Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Exchange with Stephen

In homage to Kierstyn Krajca, here's a funny exchange I had with Stephen this evening. Note that we had finished the Bedtime Routine and lights were off.

Me (calling up the stairs): Stephen, are you in bed?

Sound effects: thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump-thump

Stephen: Yes!

I went up stairs and found him standing on his bed holding his plastic rifle.

I may be slow, but I think I figured that one out.

(A funny one for the 100th post on this blog!)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Rescue Rangers…Away!

Anyone out there remember the old cartoon Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers? It came out in 1989 so was a bit after my time. It was part of a Disney afternoon of cartoons – I vaguely remember the Duck Tales and TailSpin being on – and were a part of that lineup.

Anyway, we were visiting my in-laws some time ago and they had saved one Rescue Ranger episode and Stephen LOVED it. He insisted on watching “chipmunks” several times – which got old since they only recorded one episode. When we got back home, I was curious and found that someone has uploaded some full episodes on YouTube. So, Stephen and I watched a few and found he was hooked. I then discovered that Disney has released them on DVD (volumes 1 and 2 with a 3rd on the way). So, that was part of Stephen’s birthday.

Why am I bothering to share? To tell you that this is a very good series. As opposed to cartoons today, it didn’t feel the need to be explicitly educational. It also doesn’t have 1.4 kadrillion product tie-ins to tempt the kids. And, once you get over the improbable stuff, it’s fun for an adult (or at least me) to watch. The 5 rescue rangers have their distinct personalities that work very well together and the gags are funny even when you see them coming. Think of a less spooky “Scooby-Doo” where the crime solvers have real personalities and a little MacGyver thrown in. One more mark in its favor is that it deals with some serious themes at times. For example, choosing loyalty to friends over the threat of harm to yourself, joining a “cult” to belong to a group (a silly and good episode), and perseverance in your integrity. I recommend the DVD’s to my fellow parents out there. Note that some episodes are a bit scary. I haven't seen them in stores, but they are on Amazon:

One last note on the series: there’s still a serious fan following out there. They have their own Wiki. Also, the best fan fiction I’ve ever seen is for the Rescue Rangers. Yes, I confess I’ve read a bit of fan fiction, mostly Harry Potter, and it’s nearly all utter dreck by fans who can’t write. However, this one is done by someone who is a genuine creative artist. Thus, the first (and likely only) fan fiction I will recommend is Of Mice and Mayhem. This is definitely PG and will make more sense if you know the characters.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Lydia Grace at 1.5 weeks

Lydia is about 1.5 weeks old now. She's been a much easier baby than Stephen in many ways. That may be her or it may be our better experience. Or maybe I'm just sleeping deeper now and not waking up for all the feedings during "third shift".

For my money, there's a lot to be said for having done this before. I remember you have to dab alcohol around the cord, change her frequently, hold her head up, etc.

I'm also comfortable enough in my manhood to say it: all these little pink outfits she has are really, really cute.

She's also made me realize how BIG Stephen is. I was holding her one evening before putting her down in the bassinet (sp?). I then went up to make sure Stephen was still under the covers (he wasn't). I looked at Stephen in his twin bed and realized he's grown so much! He's huge! And, he's reverting a little and asking me to carry him around the house - especially in the morning. He's such a grown up boy - talking, running, playing; and he has a GREAT imagination. It's amusing to sit and watch and listen to him play by himself - and fun to join in!

My mom and dad came to visit this past Saturday - obviously they were granddaughter deprived. One funny event was my dad, me, and Stephen (chief helper) fixing the upstairs toilet. It went as usual: my dad did most of it, I observed and learned, and Stephen "helped." "Helping" consisted mostly of clamping the pliers on anything that afforded clamping, including the towels, my jeans, the edge of the sink, and the parts we were currently not using.

Outlandish prediction: Stephen will either be a plumber or a rocket scientist.

Blatant Advertising

Greetings all. As chair of our church's pastor search committee I am committed to getting the word out anywhere I can. So, I'm posting our pulpit vacancy to all (both?) of you that keep up with this blog in case you want to direct someone our way:


Emmanuel Presbyterian Church is in Franklin, NC. And I'm blatantly trying to up our search results in Google - just in case.

We now return to our regularly scheduled lack of blog posts.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Installed Deacon

Yes, I am now “Deacon-Lee” (har, har). I was elected, ordained (as a deacon – gotta do it again for the different office apparently), and installed. We have a great group of deacons. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting to know them. And now, down to business! We have the disadvantage of starting from scratch as there were no deacons in the church at the time we were elected. So, we’re not just going to figure out how to get the mower to start, but how to set some policies on our activities.

It’s times like this that I’m thankful for the connections we have in the Presbyterian form of church government. We can ask our nearby churches in our presbytery about how their deacons work. We’ve also starting making plans for a “field trip” to other churchs’ diaconate meetings to see how they do things.

We also have one of those great problems for a church to have – we’re running short on space in our building for what we want and need to do. And that is a deacon problem.

Stephen update

Stephen recently had his third birthday and is doing very well. He had his checkup this week (his first visit to the dr. since his 2-year checkup!) and is 38.75 in. tall and 37 lbs. Since September, for two mornings a week, Stephen has been attending a little preschool affiliated with a local church. I've been very pleased with that experience as has Stephen. I'm glad that he has part of his routine that will be the same during these days of adjustment.
He is adjusting well, we think. Lee went back to work today, which was a little difficult since Stephen had gotten used to having Daddy around. He has regularly been more clingy with Lee, so this was expected...
It has been so fun watching him grow and learn. I'm still amazed at how much he notices and shows interest in!

Stephen at one of his three birthday parties...

Stephen on his actual birthday.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Lydia Pictures!

Follow the link for Lydia Pictures!

Courtesy of Shutterfly:


Thursday, November 08, 2007

Baby Is Here!!!!

Please welcome Lydia Grace Nickles, a child of the Covenant, into this world.

Some stats:
  • born at 12:13 pm
  • 8 lbs. 1 oz.
  • 20.5 inches
  • dark hair
  • very beautiful
Kristy is fine, baby is fine. I'm not doing so bad myself.

Stephen had a big smile on his face at seeing his baby sister. When asked what he thought of her, he said: "She's pretty."

I agree.

Pictures are forthcoming - one thing at a time (such as a shower for me!).

We appreciate and continue to desire your prayers for us and Lydia.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

On the Way!!

We're on the way to the hospital!!!!!!!!!

We would appreciate your prayers for Kristy and daughter.