Friday, November 23, 2007

A very, VERY happy Thanksgiving!

2 Great days and I have to share before I go to bed.

Thanksgiving Day was going to be a little bitter sweet for us. We were away from family and our Alaskan family had made other we were expecting a lonely day. It didn't turn out that way at all.

Lisa and I decided to make our traditional Thanksgiving breakfast...quiche. It was delicious. It is also the first time in 7 months that I allowed myself to really cheat on my diet so it tasted EXTRA delicious. We spent the morning snacking on the quiche and watching the Packers beat up on the Loins. Besides the nice breakfast, it was like any other day for us. We got on the floor and played with the girls. They took their morning (30 minute) nap and we just did our thing...waiting to hear from family.

Thursday afternoon, we set up a video conference with my family who was still gathered in Texas for my cousin's wedding. I was skeptical that it was going to work. I was thinking the connection would drop out and we would spend more time trying to keep it running than actually enjoying it. To my surprise, it worked nearly flawlessly...there were some audio hiccups early on. The video was great and everyone was able to see the girls in action. Alyssa even put on a nice audio display for everyone...we could hear her screeches echoing all the way down in Texas. I have to admit...we didn't DIScourage it!

We left the camera going for hours and hours...even during the feast. We really felt like we were there with everyone. In the evening, we finally figure out that you could expand the video to be fullscreen. Once we did that, the girls could really see everyone on the conference call and were reacting to their antics. I tried to take some pictures to show was really amazing. It really was great! It was like they were here in our living room and I'm sure it must have felt like the girls were there with them. Here is my mom talking to the girls...notice how the girls were looking right at her as if she was there in the room. Amazing. I just noticed half of Aunt Jan is in this picture too.

Here's Aunt Christin getting some face time.

And my favorite moment...and I'm REALLY regretting not getting a tri-pod out to get a better picture...but the girls were getting fussy as it was near time for their afternoon/evening nap so Lisa started reading Brown Bear. My dad had slipped into the drivers seat in Texas and very quietly sat there and listened and watched Lisa read the girls their story. Even right now, I'm getting a little choked up about it because it was a very sweet moment. I love watching Lisa read to the girls and it was so special that Dad got to sit in on it...and from my view (which is why I took that picture), it captured how surreal and special that moment was. Thank you Tom and whoever else worked their magic to make that tele-conference work. It was wonderful!

Shortly after that picture, the girls went down for their nap and we were able to eat our meal. We took pictures of it but Lisa didn't think the pictures were very pretty so don't get to see our meal. All you need to know was that it was DELICIOUS. We both overate and paid for it the rest of the night...I fell asleep on the couch at 8:30 while Lisa was feeding the girls. nice.

We also talked to Lisa's family on Thursday. Lisa's mom and grandparents got to see the girls briefly on the webcam. Now that we have that tele-conference thing down, hopefully we'll be able to share some great moments with everyone else.

So what was so great about Friday?!? We beat tu!!!!!!! As some of you know, Lisa and I are rabid A&M sports fanatics. Someone asked us when the girls were born, "you aren't going to be one of those parents that dress their kids up in their school colors and stuff, are you?" I laughed and said, "Well....YEEEAAHHHH!!!!"

A&M football hasn't given us too many things to cheer about this year but today, we beat our rival and it feels so good. Lisa and I always get a little more worked up then we should during football games but I knew we would win today. I even had a bet with my Aggie boss and am really looking forward to him paying up...I'm thinking about asking for my winnings in monthly installments, you know, to make it last longer.

Anyway, as soon as the football game was over, we switched the channel and watched A&M basketball team play in the pre-season NIT tournament championship...and WIN!!!

The second the game was over, we headed over to our Alaska family's home (Ben and Lisa) to enjoy a belated Thanksgiving feast. It was AWESOME! It brought back a lot of great memories from last year. We have spent SO much time over at their place...sitting around, drinking, listening to Dave, playing the past but haven't been over but a few times since the girls were born. It was so nice to be back and relax and have a great meal with great friends. Dinner was incredible and again, I ate waaay too much.

So now it's getting late and work is just around the corner again. It has been a wonderful Thanksgiving and I hope everyone out there had as much fun as we did this year, even if we couldn't be with the ones that we love. We are looking forward to a quiet Christmas with the girls in Alaska this year. We will be getting out the decorations soon...we haven't decorated since 03 and are really looking forward to going overboard this year. As Lisa said's going look like Christmas threw up on our house when we're done.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Baby steps

I thought I would throw together a quick post. We have lots of videos to download and only a few pictures to share. Better get started, eh?

First, I wanted to say congratulations to Josh and Bethany Smith, my cousin (and now uhhh...cousin-in-law) who was married today. My WHOLE family is in Conroe today and we want to be there so bad. It is sad to us to think everyone is together and we're not there. UGGH, it makes me want to cry. I love you all and wish we could be there. Congrats to the newlyweds! Can't wait to see pictures.

I mentioned our first big snow earlier. Here's Lisa enjoying the view from our bedroom.

In other news, we had a GREAT night last night. The two nights before last were not so good but at least par for the last month or so. One thing that helped was that there was no screaming...the girls just decided that they wanted to be awake and nothing could get them to sleep. We each had about 4.5 hours of sleep (no more than 2.5 hours at a time). Still, we were optimistic going into last night. We were pleased with how relatively easily they went to sleep. The real treat came in the middle of the night when someone would wake up, they were able to fight through the gas or whatever it was and get themselves back to sleep. I remember this happening twice where someone woke up crying and Lisa and I stayed in bed and listened...hoping but not expecting. Sure enough, the cries calmed down and snoring resumed. It was amazing. They finally woke up at 6:45 for a feeding!! What an awesome night!

Let's hope that was the start of something new.

And a picture of said angels.

Monday, November 12, 2007


The family just got bigger! Our girls are no longer the youngest. At 6:30am this morning, my brother called to tell us that his second son was born a very healthy 7 pounds, 6 ounces. Alison had a relatively quick labor and after 3 good pushes, Tyler David was born at 8:17am Texas time. Scott kept everyone updated with emails from the room right up until about 15 minutes before Tyler was born. We were sleeping so the first we heard of it was an hour later when he gave us a call. The rest of the morning was spent talking in bed about when our girls were born and how happy we are for them.

I have to admit when I looked back at the several emails he had sent...from them waiting up to the first pictures of my youngest nephew, I got all teary eyed. These girls really are making me soft. It's kind of cliche to say it but I really couldn't be happier for them. We love you Scott, Alison, Austin, and Tyler! CONGRATULATIONS!!! I can't wait to get these cousins together.

So here's the happy family.

Here's Austin reading Tyler everyone's favorite bedtime story, Goodnight Moon. Our girls love that one, too.

TD weighing in at 7 pounds, 6 ounces

Sunday, November 11, 2007

wow. what a weekend.

I've started to post this a couple of times during the weekend but haven't been able to put it into words. Maybe this time will be different.

It is getting more difficult every day. We had our monthly appointment with our doctor on Monday and talked about the problems we've been having. He thinks it's the T-word...yep, TEETHING!!! We've been in denial for a couple weeks but it's hard to dismiss all the warning signs. What we have are two completely different babies than just a few short weeks ago.

Kaitlyn's transformation has been slower whereas Alyssa's...she's a different baby. That's all I can say. Nap time is a strain. Bed time are a nightmare. The girls are so fussy and can't stay asleep. We're having a difficult time now keeping them down for their naps more than 30 minutes. Last night was the worst night we've had to date. It took almost 4 hours of moaning, rocking, and crying before they finally stayed down. Actually, I can remember some pretty bad nights earlier so it's hard to compare. What made last night so bad was how far we've come and to have a good idea of what was wrong but not be able to do anything about it. At one point when I was holding Alyssa and she was SCREAMING...I actually started thinking about my happy place. I've joked about that before but I actually started envisioning myself on a secluded white beach listening to the waves gently lapping on the sand and the sound of my skin baking in the warm sunlight and the PSSHHH of a cold Corona being opened by my adoring wife (who may or may not be wearing a bikini). I know, not very original...but it helped for a few seconds.

Back to reality. We don't know what to do next. We're talking about making some drastic changes though. We have to do something.

I have so much more to say about all this but again, back to reality, the girls are actually down at a reasonable hour so we're going to bed.

Real quick...the girls weighed in on Monday.

Alyssa...14 pounds, 13 ounces
Katy...13 pounds, 6 ounces

So in one month, Alyssa gained almost exactly one pound and Katy gained 13 ounces.

And your local weather report. We received our first significant snowfall of the year. The last one melted a day or two later, now I don't think we'll see the grass again until April. We received 5 inches of the white stuff today!!

Sorry no pictures or videos tonight...too tired. Not to mention while I was writing this, Alyssa has gotten up twice crying and Katy once (Lisa's holding Katy right now).

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Katy getting some camera time

We realized that Alyssa was getting a lot of the video time because she was the first one to be so vocal. We started taking some more videos of Katy to show off what she's been up to lately. This was a couple of days ago. Katy and I were laying on the floor so I grabbed the camera and let'er role.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

You'll laugh. You'll cry.

No babies were harmed in the making of this video.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Halloween Pictures

We had a pretty uneventful evening...just lots of kids coming around getting candy. I worked my last night shift for a while so now I'm home, trying to help with the night shift at home. The first night was a tough one. Lisa said at some point in the middle of the night (4AMish), "I don't know why I think it's going to be so much easier when you're here. Like I have visions of them going down early and sleeping until 8." Needless to say, that's not exactly how it panned out. So we had a pretty lazy day or I should say, I had a lazy day trying to readjust to normal hours after a long frustrating night of holding crying babies.

I am learning something about myself, actually I'm learning a lot about myself...but I've learned that I'm not nearly as patient as I thought I was. I considered myself an extremely patient person and envisioned long nights with crying girls and me standing tall, with infinite amounts of patience. Again, it hasn't exactly panned out like that. It is hard to admit that but I can't put into words how frustrating it is to be so tired and not be allowed to sleep. This is easily the most challenging experience of my life. And I know it will be rewarding too, and it already is to some extent, but right now it is a daily grind. We jokingly say this to the girls, "it's a good thing God made you so cute".

Check out Alyssa eyeing that candy. Yeah, we know why she weighs a pound more than her sister!

Lately, the girls will look up at each other while they're doing tummy time and even reach out. Last night and tonight they've grabbed each other's hand like they were thumb wrestling.

See what I mean about God making them cute? How can I be frustrated at those big blue eyes?

Regarding my weight's been 90% diet and 10% exercise. I have been following weight watchers online which helps me keep track of how much and what I'm eating. It's something I've been struggling with for years and I'm not sure why the girls coming home motivated me so much but somehow it did and I've managed to stick to it. Actually, it was two things. I didn't like the way I looked in the pictures I kept putting on the blog and found myself avoiding the camera...I didn't want to be left out of the pictures. And second...I want to be around for a looooong long time. I want to be a healthy Daddy and be around to hold my girls' girls in 30...or 40 years. HA! Lately, I've started going to the gym to get these last 20 pounds off. It' getting much more difficult to shed the weight now so I'm trying to put in a little extra effort to keep the weight loss going.

Also, I'm downloading a video that Lisa took last night. We've taken some cute videos, some sad videos, and some funny videos...this one will top them all.
It. is. epic.