Of Thunderstorm and Sniffles

In case you haven’t been paying attention, it’s been raining in San Antonio for, oh, about 3 months now.

Oh wait. In New York or Los Angeles that’s a news story. Because we’re flooding like crazy, we only get a quicky 30 second mention every two weeks or so.

“And coming up after the break, we’re going to do an in-depth story about steam tunnels. What they are, who maintains them, how New York is kept alive by them, and why they break. By the way, all of south Texas just slipped into the Gulf of Mexico. We’ll get back to the steam tunnels right after this.”

So, yes, it continues to rain here. We’ve almost received our total average rainfall for the year, and this morning, we had some particularly nasty thunderstorms come through. Lightning, thunder, the whole nine yards.

Rachel, as usual, slept through the entire thing.

But God forbid, I actually got up to go to the bathroom, and getting back into bed, I sniffled, which evidently was enough to wake up my daughter.

No matter that I’d been up for two hours already listening to the thunder and rain, which woke me up, a freakin’ freight train could probably hit our house and she’d be fine, but if she hears someone moving around that’s all she wrote.

Where does she get that from?

Seven Hundrend Thirty Days

Sorry, Rachel, but your thirteen month newsletter isn’t getting top billing today.

Two years ago today, Monica and I were married.

Super Kitty

As Moni likes to tell me, “I’m the winner!”

I cannot believe how much things have changed in two years. I’m sure I’ll probably say that every year until I meet my maker, but really, how much more could things change?


In two years, we’ve bought a new house, had a child, both gotten new cars, and I got a new job.

Day 72/Family Portrait

I can’t wait to see what the next year will bring. Maybe more fish?


Thirteen Months

Dear Rachel,

Today you turn thirteen months old.

You’ve had quite a busy debut into your second year of life. It started with a bang when your birthday party turned out to be one huge incubator for illness. We still don’t know for sure what caused it, but at least 9 people got sick that were at the party, including you. It broke my heart to see you throwing up so much. You had no idea what was happening to you, and in between puking, you were still your normal, happy self. You’re quite the trooper.

I'll just hit it from here

After a week of being sick, we took you to the ER on the night the Spurs won the NBA Championship. You were in there for about 6 hours, and stayed awake the whole time. You were given an IV to get your fluids back up to par, but it took the nurses quite a while to find a good vein, and you screamed your head off the entire time they were trying to get the needle in you. I don’t blame you, I would have too.


After you were done being sick, your appetite came back with a vengeance. It’s incredible how much you’ve been eating. Every morning, you’ll eat a whole banana, an entire slice of toast and at least one cup of milk. Lunch is whatever we happen to give you, but you eat almost as much as your mother at one sitting. Dinner is the same way, AND you have a snack in the afternoon, too! I don’t know where you’re putting all of it, but when your body is finished with it, it’s most definitely coming out the other end.

Her first meal from Avanti's

You got to see your Grandpa Rick and Grandma Connie twice this month. They came down for your birthday, and we went to visit them at the end of the month. That means you got to go for your second trip in a plane this month. It was a lot different than when you rode in the plane last year. That time, you slept the entire trip. This time, we couldn’t get you to go to sleep for anything. You were actually very good on the plane. You only let loose a couple of screams when we tried to keep you from doing things you so desperately wanted to do, like play with the laptop of the guy sitting next to Mommy, or sticking your hand in between the seats to touch the people behind us. You really enjoyed looking out the window as we were flying. In addition to your Grandparents, you also got to see your Great-Grandmas and a lot of your Great Aunts and Uncles who haven’t seen you for a while.

Rachel, Grandma, and Great-Grandmas

Back to your Grandparents. They spoil you rotten. They bought you all kinds of fun toys that you played with the entire time we were up there. They gave you lots of love, and I’m sure they miss you. You loved crawling all over their house, and up and down the step to their sun room. Their dog, Rhett, was much more willing to be around you this year. Last year, he didn’t even want to be in the same room as you. This year, he let you pet him. You got to go for your first boat ride on Grandpa Rick’s boat, and you seemed to enjoy it, except for the big life jacket you had to wear.

Rachel and Grandpa

You absolutely LOVE the water. I took you swimming for the first time at your friend Annika’s house up in Austin, and you loved it. You started putting your face in the water the second we got in the pool. We’ve taken you to the local pool a couple of times now, and you just laugh and scream with delight every time we put you in the water. We might actually have to get a real pool. You have a kiddie pool and Grandma and Grandpa got one for you at their house too, and you got this huge smile every time we put you in it.


You dance every time you hear music now, and sometimes when you don’t. Judy taught you how to dance a couple of months ago and you do it by swinging your arms and trying to snap your fingers. It’s very cute. Now, Grandpa Rick has taught you how to stomp your foot while you’re dancing too, except Grandpa Rick doesn’t have any rhythm, so your stomps are completely out of sync with the music. That’s OK, we’ve got plenty of time to fix that.


You’re also walking all over the place now, with a little help. You will take a finger and stand up and do this drunken sailor walk, with a huge grin on your face because you know you’re doing something special. You’ll also hold onto objects and push them in front of you. You have a walker here at home that you like to do that with, and you had one in Illinois, too. But your favorite way to walk is pushing my recliner around by the foot rest with me in it. You look like a pony ride at the fair, just walking around in circles, but you love it. I have no doubt that you’ll be walking on your own before too much longer.

walking with help

You’ve also started communicating a lot more with us. You’ve started signing the word ‘more’ and you’ll sign ‘finished’ when you’re done eating. When you’re thirsty, you’ll say ‘Ahhhh,’ because evidently that’s the sound daddy makes when he drinks a beer, and it clicked in your brain that that is the sound you make when you drink. You also still making barking sounds when you hear a dog, and meow sounds when you hear a cat, but you also have a new sound for the dog: you pant, like he does when we’re on a walk. Your first real word, though, seems to be ‘Hi’ because you say it all the time. You’ll babble all kinds of other stuff that we don’t quite understand, but HI is the one things that comes through loud and clear.

Rachel and Grandma

Finally, you got your first haircut this month! The hair in the middle of your head has been there for a year and it was the longest on your head. It was also hanging in your eyes and getting food stuck in it all the time. We decided to cut your bangs so that you didn’t have to keep pushing it back.

After the haircut

Your second year has stared off great…we can’t wait to see what else you’ll learn next. We love you very much.