No baby yet – but taking guesses on the name; your only clue is that it is an uncommon female’s name in the Old Testament – I can neither confirm nor deny any guesses – but I might consider a prize if someone gets it – one submission per person 🙂

Thoughts from a First-Time Dad-To-Be

My beautiful wife Sarah is due with our first child next month (3rd week of September). We tried, waited, and prayed for 4 and a half years to have a child before we got pregnant. We experienced the pains of infertility, such as seeing so many happy families with children all around us, some of them (with good intentions) asking us when we were going to have children. We would just have to respond with things like, “When the time is right…” if we were not interested in having a deep, emotional conversation at the moment.

Then came the joy of getting pregnant, which came as a welcomed surprise. In the midst of the joy, more fears raced through my mind, such as the health of the baby and mommy and seeing them pull through this amazing journey to a healthy labor and delivery.

So far, so good. Thank you to all who have supported us and prayed for us through this time. We love our friends and family.

With a month to go, I thought I would list out a few things on my mind currently about being a Dad soon.

1. I’ve wanted to be a Dad for as long as I can remember – a main reason being the joy and love and security I experienced from my own father.

2. I’m past the “ready” point. Many Dads have about 9 months to emotionally prepare. I feel like I’ve had a longer waiting period because of the waiting period Sarah and I went through in order to get pregnant.

3. Every Dad I’ve ever talked to would place the birth of their first child somewhere in the top 2 or 3 moments of their lives. All I can say is that I can only imagine that feeling and experience. You can tell me all day long how special that is, but I will never really know what its like until the day comes next month.

4. I get filled with emotion when I am around the babies and small children of our friends. My “Dad” pistons are firing up more and more as each day goes by.

5. I heard someone say that a woman becomes a mother when she gets pregnant, but a man becomes a father when he holds the baby for the first time. I think that has to do with the whole “carrying” concept. The woman is constantly carrying this new life and the man can only feel the kicking and set up the crib. I’m looking forward to my first experience of carrying our child.

6. I have also heard from too many people about the tons of dirty diapers, sleepless nights, and endless crying. I think I get the picture. And I will not know what it’s really like until it happens. Until then, I’m confident that we’ll somehow make it through.

7. Speaking of “until then,” I realize this will be one of the calmest months of my life until about 2040, depending on how many children we end up having. So here’s to quiet nights and a clean house. Then I say, “Bring it on, baby.”

A Date With My Mother-In-Law

I love my mother-in-law. Sometimes I actually feel like I get along better with her than my own wife does. Today, my wife spent the day with a friend and I was left to chill with Carolyn. We went up to Barr Lake State Park just northeast of Denver in hopes of catching some good bird sightings. We went to the nature center and they told us to be on the look-out for the nesting Bald Eagle at the 2.5 mile marker on the trail. We hiked our way to the spot, checking off a few birds on the way (Northern Flicker, Red-Winged Blackbird, Belted Kingfisher).

We finally spotted the lone tree out over the water. Built within the upper branches was an enormous nest built for an avian king. Atop the huge nest of large sticks sat the mother of all birds – the bald eagle. We weren’t sure if it was the male or the female, since they both have the bald white head. We were told that mama eagle was sitting on her eggs which were about to hatch any day now. We never saw any chicks pop up out of the nest but we did get quite a show from the eagle itself.

About a minute into watching the nesting eagle, it jumped up, spread its majestic wings and dove towards the water. We lost sight of it as it descended behind some trees. About a minute later, it re-emerged into our view and approached the nest. This time, it had some lunch in its talons (either a fish or another unlucky bird). Perhaps it was feeding itself or it was bringing food to the new chicks down in the nest – we couldn’t tell if there were any little ones. Either way, it was a magnificent sight.

On the way home from the park, we stopped for lunch at, you guessed it, Chick-Fil-A.

Christmas with Carolyn

Sarah’s Mom, Carolyn, visited us all the way from Denver, CO. We had a great time walking the streets of Richmond, VA and taking a few pictures along the way. Sarah and I have lived here for 2 years and pass some of these tourist sites all the time. It takes an out of town visitor coming to get us to stop and see the great sites that are right in front of us everyday! We have pictures of the Old City Hall (in classic Gothic architecture), Sarah and Carolyn at Cafe Keturra, and Jesse and Sarah in front of the Virginia State Capitol building.