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Sunday, December 27, 2009

We miss Mommy....

Ohhhhhhh do we miss Mommy.

Explanation...Kim has been gone since Saturday morning to take a quick trip to Florida to visit her ailing Grandfather and it was decided that the quick trip might be a bit of a test for Reese that we didn't really care to try. So....I stayed home. Whew....

Don't get me wrong, Reese has been an absolute joy all weekend but she is so very constant now....meaning, you can't even go to the bathroom without bringing her along to make sure she doesn't pull the TV down on top of her head. Let's begin with Saturday....

A weepy Kim takes off and gives me a kiss...I made her step out of the kitchen so Reese couldn't see her for MY sake when they left. Reese didn't realize anything had happened for about 10 minutes and then she crawls back into the Living room looking for Mumamamamaamama. No crying, no fits...just a little indecision about the whole thing but Daddy is here so that made it ok. I start by surveying the toyland before me and decide that boxes need opening and organization must begin in earnest. Reese proceeds to get right between my legs as I sit on the couch opening boxes that must be mandated by our government for the safety of our children and the torment of all parents. You can't even get into a Tickle Me Elmo without having wire cutters to cut these damn gray wires that are wrapped around poor Elmo's throat and then tied in some sadistic knot around this piece of plastic in the back. This is only after you cut open the sandwiched cardboard that is taped with NASA grade shuttle tape so as to prevent the in store removal of the aforementioned Elmo OR to prevent ever playing with the doll once one gets it home.

I think I opened about 10 major boxes with varying degrees of torment designed by someone who must be demon possessed. Publish this persons name...and I will do horrible things to them.

Reese plays for a while....time to eat. I plan the food, lay out the bottle, we're ready to go. Reese sits and is ready to eat.....and now we have flying Reesie pie. Not really but she flails her hands when anything gets in front of her thereby causing Apples and Prunes to go all over her face, PJs, and hair. Great. Clean up what I can, push through the meal while holding her hands down in a weak attempt at a straight jacket and then strip the baby to Shout out the stain. I change the diaper, put the little one in a new set of PJs (we're not going anywhere Saturday so we're dressing lazy) Shout the stain. Play for a bit, get to 10am....NAP TIME!!!!!!!

Oh thank you Jesus...Nap time. I love Nap time. She literally falls asleep in my arms with no fuss and I sit her in her little swing. IMMEDIATELY the phone rings. It's no one. Some damn telemarketer - that is breaking the law since we are on the no-call list - so I hang up. Then folks start calling to check on me......Hey...Reese is sleeping.....oh....uh....well, yeah...not anymore. Maybe thirty minutes if I was lucky. I didn't even have time to wash bottles or prep anything. No time to poop, no time to grab clothes, no time to do anything but breath for a minute and talk on the phone or dive on the phone like it was a live grenade anytime someone called.

I eat cookies for lunch. Yeah, I could have warmed up chili but I'm on the move. I finally start getting some stuff done around mid-day and Reese is in a little bit of a play mode so I can move about the house without my shadow. I wash bottles, clothes, fold clothes, open toys, put toys together, watch a minute of TV....then feed. Finally around 3pm Reese got ready for one heck of a nap. She slept for an hour and a half and I made it happen during that time. Ran the trash out to the can, used the can, made the bed, got all of the clothes down to wash, I mean I made it happen. Then Lance calls and asks if I would like to join them for dinner at Taco Mac....SURE!!!! I gets me out of the house. Yeah, yeah, It's a pain to do this by yourself but its worth it because you're OUT!

Reese wakes up, I alter the feeding schedule a little, we arrive at Taco Mac and she performs flawlessly. we had a good meal and I decide to venture off to BabiesRUs for some cabinet latches. I get there and decided not to bring in the buggy cover that we have....I'll just hold her.

I - one - forget that BabiesRUs is like an oven all the time. Two, that I'm heavily dressed (for BabiesRUs anyway). Three - that Reese is not the best at holding still, and four - that I have no idea what I REALLY need. After the amazing sauna / bicep workout at BRU, I get Reese back in the car....declare that I will NEVER do that again and move on home. (Buggies are your friend and the buggy cover is not that much of an issue.) And if anyone knows management at BRU...please tell them that pregnant women and dads frequent their stores and do NOT appreciate the heat set at 400 de-freaking-grees.

That folks, is just Saturday.......Sunday was a repeat except Daddy didn't take a bath. Reese wouldn't allow that. Daddy didn't use the bathroom in private....not even ONCE. My parents came by and aided with some extra eyes to make sure our little daredevil didn't try to jump off the couch. Reese took the shit of a lifetime...assplosion out onto the PJs, up the back and STUNK like dammit. She took a horrible nap late in the day and while she was excellent for my parents - she was awful once they left. She went into a DEFCON 4 whine, scream, spit, cry, mini tantrum. I think she was tired, hungry and just generally pissed but I swear I heard her coming into the kitchen saying mumamamamamamama. Yes Reesie...I know. I miss Mumamamama as well baby. Thank GOD she is coming home on Monday because she is sorely missed and appreciated.

I travel a decent amount and weekday trips are a sight different than the weekend. You feel trapped almost on the weekend. You need to get outside and move around...see other people. I do anyway. We usually go pretty hard but when its you....and only you....getting out makes less sense than you'd think it would. It's truly been a pleasure being Reese's only comfort or the past two days and she has really clung to me all weekend and I love that....but let me say to my are truly the glue that keeps this house together.

I'll never live up to the standard that you deserve and you still love me despite that. All my flaws...all my weaknesses....and you love me more and more every day. I'll never comprehend that but I guess I should just learn to appreciate it more and give back as much as I can to you.

Moms kick ass. And we miss our Kimmy/Mommy.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Reese's 1st Christmas.....


What an amazing Christmas....Everyone was so good to our new family and Reese just loves all of her new stuff. We had really sort of held out on her with toys to this point but she was really needing a fresh supply of goodies and Christmas came at just the right time.

This weekend is going to be interesting because its just gonna be Reese and Daddy. Kim is going down to Florida to see her Grandpa since he isn't in good health so I'll be holding down the fort with little bit. I've managed weekdays before but never an entire weekend on my own so this will be interesting. I have tons of cleaning up to do and Reese has a fresh pile of toys so we'll see what I can accomplish for the next several days.

So this is it....Christmas came and went today and the world moves on again starting at 6am....super saver discounts start at your local Wal-mart. All of that preparation since for the perfect gift, asking for ideas, prepping the house for the holidays, sending out the cards, taking the pictures, going to see Santa, cooking, cleaning.....the month just flew by and now Christmas Day has come...and is now gone. Christmas night has always been a sad one for me because I love this time of year and tonight is essentially the end. Oh, I get over it and move on but the radio stations kill the Christmas music immediately and decorations start coming down as well. It just happens too quick. Too easily forgotten and on to the next thing....

It's easy to see why Kim and I will remember this Christmas forever since it was Reese's first. The pictures above will hold these days in lasting memories and we'll always carry this Christmas with us.

Mommy and Daddy love you Reese....This is just the beginning of many, many more to come. We love you more than you'll ever know and hope that every Christmas is just as special to you as it is to us.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas....

Little Reese has already gone to bed tonight....She's dead tired and just beat from a day full of activities prepping for the family we had over tonight for Christmas Eve chili.

We know that in the years to come Reese will not go to bed so easily on Christmas Eve and watching her tonight just made my heart swell with pride in anticipation of those years to come. Kim and I have truly been blessed by this little girl and do not deserve God's blessings.....but in this case, we'll take it...No questions asked.

Merry Christmas everyone....Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Cookie time....

So I'm not the cook in the house. I grill and some other minor "stuff" but Christmas brings out the Martha Stewart in me and I make cookies. Not just cut the wrapper cookies....Real, home made, from real ingredients cookies. All of this.....

Becomes this....

That then becomes this.....

 and this....

I'm not saying....I'm just saying. I'll dork up the spelling but these are called Neiman Marcus cookies and there is a story behind them about a lady having a cookie at the store, she loved it and asked if there was a recipe available and they said that it would be Two fifty...thinking $2.50 she agreed but later found out that she was charged $250.00 for the recipe. She vowed revenge and spread the recipe far and wide.

Now I don't know if this is a true story but it does make a damn fine cookie. I wouldn't pay $250.00 for the recipe but it makes enough cookies that you could sell them all and make the money right back. 

Tomorrow....THE BATHROOM IS FINALLY DONE. Pics forthcoming.

Monday, December 21, 2009


The email that I posted wasn't really a good update on the fam so I thought I would sort of add to the life and times of AK&R.

Reese was a gem all weekend. She is becoming so interactive and just such a pleasure to be around. She is learning all the time, laughing, investigating, looking, playing....she is just an amazing little girl and she's so much fun. Even better...she loves to shop. Well....let me be a little clearer about that last sentence....she sleeps very well while we're out. Our Saturday started with some biscuits and we got cleaned up and presentable...then headed out to the Mall of all places. The last Saturday before Christmas and Kim and I are waltzing into the lion's den. Are we crazy?

Reese got in her B.O.B. stroller, got comfortable, and in about 10 minutes...was the head baby in charge of Sleepytown. We hit tons of shops in the mall and then got chow and then shopped some more and the entire time Reese was amazing. Check her out chilin' in her new Columbia jacket from Papa and Gramma.

Then Sunday we stayed close to the house and cleaned up the compound a little bit in a slow, week long progression toward Christmas Eve dinner that we normally host. We're also planning our shopping for the Million Dollar cookie-fest that ADAM ends up doing without the assistance of his lovely wife. She tires of the fun after about 10 batches....and so do I. There will probably be a cookie post later on in the week so you can ogle my cookie goodness.

Between now and then, Reese is smiling for Mommy and Daddy....

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A great article for the season....

I received this email from my parents and as I read it...I wanted to put this in our blog to remember it forever....It's a great story for this week. 

Do You See Him?
by Max Lucado

IT’S CHRISTMAS NIGHT. THE HOUSE IS QUIET. Even the crackle is gone from the fireplace. The last of the carolers appeared on the ten o’clock news. The last of the apple pie was eaten by my brother-in-law. And the last of the Christmas albums have been stored away having dutifully performed their annual rendition of chestnuts, white Christmases, and red-nosed reindeers.
It’s Christmas night.
The midnight hour has chimed and I should be asleep, but I’m awake. I’m kept awake by one stunning thought. The world was different this week. It was temporarily transformed.
The magical dust of Christmas glittered on the cheeks of humanity ever so briefly, reminding us of what is worth having and what we were intended to be. We forgot our compulsion with winning, wooing, and warring. We put away our ladders and ledgers, we hung up our stopwatches and weapons. We stepped off our race tracks and roller coasters and looked outward toward the star of Bethlehem.
It’s the season to be jolly because, more than at any other time, we think of him. More than in any other season, his name is on our lips.
And the result?
For a few precious hours, he is beheld. Christ the Lord. Those who pass the year without seeing him, suddenly see him. People who have been accustomed to using his name in vain, pause to use it in praise. Eyes, now free of the blinders of self, marvel at his majesty.
All of a sudden he’s everywhere.
In the grin of the policeman as he drives the paddy wagon full of presents to the orphanage.
In the twinkle in the eyes of the Taiwanese waiter as he tells of his upcoming Christmas trip to see his children.
In the emotion of the father who is too thankful to finish the dinner table prayer.
He’s in the tears of the mother as she welcomes home her son from overseas.
He’s in the heart of the man who spent Christmas morning on skid row giving away cold baloney sandwiches and warm wishes.
And he’s in the solemn silence of the crowd of shopping mall shoppers as the elementary school chorus sings “Away in a Manger.”
Emmanuel. He is with us. God came near.
It’s Christmas night. In a few hours the cleanup will begin—lights will come down, trees will be thrown out. Size 36 will be exchanged for size 40, eggnog will be on sale for half price. Soon life will be normal again. December’s generosity will become January’s payments and the magic will begin to fade.
But for the moment, the magic is still in the air. Maybe that’s why I’m still awake. I want to savor the spirit just a bit more. I want to pray that those who beheld him today will look for him next August. And I can’t help but linger on one fanciful thought: If he can do so much with such timid prayers lamely offered in December, how much more could he do if we thought of him every day?
From God Came Near
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 1987) Max Lucado

Oh Happy Day!!!!!!!!!

It's Saturday!!!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Trip to see Santa....

So Reese's first trip to see Santa was tonight....

It looks worse than it was. She was so calm in line. She smiled and giggled the whole time. Then...the drop off. Kim dropped her in Santa's lap and her little face squished up with disapproval and we were off to the races.

Kim ended up rescuing little bit shortly but the funny thing was the Reese just smiled like crazy looking back at Santa. Figures....Oh well. You can't always get that perfect picture but this is close enough.

We love Reese so much and tonight...while not all that necessary in terms of making Reese over joyed at seeing Santa...was a memory that will live forever in our minds. Now, time for a little shameful have to go check out our other blog - for the HORRENDOUS picture of a morning wake up call from the other day. Reese is going to kill us when she knows better. Love ya squirt.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Home made salsa...


I'll fess up to the fact that I made two versions. Hot and Mild. I always make my salsa way too hot for everyone else but just right for me. Now...with the Hot version, I think I've made it a little too hot for my liking. Good Lord my sinuses are clear with just a small taste.

This all goes to work for our week long chow-fest and I'll be hurting Wednesday night because of it. But its oh so good!

Next subject....Where has this month gone? We used to sit back and sort of laugh at all of the talk about how stressful the holidays are and I'm not saying we're stressed but I think we took on more than we should have with Reese's Baptism early this month, new cards, shopping, decorating, work, and on, and see the cycle? Silly stuff that really isn't important but its made important in our minds because it's Christmas.

For example...we are taking Reese to see Santa Claus Wednesday night. It's a photo op. That's it. She isn't going to settle in with the old man and share her wish list. She isn't even going to remember him next year so that she might not be terrified of him. It's for us...But what low life parent wouldn't take their kid to Santa? Those are not our words...its more of mindset amongst us parents. It's more like memory building and laying groundwork for traditions.....yeah...that's it. And you know what, I'm ok with that but December should come equipped with 45 days so that you can cram everything in.

The countdown is on and I have so much more to do. Where is the pause button?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

8 1/2 month update...

So we were on a regular kick of taking the "birthday" pic and then updating the status of Reese on a monthly basis. Then the croup entered our lives....and Christmas...and get the idea.

But rather than wait until December 27th to take another pic for the 9 month post, we decided that an 8 1/2 month update was better than no update at all. Oddly enough, all of her 11/27 pics were sicky pics but today she was actually running a pretty substantial fever today so she had rosie cheeks today. On that subject...we're sort of baffled by this fever. She had a 100.9 fever but no signs of anything. She was a little grumpy and seemed to be a little needy-er than normal but nothing major. The nurse line just told us to watch it and monitor the situation but she should be fine. is the 8.5 month collage:

Her list of accomplishments include:
  • Continues to sleep through the night but wakes up awfully early on the weekend.....6:30 - 6:45a
  • She is eating all types of baby food but doesn't really care for Green Beans and can pass on Peas too.
  • She takes a 6oz bottle in the morning then drinks 4 more 5oz bottles through the day for a total of 26oz of formula.
  • During three of the midday feedings, she eats a 3.5oz baby food so she is getting 10.5oz of baby food daily.
  • She is crawling EVERYWHERE. 
  • She pulls up on furniture and can finally kneel back down when she wants to move on. 
  • She sits up perfectly and is moving from side to side when she sits.
  • Reese recognizes her name now and turns quickly toward you when you call her.
  • She understands No.....but doesn't always comply.
  • She loves electrical outlets.
  • She loves the little covers for the electrical outlets.
  • Reese has no fear of falling off of anything. She will roll to the edge of the bed without hesitation.
  • She is jabbering pretty well now with Mamamamama, Dadadadadadaa, Nanananananana, and mrwawaaaaaaaaa being some of her favorite words.
  • Reese loves to watch Baxter on the deck. She will SCREAM with excitement when Bax comes up.
  • She just moved (at 8.5 months) to the big girl tub in our Master Bath....because our hardwood floors couldn't soak up any more water from bath time.
  • Her hair is getting wilder.
  • She only has two teeth but it seems like some top teeth are ready to poke through.
  • She still naps twice each day for roughly an hour each time.
  • She loves her new baby sitter Sherry.
  • Reese has to have something touching her face to sleep "well".
  • She smells/sniffs/feels her shirt sleeve as a comfort mechanism.
  • Smiles like crazy....
  • And loves her mommy.

There are tons of other things that she is doing but this pretty well hits the high spots.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Daddy's home...

I don't mind travel...but I don't particularly care to travel around the holidays and I've just completed my last run for the better part of the month and I'm REEEEEAAAAAL happy about being back home.

Tonight was a bath night for Reese and she has been in a great mood....I like to think its because Daddy is home but she's a pretty happy girl regardless.

Speaking of bath....I think we've finally rounded the corner with Reese and will be giving her a bath upstairs now. We tried it in the spare bath but that just stunk. The room is small and it just didn't work. So we are going to try to do this in the Master bath since we have some room in there and the tub is big. Little bit was washing the floors for us tonight with all of the splashing in the sink and we just decided that things need to change a little...or the floors will begin buckling.

And is our little one playing with her tree lights in the office. My parents bought her a little tree and we've decorated it with some lights that Reese thinks are hers.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Today Kim and I committed to raising our daughter in a home filled with faith and to teach her about God until she is able to understand the choices she will make on her own.....oh my Lord...that's a tall order.

I can barely keep up with my own issues much less ensure that Reese is on the straight and narrow but that's what we agreed to do. In good times and bad...Reese is the priority and her faith should mirror ours. She has been dedicated to the family of faith and the about that. Today was the first time that we ventured into church with Reese and even more to the point, the first time back to Sam Jones Methodist since we moved more than two years ago. It was good to get back there. That church is such a great place and the people are just incredibly nice but I would have to admit that there was a sense of shame on my part that we've been so far removed from church.

It's just too easy to stay home. We don't sleep in anymore on Sunday (Reese wakes up REALLY early for the weekend) and we just haven't made the commitment to start going again....pretty weak excuse, I know, but that's what we've been doing.We need to find something close to home but we're just not feeling the same vibe that our old church produced.

If you know me any at all, you'll learn (or come to learn) that I'm a somewhat emotional how I manned that up a little? So having said that, today was an awesome experience for a brand new Daddy. I witnessed the first of many milestones in my baby girl's life. As Bill walked into the crowd with my little girl...with her smiling the whole way...I felt something so special for Reese. I was proud of her...proud of what Kim and I have been able to put together in a few short months. Proud of this little girl that was being claimed by the church as one of their own. I have to tell you....being a parent is challenging. She tests us everyday. It strains our (Kim and I) relationship sometimes and bends the levels of what we WANT to do versus what we NEED to do.....but I think that God rewards that stress with moments like today.

I'm no saint...not even close. But I'm still able to feel God pulling at my heart. Today was a great day...Mommy and Daddy love you Reese. We love you very, very much.


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Saturday morning during the Holidays...


Snow in December...

It's pretty amazing for us...and not much of a big deal for anyone that lives north of Tennessee but believe it or not, we got a little snow this morning.

You can't really see the snow falling here but against the house its tough. Our Saturday tradition of breakfast with Family Tradition continued, snow or not, and you can see things better here.

So I head home with hot bacon biscuits and snow falling setting the stage for an awesome holiday season. I love cold weather at Christmas time.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas cards have been ordered....

Now we just have to mail them when they get here. And let me just point out that this little process has been a new one for Kimmy and myself.

Never in my life have I put so much pressure on myself to "create" something unique yet practical. Don't fit into the normal mold but...don't spend a fortune on the baby's first Christmas card by trying to do something different. Having said all of that, we're not the most creative folks on the block but Snapfish makes things so stinking easy. We use pretty simple web tools around here...Picasa, Blurb, and now Snapfish. I'd love to say that we're all techy and use Photoshop at its highest level but we're not. I need to take a class and then I might prefer it but for now - call me a simpleton.

On a health news front...we may be pulling out of the doldrums of sickness. ((at least we hope!)) Reese hasn't had such a runny nose over the past day or so. She still wakes up with crud in her throat and nose but she coughs through that in short order especially with the help of a bottle. On an even better front...Our new babysitter seems to be working out very well. Reese hasn't whined once when Kim dropped her off which was a concern at the beginning and Sherry seems very good with her. I also think that the other baby being there is allowing some interaction that will be good for Reese long term. So good.

Finally, we're prepping for a big weekend around here. SEC Championship, Baby dedication/Baptism/Christening....whatever your poison, and folks coming over in droves after church. I think we'll be ready for a nap on Sunday afternoon.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Croopy poopy....

It's official. She has the croop.

I don't really know what the croop is or if I'm even spelling it correctly but its a real virus and it results in a hell of a mean cough for our little one. Sometimes it sounds "dry" and just rough. Other times it sounds like she could cough up a ton of crap with rattles coming from her chest. She has two days worth of meds which seems like a lite dose but a couple folks at work seem to have experience with the croop and they say that's all it takes. For Reese's sake...I hope that's all it takes.

We've sucked out her nose with saline solution and we've ended up getting some aloe based tissues as well because we were just wearing out her nose with the stuff we had on hand. AND to top it all off....she didn' go to her new babysitter today because of this ick so she'll be tested in a new environment Tuesday so please pray that little bit adjusts quickly and Mommy being out of sight means that she will be out of mind.

Enjoy a sicky pic...

An unsure pic....

And a cutie pic.....

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sick baby and a first for Kim....

Reese has been showing signs of not feeling 100% for a couple days now....and today it hit pretty hard. Runny nose, a horrible croopy sounding cough, chest congestion...but oddly enough no fever. We've done the saline mist deal with her - she hates. We've wiped her poor little nose and mouth so much that both are flaming red - she hates. Her breathing is labored and we start the whole cycle over again. She's dead tired and you can just see that she is miserable. I think that we've decided another trip to the doctor is in order in the morning and she may very well be missing her first day at her new babysitter.

Right now, Kim has Pooks in her arms just holding her close and trying to make her feel better. She was so tired during the bath tonight that she could barely keep her eyes open. But through it all just like always...she's been a trooper. Handling everything like a champ despite obviously feeling like dirt. We love our little baby and hate that she's sick.

Despite a sick babe....we decorated the house yesterday and today for Christmas. Inside and out are ready for Christmas joy and we're kind of glad that's over. We love the decorations but putting them up and taking them down are a chore. Reese chipped in how she could....and no...the strand that she is holding is NOT plugged in obviously but she is overseeing a pile of DEAD lights.

We put up some of Reese's new ornaments for the tree and tried to get some pics of her in front of them but it was a weak attempt...She was more interested in holding this plastic tree.

One of the things that did happen today was something that I've never heard in my 14 Christmas' with Kim. She told me to go buy new lights. It was like the Christmas light Gods frowned upon us this morning and nearly every strand we touched had issues. Some of these lights were nearly 10 years old - so I'm not bothered - other strands were probably new last year but we ditched the whole load. Every light we have got a brand new replacement this morning. Usually, Kim threatens me with beatings and punishment beyond words for buying lights. This morning at the Wal-Mart I picked out lights while some cheeseball Santa readied himself for photos with kiddies that don't know any better. Everyone knows that the Phipps Plaza Santa is the real Santa. Duh....

And so the last thing to ponder is a five day weekend gone....

Thanksgiving sort of sneaked in and out the door on me. It was an amazing first Thanksgiving for Reese and we had such a good time from eating and shopping to decorating and wiping noses. I wish we could start over and do it again. Spending time at home and with all of our families is like blinking and the day is over. It really stinks but we'll have a ton of time during Christmas so I'm looking forward to that. We're also looking forward to Reese's baptism next Sunday and hoping that she does well during service. Cross your fingers.

Good night - and pray we get some sleep with a sick baby. I imagine she'll spend some time in our bed just to be close to us.