Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Jonah's Battlefield Teddy

This past summer, when I was in the first trimester of pregnancy, Scott and I had an opportunity to take a couple weeks off to visit the East Coast. We saw friends in Washington, D.C., and some more in Long Island, New York. It was a great time for us, especially considering it was our last big trip together before toting along carseats, strollers, and pack-and-plays.

We spent months beforehand plotting our itinerary, as we had many things that we wanted to do and see. In addition to D.C. and The Big Apple, we wanted to visit Scott’s mom’s old stomping grounds of Philadelphia, PA. We figured that, instead of flying from one destination to another, we’d drive and see more of the countryside—after all, we may never get to that part of the country again so we’d better take advantage of it. Scott was absolutely delighted to find that it was just a short side trip to drive through Gettysburg, PA.

When the time came for the big trip and we entered the countryside of Pennsylvania, I’ll admit that Scott was much more excited than I about visiting the historical battlefield site, though I kept myself content with the beauty of the scenery and the novelty of the horse-drawn Amish carriages that we shared the highway with. Upon arriving to our destination, I was met with a pleasant surprise: Gettysburg is not only the home of the decisive Civil War battle, but it is also the home of Boyd’s Bears, the self-proclaimed “World’s Most Humongous Teddy Bear Store.”

It took a little convincing that our souvenir from Gettysburg should be a teddy bear for our new baby and not an “authentic battlefield bullet,” but Scott was a real trooper about searching for “the perfect bear.” We were somewhat intimidated upon entering the 3 story barn filled with more teddy bears than you could imagine, but our intimidation was immediately turned to amusement when we saw the big sign up front saying, “Don’t feed the bears—they’re already stuffed!” We looked at armed forces bears, Christmas bears, barnyard bears, Red-Hatter bears, and even one that was holding a pillow that read, “I’m a Queen because my panty-hose told me so!” Our treasure was found on the second the nursery section, of course! It didn’t have the frills that many of the other bears had, but something about it kept catching my eye. It was a soft little bear wearing a bib that said “Nighty night.” The deal was sealed when I picked it up and discovered that it could wind up to play “Braham’s Lullaby.” It was perfect for our little ‘pinto bean’ at the time.

So, we could have come home with bullets and shells from the Civil War, but instead we have “Mr. Cuddles” for Jonah. Yup, even before he was born, Jonah had his daddy suckered. And from the looks of this picture, it looks like we made a good choice.


I’ve had about seven jobs over the last six years. I liked some more than others. Some paid more, but others provided the more intangible benefits like a positive work environment and interaction with great people. Each one had its own unique pros and cons, and I am thankful for each one of them. Thankful, yes. Wanting to go back? Nope. I’ve found my niche. It’s a 24-hour job, 7 days a week, with no pay. Crazy!!

Now when people ask me what I do, I proudly say that I am a stay-at-home mommy to my Jonah. I do things now that I never thought I’d enjoy doing…like changing the 8th poopy diaper for the day and waking up at 2 am to fill his tummy. Jonah’s demanding schedule keeps me busy, day and night. Yet I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Sure, it means that we have to say no to things that we’d like to do, and it even means that we have to sacrifice things that we’ve had or enjoyed in the past. There are still the same monthly bills to pay, and the baby only adds to them. And the little things add up quickly. The cost of a pack of diapers: $13.49. A load of laundry (and there are many!!): $1.25.

The extra income I’d earn “if I were working” could pay some of the bills, sure. But in the final analysis of things, I’d miss out on so much more than the things that we are currently sacrificing. Some things are just too precious to put a value on. Things like Jonah’s cute smiles…or his little coos when I go into his room to get him up…or the sweet cuddles he gives me after a good meal.

So I think I’ve changed my mind about the whole pay thing. It’s not true that I don’t get paid—it’s just that the pay comes in a non-traditional form from my other jobs. Instead of dollars and cents, it’s smiles and laughs. It’s things that are too costly to give up. It’s things that a word…priceless.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Pizza, I made Pizza!!!

Is it a coincident that poverty and parenting both start with P's? Amy and I have been learning to tighten our belts but the process has been fun. For instance, Amy and I both love pizza, but ordering pizza, once a favoite Birdnest past time, has become a rarer and rarer event since Dad's had to start plunking down the big bucks for diapers. To compensate for this deprivation, we learned how to make our OWN pizza! That's right, from mixing flour to kneeding dough we have mastered the secret to tossing a good pizza- we have mastered the art making of crust. Making it at home means we get to put what we want on it- a holsteins utter worth of cheese? No problem! Plus we found that making a scruptious pizza costs next to nothing, with all the money we're saving I told Amy she could book the cruise! We had such fun learning and eating that we though we ought to invite others to participate in the fun, so we are going to host a "Make your own pizza" party at our home.

The point is that changes that upset our lives can be viewed as a difficulty to endure or as opportunities to thrive. In this case being poorer doesn't mean less pizza, it means better pizza, at home, with friends. Thanks for teaching me that lesson lit'le buddy.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The 'Lamp' Post

Now that everyone has had a good opportunity to get to know Jonah through pictures, we thought you might enjoy an insight into his life and our world. 'A lamp! What has that got to do with Jonah?' The lamp pictured here is a basic black enameled lamp with brass fixtures.We got this lamp during our newlywed days, when functional dumpster gems were prized trophies of my penny pinching way. It plugs into the wall just like any other lamp and when you turn the knob- whoa, it lights up! Pretty neat, eh! Not that we really ever use it for light, the last time it was on was probably last year. In fact looking at it now I think the bulb is burned out. So really this lamp has served no purpose...until NOW!
This here lamp is so attractive that Jonah has become enamored with it. No, enamored is not strong enough-fanatic that's it-he's a fanatic friend of the lamp. If the lamp is in the room and he is in the room guess where he is looking? It's good to see Jonah can concentrate and has a good attention span, he can stare at this beautiful piece of illuminescent beauty for hours. In fact there are times when he prefers to stare at the lamp rather than pay any piece of mind to his two doting parents. What's he thinking about during these times? Amy guesses that he's working on world peace or eradicating global hunger. I'm a little more realistic, I think he just likes the contrast of a black lamp on a white wall. Which is a good sign since it means I probably won't have to be dropping $$$ on baby Einstein stuff. If he ever wears out of the lamp, I'll just head right back to the dumpster to find something else he'll like. Learn from this lesson all ye who will be new parents soon, you'll be told your child will never learn to cut straight or that he’ll fail preschool unless you buy this gizmo or play that Mozart CD. The truth is that all you need can be found next to your apartment dumpster!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Jonah at 6 weeks old, almost. He'll be 6 weeks old on Monday. Proud, you bettcha! But humble? Sure we are. We ask Lord Jesus every day for strength and wisdom. Little Jonah is our stewardship from God and we want to do best we can because it's good for baby and glorifying to God. Pray for us that everyday we learn more about loving God, Jonah, each other and our friends and family.

Even More Pictures

Geeze I'm starting to wonder if our kid thinks we have a camera perpetually attached to one eye socket. This picture happy tendency most assuredly comes from my wifes side of the family.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

New Born Pictures

I'm the happy new Mom! I'm married to the greatest husband in the world and now am mother to the greatest little boy. Scott and I have had a wonderful time as new parents though it hasn't been without it's challenges. I hope that you enjoy the posts we place here as we share the new developments in our family. Please feel free to leave feed back. It's definitly encouraging to know there are many loving people in the flock we fly with!

Now I know why I can't ever find the remote control!!---Dad