Celebrating 52

Today is the 13th anniversary of my 39th birthday. Jack Benny said he was 39 for years and got away with it. For some reason, today I realized just how silly that is. I will certainly continue to lie about my being 39, as a homage to Jack, but I know I’m not fooling anyone.

Because Sam had to work tonight, we sort of celebrated yesterday. I came home from work, caught a couple hours sleep and we went to the Saginaw Children’s Zoo. We met Sam’s sister and my nephew there.

It was quite hot out, so we took Andrew’s helmet off for the visit. Ella and I got a kick out of watching the otters, who were extra active yesterday. The were enjoying swimming around and she loved that one kept swimming by the glass window. It was too hot for the penguins to be outside, so we missed them. The wolves were also curled up in their den where we couldn’t see them either. We had fun anyway.

We always have to ride the train when we go. We bought a membership, so train rides are free. It’s a short ride, but the kids love it.

The kids love to ride the carousel too. Andrew was so hot by the time we got there, we figured we’d just keep him in the shade. Ella, of course, had to ride it like three times. Each time she rode a different horse/bunny. She loves it! It was great to watch her from the sidewalk and take pictures as she rode past me. Poor Sam, though. She was ready to throw up by the end of the third ride!

When we left to go home, Sam asked what I wanted to do for dinner. I told her I would be happy with something simple. I hadn’t used my grill yet this year, so I told her to pick up some hot dogs or brats and we’d grill them up.

We stopped at Meijer and Ella went in with Sam while I drove around with Andrew, who was napping. When they were done shopping Ella was extra excited. She helped pick out a birthday cake. I guess Sam told her my birthday was coming up and she kept asking about birthday cake. They stopped at the bakery and Sam asked if they could write “Happy Birthday” on it. Ella said it needed to say, “Happy Birthday, Daddy,” so that is what was on it.

After dinner, Sam put some candles on the cake and Ella not only sang, “Happy Birthday” to me, she helped blow out the candles!

This morning, I woke up feeling no different than yesterday. I don’t feel older, but I am. I received calls today from my dad, my brother, my oldest son, and my best friend. There are hundreds of Facebook wishes from friends. Some are long and heartfelt, others short and sweet. I have messages from Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram with birthday wishes, and many text messages, too. There is no way I’ll be able to respond to them all!

I certainly felt special the past couple days. I’m one very blessed man!

Back – But Not 100%

Despite the few blogs I had scheduled to be published, I really only got to jump on here to blog a couple times over the past few weeks because of Covid. So I figured I would fill you in on what’s been happening …

Daddy Daughter Pirate Adventure

Prior to my Covid diagnosis, I was planning on taking Ella to a Daddy/Daughter Pirate adventure. I took the Tuesday off and worked Monday night instead. The Sunday before, I didn’t really feel great. I felt like I was getting a cold. Ella was diagnosed that Friday with a double ear infection. I was worried we wouldn’t be able to go because she was sick.

Monday I felt a bit worse and took a home Covid test. It was negative and I went to work. While at work, I just felt stuffed up. I was coughing a bit, and just achy. I went home and slept. When I woke up, I was still hoping to get to go to the Pirate adventure, however, I just felt like crap. My wife talked me into going to Urgent Care, where they swabbed me and gave me the Covid and Flu diagnosis.

It rained Monday and they called Tuesday to tell me that they had moved the pirate adventure to the next day. It didn’t matter, I wasn’t going to be able to go.

Mother’s Day

I’m glad that I planned ahead this year. So often, I wait until a couple days before to go out and get cards and presents. This year, I ordered Sam something online and had hoped to get her a few other things, but thanks to Covid, I was only able to give her the gift I ordered.

I saw this Facebook and thought it was perfect. It was a framed sign, printed on burlap that said, “My greatest blessings call me Mommy.” Under that I was able to put the kids names and birthdays. It came out better than I thought.

Because we both were in quarantine, we had to place our grocery order online and have it delivered. Because I couldn’t get her a cake, Sam ordered one and we had it after dinner. We were able to spend a little bit of time outside in the sun, hoping the extra vitamin D would help with the Covid.

Mother’s Day 2022

The Kids

Thank goodness the sun has been out a lot this week. The kids have been loving being outside on the swings, playing in the yard or taking brief walks around the neighborhood.

Nana stopped by with some clothes she got for the kids on day and found Ella some “Princess Dresses.” She puts one on and then takes it off so she can put the other one on. I’m not sure what she was doing when I snapped this picture, but I love it. I can’t wait to be able to dress up for a daddy daughter dance!

Earlier this week, Ella was outside with Sam and heard a bird. She told Sam it was a “Nutpecker!” Sam did a double take and asked her again what kind of bird it was. Again, the answer came back, “Nutpecker!” I’ll just add that to the list of wonderfully funny things my daughter says. Nutpecker = Woodpecker.

Andrew turned 7 months old this week. He’s been crawling all over the place and is doing everything he can to stand up. He will pull himself up with the help of couch cushions, toys, pillows, you name it. He is able to stand for 30 seconds at a time, but then usually falls. It drives us crazy. Case in point:

Ella got a Doc McStuffins doctor kit. It comes with the typical doctor toys – stethoscope, otoscope, fake shot, thermometer, bandage and bag. Take a look at the shot, which is the second from the right in the picture below.

See how it is flat? Ok, good. Andrew was standing up next to me on the floor. I was sitting and he had pulled himself up and was standing. He quickly turned and fell and faceplanted right on the corner of that shot. Almost immediately, under his eye (at the top of his cheek bone) began to bruise. Then it began to swell. There was a huge bump under it. At first I thought he broke his cheek.

With 30 minutes before the Urgent Care closed, Sam ran him up to get checked out. He had a hematoma under his eye. Basically, it was bleeding under the skin. So he got his first shiner.

We were told to call his doc and follow up. The doc stated that she didn’t need to see him, but we should have him looked at by an eye doctor to be sure nothing was wrong on the inside of the eye. So he also had his first visit to the eye doc this week.

The good news is that the eye looks great and he will be fine.

He followed up with the Orthotics folks today about his helmet and they said he is progressing so well that he probably will be able to get the helmet off in a couple weeks. This is fantastic news, since we were planning on him having it on through July.

My Crazy Co-Workers

I was cleared to return to work today. The afternoon tech was off, so when I walked in I was the only one in the building. When I walked into the tech room, I was greeted with a masterpiece created by my co-workers.

They basically went through my Facebook page and found every ridiculous picture of me and created a “Covid Keith” board. It certainly made me laugh. I also realize that I make a lot of silly faces. There is a story behind the Alfalfa picture that I will share another time.

I suppose things are sort of getting back to normal-ish.

A Fun and Busy Weekend

To say this weekend was not a hectic one would be a lie. In all honesty, the entire month has been busy for Sam and me. Sam has been running back and forth to various doc appointments and helmet appointments, plus helping her folks out with her sister. Both of us are running on little to no sleep. How we are making in through our nights at work and our days at home, I really have no idea.

Sam was up early on Saturday. I cam home and slept about 3 hours before having to get up and get my son. I picked him up at his mom’s house and then we drove to Sam’s parents’ house. She was there with Ella and Andrew helping out with her sister. I picked up Ella and came back home.

It was beautiful on Saturday! There was a lot of sunshine and it was close to 80 degrees. Ella wanted to play outside, so she ran around the yard playing with her toys as Dimitri and I worked on a couple projects. The biggest project was the swing set that Sam bought for the kids. It took about 3 hours to put together and I was pretty impressed with it.

Back in the day, I remember my dad having to dig or drill holes for the swing set poles to set into. Then he’d have to pour cement in them and it had to dry before we could use it. This set was neat. It had “shoes” that went on the bottom of each leg. There was a stake that you “screwed” into the ground and then you bolted the shoe to the stake. That thing is solid, let me tell you! I was pretty impressed.

Ella loves going to the park and swinging on the swings and Andrew had never been on one. We ordered a toddler swing to go put on it (it came with one) so both kids could swing at the same time. They absolutely loved it!!

The kids got to swing for a bit and then we went in and had dinner. We all went to bed early, because we were all wiped out.

Sam had to work Sunday, so she was up for a bit and then went back to try to get some sleep. So I decided to take the kids for a walk before it rained. Ella wanted to take her baby doll for a walk too. So I loaded up Andrew in the double stroller and she grabbed her baby doll and we walked the neighborhood.

What made me really smile was to see the people who were passing by in cars looking at Ella, waving at her and smiling. It was awesome. She really enjoyed being able to walk her baby. After we got home, we played outside for a while. Andrew was so interested in everything. He loved just playing around on the blanket out on the lawn.

I had planned on Dimitri staying until the evening, but I guess he had some dinner to go to. So Dante’ came to pick him up and take him to the dinner. Dante’ is working a lot and going to college, so it is rare for me to see them both together. Even though it was just for a few minutes, it was nice to have them both there. I had to fight them to get them to pose for a picture!

Dimitri helped me put the swing set together and also helped me take down the remainder of the Christmas lights. Yes, I know, it is almost May! That should tell you just how crazy life has been our way. On the days I wanted to get out and do it, it was either freezing, raining, and most recently – snowing! I’m glad they are finally down!

He also helped me move some furniture around. Andrew is having some separation issues. It has been a challenge to do anything without him attached to us. If we are not in the same room with him, he loses it. He’s never really slept well if it isn’t in our arms or in our bed. So we moved the crib to our bedroom, got him his own sound machine, and hoped that he’d start sleeping in it.

Yep. That’s his crib … at the end of our bed! I’m really hoping that he gets into that crib sooner than later. Sam and I would welcome a night of sleep without getting a helmet to the head or kicks in the stomach.

Finally, some big news that is NOT family related…

As a life long Detroit Tiger Fan, it was very cool to hear that Miguel Cabrera joined an elite club on Saturday. He got his 3000th hit! Miggy has certainly made baseball fun to watch here in Michigan. Now, we just need to get back to the World Series – and win it! Congrats, Miggy!!

Nice Day For A Birthday and a Half

Monday is usually my day for getting stuff done. I do laundry. I fold laundry. I load the dishwasher and run it. I pick up the living room and vacuum. I clean up the kitchen and clear the counters. None of that got done today.

My day started with getting Andrew out of bed, fixing him a bottle, and putting his helmet on. Ella was up shortly after and mom brought her home pancakes from McDonald’s for breakfast.

It is Andrew’s 1/2 birthday (he is six months old today). We measured him, weighed him, and put him in his special onesie and took our Milestone pictures. We decided to take his pictures in his helmet so we’d remember it.

Today, my oldest son turns 20. He spent the day with his friends bowling and then playing games at his house. He is usually a late sleeper, so I waited until about 11 to call him. I used video chat and when he answered he had his mask on and was obviously in class at college! I felt bad that I interrupted and told him I would call him later!

The temperature outside was about 60, so I decided to take the kids on our first walk through the neighborhood. It’s a bit different with the double stroller, but it was just perfect. We got to see neighbors outside with their kids, raking up leftover fall leaves, and just relaxing on their porches.

It felt good to walk. I know that walking really helped me drop some weight last year, and I hope it will again this year. I just hope Ella will allow me to push her in the stroller. She loves being able to just walk.

Andrew seemed to really enjoy being outside. I bundled him up in a sweatshirt and covered him in a blanket and he cooed through most of the walk. He started to doze at one point, but he made it through the walk taking in all the sites.

When we were walking up the driveway, my oldest called me back on the video chat. He was excited to be out of class and was going to check out the video game store. He got to see his brother and sister and couldn’t believe when Ella said, “Happy birthday, brother.”

After lunch, the kiddos napped – Ella in her crib and Andrew in my arms. Tonight is the first night he has to sleep with his helmet, so I’m anticipating a rough night. He has been doing well with it, so I hope I am wrong.

My favorite moment of the day was captured by the camera. Ella wanted to get her picture taken, too, when we were getting Andrew’s taken. So we put her in the crib next to him and I caught this magical moment….

Precious!

It’s Just Around The Corner

Spring!

I enjoy stupid puns. Every time someone says that spring is just around the corner, I think of the above picture!

Despite having a big snow a few days ago, the temperatures are rising and the snow has pretty much melted away. We actually got over 60 degrees today! When I left to go to work, I was pleasantly surprised at the temperature:

What a wonderful day to get out and enjoy! Of course, I had to sleep through most of it. It was nice to walk out of the bedroom to fresh air. Sam had the windows open in the house and there was a nice breeze in the living room.

On my way into work, it was very obvious to me that people were loving being outside! Just some of the things I witnessed as I drove in:

  • The park was crowded with parents and children.
  • Many people were walking their dogs.
  • Pairs of mom’s pushing kids in strollers and chatting with each other.
  • Two people playing catch at the park.
  • Extra long lines at the ice cream stand down the road.
  • Countless people walking without jackets.
  • Plenty of cars driving with Windows down.
  • People reading books while sitting on their front porch.

Earlier today, while I slept, Sam actually was able to get out the double stroller and she took her first run of the season. Ella already loves talking walks, but this was Andrew’s first jog through the neighborhood. Ella told me when I got up that she got to see her “puppy friend” (an old bassett hound we see on our walks).

I know I am excited for warmer weather! I love my walks with Ella and I’m sure Andrew will enjoy them, too!

I also know that I may be rushing things a bit. If I “uncrop” the temperature picture a little, and you take a good look at it, you will see that Old Man Winter isn’t quite done with us …

Stupid Snow!

I guess I just need to keep thinking positive and thinking spring!

The Last Year Has Been One-derful

When I get home in the morning, my little girl will be two years old. My wife probably didn’t intend on making me cry, but she sent me a picture of her sleeping in her crib with the message “Last picture as a 1 year old,” but she did.

I wish I had taken the day off tomorrow. I didn’t because I had to save my PTO time for a surgery I am having this month. I want to spend the entire day with her. I want to celebrate HER! Sadly, I have to work tomorrow night, so I will probably miss most of her day.

As I look back over the last year, it is amazing to see how much she has grown and just how far she has come. Some highlights:

  • First birthday at the Sea Life Aquarium
  • Amazing professional First Birthday/Cake Smash photoshoot
  • First haircut with Miss Sherry
  • Family Easter Egg hunt
  • Finding out she was going to be a big sister
  • First time eating corn on the cob
  • First time bowling (with big brothers)
  • Family visit to the Detroit and Saginaw Zoos
  • First trip to the library
  • Drawing her first picture
  • Daddy/Daughter picnic
  • First surgery – ear tubes
  • Outside adventures (trampoline fun, walks around the neighborhood, sidewalk chalk drawings, sandbox fun, visits to the park, playing on the splashpad, swimming in her kiddie pool, playing in leaf piles, sledding and making snow angels)
  • Arrival of Little Brother and official promotion to Big Sister
  • Family visit with Santa at Cabella’s
  • Daddy/Daughter trip to Bronners to buy the annual Christmas ornament
  • Visits from Aunt Margaret, Cousin Marissa, Papa and Grandma, Uncle Chris, and so many others.

What a One-derful year it has been!

The “terrible twos” don’t scare me. I just hope that time slows down a bit.

Yesterday, I kissed my one year old for the last time. When I get home in the morning, I will kiss my two year old for the first time. I can’t wait to see her….

You Give Me Fever …

Been a crazy week here. Ella wasn’t feeling all that great Monday night and then woke up Tuesday with a 104 temp. We began to alternate the Tylenol/Motrin every four hours and were told that if the fever continued on Wednesday to do a Tele-Med visit. Wednesday morning, the fever was still there, so we did the video visit with the doc, who insisted that we bring her in.

Once we got to the office, the fever had broke, because we had given her Motrin before we left. The doc checked her out and she was diagnosed with another ear infection. We were told when she was born that she may have issues with her ears (There were issues with her newborn hearing tests.). Sam immediately asked about ear tubes. Did you know you have to get 6 ear infections in 12 months before they will even consider putting tubes in? I didn’t.

At any rate, she was sent home with an antibiotic and she’s been doing better. By Saturday, she was like her normal self. I was called off work Friday night, so I was able to get some sleep. Saturday was sunny and hot. We had heard about a splash pad near by and we decided to take Ella there. She loved it!

At first, she was a bit apprehensive, but once she saw other kids running around, she was screaming with joy and running all over the place.

We all got a little sun Saturday. I was hoping to go back there today with her while Sam slept, but she spiked her fever again. I kept her inside most of the day. I made a trip out to Meijer with her to pick up a few things and when I got back she walked right to her stroller. She signed “more” to me, and I knew we had to take a walk. Because it was so sunny, I didn’t want her out there too long, so we did a quick walk around the block.

After her nap, she wanted to go outside. I had filled her pool, and figured she might want to just play in it. She sat in it for a bit, but for the most part, she wandered around the yard, playing on her slide, and “sunbathing”

She’s been on the antibiotic for a few days now. I am hoping that she feels well enough to go to the splash pad tomorrow.

Memorial Day Weekend Recap

Pet Peeve

I have a few pet peeves. One of those is people who say “Happy Memorial Day.” To me, this is an example of someone who just doesn’t get what the day signifies. Memorial Day is not like Christmas, Thanksgiving, or a birthday. Memorial Day is a day for remembrance and honor! I saw “Happy Memorial Day” countless times on Facebook, on TV, and heard it on the radio. Please stop. For those who need a refresher – this is for you:

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for honoring and mourning the U.S. military personnel who have died in the performance of their military duties.  Please remember that when you are having your back yard BBQ next year.

A Busy Weekend

As most of you know, Sam is 5 months pregnant. We decided to stay close to home for the holiday weekend. There were a lot of things to do around the house and some shopping that needed to be done. We took a trip to Sam’s Club and picked up a bunch of stuff there, and then ventured up to Birch Run so I could get a few pairs of scrub pants for work.

The weather was just beautiful. Ella got plenty of time to play in the sandbox and on the trampoline this weekend. We also got to go out and walk the neighborhood a few times. One walk had a purpose.

Our neighborhood has a “group” on Facebook. A neighbor posted a picture of his daughter in front of her Melissa and Doug Lemonade Stand with the request to “make her day” by purchasing a glass for just fifty cents!

NOT my neighbor’s daughter…

We grabbed the stroller and walked a few streets over and grabbed three glasses of lemonade. I made sure to give her an extra fifty cents as a tip! Ella loved it!! So did we. As we started to walk away, another neighbor drove up to purchase some. We were certainly glad to help make her day.

Cool Treat

I think ice cream and summer holiday weekends go together. We decided that we wanted to grab ice cream on Monday. It was about 6pm, and I knew that the local Dairy Queen was gonna have a line of cars out to the road. I remembered that about 7 miles down the road, there was a little ice cream shop. They serve regular ice cream and soft serve, and since Sam was craving Moose Trax, we drove there.

The line was not long at all and we were at the window in less than 5 minutes. This place gives you plenty of ice cream! Their scoops are huge! Sam got her Moose Trax, I got mint chocolate chip, and we got Ella a scoop of chocolate (with sprinkles). She started to eat it at one of the picnic tables, and then they started to get busier, so we drove home to finish. Ella loved her ice cream. After she got toward the end, she actually picked up the bowl and started to drink it like soup or something!

Another First

We cooked out for the first time on Monday. I grilled up some burgers and hot dogs. I also cooked up some potatoes on the grill. Sam cooked up some corn on the cob. We decided to let Ella try some. She put the holders on the ends of the corn, Sam showed her how to hold it and she was off! She pretty much ate two cobs of corn. I wish I knew how to post a video on here. I took some video and asked if she liked her corn (as she was munching away on it). She shook her head “no” and kept eating, only to put it down and say “mmmmmm!” Love this girl!!

Bonus Vacation Day

Because the holiday falls on a day that I don’t normally work, those of us who work on Tuesday were given Tuesday off. Sadly, Sam still had to work, but I took advantage of the day with Ella. We went for a walk around the neighborhood, and then spent all morning at the park. She got to swing on the swings, play by the slide, walk by the creek, talk to the dogs that were out being walked, and run around like crazy!

We always start at the swings, and when I said it was time to go, she signed “more” and pointed to the swings. I took her back over to the swings and she got to swing a little bit more. She LOVES swinging! I was able to snap a picture that I feel sums up what summer should feel like:

Loving summer!

Back to Work

I have to be back at work tonight, but I got to spend some extra daddy/daughter time with Ella as mommy slept. We usually play on the floor with her toys. Today, she wanted to go down the little slide we have in the house. She must have done that about 35 times. Then she grabbed the stuffed Curious George my dad gave her and sat him on the couch next to me. She climbed down, grabbed a book and started “reading” to George. It was so sweet.

Listen up, George! I’m a Pout Pout Fish …

It has been a while, since we had a nice family weekend together. What a blessing to spend it with my wife and daughter.

A Morning Spring Walk

I’ve been struggling with a few things lately. I decided to listen to my own advice and take a step back and look around and appreciate the little things. So this past week, I put Ella in her stroller and we took a 2 and a half mile walk around the neighborhood.

She loves going for a walk and it was very beneficial for me as well. The first thing I did was focus on the sounds of spring, which were all around us as I walked!

The Sounds

As I was putting Ella in her stroller, the sounds of the birds singing rang loudly in my ears.

As I listened to them, I could here the songs of different types of birds. One, in particular, reminded me of early mornings in Caseville. I remember walking out of grandma’s trailer and hearing this one particular bird sound. Funny how you can remember that almost 40 years later.

At one point during our walk, the church bells began to chime.

It is not odd to hear the church bells/chimes begin to play hymns during the day. I recognized the hymn as being Blessed Assurance.

The weather was nice, so naturally, some neighbors were out mowing the grass.

This allowed me to experience not only the sounds of the lawnmower, but the smell of fresh cut grass.

There were also plenty of neighbors out working in the garage. I loved walking by and hearing the sounds of a small radio playing from inside the garage.

I remember my dad always had the radio on when we were outside on the weekends. If he was washing the car, working on the yard, painting, cleaning the garage, or fixing something – the radio was always on. I remember many Sundays listening to Casey Kasem and American Top 40 while we helped outside.

The Sights

Along with the sounds of spring, there were plenty of sights, too!

Ella always gets a kick out of the squirrels running up a tree or around a yard.

There are plenty of squirrels in the neighborhood – and many that run around my yard!

The Robin is the Michigan State Bird. We always look for the “first robin of spring.” They are all over now. They were hopping all around the yards and bird feeders we see along our route.

Along the way, we also saw many neighbors out doing yard work.

I truly wish that I had the time and energy to do what some of my neighbors do! I’m lucky if I get the leaves out of the flowerbeds by late summer! It is SO much work! Yet, there are neighbors who line their walkways with tulips, fill their flower beds with every flower imaginable, and have hanging flowers that are beautiful all spring and summer long! We bought hanging plants one year and they died within two weeks. I obviously do not have a green thumb.

Kudos to my neighbors! I love looking at the product of your hard work when I walk.

There is one house I always walk by with Ella. I do it because there is always this old hound dog outside.

The dog is either laying along the fence or up on the back porch. It always looks up when we walk by, but it is old and content to just lay there soaking up the sun. We have no idea what the dog’s name is, but she gets a kick out of seeing that dog on our walk.

Sadly, the dog is really old and I’m not sure how many more walks we will be seeing him/her out there.

The last thing I really enjoy seeing when I am out walking is people sitting out on the front porch. I’m not sure why more people don’t do this, but it seems to be more and more rare.

Before Ella, we would sit out on the porch in the morning and drink coffee. That doesn’t happen too much anymore. There is something about sitting out with a hot cup of coffee, my Bible, or a newspaper that is so relaxing. I don’t need a rocking chair, any chair will do.

I guess the only beef I have with sitting on the porch lately is the recent increase in the number of bees and wasps. I’ve walked around the house and looked to see if there are nests, but I can’t seem to find any. I read somewhere that peppermint oil will repel them. Maybe I need to find a way to put that around the porch?

The walk around the neighborhood really helped me relax. Noticing the sights and sounds instead of being lost in thought was a big part of that. I’m looking forward to my next walk …

Weekend Wrap Up

Michigan weather has been just beautiful the past week or so. It looks like we’ll have one more nice day and the temps will drop. Saturday, while the baby was napping and my son was doing homework, I went out and cleaned up the leaves from the driveway. Later that afternoon, my kids and I got to get out and take a walk around the neighborhood. He enjoys pushing his sister in the stroller. It is a good time for us to just catch up.

I decided to take advantage of the weather and get the Christmas lights up. The more I thought about what I wrote in a recent blog, the more I was convinced that putting up the lights early would bring about some happiness in a year that has really sucked. My son and I strung all the lights out on the side porch. The nice temps made it easy to do and with him helping, it only took me half the time.

I got some of the decorations up out front, but I have a few bad strands that I need to check fuses on before I string them up. I am thinking of adding the strands of white LED lights that I had strung along the fence for our 4th of July party. I usually only put the lights along the rails on the porch, so it should be pretty easy.

After I dropped my son off and the baby woke up from her nap, we spent most of the day outside. We took our stroll through the neighborhood and walked a bit longer than normal. I had to laugh because when we got back home, she totally kicked her foot up like she was relaxing!

After our walk, we played in the leaves (until she tried to start eating them), played on the slide, sat on the trampoline, and then just sat in the grass. She was standing next to me in on the back lawn and I looked up and saw our shadows. For some reason, looking at them it hit me how fast she is growing up. I can’t believe she will be 9 months old tomorrow! The shadow was a reminder to enjoy every little moment like this…

Heavenly Jeopardy?

I have never read a bad thing about Alex Trebek. Every interview I watched of him, he always seemed like a wonderful man. With his passing, there has been an outpouring of wonderful tributes to him by celebrities all over the country. A friend pointed out that Trebek and the great Sean Connery passed away within a week of each other.

One of my favorite sketches on SNL was Celebrity Jeopardy. Will Ferrell played Alex Trebek and Darrell Hammond played Sean Connery. In the sketch, Connery has this unreal hatred for Trebek and always made countless jabs about Trebek’s mother. It was always a treat to see Norm MacDonald playing Burt Reynolds in these sketches.

I always waited to see how Connery would take a category and make it dirty – for example:

Real Category: Let It Snow. Connery asks for: Le Tits Now

Real Category: The Pen Is Mighter Connery asks about: The Penis Mightier

I truly hope that SNL doesn’t miss the opportunity to do some kind of tribute to Connery and Trebek this week. I can see a Heavenly round of Celebrity Jeopardy with Ferrell, Hammond, and MacDonald being very funny!

Same Old Lions

Sunday, I got to see bits and pieces of the Detroit Lions game. It was awful, as usual. I saw this on Facebook today, and had to share. I know that this is totally supposed to be more of a political jab, and I am not posting it to be political, I just thing it is pretty funny!

The Election

It was certainly great to hear that voter turnout was so good. Whether your candidate won or lost, if you voted, you did your part! Over the past couple decades, we’ve seen a lot of division. We’ve seen a lot of lost trust in the system and the government. With every election, I hope and pray that the elected officials will do something to bring us together. I may have posted this picture before, but I thought it was one of the most powerful that I had seen this year:

In 2016, after the election, I wrote something on Facebook. It came up in my Facebook Memories today. It is worth sharing:

Maybe we are family. Maybe we went to high school together. Maybe I went to college with you. Maybe we worked together. Maybe we bowled together. Maybe you and I like the same movies or music. Maybe we met at a conference.

However we met, however we know each other, you are here because you are my friend. You and I are Americans. We are citizens of the greatest country in the world. One of the great things about being an American is that we have the freedoms to believe what we want and vote for who we want. We don’t always have to agree. I say this because no matter where you stand as a Republican, Democrat, or Independent…..as a Baptist, Catholic, Lutheran nondenominationalist or Dispensationalist….. heterosexual or homosexual …..male or female…..employed or unemployed….union or nonunion…..I don’t care!!! You are my friend and I am glad you are my friend. You have the right and the freedom to believe what you want and voice your opinion. Knowing that we may not agree is ok with me. There are other things we have in common that led us to be friends. I haven’t deleted any friend or family member because of their vote, because of their faith, because of their sexual preference, or because of their job or financial status. Thank you for being my friend.

Life would be pretty boring if we were all the same! A quote from Andy Hargreaves came across my timeline today and I want to share: “If we were all on the same page, no one’s reading the whole book”!

So what if your candidate lost? So what? One of the first thing I learned as a kid was there are winners and losers in games and elections. So what do we do now? You take the words of a pastor friend of mine who reminded me that “The guy you voted for may not have won, but you should still pray for him.”

So that’s what I am going to do. Here are the Bible verses to back that up:

I Timothy 2: 1-3

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;

God Bless America!