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Newsletter: 10 Months

Friday, July 18th, 2008

So I’m half a month late.  We’ve been very busy, with guests and out of town the last two weekends.

But your ninth month was full of fun.  We managed to get a trip to visit Grammy and Grandpa in Spring Branch.  Mommy and I even went out for a nice dinner with friends and spent the night in Austin while you 2 stayed at G&G’s house.  You did wonderfully of course, and we were so happy to see you the next afternoon at Oma’s room.  And to top it off it was father’s day.  A great first one for me seeing as how I got to paddle at the Buena Vista play park the day before.

Ab’s is now all over the place, crawling as fast a child can crawl.  Also pulling up on everything and standing for long periods of time.

Geo is getting more adventurous leaning way over and even getting on you knees and using your hands to pull your upper body in the direction you want to go.  And you’re very proficient at rolling to what you want.

You’re still getting new finger foods, such as green beans, peaches rolled in wheat germ, yogurt, plums, bread, and pizza crusts, and loving evry bit of it.

Sorry for the short update, but I’ll get more next month.



Newsletter: 9 Months

Thursday, June 12th, 2008

Daddy is running late this month.  Sorry, I got sick on your birthday and am just now getting better.  Woo hoo!

This past month was another very packed full of fun month.  It seems like we never stop these days.  Things have gotten much warmer temperature wise so we have been enjoying some out-of-door activities.  You two both love to be outside and take in the sun and fresh air.  There were many more walks in the jog stroller, and a couple of runs (or at least one:)!)

We also rode the bikes to church twice.  The second Sunday we did so was quite eventful.  I was pulling you 2 in the trailer when I blew my front tire about 1.2 miles from the house.  So I moved the trailer to Mommy’s bike and she continued while I walked home (remember to pack a spare tube next time).  I met up with her as service was starting (missed SS).  After church we went to a SS picnic at a local park.  Well we (I won’t throw anyone under the bus here) thought the picnic was at a park south of the church so we headed there.  Turns out it was at a picnic north of the church so we headed that way and met up with everyone, a little more tired and sweaty, but we got there before the party was over.

This month was your first time to attend our annual Crawfish boil.  We had quite the showing and some great mudbugs supplied by Nana and Pop.  Neither of you really had an idea what was going on.  And Abs slept through much of the party, much to the chagrin of most of the attendees who really wanted to catch a glimpse of you two.  But it was a great time none-the-less.

This month we also headed to Houston the visit the Morris clan.  You two headed down with Mommy, Nana and Pop, getting to sleep in their trailer for the very first time.  I came down a day late due to Memorial day traffic.  We had a good time, and you two got to swim in a pool for the first time.  You were both a little apprehensive at first but loved it in the end, getting to splash and kick to your little heart’s content.  While at the pool we saw some cool floaties that we picked up for you at Target.  You both loved sitting in them when we got to use them at the Stelzer’s a week later.

You have both continued to be excellent eaters, and have begun eating some non-pureed food, such as green beans, bananas, and bread (or pizza) crust.  Broken into pieces of course, but you both love trying to pick up the pieces and get them to your mouth.  You have also moved on to sippy cups for you beverage consumption.  This is still a work in progress as it is too fun to fill your mouth by biting on the spout and letting it drain out of your mouth.

G, you have gotten very strong and sit up very well on your own, turning from side to side and bending and reaching every which way to grab what you want.  You also love the exer-saucer now, as well as standing next to your music table.  You have also taken to rolling all over the place to get from place to place.  I’m guessing you’ll be on the move in no time.

A, you are the crawling machine.  Actually, you are more interested now in pulling up to standing on whatever is sitting in front of you.  This includes people, tables, chairs, your bumbo, etc.  The only bad part is when you get near my legs when I have shorts on and you grab tufts of leg hair and tug and tug.  Ouch.

That’s it for the month.  We’ll fill up this one as well I’m sure, loving every minute of it.




Monday, June 2nd, 2008

Had a good weekend.  Went to some friends’ house for dinner and swimming Saturday night.  Actually, Carrie and the kids swam while I enjoyed a pleasant evening.  Finished the day with a 3.1 miler.  Didn’t want to get too fired up so close to bed.  Good run, missed the heat of the day, but the concrete still had all of the day’s heat stored up and kept the evening fairly warm.

Sunday we rode to church.  Actually, I rode about half way before blowing out the front tire.  I recently got a new pair of tires for the road bike from performance bike.  Kevlar and wire and supposedly great for cut protection.  Most of the comments about the tires were good, with an exception of them being excessively narrow.  I’ve been running 700×19 lately and really enjoy that width (makes me feel a little faster than I am).  But I took heed and ordered 700×25.  They are actually narrower than my previous tires, and that led the the blowout.  I think I was running them at too high pressure and I noticed after about .75 mile that I was getting a bulge on the front tire.  Slowed down and thought the sidewall of the tire had blown, but kept on as we were a tad late.  Bulge got bigger and, BANG!  Tire blew.  Moved the trailer to Carrie’s bike and walked home.  Noticed that the side wall was just fine, so the tire must have come unseated from the rim.  Definitely have to run lower pressure in them.

Anyway, got the other bike ready to roll and headed off the church.  We had a Sunday School picnic afterward and thought it was at one park (south side of town), when in actuality it was at another (north side of town).  So we got in an extra 5 miles or so of riding before getting to the picnic.  But it really was a great day to ride even though I was in long sleeves and pants.

Memorial Day

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Had an enjoyable long weekend.  With the exception of leaving Friday after work, only to turn around and go home after moving 9 miles in an hour and a half.  Thanks construction and possibly a wreck on I-35.

Made it to the H-town mid-afternoon Saturday, in time to get to the pool for C’s b-day party.  We got the babies into the pool for their very first time.  They did protest for the first few minutes, but then had a blast splashing and kicking.  Both G and A tried to put their face down in the water and came up with big gasps.  Quite entertaining.   Ended the evening swimming 600M in the lap pool.  Wasn’t bad, but the pool is outside and was full of all sorts of tree debris.

Went back to the pool Saturday and repeated the drill with the kiddos, but passed on doing laps as we had Pei Wei take-out at the pool as soon as we got there.

Headed home via Austin for a visit to see Granny, Grammy and Grandpa.  We had a good visit and made our way home by 11PM.  Not too shabby.

Haven’t gotten out of bed early enough to hit the Y yet this week, but did mow the lawn last night into the early darkness.

8 Months

Thursday, May 8th, 2008

Happy 8 Months G&A. It was another busy month full of lots of new tricks. The biggest has probably been you 2 both sitting up all on your own. You both love to sit around your cool music and alphabet play table hitting the buttons and making noise. The sitting up has also made bath-time much more bearable as you love to sit up and grab for toys and the cup that I use to rinse you off with.

George has gotten extremely strong and has taken to rolling over from front to back and from back to front. You also graduated from your sleeping “blocks” and have taken to roaming around your crib while you sleep just like A. We have been surprised to find you rolled over onto your stomach even. You are still sweet as ever and still love to break into laughter at the drop of a hat. The first two weeks of the last month were filled with ear infections. However, to combat what seems to be horrible allergies, we’ve been giving you regular Dimatap, and (knock-on-wood) you’ve been ear infection free since. And you love the grape-y goodness.

Abigail has become our on-the-go girl. You have lost all desire to stay in one place, and have become very adept at rolling from place to place. You have also begun creeping forward and backward on all fours. Well, all fours plus your head. IT is quite entertaining to watch as you get up on all fours and rev-up by rocking back and forth and growling at the same time. You have also begun sleeping on you belly with your monkey for a pillow and your knees pulled up underneath you, kind of like Child’s Pose. Very cute.

There have been all sorts of great new foods such as plums, zucchini, carrots and broccoli. You have also move to eating your first “solid” foods. You both really enjoy the little puffed rice alphabet crackers and love to try to pick them up off your tray and stick them in your mouth. Mommy also found you some great rice crackers that have a lot of crunch to them and are perfect for you to hold and chew up.

This past month we had a visit from Grammy and Grandpa who rushed in when I had to go to Amarillo for a business trip. They stayed for the weekend and helped us plant flowers in the garden while keeping you two inside out of the pollen. Uncle Billy also came down to meet you for the first time. He also ran the OKC Half-Marathon, which I was supposed to run with him. Grammy and Grandpa came up that Saturday but had to return to Austin quickly to see to Oma, who began having breathing problems. We had a great time with Uncle Billy though, showing him around Norman and OKC, even attending your first outdoor festival, the Oklahoma City Arts Festival. We missed seeing Uncle Billy cross the finish line, but did bundle up for what turned out to be a cold and blustery morning, to watch some of the other finishers and ran into quite a few friends.

We continued the festivals this past weekend, heading out to the Mayfair in Norman.  Lots of neat art and some rockin’ kids bands.  Plus the weather was just gorgeous.  The other big event, at least for me, was this past Sunday, taking you 2 out for your very first bike ride.  We got the bikes in working order and loaded you into the trailer and went for a spin around the neighborhood.  You were both just looking around at everything and seemed to enjoy the whole event.  Can’t wait to get out again.  We’re thinking the bikes are a perfect way to get out to restaurants and church this early summer.

Funny event of the month was when the refrigerator door refused to close. Turns out the fridge the previous owners of our house had left for us was 23 years old. The inside of the door had become cracked and so it lost all of its rigidity. Being so old there was no chance to find a replacement, so we ended up getting a new fridge. But before the new one came in, we had to use a chair to prop the door shut. We contemplated using duct tape, but decided that would be too redneck.



7 Months, belated issue

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

It has been very busy around the house lately. No time to sit still at all. And very little time to write. Sorry kiddos.

You both have had a good month this past month. George is getting very strong and Abigail is so very close to crawling. Geo is now standing up holding onto the side of the exersaucer just smiling and trying to grab Abigail. And your head and trunk strength is getting better every day. Abs is getting up on all fours and getting quite adept at rolling from place to place. You have even begun scooting backward. It is not long until you are moving around on all fours.

The big news for the month is that Abs got her first two teeth. Both are on the bottom at the front. George also was the first to get double ear infections. We only knew about them as he was running a temp. No screaming or acting hurt, just a high fever that wouldn’t go away. After a week, Abs began crying and fussing a lot and began running the same high fever, so we went back to the Dr. and she had an ear infection as well, plus Goe’s had survived the 1st round of antibiotics. There were a couple of very long nights mixed in.

This month also included the mixed emotions of saying see ya later to Uncle Rashawn, Aunt Ne-Ne and Reba-Grace as they headed out to Reston, VA for a new job.

This month, we also made another trip to Shreveport to meet the Roberts family at Mad’s 1st B-day party. Also got to see the Gibson clan and introduce you to them while enjoying some great Strawn’s breakfast.

We also had a visit from Grammy for nearly a week as she came to our rescue as your nanny was out for a few weeks. We had a great time, and you two loved all of the extra attention.

That’s it for this month. Next month we’ll try to get back on time and more indepth.



6 Months

Tuesday, March 11th, 2008

Woohoo! We’ve made it a whole half year. Can’t believe how fast it has flown by. I think that is what the sleep deprivation is good for. I can barely (but still able) to remember those early weeks and months of little to no sleep. The folks at the office have recently said they didn’t think I’d make it, as tired as I looked every day.

We’ve definitely hit our stride in parenting, and while every now and then something throws us for a loop, Mommy and I seem to have some form of a grasp on you two. And we love every bit of it.

This month was very busy (I think I’m beginning to see a pattern). We have really stepped up the solid foods. You both now eat 2 solid food meals every day. Your palates now know peas (George’s favorite and still not liked by Abs), squash, sweet potatoes (Ab’s personal fav), and oatmeal. We have dropped rice cereal from the menu, since once you two tasted oatmeal, there was no going back to rice. You both have recently taken to really liking your oatmeal with prune juice mixed in, and like it pretty thick.

You both are great eaters, however G is by far the most anxious to eat. G began growling at Mommy and I between bites when we are taking too long. You can’t wait for that next bite, and you have a voracious appetite, eating around 6 ounces of solid food per feeding. A is very patient and enjoys each bite, taking a small break in between.

G you have really gotten stronger over the last 3 weeks of PT and home exercises. You are now holding your head up very well, and standing with our help quite a bit. You have also really begun to enjoy tummy and back time and are getting quite adept at rolling from side to side and even from your tummy onto your back. This month you also discovered that you have feet, and they are so much fun to grab and pull. Whenever we put you in a chair or on your back, you immediately kick your legs up in the air and start reaching for your toes. You’ve even pulled your socks off a couple of times.

A you have continued your remarkable strength. You very rarely stay on your back, even when you sleep. You almost instantly roll to your tummy and start looking side to side, pushing your entire chest off the ground. You have scooted backward a few times and have really started turning sideways. We don’t think it’ll be long before you figure out how to propel yourself forward.

We got another trip in this month that was very special for us all. We went down to Austin to visit Grammy and Grandpa, and all our Austin friends. Daddy ran the 1/2 marathon while A&D ran the full. You 2 got to witness the finishing sprint of A&D. You also got to meet my Granny, your Oma for the first time. She was just tickled to meet you 2 and had to show you off to her friends down at the dinner hall. You were both very well behaved, and G of course gave some great snuggles to Oma. You also got to meet Aunt Amy and Uncle Drew and all of Mommy’s co-workers. Finally we spent the night and had a great evening with the Bailies and got to meet Belle for the very first time. The Bailies also hosted Hannah, Cameron and Presley for dinner. We had a great time catching up with them as well.

That’s it for this month. Keep growing.



Newsletter: 5 Months

Wednesday, February 6th, 2008

You turned 5 months old this past Sunday, on the day of the Super Bowl.  A year ago, Mommy and I would have never dreamed we would be in our current situation of having 5 month old twins!  We knew there was one of you, but hadn’t quite yet received word of the second blessing.  My how things change.

This has been a very big month for you two.  Tops on the list of milestones has to be the introduction of “solid” foods to your diet.  Soon after your 4 month check-up, we began giving you rice cereal, mixed with breast milk.  It started off more like milk with a touch of rice flake.  You were both intrigued by the new manner of feeding by spoon, and it took a little time for you to get the hang of it.  There was a lot of modeling of proper mouth opening by Mommy and I, which was always followed by huge open mouth grins and laughing by you two.  It was such a fun game.

Slowly, but surely, you got the hang of it, and we kept increasing the consistency of the cereal until it was as thick as grits.  Not cheesy grits, but plain grits, requiring a bit of chewing motion and testing your swallowing ability.  Once you got the hang of that, which took about a week, we moved into veggies.  Mommy made you some delicious pureed peas, and this past Saturday you got to try them out.  George took one bite and was a bit confused, but pushed through and ended up eating his whole serving.  Abigail took one bite and gave a very confused look.  She was not so sure of this new taste, and kept her lips quite pursed throughout the whole experience.  When we decided to mix the peas with a little rice cereal, she recognized that this was indeed food and reluctantly ate some.  She’s still not so sure of the peas, but will eat them in a 50/50 mixture with rice cereal.  We’ll try acorn squash this weekend.

This month also featured a trip to Nana and Pop’s house to celebrate Pop’s 72nd Birthday.  We had a full car on the way down to Shreveport, with Mommy and I up front, you two in the back seat, and Boomer in the rear of the Jeep.  We also had a load up top in the car top carrier.  We decided to try driving at night to let you two sleep, and it worked out great.  We left Norman at 7PM, and only had to stop once to feed you in Dallas, and pulled into Shreveport at 1AM.  We were very pleased.

We had a great time in Shreveport, getting to introduce you two to a large number of our friends and family.  Friday, we got to have luch at Earthereal and meet John and Katie.  Then we went over to Pop’s old shop to meet the guys over there.  Then we got to hang out with Kendal, Lauren, Camper and Carlisle, which included a dinner at Superior where we were seated at a large round table in the middle of the dining room, and drew quite a crowd of onlookers.  People were amazed to see such a crowd at one table.

Saturday we saw the Morris’ crew and had a great party for Pop at Monjunis where you got to meet the Millers, the Blackwoods, the Pitts, Tucker, Sandy, Joby, Jim and Margrette, and the Stephens.  Even though you two were very tired and cried for part of the party, everyone enjoyed getting to meet you.

The drive back Sunday didn’t go nearly as smooth as the trip there.  We left a little earlier, at 5PM, and we ended up having to stop more often as you two were getting tired of being in your seats.  We ended up getting in at 1AM, so an extra 2 hours of travel time.  We have vowed to travel only late at night from here on.  But we did have a great experience on the way home.  We were needing a place to feed you around 9:30PM in Dallas, and decided to head to Central Market, as we also needed some supplies not available in Norman.  They close at 10PM, but allowed us to stay until we were finished feeding you two.  And the very nice manager on duty even brought Mommy a glass of water while I was out walking Boomer.  First class group there.

The other highlight was a visit from Grammy and Grandpa the first of February.  It was a little rocky as you had to remember who they were at first, but you two had a great time with them, including going on walks and getting held a lot.  And Grammy got to feed you peas and laughed the whole time at your faces covered in the green goo.

That’s it for now.  We’ll see what fun awaits this month.

Love,  Daddy

I’m back

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Actually haven’t been gone, too far anyway.  Still moderately recovering from the trip to Shreveport.  We had a great time, other than a lack of sleep.  Got in a run Friday morning, somewhere in the 3.5-4 mile range with some decent hills thrown in.  Was meaning to hit the long run Saturday, but woke up very sore and tired, same for Sunday.  Didn’t get any other runs in during the trip, but did get some great food.  Got to hit up Superior Bar and Grill, Monjunis and Johnny’s Pizza.  Good stuff.

Got back to Norman at 12:45 in the am on Monday, got up and hit the pool for 5 sets of 100M free, 50M breast.  Felt good to get the legs pumping.  Hit the pool Tuesday am as well for the same workout.  Got to basketball and ran the equivalent of my track workout-1 full hour of near full on sprints.  And I was definitely feeling it this morning.

Today I was up and at the Y by 7AM for 30 min on the bike-random intervals for a total of 9.10 miles.  Followed it up with a swim.  Did one set of 100M free, 50M breast, followed by 400M free.  It was a great swim, something finally clicked.  I no longer feel as though I’m fighting each and every stroke and kick.  Today I finally found a rhythm and was able to get my breathing down where I didn’t feel like I was struggling.  It was a nice easy pace, equivalent to a conversational pace on a run.  Hadn’t been able to find that ever before.  Also focused on full torso rotation on both sides with smooth entry into the water.  Wow.

Don’t know what set it off.  Maybe cycling before, which left my legs a little our of it, so I wasn’t flailing my legs, or just focusing on form.  Plus I was sporting tri-shorts for the first time (sorry for the bad visual), and actually felt like I was slicing through the water as opposed to the drag of my conventional swim trunks.  Hopefully I’ll be able to replicate it again.

Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007

It has been very busy around here the last week. Sorry for the lack of posts. Even sorrier for the lack of running.

Last week ended up being a rest week (if there is such a thing) as the cold bug bit hard. I had the worst head cold I’ve had in years. Didn’t feel like doing anything but going to work and returning home to lay on the couch. Was feeling better by Friday and almost went out for a run Friday evening to ease the legs back in, but cooked, and ate, a delicious dinner instead. Plus Grammy and Grandpa were in town, so wanted to spend some time with them.
So Saturday I decided to make some mileage for the week, well, at least mileage compared to the rest of the week. Ended up putting a pretty nice 6.5 miles. The weather was delightful, blowing wind with a hint of snow/sleet and dropping temperatures. For the Saturday morning before Christmas, surprisingly light traffic about.

Saturday it snowed about 2 inches in Norman, so we ended up going for a walk to see the accumulation and slick neighborhood streets.

Sunday I ended up passing on a run, but intended to go Monday. Instead, Pop and I cut limbs out of the trees that had cracked off in the ice storm. 6 hours of climbing trees and using a 10 foot electric pole saw. I haven’t been that tired in my upper body in many moons.

Monday evening Carrie, G&A, and I played the Holy Family in our church’s live nativity (one baby at a time). We had a good time and really enjoyed seeing many friends at the service.

Christmas day was great. Wonderful Panera holiday bread french toast for breakfast, ham with fixins for lunch, good time with Nana, Pop, Carrie and the kids, and 3.5 miles for dinner. Great run. No one else around, full moon hanging low in the clear sky and low 40’s with no wind. Great way to end a great day.

Merry Christmas to all and Happy New Year!