Sunday, November 30, 2008

What Thanksgiving Taught Us

1. Gideon loves Sweet Potatoes. We already knew they were one of his favorite baby foods, but he really likes the grown-up version with butter, brown sugar and marshmallows. I think he ate most of grandma's first helping. (Which was evident in his diaper all the next day, but that's a different story.)

2. We're definitely not ready for a dog. Jesse and Kelly brought their new bassett hound puppy to dinner and while we all enjoyed her, Travis and I decided that we definitely don't need a dog yet. Gideon was fascinated with her and would constantly chase her down and pound on her (lovingly of course.) But then when the dog was in a playful mood, she'd chase the munchkin down and jump on him and lick him to death. Even in his walker he wasn't safe and there's only so far to run in our house. So we won't be getting a dog anytime soon. (And also, the cat hissed and spit every time the puppy had the audacity to enter whatever room he was in. And I just don't need that kind of drama in my life right now.)

3. Getting the three of us dressed nicely and gathered for a family picture is easier said than done.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Day at the Beauty Shop

So y'all know how much the girls at the beauty shop adore Gideon, right? Well today we went to visit Aunt Jesse at work and he got his first hair cut. Okay so it wasn't so much a haircut as trimming the top just barely. Nothing on the sides or back though.

And then for fun, they gave him his first baby fauxhok. Cute huh?

Oh yeah, sorry I didn't get good pictures of his actual hair cutting. I had to try and hold his head very still just so she could trim it at all. And I know these pictures of the stylin' do aren't that great, but he wasn't really cooperating at this point.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Daddy's Birthday Party

Friday night we had the family over for chili and cornbread and some birthday cake.

Daddy's got a helper with his presents.

Someone definitely needed a bath after the party because he was very sticky!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Perks of Cheap Motel Living

When Travis arrived home last night and announced he had a surprise for me, I must say I was a little disappointed to find out that it was just six weeks worth of cheap motel amenities.

Next time honey, jewelry would be nice. ;)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

No, I didn't forget!

Happy Belated Birthday to our favorite husband and daddy!

(It was yesterday. Since he's out of town and we're not celebrating until the weekend, we figured Travis wouldn't be offended if we were a day late in posting. I honestly meant to do it yesterday, but never got to it.)

(Look at how little Gideon used to be! Wow he's so big now!)

5 reasons we're happy to have Travis:

1. He's hardworking

2. He's fiercely loyal

3. He has a great sense of humor

4. He's compassionate to those in need

5. He spoils us rotten (and we love it!)

Anyway, happy 37th birthday baby!

Oh Ye of Little Faith

To those doubters (my sister Shiloh included) who feared that my love for basketball would crush my desire to post pictures of my son, you are sorely mistaken. Why would I ever stop posting pictures and updates of the happiest, cutest most wonderful baby boy on the planet?

So without further ado, here are the happenings this week thus far.

Gideon decided he needed to climb into the toy basket at Nana's house.

And then he decided it might taste good.

Have I mentioned that he's an extremely happy (and very vocal) child? Check out the videos for more of this little escapade. You'll even get to hear Nana talking about his propensity for clumsiness since he's always on the go and seems to have no fear.

We discovered on Halloween (okay so Grandpa Darryl discovered on Halloween) that the munchkin LOVES suckers. Naturally he makes a huge mess, but it's pretty cute to watch him get so excited by it.

Gideon & Nana enjoy a treat together.

Another recent development: He won't stay still while being changed. He frequently escapes before I can even get a clean diaper on him, and he always escapes before we can redress him. So on Tuesday I just decided to let him be semi-naked for a few minutes. I was exhausted from trying to keep up with him.

Also, this is his special drawer at Nana's house. Forget the toy basket. Who needs that when you have antique egg beaters and plastic lids to play with.

Today I had help getting my floors clean. Do you know how hard it is to sweep when someone keeps wheeling through your piles of dust. What he was really after of course, was the broom. Not sure why it was so fascinating, but it was.

And that's the munchkin update from here for now.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Addiction - the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming, to such an extent that its cessation causes severe trauma.

Yes, I have an addiction. I acknowledge it. I admit it. I think I realized it somewhere between 4:00 & 4:30am when Idaho State and Hawaii were going into overtime. Why? I thought to myself? Why am I watching this game? Neither of these teams really matter to me. And this game really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things. I doubt we see either of those teams in the Big Dance come March. So why am I watching this?

The answer? Because it's College Basketball. And I can't not watch. Even when I don't care about the outcome of a game, even if I don't sit through an entire game, I'll check the scores and stats as often as possible. I have to know. I just have to know. Because that's the beauty of basketball. Anything can happen. A loss this early in the season can be devastating (See last year's Kentucky loss to Gardner-Webb) or it might not mean anything (2004 saw UNC losing to Santa Clara in their first game of the season. Not to worry though, you might remember UNC only lost one other game that season and they went on to become National Champs.)

Thanks to ESPN's 24 hour College Hoops Tip Off Marathon I've been able to completely binge on basketball today. It started at 10:00 last night. And when I got too tired to keep watching, I set the DVR to record and resumed watching first thing this morning. I justify to myself that knowledge is power. When March rolls around I want to be informed about everything that's happening in the basketball world. Is it such a crime that I'm keeping track of injured players this early in the season? Is it so bad that I taped four and half hours of Sports Center during the wee hours of the morning that was devoted to basketball? How awful is it that I know the name of next year's top freshman recruit and where he's committed to play? (His name is Xavier Henry and he's going to Memphis. FYI, though, Roy Williams & UNC landed the number 3 recruit for next year, power forward John Henson. But they've also managed to land #19 Dexter Strickland, #25 Leslie McDonald, #49 David Wear and his twin brother #50 Travis Wear. It all adds up to the best recruiting class for the 2009-2010 season. So all of you who were hoping that after the graduation of Tyler Hansbrough (and the probable departure of most of the rest of the team to the NBA next summer) that UNC would hit a slump and quietly go away for a few years, don't hold your breath. Didn't we learn after the 2005 season that UNC doesn't rebuild. They reload.)

But I digress. See I know this stuff because I've just spent 24 hours happily getting indoctrinated. I also know that the Big East is the most heavily loaded conference right now. And that Memphis is probably going to cruise through C-USA again. I know that Patrick Mills at St. Mary's is going to spoil a lot of fun for some big basketball schools because he can shoot the lights out. I know that Notre Dame's basketball team has a better shot of getting to the final four this year, than their football team has of having a winning season. I worry about the situation Tom Crean has to clean up at Indiana. (If the man can win 10 games this season they should give him a medal.) I'm thrilled that the Boilermakers of Purdue are going to be legitimate contenders this season (if only Grandpa Doc were still around to see it. Michigan State and Purdue at the top of the Big Ten. What an epic battle that will be.) I'm excited to see if Wake Forest can live up to the hype. And how long the Tar Heels can run with such a huge target on their backs. I have an obsessive desire to watch the entire season to see which player might be the biggest challenger to Hansbrough for Player of the Year. Stephen Curry at Davidson? Patty Mills at St. Marys? Blake Griffin at Oklahoma? Harangody at Notre Dame? Thabeet at UConn? I love the fact that it's all undecided at the moment. We have a fresh new season ahead of us to determine all of these things.

For most people, Thanksgiving week means football. For me, it means basketball tournaments! The Maui Invitational, Preseason NIT, Coaches Against Cancer, Great Alaska Shootout, the Las Vegas Invitational...and the list goes on and on. It's a chance to see basketball powerhouses, like UNC play teams like Chaminade. It's also exciting because it gives us the opportunity to preview potential tournament games. UConn vs. Duke or Notre Dame vs. Texas. And because it's basketball you never can tell which way it will work out. That's beauty of tournaments. If basketball were like BCS football, this year's champs, Kansas wouldn't even have played for they championship. They were ranked number 4, so they would have watched the game and played in some other consolation bowl. But since it's a one and done tournament play off, anything can (and usually does happen.)

But here I am babbling again. See, I told you, it's a sickness. Most of you would probably say I need help. But that's the thing, I don't want help. I still love my addiction. I'm sure there are other people out there like me. But I don't think they have a support group for us. But I don't know anyone else like me. Most of the people I know, even the college basketball fans, don't really start to pay attention until January. When the Superbowl is over and the NCAA Football Championship has been awarded, most people will shift into college hoops mode.

But what about those of us who are already there? Who can we talk to until that happens? I don't know. I guess that's why I'm blogging about it. Maybe someday my son will grow to appreciate it the way that I do. Until then, I guess this will be my outlet.

For those who got bored (or lost) in the first paragraph, I'll summarize. I love college basketball. I hate that I'm the only person so into it this early in the season. My Tar Heels rock! Get ready for lots of fun basketball posts.

The End.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

90 Minutes and Counting

Yes, that's right, it's the happiest day of the year! College basketball season tipped off earlier this week, and at 4:00pm ET my unanimously picked number 1 Tarheels kick off their season at home against Penn. With the entire starting line-up returning, including reigning player of the year (and one of our favorite guys), Tyler Hansbrough, it's going to be a definite thrill ride all the way through March!

I'm soooooooooo excited! Both Gideon and I are wearing our baby blue today! The only downside? Today's game doesn't seem to be important enough to merit major media attention (especially all the way out here in Idaho), so I'll be checking the score on the computer, instead of watching the game live. Oh well. At least that's something!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Parenthood Paradigm Shift

Okay I confess. I was a total snob before I became a parent. I would be in a restaurant, or church or even in the store and while smiling outwardly, think silently to myself, "Why don't those people learn to control their children and teach them how to behave in public?" I would stare at people's stained and scarred furniture and crayola decorated walls and think, "Why don't people teach their children to respect their homes and furnishings?" I thought baby gates on stairs and child proof latches on cupboards were just for paranoid people who didn't keep a close enough eye on their children. And all the while I thought smugly to myself, "I'm not going to move my books and valuables to a higher shelf. I'm going to teach my children not to mess with them. Forget baby gates, I'll just watch the children to make sure they don't get hurt. And who needs to put latches on cupboards and drawers, I'll just teach them to stay out."

Oh yes. I knew it all back then. I had all the answers.

And then we were blessed with Gideon. And make no mistake, he is definitely a blessing. He's also a lightning fast, 20 lb. Tasmanian Devil whose reach seems to be twice as long as he is. In the time it takes me to stoke the fire, he can climb two flights of stairs. In the time it takes to set up the baby gate, he can be at the fire place and pulling on the poker. No shelf, table or chair is safe unless it's above four feet high. He can open a childproof bottle of ibuprophen, have the Tupperware cupboard emptied in seconds, unroll a new roll of toilet paper in nano seconds, unplug the computer (which he's managed twice in two days. That's the reason this wasn't finished earlier today. He pulled the plug right in the middle of this brilliant soliloquoy once already today.) He somehow got the wires out of one the speakers to the surround system. (And I don't know how to hook it back up.) He can manage to get the Cheerios open, unscrew the lid of a bottle or sippy cup and of course, grab an entire bowl of baby food from mom's hands and dump it upside down on her lap and the floor. Laughing all the while of course. Make no mistake, he's a happy and exuberant child. Anyone who's been in church with us will vouch for that. He doesn't fuss or cry, but his shrieks and squeals of delight are enough to get the attention of an entire congregation bowed in prayer.

So I've shifted. My living room has been rearranged completely so that the chairs and coffee table now form a barracade in front of the fireplace. (This is not convenient when trying to use the fireplace, but what else can I do.) Since he can still wriggle in the space under the coffee table, I've started supplementing this barracade with a frontline of his "Bigger" toys hoping that they keep him occupied enough that he doesn't figure out how to move them out of the way on his own. My coffee table volumes on the Netherlands and Morocco have been moved to higher shelves for the present. As have any and all candles, floral arrangements, pictures and figurines. We have a gate that shuts in a room together. Convenient for keeping baby off the stairs, not so much for getting to the door or phone or bathroom quickly. The dishes and laundry can only be done at night after he's in bed. As well as the sweeping, dusting and mopping. My bed rarely ever gets made, showers are taken at night most of the time, the floors never seem truly clean, the remotes to everything must be kept up high, the clutter never seems to go away and my coffee tables and shelves no longer make the perfect statement they always did before. Do all parents experience this? And more importantly, how long does it last?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Greatest Adventure!

My son may not have his father's nose. He may not have my eyes. We have no idea if he'll be tall or short. Will he be organized like me? Funny like Travis? Musical? Athletic? Shy? Outspoken?

We have no idea.

What we do know is that he is ours. Gideon is the greatest blessing in our lives. He's the reason I get up in the morning. He's the reason we work hard and try to become better people all the time. And raising him has been the greatest adventure. In some ways I think it's even more fun not knowing what he might do or be or look like. Each day I expect his eyes to change color. (Both of his birth parents had brown eyes.) And they might still. But it's a fun adventure to watch for that. To see what color his hair might be (now that he's actually getting some hair.) As he grows will he have our interests, talents and hobbies? Or will he be more like his birth family? Who knows? But it's going to be so fun to find out.

But for all he might not have, Gideon does have two parents who absolutely adore him.

A birth mother and her family who loved him so very much that they wanted the absolute best for him. They loved him so much in fact that they placed him with us, so we could give him all that they couldn't provide. Most importantly the opportunity to be part of an eternal family.

And he has endless possibilities. That mischevious little brain that's always working has the opportunity to live in the greatest nation on earth where he is given opportunities to learn and grow.

Who knows what he'll be or how he'll look? But it doesn't matter. It only matters that he's loved so much by so many.

November is National Adoption Month.

I saw this video on Brenley's blog and had to post it. It's so very beautiful.

Pass along the message. There is hope, even in situations that seem devastating. As the LDSFS ads say frequently, "Adoption isn't giving a baby up. It's giving them more."

I can't even imagine life without Gideon. I have a hard time remembering what I did or talked about or how I spent my time. Every conversation, every plan, every hope for the future centers around that little munchkin head. B. is our hero. She gave us the opportunity to be a family instead of just a couple. So I have to say I'm making it my personal mission to make sure that the baby boy she's not raising knows just how much he was loved before he was even in our family.

When Grandma Babysits...

...Things get a little bit crazy!

And at Nana's house, he learned how to get the Cheerios open. That was a fun mess to clean up.