Sunday, April 28, 2013

Laundry Time...

Bossy and Brax,
One of mommy's least favorite chores is laundry. She hates it. So, on Sundays, daddy usually gets up early and helps out so she doesn't have to do it. Plus, we all need some clean clothes with all the droppings that you two are leaving everywhere.
Today, we worked on laundry as a team.
Well...kinda. You guys really just rode in the basket with the clean clothes and unfolded all my hard work. But, that is alright. It was fun to spend time together.

Somebody didn't want to leave either.
I love you little dudes.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Picnic Buddies...

Today, we had a picnic with friends. You guys had a great time playing with Jaylen and Brooklyn.
Looking forward to many more in the future.
Love you boys.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Treat Celebration...

Little Dudes,
Today, we spend some time "late" celebrating my birthday. It was fun and we shared treats. Sssshhh! Mother would not approve.

But, since I am the late bday boy...I make the rules.
I love you.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Small Actions...

One thing I want you to remember is that small actions can change some one's life, make them smile, and/or brighten their day. Far too often in this life, we get caught up in our worries that we forget about others. However, we should never be too busy to share a smile, a laugh, a kind word, or our time. I try to practice those things on a daily basis, but I cannot say that I always succeed. Yesterday, I was reminded of how kind a person can be.
While I was sitting at my desk on my birthday, a super sweet and funny lady that I work with brought me a birthday present. I was quite surprised to receive a gift. But, I was not surprised by her kindness as she is one of the most generous people I know. This small act helped make my birthday special. It helped remind me the kindness of people. Also, inside my awesome birthday gift, there was a special present for you guys. A movie that I think you guys like...
So, remember to be kind. Remember to think of others. Remember to share joy with others.
I love you guys.
PS: Thanks Tiana for thinking of my boys and myself.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Backwards Baths...

Boston & Braxton,
Here are some pictures from your backwards baths in the sink.

I love you guys!



Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Helicopter...

Papi got us an awesome helicopter to play with together. You guys loves to watch it fly around.

And, when the time comes, we always put it away.

I love you guys.


Friday, April 19, 2013

It's Time to Dance...

Dancing Dudes,
You guys love to dance. Whenever the music comes on, you guys start to move. You have done this since you were in your mommy's belly. I love that you guys love music because your mommy and I love music. Unfortunately though, only one of us can move like you guys.

When MC Hammer gets one can touch this...

And, when Mommy drops a beat and the roll calls start, Bossy begins to shake...

I love you guys and your little shaking butts.


Thursday, April 18, 2013

So Big and PattyCake...

You love to play "So Big" and "PattyCake" with Mommy. And, she loves to play it with you all the time. And, I love watching it.
You are so big...

You love PattyCake...

Love you big boy!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Moments of Reflection...

This week has been a tragic for thousands upon thousands of people. Lives were forever altered this week. Lives were lost. People were taken far too soon. As I sit and watch my baby boys sleep, I am still reminded of the good this world possesses. While so much tragedy and hardship surround us as human beings, we cannot forget the glorious blessings of life, love and family. Those who lost a piece of one of those glorious blessings are in our thoughts and prayers. I, like the rest of you, cannot even begin to comprehend these tragedies. That fact restores a little of my faith in humanity. If we were able to understand these horrific events, it would not bode well for the future of our species. The fact that these events bring tears to our eyes, break our fragile hearts and make us ponder our very existence reaffirms to me the goodness in the hearts of human beings. These past few nights, I have thought a lot about the tragedy in Boston. As I have held my wife and snuggled with my babies, I pondered so many questions. Tonight, as news of the West, Texas tragedy hit the news feeds, I did the same thing. I held my family close and pondered these tragedies. I share with you my moments of reflection. Peace and love to all of you.

Do not let the senseless actions of a deranged person or group of persons make you question humanity. While many horrible things happen in this world, the majority of people are caring, loving and giving people. Humanity is inherently good. Good will always prevail over evil. Love will always overcome hate. You have to look no further than our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who overcame death and... the most powerful evil to have everlasting life. In the beautiful words of Izumi Shikibu, “Even when a river of tears courses through this body, the flame of love cannot be quenched.” The true love that resides in the hearts of humanity will continually change the world for the better. That is an undeniable certainty. Prayers and love for Boston and all those affected by this tragedy.

It is times like these that people's faith is tested. It has been a disheartening week, and tonight's news will, without a doubt, add to the fear, uncertainty and sadness of people around the nation. In the words of Coach K, "There is a destination beyond the devastation". For me, sitting here, that is much easier typed than actually realized. For those suffering, it is a much more difficult task see the destination beyond. But, it is there. At all times, we should remain vigilant in our love and service of our fellow human beings. But, in times like these, it is more important than ever. Prayers, positive thoughts, and assistance are needed for people suffering from these horrific tragedies. I cannot even begin to comprehend the hardships that many are facing. Still, I (we) mourn with them.

While many of us cannot do nearly as much as we would like, we can each do a little. Share a prayer with a loved one. Think of those in need. Help someone in your own neighborhood. Be kind. Be loving. In the words of Henri Frederic Amiel, “Life is short and we have never too much time for gladdening the hearts of those who are traveling the dark journey with us. Oh be swift to love, make haste to be kind.” Or as Ellen Degeneres would say "Be kind to one another."

As Boston, Massachusetts, it's surrounding area, and people around the world mourn and start the road to recovery...I challenge each of you (and myself) to go out of your way to help someone in need. You may not be able to help someone directly affected by the tragedy there, but you can help someone in your area. The tragedy in West, Texas is also just beginning to unfold. The devastation and heartbreak will be overwhelming. Again, I urge each of you (and myself) to go out of your way to help someone in need. Lets remind people that human beings are good. Let's remind the world that people care. Let's remind the world that love will always overcome despair and hardship.

In the words of Rumi "You have within you more love than you could ever understand." Lets make it our goal to share love and try to find out just how much is there.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Naked Time...

Naked Butts,
You two think it is hilarious to be naked. Today, you guys were showing off your naked butts before baths and giggling the entire time.
Silly naked dudes.
I love you guys.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

If We Could All Act Like Babies...

The bright, desert morning sunlight was blocked out by the darkened lens of my white sunglasses. My reflection appeared in the windows of the large office building as I strolled by. My crisp gray suit sat neatly over my light blue shirt. I turned towards the window, gave myself a look and adjusted my striped tie. It was quite the outfit. Admiring myself, I stuck my left thumb in my mouth and with my right hand, I opened the door to the office. I stumbled to my desk with a couple of close calls, but I made it.
It was going to be another long day. As I sat in my chair, I pulled out my baggy of puffs and spread them across my desktop. With my thumb still in my mouth, I began to read through my "To Do" list. The list included a meeting at 10:00 a.m. with members of the executive team, a conference call with developers at 11:00 a.m., and a lot of busy work filling up the rest of my day. My boss came by my desk and dropped off a bulging folder at my desk. As he did, my lip quivered. My eyes filled with tears and I sucked my thumb a little harder. The tears continued to consume my eyes. I pulled my thumb out of my mouth and both of my hands clenched to fists. My face turned beet red as I held my breath. The alligator tears began streaming down my face. My lungs began to burn. My lips began to turn blue. I shook my fists as an ear piercing shriek escaped my throat. A puzzled look formed on the face of my boss. As I continued to scream, my boss just turned and walked away.
My throat was aching. My nose was running and I was still crying. I began trying to calm myself. I started making sounds...babbling and such. I blew air past my lips and they flapped. I continued this process and felt my self calming down. I brought my thumb back to mouth. Snot was still running from my nose, but the tears were subsiding. I rubbed my red eyes. I was going to need a nap before too long, but I wasn't going to go down happily.
As I grabbed a puff, I noticed that my 10:00 a.m. meeting was quickly approaching. As I grabbed my note pad and placed my pen in my mouth, I began my trek to the conference room upstairs. On the middle of the stairs, I saw a small metal object. I grabbed it and quickly placed it in my mouth. With a giggle and a babbling shout, I shook my arms wildly in the air. After, I continued on my way. I, once again, blew air past my lips making them flap. A co-worker opened the door and smiled at me. I giggled. As I passed her, I turned and accidentally burped in her face. I suddenly felt better. With a smile, I kept on walking. Right before I reached the conference room, I reached down to pick up a small piece of paper. It too found it's way to my mouth. As it joined the small metal object I found previously, I shook my arms with excitement. I rubbed my eyes, entered the conference room and took my seat.
As the executive team sat around the tab, I looked at each of them. I expected one of them to bark or make a sound like an ape or make sounds like gunshots as they pointed at me...but none of those things happened. I began to get antsy. I let out a small warning cry and shot the VP an irritated look as my lip quivered. My belly rumbled and I let out another whimper. They looked at me, and the executive assistant left the room. As I fought to compose myself, I blew air through my lips making them flap. A high pitched, sad screech escaped my lungs followed by a "ma ma ma". It was soon followed by a "da da da". Then, it was soon followed by a "ba ba ba". The executive assistant returned as my face began to turn red. My fists clenched and the tears were back. The executive assistant slide a Snickers bar towards me. As the VP unwrapped it for me, I began to scream. The Snickers was shoved in my mouth as I took a gasp. Life was good again!
As the meeting started, I stuck my hand in my mouth and began gnawing on it. Drool dripped down my chin and accumulated on the desk in front of me. As the voices shared their ideas, I looked out the window. A funny look formed on my face. A grunt escaped from my mouth. My nose scrunched upwards and my face reddened. I grunted again. This process happened over and over again. As the VP looked over at me, I smiled as I finished grunting. A stench filled the room, but I was satisfied. I babbled loudly, flailed my arms and shook my head while snot and drool ran down my face. My hand found it's way to my mouth again. I rubbed my face, stood up, stumbled a few steps and dropped to the ground where I once stood. I let out a little whimper, grapped my teddy, closed my eyes and was soon fast asleep.
Oh...if only all adults could act like babies...instead of just some.

Friday, April 12, 2013

10 Months and Counting...

Dear Boston & Braxton,
Ten months ago, I scooped up two little midgets in my exhausted and shaking arms. As I looked at each of you, I was in awe of the two little, amazing gifts that God had just entrusted to me. I thought about the word "Father" and how much weight that sacred word carries. In that moment, I was scared to death. Tears of joy mixed with those of anticipation, fear, excitement, anxiety and inadequacy flowed. The enormous weight of the situation was hitting me like a ton of bricks. I was extremely happy but also so very scared. Suddenly, I was responsible for the lives of two angels from above. And, while I had read books, done research, talked with family and friends and tried to prepare for this moment...there isn't really anything that can prepare a person for the journey of being a new parent. One baby would have been enough but was I going to handle two?
However, as I looked at each of you, an overwhelming love overcame me. A sense of peace and joy settled my nerves. The journey to parenthood was finished but the journey of parenthood was just beginning. In those precious moments, I knew it was simultaneously going to be the most fulfilling and the most overwhelmingly difficult task in my life.
As I silently prayed for comfort, understanding and wisdom, I pondered God's willingness to provide me with not one but two of his children. In my prayers I had only ever asked for one. Did I deserve two? And, if I didn't, why were you two given to me? If I did, what had I done to deserve you two? In my heart, I felt inadequate to have been blessed with two amazing spirits. I pondered God's all consuming love, that immeasurable love that I was so undeserving of. Regardless, I was so incredibly grateful for the two children of God that I now called my sons.
Over these past ten months, the feelings of complete joy and unconditional love have always outweighed the feeling of overwhelming inadequacy. I have watched as you boys have grown, and through you, I have grown. I have reached places that I didn't think were possible, places I would have never reached without each of you. The journey of unlocking an improved, more well-rounded, more complete, and better me would not have started without my little family. Between mommy and my boys, I have a renewed vigor to become a person that each of you can be proud of. I am so grateful to each of you for that. I am indebted to each of you for instilling that desire in me.
Over the past ten months, you guys have brought so much joy to our lives and the lives of others. Your infectious smiles regularly uplift the spirits of family, friends and random strangers. There is not a day that goes by where you don't make some one's day better. Remember to always practice that. Smile at others. Share your happiness. Share your love. Share of yourself.
Today, at 10 months and counting, we share your infectious smiles. We share the unconditional love that resides inside each of you. Today, like every day, you boys inspire me and all those you come in contact with.
I love you both so very much.

justindalebarrow's  album on Photobucket

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Wipe Right...

Throughout history, there have been many historic debates.
Dog or Cat? ABC or NBC? Batman or Superman? Ford or Chevy? Seinfeld or Friends? Nike or Reebok? Playstation or XBox? 2Pac or Biggie? Coke or Pepsi? Red Sox or Yankees? MJ or Magic? Star Trek or Star Wars?
These debates have raged on for years. I have always found myself on various sides of these issues...usually, if not always, the right side...but that doesn't really matter. But, it is true. Just ask me, and I will tell that I am right.
Dog. NBC. Batman. Ford. Friends. Nike. XBox. 2Pac. Pepsi. Red Sox. MJ. Star Wars.
Enough said.
But, even with all these debates, one debate tops them all. It surpasses all the discussion of pets, television choices, superheroes, brands, teams, players, etc. I have debated it at home, at the gym, at work, across bathroom stalls and everywhere else whether appropriate or not. So, what is this unsettled debate that could rock the nation?
Toilet Paper or Baby Wipes?
That's right. That is what I got. The most important debate revolves around what is used to wipe one's ass. That's it. What type of ass wipe do you use?
For me, I have always shouted from the roof tops for the baby wipe side. That's right...I use baby wipes. Some people laugh at that idea. Some people mock me for it. And, the asses of those people aren't as clean as who is the joke really on?
If you get poop on your hand, which we have all done at one time or another, do you merely wipe that poop off with paper? Do you just use a couple squares of two-ply, call it good and wait for you next shower? I don't think so Tim. If your name is Tim, that wasn't directed at you...unless you don't use baby wipes. Think about it...really think about it.
As I have been changing diapers for the crapping machines that currently are in my care, I have come to the realization, more than ever, that basic toilet paper just doesn't cut it. Baby wipes are a must.
Now, I bet that by this point in time, you are wondering why you are wasting your time reading this garbage. And, I really don't have an answer for you. Maybe, just maybe, it is because you're bored. Maybe, just maybe, it is because you feel sorry for me. But, for whatever reason, you are here. You are thinking about toilet paper and baby wipes and poop. And, for that, you are welcome.
Enjoy your night, and remember to wipe right.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Best Buddies...

Brothers share an incredible bond. The bond between twin brothers, however, is exponential stronger. And, throughout the years, if nurtured, that bond will grow to unimaginable heights. The past ten months, I have deeply enjoyed the privilege of watching your bond in action. It is a bond that I am in awe of. It is truly inspiring. It brings tears to my eyes. It is incredible example of love.
Since the time that Mommy and I learned that one baby would actually be two babies, I have talked, thought and studied about the incredible connection between identical twins. The research and stories have brought a smile to my face and tears to my eyes. It is truly remarkable. I have long talked and wrote about the incredible bond your spirits must have had in Heaven, for there was a reason why our Heavenly Father knew he must send the two of you together. I cannot even imagine the closeness you two shared and continue to share. You are two pieces of a whole. And, it has been that way since the very beginning.
In the womb, you guys would play together. We got to see an ultrasound where you guys were playing with the lining between you two. You would push it back and forth. It was a marvelous sight. Mommy would often say it felt like a fight for the UFFC was happening in her belly...The Ultimate Fetus Fighting Championships.
From the very beginning, we knew that you two would be best buddies. And, you proved that to be a fact in the delivery room. I know that I have told this story before, but I never feel like it can be shared enough. You guys were pulled from mommy about a minute apart. Braxton, as the nurses were cleaning you up, you began whaling at the top of your lungs. Boston, you did the same. But, when the nurses brought you together for a photo op, the screams stopped when you (Brax) grabbed Boston's hand. It is a moment that I will never forget. As you guys held hands, the room was in awe.
The screams would resume as soon as you guys were separated again. But, once you were placed in the same crib, peace was restored. The nurse were in awe of this entire scene and I was in tears.
In the hospital, you guys would nap for hours together. As long as you were near each other, you were happy. You guys found comfort in one another. In an instant, one could already see the connection you two had. And, in the past ten months that connection has grown immensely.

Sometimes, I am jealous. And, I try to join the napping parties. While there is not enough room in the crib, you guys often let me join on the side.
It truly warmed my heart to see the peace and comfort that you found in one another. I wondered if it would be short lived, but I hoped not as it was truly a incredible thing to watch. Observing the level of love you two have for one another has inspired me so much...more than I ever thought would be possible. So, from the time we brought you guys home, we helped to develop that bond. We worked to nurture it.
When we first got home, you guys would sleep in the bassinet. However, you would be on the opposite sides of the mesh liner. And, just like in the womb, you two wanted to get as close as possible. This picture really doesn't do the feat justice. Often times, you guys would be laying face to face with the mesh lining in between. 
And, in the end, you guys would end up sleeping on the same side...holding hands. And, it was and is always a heart warming sight to behold.
On occasion, we have even caught one of you sucking on the other one's finger. But, sometimes, the pacifier gets in the way.
And, still, on other would be joined by another friend...
When you guys are sleeping is not the only time that you guys enjoy each other's company. You guys love to snuggle, play, laugh, read and hang out together. It is a bond that I cannot describe.
As you guys have grown so has your bond. Your connection is incredible. You guys know when the other is sad. I can see it in your eyes the concern and care you already have for each other. I cannot wait to watch that bond grow. I love helping nurture that bond and will continue on that journey for as long as you guys will let me.
The bond that you share is so very important. It is so important to develop and nurture it. It is something that you will never regret. Like I have mentioned so often, family is the most important thing in life. Keep it close. Continue to develop your amazing relationship and continue to be the best of friends. Two heavenly spirits forever connected by God.
 I love you guys so very much!


Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Story Time...

Boston & Braxton,
On a glorious day in October...October 14, 2012 to be exact...we learned that a baby (little did we would actually be two) would be joining and completing our little family. Since that wonderful day, we have had story time on a nightly basis. That night, we opened a Dr. Seuss classic and read it aloud. Often times, I am sure we looked as silly as we felt as I read to mommy's growing belly. But, part of being a parent is being silly. And, with your mom and I, you won't ever have to worry about not having silly, embarrassing, and loving parents. Story time became a nightly ritual. We would lay in bed and read whatever we could get our hands on. We read kid's books to you. We read Sports Illustrated to you. We read whatever we could find.

When we found out that Mommy was carrying two babies, we began reading twice as much. For nine months, we shared stories and dreamed of the day that we would hold each of you in our arms and share yet another story. On June 12th, we were able to share a story in the hospital that forever changed our lives.

The past ten months we have shared so many stories from "Go Dog Go" to "Llama Llama Red Pajama" to "I Love You Stinky Face" and everything in between. And, I love every minute of it. My favorite thing to do after a long day of work is to read stories to you guys. A nightly bed time story is a must. It is must much more for me than you guys. I need the nightly story time. It makes my day better and it is a special time for our family.

Tonight, we pulled up some chairs and had some special story time. You guys love your chairs. You guys love to listen intently and look at the pictures.

But, once we get going, you both tend to lounge back and just enjoy the story. I really cherish these moments. These pictures are some of my favorites.

And, eventually, the chairs disappear. You guys will end up on my lap or standing up. There is always a lot of movement, but you guys always listen excitedly.

And, often times, you guys will help me read the story which is always needed.
I am looking forward to many more of these moments. You two have changed my life and I am so thankful for each of you.
I love you.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Michael Jordan Son...

This past month, we have been watching a lot of basketball together. We have been enjoying March Madness and the race for the NBA playoffs. As you know, your old man loves Michael Jordan so you showed him your best impression of the G.O.A.T. It is truly spot on.
I can't wait until we can play together ball together too! In time, I am sure you will school me too. But, I wouldn't have it any other way.
I love you!

Sunday, April 07, 2013

A Cool Momma's Boy...

You are a momma's boy. You love your momma!
But, sometimes, when you are at the park and your momma wants to give you a can be embarassing. soon as you put on your Stunna shades, you make it cool to be a momma's boy.
I love you!