Thursday, January 24, 2008

Sick, Sick, Sick

Isn't there a limit to how many times you can blow your nose in two weeks? There should be. Any pictures we've taken of Tessa recently have her mouth hanging open so she can breathe. If anyone had been taking my picture, it would be the same. Or I might be coughing up a lung. Somehow Jake has managed to avoid catching whatever we have. I sure hope he remains successful.
Catching Flies and Climbing in Baskets

This last Friday we went to a J. Reuben Clark Law Society dinner while Tessa hung out with some friends. It had been a little while since Jake and I had been on a date, so it was nice. Plus, I'm a sucker for catered dinner.
Basically it's been gray and cold outside, which mixed with sickness is just a downer. But today....even though it's cold, the sun is gloriously shining. I'll take it. And for my friends and fam in Utah, I'll quit using the word "cold" because I know you have us beat on that one. How about "mildly chilly"? Will you take that?
On MLKJ day we stripped some falling off plastic things from our front door (the picture below is after we ripped them off) and painted it. The green paint was starting to show under the broken plastic decor, which didn't go so well with the brown paint. So, we puttied the best we could on a metal door, sanded it, and painted it Coalmine. It still looks like someone shot it up with a shotgun because of my awesome puttying job, but it looks better than it did. Only now I've noticed that all the front doors in our neighborhood have some style to them. Not ours. It's flat (relatively) and dark. I've got to find something to hang on the front.














Tessa's big thing lately (besides walking--which she's daring to more of on her own) is her Baby Signing Time video. I'm not kidding when I say she asks to watch it. She rocks her arms and "sings" and then points to the television. I'll start singing one of the songs; she'll nod and smile. She LOVES this video. It's a half hour of learning basic signs. She has down "cracker" and will sometimes do "eat", "more", and "baby". It's really fun except for the fact that songs have been stuck in my head for a week and half. I have to pull her away from the television during "her program" because she seems to think it's better two centimeters from her face. I'm just glad she's addicted to Baby Signing Time and not Celebrity Apprentice or something. :)

Enthralled with the Signing Time Diaper Dance

My side of the family won't need an explanation regarding the next picture but others probably do. There is a curse we Riches have. It's called the Rich Crack. We try our best to avoid it, deny it, pretend it skipped over us, but then one of us gets caught with our droopy drawers and reminds the rest that it's just in our blood. Too busy with Signing Time to care, Tessa embraces part of her family heritage...

And finally.... a video. Every night before bed we brush Tessa's teeth --or attempt to brush her teeth as she sucks the baby paste off the brush. We let her finish her brushing. I was trying to get out of the video, but it didn't work. Sorry.

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Saturday, January 12, 2008

So Close

She's getting there. For the last four nights, Jake and I have had walking practice with Tessa . She seems to not be as hesitant about the whole falling situation with both of us on the floor with her. She'll find some toy and then she'll take it back and forth to show us. She seems more interested in the toy, but she's still getting a little more coordinated each night. She gets excited with the "game", so the beginning balance is pretty hard to find. She also leans heavily to one side or tries to walk on her tip toes sometimes, which throws her off balance or results in an impressive Captain Jack Sparrow impersonation. These videos are from the 2nd and 3rd nights. Last night Tessa was trying to stand up on her own (without pulling up on something) and she succeeded half the time. The other half she face planted into the carpet --which is what happens when you just can't let go of your toy. We're proud of her. Plus, it's fun. She'll be upwardly mobile soon enough.

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Vacationing

I have needed to get some pictures up from our time in Utah/Idaho since we got home, especially with Jake's face having been the first thing people have seen on here for a while. Maybe a new post will keep Pakistani doctors from finding our blog and leaving comments about Jake's hairy face! So here they are finally.

We took a bunch of pictures right before and during Christmas, and then it's like I forgot I could actually use my camera. I would bring it places and then just forget I had it. I hate it when I do that.

We really enjoyed our time spent with family and friends. My only complaint was the cold. The snow was beautiful for a couple of days, and then my feet froze and would not unthaw the entire time we were there. We started out in Preston at my mom's, visited my dad's home in South Weber, then spent Christmas with the McBrides in Salt Lake. After Jake left, Tessa and I made the grandparent rounds again. We were also able to have several great friend visits. We missed some of you, though, so we're coming for you next time!

During the New Year holiday, I made some resolutions for myself, which I don't always do, so I'd like to share:
1. No more excuses or justifications (This one's a lifer). I don't want to explain away bad behavior. Being tired and hungry doesn't mean it's okay to be a jerk. I want to call it like it is for myself and then strive to do better.
2. Focus on a healthy lifestyle. (This was easier when it was part of my job.) I don't care about weight, I just want to feel good, feel fit, and be a good example for my family.
3. Make the most of time. I can procrastinate or waste time with the best of them. This is something I've been working on for a while and I think I've made some ground. Priorities, priorities, priorities. The constant question: Is there something more positive and productive I could be doing with my time? This one works with goal number two as well.

Okay. Thanks.

Ohhhhhhhhh. Tessa update. She has started quacking when she sees the rubber ducky. We have gotten her to stand on her own a little more each day, and we're not tricking her into it anymore. She knows she's standing. Today she clapped on her belly as I cheered her standing efforts. She laughs at her friend Hudson like he's a comedian. Sometimes she takes off her socks and uses them like pom poms. She's finally getting back into the swing of things at home as far as sleep goes. And lastly, that girl has an extremely expressive face. I think her poker face is going to be as good as her mom's.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

The Bachelor Life

Well, Maren and Tessa have been in Utah and Idaho for the last week and a half while I've been at home in Texas all alone. It's been a long sad week without my two girls here to keep me company.
So to protest the unfair week and a half that they had extra of vacation, I decided to go without shaving for that time. I Kinda think the beard makes me look tough.
However, since Maren won't come near me without a clean shaven face, I'm going to shave it tonight before I go to bed.
Well, Happy New Year from me to all of our friends out there. Off to shave and to finish a little clean-up of the house before Maren gets back tomorrow.
- Jake
P.S. Being alone for that long stinks. I am excited to hold my girls again tomorrow.