Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Because I Won't Lose Them Again!

 This past weekend, we lost yet another computer! That's about 4 untimely computer deaths, which of course equals a good deal of loss. Yes, I know: Back things up! Truth is, you get lulled into a false sense of security, thinking, "I've got time. I'll do that this weekend." Of course, as with other very important things in life...hint hint...they often get put off until it is too late! Thankfully, much of what has been lost can be rebuilt and some can be restored from having shared on Facebook. The thought of another loss though has put me in a mood to make sure that some of these pictures never get lost again. So, here I am, back at the one stable place we've had over the last several years. Good ol' faithful!

These are some of my favorites. This will be the first of such posts, but not likely the last.

Me and my sister Woods just before leaving to Spain. She passed away just 3 years ago.

Grandma Irene

On the Mediterranean Sea

This might be the coat from The Christmas Story!

Maybe a glimpse into the future? Note the fake tatoo on the arm...I really hope that part is not part of the future!

He used to say, "I play drums and cymbals!"

In Cadiz, near the ruins of Tarshish.

Land sharks are always a danger!

Yep, Pirates need sunglasses like this!

Sunday, August 07, 2011

6 Months Later...

Hello All,

Here is what we have been doing the last 6 months of our lives! We took all of the Ana footage and put it into a 6 minute montage. Think of this as a "1 Minute A Month Montage!" Maybe, you might even take it in 2 minute intervals, that way it can be a "Trilogy!" Then you might just watch the entire thing in one setting because it's annoying having to wait for parts 2 & 3, unless you don't like it and then you can just watch the first part and not have to spend your hard earned money on the final installments. But then again, this is totally free, so don't look a gift horse in the mouth, which I imagine would be gross, which is why you won't find a "Gift Horse" in this little movie, which is all the more incentive to watch it!

Anyway, however you end up viewing this, if at all, thanks for checking it out!


Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Welcome Ana Grace Sanchez

And here she is...Ana Grace Sanchez! By the numbers, she is baby #4, girl #3. She was born at 12:04PM, January 31st at Redlands Community Hospital. At birth, she weighed in 7Ilbs, 13.5 oz and was measured at 20 inches long, making her our biggest baby to date. Thankfully, at this time, she seems to be quite a sleeper, though her need to feed keeps her coming back for more every 2 hours.

This being our 4th baby, much was different this time around. For example, while we delivered at the same hospital (by "we," I mean Lela!), the wing that we delivered in is brand new. Both Lela's Dad and Lela were also born there, so the history runs deep. The new ward, as far as baby wards go, is pretty nice.

The other difference is wifi access. Years ago, we actually had to call people...on the phone...which was connected to a cord coming out of the wall! And all the kids say, "ooohhh!" This time, I was able to get things out on Facebook and had some instantaneous reporting going on. I did want to put in a status that said "PUSH!" but I felt that might have strained at the boundaries of good taste!

Another difference was in the way that the hospital staff allowed the baby to remain with Lela the entire time. Years ago, they let you have a few "skin-to-skin" moments and then promptly ushered the baby away for several hours to perform various tests upon them. This time, they just let Ana stay with Mom who was happy to have the time.

One final difference was that this birth was induced. Having the opportunity to plan a birth was a very different phenomena for us. We almost didn't know what to do with ourselves. Usually, Lela and I hit Olive Garden, she starts contracting and by the middle of the night, she wakes me out of a dead sleep and tells me, "It's time." This time, we were given a date and then just nervously waited for it to take place. Personally, I don't miss the old way...though, I am always good for some Olive Garden! I'm getting hungry...I digress!

This last point leads me to tell you that the more things change, the more they stay the same! All the other births began to happen in the middle of the night. It turns out that when you are induced, you don't get to choose the time for inducement. In fact, they start scheduling inducement at 1AM. Our slot was supposed to be 4AM, but we needed to call at 3AM to find out if there was an available bed. It turns out that when Lela did call at 3AM, that they told her that we were not scheduled to come in until 7AM, so we were to call back at 6AM! Of course, both of us were already up...so inducement or natural, it's the middle of the night for us Sanchezes!

Also returning to their previous roles were the Moms, who have been at every birth. It is an amazing blessing to have both Moms within a few minutes of the hospital. Thankfully, Dad Finfrock was able to take the kids during the birth so that Mom could be there. As always, we thank our parents for their monumental support and love.

And then, there was the actual birth. I am thankful to report that I have never been pregnant. I'm amazed at my wife, who faced her most difficult pregnancy with her usual grace. There were a few times when she reported to the nursing staff that her deliveries were usually fast. Not knowing her, these statements were taken a little lightly. At one point the Doctor actually said, "Well, sometimes it's different with inducements" a small hint of Doctoral condescension in her voice. Lela confidently knowing what none of us could know.

When they broke her water, the birth took only a 30 minutes to move her from a 5 to a 9 and Lela said, "She's moving." I admit: I wouldn't ever want to know what that meant! What it meant was that this baby was coming and the staff went into action. It was not very long before the head started to show and little Ana came out, virtually purple from head to toe. It's a miracle that they come out that way, but then become little people, who eventually become big people...but they start so small and vulnerable. It's truly phenomenal to consider that God allows such weakness and then trusts them to the hands of two very exhausted parents!

A few hours passed and the original three came by to visit their new sister. The girls were ecstatic, showing their emotions freely. Caleb was a bit more apprehensive, but excited nonetheless. Of all the wonderful things about this birth, I think that watching them experience and share her life will be one of the best things. Their eyes of love, protection and concern tell the whole story of the type of family that Ana can expect. Earlier today, Renae was outlining all the ways that they were going to help, none of which is going to happen, but it's the thought that counts!

All things being what they are, different or similar, the result is the same: We're so very thankful to the Lord who has entrusted us with this life. We pray that it will be a life that pleases Him all of her days!

Friday, September 03, 2010

Baby News: We...Are...Having...A...

Hello All,

Don't worry: Those are not my tattoos...or my arms for that matter!

For those of you who are not in the know, my wife is pregnant with our fourth child. This child, from it's conception, has been a child that has had the greatest expectations. For one, this baby is it, our final offering to global overpopulation. But more importantly, this baby has the weight of balancing the gender power struggle that exists currently in this family. When this baby was conceived, it would either balance the power and Hercules would emerge or crush the scales in favor of the women.

You probably think that this does not matter much. It does matter incredibly! Let me tell you how. For every movie Caleb picks, there are two chick flicks he must endure. For every army man, there are two dolls. For every vote on what to play, there are two votes for girl games. He can't win.

Oh, but it gets worse. These girls will be teens...at the same time...in the same house...where I LIVE!! Are you getting this!? How much drama can Caleb and I take!? So very early on, when it was learned that a baby was coming, the prayers were not so subtle from the male contingency: WE WANT REINFORCEMENTS! Forget the PC "All-We-Want-Is-A-Healthy-Baby" propaganda. I have been "Boy Only" since day 1.

Let it be 3 on 3. Equal opportunity. Blessing for everyone!

Yesterday, we were able to get our sonogram. Let me first say that Beaver Medical Group has sonogrammed all of our children and has been able with great efficiency to determine the sex of each baby. Let me also let you know that with each baby I have been wrong about the sex. When I called "boy," we got a girl. When I called "girl," it was Caleb. Goosegg. 0 for 3! You might think that this discourages me and you would be WRONG! "THIS JUST MEANS I'M DUE!" "I've got to be right this time!"

As has become our sonogram pattern, both Grandmas were present, as well as Elizabeth. Yeah, I see the feminine moral support. We waited for the tech to come out and let us know that we could come back. I stroked my lucky rabbits foot, did not walk on any of the lines on the carpet and prayed, "Let it be male....PLEASE!"

The moment of truth came when the technician came out. I checked his eyes for any sign of hope, any give, but he was stone faced. Clearly, he relishes his job, hiding the secrets as long as he can. He brought us back, no clue as to what he had discovered with his little "secret machine." That's good dude. Let's not gloat.

He then proceeded to show off his sonogrammatic prowess by giving us a tour of the body! Inside I was screaming: WHO CARES ABOUT THE EYES!?!!? WHY DO I WANT TO SEE THE BABY'S NASAL CAVITY!?!?! Clearly, this man needs people to recognize his skills as a sonogram technician! (And yes, just in case you are wondering, the baby has 2 of everything, except where it should have 5 of everything, at which point, that's all there as well!) The ability to make out where the elbow is while in utero, is a fine point on the resume! But what I want to know Sonogram Man is, will we be having an IRON MAN birthday party or another Princess party come January?

Finally, he takes us to the main event, after an amazingly long under card. "Two legs." Finally. "And right there in between the legs..." Drum roll....


I asked him to check again from another angle. Nothing. "How many years have you been doing this!?"


I actually planned to put a picture of the sonogram here, but thought better of it...needless to say:

I am 0 for 4!

Lela and the female contingent scream out in gloating glee, as their population is helped by yet another little one of them! Me? I walked out and plotted my strategy for the bunker that I will make out of the garage!

Little Ana, prayerfully, will join us January 30th. We are working on a middle name right now, and are praying about what it might be, though Renae gave us a great suggestion at the dinner table the other night. Aside for all the jokes, we are grateful for this little one and can't wait for her to come and be part of our very girly family!

Blessings...To Our Friends,
Frank Sanchez