Friday, February 29, 2008

The Stats

Kendrick's doctor's appointment went well today. No news. Just a perfect baby.

Height: 27" 75th%
Weight: 16 lbs. 11 oz. 50th%
Head Circumfrence: 17 1/4" 50th%


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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Happy Half Birthday, Kendrick





Today is Kendrick turned 6 months old. He is a happy little guy and fairly laid back, although not much of a napper. He is finally to the point where he will sleep about 7 hours without waking to eat.




And since we are on the subject of eating....Special thanks goes out to our favorite Occupational Therapist, Anna. She helped me figure out how to get Kendrick's tongue working the right way so that he can eat solid food. For the past month I have been putting cereal on my finger, prying his mouth open and putting it in the side of his cheek. Just this week he has taken to the spoon, although he still won't open his mouth very well. He loves bananas and applesauce so far. I guess it's time for me to get out the Cuisinart and start making other foods. Today I couldn't get the spoon in fast enough and he even cried when it was over.



Tomorrow he goes in for his check-up. We are ultra-excited because Dad is off work tomorrow and gets to go with us! So, I'll post his new stats then.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Stream of Consciousness


Naps these days are hit and miss. Two weeks ago he didn't nap a wink. Last week he slept every day. The following is what understandable real words I heard on his monitor today. I'm not sure he yet realizes I can hear everything.


There are no more alligators! They have all gone away. Mater-like Tuh-mater without the Tuh. I'm Lightning McQueen. Singing Vivaldi's Four Seasons-Spring-Allegro. No, I don't wanna. I'm not going. Yes, you do. You not me, go next door. Singing Jingle Bells with "brrr" for the words. It's sunny outside. The sun came out!


Silence.


Bob the Builder, Bob the Builder. Can we do it? Yes we can. (Sounds a little like Obama.) Singing Silent Night on "dub-buh-dub-dub." I think. I know. God loves. I'm not sure, Mommy. Ho, ho, hum. Yawn. Where are we?


Silence.


Dah! Laughing. Go this way and find another game to play (from Fox in Socks). Pig band. Big band. Broom band. Go right here so you don't. But I need too. Oh, man. I'm good. Hower, gower, bower. (from Wocket in my Pocket). Bamboo. Be careful. Bump your head.

A hobby


Today in Sunday School Carol Beth and I were discussing last weekend since we weren't at church. I told her about the motorcycle and she asked, "Why did he want a motorcycle?" After thinking about it for a week, I decided, not only did it help with our car situation, it is Stephen's "hobby."


Stephen is not an avid sports fan. He doesn't go to football, basketball, or soccer games. He likes to hunt, and if we lived closer to his parents he might do it more often. But, he's not really into that either. He likes to sail, but we moved to far away from the Bay. Golf is not is game either. He didn't really have a hobby. Now that he has a motorcycle, he has an outlet other than watching re-runs of movies on the TBS or USA channels. I'm happy he's having fun.


Last night was my friend, Wendy's birthday party. We met her and her friends in Rice Village for dinner and we took the bike. It was my first time to ride more than 100 yards. It was a little sacry at first and I prayed the biggest prayer I've ever prayed in my life! I got used to it though and towards the end, enjoyed it. It still makes me nervous though. We need to get a backrest so I don't feel like I might fly off! It was a bit chilly, but really not bad.


This afternoon is gorgeous and so Stephen and one of our neighbors (whose trailor we borrowed to get the bike home) went riding this afternoon. I'm glad that Stephen now has something that he enjoys doing and has a "Boy"-friend to hang out with. He needed an outlet with all the work he has been doing the past 4 years.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Heaven




This week has been extremely busy now that I am in a Cantare rehearsal period. We are preparing for a set of concerts in 2 weeks, so I am rehearsing about every other to every 3 days. It's consuming enough that it has cut into my work-out schedule! I haven't exercised since Tuesday. Anyway, I digress.


What I have been thinking about the past couple of days is heaven. Why you may ask? No, I am not suicidal and I don't have any crazy disease that I am dying of. But, everything in my life lately has all lined up and it pointing me that direction. I don't know why.


First, the concert Cantare is doing is called "The Ecstacies Above: Heavenly". We are singing Durufle's Requiem (which incidentally was written for Durufle's father's death), The Ecstacies Above by Tarik O'Regan, and a Brahms motet. I didn't really think anything of it. I love Durufle's Requiem and it is a piece I really don't have to practice as I studied it while working on my Masters in Conducting.


Second, I just finished "90 Minutes in Heaven" by Don Piper. I had seen this book laying around my grandparent's house and thought-- Interesting. I wonder what it says. So, I saw it in Target a couple of weeks ago and bought it. I didn't even realize that the whole story takes place in and around Houston--places I am VERY familiar with including, Huntsville, Pasadena and the Medical Center. Two nights ago, as I was nearing the end, I realized I knew the author's daughter as a collegue as a choir director in the Clear Creek School district.


Third, my sister Candace posts a blog about a Renewed Earth and an article in Time magazine. Quite interesting stuff. So, after a quick discussion with her on the phone, she sends me some more info and a fascinating website (which explain's everything about the world you ever wanted to ask God) to look at to explain a bit more.


I am not sure why God is focusing me on "heaven" right now. But there must be a reason.
P.S.-- As I was searching for a picture to accompany I found this great artist on Flickr, Marketseq. He calls them VerseVisions Art. Cool ideas and paintings! Ok, upon further investigation, this guy has created Blurb books (which is also my publishing choice these days.) Check it out! I love it! He must know the Psalty tapes too!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Sweet Sibling Silliness

Tuesday is our rest day. There are no obligations, no classes to take or teach. At first, I dreaded the day. Cavett and I always needed something to do everyday to get out of the house. Now that Kendrick is here, that rule no longer applies. I have come to really enjoy my Tuesdays. Besides catching up on all the laundry, dishes and general picking up, we get to relax and take the day at our own pace. Cavett stayed in his pj's until around 10. Kendrick got a good morning nap.

After Kendrick's nap we decided to have a picnic in the park. We loaded up the double jogging stroller with lunch and headed out to the big "green" park as Cavett calls it. We did the usual: talk on the talking tubes, go down the fire pole, and pretend we are at the cash register at Chick-Fil-A. But the best thing was watching Cavett push Kendrick in the swing. It was Kendrick's first experience on a playground swing. He liked Mom pushing him, but he thought it was much more fun when Cavett did it.

Our picnic was cut short by a fussy baby and the wind blowing made it pretty chilly. As you know Cavett is a slow eater, so he had to eat his lunch on the way back home. The deal was--he either had to take a bite of his sandwich or run beside the stroller. After one bite, he decided he'd rather run. I guess he ran for about 5 minutes and then decided he would finish eating. He finally finished the entire half of his sandwich by the time we got back to the house, 30 minutes later.

On our way home without any prompt, he said he liked going to the park and having a picnic. I asked him what his favorite part was and he said, "pushing Kendrick on the swing and making him laugh." Me too, Cavett. Me too.
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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Nee-how!


I don't think that is how you spell it in Chinese, but I know that is how you say it. It means "hello" in Chinese. As soon as we got to Grand Saline this weekend, that was the first thing out of Cavett's mouth to Uncle John. (While working for Dell computers, John has been living in Shanghai for the past several years). I was worried that Cavett would pull the whole, "I'm shy" bit. But, even though he has seen John on only two other occasions in his life, it was as if they had been together for years.


It was another great weekend spent on the farm. All of Stephen's family was here except 2 of Karen's boys, Thomas and Stanton. The first couple of days were rainy and dreary, but today is gorgeous, just windy and cold. Cavett got to ride the pug, fish and play on the hay bales. We also ate very well. John had really good steaks and hamburgers shipped from New York.


We are so blessed with a wonderful family on both sides. There is no such thing in our family as the dreaded "in-laws."

Saturday, February 16, 2008

It finally happened...


Stephen now has a motorcycyle. Here's the story.




Two years ago he convinced me to let him take a motorcycle class at the Harley Dealership. Knowing we would not be able to afford to buy a bike, I thought this would cure his itch. It didn't. So this fall the deal was if he finished the Houston Marathon, he could get a used bike. That's what everyone has recommended anyway, since you will lay your first bike down at some point. After training for a month or so. Stephen pulled something in his calf and the running stopped. The marathon came and went. I thought it was over. Little did I know, Stephen had other ideas.




He got on craigslist and looked for someone who was interested in bartering services and goods. He found a guy in Houston that owned a furniture store who wanted dentistry. Stephen contacted him and said, "I don't need furniture, but I am looking for a motorcycle." This guy made it happen. He traded someone else furniture for a motorcycle and then dentistry for the bike.




We went to Dallas today to pick it up. It is a Yamaha Roadliner 2006, but it is brand new. We picked it up from a dealership who I guess never sold this bike 2 years ago.




So, this will now be Stephen's main transportation to and from work. The Saturn in now 11 years old and falling apart. It no longer has a side right mirror and the transmission is shot. The Expedition has over 100,000 miles on it now. So, the eventual plan is to park the Expedition for a while, and trade the Saturn in for a a smaller more fuel efficient car for me and the kids.




Please keep Stephen in your prayers. He is a careful driver and not a risk taker, it's the other people on the road that I am worried about!


Thursday, February 14, 2008

How much fun can you have in the car?


This evening we drove to Grand Saline, TX to visit Stephen’s brother, John, who is in from China. On the way we munched on Chick-Fil-A and watched Mary Poppins. But the most fun was had during the last hour and a half.

We turned off the DVD player and the radio and sang. We sang everything from SongPlay songs, John Denver’s “Grandma’s Feather Bed,” musical numbers, lullabies, folk songs, nursery rhymes, and church songs. It brought back such wonderful memories of driving to the farm hanging over the front bench seat of our blue station wagon.

Toward the end we began playing “Guess the Secret Song.” I would hum it and he would try to guess the name of the song. He was really pretty good at it. Then he decided that he would give it a try. He hummed “Twinkle Twinkle,” but of course since it is 3 different songs (Twinkle, Baa Baa Black Sheep and ABC’s) we guessed the wrong one. I’m not sure if he realizes that that tune has 3 names or not, but every time it was his turn he hummed that tune, but said it was a different name. He did name one of the three tunes above though.

It’s really too bad that families today have DVD and CD players in the car. This tradition of musical family bonding is a lost art. Who sings in the car anymore without the radio? It was such fun listening to Cavett giggle and sing along in a sweet, sweet voice. If you’ve never tried it, go one day in the car without the radio/CD/DVD player and see what happens.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

How much fun can you have with sofa cushions?












SOOOO MUCH!!!!!!!! Thanks sisters!






New Pictures


Stephen finally finished rebuilding our upstairs computer which holds the majority of our data, including photo storage. Last night he gave me the go ahead to start using it. It is so much faster, it's unbelievable!!! This afternoon I loaded and updated all our pictures to our website. Enjoy!

Monday, February 11, 2008

PB & J

You probably have thought that we have dropped off the face of the earth since I haven't been writing, but the truth is, 1-I have been lacking creative juices lately. I haven't even had any exciting ideas about the baby quilt for Walker Russell Alexander. 2-There hasn't really been anything to write about. We are just going about the daily grind, trying to get it all done. 3- I started teaching again. Not only am I teaching 2 SongPlay classes, but I am taking Kendrick to one while Cavett is at school and then also conducting warm-ups for the Chancel Choir at church every Wednesday night. (If you check out that last link, you will see a pic of Stephen in the top left hand corner). Whew!


On top of that our weekend was full of college friends (Sha-Nay-Nay and Chuck) staying at our house Friday night and then planning our camping and Grand Saline trip for next weekend.


So, a little happy today.....Cavett had Nutter Butters for snack today at school. I asked him what he thought about them and he said he liked them. So, I convinced him to have a quarter of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch. For those of you not up on the Cavett dinner dilema, he is not necessarily picky as he will eat veggies and fruit, but it's usually a rotation of chicken nuggets, fish sticks, hot dog and raviloli for the main entree. To add something like this that will work for lunch at school is HUGE!!!!! Now, he wasn't really asking for more, but at least he ate it.


Sunday, February 3, 2008

Oh, What a Night!


As you were reading the title, Oh What a Night, you might have been confused. I'm not talking about the Super Bowl. In fact, Stephen asked me if I even knew who was playing. I said "I am pretty sure the Patriots and then maybe the Eagles or Packers?" Ok, so I guess I had at least one right. Who cares who wins this game and how will it really effect my life? And, why is such a big deal? People don't go crazy over the World Series or the Basketball finals like this. Do they? Maybe it is yet another "reason" to just have a party.


Anyway, unknowingly, back in December I bought tickets to the musical, Jersey Boys, for Stephen's birthday. Originally, I got Sunday night tickets because there were good seats open that day and he had Monday off. (But, that got changed to Friday...oh well). Stephen didn't even realize until a week ago that it was Super Bowl either, so don't feel too bad about him missing it.


We went to dinner at Artista which is the restaurant at the theater. Fantastic food. Highly recommended, but our service was a little slow due to the fact it was SB night and everyone is trying to get out of there just in time for the show. In fact, we weren't able to get our dessert in time, so we got our Tres Leches at intermission for free. Theirs is the best in Houston.


It was a great show and I think Stephen enjoyed it. I had already seen it in NY a couple of years ago. It won Best Tony that year as well. So, if it comes to your area or you go to NYC, go see it. It's a good time and if you are from The Four Seasons era (60's) I'm sure it will bring back memories.
For those of you young-ens or who have no music knowledge they sang the following:

Saturday, February 2, 2008

First Free Weekend


This was Stephen's first 3 day weekend off from work, with no agenda or trip. It was fantastic! Thursday evening I almost could have done several cartwheels it felt so good. I was as giddy as a school girl. It had been a long time since I had that TGIF feeling. We headed out to BW3's for some wings and to celebrate.




Friday we had a leisurly monring and then took Cavett to school. We ran a few (more than I could do alone with a baby in that time span) errands and picked him back up at noon. That afternoon we cleaned the garage, trimmed bushes and played outside. You really should have seen the before picture of the garage. You could hardly walk through it to the back door. To top it off we had steak on the grill for dinner.




Today we went to 3 different motorcycle dealerships, the zoo and then Ruggles Cafe for lunch. We then got a nap, worked out, and showered. Tonight is a Mardi Gras party at Anna's house. (I made a King Cake this week for this party and I can't wait to dig into it!)




What a weekend! I loved spending so much time with Stephen. It's been a long three years of working 6 days a week. He is the best husband in the world and I am so lucky to have him. I love you, sweetie!