did these make you laugh as hard as i did???
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
i was sitting on the floor when harrison came over and gave me a huge hug. he said, "i want to give you a hug....i want to cuddle with you". and, then, while he patted my back he said, "i'm going to take care of you".
i love these special moments.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
a real life conversation...
harrison (while taking off his sweater): mommy, can we put this in the dirty wash?
harrison (while taking off his sweater): mommy, can we put this in the dirty wash?
mommy: yes, sweet boy. how did you get to be so sweet?
harrison: i'm growing up.
(mommy is stunned into silence but looks at harrison with tears in her eyes and smiles)
harrison repeats: i'm growing up.
Friday, November 13, 2009
(photos by leslie norgren)
one year ago we welcomed graham peregrine white into our family. what a joy it was to go from being a family of three to a family of four! we were thrilled to have two little boys - brothers and, hopefully, best friends!
here's the story of how graham came into the world...
because i had an emergency c-section with harrison i was given the option to schedule a c-section or have a vbac (vaginal birth after cesarean) with graham. after considerable thought i decided to leave it up to God. ha! if i made it to my due date (november 20th) i was going to go ahead with the c-section that was scheduled for that day. if i went into labor early i was going to try to go natural. and by "natural" i mean "vaginal" because, seriously, why would i ever want to deliver a baby the au natural way? give me epidural or give me death!
it was a thursday night when i reminded jeremy that we needed to get some pictures of my pregnant belly. as he was taking the pictures i got mad at him because i didn't think he was shooting from a good angle. oh, the vanity! it's funny how even a gynormous pregnant woman cares about looking as thin as possible. silly me! anyway, i got frustrated with him and he got frustrated with me. he said, "we'll just get some more tomorrow" and i thought to myself, "this is going to be the last opportunity". and i was right.
we had a twin bed set up in the "nursery" area of our bedroom in the event that i would have the c-section. (our bed is too high to climb). that twin bed became my best friend because i was able to kick jer out of our bed (toward the end of my pregnancy) and replace him with five pillows. frankly, he was tired of fighting the pillows all night, so i think he welcomed the twin bed! all that to say, it was a typical night; i was in the queen bed and jer was in the twin. this ended up working in jer's favor. i woke up around midnight with contractions. mind you, i had been having contractions for months and had been placed on restrictions because of them. but these contractions were different. much more pressure. much more back pain. this being my second pregnancy, however, i remained calm and did my best to sleep through them. finally, at 5 am i woke jer up and told him the news. he called meme & papa and got everything squared away.
papa came down to our house to stay with harrison. meme was going to go to the hospital. we left our house around 7:30 am. the contractions were around 5 minutes apart and were getting quite painful. it was the the "stop what you're doing, focus, and breathe through them" kind of pain. we arrived at labor & delivery and got all hooked up to the monitors. everything looked great. they asked me if i wanted a c-section and i told them i wanted to be checked to see how dilated i was. jer & i could make a decision after that.
around 8:30 am they finally got around to checking me. one centimeter. one little teeny tiny centimeter. i had been one centimeter for weeks! eight and a half hours of labor and no progress. was i impatient? maybe. was i willing to endure that terrible back labor any longer? no way! let's get this little munchkin out!!
it took another hour and a half of preparations before i was actually wheeled into the operating room. during this time we met our labor & delivery nurse, wendy, who was my angel. she was amazing at helping me breathe through the contractions and keep my body relaxed. jer was busy putting as much pressure on my back as was humanly possible.
T.M.I. ALERT!!! (if you'd like to avoid reading something that might just be "too much information", please skip the following paragraph).
one funny note about graham's delivery... (well, it's funny now)... as i approached the end of my pregnancy it was CONSTANT on my mind that i needed to get a bikini wax. unfortunately, running after a toddler and being placed on restrictions did not help in my quest to be well groomed "down there". i am dying just thinking about it. as i was being prepped for surgery the doctor examined my previous incision to make sure he could cut in the same spot. i heard him tell the nurse, "she needs a little shave". i'm sure my face must have turn beet red. and i did what all laboring women do. i turned to jer and blamed him for the fact that i hadn't gotten a wax! during the next contraction, while an intern was busily shaving me (i'm still dying!), sweet nurse wendy got down close to my face. she was rubbing my forehead and gently coaching me to relax. and then she said the perfect thing..."well, your eyebrows are sure beautifully waxed!" : ) oh, how i loved nurse wendy! she turned a really embarrassing moment into a really funny one!
finally, they took me to the operating room. i was having such terrible back labor that they wheeled me back. (i guess most elective c-sections walk to the o.r.). i got on the table and spent the next 25 minutes sitting in the most uncomfortable position i've ever been in while the anesthesiologists attempted to put in my spinal block. it was almost like being crunched into the fetal position...while having contractions. truly, it was really grueling. but, thanks to jer and nurse wendy, i remained happy, calm and positive. it really was a matter of remaining focused and relaxed despite all the pain.
thankfully, the spinal block took effect immediately. it was go time! while they were operating the anesthesiologist announced that jer & i had been in that same operating room, on the same day, almost at the same hour, just 19 months ago! harrison and graham were born 19 months apart to the day - harrison at 9:28 am and graham at 10:35 am. he thought that was pretty cool and so do we!
graham came into the world fairly quietly. (he was, indeed, in the posterior position, hence all the back pain. both my boys were sunny side up). he cried initially, of course, but, overall, he just seemed to be taking it all in. he was very peaceful. he was, and is, very beautiful! he nursed immediately, he enjoyed his bath in the recovery room, he even let the nurses do a LENGTHY exam because they were allowing interns to help (it's a teaching hospital). he slept well, ate well, and pooped well. our time in the hospital was uneventful and enjoyable. we took him home without any worry...just happiness to be together as a family at home. graham did not cry at all for two weeks. at one point i even asked the nurse, "he doesn't cry. is that okay?". little did i know he would cry for the next five months! : )
the name peregrine means "traveler". we chose that name for a couple reasons. first, jer is a direct descendant of peregrine white, who was the first baby born in the new world. he was born on the mayflower while the ship was anchored in provincetown harbor. coincidentally, peregrine white was born on november 20th (my due date) in the year 1620. we thought it would be cool to honor one of jer's ancestors, especially since they were to share a birthday. second, the meaning of the name, "traveler", conjured the idea of an adventurous spirit. and graham had been adventurous and mischievous since eight weeks in utero! the name could not be a better fit for this sweet boy of ours!
at one year of age graham smiles more than any child i've ever seen! he has an undeniably outgoing, joyful disposition! he has an unbelievable zest for life! he has no fear! we have found him 1) standing on top of the tray on his high chair, 2) climbing up and, yes, making it over the baby gate, 3) standing on a dining room chair, and 4) climbing over the tray to get into his stroller all by himself. he keeps us on our toes. he keeps us amazed. he keeps us smiling and laughing. he is an absolute delight...our bright sunshine!
mommy, daddy & harrison love you so much, graham! thank you for making our lives so fun! happy birthday, precious boy! i can't wait to see what the next year holds for you!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
hello there, little mister~
you are 17 days away from turning one! i keep asking myself how it is possible that an entire year has gone by since you entered our lives. i cannot believe you are going to be one! ONE!
what can i say about you (aside from the fact that you make our lives SO MUCH FUN!)?
you don't say anything. not one word. but when you are trying to communicate you have no trouble making yourself very clear! you wave "hi" and do a great "so big". you pick up the phone (the toy phone and the real one) and make a noise with the same tonal sound as "hello". you push your cars and trucks around the floor and make "vroom vroom" noises - which is, quite possibly, one of the most precious things i've ever seen! you cry when your food is all gone. you cry even harder when you have to go to sleep before harrison. mama knows your noises but i simply cannot wait until you can actually verbalize what is going on in that precious head of yours!
you try so hard to make us laugh. you are an absolute ham!! you've started bouncing and dancing to music, which cracks me up every time. you make silly faces and you exaggerate everything. (i'm smiling just thinking about it. it's so hard to describe because it's such an "in the moment" kind of thing. basically, you should just know that you are really, really funny.)
you play a little game where you "share" your binky (and sometimes your puffs) with me. it's really sweet how you try to get them in my mouth. you also like to push my hands over my eyes so i can play peek-a-boo with you. you are a very engaging child - so interactive.
you still drink 3 bottles a day. and, sometimes, a small one before bed. you finally, FINALLY, like to hold the bottle all by yourself. i've been much slower in feeding you solids. the reason for this is because you still really don't have any teeth. the two on the bottom have cut through and are getting more noticeable each day. you just cut one on the top and i think the other is close behind because they've been bothering you a lot. so far we do soft fruits (bananas, pears, peaches, oranges) and soft veggies (carrots, peas, potatoes). you love bread and cherrios and puffs. so, really, i think you do pretty darn well for only being able to chew with your gums!! i'm determined to give you a cupcake for your birthday so i guess we'll just have to see how that goes.
you LOVE your freedom. you walk around the house all day, barely stopping to sit. you climb and climb and climb. i turn around and find you up on the couch, or standing on the bench, or on the top step of the step stool, or up two flights of stairs. there are days when i wonder if you have a death wish. but then i remember that you are just a boy. a very, very adventurous boy!
one thing, though, my sweet boy...you are VERY accident prone. essentially, you are a walking injury. i think this is because you are much more brave than you are coordinated. mama is constantly checking your pupils to make sure they are dilating properly. i know i'm paranoid. but, seriously.
you refuse to wear shoes (your brother did that, too) but i keep trying. i really want you to be able to walk outside in the snow this winter! you love going on walks. you love your daddy. you love your blanket and cuddling up in bed for a nap. you love chewing on anything and everything you can get your little hands on (this drives your mama crazy, by the way). you love pulling the toilet paper off the roll. you love eating toilet paper. sigh. you LOVE harrison. you love being up on the furniture. you love splashing in the bathtub. you love books with flaps that you can lift. you love to smile and laugh and be tickled. you love life.
and we love, love, LOVE you!!
last weekend jer took the boys up to meme & papa's house to spend the night. on the drive up harrison got sick. he vomited all over himself and his car seat. his tummy settled down some and we were planning to let him stay the night but harrison decided that he wanted to come back home. on the way home he got sick again. lovely.
by the way, if you ever need to hose down a car seat i highly recommend taking them to the car wash. the high powered sprayer and soap work miracles!!
continuing on... today i was reading the book alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day to harrison. it is one of my all time favorites! there is a part where alexander is riding to school in the car pool and he doesn't get a window seat in the car. this, of course, is terrible and horrible so alexander exclaims that he is going to get carsick.
harrison asked, "what's carsick?"
i said, "it's when you puke in the car."
harrison said, "just like me."
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
a real life conversation...
harrison woke up early from his nap today. in an effort to get him a bit more rest we read books quietly together on my bed. when "quiet time" was over we headed downstairs for a snack.
mommy: (with outstretched arms) will you carry me?
harrison: (with a cute little scrunched up face) i think you're too heavy.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
a real life conversation...
mommy: hey, mister, please climb down off the baby gate.
harrison: look at me! i'm up high!
mommy: yes, i see that you are up high.
harrison: i climb a ladder.
mommy: well, no, that's not a ladder, and it's not a step stool. it's a baby gate and it's not made for climbing.
harrison: yeah, that be pretty dangerous!
Monday, September 21, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
today, for the very first time, i attempted to take the boys for a walk by carrying graham in the baby bjorn and pushing harrison in the stroller. let me tell you, it was a WORK OUT. i have friends who think this could be an excellent way to get some exercise, drop a few pounds, increase some endorphins, blah, blah, blah. me? i really don't think i'll be doing it again. ever.
i'll keep you posted on that one.
after i set graham (and myself) free from the bjorn, harrison thought it would be fun to give it a whirl...
Friday, September 11, 2009
listen here, you little troublemaker...you are not yet ten months old and...
have already taken your first steps, finally got a tooth, are beginning to get into everything, can turn pages on your books all by yourself, make us laugh all the time, love to eat puffs, love to chase your brother around the house, love to sit in the grass and eat leaves, and have a zest for life that makes your mommy very tired. it's time for you to slow down a bit, mister man!
yesterday i took a few moments to myself and left you unattended. (aka: mama needed to go potty). everything was fine until i heard you crying. i came out of the master bathroom to find this (in the guest bathroom)...
apparently, son, you were sad because your fun had, literally, run out.
thanks for always making us smile, sweet boy!! we LOVE you!
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
jer & i were fortunate to spend last weekend away. vegas is an interesting place, to say the least. we got to see some dear friends and spend some time catching up - so good!
my ears still haven't recovered from listening to all the drunk, screaming chicks (a bachelorette party) on the way there. that's right, folks, they were already inebriated at 10 am on a friday morning. as one man in the airplane hanger eloquently put it, "what happens in vegas, starts in denver!"
and my lungs still haven't recovered from all the second-hand smoke i breathed while there.
and my eyes still haven't recovered from all the smut i saw while there.
BUT, amidst all that "fog" (shall we say?) were all the fun things vegas has to offer. we did everything tourist-y and had a great time!!
our friends, blindside, were doing a show. this was taken during sound check.
the eiffel tower at paris - half the size of the original. jer & i went up to the top and got to see the bellagio's water show from up there.
on the gondola. we chose to go for a ride on one of the outdoor ones. our gondolier gave us gambling tips and sang to us.
papa, daddy & harrison went to see the colorado rockies a couple weeks ago. the game started at 6:15 pm and the boys didn't get home until 10:30 pm! harrison stayed awake the entire time!
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
this morning i awakened to see two little eyes peeking at me from the side of my bed. i said, "good morning, love. want to come up and cuddle with mommy & daddy?". i guess that is exactly what he wanted because he quickly began handing me all the essentials...
* a mercer mayer book (a gift from meme & papa which harrison recently told me is his "new favorite")
* a tape measure (we don't go anywhere without it these days)
* a stuffed dalmation puppy dog (his bedroom is decorated with vintage fire trucks and the dog had been sitting up high on the shelf until he realized that he is now tall enough to reach it)
* his blue woobie
* his white woobie (the hospital-issued one that we used to swaddle him up tight when he was a newborn)
he climbed up, gave me a hug, and said what have recently become my "new favorite" words..."i love you lots, mommy".
it may have been 6:30 in the morning (a bit too early for my liking), but that was the best start to a day i've had in a long time!
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
that means one thing in our house: it's trash day! and trash trucks are a very cool thing to a two-year old boy! today we saw blue trash trucks and green trash trucks. we also got to see the blue recycling truck. man, oh man, wednesdays are fun!
harrison has taken a great liking to trucks of all kinds. he can tell you the difference between a dump truck, a semi truck, a ups truck, a bulldozer, a bus, a trash truck, a mail truck, a cement mixer, and just a regular old pick up truck (which is every bit as cool!). he loves watching the trash collectors do their job. he loves watching construction workers do their jobs. he loves watching the mail man do his job.
he is just down right fascinated with trucks and the people who drive them!!
the best thing about this is getting to see the reaction of the trash collectors when they notice that harrison is watching. they smile, wave to him, and even honk the truck's horn! which, of course, excites my little man to no end!
what impresses me the most about this is that harrison thinks that being a trash collector is the coolest thing on earth....the best job ever! it makes me wonder when the world will start influencing him to think otherwise. when will he become jaded or judgmental or embarrassed about things like collecting trash? when will he stop wanting to help me take out the trash? when will it become un-cool to love the trash truck?
i don't know the answer. what i do know is that i am going to SOAK UP these moments of being able to see the world through his two-year old eyes. i have loved waving at the trash collectors as much as he has...and thanking them for the great job they do for us! i hope for many more opportunities to experience things through the lens of an innocent child!
Sunday, August 9, 2009
hi. you may not remember me. we've only met two, maybe three, times. i used to work for a couple of guys you know. when you would call them, i would answer the phone and patch you through. i know that in your line of work you meet lots and lots of people. i would not be at all offended to find out that you really don't remember me.
i just wanted to let you know that i will never forget you.
my first "encounter" with you was before i actually became the official "phone-call-patcher-through-er". the girl who was training me answered the phone one day and chatted briefly. the next thing i knew she had her head bowed, her eyes closed and she seemed to be listening intently. i knew that whomever was on the other end of that conversation was praying. and i could tell that he was praying specifically for her. she hung up the phone, dried her teary eyes and explained, "that was guido...he is so awesome". actually, "awesome" might not have been her exact word (she's not really an "awesome"-saying kind of girl). nevertheless, i quickly understood that getting a call from the guy named guido would be, if nothing else, very interesting.
turns out "interesting" doesn't really do you justice.
the first time i actually spoke to you was just a week or two after i officially took over the job. we chit-chatted for a minute and then you gave me a challenge. you strongly encouraged me to figure out why i had been named rachel. you suggested that it could be a very powerful "realization" for me...that i was not named by chance...rather, i am rachel for a reason. you may or may not have prayed for me that day, i don't recall. what i do remember, though, is getting off the phone with you and having a sense of being known, being befriended, being cared for, and, most importantly, being called to figure out something deeper about myself.
five minutes on the phone with you and i had a new goal in life.
i pondered it. i prayed about it. i did word studies. i read scripture. (i must admit that i got a bit hung up on the story of rachel & leah...specifically, that rachel was the beautiful sister...but that was just down right silly of me). the answer did not come easily.
but i never thought it was supposed to.
it wasn't until years later, long after i had left that job and moved to a new city - long after i had seen/spoken to you for the last time - that the "realization" finally surfaced. instantly, the tears flowed. they were tears of sorrow. tears of knowing - deeply and truly knowing - that...
i am a lost little lamb, in need of a Shepherd to rescue me.
socrates said, "the unexamined life is a life not worth living". obviously, i have a whole life to continue examining. but, let me just say, this particular examination was eye-opening. it was life-changing, as you promised it would be. it was recognizing why i do the things i do...who i am. it was surrender. it was understanding - really, finally comprehending - that salvation and reconciliation and redemption are not just words in a concordance. they are VERBS...living, breathing, and active in our every day lives!
it was a deeper level in the life-long journey that is leading me closer to Christ.
guido, there is so much more i could write about you. maybe about the time you asked my boyfriend (who had just met you 30 seconds prior) to pray for you while he was driving down the interstate, rushing to get you to your destination? maybe about how you've been an encourager to my former boss and his wife, upholding their marriage and family? maybe about how you will travel at a moment's notice, sometimes going to the airport without even knowing the destination, just waiting on God to show you the way? maybe about how you've dealt with pain in your own family, all the while lifting up others? maybe about how you intercede for others? maybe about how you speak the Truth? maybe about how you reach out to people in a very difficult, wearing industry and fulfill a calling that others may consider far too radical?
yes, i could say all that. although, i have a feeling you wouldn't want me to mention any of it. my sense is that you would have perfect contentment without ever knowing the affect you've had on me. (that's what makes you far more than "interesting"). i, however, just felt the need to share with you how thankful i am to God for having used you so mightily in my life. and thank YOU for always listening to His voice and following where He leads. blessings to you, my friend!
Friday, July 17, 2009
a colorado native, that's for sure...graham is already climbing mountains. well, to him they are mountains. to us, they are flights of stairs. he climbs them effortlessly. with a smile that can only mean "i am FREE"!
and now that he has accomplished "mountains", everything else in the house is just a "mole hill". my life is getting much more busy! : )
Saturday, July 11, 2009
these are the images of life over the past few months (in no certain order)...we have loved playing outside. harrison's "school" teacher gave him these golf clubs for his 2nd birthday. harrison loves to golf (just like his daddy). he even throws the clubs (just like his daddy). heehee
denver's spring weather was absolutely gorgeous. we went for lots and lots of walks. this picture of the boys cracks me up...especially graham in his sunglasses!
jeremy was a groomsman for his buddy norg (aka jason norgren). we were so thrilled that norg finally got hitched to a lovely girl named leslie! also, jer and i just celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary...and we are still very much in love!!
a rare moment...the boys are actually holding hands and smiling at the same time! miracle.
harrison has enjoyed building "forts" and "houses" with the living room furniture, blankets and pillows.playing outside. love that sweet face. harrison has been in his big boy bed (which he calls his "good boy bed"!) for quite a while now. it's just been over the past month, however, that he has realized that he can get out all by himself. he loves to come climb in bed with mommy & daddy at 6:30 in the morning.
MOST of the time i want to get a picture of the two of them it turns out like this. graham is so happy, and harrison wants nothing to do with it. although it is frustrating for me at the moment, looking at this always makes me laugh.
one day (i think this was in the month of may), harrison decided he wanted to go outside to play. we explained that he couldn't go outside unless he got dressed. apparently, he thought pants were optional. i suppose the mittens and snow boots would keep him warm enough.
graham is now officially one very happy camper. it was a long road, filled with lots of tears, but we have made it to the other side and could not be more in love with our littlest munchkin. graham smiles and laughs so much more than harrison ever did. he is much more social. he began sitting up and crawling at seven months. now, at almost eight months, he would rather pull up to a standing position and "cruise" around. he is desperate to climb the stairs! he still does not have any teeth...but he sure is teething! and drooling! and still spitting up everywhere! i long for the days when he won't need a bib anymore.
harrison is just starting to enjoy playing with graham. he loves to stand on the back of the walker and graham pushes and pulls him around the house. while watching a baby einstein video, harrison will narrate the story for graham. and while he has definitely used the words, "no, mine" quite a bit, he is also very happy to share toys with graham. graham could care less...he's just thrilled when harrison looks his direction! : )on father's day morning the boys climbed in bed with daddy and gave him their presents. jeremy is an amazing dad and the boys are enthralled with him!
over the fourth of july weekend we took a road trip to iowa to visit with my family. this is a picture of harrison and ty (my cousin, lisa's, son) in the bathtub together. you can't see their faces, but i thought it was cute that they were playing with their cups the exact same way. ty is six months younger than harrison, but referred to harrison as "baby" the entire time we were there. they had SO MUCH FUN together. the road trip was a huge success, with the exception of sickness that we picked up along the way. graham and i are still getting over some kind of yucky bug.
harrison got to do sparklers and see fireworks for the first time while graham slept peacefully inside.
we went to iowa to celebrate my grandma glady's 90th birthday. she may be 90, but she really hasn't slowed down a bit. she raised four children all by herself (my grandpa died when my dad was really little). she has eight grandchildren and sixteen great-grandchildren (if i counted correctly) and she made a loaf of banana bread for each one. she also made two pecan pies for the event...a really great pie-maker!
one final pic of our sweet graham-er boy, playing in the grass during the picture-taking process at grandma's party. a random little note about graham: he's been "blessed" with rockstar/mohawk hair. in fact, instead of the typical cowlick that most boys/men have , he has a double cowlick, in the shape of a figure eight...one with the hair patterned in a clockwise fashion and the other with the hair patterned in a counter-clockwise fashion. just another of the adorable little things that makes him so cute and so special!!