Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Six months!

I can't believe Cade is six months old today! It's hard to think that we've not been sleeping well for half of a year. We've functioned on a lot less sleep than we thought we could, especially Susie. For those of you that don't know, Susie is like a cat - she needs like 18 hours of sleep a day, so this has been more a labor of love for her than me. Plus, I get a couple nights each week to regroup when Susie and Cade are up in Bloomington. But.....I have to say (and Susie would agree) that Cade is COMPLETELY worth it. His second tooth just popped through the gum today, so that Christmas song about two front teeth has been running through my head. He's been eating his carrots very well, even the first day we introduced them to him (documented pictorally below). Since that first time he still makes the funniest face on the first bite when he's not sure about the taste, but after a couple bites he remembers and just chows down.

Tomorrow we fly to Colorado for Christmas. It may be an adventure because of the weather. It also may be an adventure if Cade is still feeling cranky about his tooth coming in. We'll see!

I sat and watched Cade sleep for a while this morning and a line from the Crowder song a couple of posts ago kept going through my head: "Praise our God, for He is good." I was praying for him and trying to think of all the things I needed to be praying for him about, things like health, growth, successful teething, good eating, praying for his future wife, praying for his spiritual growth, you know, good stuff like that. But I kept getting distracted by those simple words: "Praise our God, for He is good." There are so many times I spend too much time asking God for stuff. Most of the time it's good stuff, but I really do spend a lot of time asking. I thought about James 1:19 this morning: "Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak...." I thought about how that could relate to my prayer life, and I tried to just listen and dwell on those words. I kept coming back to "Praise our God, for He is good," and I sang those words over and over in my mind so I wouldn't wake Cade up. God knows my heart, he knows my desires for Cade and for the development of our family. He wants me to communicate those to him, but he also wants me to listen. I haven't been very good at listening lately. Praise our God for six months.
This is not very good Mommy.
Don't really need to comment on this look of total disgust.
Carrots taste better if you let them soak in through the chin and cheeks.
Ok, you guys were right. This stuff is actually pretty good!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

One Year

I know we put that video up this morning, but I've specifically eyeing today for a post for one simple reason: It's been one year to the day since we found out we were having a baby! On one hand it doesn't really seem that long, but on the other hand we've experienced a LOT in that time. It was a great Chrismas gift last year, and we continue to be blessed by the arrival of Cade into our home. This year I have a new view of the Christmas story. Now that I have an intimate knowledge of pregnancy, the birthing process, and the first few months of raising a baby I look at the birth of Christ a little differently. What was it like for Mary to travel on a donkey to Bethlehem in the late months of pregnancy? How much did he weigh when he was born? Were Mary and Elizabeth the only moms in Israel that knew the gender of their babies before they were born? What was it like birthing a baby in a stable? It's such a far cry from the ultra-clean atmosphere in today's labor and delivery rooms. How long was it before Jesus slept through the night? How old was he when he cut his first tooth? What did they do for diapers? Did they have one that they were continually cleaning, or did they rotate a handful? Did he cry a lot, or was he the perfect holy child we see in every nativity scene? Did Mary and Joseph hold him extra carefully because they knew they were holding the God of the universe in their arms? I think for me it's just been another facet of God and his gift to us that I haven't realized or fully recognized before.

Those are just a few of the questions I've been thinking about while falling asleep lately. Speaking of sleep, Cade's been doing a lot better in the last week or so. When he is feeling well he really is a pretty easy baby to take care of. We've even had a few nights where he's slept for over seven hours straight. Those extra few hours add a lot of comfort to the night for sure.

Since it's been a while since the last post, I have quite a few pictures to show off. Cade's lower left tooth is good and in now, but we haven't been able to get it in a picture so that will have to wait.

Anyone who has held Cade knows he LOVES to bounce. He'd much rather be in an upright position than laying or sitting down, and he prefers to bounce. This is a great arm workout, but now that he's gaining weight (he's about 16 pounds right now) Vee Vee figured we needed some relief. She got Cade a Johnny Jump Up and he likes to sit in it and bounce on the floor. I thought they quit making these things, but apparently they haven't. It's also a great teething device; Cade likes to chew on the rim right in front of his face as he bounces around.
Cade is working on his vibe so when he turns 30 or so (later if you ask Susie) he can effectively woo a lady. Here he is working on his "reclining come hither" pose. It's pretty easy when you look at this picture to tell whose eyes he has. (And you can tell by process of elimination whose nose he has.)
This chair came from Susie's Grandmother, and Cade likes to sit in it and be rocked in it. We caught him surveying his domain here.
Susie's family came in for Thanksgiving. Chili elected to not look at the camera for this shot. Keeping him in the camera's field of vision was enough of a chore so we took what we could get.
A few days after Thanksgiving the turkey's wishbone was laying around. I challenged Cade to a wishbone duel, and well, you can see who won that exchange. I wonder if he wished for something more flavorful than rice cereal.

Cade is completely enthralled with any kind of light. So the Christmas season has been fun for him because everywhere we go people have put up more lights! Cade and Susie spent some time in front of our tree looking at the ornaments and lights.

Yes, he just may be a future engineer. He can already count to 634, and he's got the first fifteen digits of e and the first eight of Pi memorized. (He can drool on his shirt real good too.)
One of the girls in the youth group is a budding photographer and she came over one morning a couple weekends ago to take some family Christmas pictures. She did a great job. Here are a few of those pictures. Many thanks Jackie!
Look what we got for Christmas! It's a baby!
I love this picture of Susie and Cade. He's wearing a Christmas outfit her Grandmother got him. You can tell he's showing it off here: "And just look at this ornate needlework!"
This is the big teddy bear my Grandpa got for me when I was born. Now Cade gets to use it and show off his new favorite thing: Christmas lights!

Merry Christmas from the Gronseths!


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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thankful

I feel like Captain Obvious when I say that this year I am very thankful for family. And not just family, but especially my little boy Cade and his wonderful mommy. I knew Susie was a selfless person, but it's truly amazing to watch her with Cade. I couldn't ask for a better pair of people to call my wife and son. Yesterday I was up in my office in the attic and Susie called me from the kitchen and said I should come down. We'd tried giving Cade rice in his milk and he just didn't like it. I think it was because he had to drink it out of a sippy cup and just came out too fast. Well, Susie had mixed the rice in with less milk and formed more of a paste. This was partially out of necessity since he's been eating milk faster than she can make it. Cade loved the rice paste and it was already everywhere by the time I got downstairs! We had a great time feeding him and we took some pictures and a video. So I guess this begins the process of being eaten out of house and home? Up until now feeding Cade has cost $0. I'm suddenly feeling the need to apologize to my mom and dad.

First, here's a picture of Cade the other night. We were dancing to Ben Folds and all of a sudden he'd had enough activity and fell right asleep in my arms mid-dance-move. We were cracking up.
Now, on to pictures of rice! In looking at this picture I suddenly realized how unsafe we as parents are. You'll notice we keep Cade's bumbo seat right between the knives and an outlet.
This stuff is INCREDIBLE! (Unintentional or intentional thumbs up?)
Where's that spoon? Let me at it!
Finger lickin' good. Colonel Sanders has nothing on this rice! (Is Cade allowed to say that in Kentucky?)
Bib-suckin' good. He was so delirious with the new food he didn't realize he had some on his nose.


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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Rice!

It's been a big week for us! We took Cade to the doctor last Tuesday for his next round of shots and checkup. He weighed 15 pounds, 2 ounces (40th percentile) and was 24 3/4 inches tall (25th). He's slowly gaining on the other kids his age despite being six weeks early. He had to endure four shots and was a big trooper. It was definitely more traumatic for him this time. It's tough to watch your kid cry hard like that. :(



That night we fed him solid food for the first time. Susie found the organic brown rice cereal, so we mixed that up with some of mom's milk and got to feeding! First we tried one of his normal bottles but the rice was stopping up the nipple so we switched to a sippy cup with a soft top and bigger holes. He made some funny faces for us, either because the food was coming out so fast or because it was a new taste and consistency.


This kid has no clue what's about to hit him in the mouth.
"Do you seriously expect me to eat this crap on a regular basis? Where's the plain old milk?"

On Thursday, while at the sitter's in Bloomington, he threw up. We wondered if it was in reaction to one of the vaccines he received or if he just wasn't used to the rice. He wasn't eating much at all and Susie got some Pedialyte and he was able to drink that and keep it down (and stay hydrated). Things went well until Saturday. I was flying home from a business trip to Florida (more on that later) and Susie was driving home from B-town. She may have caught the virus from Cade because she was sick and weak driving home. When she got back to Owensboro she went to the Estes' house and was taken to urgent care by them and another friend, Lisa Walker. The doctor told her it was probably a virus and to sleep it off and drink lots of fluids. He gave her some medicine that would knock her out and she's been pretty much sleeping ever since (it's 5:30 pm and she left the doctor around 1:30 yesterday)! She's kept some food down today, and I've been able to spend a lot of quality time with my boy.

After a rough night last night and getting him ready to go to church in time for soundcheck I have to say that I have a new respect for what Susie does when she takes Cade to Bloomington and really for any single parent out there. So Cade and I have had a couple prayer times for Mommy and are hoping she feels better soon!

In other news, I was able to see the space shuttle launch on Friday night! It was supposedly one of the last night launches, and I was able to watch it from our plant in Merritt Island. Air Liquide supplies all of NASA's nitrogen requirements for the launch via pipeline. The plant is about nine miles from the pad, and I climbed up on top of one of our tanks to watch it. The pictures I've posted don't do it justice. The sky was as bright as day, the rumble was loud, and the earth shook pretty violently where we were (nine miles away!). It was a pretty incredible thing to watch. Made me wonder what it would be like strapped into the thing that makes the earth shake like that.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Happy Halloween

Cade continues to grow and is still a super happy baby boy. He is so much fun. I'm still not a morning person, but he encourages me to be awake in the morning since that's when he likes to play and is the most active. He's started doing a squealing laugh that is hilarious. There is absolutely no way to not smile when you hear him laughing. And sometimes when he laughs he'll kind of pull his head into his shoulders like a turtle, shrug his shoulders in and up, turn his head to the side a little, and smile really big like he just can't stand it. How many of you just emulated him while reading that description? I did. :) It's about the cutest thing I've ever seen. He's developed into a very ticklish kid; his feet, legs, tummy, and arms are all fair game. He'll play and laugh for long periods of time. He also likes to have his legs and arms pumped and still loves to bounce around. (After re-reading this last paragraph I realize that it is full on information that parents love to recount but the average bystander quickly bores of. Sorry, haha.)

His first Halloween costume was pretty standard baby fare. He was a pumpkin. Many thanks to Nana for providing it. The costume was a little big this year, but that means he'll be able to wear it next year too! The hat kept falling down over his eyes, but the bigness of the costume added to the cuteness of it too. We took him trick-or-treating at our friend Carla's house. She is a great friend of ours and has been faithful to pray for us and Cade before Susie was pregnant, when Susie was pregnant, and since Cade has been born.

Yesterday, we estimated he's around 16 pounds! We'll know for sure how big he's grown in a couple weeks when he goes in for his four month shots, but he's really filling out well and looking great (IMHO). Here are some pictures. The first few pictures were taken on a recent trip to daddy's new home office. I've recently started working from home (still working for Air Liquide). I LOVE being able to see Cade and Susie periodically throughout the day. Susie will usually bring him up into my office in the attic for a few minutes in the morning when he wakes up. Talk about a morale booster!
Someone's tickling my legs!
Now someone's tickling my tummy!
Cute smiley/laughing pictures.
He has the biggest blue eyes, just like his mommy.
Trick or treat!
Cade and Carla.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

4 months!

Today is Cade's 4 month birthday. I have new pictures on the camera, but I'm on the road and don't have the cable to upload them with me. So here are a couple to show you how far he's come (the second one is from a couple weeks ago). Thanks for all the prayers for our little guy. He's truly a blessing to us. I'll get more pictures up this weekend hopefully!


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Sleepy Saturday

It's been a long time since I've been able to sleep in. I didn't feel that great today, but getting to sleep in really helped. Susie was spying on us and took this picture with her cell phone.

Monday, October 6, 2008

15 weeks

Today Cade is 15 weeks old. I am still amazed whenever I look at him at how good God is. We are loving the time we have with him. It's something to watch him grow and see how much he has changed even in this short amount of time in the world. He is getting bigger and filling out great. He still eats a ton. We think he's up over 14 pounds now. He's been sleeping a lot better now too. He'll usually go to be around 8 or 9 and sometimes sleeps up to 6 or 7 hours. So a lot of nights he'll get up around 3 or 4 am and then sleep the rest of the night. The fact that he only gets up once most nights is huge. That allows one of us to sleep through the night and the other doesn't feel like a zombie the next day. I'm still extremely biased, but I think he's one of the cutest babies I've ever seen. It had been a while since we've had a picture session, so here are a few pictures we took yesterday (and one from a week ago sporting his Rockies gear which is unfortunately seeing little use this postseason).

That's right Cade, C IS for Colorado Rockies. You'll grow into that hat and we'll get you another uniform that fits you when you do.
Within the last week or two he's started to figure out he can clasp his hands together. It's pretty cute. He's been doing the tongue thing for at least a month and a half. But the hand thing makes him look like a scheming baby.
He smiles a lot more now too. It's really a great feeling to walk into the room and see him smile at me when he notices I'm there.
All I can think of when I see this picture is Cartman singing "O Holy Night."
Pre to mid-sneeze. Post-sneeze. Bless you!
That sneeze felt GOOD!
He had just FILLED his shorts in this picture. The bombs he drops have been getting larger and larger. I am convinced Pampers Swaddlers are a gift from God. Diapers are truly a product where you get what you pay for. Leaking is bad. Containment is good. Containment produces smiles all around.
I think he looks less and less like a wrinkly infant all the time. Compare this picture with one from right after birth and it doesn't even look like the same child. It's kind of hard to see in this smaller picture, but he has beautiful blue eyes just like his mommy.
My baby and my baby.
Here are a couple smiley pictures. He has a drool-covered lower lip more now. We wonder if he's starting to cut teeth a little bit.
These last couple pictures were taken last Wednesday at youth. Our kids did a great job and wrapped between 80 and 90 shoeboxes in preparation for our church to fill them for Operation Christmas Child. I wasn't sure how the church would respond, but we had over 200 total boxes (wrapped and unwrapped) and on Sunday only a few were left over after people came and took what they wanted to fill. I was blown away with the support of our congregation. This is a great ministry that helps kids all over the world experience the joy of a Christmas gift. Please take the time to fill a shoebox or 40 and find a place to drop them off sometime before collection week (which is November 17-24). The website has all the details you need like what to put in the boxes, what not to put in the boxes, and where to take them.
We sang "God of Justice" by Tim Hughes during the service on Sunday. This song has great lyrics about acting out God's love instead of just providing lip service. The lyrics in the bridge say, "Fill us up and send us out." I know he's referring to people, but I kept looking at the boxes on the stage. Pretty cool.



Here's a video where Cade shows you about 80 different expressions in about 30 seconds while kicking his legs like a crazy person. He finishes up with a little smile. He also shows off his newfound hobby of grabbing his hands.


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