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Thursday, September 15, 2011

She is a Patootie…

A Cutie Patootie that is.  I have been informed by several friends and family members that I need to post some cute pictures of Baby Leighton.  Or as they all put it... 
Friends/Family: You need to start saving…
Me: Oh, you know Jon… We already have a college savings account set up!
Friends/Family: no no, not for college… for therapy you silly girl.  Your daughter is going to need tons of therapy if she ever reads your blog.
Well, I hope that this entry makes it up to her… I mean, it hasn’t even been five months yet… how much permanent damage could I have done?  Don’t answer that please!
Here are a few pics from the last few weeks... enjoy!

 Someone give me some butter for these rolls... i just want to eat them!!!

Until later…

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten years ago...

We all knew where we were ten years ago on this day.  We know the moment we heard that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center towers and then it became more real when the second tower was hit.  The world simultaneously froze and was in fast forward at the same time.   We all have our stories of that day and the days following as we were glued to the television, calling the ones you loved and staying close to the ones around you. 
I was so lucky to have lived in New York City for a semester during college and I fell in love with the city.  NYC has a life of its own... it breathes and fills you with life… it has an energy like no other place on Earth.  It is a true melting pot and is a perfect picture of America.  I lived in the city during the second anniversary of September 11th.  My roommate, Colleen and I made our way
down to Ground Zero on this day 8 years ago.   I was not expecting the rush of emotions that I witnessed and felt while I was there that day.  Yes, I had my story of that day, but it was nothing compared to the people who witnessed firsthand the destruction and death of 9/11.   I sat in my college dorm room watching from a bubble… I was not there that day, I did not know anyone who died, I did not have to walk past the hospitals that had patients overflowing into the streets, I did not have to clean up the dust that had found its way into my house from the collapsed towers… I was just a bystander until that day on September 11th, 2003.  As I stood at the sight of the attacks I
 felt it in my core.  I watched grown men fall to their knees weeping while the names of the victims were being read by their family members.  A car was driving around playing the Star Spangled Banner, which along with the names being read was the only other noise you heard besides the shedding of so many tears.  That day truly sunk in and I saw that this had not only happened to New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia, but it had happened to my country… this had happened to ME!  It was by far one of the most emotional days of my life.  Colleen and I did not stay for long, we couldn’t!  The emotional effort it took to be there completely wiped us out. 
So, did I think ten years ago and then eight that I would be living in the Middle East in a place that supplied two of the hijackers that day, HELL NO!  But, I am here.  I think you can learn from the past and you can grow and move forward.  Education and relationships are key in this process, so I am trying to fully experience this Muslim world I am living in.  Jon and I live next door to Adil.  Adil is a Pakistani and Muslim man… should I hate him for those two facts… should I judge him?  Are these two items the only things that make him who he is?  No, he has so many other traits that make up who he truly is. Adil is a Dad to three wonderful daughters, he is a husband to a beautiful wife, he is a banker, a cricket player, a son and a neighbor.  He is just like us, just born in a different place and practices a different religion.  There are millions of Adils in this world!
 Are there crazies out their too?  Yes and we should fight to stop the terrorism that threatens our lives and our future.  I have learned through my experiences over here that we are not fighting a war against Islam.  We are in a battle everyday against extremists!  We should never forget what happened that day and we can honor those who died this day, ten years ago, by stopping those who are irrational, ignorant, unjust and poison this world.  We must all stand together, Americans, Middle Easterners, Chinese, African, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or Atheist to stop those who want to get in the way of this world, OUR world from moving into a peaceful future. 
Today, I am thinking of my family and friends back home, my cousin serving our country in Afghanistan and his family, my new friends in this foreign land that I now call home and the daughter we brought into the world.  I hope that she will see a world where we can all coexist peacefully.  I am an American and a proud one, but I am also a child of this world and I hope that others like me can rise up and over shadow those who want to put a black cloud over this world we all call home! (Cue the epic song We are the world as the blog fads to black…)
Okay, here is a little video to cut the serious blog... I just can’t handle that much seriousness at one time!  I think if everyone in the world watched this video it might be a happier place and bring us a little bit closer together!
(Leighton has found her voice and this is her new favorite pastime!)

Until Later…

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Everything is BIGGER in Texas…

 Although Leighton was not born in the greatest state in the good ol’ US of A, she is living up to its reputation.  Texas is amazing and our state pride is sickening to others, but that’s just because they are jealous that they aren't from Texas!  We have BBQ, Shiner Beer, every type of landscape you can imagine, Blue Bell ice cream with peach cobbler, Whataburger, No state income tax and Austin. With my bloated ego, I thought everyone in the world knew where Texas was, but I have been proven wrong over here. It is just habit when people ask where I am from, to say TEXAS… but when I say that here 50% of the time I get the head tilt…to which I reply, the States (I should just say… the place that George Bush is from…. then they would know but i would be hated all at the same time). It has been kind of a bubble-burster, but I will not let it get to me and I will spread my Texas cheer around the world damn it!  Also, I will let our daughter know where she is from and how great her “real” home is… she will be a Texan that just happened to be born in the desert!

So, we had Munchkin’s 4 month doctor's appointment which is not a fun appointment at all.  They did the normal checkup things and her pediatrician, Dr. Khan, let us know that she is in the 85th percentile in height and…. wait for it… 90th percentile in weight.  I started laughing when he announced her weight… he turned to me and asked why I was laughing to which I replied, “it’s just funny that she is living up to her German Texas genes!”  We chuckled (he went to A&M by the way) and then he said, “at least she is proportional!”… “More like spherical” Jon replied… such a loving daddy, right?!  Leighton is really a laid back baby, southern to her core and is chill most of the time.  We have given her the nickname CBE aka, coolest baby ever!  However, the 4 month appointment was not conducive to this nickname.  She got her second round of boosters in both her legs.  As the Doctor and his nurse double teamed her legs with shots, Leighton’s face turned bright red and she started screaming… but not with any noise at first.  It was one of those silent screams that turned into a downright full body scream that must have come up from her toes… it was so loud.  Once again Jon and I started laughing, because there wasn’t much we can do about it.  At this point Dr. Khan turned around and looked at us with disgust in his eyes… I apologized and told him that she never ever cries like that… we actually had never seen her that mad before so it was funny (probably funny to us because WE hadn’t made her that mad!).  I don’t think he bought it though… we might have CPS at our door step next week! 

Anyways, I don’t think Leighton is taking this 90th percentile thing very well.  She has started to bicycle kick 24/7.  I let her know that exercise can be a good thing, but taking it to extremes is a problem.  We have put her on a workout routine so she doesn’t take it overboard.  But it doesn’t stop there… I found the munchkin shoving her entire hand down her throat after rice cereal the other night.  Jon and I set her down and talked with her about loving the body she has... some people are just big boned and it is nothing that binging and purging is going to cure.  We are trying to get her to embrace her fat rolls… which we now call love rings!  I think the next step is buying her a Baby Lane Bryant gift card and make it a bonding day where we buy things to make the pain go away.

I told Leighton that scarves can be used to hide those lumps and bumps you don’t
want others to see… I think she took it a little too far though!

Jon and I just keep telling Little L that she needs to be excited about this 90th
percentile ranking, because with parents like us who both just squeaked in to the top 50% of our high school graduating classes… this might be the last time she is ranked that high! 

A few of Leighton's current favorite things...
Three of her faves... Daddy, Sofie and chewing on her hand! 
All she is missing is food and you have the top four!
Oh wait... there's the food! 

Hanging out in her sling... you know, just chillin’!

Just walking with Daddy in the baby Bjorn... Please notice the angry sleep face... she makes this face when she really doesn’t want to go to sleep because there are things going on around her but her eyelids finally get too heavy... adorable and oh so angry!

Until Later...