Sunday, April 6, 2014

Great Sunday Message

I posted before how we enjoy going to St. Augustine’sEpiscopal Church.  Today, Father AJ read about Lazarus.  And his sermon… Father AJ started it with, “Is it me or does there appear to be a lot of interest in zombies these days?  I’m sure you have heard about the show, “The Walking Dead”… I haven’t watched it, but someone told me that it was a really good show and actually very theological in depth, to question what is meant to be human.  This didn’t surprise me but the person who said it did surprise me… a fellow Episcopalian priest.”  The congregation laughed.

My husband said, “I think Father AJ is the only priest who would bring up that show for his sermon.”  It was great and so was the message.  Father AJ went on to share how God is not in the end, the resurrection.  God is in the here and now, through the difficult times.  Father AJ asked the congregation to be in the here and now with God, as He is with us, not just to go through the motions… not to walk through life as zombies, just going through the motions on autopilot.   Because when we are on autopilot and numb to the pain, we are also numb to the joy in life.


Not trying to be preachy, but I just really enjoyed the message.  Oh and when Father AJ said to “wake up” and be in the here and now, Gregory picked this perfect moment to cry out (loudly).  Thankfully everyone laughed!





Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Early Easter Pictures

Instead of waiting for the weekend with the long lines or waiting right before Easter, I took Gregory with my parents to get his Easter picture.  Of course, I had to take some pictures at home first. :)


In the below picture, he has two stuffed toy rabbits.  The Easter bunny basket is so cute!  Greg's mom lent this basket to us for Gregory to use when he hunts for Easter eggs.



Next picture - he his flirting!




Investigating his basket!


The blue bunny is his favorite


"Here, Mommy, I'll share with you."


One of my favorite pictures - "Mommy pick me up" - smiles and arms


We went to the mall for the Easter Bunny.  I thought the huge basket was neat looking.  Gregory loved SEEING the Easter Bunny.....



But he wasn't so keen on being held by the big bunny.  Lol


After the pictures, they gave out bunny hats.  As you can tell, it didn't stay on his head for very long!


Love this last picture - "haha, I got away with something" look as he took off the ears



Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Love Thy Neighbor

An article I wrote about "finding a church" home was posted.  (You're welcome to read it, by clicking here.  Sorry, the giveaway is already over.  I'm delinquent in sharing the post.)

When I interviewed Father AJ, we talked about "loving thy neighbor" and being accepting of people. But then I asked Father AJ, "What about people in your life where you have tried time and time again... and your offer of friendship is constantly rejected?"

Father AJ said, "Some people are in fact unhealthy to have in an individual's life.  When we say "love thy neighbor".. sometimes the best way to show this love is to pray sincerely for them, but not to have them in your life."

This made me feel a lot better.  I can do that.

I will also say a prayer for the neighbor who left a hand-written message on my door.  We just recently trimmed our crepe myrtle trees.  This is the time of year to do so.  My parents trim their crepe myrtles every year and they come out strong and healthy.  My neighbor went on a rant to say that this was horrible to do to the trees and that it is known as "crepe murder!"

Oh my gosh!  How rude!  I'll include the neighbor in my prayers.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Letter to My Son

Dear Son,

It’s been a little while since Mommy wrote a letter to you.  It appears we have something in common, sinus congestion.  You get that from me, sorry.  We have battled the sneezes, coughs, running noses for a while now as Mother Nature battles with winter and spring.  Yesterday we were in shorts and today we are in jackets again.

Mommy has plenty of pictures to post, but first let’s share what happened yesterday.  You were standing up, holding on to the side of the exer-saucer.  Mommy was singing to you and you gave such sweet smiles that Mommy had to grab her “camera” (i.e. iPhone) and snap pictures. 





Mommy started doing the animal sounds, which you love. “And the lion goes ROAR.. and the puppy goes Ruff Ruff.. And the… Oh Crap!”  Well, that was out of the blue different, but you surprised Mommy!  There’s a nice space between the exer-saucer and the sofa, where Mommy was sitting.  You let go of the exer-saucer, took a STEP on your own, not holding on to anything and walked to the sofa!

Daddy came into the room at the end of the walk.  He yelled, “DID YOU GET IT ON VIDEO!”  Umm, no, because I really was not expecting you to walk.  But I did manage to get this blurry action shot! 



Totally made my day.  We tried to get you to repeat walking on your own, but you refused.  You would stand and then crawl to where you wanted to go and then stand up against another piece of furniture.  That’s Ok.  Mommy knows you can do it.  This is at your own pace.  You are testing waters and we love witnessing it.

Now that the excitement is out of the way, Mommy needs to do an update on your one-year old doctor appointment.  Your length was 31, which is still above average.  Head measurement was 18 and weight was 22 pounds 5 ounces which is in the average range.  You don’t have a tummy/belly that a lot of kids have.   Daddy is worried that you aren’t gaining enough weight.  But the doctor didn’t seem worried.  You had four shots.  Mommy cried too.  (Is it any wonder that children grow up to have “white coat syndrome” when talking with doctors?!)



After your shots, we went to Caffe du Monde for coffee and beignets.  This was "feel good food" for Mommy and Daddy after seeing you cry from the shots.  Umm, sorry, we didn't see the sign until after taking the picture!



Even though you aren’t over weight, you are into real food now.  But it takes you a while to swallow.  You will chew and chew and chew and sometimes you store the food in your cheeks or the top of your mouth and if you let the food get too much in storage then you yell.  Mommy has to fish the food out with her finger and pray that you don’t bite her in the process.  Now, if the food is soft, you have no problems swallowing, but it’s mostly meat that causes you an issue.  The thing is, you WANT the food, but you wince when you swallow meats.

When you are finished with the food and there’s still food left on the tray, it’s play time.  Food on the floor, food in your hair.  Sometimes you put the food in your lap or along the side of your legs in the high chair.  The funny thing is.. you remember the food is on the side and when we take you out of the high chair, you reach around to grab the food.

You transitioned very smoothly from baby formula to whole milk.  Daddy buys organic milk, so you don’t get extra growth hormones, etc from the regular whole milk.  We are trying to get you to go from bottle to sippy cup, but you aren’t liking it much at all.  The cup becomes a toy to toss around.



The world is your toy.  Opening and closing doors makes you smile, especially when Mommy says, “open… close…”  And you are definitely an outdoors baby.  You smile when Daddy takes you outside and yell when he brings you back inside.  Now that the weather is nicer, we are going on strolls.  You love it.  Unlike car rides, in the stroller, you won’t fall asleep.  Your eyes are wide open, soaking in the world.



A few weeks ago, we took you to see horses.  Daddy was holding you up high to see the horse in the stable.  Your eyes got saucer wide and your hands dug into Daddy.  Daddy said, “It was as if Gregory was saying, “Do you see that!  It’s the biggest dog EVER!”  The horse’s face was as big as Gregory’s body.”



In the past few weeks you have had many visitors and I have lots of pictures to share with relatives.  That will be in the coming posts.  But for now, Daddy will say this is already too long of a letter :)

Love Always,

Mommy

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Ups and Downs






This morning we headed to the church for Gregory’s Baptism at St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church.  Family and friends filled five pews and Gregory was in a good mood.  



The baptism was to take place during the 10:30am mass… after the first reading, the choir started to sing.


But something didn’t sound right.  The choir staggered to a stop and people turned to the back of the church.  A man was gasping for breath.  Father AJ asked, “Is there a nurse or doctor in the church?”  Our friend, Sally, was one of the three nurses to assist. 

CPR was given to the church member, Clifford.  Father AJ lead the congregation in prayers for Clifford and his family.  People were crying.  Father AJ asked for a moment of silence and prayers as the ambulance arrived.  Father AJ came up to our pew and said he wouldn’t be able to continue with the service and if it would be ok to postpone the baptism.  Of course we understood. 

There was such sadness in the church.  It was in the air.  Sally came up to me as the congregation left the church and said, “It’s been a long time since I’ve come to church to pray and you put me to work!”  (She’s a retired RN.)  Sally made me smile, which is a gift in such a moment.

Even though we didn’t have the baptism that morning, we asked our family and friends to still meet at our home for the celebration of our son’s first birthday.  It helped having family and friends to lift the spirits.  Greg and I counted 31 guests for our son’s first birthday!  How awesome to feel such love for our little boy.

















Upset because I took the cupcake away.  Lol




Around 1:30, Father AJ called us on Greg’s cell.  Greg asked about Clifford and sadly, we learned that he passed away.  Father AJ asked about rescheduling the baptism and asked about this afternoon.  Greg said, “If you want to schedule it for another weekend, we completely understand.”  Father AJ responded, “I think I need the baptism to end this day on a high note.” 

I thought for sure Gregory would scream during the baptism.  But he was so well behaved!  Not one cry and he didn’t mind Father AJ holding him. 






It was a crazy day of ups and downs.  This is life.  This is love.  This is loss.  This is rebirth in baptism.  In case I haven’t told you, I love you.  I appreciate you.  Thank you for your love and for loving my son.  Thank you for your friendship and kindness and support.  You’re precious.

Love,

Aleta

Friday, February 21, 2014

Article about Baby Proofing

The article I submitted for baby proofing the house was published, right before Gregory's birthday!  How exciting is that?  There are some cute pictures of Gregory in the article.  I'd love to get feedback on if there's anything I missed for baby proofing ideas.  We're still in the processing and realizing now that Gregory has a very long stretch/reach and once he is walking... oh heaven help us!

Click here to read the article.

Gregory was playing in his crib, so I took a few pictures... Tell me, can you see the TEETH marks that our son is leaving on his crib??  When he gets older, he will want to fix that, being the bed is a lifetime one.  Lol.

Mommy, I want the camera!


Noooo, I didn't make those teeth marks.