This past weekend was a good and productive one.  I had a good friend come over and school me on a house repair I was new to.  There is a chimney that I need to knock down at the rear of my house. It isn’t structural, and I thought it was causing a wall to buckle. We started by tearing into the wall on the inside of the house. It yielded a lot of damage I wasn’t ready for.  There was evidence of termites and water leaking from the top of the chimney (got to love a house from the 40’s!). None of the studs were holding up any weight, they had been destroyed. Once we got rid of all the plaster and termite poop, you could see where the water had been leaking in for who knows how long.

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How this wall was still up, I’ll never know.

We reinforced the wall with some brand-new studs and I can now rip down the chimney and fix the outside wall.  The wife and I also installed a new throne (toilet) upstairs. It’s a Koehler, no big deal.

I have always made the effort to post my ramblings on Fridays. With how my schedule has been of late, I am going to start posting on Tuesday’s.  It is difficult during the week to sit down and compile my thoughts into something you can read and (hopefully) be entertained by. This one is about the day a little man named “Hot Rod” Lincoln came into my life.  My wife swears he is the spitting image of me (when he cries he looks like her).  Watching him grow over the past year has been awesome.  He is definitely a daddy’s boy (so says my wife) and always touches the Texas A&M sign at the bottom of the stairs when I bring him down in the morning (future Aggie?). I am sitting here putting the final touches on this drinking some George Dickel and ginger ale.

 

It was a gloomy Sunday morning on May 22nd.  Krissi and I had decided to take Kash to Comic Con and see the Batmobile from the old Adam West TV show. She is a yuuuge (see what I did there?) fan of Batman, so we figured it would be a neat surprise.  During the ride there, Krissi began to have contractions. “We might be having this baby today, but we are going to Comic Con first so our girl can see the Batmobile” she told me. Kash was dressed to the teeth as Batman. Cape, mask, shirt and some sweet pink chucks. She was ready.  When we arrived, the crowd was fairly small, which made it easy to get around.  We made a b-line towards the Batmobile and took some sweet pictures with her at the wheel. Kash’s face was filled with excitement and awe.  We cruised around for about an hour. Afterword’s, we checked out what Comic Con was, as both Krissi and I had never been before.  We picked up a couple trinkets for Kash and bounced, Krissi had a work meeting later that day to create new drinks.  On the way there, she reiterated to me, “Babe, this baby is coming out today.” It still hadn’t hit me that my son was going to pop out that day.  We hung out at the cantina (Krissi’s work) while she was creating new drinks for the upcoming summer season. Kash began to start her “I’m tired, but not tired” attitude, so we knew it was time to beat feet. As we left, Krissi called her mom and asked her to pick up Kash. We were going to the hospital. It was around 530 (1730 for you military types) when Maw-maw arrived to pick up our girl. Krissi and I then loaded up and headed to Maryview. Now, this hospital has a bad rap with a nickname Murderview, but the maternity ward it awesome and the staff was amazing. It looked newer than the rest of the hospital and the staff was great. It’s where Krissi and Kash were born, and it would now be Lincoln’s place of birth.  We checked in and made our way to a delivery room. Our first nurse was thankful we didn’t bring any family/baby-mama drama with us. She had been dealing with it all day from other patients. Krissi’s contractions had been ramping up all day and were becoming more frequent. We got settled in and the nurse came in to check her out. 2cm dilated. Nothing crazy, but the nurse wanted to check in another hour. An hour later, she was 3 cm dilated. So, we were able to stay for another hour.  At around 8 pm, Krissi was 6 cm. Hot Rod was on his way out.

The staff began to make preps to deliver Hot Rod.  The anesthesiologist asked me to leave the room when it came time for the epidural (I had been warned about this, thought it was silly).  It was about 10 pm, and we hadn’t yet hit critical mass. Maw-maw came up there to be with us after Kash had gone to sleep. It was then just a waiting game. Around 1130 pm, things began to happen.  The doctor made her way in, shit was getting real.  I was tasked with holding a leg while Krissi pushed. It still hadn’t hit me that my son was on his way.  I was preparing myself for a rush of emotions and maybe a little freak out when it came time, but the whole process seemed normal and didn’t faze me in the way I expected it to. I just did what the doc told me to and I was good to go. At 1203 AM on May 23rd, 2016, Lincoln Theodore Clemens was born.

There are not a lot of things that I get emotional about, but the birth of a child (I found out) is one of them.  After, the nurse cleaned him up and weighed him, she handed him to me. He came in at 8lbs and 20in (I think).  He was a little fella then, as opposed to today where he weighs 5lbs less than his 4-year-old sister. Once my wife was done with the nurses and doc, I gave him to her to hold.  Watching her for the first time with our son is something that I will never forget.  It was an amazing visual of love. (Here I am about to get all sappy, ha-ha). I stepped out of the room to call my folks.  They knew we were at the hospital and I imagine they were anxiously awaiting our phone call.  My mom picked up the phone, and I began to ball my eyes out. “Mom, you are a grandmother, again,“ I told her.  A quick conversation followed, I composed myself, and went back into the room with my wife and mother-in-law.  My sister came up for a little bit to see him about an hour later, once everything had died down. After they made sure the wife and son were good to go, they moved us to another room where my wife would be for the next couple days.

The next day, we had some family and friends visit.  It was nice to see them, broke up the monotony of being cooped up in a small hospital room.  On the 24th, we were able to check out.  Maw-maw, who had been watching Kash the past couple days, brought her up so we could go home as a family. Usually after your 2nd child they require the mother to stay for 48 hours. We were able to leave a tad early, which was nice.  That afternoon, Mom, Kash, Hot Rod, and I made our way downstairs and loaded up in the pick-em-up truck (as Kash calls it). We waived goodbye as we drove off and headed home.

The shift from one to two kids wasn’t easy, but we wouldn’t trade it for anything.  As Lincoln grows, he will more than likely be a terror (prerequisite: boy). He is a huge flirt and already giving us a run for our money.  He figured out how to climb up the stairs (while I was spotting him), and just wants to do that all the time now. It’s great for wearing him out.  He finally started sleeping through the night without screaming bloody murder. It’s been pleasant to hearing nothing but the weather outside lately. I look forward to him growing and learning, eager to teach him skills and watch him develop a personality. It’s going to be awesome.

 

Do work, be rad

Ben

 

 

I felt the need to give some background on his nickname Hot Rod. It is purely coincidence that there is a hilarious movie with the same name (which I enjoy watching after the kids are asleep). When it came to naming our son, I had suggested we name him after my father, Theodore. While Krissi liked the name, she wasn’t too thrilled about having him called Ted (my dad’s nickname) or Teddy (what my grandma called him). She liked Theo, but wasn’t 100%.  She came to me a couple weeks later and asked if I liked the name Lincoln Theodore.  It had a nice ring to it and sounded strong. My middle name is my grandfather’s name, so there is a bit of tradition in it as well. Shortly after, we learned about the song Hot Rod Lincoln by Commander Cody. It fits hit perfectly and has been his nickname since before he was born, and he has lived up to it. I can only imagine how he will pay it off in the future.