Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Our Thanksgiving Break:

We had a pretty perfect Thanksgiving break this year. Doug convinced me that we should stay home and save money by not traveling, get stuff done around the house, and enjoy being at home together with our little family. He was so right, it was just what we needed.

We celebrated a birthday.

On Thanksgiving I made pumpkin bars and green beans and we walked next door to have dinner with our neighbors. We stayed until little one was in desperate need of a nap. We walked home, took naps, and watched football. Doug worked in a our yard a whole lot. It is looking more like a yard and he is making our woods more beautiful. Henry and I went into town to give him some time to work. We came home to find a huge smile plastered on Doug's face and a roaring fire with a ton of wood piled up that needed to be burned.

We painted our guest bathroom. Hung up a mirror and some hooks that have been needing to be hung up for years. Doug built a work bench in the garage.

We went shopping on Black Friday, mainly because Henry was up at 5:30 that morning. We walked around Lowe's and Walmart and the only Black Friday deal we bought were a pair of $8.00 work gloves.

We watched Home Alone and listened to a lot of Christmas music.

We ate all of our meals at home...homemade pizza, muffin melts, spicy peanut noodles, chipotle bowls, pumpkin crumb cake, grilled cheese and tomato soup.

We went to church.

Had lots of good Henry play time.

Watched OU beat OSU in a close game. [boomer sooner]

We decked the halls, so to speak. Started meal planning for Christmas week with lots of family members coming and going.

It was the perfect combination of accomplishing tasks and resting and being together. I love time with just the three of us. There were so many moments over the past few days where I was reminded again of how full my life is of beautiful things. Our marriage, our child, our home, our friendships, and our ministry. So much to be thankful for.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Fall Wedding:

Our dear friends, Rhett and Jennifer, are married. We had such a wonderful weekend celebrating with them. Karen came over to stay with Henry since we had rehearsal dinner one night and the wedding the next. He loved all the Grandma time and I don't think she minded much. Doug and Justin planned a fun bachelor party the night before the wedding, they were out late into the night running around camp doing challenges. A pig was involved. It is safe to say, fun was had by all.

 The wedding was in a beautiful barn. I might have cried off and on throughout the entire ceremony. So much love and focus on our great God. I made sure to have a great view of the second groomsmen. He is mine.

The reception was full of so many great people and great conversation. Yummy food. Lots of dancing and laughing on the dance floor. Connecting with old summer staff. Simply enjoying the celebration.

We are so so so so happy and thankful for the love between our sweet friends, Rhett and Jennifer.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


12 Months:

- You take steps here and there. But only when you want to and never when we have the video camera out.
- You got a new car seat and you love looking out the window...you especially like the horses down in camp.
- We celebrated your actual birthday with a wake-up call from both mom and dad with an Elmo balloon, pancakes for breakfast, play time outside, pizza for dinner, and banana for dessert.
- You are a big fan of milk in your cup and you are mostly weaned!
- Your naps during the day are generally pretty short, but that means you like to be in bed at night around 6:30 or 7:00. Still waking up throughout the night...you can go ahead and stop doing that.
- You have a new love for being naked and you think it is rather funny to crawl off as fast as possible down the hallway when we are trying to get you in the bath.
- You have started to hug our necks, wave, and you have attempted a few kisses. All are super sweet.
- Your favorite toy is your walker. You push it all around the house, run with it down the hallway, and you are a champ at getting it unstuck from corners.
- You have a fake laugh. It makes us for real laugh lots.

Monday, November 19, 2012

One Week, One Year Part 3

      Well now you know why Danae is the administrator and primary author of our blog. She is far more consistent than I.  But I promised a week's worth of posts and I will follow through (even if part 7 isn't published until Henry's 2nd birthday).

Part 3
      The relief Danae and I felt upon seeing our baby boy after almost 36 hours of labor was soon erased by news that he was showing signs of some difficulty breathing.  After only about 4 minutes with Henry he was taken to the nursery to be monitored closely. As we approach Thanksgiving this week one of the things I am most thankful for is that the nurse was paying close enough attention to my son while administering the routine tests that she noticed a very slight flaring of his nostrils that indicated an issue.  Within hours of his birth Henry stopped breathing while asleep and had to be stimulated in order to get his lungs going again.  It is not worth stating what could have happened to our sweet baby if he had not been under the close watch of the nurses because he is here, and he is safe, and he is healthy.

       This was the first visit I made to the nursery to see Henry.  I was so thankful Henry was awake. He was just staring at my face and was so alert.  I got so much comfort just looking at those eyes. It was about 5 hours after Henry was born that I got to hold him for the first time, but his breathing took another dip just minutes after the nurse handed him to me so he had to go back to the bed.

        My dear friend Jon drove over from Tulsa to be with Danae and I that evening and while he was there the nurse came in to tell us that Henry had stopped breathing again.  I completely broke down. Tears and tears and tears. Something in my eyes must have been irreparably damaged because I have been exceptionally weepy since that time (no thanks for that Henry).  To this point that was the absolute worst I had felt, and my darling wife was going through all of this while recovering from the ridiculous labor. We were desperate for some good stuff.

       It was about 11:00pm before Danae got to come into the nursery with me and by that time we were both able to hold Henry and feed him.  Henry was alert and searching our faces (and just plain beautiful) and we cherished our first moments together as a family in spite of the complications. When we left him he seemed to be doing great which provided much needed peace for some much needed sleep.
       Day one of Henry's life was eventful to say the least.  We were not at all expecting what happened the next day but [SPOILER ALERT] there were more tears.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

One Week, One Year Part 2

         I will try to be brief in my retelling of the first week of Henry's life, but I want to take the opportunity to get this stuff down so that I don't forget the details (though at this point that seems impossible). At any rate I have decided to split up his first week into two posts so as not to overwhelm.

Henry just 11 hours old
         Saturday November 19th-  I went to work around 7am and worked until about 8pm. After work Danae and I went to our neighbor's house to watch the Sooners lose to the Baylor Bears (tear). We went home and talked then went to bed around 11:30pm. We only slept about an hour and a half because at around 1am Danae's water broke.

         Sunday November 20th- Saturday turned into Sunday in a blur of packing up our things and being giddy with excitement. We made it to the hospital around 3:00am believing our baby would be born that day.  That was not to be. As we were settling into the room we talked to the nurse about how we were hoping to do this thing with as little medical intervention as possible (to keep things cheap and natural).  21 hours later we accepted the reality that we would not be having a Sunday baby and all of our thoughts on medical intervention were tossed out the window-- we were just in survival mode. We laughed at the ridiculousness of the whole thing. The IV towers kept multiplying as time went on to accommodate the various medical fluids needed to keep everyone safe-- it looked absurd.

        Monday November 21st- Things were getting a little rough by 8am on Monday.  There was very little sleep/food (no food for Danae) and several tense moments where Henry's heart rate dropped dangerously low. This was definitely one of those situations that was far bigger than me. I was helplessly watching those monitors and doing everything I could to hold it together for Danae and for the baby.  I was flat out scared. The nurses were great (all three shifts), Danae was incredible, and by 12:26pm we had Henry! At the announcement of our boy I leaned down and said to Danae with a smile "Manhouse" because there is now a masculine majority.  Danae knows the truth-- her boys are wrapped around her little finger.

          I will leave you here for the night, faithful readers, with the joy of our baby finally being here!  Sleep tight and I will see you tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

One Week, One Year Part 1

        One week from today I will be the father of a 1 year old boy.  The faithful followers of this blog must be thinking 'Father? Where is Danae?'  Well Danae is not here (on the blog) today and in fact I will be taking over the controls for a week in order to document some of my thoughts and feelings about completing year one as a dad. Without further ado:

Day 1 Pre-Henry Baby Days-

         This is a picture of me in the women's clinic minutes after seeing an image and hearing the heartbeat (a complete surprise to me) of our tiny baby confirming that Danae was in fact pregnant.  What you cannot see in this picture is the large tears that rolled down my cheeks as soon as the doctor left the room (I kept it tough while he was there).  Upon seeing those tears Danae searched my face trying to determine if I was happy, sad, terrified or crazy. I was probably a mix of all of those (except sad), but at the time I just assured her how happy I was that I was going to be a dad.

         It is funny now looking at Henry and thinking that this was the same little guy I was thinking about, learning about, praying about and even singing about all those months.  There was so much mystery in the pregnancy. We knew very little about our baby; gender, personality, eye color, hair color. We knew there were fingers and toes and all the right organs (we took the Doc's words about certain organs). Most importantly we knew there was a tiny heart that was beating away and there was so much comfort at each appointment hearing the loud whoosh that we knew meant our baby was growing and healthy.

         Danae was a great pregnant lady. She was beautiful, joyful and graceful. I hope I did enough to take care of her and protect her.  We spent hours and hours talking about our little one and our dreams and ideals as parents.  It was an incredible time in our life but not as incredible as life has been since our boy made his appearance.


Monday, November 12, 2012

Football Dates:

This past weekend, Doug and I got to go to two football games. Friday night we went back to Doug's high school and watched their first game in the playoffs. We walked around the high school campus before the game and Doug told me stories from high school and I asked questions about how his huge high school worked. Our schooling experience was pretty different. The score at the end of the first quarter was 42-0, Jenks. It was not much of a game but we enjoyed pretending like we were high school students again, watching the bands, and lamenting about how much older we feel sitting on metal bleachers for several hours.

On Saturday we headed to Norman to go to an OU game. We dropped Henry off at Grandpa's house and went on our second date in two days to another football game. It was a fun game and just a little bit bigger, louder, and more exciting than the night before. OU won and we ended up getting to move down and sit with our friends Eric and Ashley towards the end of the game.

It is not everybody's idea of great quality time together, but Doug and I both loved our two football dates.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Look What I Found:

Pictures of dating and engaged Doug and Danae! I have love being this ones friend, girlfriend, fiance, and wife. We have a pretty great thing going on.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


- Watching Henry play and explore. It is especially fun when he is playing alone and we can just sit and watch him discover new things. It is also pretty great watching him push his walker around in his little tennis shoes.
- A newly organized garage

- Hair line regrowth. I was expecting a lot of my hair to fall out post pregnancy. I was not prepared for the weird, stray hairs that have grown on my hair line.
- Teething, weaning, and time change all in the same few days. Lots of mom guilt and one little confused baby over here.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Mornings Together:

Today is Doug's day off. Mornings at home as a family have quickly become one of my favorite things. This morning Henry and I got up together and made some blueberry pancakes. Henry ate more than I did. He has a serious love for pancakes. Henry started crawling around the kitchen and Doug grabbed the camera and took these pictures. I love when Henry stops what he is doing to pose for the camera. I have serious love in my heart for this kid.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

11 Months:

- Favorite book is Busy Baby Book of Words. He likes to flip the pages and gets worried once the book is finished. His face lights up once you turn the book over and start again.
- Takes tiny little steps between Doug and I
- His face lights up when you open the pantry to get out the cheerios or reach in the fruit basket for a banana.
- Says "Hi"
- Dances when music is on or will bob his head
- Likes being out and about, he gets restless and bored if we are inside for too long
- Loves to be outside
- Loves Maxwell (and other dogs)

Thursday, November 1, 2012


I have never really liked Halloween. I am not big into dressing up, even as a kid I liked handing out candy better than dressing up and going out. In kindergarten a kid told me that Halloween was Satan's birthday, so that ruined all the fun for me as a kid. Doug on the other hand, loved Halloween as a kid. In fact, it was his favorite holiday.  He rocked Halloween, as you can probably imagine.

We did not want to spend money or too much time and energy on a costume for Henry. But I did feel like we should do something for his first Halloween. Before we went to pick Doug up from work I put together this outfit. He was our little runner, since he keeps us running after him. And, we already had every thing he is wearing. Cheap, easy, and pretty cute.

We went a few friends houses to show off our little runner. Then came home to have dinner, play time, and bed time. Doug and I did watch Nightmare Before Christmas together. Maybe that will be our Halloween tradition as a family.