Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Here are just a few of the hundreds of pictures taken last week. All co-vacationeers are pictured. Still glad to be home for awhile, though.

It's hard to believe it's been a year since Katrina made landfall. It's funny, but during that time alot of my prayers were directed to Guatemala, and Benny's safety. The lines of communication from his foster mom to Dillon Int'l weren't that swift, and tensions grew when we kept hearing about the mudslides and deaths in the outskirts of Guatemala City. Guatemala certainly experienced their own fallout from the Hurricane Season of '05. It ultimately delayed our getting him for a bit-which is verrry minor in the grand scheme of things. We even flew around a hurricane getting to Guatemala, but looking back seems like a million years ago.

What's playing on ITunes right now? Quite an interesting mix!

Mark Knopfler
Talking Heads
Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes

Monday, August 28, 2006

What do you get with 6 adults, and 5 kiddos under the age of 4...all under the same roof for a week? No, not Big Brother 4, or some wacky reality show! A nice vacation, and a good opportunity to rekindle friendships.

We just returned from a fantastic trip to the Emerald Coast of Florida, with the Hutchins and the Robinsons. This part of FL was a first for us, but if you get a chance to visit Rosemary Beach (www.rosemarybeach.com)...it is well worth it. The only thing whiter than my belly was the sugary sands hugging the ocean.

For a solid week, our itinerary included waking up to the melodic sounds of small kids beginning their days (or something like that). After breakfast, we would head to the beach for a little R & R, take a stroll through town for lunch, come back to the house for a quick swim (and wrestle Benny down for a nap). We would then head back to the beach for a quick play in the surf and sand, before making dinner and buckling in for the night (with the exception of the date night-sans kids, for each couple).

We made a few quick excursions to Sea Side. This was a fun place to eat a snack and browse through the local bookstore. There's nothing like fried popcorn shrimp/fries/fried pickles for breakfast. Also try the Red Bar for a great meal, if you are ever in the neighborhood.

Our family highlights were playing with Benny in the sand, waves, and pool. I personally enjoyed the late-night discussions before heading off to bed. Some of the topics included:

1. Would you vote for Bill Clinton if he were constitutionally able to run again?
2. Is the war on terror a just war, and would you want your son to be involved in the fight.
3. Who would you choose to invite to a dinner party (not including the slam dunks like Jesus...)? I chose General Jim Gavin, a deceased family member-but at a younger age, and MLK.
4. How does God "talk" to you? In a literal voice in your head, a whisper, conscience.....

Vacations are nice, but there's no place like home. I am even more enthusiastic to build my business, and help my clients. On a greater note, my friend Sean saw his young daughter, Emma, stand up for the first time. This is a milestone that is worthy of praise.

Books on my nightstand:
1. The Bible
2. Every Man's Marriage
3. Wooden on Leadership (ie: John Wooden)

For whatever reason, the pictures are not loading....pictures are forthcoming

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Happy Belated Birthday, Aunt Wessie.

The challenge of not living by relatives is finding time to visit.
This weekend was great, since Benny met his cousin, Carissa for the first time.
I also got to see my sister. Bonus!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Here are a few bits and pieces I've picked up along the way:

* Chances are that you are more stressed out if you are always looking for ways to avoid stress.
* If you are "the boss", be nice.
* If someone rings your doorbell (3 times) after your baby goes down for the night. Answer the door. It could be your nice neighbor offering fresh garden tomatoes (and his business card). This just happened-and they look great. I didn't even know he was a lawyer.
* It's always a bad idea to let your baby hang around naked before the bathtub is filled.
* If you can stay at home with your boy even one day/week. Do it.
* Where there's rocks and dirt...let your boy play.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Benny: Dude, what's with the giddup?
Jonah: I'll wear what I want to....even if it's bunny ears in August!
Benny: I'm sorry. Are we still best friends?

We had Grace and Jonah over this Saturday night. The 3 kids had a great time, but I think Kelly and Aaron had an even better time. It was their first date night in 7 1/2 months. Saturday's fun also ended a short debate G and I had about adopting 1 or 2 kids this next go-around. With 3 small kids running around, I'm not sure how Jenna G, Everlie B, Kristi B, and the others with 3 kids do it. Maybe G and I are wimps, but we're not crazy. Even that's debatable, I guess.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Friday, August 04, 2006

Sean and I have volunteered to teach next quarters Mens Class on Wednesdays. Any suggestions on material?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Here's a few pics from the other afternoon. One outside in the heat, and the other inside trying to cool off. We have tried to keep Benny out of the heat as much as possible, but we ended up walking around the yard a few evenings ago. I had to get something out of the truck, and check out our neighbors new deck. There are some bushes, and wood retaining walls where our backyards meet. Never wanting to miss a photo-op, I perched Benny on the retaining wall and proceeded to snap a few pics. Jim (our neighbor) walked over to warn me about the poison ivy. Since I am immune to it, I have never really given it consideration. He even had to show me what it looks like. To date: no breaking out or itching.

Check out todays post (The Cross And The Sword) on Mike's website (see right margin for link). He mentions and links a NY Times article on Christianity/Political issues that seem to be permeating the airwaves, radiowaves, and pulpits throughout the country. For whatever reason it struck me as being relevant today.

After a bit of thinking, reading this article reinforces to me the choices I have made in not paying much attention to Fox News, and the conservative radio talk shows. My wife sometimes gets frustrated at some of my political views, and politicians I would vote for (if the constitution would allow). Heck, I even think that Rep. John Murtha's comments about the overall military situation seems somewhat logical-from what I understand. Does this neccessarily make me a "bad" American or Christian? Of course my lines of thinking might be skewed, she also cringes when I refer to Barry Switzer as "The King". This line of thinking-in turn-makes me verry happy that football is just around the corner. One thing is for certain...I'm going to try and get tickets to the Sept 10th Broncos/Rams game. I'll be sporting Blue and Orange for this one. This can only mean one thing....My lovely (sporting-challenged) wife will feel compelled to foster family disharmony, and dress Benny in his Rams outfit. Come Oct 28th, Father and Son will unite, and be sporting our OU gear. It might even be fun to head out to Columbia for the game. I have lived in MO over half my life, and am still very apathetic to Mizzou athletics. I guess growing up, Norman, OK seemed alot closer than Columbia, MO...we'll that, and they pretty much have consistently stunk throughout the decades. And, No, I will not get into a Norm Stewart debate. He reminds me too much of Bobby Knight. I wouldn't want my kids playing for either.