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Archive for October, 2007

“us going home”

We were riding in the van tonight and I happened to look back to see the boys holding hands and Sean quietly saying, “Baby Ben, us going home.” I love to see that childish contentment. And like Chris said, that pretty much sums up life itself. We hold each other’s hands and quietly remind each other “us going home.” It doesn’t get any simpler–or sweeter–than that.

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amusing anecdotes

Sean’s been cracking me up lately. Here’s just a sampling of why, although imagine them spoken in 2-year-old language:

SEAN: I like [whatever]
US: Me too.
SEAN: Yeah, me three.

BEN: Waaah! Waaah! Waaah!
SEAN: Calm down, calm down! It’s okay, calm down!

US (putting Sean to bed): Give me your cup and I’ll go fill it up.
SEAN: Mommy, get me big boy water, please! (He means water from the bathroom sink–why it’s called big boy water, we have no idea.)

SEAN (with a cheap metal nutcracker in his hand that basically consists of two metal rods hinged together, and Ben sitting attentively beside him): Baby Ben, let me clip your fingernails. Sit still! Just a few more! You’re doing good! Almost done!

SEAN (after leaving the pediatrician’s office): I like Dr. PAX!
ME: I do too. Why do you like Dr. Plax?
SEAN: Dr. PAX plays with me!

ME: Sean, do you want a sandwich for lunch?
SEAN: Yeah.
ME: What kind of sandwich do you want?
SEAN: Um, Ovaltine sandwich!

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still built tough

We joked when Ben was first born about how we could take the Ford motto “Built Tough” and use it for Ben. That still applies. I took him for his one-year appointment yesterday and he was 31.5″ tall and weighed 25 lbs. 9 oz. It won’t be long and he’ll be the one knocking Sean over, instead of the other way around.

Oh, and after 3 shots in one leg, his response was nothing more than a few leg shakes and a look at the doctor like, “What’d you do that for?” Not even a whimper came out of his mouth. Like I said–built tough.

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ben. is. one.

Baby Ben – Day 2

One year ago today, our little Benjamin Jude made his grand entrance. One year. Already. Where in the world did it go? I feel like I blinked a few blinks, slept a few sleeps, and then–poof–it was gone. Time’s not supposed to go that fast, not when little ones are involved. Already I find myself looking back and wishing that I had held him more and cherished him longer, not because I don’t think I did enough, but because it was over all too soon. And I’m longing for just a little bit more of the baby-ness from my Baby Ben.

I’ve been looking back through pictures of little Ben throughout the day, remembering all kinds of little things from all of his little stages. It’s been interesting to me in my short experience as a parent to realize just how much of life is all about milestones, and the fact that they never end. You achieve one, then go on to the next one, and so on and so forth for the rest of your life. Everyone does it–it’s part of being human. And yet despite how simply ordinary it really is for the entire human race, we still cheer each other on and celebrate each other’s little accomplishments…even the babies’. And I pray the day never comes when I fail to recognize even the smallest little achievement in my children’s lives, for it’s those little things that make up life itself. And that is always, most definitely, worth remembering.

So here’s to remembering my little Benjamin as he turns one. Remembering that he’s already walking everywhere like a pro, even stopping to pick something up and going on, or standing up in the middle of the floor by himself and taking off; remembering that he still only has six teeth, which doesn’t do much for him in the eating category; remembering that he still dances and moves his little body everytime he hears music; remembering that, when prompted, he’ll blow kisses, give kisses, sign “touchdown” or “light” or “more” or “bye bye” or “eat”; remembering that he will start doing the hand motions to “The Wise Man’s House” when he hears the song; remembering that he loves to make people laugh, and will do something over and over again to make it happen; remembering that he screaches anytime he’s frustrated, impatient, annoyed or stuck; remembering that his version of peek-a-boo is to put one hand anywhere on his head (for instance, on his ear), wait for someone to say “Where’s Ben?” and then he’ll giggle with glee when he takes his hand off; remembering that he’s already initiating playing “catch” with whoever’s willing; remembering that he still likes to be held and cuddled and loved; and most of all, remembering that the fun is just beginning.

The last year with Ben has been wonderful, and I do wish it hadn’t gone quite so fast. But on the other hand, the little guy’s becoming such a sweet and fun little toddler, that I can’t help but look forward to where he’s going to lead us. And, yes, I really think he’s going to lead us places. Like to the emergency room, for instance. I’m afraid we already have him pegged as our ornery and mischeivous little rugrat. We may be wrong, and we have the right to change our minds as the years go on, but for now, I’m content to believe that fun, fun times are ahead with this little guy, and we’re quite looking forward to it.

Happy 1st birthday, Baby Ben! We love you.

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so true

I’m a quotation freak. Here’s my latest find:

“If we can only figure out that each of us can do little things with great passion, the whole world would change. You don’t have to expect change for billions. But we all have a family. I’ve learned that the way you do anything is the way you do everything.” -Andrew Cherng (owner of Panda Express)

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I have a secret: I turned 29 on September 21st. There, I said it. I’ve been trying to come to grips with it for over a week now, and I think the reality has finally sunk in. I’m not usually one to get caught up in the “Oh, no, I’m a year older and trying to deny it!” hysteria, but this year’s birthday kind of got to me. I won’t pretend that every other birthday hasn’t gotten to me–milestones of any kind always do, they always have. I remember sitting on the top step in the house on Hood Street silently bawling my eyes out as Jonathan talked about his plans for life after graduation. I all of a sudden knew at that moment that life would never be the same again–he would leave, then Jeremy, then me, then Joanna. We would go our separate ways, start our own lives, grow old, and start the cycle all over again with our own families. I saw it all there on that stair step. And I have that same cycle-of-life feeling at every little milestone, knowing that in at least some small way, life will never be the same again. So, yeah, birthdays almost always get to me.

But another part of it this year was knowing that I’m now on the edge of 30, with just one more year left of being a 20-something. And even though I don’t feel old, that fact alone makes me seem old. 30’s always seemed old to me. I mean, I remember when my parents were in their 30’s. It’s just always been the beginning of “oldness” and now that I’m approaching it I’m realizing that it’s really not. I’m having to change my longstanding perception of 30 and beyond.

And yet another part of my lack of enthusiasm for my birthday this year was because we weren’t really able to celebrate our birthdays this month. I’m not complaining–we don’t usually do much for our birthdays anyways–but we do usually try to do something. We just weren’t able to this year; outside stuff just lined up to prevent it from happening at the appropriate time, and we haven’t had an opportunity to plan anything since.

So, after experiencing a good but fairly normal birthday, I awoke on September 22nd trying to acknowledge the fact that I really was 29, that my baby really was 11 months old, and that life goes on. And it was in the middle of this mindset that I came into the living room and found an FTD florist box waiting for me. Weird, yes, but whatever. Maybe Mom and Dad sent me flowers? Who knows.

I opened the box and found that my longtime friend, Beth, had not only remembered my birthday, but as is so typical of her, had gone above and beyond the average act of friendship and sent 18 of these beauties in celebration of the day:


Only an old friend could sense the need without actually knowing of it. My gratitude goes beyond words, Beth. I thank God for your presence in my life and I’ll always think of you when I think of my 29th birthday.

And that was just the beginning of September 22nd. That afternoon we went to celebrate as two of our friends vowed to become one. And I was reminded of why I love weddings, and especially why I loved my wedding. It’s more than just the love and the joy that comes from it–it’s the hope. Hope that together two people can create a better life for each other than they would apart. Hope that together they can create a better world to live in than they would apart. I live for that hope, and I love celebrating with people who are determined to make that hope a reality. Congratulations, Chris and Paula. May you make each other and the world around you a better place as you become one.


So here I am, a week and a half after the day, and I can honestly say I’m content with 29. With good friends, family, and the hope of love, life is most definitely worth living. 30’s coming? Bring it on. This year will be the best one yet.

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