On April 7th, Christine met Joan at the park, and Grayson, Jack, Leo and Lydia all played. And as you can tell from the photos, they had a blast:

What you can’t tell from the photos is that Jack and Grayson played so hard at the park that JAck fell asleep on the couch while Christine was putting Grayson down for his nap when they got home:

That was a first!

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Every year, Austin throws a big party at Zilker Park, and calls it the Annual Kite Festival.

This year, because the weather was nice, the boys were old enough, and Aunt Peggy lives in Austin now, we decided to attend. And boy did we have fun?

We couldn’t get our kite to fly, but luckily, Josh Baer had a kite in the air when we got there, so he let Jack fly his kite for a few minutes, while Amy Baer held Grayson (who never goes to strangers as easily as he jumped into her arms) and helped him pet a friend of their’s puppy.

There were other friends from work there as well, and we all took turns flying Josh’s kite.

Then, Aunt Peggy went and bought a kite that would actually fly, and she got it up in the air, while Grayson held the rope for her

While Peggy and Grayson were flying a kite, Christine and Jack went over to the rock wall to climb it. Jack actually climbed up around 6 or 8 feet, and had fun until he realized if he went any higher we couldn’t help him hold on… it’ll be fun to see how high he gets every year from now on.

All in all, it was lots of fun.

We left right as the first signs of rain started to show, and on the way to the car we felt a few drops of rain, but it never really rained on us.

We stopped at Wally’s Burgers on the way home, ate quickly and took naps. It was a full day.

The rest of the photos are here.

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Earlier this week Elise and Maly came over to visit, and Christine took some photos of Maly on the Rocking Harley Uncle Raymond and Aunt Debbie bought for Jack and Grayson for Christmas:

That’s one rocking biker chick!

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Jack went and spent the afternoon with Rowan (and family) on Sunday, while Christine and I finished moving into the new house:

Thanks Marc and Cyndi

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Christine posted a photo gallery on her brand new .Mac account. Go see the photos here. Needless to say, we had a blast this year at Halloween.

BTW, she’s now gushing about how easy it was to create a web page with iWeb and .Mac. That’s how Apple gets the money out of you… they make it easy.

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Christine and I missed Maly’s First Birthday Party this year, because Christine and the kids weren’t feeling well.

So, we asked Elise and Josh to meet us at Zilker Park on Saturday May 5th, and we all had a grand time eating lunch together, then eating some cupcakes, and then riding the Zilker Train together:

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This week, Josh brought a pail of beach tools to work for Jack. That’s what a good Godfather does for his Godson.

He buys a few plastic toys, that Jack can use on his first trip to the beach that we’re planning for in May.

It’s not a large gesture, but it was a very thoughtful one, full of heart.

Thanks Josh.

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So let’s see. I’m in trouble. I’m in trouble because I’ve been very delinquent in updating this website. For that I apologize.

That said, here’s what’s been going on since the last post:

On Thursday, Jack got up, and it happened to be his birthday. He turned two years old, officially.

We took him outside in the backyard and took some photos of him in his dad’s maroon t-shirt again:

Two Years Old

One Year Old

He had fun taking those photos… he didn’t need help standing up this time either 😉

We opened a few gifts from the family on Thursday, just so we didn’t have that many gifts to open at his birthday party we were having on Saturday… can you tell he liked the fire truck:

More photos from the gift opening on Thursday.

That afternoon, around 4:00 or 4:30, friends starting arriving. We were hosting Christine’s family, and Mike Elmquist and Bob Beuerlein for Thanksgiving dinner this year. Mike was in town for Aggie Yell Practice that night, and was a buddy of mine in the Aggie Band years ago. Bob got back in the U.S. after a year in Iraq on Monday, 11/20, and wasn’t very far away (at Ft. Hood.) so we asked him to come join us too.

Christine has prepared most of the side dishes, and Mary and Frank had cooked the turkeys. Mike and Steven brought the desserts.

As soon as we had the table set, I had every one get together so we could take a group photo:

Dinner was amazing. Everyone had a turkey hangover and was in bed by 9 p.m.

On Thursday night, Bob, Mike and I went to Yell Practice on the south lawn of the State Capitol. And cool enough, right before Yell, we were drinking a beer in the bar in my office building, and we ran into Rev, the A&M Mascot, and we got to take a picture of Bob with Rev. Pretty cool:

On Friday morning, 12/24, Greg and I took Patrick and Jack to the t.u. vs. Aggies football game.

Whoop, the Ags beat last year’s National Champs 12 to 7. Greg and Patrick weren’t real happy about the outcome, but we all had a good time going to the game together. Actually, Jack sort of wussed out before the game started (he’s two, what do you expect) and Bob got to go instead of Jack, but again, we all had fun.

Here are some photos from Yell Practice wth Bob and from the game with Greg and Patrick.

A few more random shots:

I have photos from Jack’s Birthday Party on Saturday that I’ll get posted soon, and some movies from the past week or two too… not enough time in the day folks!

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This past weekend marked the last home game of Jack’s first Aggie Football season. And it was a good season… not because of what happened on the field, but because of the joy I experienced taking my son to football games… the same football games I used to go to as a kid with my friends and family.

I really enjoyed the games this year, because I got to spend a good amount of time with two men in my life that mean a lot to me: Bussy and Jack.

We really had a good time, and I’m looking forward to doing it all again next year if we can.

This past weekend, we also got to see Will Ketchen, one of my buddies that recently got out of the Army and is now attending MBA school. Jack enjoyed hanging out with Will:

Jack also enjoyed hanging out with Bussy. There are a few more photos of them enjoying the day in this photo gallery from this past weekend.

Gig ‘Em Aggies! (Yes, Jack knows how to say that and much more)

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Halloween came and went this year, and it was Jack’s second halloween, and Grayson and Maly’s first.

They were all so cute.

Jack was a race car driver and Maly was a Purple Dinosaur:

Grayson was a baby frankenstein:

Maly and Grayson were really just along for the ride, but I think Jack sort of got what we were doing by the second or third house. Here’s a photo of Jack getting his first piece of candy on his own during Halloween:

The funny thing is that after getting a piece of candy from the neighbors, he actually went inside their house almost like he thought we were just going over for a visit. And since they don’t have kids, I think he figured out we weren’t there to visit when he realized they didn’t have any toys out 😉

Like I said, Jack really seemed to have fun:

And Josh, Elise, Christine and I also had fun taking the kids out for Halloween.

Here’s the rest of the photos from the night.

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I took my laptop into the shop this week, and forgot to get all the photos I took between when Grayson was born and Monday off of it, so I haven’t posted a lot of photos from the hospital and the ride home, and the first week at home, so here are some photos from this past week:

  • Christine and Jack playing outside – These came out pretty good… Jack was crying because I took something away from him he should haven’t, so Christine got down and started playing with him. That tear wouldn’t drop off his cheek, but I thought it was cute.
  • Jack’s Train – look through the series… Jack loves his train, but you can see that it only takes him about 5 minutes of playing with it to want to tear the track apart, only to rebuild it. This kid’s going to go into demolition, I think.
  • Heidi and Phyllis come to visit – Our good friends Heidi and Phyllis, who I’ve worked with in at least two different companies, came to visit us this week on Thursday. Grayson got along well with both of them 😉
  • Kids Playing – Heidi’s kids, Norah and Mason, and Jack were playing in the neighbor’s front Yard. They played chase, with each falling on their own, and then the next one falling and finally the third, just to get up and do it all again!
  • Grayson and Wesley on the couch. We have some of Jack like this when Jack was tiny.
  • Jack, my little Cub – I bought this hat for Jack last summer when I worked for 24/7 Real Media and my boss, Robert Hess, took us all out to a Cubs game as a team building thing. Great game, and great hat… Jack can just now get away with wearing it. I think I’ll buy Jack a St. Louis Cardinals hat next time I go visit them.
  • Jack taking photos of his little brother. Jack shared his truck with Grayson, and then started taking photos. It was the cutest thing. If you look closely, you’ll notice that when Jack takes a photo of someone, he’s actually taking a photo of his nose (he holds the camera so that it faces him, not his subject, but we’re not picky around here 😉 ).

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It’s Sunday night, and Christine and I are still waiting on a baby.

Jack’s little brother isn’t due until next Monday (10/16) but we were both pretty sure that he was going to make an appearance last weekend… nope, we’re still waiting. I think now that I’ve decided to stop traveling, the little guy has decided to hunker down for a few more weeks and stay cozy…

So, let’s see.

Since our last post, a lot has happened. A lot.

I flew to Santa Barabara, CA, again, for work. I was out there for three days. It wasn’t nearly as pretty this time due to the fact that there was a blazing fire a few miles east of us. The westerly winds kept us covered in soot for the entire three days I was out there. But it was good for business.

Then that weekend, it was Peggy’s birthday. She came to visit the lakehouse with Debbie and Raymond, and then stopped by the house to visit Jack on her way home. They had a blast playing in Jack’s room and reading books. Here are some photos from her trip up.

I went to New York City for two days for work. I attended some advertising conferences and trade shows, and spent some time in the New York office. Good trip, but sad too. While I was in New York, Christine called me to tell me Josh’s Dad was in the hospital and it didn’t look good. I spoke to Josh for maybe 5 minutes. We didn’t say many words to each other, but we communicated what needed to be said.

Then, when I got home from New York, I’d learned that David had passed away. Their loss is our loss. I can’t bring myself to write more about David passing right now… it’s still too painful for me. I still don’t know what to say about the event, because I want to say it all, but there are too many raw emotions behind my totally inadequate words. I attended the funeral that weekend. Alan Hillboldt and I drove down to Bellville together. Josh wrote about his loss here. David was a great man and we’ll miss him dearly.

This week was pretty mundane, but not. On Sunday night around 7 p.m., I came down with a fever… that lasted until Tuesday morning at 7 a.m. Ugh. I haven’t been laid up in bed sick like that for a long time. I still have a sore-throat. Christine thought she might be in early labor on two days this week. I took Jack to school and picked him up from school on Thursday, because we thought that might be the day. It was nice to see Jack’s teacher and the other parents, but it wasn’t the day. I did get a nice yellow parking ticket though for my troubles.

This weekend, we played with the neighbors a lot, and finished our power-nesting kick. The baby’s nursery is finally ready. The bedding is set, the walls are decorated with appropriate baby stuff. There’s a new shelf on the wall with stuffed animals. Christine has probably washed 50 loads of baby clothes in the past two weeks, and well, I sort of helped.

Like I said, we’re just waiting on a baby.

In the meantime, here are some photos from the past couple of weeks for you:

  • Jack and Wesley – playing in the backyard. Yes, I know the grass is very long. You should see it today!
  • Jack and Peggy – Playing and reading books.
  • NYC – a few photos from the drive to the airport… I really didn’t have time to go out taking photos like I wanted to.
  • Raymond, Debbie and the kids – from an evening out for dinner with the Munks.
  • Water in the Yard – Jack playing with the water hose in the front yard.
  • Fingerpainting – kind of says it all doesn’t it?
  • Nora and Mason – Nora and Mason came over this morning to play.
  • Walking Faces – Faces of Jack and one of him walking with his hands in his pockets (a recent discovery)
  • Neighbors – Jack, Dylan, Nora and Mason playing at Dylan’s house. Jack took a ride in the bike carrier with Dylan too, thanks to Herbert.

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So, I’ve postd a video every day this week, and I figured I should treat you all to something really special today.

Here are five photo galleries I haven’t linked to yet:

  • Jack Playing – photos from this week, of Jack and his mom playing (they were “camping” in Jack’s room in a home-made fort, and then Jack was “taking photos” with his camera, and then playing with cars).
  • Furniture by Stan – Cyndi’s uncle refinished some antique furniture that my mom gave us a while ago. The furniture looks awesome now, and all the drawers work perfectly now mom! Now our guests (and the new baby) will have a place to put their clothes when they come visit.
  • Aggie Jack – the photos from our weekend Aggieland trip.
  • Jack by Erin – Erin took some photos of Jack with her mom, sister, Chrstine and I after church on 8/27. Too fun!
  • In the Sandbox – just some photos of Jack in the sandbox one afternoon.
  • Ben and Jack at Serranos – After church one day, we met Murphy and Amanda at Serranos by accident. We ate inside while Murphy and Amanda (and their guests) watched Jack and Ben, then we came outside and watched the boys while they ate. The boys had sooo much fun playing together.
  • Levy Party – Lori and Herbert threw a party for the kids one weekend afternoon. Lots of water splashing and playing outside.
  • Lakehouse Swimming – We went to visit Debbie and Raymond on August 19th, and I took these photos outside around the pool. Jack just loved swimming this summer!

And, here’s the double whammy… another video for today:

Have a good weekend folks! (We’ll be nesting!)

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Christine, Jack and I drove down to College Station on Saturday, to take Jack to his first Aggie game!

Long story short: The Ags won, and Jack had a GREAT time!!!

We got to town around 4:00, picked up Bussy at the mall, and drove to the reserved parking that Bussy has (he didn’t want Christine to have to walk too far, since she’s 8 months pregnant). After parking, we walked over to the quad, saw a few old BQ buddies, and waited for the band to step off.

He didn’t quite know what to do when the band marched by, but he loved every minute of it, even if the drums were a little loud for his taste. (He’ll get used to that).

Then we walked over to the Corps Center to watch the band march by again. Then on to the MSC to get Jack a good Aggie shirt (they’re hard to find in Austin folks). We ended up buying him a regulation 12th man jersey for $40. Why we spent $40 on a size 2T jersey when the shirt I was wearing probably cost $5, I can’t explain…

After cooling off a bit, we went to the car to change diapers and put away the stroller, then on to the game.

After huffing and puffing up two levels, we climbed about twenty steps to get to our seats in row 27 on the second deck on the parents side of Kyle Field. The seats are great! They’re on about the north 35 yard line, two rows down from the sky boxes, and look like they’re always in the shade.

We said “Hi” to Norma and Jake, and then Andy Kollman and one of the Luedke boys showed up to sit in front of us (they’re all from Bellville).

I could just tell Jack was impressed with everything that was going on. About 10 minutes before the game started, I went and bought us all hotdogs and water, and a pretzel. Jack ate a whole hotdog (sans bun) before the game really got started.

We sang “Spirit of Aggieland” with the band, and the National Anthem, and Texas Our Texas, and watched four F-16’s fly over before the game… then it was time for kickoff.

About half-way through the 2nd half, we said our good-byes, and headed towards the car, but we met Mike Elmquist (one of my buddies from the band) at the Reveille graves on the way out. Man it was good to see Mike!

Jack passed out once we got on the road, before we even got out of Bryan. The trip home was uneventful, but, we did get to hear the last few minutes of the Ohio State v. Texas game on the radio once we found the station. In lieu of the radio, Mike Kamp (Chrsitine’s brother) was giving us the play-by-play of the game via text messages on my cell phone (thanks Mike!).

There’s a video from the day if you want to see how much fun Jack had. It’s a big file (about 60MB, so it might take a while to download, but it’s worth it if you want to see his face when the drums marched by, heh!):

Gig ‘Em!

(oh, and by the way, since Texas lost to Ohio State, I’m thinking Thanksgiving will be a fun game this year)

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This past Sunday morning, Reese and Karen brought Kade and Gabby over to Evan and Shadel’s house. Lori and Conner joined us too. Evan was cooking lunch: Chicken, Sausage, Beans, and Green Beans… mmmmm….

Before lunch, we let the kids play, so I took some photos of them all for their parents:

Great kids! See the rest of the photos of them here.

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