy hearing your brothers voice as he tries to sooth your cry or get you interested in a toy. Last night was a sweet moment. He came in and helped me sing you a song before you went to bed. He chose "God is so good" and sang it to you with all of his heart.

And to you big helper, I've been thinking of you as a little bitty baby a lot. I am often asked if it is hard that we didn't know you as a baby. Now that we have this sweet, cuddly little baby I would say yes. I wish I could have held you, rocked you, soothed you, and known you when you were so little. At the same time, I know that it was God's will for your dear birth mother to have those moments with you. Feeding you with her breast, soothing you with her voice. She even told us (when we met her) that you slept on her chest. I am sure that being near her was what you needed. Oh, but if we could only see a photo of your sweet baby cheeks. You have enjoyed us talking with you about what you were like as a little baby. We tell you that you probably cried as much as Hensley does, and that you had as many dirty diapers...but that birth mom most likely didn't use diapers like we use, etc, etc.

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