Tuesday, June 19, 2012

It's Been a Month Already?!?!

Wow!  I can't believe it's already been a month.  And yet, this has been a long 30 days (tomorrow is the actual 30 day mark!).  We're so glad that Joseph joined our family!  Words can't express the joy and love I feel when I look at him.

He quickly learned Sam and my voices and turns his head to find us when we speak.  He has a strong neck (he's pretty much been lifting his head since birth), and has almost rolled from his back to stomach on multiple occasions (just yesterday, Sam went into the bedroom to check on him and asked me if I had laid him down on his side because that's how he was sleeping. {I really wish he would wait on this milestone!}).  Although he isn't "cooing," he is making noises that aren't crying :).  Joseph no longer hates baths, but I wouldn't say he loves them either.  So far, he has a few nicknames including Joe, Lil Joe, Broseph, and Trey (because he's the third "Joe"), but I still prefer to call him Joseph. 

Joseph - 1 Month

This first month has surfaced some emotions I wasn't expecting.  I think the toughest time was when I realized that if Aubrey were living, Joseph wouldn't be in our lives.  We've always wanted to adopt (we thought it would be great to have two biological then two adopted), but it hit me that Aubrey would just now be turning two and, if she were here, we would be trying for baby number two, not knowing that adoption was our next step. It's hard to wish for one child over the other; thankfully, we don't have to choose between the two because God made that choice for us.  For now, we will be content raising Joseph knowing that our family will be whole again someday.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Proof Joseph Was Destined to be a Cowboy

I like to call this his "go pokes" stretch.  He's been doing it since birth, it's just hard to catch on film.  Way to go, son!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Joseph's Newborn Pictures

Because I have had many people ask about them, here are a few of not all of Joseph's newborn pictures (he's just so cute and Heidi did such and amazing job that I have a hard time narrowing it down).  We ended up doing both a newborn session and a family session.  The result was a lot of great, frame worthy pictures.


And last, but not least (because I like to keep it real).

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Good Ole Fashion Shrimp Boil

This post should have been written a while ago (about four weeks, to be exact), but we've been a little busy around the Parks' house.  Oh well, here it goes.

For a while now, Sam has been wanting to host a shrimp boil.  We finally decided to go for it, ordered a hundred pounds of shrimp, and invited a bunch of friends over.  To all my Cajun friends, please ignore the Okies as we try to recreate one of your traditions.

Shrimp ~ check

Seasonings ~ check

Beverages ~ check

Friends ~ check (I don't have a picture of everyone as people were coming and going all day)

Many of our friends had never been to an event like this and were a little surprised when they learned that we would be dumping the food on the table we had set up in the yard. 

Luckily, they were able to overcome the "unusual" dining conditions and enjoy.

After dinner, the guys moved inside to watch a UFC fight.

While the women folk stayed outside for pony rides,

fun with the water hose,

and begging dogs.

In all, we only ate 20 pounds!  You read that right, we only ate 20 of the 100 pounds of shrimp we ordered.  Luckily, we had a back up plan to help us get rid of a little more and we enjoy eating shrimp.

So, what do you do when your friends don't eat enough shrimp?  Call in the professionals... football players that is!  The guys on either side of Sam are signed to play with the Washington Redskins this fall and happened to come home the Sunday after the boil on a training camp break.  We fired everything up and cooked another 20 pounds.  Can you believe the six of us ate pretty much as much as everyone on Saturday combined!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Joseph's Homecoming

Joseph was released from the hospital on Sunday, May 20th.  Since we were unable to schedule the initial court date on that day (for obvious reasons), we stayed the night at my dad's house and went to court on Monday morning.  As soon as our court appearance was over, we packed up and headed to Stillwater.  After a quick stop to visit my mom in Oklahoma City (she broke her leg on Sunday...), we were finally home.  As we were driving home, Heidi (neighbor, good friend, dog sitter extraordinaire) called and asked if we would like for her to come down and take pictures of our arrival home.  Of course, we said yes.  When we finally pulled up to our house, we found many of our neighbors and friends in our front yard along with our dogs and balloons.  Wow, talk about a homecoming!

Sam and Joseph were excited to finally be headed home!

How pretty is Miss Bella with her big, blue bow?!

Rufus got in on the bow action too!  I thought the bows were such a sweet touch.

Heidi put balloons and a stat sign in our front yard.  The pink balloon is for big sis :)

My co-workers put balloons and a welcome sign in our house.  I guess I need to do a better job hiding the extra key ;)

The cherry on top was our decorated mantle.  Heidi knows that I like to decorate it for various holidays, so she decorated it for Joseph's arrival.  The gas pump and truck will be making their way to his room when we get it finished (we're working on it... slowly, but surely).