Monday, August 31, 2009

JB turns 28!


I can't believe my youngest sibling is now 28! We are getting so old! It seems like only yesterday we were exploring around the creek by our house. John and I always had a blast together as kids and I have such a special love for my bubs! He is one of the best men I have ever known! He is the most giving, thoughtful, genuine, honest, and reverent man of God and anyone who knows him sees Christ's love shining through him! He always used to tell me to "spread the Love" whenever we were leaving and saying our goodbyes. Gosh, I love that guy! :)
The family got together this weekend for John's birthday, we all call him J.B. because his middle name is Brooker. Anyway, he is having a BBQ with all his buddies next weekend for his actual party, but the family had their own little special dinner at Adam and Chandra's this past weekend. We had a blast and it was so fun to see the cousins, Elijah and Noah, play together! Pretty soon we will have another little cousin since Chandra is expecting her second around mid April 2010! We are hoping we will get a girl in this family soon! :)
Mom and Dad


JB and I

Adam spooning the leftover cheesecake off the table to eat it!


Chandra cutting the cheeseblob. (The cheesecake was supposed to be in the fridge for 24 hours, but only got 8 hours and therefore turned into a blob when we tried to cut it. But, it was a DELICIOUS blob none the less!)

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Mom and Dad are going to help get JB a cat that he is wanting, Tonkinese I believe...although I have know idea how to spell that. So, his birthday card was certainly fitting! :)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Is it Normal?


Is it normal for a 3 month old to sleep for hours with his arms in the air? Seems like his muscles would RELAX at some point, doesn't it? It looks a bit strange to me, but hey, he could be praising God in his dreams or something; maybe he's saying "Hallelujah, Praise the Lord"! :) Kinda looks like it! :)





It's these kind of strange, random things that make being a parent so much fun! You just never know what your kids are going to do, come up with, or say! Is there a day that goes by with a kid where you don't laugh out loud?
NO!
They bring so much joy into our lives!
ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh....
Don't you just LOVE IT?!!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Monique's Visit

An old student of mine came to visit us this last week/weekend and we had a blast! I taught Monique in a Freshman Honors English class 6 years ago in California. We lived close to one another so we would take Monique to school most days and we developed a special relationship over the years. She is an amazing woman and is now about to start her 3rd year at Stanford in the fall!
She is a natural with kiddos and we had so much fun romping around Austin with the boys! While she was in town we took the boys swimming, went on a "Duck tour" through Lake Austin and the downtown area, went on a "Ghost tour" late at night around all the old buildings in Austin, saw Dirty Dancing outside under the stars downtown with a 3 course meal included courtesy of Alamo Drafthouse, had a wonderful breakfast at Magnolia Cafe, dinner at Hula Hut, and lots of chat time around the house! Thanks for making the trek out here, Monique! We love you!

Here is Monique and Joaquin hanging out on the couch.

This was at the end of the Ghost tour at the Driskel. They had these miniature chairs and chaise lounge in the foyer. It was too good of a photo op. to pass up! (Elijah thought the chairs were so much fun, but by that time he was exhausted and a bit loopy!)

Here are the tiny guys on the tiny furniture.


Not so tiny...Elijah crawled up on this rocking chair outside the Moonshine Bar and Grill, where we started our Ghost tour. Lots of crazy stories about that place! It has been there forever!



This was after watching Dirty Dancing on the outdoor screen outside of Whole Foods. Is it horrible that I let my 1 year old watch that? (Not that he stayed still to watch much of it anyway...he had more fun on the nearby playground.)


Thanks for visiting, Monique! We look forward to next summer and getting more things crossed off our "list". :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Hide And Go Seek

Recently Elijah has really gotten into the old favorite kid game, Hide and Go Seek. He actually finds really creative places to hide, which freaks me out a little bit because it is hard to find him sometimes. (Although, he doesn't know how to be quiet when he finds his hiding spot yet, so that helps me.) I decided to take my camera with me during this morning's game and these were the two spots where I found him...

1.) Hiding between all our pillows on the bed I just made...

2.) In our little pug dog, Joni's crate in the laundry room! (Somehow he managed to pull the crate out in the middle of the room, open the gate, drag the bedding out and crawl inside! Frightening, I know!)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Mom and Dad K

This past week Mom and Dad K came to visit us from California! It was their first chance to meet Joaquin, so we were excited to have them here! We had a blast all being together and the boys loved spending time with their Gamma and Gampa! Here are a few of the fun memories:


Gampa is so good with babies.
Joaquin: "My Grampa is this guy? I want a DNA test!"

Joaquin: "...yeah, and then this huge jaguar jumped out of the bushes like this..."



Joaquin: "No need to be scared, Gampa."

And then Joaquin actually ended up falling asleep in Gampa's arms!

Like father, like son. Here are all my precious boys!


Elijah got ahold of some of my old sunglasses. He thought he looked super cool, and well... I thought he did too! :)


My little man!


Elijah's recent discovery is the hose. He loves to play with it while it's filling up his baby pool. Oh, and Joni loves it too! :)


Gamma gave Ian and I an awesome date night treat and volunteered to watch the boys for us! We headed over to the Alamo Drafthouse for dinner and a movie. It was wonderful! Thank you mom! You are soooooooo good to us!



Floating!


Aren't they precious? Ian is such a great daddy!


Daddy was teaching Elijah how to blow bubbles.



Learning how to float...


Gamma taught Elijah how to hold his breath when his head goes under the water! At first he wasn't to excited about it, but after a while he would come up out of the water with a smile or even a giggle!



Elijah sure did have a great buddy this past week! He loved playing with Gamma 24-7! He did not want to go down for nap time because he was afraid he would miss out on Gamma time!


Here is the fam' in the pool!


Gampa was a wonderful teacher! Elijah loved getting thrown around in the water too!


This is what happens when Elijah decides to get in his baby pool then directly into the sandbox afterward! (this has pretty much become a morning ritual after we feed Joni)


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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hola!

Is their any better way to start your day than with this little sweetie on the pillow next to you? After I feed Joaquin in the morning he takes a nap on Ian's pillow since he has headed off to work. Of course, Daddy never leaves without saying hola to his little man. It is always precious...

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Saturday, August 1, 2009

Breath of Fresh Air




These two pictures represent: sanctuary; stealing away; self-embrace; a resuscitation of self...a gathering of my pieces.

If you look closely, Elijah is on the monitor asleep in his crib. Joaquin is floating away to dreamland in his vibrating swing, and this means mommy has time to exhale. :)

I had it on my to-do list to update the blog today and I planned on writing about the boys recent well-baby visits to the doctor, updating their growth stats and the like. However, after reading my daily devotional for today I changed my plans. I think it is time for a little needed personal reflection.

Really, I should do it more often—look at my own life—but, it seems that even my spare moments are focused on others (i.e. one of the 3 main guys in my life). But, the wonderful women writer, Sarah Ban Breathnach, in her book Simple Abundance, a Daybook of Comfort and Joy, reminded me to be still and listen deeply for a moment to know if my authentic self is following a “path with heart”. So, I decided I wanted to write a bit. Just get my own thoughts out on paper, or screen in this case, like I so often used to.

I used to be such a journal-er. Always finding solace in seeing my feelings in black ink. But over the years my need for that form of expression has seemed to slow. I’m not sure if it is being married and feeling like I have someone, more or less, to be my own sounding board of neurotic ideas, or if I just haven’t had the time….probably a little of both. But today, with Ian in California for the weekend, the kids asleep, I felt like writing.

I know I have said it before but motherhood and my current place in life gives me such a soft contentment. I feel more like myself than I ever have, although I hope that my SELF is always growing and changing, I am truly enjoying this section of “this trip” (as my father calls life).
I feel thankful. Grateful. Content, which is something I can remember praying for for a long time.

It seems that youth is so full of longing. There is just an underlying sensation of angst beneath the surface of everything. Emotions run frantic and seem to splay in every direction of your life.

But now, having reached the lip of 30, I feel like my inner self is in harmony with my outer self and that feels so good, so relaxing, so peace-giving, calming, joyful, and restful. A tangible heart-sigh.
I love being a wife, a mother, and a photographer. My desire to create is fulfilled by photography, cooking, and playing with my kids. My passion keeps me learning, reading, and traveling. I have dear friends and am connecting with old ones daily. There never seems to be a shortage of beauty around me. I love that mystery vine that the previous homeowners planted on our side fence. It has taken over one of the windows on the side of our living room wall and this time of year I see the bright orange blooms and vibrant green leaves every time I lay on my side of the bed with the door open in to the living room.

I’m learning to paint my every day the way I choose. I can see reality any way I want to. No one else has my life or my eyes. For, ”Each of us possesses an exquisite, extraordinary gift: the opportunity to give expression to God on earth through our everyday lives. When we choose to honor this priceless gift, we participate in the re-creation of the world.”

If you are reading this you are probably a part of my life in one way or another.

Thank you for playing your part. I so enjoy that you're on this "trip" with me!

OK, that’s it for today. I’m going to go hold my baby boy now.

But I’ll leave you with an inspiring word from the monk, Thich Nhat Hanh:
“Our own life is the instrument with which we experiment with truth.”

In genuine love and laughter,
Rachel