Sunday, December 30, 2012

Mr. Cheeseball

 Well, let's go back a month since I apparently never documented our 7th month with Jesse.
Likes - MOVING and food (Hmm, some things never change.)
Going to bed at 6:30 p.m.
Scrunching up his face and snuffling his nose when he thinks something is funny.
Dislikes - Holding still while getting his diaper changed. When he is tired and just wants to be in bed you literally need two people during the changing process- one to pin him down and the other to quickly slap on a new diaper and throw his pjs on. 

8 months

 At 8 months old Jesse is turning into quite the little cheese ball. We have loved watching his little personality come out this month as he is so expressive. Most of the time this expressiveness plays out in his facial expressions but he's also started to master arching his back to show his dislike. Really? So soon? Thank goodness babies are easily distracted!

He is quite the little mover. When he really wants to get somewhere he resorts to army crawling but he is improving at getting places on his hands and knees. His current activity of choice is pulling himself up on anything, usually he just makes it to his knees but over Christmas the frequency in which he made it all the way to standing increased dramatically. Unfortunately for me, the place he has the most success in standing up is in the bath tub. Worst place ever to practice standing Jesse.
Jesse experienced snow for the first time in his little life. Like most babies he didn't think much of it. But he happily sat in a pile of it while Owen did some sledding. I always forget how sensitive his little blue eyes are. We better start working on keeping sunglasses on for next summer, he's gonna need them!

Another thing about Jesse is that he loves to sleep with his arm tucked in between the mattress and the side of the crib. No matter where I lay him down he inevitably ends up in his favorite sleeping spot.

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Wednesday, December 5, 2012


It's official...I've dropped the blogging ball.
How is that possible when I have such cute subjects to inspire me to
life changing wordsmithery? (Yup, just made that word up.)
Well, I guess it's actually their fault. One is crawling. The other is learning
that his toys are no longer his own. And I'm beginning my new role as referee.

Don't worry though, I'm gonna make a blogging comeback (cue the applause.)
The days fly by, these boys change too quickly, and my brain just does not come with enough bandwith to remember forever all the sweet, crazy moments of life.
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Monday, November 12, 2012

Harvest Carnival

 Every year around Halloween our church hosts a Harvest Carnival complete with games, prizes, inflatables and candy. It is pure chaos. I almost want to stop writing there because that kind of sums up the event, but I won't. The thing is sometimes you have to engage in the chaos because that is how traditions begin. Sure, the costumes and whole ordeal is really more for us right now than it is for the kids, but some day soon they will think it's cool. Some day they'll run off with the their friends and leave us behind. Some day they won't want to stand still and have their picture taken...oh wait, that happens now. Some day we'll be more on the periphery. So for now, I'll take the chaos and enjoy these moments when the kids are little, the events always interrupting a nap, but the joy in the little things so genuine. 
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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pumpkin Patch

Fall took awhile to unfurl it's golden splendor in Seattle. Sadly, once it showed up, so did the rain. Being the true Seattlites we are, we layered up, threw on our rubber boots and set off to make some memories with our little men at a pumpkin patch.

There were tractors, loads of pumpkins, tantalizing fall treats (we indulged in some hot off the griddle pumpkin donuts) and a few farm animals. Jesse took in all the sights and smells from the safety and comfort of his Daddy's back. Owen was partially enthralled partially overwhelmed by all there was to take in. True to his 2 year old little boy nature there is one story he loves to tell anyone who asks him how his trip to the pumpkin patch was. It goes a little something like this: "Owen, did you have fun at the pumpkin patch?" Owen: "I saw a horsey! The horsey did a big stinky!"

Yup. You read that right. It wasn't the huge pumpkins, the tractors, or the donuts that stuck out to Owen, it was the big pile of horse poo. Something makes me think this won't be the last poo story I'll live to retell.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

On Becoming Best Buds


The pictures are blurry and grainy. They irk my perfectionist side. But then I stop and look at what I've captured - two little boys who are becoming best buds. The reminders to Owen to stop squishing his brother are constant and the quest for balance between letting them be and curbing the smaller one from getting hurt is ongoing, they are equally enthralled with one another. Mostly, I get to see my boys delight in being together. I doubt Owen remembers life without Jesse. He is learning to be kind, to share, and to look out for his younger brother. But one thing we didn't have to teach him was to love him. While I tire of disciplining and repeating the same lines over and over ("Owen, get off your brother. Owen, look in my eyes, Jesse is little and you can't tackle him") I think the root of his physicality stems from wanting Jesse to hurry and grow up so they can truly be Best buds.
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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

1/2 way to 1!

 Well hello. I'm 6 months old. I have 1.25 teeth, eat every solid food my mom gives me, and think the world of my older brother. I am sitting up unassisted for the most part and am always on the move even though I'm not crawling yet (good luck taking my picture now mom.) I recently had my first ride in the grocery cart and I thought I was kind of a big deal. I weigh 18 lbs 10 oz and am 27.9 inches long so for the first time in my life I'm smaller than Owen was (much to my mother's surprise.)

 I have a feeling this is how my "month" pictures are going to end up looking from now on. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

5 months!

My goodness, how is he already 5 months old?
Every month I find myself astounded because somehow I love him even more than the month before and every month I can't imagine how I could possibly love him more. Maybe it's his bald head and gigantic blue eyes, or his funny little growl, or the way he talks in his falsetto when he's excited. Perhaps it's his strength or the way he is now obsessed with jumping ever since I put him the "Johnny-jump-up." Or, maybe it's the fact that he loves to go to bed at 6:30...just kidding. But really, it's this amazing capacity God has given us for our hearts to expand in love when we didn't think it could possibly do so anymore. Whatever it is, I could kiss his cheeks all day long.
 This picture just makes me chuckle. 

Things about Jesse:
-Almost sitting up by himself. He will sit unassisted for quite some time before he'll fall over. I'm looking forward to those days of being able to just put him down sitting up. 
- We started solid foods this month and he's a pro. So far he's had avocado, sweet potato, banana, pears, peas and peaches and we usually just feed him solids once a day.
- Most days we're down to two naps but every once in a while he needs a short third one. 
- He continues to be very physically active. I put him in the jumper this last week and I think he thought he'd died and gone to heaven. Hold him so he can stand and it won't be long before he starts bouncing up and down.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Aloha Elijah

 Look at this little Prince. This is Elijah James Koamalu Bryan, the first born son of our dear friend Jonah and his beautiful wife Sara. Jonah is one of the most genuine, gentle yet vibrant, caring with a touch of crazy guys you'll ever meet. We met Jonah our first year of college when he and Josh lived in the same dorm and it didn't take long for a friendship to form between him and Josh. After college, Jonah lived with my parents for a summer while he transitioned into grad school in Seattle and so solidified his place as "family" to us. I love having friends like that - ones you get to walk through a multitude of life's seasons with.

One thing about Jonah is that he was one of those guys who was comfortable with being single. What that really means is that he frustrated just about every single girl he came in contact with in college. They fell in love with all his wonderful qualities and he fell in love with life's great adventures (swimming, rock climbing, mountaineering, surfing, barefoot running...we've seen Jonah go through a lot of different hobbies over the years) none of which seemed to really include a female companion. Until he met this beauty, Sara.

I was so intrigued to meet Sara for the first time, curious to find out what kind of woman could finally captivate Jonah. She is strong, bold, caring, quick to laugh, equally genuine and perfectly matched for Jonah. She has this amazing ability to love Jonah in a way that does not try to limit him but rather embraces him for all that he is - crazy hobbies and eating habits in all. They are the kind of couple whose love is inspiring to watch for they so beautifully allow one another to fully be who God has created them to be.

So all of that to say, I was delighted and honored to take some pictures of their sweet boy and their newly expanded family a few weeks ago.

Little Elijah you are one blessed boy and I am so excited to see what adventures lie ahead of you in the years to come. May you grow to be a boy whose vibrant love for God transcends all that you do.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Of Golden Afternoons

There are five kids, three happily married couples, and one set of wonderful grandparents that now make up the King/Stroh/Pogue family. Relaxing summer days at the cabin used to be made up of countless hours soaking up the sun while lying on the dock, inner-tubing on the lake, and delicious BBQ meals. The only thing that really remains the same is the food for family gatherings are full of life these days. Little boys show off their various feats of strength and skill, one feisty little princess who will be bossing those rough-house loving boys around in no time, and one chubby baby who soaks up all the commotion around him. There is much laughter at the antics of small children, countless wet towels and changes of clothes, sand-filled swim suits, sun-kissed noses, and a multitude of priceless moments as the kids play happily in the shallows of the lake. How blessed we are to share these golden light filled days with people we love so dearly.