Friday, April 28, 2006

Name that Caption

Who knew a simple colander could bring so much amusement into our house?

Monday, April 24, 2006

Refrigerator repairman

"For the love of God do I have to get my own diapers around this house? Sheesh!"

In actuality Gus discovered he could open and close the dresser drawer tonight. Owen was so excited at his brother's discovery that he pulled himself up to Gus at the expense of Gus's diaper.

Reminds you of the SNL skit with Dan Ackroyd coming to fix the refrigerator with some sizable crack showing. Cheers!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

To Do Lists

These past two days have comprised one of the busiest weekends Amy & I have had since becoming parents. We are heading out of town next weekend and had to cram like college students in order to get things done before we leave. Like classic ISFJ's, we sat down on Friday and made our list of things to do. While we didn't get to eveything on the list, we did get a lot accomplished.

  • Devised a plan at 5:00am for neighbors' barking dog to sleep with the fishes
  • Got the car serviced
  • Boosted Target stock price by 10% with the Rutledge bi-weekly shopping spree
  • Racing an impending thunderstorm, got three inches of pollen washed off the car and the yard mowed
  • Helped our buddy Mike transport a chair to Chapel Hill
  • Gave the boys their first snare drum solo
  • Took the boys out to eat for the second successful time
  • Watched our Hurricanes get clubbed by the Canadiens 6-1
  • Bathed the monsters
  • Walked Tucker & his pals Digby & MacKay before the dog sleepover at our house
  • Sank into the couch & chair fast asleep


  • Amy walked the boys to church while I went early to prepare for the drum/piano duet that will no doubt be reviewed in your local paper tomorrow
  • Fed the boys -- Owen yakked -- bath #2
  • Checked on the pups next door -- ear rubbing breaks good for them and us
  • Amy's grocery store run with the boys
  • Derek vs. the bathroom tile floor (I'm ripping out the tile floor so our neighbor Viktor can put in a new floor for us while we're gone next week). Hour 1 begins...
  • Dust & flying tiles 1, Derek 0 -- trip to Ace Hardware for goggles and face masks
  • Ventured back to church for a welcome back ceremony for our pastor Joanne (Joanne 1, breast cancer 0 -- woohooo!)
  • Clean up boys, bedtime stories, & put the boys down
  • Tucker and his daily camina
  • Pop open the bottle of pinot grigio on a gorgeous spring evening, post to the blog
  • Exhale

We'll get to the rest of the list later. Have a good week -- cheers!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

One Notch on the Belt

Year One has come and gone since the boys were born. Some days it seems like just yesterday that we were headed to the hospital at nearly thirty-three weeks, convinced of a false alarm. And other days April 15, 2005 seems like a long time ago. So many new changes have taken place since then that it seems like a longer time than it truly has been.

Parenthood is such a unique journey. You can't prepare for it. Amy & I quickly realized that we had a lot to learn about raising two little boys. But we also learned that in so many situations there isn't a right or wrong way -- just whatever it takes to get through it.

The first night we brought the boys home we were not putting their diapers on tight enough, and we had to change them and their crib sheets half a dozen times before morning. Buying a vehicle with two screaming boys -- one exploding with poop -- holed up in a tiny financing office was a memorable experience. Starting an argument at 3:00am with your wife because there is not a pacifier to be found or chucking a tennis shoe at your husband because you are both so tired you can't see straight. There were certainly moments that test a parent's will.

But all of those are forgotten in an instant when little Owen goes into a gut-wrenching laughing fit as you kiss his belly. Or when Gus gets so excited standing up in his crib for the first time. Or when the two boys explode in laughter as they experience a bubble bath for the first time.

The little monsters are our pride and joy. We can't wait for what Year Two will bring us.


Thursday, April 13, 2006


As Derek mentioned, we all had a great time seeing the grandparents last weekend and celebrating some early birthdays. The boys soaked in so much attention they've been recovering the last few days.

Relaxing on the hammock

Strolling incognito

Sleeping through breakfast

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

A grand birthday weekend

The grandparents journeyed to North Cackalackee last weekend to celebrate Owen & Gus's first birthday. The weekend started off a little rough as Owen came down with a nasty fever and cold. But he recuperated by the end of the weekend and in time to enjoy a little cake. The boys took in all the attention they could muster. Amy & I enjoyed having eight willing helping hands with the boys (and we even got to have dinner out with our neighbors Chad & Claudia one night -- a rarity indeed!). We capped off the weekend with a low-key birthday party complete with eastern NC barbecue and a homemade birthday cake on Saturday and the boys being dedicated at church on Sunday. A grand time was had by all.

Ma the cakemaker prepares her puppy dog masterpiece.

The boys' first birthday cake.

The mad hatter prepares for the celebration.

Owen 1, cake 0.

"Over here please -- this one is out of that tasty icing on top. Chop, chop."

Present time complete with outfits, swimming trunks, books, baseball cards & birthday cards to chew on.

Owen is captivated by Granddaddy's reading of the fruit book.

Gus takes in lessons on how to watch the Masters from his two grandfathers. It's an art form, young man -- you'll learn.

Owen was quite at home strolling with his Nana to help him forget his crummy fever.

Never one to be left out, Tucker inserts himself into reading time with some helpful licks.

Gus shows GJ and Pappy the art of table surfing.


We celebrate small milestones these days. Owen learned to clap his hands this week. Gus stood up in his crib for the first time yesterday. Today, Gus displayed his future love of vegging out in front of the TV and watching football.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Spring scenes

Ants have invaded the casa de Rutledge this past week. With the extremely mild winter we had, the ants have been out in full force this spring. We broke out the cinnamon, the Combat traps, and ultimately the Raid. Rutledges 1, Ants 0.

It was nice knowing you little fellow.

Outdoors the colors have returned...

...and a lizard takes in a window sill.

Simple toys

Pans have emerged as a simple pleasure. They're shiny, they bang, and they taste good.

Gus skipped his introductory lesson on chord progressions and went straight to his Hendrix impersonation. He's quite the little Voodoo Chile.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


President Bush was at an elementary school talking to the schoolchildren and decided to take some questions from the class. Little Johnny raised his hand.

"Mr. President, I have two questions. First, why did you invade Iraq when there were no weapons of mass destruction and didn't have UN support? And second, how come you are President when Al Gore got more votes than you did in 2000?"

At that moment the recess bell rang & Bush responded, "Ok class, we will finish the questions after recess."

The kids went outside and played, then returned to the class for more time with President Bush.

Little Bobby raised his hand. "Mr. President, I have four questions. First, why did you invade Iraq when there were no weapons of mass destruction and didn't have UN support? Second, how come you are President when Al Gore got more votes than you did in 2000? Third, why did our recess bell ring 30 minutes early today. And fourth, where's Johnny?"