Thursday, March 01, 2012

Announcing The Birth Of Our Second Son

Crosby Watson Hill
Born February 23, 2012 at 6:55am
Seven Pounds
Twenty One Inches
Blue Eyes
Blonde Hair
Cute Everything

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Kessler Likes Singer-Songwriters

After my one man re-enactment of Veggie Tales' The Hairbrush Song this morning, I switched the music over to One Republic. Kessler kept saying, "Want play guitar, Daddy." So, eager to please and impress my son, I sold out and went all air-guitar to One Republic's guitarless synth.

Kessler said, "No Daddy, want play guitar on Daddy's pooter."

"Oh, you want me to play a song on the computer that has a guitar in it?"


I started at the top of my iTunes list and quickly selected Track 6 of Andrew Osenga's Letter To The Editor, Vol. 1. The open was a 10 second guitar strum.

Kessler was happy.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I Wan To Do Do Go To Town!

Life's been moving fast recently. Lots of exciting things have been happening and we have lots to be thankful for.

One of the many things we have to be thankful for is The Little Guy. He is more fun each day as he develops language, a sense of humor, coordination, and a sweet disposition.

Ashley taught him a new game last night and he LOVED it. It's called Go To Town.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

This Is Not A Painting

I can not stop looking at this photo.* It's the National Geographic Photo of the Day from yesterday and supposedly, it's not some magical work of photoshop or a paintbrush. It's an actual photograph.

That orange backdrop is the reflection of the rising sun off a dune in Namibia. The trees are a very real part of one of the country's largest national parks.

Surreal; never has a word been more, and less, apropos than that one to describe something as it does this photo.

*This sentence is likely somewhat false. If taken literally, it is completely false. It is fully within my power to stop looking at the photo and I've been able to avert my eyes more than ten times even since writing that sentence. If taken figuratively, it is somewhat false. My intention was not to deceive, but the phrasing leaves a lot up to the reader to interpret in order to determine my actual degree of interest in looking at the photo. For instance, it is conceivable that I would use the same phrase to describe my interest in a photograph that I am actually one hundred times more interested in. In which case, the reader would, for one of the photos or the other, be off by a factor of one hundred when estimating my actual interest in the photo. The reader's interpretation of my interest level matters because in their mind it is a communication of my values. How the reader interprets something isn't necessarily my responsibility, but attempting to communicate the appropriate sentiment is. I was using the sentence as an expression to communicate that I am slightly mesmerized by the aesthetic of the photograph combined with the knowledge that it is just a photograph, in a this-is-a-random-photo-of-landscape-not-a-picture-of-my-wife-and-son sort of way. One could argue that expressions like the one I used do more harm than good when trying to express thoughts on any matter. Have a nice day.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Kessler's First Year

Click here to view this photo book larger

Moses Is Coming Home

Our friends, Abby and Daniel Umlauf, announced in September 2008 that they were going to adopt a little boy from Ethiopia. After a painstaking 13-month wait for a referral, they finally got pictures of their little boy. They named him Moses.

Five months later, over a year and a half after they began the process, they were informed the region where Moses is from was closed to adoption and they would not be able to adopt the boy they'd thought of as their son. The same day, they got a call that another referral came in for a boy in another region which was open for adoption. In one day they felt like they lost one son, but gained another. The second boy is Asher, who was finally able to come home this past August, nearly 2 years after the Umlaufs started the process.

A few days ago, they got word their first son, Moses, had miraculously become available for adoption. And they're going for it. He is their son, after all. After working tirelessly to save and do fundraisers with the help of committed friends to raise the $20,000 or so needed for their first adoption, they now have 1 month to raise about $14,000 to bring home their 16-month old son.

Please consider a tax-deductible donation to help bring Moses home. The details are on their blog:

This is Asher, followed by the story of how they decided on the name Moses:

Told by Abby at the time they decided to adopt: 
Three years ago, I told Daniel that I loved the name Moses. He quickly told me "no way."
This summer Daniel was reading the Old Testament and read that Moses was the only prophet that met God face to face. He got a little more excited about the name.

The next day I listened to a John Piper sermon on adoption and realized Moses was one of the three adopted children in the OT.

I looked up what Moses meant and read "saved" "pulled from the water" "adopted." I emailed Daniel at work to tell him that and he said "well I guess we will have an Ethiopian son named Moses."

Two weeks later, I went out to eat with my grandparents and asked them their parents and grandparent's names. My gaga who is a special person in my life said his grandfather's name was Moses. That was it, we were meant to have a son named Moses!!!

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Ashley finally posts!!!!!!

After 6 years, Blake and I are each taking huge steps in our marriage. First of all, I (Ashley) am writing a blog post. No post on the blog to this point (entitled BlASH's blog), has ever been authored by the latter half of it's namesake. Sad, but true. So that's what I'm doing.

Now, if you know my blonder half, you should know that he's quite practical. Much to my initial chagrin, I have come to appreciate, nay, adore this practicality. For example, a month's supply of Pampers magically appears on our front porch the 16th of every month for a lower price per diaper than we could find at any local retailer. What? Yep. You wish your husband was so practical.

There must be a catch! Well, sometimes that practicality overrides the emotional and irrational desire you have to do something, like order an overpriced coke at dinner or send Christmas cards. Some people might say, "Why would we print pictures on paper when we have a blog to display our pictures to friends and family?"  But I, ahem, some other people, LOVE seeing the smiling faces of friends and family as they trickle into the mailbox througout December. And honestly, don't you get a little flutter in your heart when you open the mailbox to a letter hand-addressed to you? 

This year we are sending Christmas cards!  Is it because we have an incredibly adorable son whose face would look great on a Christmas photo card? Yes. But also because Shutterfly is giving us the opportunity to try the Christmas card tradition for FREE this year! We get 50 free photo cards just for posting about it! There are over 800 designs to choose from. I haven't made a decision about which one I'll choose but this is a cute one:
Shutterfly does Christmas gifts, too.  And what self-respecting grandparent wouldn't cherish a gift mug with their grandchild's picture on it? 

We know you didn't come to our blog to hear about our precious son and not see a picture, so here's a little teaser.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Thanksgiving Video 2010

Forgot to post this.

It was fun to have the fam together over Thanksgiving weekend and to watch Kessler interact with all his girly cousins.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Kessler Gets A Flu Shot

A few weeks ago Kessler got his first flu shot. He was totally fine after crying for about 30 seconds. I just loved his epic silent cry and had to share it.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Our Son Loves To Swing

From The Bowels Of My Brain X

This one is for all U.S. Americans, and for people in other countries that don't have maps.

We're debuting our first Bowels sponsor in this edition of From The Bowels Of My Brain.

>> One of life's greatest joys is picking up things with your feet.

>> You can never have enough chip clips.

>> I feel better about myself after I trim my neck hair.

>> I HAVE to trim my fringanails and toenails at least once a week.

>> I wonder what I'll think about some of these bowels when I'm sixty.

>> Who am I kidding? These are all inarguable, timeless truths.

>> Following financial news daily makes you 30% less happy

>> Following political news daily makes you 90% less happy

>> Following financial and political news daily sucks all your happiness away, plus 20% of the happiness of those with whom you interact.

>> Dryer sheets as fabric softener actually work.

>> There's no such thing as normal.

>> The absolute best way to limit face wrinkles is to limit your use of any facial expressions, keep a poker face at all times.*

>> It also helps to drink lots of water and use a daily lotion with SPF.

>> Everything over a baby monitor sounds a lot worse than it actually is.

>> The little loop in the tongue of a tennis shoe is helpful.

That's all I got for ya today.

Sayonara sweeties.

*Brought to you by Lady GaGa.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Kessler In The Tub

Ashley does his baths in the sink, but since he hit his head on the metal the first 3 times I tried to bathe him in the sink, I like to use the blow-up baby bathtub in the big bathtub. He was in an especially good mood one evening, so I grabbed the camera.

"Kessler Needs To Wash His Hair"

A couple months ago I posted how I love kid conversations. Stories of what kids say and do consistently make me smile and often make me laugh.

This morning Livy came over to the house. Livy and Kessler were each in a really good mood. Livy finished coloring and was eating breakfast. Kessler was crawling all over the house, banging a big spoon on the floor, and pulling up on the furniture. He moseyed into the kitchen near Livy while she was eating. Ashley then got a phone call and I went to brush my teeth. I start walking back toward the kitchen and hear Livy say, "Kessler needs to wash his hair." I look down and see Kessler's head dripping with white fluid. I look over and see Livy's "big-girl" cup, once half-full of milk, now empty.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Kessler: 9 Months

He's actually over 10 months old now, but this is from around his 9 month birthday.

Music Monday | Ben Harper

I borrowed a friend's Ben Harper mix and popped it in my car CD player for my ride back to college one weekend. It was late on a Sunday evening. The song caught me off guard and blew me away. I listened to it probably 5 times in a row.

I want to be ready.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Kessler Wants The Football

There was a ball about 5 feet away from him. He was a slow crawler. He really wanted the ball.

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Life In Bullets

  • There's a lot of catching up to do so I'll have to trickle some catch-up posts over the next few weeks.
  • There's been a lot of life happening lately, so much so that I haven't really had a chance to write about it.
  • The biggest thing is that the adoption I blogged about last Christmas is becoming a reality. 
  • Heather and Gardner went to Uganda 3 weeks ago today and cleared courts for their new little girl.
  • She's adorable and we hope to meet her in a week or 2 if they can get the VISA. More updates to come on this.
  • While Heather and Gardner were in Uganda (Gardner is home now) Ashley and I kept their 2 year old daughter, Livy. It was a lot of fun, double the desire to get home from work in the afternoon, but it was also a lot of work. We started the same day after hearing a sermon on dying to self. I felt like I really got to put it into practice.
  • We've had weddings and High School Reunions and various other events which will have to be discussed further.
  • Kessler, meanwhile, has become a busy body. He's all over the place; crawling, pulling up, pushing toys while walking, climbing stairs (!), imitating us, communicating more, stomping with his hands, opening drawers, falling a lot, bruising and cutting his previously flawless little face, et cetera, et cetera.
  • Ashley has been Supermom 2x while making sure Kessler is cared for and serving as a wonderful "Sissy" while taking care of Livy for a little over 2 weeks. 
  • I've started writing for a Chargers' site. And the Chargers are now 2-4. I hate being a fan of anything, but I keep going back to it. More on this later.
  • My work has been busy and I have some more responsibility now. It's good, but has made managing everything a bit more of a challenge. 
  • It's 10:43pm and I'm really sleepy, which almost never happens. 
  • Expect some more updates prominently featuring pictures of the little guy, stories about the adoption, and Bowels Of My Brain over the next couple weeks. 
  • Don't do drugs.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Music Monday | Bon Iver

Another artist where I could have posted a number of songs. This is the song, though, that made me fall in love with Bon Iver's music.