Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Not a Murmur

IMAG1661.jpg by gkhamilton
IMAG1661.jpg, a photo by gkhamilton on Flickr.

Daddy and Lena try out a few more urban hiking trails together. The air was chilly that morning, so we both stayed close to home.

Not many people know this, but baby Lena was diagnosed with a heart murmur during her two month checkup. Thankfully, the latest news broke last Friday: the doc told Kathy that all signs of the heart murmur have disappeared!

Our 15 lb. 4 oz. daughter is already 25 ¾ inches long, easily ensuring her place in the 95th percentile of 4 month old babies in the U.S., length wise AND weight wise. She’s a lot of baby to love, and we’ve got a lot of love for her.

IMAG1599.jpg Hopefully, Lena won’t inherit Daddy’s appetite. The last thing I want to do is pick up ANOTHER side job to cover the resulting grocery bills.

Lena and I savored some more Daddy-daughter time together this past week. IMAG1627.jpgIMAG1657.jpg On Wednesday alone, the two of us managed to squeeze in a few frosted urban trails in Washington County, a bodily torture session at L.A. Fitness, lunch, and tons of other running around… all before our E.P.I.C. student ministry shindig that night.

I’ll let Lena have the last word:

Hit the “Play” button above for last week’s short video clip of Lena cooing and yelping herself into an inevitable quick grin.

Good Morning, 2012!

This is a re-post from January 1, with photos added on 1/18/12 to this and some previous posts.
IMAG1597_edited-1.jpg by gkhamilton
IMAG1597_edited-1.jpg, a photo by gkhamilton on Flickr.

The first sunrise of 2012 over Mount Hood, as viewed from the Delta ramp at PDX Airport

That picture of the beauty of 2012’s first morning was taken after my last picture of the beauty of 2011’s final evening, DSC_0290_edited-1.JPG of Lena taking a bath.

Tired as I was from our (relatively) late night celebration of New Year’s Eve…DSC_0294_edited-1.JPG…I managed to stay awake through my super-early morning shift at Delta and hurry home to enjoy Lena on New Year’s Day.

My resolutions for 2012 run the gamut from physical goals (gain a few more pounds of lean muscle, get more sleep) to overall self-improvement (put others’ needs ahead of my own, arrive early for everything, take more time to contemplate God’s Word as I read through it again this year).

All of that aside, the most important thing that I can accomplish this year is to be a loving daddy to Lena. I hope and pray that she will grow up to love God and others, as well as fight against oppression, poverty, injustice, and hate.

But first, we’ll just let Lena do what she does best: DSC_0341_edited-1.JPG Be an adorable baby girl.

2012, here we come!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lena's First Christmas

Happy New Year!! IMG_3842.JPG I still have three more continents to cover in my Top 5 Recent Trips countdown on BlogSpot, but the Top 3 international spots will have to wait until I find time to resume the countdown here in March. 2012 is already off to an unbelievably hectic start, so I’ll need to prioritize my time. And other than God, guess who gets top priority?

Our adorable baby daughter Lena is nearly 4 months old now. The time that flew by between 9/10/11 and Christmas simply vaporized. Here is my best attempt to capture some of the special moments that led into Lena’s first Christmas season:

IMAG1560.jpg Dusk beats us to the punch during an urban hike with Lena at the Tualatin Hills Nature Reserve.

DSC_0536.JPG Falling asleep with Lena… DSC_0038_02_edited-1.JPG ...And later, groggily waking up to a surprise appearance in bed with that little cutie. I wonder how she got up there-- by climbing in all by herself?

DSC_0808_edited-1.JPG Picking up Lena's first Christmas tree: We live right around the corner, so I just carried it back to our house in my shorts and flip flops.

DSC_0831_edited-1.JPG Lena gets an early December bath.

Flying home from Munich to bring Lena her first Christmas present, from Germany (No pictures yet, but don’t worry… later this month, I’ll post this photo and some of last month's Germany pictures here on BlogSpot)

DSC_0030_02_edited-1.JPG Just before Christmastime, Kathy and Lena gaze outside from our living room window. Every now and then, the view is better on the INSIDE!

IMAG1514.jpg Lena sits on Santa’s lap… IMAG1516_edited-1.jpg...and with us at our dessert table in the gym after the Aloha Church of God Christmas Extravaganza.

DSC_0097_02.JPG Kathy plays guitar and sings Christmas carols to a mesmerized Lena.

Family Christmas photo:
IMG_3828_edited-1.JPG The day after I spoke at the WPC undergrad commencement ceremony (my parents showed up to support me), both sets of our parents and Mike & Girl visited our church to hear me preach the Sunday before Christmas. We snapped a blurry family Christmas photo (above) before heading out to Izzy's Pizza later that afternoon.IMAG1542.jpg

P1020621_edited-1.jpgDSC_0205_edited-1.JPGP1020610.JPGDSC_0216_edited-3.JPG (Photos taken by my mom) After much anticipation throughout the Advent season, we celebrated Christmas day with Lena and our family at my parents’ house in Vancouver.

To start off the new year on a happy note, here are a few cute pictures of baby Lena from the past month or so:

Sharing our first Christmas with Lena was a blessing like no other. The road hasn't been entirely smooth, but we finally made the leap from celebrating a holy Child's birth at Christmas to welcoming in a child of our own! I can only dream of what lies ahead for Lena in 2012!

Coming later this month in the next few months here on BlogSpot photos from the famed M√ľnchner Christkindlmarkt in Munich, Germany last month, the latest E.P.I.C. student ministry update, and more!