Sunday, June 23, 2013

Father's Day 2013

Today's guest blog is from me, Daddy. Anna Ruth asked me to do a guest blog for Father's Day and even though it is a week late, here it is. Frances is 2 years and 4 months old. I remember telling myself I would stop telling her age after her second birthday, but I catch myself wanting to tell the world exactly how long I have been living the most wonderful time of my life. I really love viewing the world through Frances' eyes. Parents know what I am talking about. You look at your baby and she's got a paci in her mouth, blanky clutched in her arm and The Wiggles or Sesame Street on TV. Life is good. She has everything she needs. But it is also everything else that comes with being Frances' father. It's learning about early intervention and where it was a short time ago versus where it is today. You get an excellent perspective on that if you read Gene Stallings book, "Another Season". Which reminds me, I remember having moments of fear. Before Frances was born, I remember asking myself questions like, "Am I equipped emotionally and spiritually to raise a child with special needs?", "Will I love this child?" and "Will she love me?". So, of course I googled. And I often came across this picture:

Yep, I was pretty sure I could do it. I saw my future in Gene Stallings face and quickly became excited about the joy that was on its way into my life.

Shortly before Frances' birth, another door into my future opened up. It was when a father of another child with Down's Syndrome called me to welcome me to the journey. Wayne Miller asked me out to dinner with other Fathers Of Kids With Down's Syndrome (FOKWDS). I showed up at Buffalo Wild Wings wondering how I was going to find a group of men I had never met before. It was pretty easy. There was a table of about 30 men waiting for me. There was joking, laughter and an all around sense of comradery. I had just me some of the greatest guys I had ever known. They were excited for me but they also knew I had no idea the joy that was coming my way in less than two months. One of these men, Craig Krawzyk, wrote a Father's Day blog a year ago that has stuck with me since. I will let it speak for itself and urge you to read it here:

Thirty minutes ago, I was staring at a blank page thinking, "How am I going to fill this up?" and "How do I write down what my heart is bursting with?" Well, Anna Ruth has been doing that for us for the past 2 years and 4 months. So, I will show you how I spent last Sunday, Father's Day 2013.

This was actually a few days before, but you get the idea.

Frances made me pancakes for breakfast with Momma's help.

Helping me unwrap my Father's Day gifts: Beach toys we can share next month.

Breaking in some of the toys at the pool.

Playing in the deep end with the big kids.

Crowning me King for a day. Momma gets the crown for the rest of the year.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer Fun

We have been on the go constantly for the past 2 weeks.  We spent a few days at the beach with Meme and Grump, then spent the week in MS with Sage, Jack, and the girls.

Brooks, Fran, Irene, Anna- Heading to the park

Frances LOVES the beach (although she eats sand nonstop).  She played and played in the sand and in the edge of the ocean and we can't wait to go back next month.

Building sandcastles with Grump and Daddy
I love the beach!
Frances, Anna, Irene, and Brooks are quite the toddler crew.  They have so much fun playing with each other.  Meme and I had a busy week with those girls!
Brooks, Irene, Anna

Pool party
Snack time in The Grove

Enjoy the new videos below!