October 31, 2008

October 28, 2008

Excessive Celebration

I love watching SEC football. Think Florida will return the favor this year?

October 27, 2008

First Family Outing

On Sunday Jared took Makenna and I on our first trip (other than a doctor's appointment) outside the house. Where do you take a two week old? Yep, that is right....Ag Leader. It was fun to get out and to see how much progress is being made at Ag Leader. I think Jared enjoyed showing us what he has been up to the past few weeks. I had a good time and I think Makenna did too. Thanks Jared/Daddy for working so hard to provide for the three of us. You do GREAT work!!

Here are a few pictures of Jared and Makenna enjoying Ag Leader together.

October 25, 2008

Apparently I'm a parent

Not that I believe I've been living in some fantasy land these last two weeks. However, I don't think it has truly completely set in that I am now a dad - and always will be a dad.

A couple things that have made me realize it more in the last two days..

1. Picking up a prescription for Makenna, I had to fill out her information sheet. Doesn't sound like much, but I don't think I have ever once filled out any sort of registration for anyone else. I actually had to stop and think for every blank.

2. I went to Super Wal-mart today to get three things: An oil filter, anti-freeze, and diapers. Yes, my first diaper run. I stood there like a fool trying to figure out which one was the best deal and if they would correspond with the coupon I had.

Maybe its this way for every new parent. Or maybe I'm just weird.

My wonderful wife

We've had so many posts recently focused on little Makenna. This one is for my wife.

She is wonderful. I can't say enough how great of a woman she is. For all the reasons I loved her while it was just the two of us, I can now add in so many more watching her with our little girl.

I'm not sure if I could actually get out of bed in the middle of the night in the cold 3 times to sit and nurse a little baby who is sometimes more interested in playing with her own hand than burping. But Allison does it without complaining. She changes diapers, then often times gets to change them right away again after the tell-tale tooting sound.

And somehow she always makes me feel welcomed as soon as I walk in the door.

What a great gal I married. Yes, I know I "married up." And I've been happy about it ever since.

(pic from our honeymoon)

October 23, 2008

A different way to celebrate

How do you show your excitement for a new baby in the family? Apparently if you are a teacher at AGWSR, you buy two dozen pink or blue donuts and encourage the other teachers to fill up on one while admiring pictures of your little one.

Way to show off little Makenna, mom!

2 Week Appointment

Yesterday Makenna had her first doctor's appointment. She checked out great weighing a whopping 6 pounds 15 oz. She seems to be doing great and growing relatively well.

Here are some pictures that I took of her today. Enjoy!

October 20, 2008

Dave on the economy

As most of you know, I really like listening to what Dave Ramsey has to say about money. I think he is right on with almost every point he makes. I like his "in your face" type attitude on why most people need help with their money.

Below is an excerpt from an article he wrote about the ridiculous 700 billion bailout plan and why you shouldn't expect it to help you out at all. Don't count on the government. If you have a financial crisis of your own, you have to fix yourself. To read the whole article, click here.

"Don't react based on fear or panic. Another negative reaction is that you are looking to Washington to fix your problems. Why would you do that? They have never fixed your problems, and you want Obama or McCain to fix things. That's ridiculous; there has never been a president who can fix your problems. They always say they can and they never can."

It boggles my mind why the officials we elect to "help" us out can never actually get it right, especially when such a huge majority of people thought the plan was crazy. To see how your senators and representatives voted, click here and here.

700 Billion dollars is such a huge amount of money. Too bad the average American will never be helped out by it.

October 19, 2008

A couple of firsts...

Not that I will do this everytime Makenna does something new, but here are a couple more shots of a couple of firsts for her.

She enjoyed her first bath at home, which you can easily see by the photo.

Her first trek outside in the stroller. Thanks Great-grandma Pauline

Her first time seeing great grandma Annice. Even though she kept her eyes shut most of the time.

Be careful who builds your house

This post has been brewing for awhile...

On either side of our place, houses have been started. Both of them make me wonder if either company has any regard for the person who will own them.

The first two pictures are of a spec house that was started early summer, and most of the framing materials have been sitting outside ever since. If you don't know what Iowa weather does to lumber, throw a piece outside in the dirt, let it get wet, then baked by the sun over and over and see how good of condition it is in after a month. Then take that times 5 and that is what this house will be built out of.

These pictures were taken about a month or so ago and if you drive by now, you'll see all the 2x6 studs all bowed and warped. Nice.

This next house really baffled me. The builder started out right, then took a big shortcut by backfilling their house with black dirt pulled out of a ditch. Generally that is a big no-no, but what made it worse is the dirt was filled with roots and other organic material, meaning the dirt will constantly be settling around the house for years as things decompose.

I know I still have a lot to learn about building a superior house, but I hope I never lose passion of trying to do it right.

October 16, 2008

Her future's so bright............

Allison and Jeanne had Makenna basking in the Iowa sun this afternoon. (inside of course) All three seemed to enjoy it quite extensively.

Sleeping beauty

We had our two day appointment at the doctor today. Good news, everything is going great! All "A's" to start her testing career. Good weight, color, nursing habits, everything!

Here are a couple pics from around the house from today and yesterday. She is so cute.

October 15, 2008

Some big accomplishments

So in the past 24 hours, there have been some big accompishments around the Willis household. Number one: I figured out how to get internet hooked up. Yes, for some this is a no brainer, but I know about technology what Makenna knows about toilets. Number two: We had a good night last night. Makenna had to be woke up to be fed and fell back asleep pretty quickly again, meaning Allison and I were able to sleep up to that point.

Allison continues to be wonderwoman, healing quickly, adjusting to being a mom, and still finding time to thank me genuinely for "all my help" around the place. I think she just finds humor in watching me try to change diapers and me telling her she is doing a great job.

Allison's mom has been up to help out which has been a huge blessing. I went back to work for awhile today so Jeanne took over the place, cleaning up, cooking, and watching Makenna so Allison could get some much needed rest.

It was fun getting our little girl into the car seat for the first time and getting the heck out of the hospital yesterday. Even though the hospital staff was great, I was tired of conflicting suggestions from nurses, constant checks and people asking about color of poop.

Here is a picture of the first time in the car seat. I know, very cute.

Below are some pictures of adoring guests at the hospital. (Molly, Spring, and Stacy)

October 14, 2008

Heading home

Our room seemed to have a revolving door this morning as nurses, doctors, midwives, pediatricians, and more nurses all came in to check on Allison and Makenna. It appears all things are a go to head home soon after lunch. She should get her staples out here this morning and then it is time to have a nurse give her a bath. (Makenna, not Allison)

The best part of the morning was when Allison's midwife, who she really really likes, was holding Makenna and she had her first big spit up - all over her midwife. Very nice.

As busy as the last few days have been, I've had a little time to reflect on a few things. Here they are in no particular order...

-Birth is quite a miracle. To think that a baby could develop so perfectly for 9 months, fit inside her mother, and be born knowing exactly how to nurse is amazing to me. To witness first hand all the little joys of birth was more incredible than words can really describe.

-A screaming baby can be both wonderful and frustrating at the same time.

-Holding your own little one as she looks up at you with wide eyes is one of few life experiences that will be truly be remembered forever.

-Having visitors stop over to ooh and ahh is fun, provided they always get to change at least one diaper before they leave. :-) You are next Grandpa Jim.

-Hospital cots are the worst. Next time I will bring an air mattress. I've been to Guatemala, central Africa and camped all over and never laid on something so uncomfortable. Try sleeping on a bunch of 30 year old slinkies with a piece of cardboard over them and you'll get the idea.

-My wife is wonderful. She has been a champion of recovery and has almost always had a smile on her face. Plus she puts up with me. 3 days in a little room with me would drive most people crazy.

-I've made way too many references to past experiences with baby calves and sheep. While somewhat helpful at times, they generally prove to be annoying over time.

-It was nice not going to work these two days. I like my job, but this is way better. And apparently some subs can still work without a chaperone.

-We are excited to head home. While the constant supervision and advice is nice, I know we can figure it out in our own place.

-Makenna is such a blessing. Who would have thought after what happened in July, Allison would be able to carry full term and bring a new life into this world that is perfect in every way.

October 13, 2008

Me and Makenna

I'm having more and more fun holding Makenna all the time. She's got some great expressions and makes some funny squeaks. Some people say she looks like me. Hopefully her hair isn't receding by 29.

4 Generations photo opp

Today we had a nice visit from Great Grandma Pauline, and Grandma Jeanne and Grandpa Dave. Makenna cooperated for the most part, staying awake for some pictures and then falling asleep after only a small crying rage.

What a great potential photo. Makenna, however, didn't think so.


Grandmarshals to grandparents

One day they are grand marshals in the Carlisle homecoming parade. The next they are grandparents. What a weekend for Dave and Jeanne!

A good night and good news

We were pretty fortunate last night. All three of us were able to get some good sleep (at least for awhile) which really will help us out all day we hope. We're looking forward to a day of rest and more recovery and spending time as a family.

The doctors stopped by this morning and said everything with Allison and Makenna looked great. No one checked me out, but I'm doing ok too, thanks for asking. :-)

Allison's stitches are looking good and she is feeling great. Makenna is passing her tests (and passing a lot of other things) which makes us pretty happy.

Unless something comes up, we should be able to go home tomorrow (tuesday) morning. I think we'll be ready. Everyone says to stay as long as we can, but I think we are ready to head for our place and get out of this tiny room.

Thanks for everyone's well wishes, thoughts and prayers. It's amazing how well things have been going overall.

I'll put more pictures up as the day goes on.

October 12, 2008

More visitors

A lot more people were able to meet Makenna today. We had visitors pretty constantly starting late this morning.

I didn't think to grab the camera most of the time, but here are a couple of Makenna's first cousins on the Willis side.

A restless night

Last night the three of us "enjoyed" our first night at the hospital. Little Makenna had the best accommodations, she slept well and when she was hungry, she got fed. Allison and I on the other hand, weren't quite as lucky. Allison got to feast on broth, water and jello. I ate a lukewarm cafeteria burger and some weird tasting potatoes. I slept for about 5-6 hours on a cot the size of my body, no more, no less. Allison had a really tough night, only sleeping a couple hours at best with the emotions of the day catching up with her making it a really long night.

We really hope that tonight we (especially Allison) can get some good sleep and be ready for the day tomorrow.

October 11, 2008

My favorite picture so far

I really like this photo. The quality isn't too good, but it was taken soon after she returned from her tests and bath time.

Plus the hat reminds me of Donald from the Junkyard gang.

The first diaper change

Part of me thinks I should have taken a picture. Most of you should be glad I didn't. Talk about nasty.

Allison says I did a good job - I only used about 13 wipes. Picture my large hands trying to clean out all the little tiny nooks and crannies of the fugitive poop. To make it even better, I also got to enjoy the "fountain of youth" as the pee began spraying at the same time. What fun!

Oh well, potty training is right around the corner.

First Visitors

In addition to finally meeting her parents, Makenna also met all four of her grandparents today. Grandma Janelle and Grandpa Jim came after chores were done and Grandpa Jim saw her first. Soon Grandma Jeanne and Grandpa Dave were able to meet her and enjoy holding her for awhile.

Makenna pics

Here are a few more pictures of the little girl........