Nella Meets Cora

One of the best parts about having a new daughter is that we now have a big sister and a little sister.  Granted, I don’t know what it’s like to be a sister of any kind but I do love my siblings.  I know each of my brothers and sister have played a role in who I am today (mostly in a positive way) and I pray that Cora and Nella are just as close if not closer.  Kate has very similar feelings to me so we were very excited to see them meet for the first time.

I want to roooock her

I want to roooock her

When we went to the hospital on early Wednesday morning we thought the first time the two sisters would meet each other would be 3-4 days after the delivery because there was a ban at the hospital for anyone under 18 who was not a patient.  Obviously we understand why it’s done (there’s a lot of flu going around in Charlotte right now) but that doesn’t mean we weren’t a little bummed by it.  Then, shortly after Cora was born we heard from a nurse that the ban might be lifted.  We didn’t want to get our hopes up but we did let GG and KT know there was a possibility Nella would be able to come to the hospital on Thursday (Feb 5th).  Later in the evening the official word came through and we got really excited that Nella would be able to meet Cora the next day.

Around the same time we heard about the ban being lifted, Cora had to put under the Bilirubin lights.  She had some high levels and was at risks for spikes so the doctors recommended we start getting treatment early (really before it became a big issue) because of the risk involved.  In order to make sure we could get home in time we kept Cora under the lights at all times, unless she was being fed.  This meant Nella would be able to meet her but would not be able to “rock her” immediately.  That would have to wait until we get home but didn’t dampen our excitement one bit.

The first time she saw her little sister.

The first time she saw her little sister.

Then it came.  Thursday morning we got a call from GG, KT and Nella because they were in the building and getting ready to come up.  My mom and dad (Grammy Gram and Pop-Pop) were visiting as well so it would be a grand old time.  We heard a knock at the door and told Nella to come in.  She came around the corner and in the sweetest half whisper said “Cora?” as she looked around the room wide-eyed.  It’s hard to describe it but if you know Nella she runs full throttle when she is awake.  Kate and I hadn’t seen her be excited in this manner before and it was a joy to watch.  After the first moments Nella gathered herself and went into full blown excitement.  She pretty much repeated:

  •  “Cora came out!!!”
  • “She’s not in Mommy’s belly!!!”

After a little bit of visitation time Nella had to head home to get her nap in and she was not happy about that.  She asked more than few times to take Cora home and threw a pretty good sob story as she left because mommy and Cora couldn’t go home.  I guess she learned about delayed gratification but it was a little heart breaking to see.

"Reading" her book to Cora.

“Reading” her book to Cora.

Luckily, when we were sent home the next day (Friday the 6th) she was just as excited to see Cora again.  She pretty much overdosed on excitement and was frantically trying to give her everything Cora “needed” all at once (blanket, hugs, pacis, rocking, etc).  It was pretty endearing and also a little crazy as we ensured Nella didn’t literally crush Cora with love.  Since that day Nella has done a great job of being a big sister and wanting to help, there has been very little (if any) jealousy.

After all the build up for Nella it has been nice to see her truly excited about being a big sister and I think she is going to really enjoy that role.  I’m sure there will be fights and the typical disagreements that any two sisters have but I can only hope they realize how important a sibling relationship is as they grow up, I know I certainly do.

All 3 of my girls.

All 3 of my girls.

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Cora Marie Dyksterhouse

Not to provide a blog spoiler and stop you from reading to the end but…SHE’S HERE!!!!!  After a surprisingly uneventful 9 months here’s the greatly edited blow by blow of the last few days.

The Beginning

On Tuesday (February 3rd) Kate had her weekly doctor’s appointment to make sure everything looked good and we that didn’t need to head to the hospital for delivery.  Due to the appointments happening weekly (and usually with little new news)

Cora, meet your mommy.

Cora, meet your mommy.

Kate would go to these alone.  KT, Kate’s amazing aunt, would stay home with Nella and I would be at work, getting an update as Kate left the office.  The general feeling after the appointment is that we should prepare ourselves to have a C-section on the 13th (yep – that would be Friday the 13th….duh duh duh duuuuuuuuuuhhhh).  This was pretty expected by us so we went about life as usual with a Bachelor viewing party with full betting on the “winners” that evening.  Kate didn’t feel great all day but she was over 39 weeks pregnant… and we felt like that’s to be expected.  Well at 1am the unexpected happened….Kate woke me up saying her water just broke.  I jumped out of bet (literally, I sleep hard so when I’m woken up I have a tendency to freak out until I’m fully awake) and Kate called the doctor.

Commercial Break: At this point we also walked downstairs to hand KT the monitor for Nella.  KT is Kate’s aunt and unbelievably and selflessly offered to come up and stay with us during the last weeks of the pregnancy.  She drove up to Charlotte just before Martin Luther King Jr. day and was so helpful while we prepared for Cora.  KT – thank you so much for a taking almost a month of out of your life to help us out.  You made everything so much easier and made us much less anxious (especially since Nella couldn’t go to the hospital due to a children ban).

Back to the action.  The nurse on the phone told us to head to the hospital immediately so we threw our hospital bag in the car and took off.  We made it in pretty good time since the nurse kind of freaked us out.  I wasn’t driving like Cole Trickle, but I definitely didn’t pay attention to speed limits and\or traffic lights.  We got to the hospital safe and sound and checked into triage where we waited for the next steps.

Waiting

After triage they got us into a Labor and Delivery room pretty quickly since Kate’s water had already broken.  We got settled into the room and prepared ourselves for a long day.  Soon after we got into the room Kate really started having some painful contractions.  I started to setup shop (get things from the car, park the car in a non-expectant mother spot, etc) while the nurses took care of Kate.  The on-call doctor (who happened to be Kate’s main doctor – Dr. Naumann) checked to see how things were going and Kate was 3cm dilated.  At that point we started to get “comfortable” thinking it would be quite a bit longer.  Mainly, we started asking about pain meds so Kate could potentially get some sleep.  We were able to get on the epidural list and waited for the anesthesiologist to finish up with another expectant mother.  We thought we may have to try some other meds because the anesthesiologist got called to emergency but just as we were going through those options he knocked on the door ready to get everything hooked up.  The doctor did a fantastic job but just after he got the line in we had our one real scare for the morning.  Kate’s blood pressure dropped pretty quickly (which caused Cora’s heart rate to drop) and another nurse came flying in to adjust Kate’s position and put her on oxygen.  Once we got Kate in another position on the bed everything returned to normal and Kate was much more comfortable.  Soon after around 7am the nurse shifts changed and wouldn’t you know it…Heather (the same nurse that was with us when Nella was born) came walking through the door.

Hi Daddy.

Hi Daddy.

Commercial Break:  Heather had us numerous times when we were waiting on Nella so we were really happy to see her.  She goes to my brother’s church and first recognized us by our last name…I mean how many Dyksterhouse’s can there be?  She was actually not supposed to be working but had to call out sick the day before and switched shifts with another nurse.  Sometimes it’s hard to see why God does certain things, other times it’s clear as day.  Thankfully it was easy to see that He wanted us to be as comfortable as possible with our help since:

  • Dr. Naumann (who we trust 100% about everything to do with pregnancy) cleared her morning schedule to stay with us.
  • Heather wasn’t even supposed to be on the schedule for the day and not only was there, she was assigned to our room.

Back to the action.  Now that Kate was much more comfortable we started emailing and texting people to bring them up to speed.  Shortly after we caught up with Heather a little bit, Doctor Naumann came in and checked on Kate.  She had to repeat herself because she said Kate had dilated all the way to 9cm in only a few hours.  The waiting part was almost over, time to get our game faces on.

The Delivery

Once we got word Kate was 9cm, things really started to happen in our room.  I started getting things organized since it looked like we wouldn’t be in there nearly as long as expected and nurses started prepping everything for delivery.  Around 915 it was time to start.  We had no idea what to expect since Nella came as an unscheduled C-Section, but it was much calmer than what we built up in our minds.  For a little over three hours Kate would expend all her energy during the contractions.  In between each contraction we would talk with Heather to try and keep ourselves calm.  Being that this took three plus hours Heather now pretty much knows everything about Kate and I, including the fact that one of the pastors at her church married us in Charleston (small world!).  After hours of labor Dr Naumann noticed that although Kate was doing everything she could, it seemed like we would need some additional assistance to welcome Cora into this world.  There was no danger to Cora at this time but Kate was starting to get exhausted.

Commercial Break: I’ll use this time to say what every husband who has seen his wife go into labor knows…thank goodness men don’t get pregnant.  Seeing how hard it is just during delivery (nevermind the 9 months leading up to that and portpartum time frame) makes me very happy to be a dude.  It also really brings to light just how awesome Kate is.  She’s way out of my league and for some reason decided to spend her life with me, I hit the proverbial jackpot.

Back to the action.  After Dr. Naumann assured us that Cora was in no danger (and we wouldn’t need a C-Section) she asked us if we would rather keep going or try and use a vacuum to help.  After discussing the options we opted for some assistance and she explained Cora would be here within the hour.  About 30 minutes later we joyously welcomed Cora Marie Dyksterhouse into the world.

Welcome

She’s here and she’s healthy.  Man, those first few minutes you hear your child’s cry and see just how tiny he\she is….words cannot describe the joy and emotion that you feel.  Everything above was new to us because Nella came so early and went through an entirely different birth.  The one very awesome part of Cora’s delivery is that when she arrived we could hold her.  We could hold her as long as we wanted and with no one else in our room.  There was no worrying about wires or monitors…it was just Cora, mommy, and me.    God has blessed us with another daughter and at the time she seems so much different than Nella.  She’s sleeping pretty well, loves to eat and most importantly….is pooping all over the place.  We know there are numerous challenges in front of us in raising two daughters but for the moment we are living pretty blissfully.  We are so excited to start this next chapter of our lives and we know we have an army of friends and family behind us to help.

Cora

Well that was our day if you can sum it up in a few paragraphs.  Sorry it’s so long, it’s

Ssshhhh....don't tell the staff.

Ssshhhh….don’t tell the staff.

a little hard to try and get everything you were seeing and feeling in a short paragraphs.  Right now mommy is recovering well and it extremely happy she doesn’t have to go through a C-Section recovery.  Cora is under some bilirubin lights which prevents us from holding her as much as we like, but she’s still right beside us in our room.  I’m just happy to have 3 wonderful girls in my life every day now and that’s worth celebrating.  If you know anything about me, you know there’s only one way to celebrate…that’s with a nice glass of bourbon (neat of course).  That’s gotta happen…even if it means family has to smuggle it into the hospital.

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Happy Holidays!

So I fell of the blogging bandwagon…again.  Maybe I’ll make that a resolution next year.  Anyways, in the spirit of the holidays here is our version of an annual Christmas card.

Wow, what a difference a year can make.  We’ll start from the beginning and make our way forward.

This year started off on a really difficult note and Christmas last year was one of the harder ones we’ve ever been through.  Early in December 2013 we found out we were expecting another addition to our family.  From the beginning we didn’t feel great about it and unfortunately our fears came true.  Just before Christmas we had a miscarriage and although we kind of expected it, it was still miserable.  For the record, having a daughter (or son) doesn’t make the situation any easier logistically or emotionally.  We love Nella with all our heart but if you have friends\family who are going through it…please do not say “at least you have your son\daughter”.  The process stings no matter what.

So the silver lining…the year could only get better.  Here’s the overview:

Nella really grew physically and emotionally.  She’s a crazy little lunatic in the best way.  A couple of firsts knocked off her list were:

  • Playing in a snow storm with our neighbors (thanks for coming over to sled down our hill!)
  • Going to a zoo and feeding the giraffes.
    • Side note: We also saw some elephants and up until that point I think she thought
      Apple Farm Visit

      Apple Farm Visit

      they were as big as the little figurines we have.  She was petrified when she saw how big they were.

  • Playing outside in the rain.
  • Hanging out with her grandparents (Pops, Tia, Grammy, Pop-Pop, GG,  KT and Grandma Barbara)
  • Going to the “big pool” again and again and again and again (you get the idea…:)).
  • Riding in a real life farm tractor in Mississippi.
  • Picking her first apples
  • Coming Soon: her first day without stomach medicine!!!  We hope to have her completely off before Christmas.
  • Understanding that “when I say it”…”you obey it!” (sometimes)

We love our little girl for all the challenges and joyous moments she provides.  She’s not perfect by any means, but she is perfect for our family.

Kate was able to get really involved on MOPS this year at church.  She was able to put all those years of consulting at Blackbaud to some good use by being the events coordinator

Touch-a-Truck!

Touch-a-Truck Leaders

for the group.  She put a lot of effort, time and checklists into a Touch-A-Truck event that went on at our church and went off as smoothly as any event I’ve seen.  The event brought in people from around the church area and some of the attendees have started coming to our church.  We’ve also through the grapevine that some are already looking forward to the events next year, holla!  I think the best part of MOPS (and probably one of the best parts of her year) is the group of friends she has made because of the meetings and special events.  As a stay-at-home mom she really needs other adults she can see during the week and she has definitely met some great ladies and families throughout the year.   I would be remiss not to mention that we did have a very difficult moment in the year as it related to the Profumo\Cantlon side of the family and that was the passing of the chocolate loving Lenore Cantlon (Kate’s grandma).  She will forever be missed and we’ll always remember her through our daughter’s middle name.

I have had a pretty uneventful year in the big scheme of things.  Don’t get me wrong a lot of things have changed and will continue to change but most of the things I remember are related to daddy-daughter dates (every Saturday morning) and hanging out with my girls. For instance:

  • I love the time Kate and I spend together in the evenings after Nella goes down where we can just unwind and relax.
  • I can’t wait to open the door when I come home from work each day to hear the high pitched “DADDY!!!!!” and see my wife waiting with a hug.
  • I get updates throughout the day (sometimes multiple…:)) from Kate about highlights of what her and Nella are doing.  That always seems to brighten my attitude no matter how hard or easy that day is going.

These are all things I wouldn’t have dreamed of 3-5 years ago but they are now highlights

Playing in the snow.

Playing in the snow.

of my life and I. LOVE. IT.  So through all of the above and being more closely involved in church I’ve very much enjoyed my year.  Even though Time Warner is in the midst of being purchased by Comcast I have this sense of calm that everything is going to work out one way or another.  With my girls and Him by my side I have confidence we are going to be alright…even if that means I get my walking papers at some point next year.

There’s our 2014 in a nut shell.  If I were better about blogging you would have gotten more detail throughout the year but we have a 2 year old and she keeps our hands full.  We look forward to a 2015 that will bring about a bigger family, a bigger Nella and a bigger role at church.  We can’t wait for a bigger 2015!

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The Dyksterhouse is Expanding

Our Newest Little One

Our Newest Little One

Our family is growing!!!  It’s time to let everyone know and you can tell everybody that you know.  In early February we are expecting to welcome our second baby girl.  We just had our 18 week appointment and everything looked fantastic.  It even looked like we may not run into the same complication we had last time (fingers crossed).  If you’re curious about what we hope to avoid this time, see The Honest Truth or almost any other post around that time frame.

You may be thinking…18 weeks!?!?!? Why haven’t you said anything yet?  Honestly, the main reason is that we temper our excitement around pregnancies these days.  Don’t get me wrong, Kate and I can’t wait for little {INSERT NAME} to get here in February but if you know the history with our pregnancies they haven’t been the easiest.  I wrote about our first miscarriage in Reasons for Good Bourbon and that was a tough time.  If you read that statement you’ll notice that word first.  Unfortunately we had another miscarriage last Christmas.  Needless to say it was a Christmas we will always remember, but not for the best reasons.  So for those reasons we made a conscious decision to keep our baby (referred to as Baby-Beauxjangles) under wraps until we got to a point where we felt comfortable with health and future expectations.

So Back to the good news!  Baby girl #2….this means I’m in huge trouble.  There’s going to be way too much pink around the house and I’m going to have my work cut out in raising two girls that like to watch Sportscenter with their dad.  Once we found out the gender of our new addition one of the first things on our mind was to go ahead and decide on a name. We like family names here (see What’s In a Name) and after a little thought we decided on……………….Cora Marie Dyksterhouse.

  • Cora: Kate’s great-grandmother was named Corinne and we liked the sound of Cora which can be a nickname so we settled on that.
  • Marie: This name is all over the Dyksterhouse/Timmer family; Grandmother, neice and sister (and my mom is Mary).

Well there you have it.  A new one on the way and, as always, here a few more pictures of our Nella.

Park time!

Park time!

Go Deacs!

Go Deacs!

She played in the rain for about 30-45 minutes.  I think she liked it...

She played in the rain for about 30-45 minutes. I think she liked it…

Grammy Gram and Pop-Pop

Grammy Grams and Pop-Pop

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Big Girl Bed

And this was after Kate told her to start climbing down...

And this was after Kate told her to start climbing down…

It happened a little sooner than we planned but it happened none the less.  Nella has officially moved out of her crib into a big girl bed.  We weren’t really expecting to do this for another month or two but Nella had other plans…mainly by becoming a climbing monster.  Thankfully she didn’t really get out of her crib often but as you can see by the picture over there——————————> she doesn’t really have a fear of climbing stuff.  And I’ll be honest here, moving her was so much easier than expected.  She loves (LOVES) her new room and has done great with the transition.  I know a few of our friends will be doing in this in the near future as well, I hope it goes smoothly for you…we got lucky in this transition.

To get ready for it we also lucked out pretty big.  Right after we moved to Charlotte Kate and I bought bunk beds for our extra room for our neices and nephews when they would come visit.  With a little handy work by yours truly I was able to drill some new holes to make a complete side rail for the bed to keep our lovable lunatic inside her new sleeping abode.   Then all it took was a trip to Ikea to get a dresser, chair and rug and we were done. We even managed to make it out of Ikea without a meltdown (from Nella or Kate).  Ok, maybe that’s because we let Nella watch Curious George for the last 30-45 minutes. DON’T JUDGE US!

Nella loves riding the light rail

Nella loves riding the light rail

Outside of the big news of moving to the new room it’s been a lot of the same for us.  We (by this I mean I) are really pumped that football season here even though the first Wake game left a lot to be desired.  Here’s to hoping our offense can do something positive before the end of the year.  In the end though it doesn’t really matter…we’ll have a good time at the games regardless.  Especially when you consider the fact a 4 pack of ticket cost us $120 for the season.  That’s total too….comes out to 5 bucks a ticket per game.  Beat that Clempsun!  That’s about it for us right now.  Go Deacs!

 

Searching

You have to concentrate and look closely to find those pennies for the fountain.

Feeling right at home.

Feeling right at home.

Goggles

Lovin her safety goggles

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The Dyksterhouse of Shopping

So it’s finally open.  After a few years of watching our subdivision fill up with new houses and being surrounded by lots of trees and fields our area hit its first milestone of growth. The 100 store Charlotte Premium Outlets opened on July 31st. This is potentially step one of a large expansion in Southwest Charlotte and this expansion is one of the reason why we bought where we did (my work being the main factor).  Here’s our pro’s and con’s list of our new neighbors.  We’ll start with the cons because you always gotta end on a high note (kind of like why you always have to make your last shot in basketball practice):

Cons:

  • Traffic: Obviously more to do is going to bring more traffic.  We live on a street that is currently a main way out of the larger community of Berewick (there are 4 entrances\exits).  We are also located about 1/4 to 1/2 mile away from the
    Nella loves talking into the rain spouts because they echo.

    She loves talking into the rain spouts at the mall because they echo.

    stores.  What this means is that the first weekend the stores were open people started parking on our street because it was all they could find.  Thank you CMPD for cleaning that up quickly and blocking off our street.  In the future we do expect more cars on our street until they finish the main road leading into the neighborhood.
  • Riff-Raff: Being in a more undeveloped area usually means the people and cars coming through are residents or have some sort of connection.  With a few thousands shoppers coming in on the weekends that’s a lot of people with no connection to the neighborhood. Luckily we have a pretty involved community (there was an HOA meeting before the mall opened and a few hundred people showed up) which will help in keeping our neighborhood nice.
  • My Daughter: I now live a 10 minute walk away from a mall with all the stores one could want and I have an extremely cute daughter who loves going there (see Pros section).  It’s only a matter of time before she figures out we can buy things for her.
  • Bojangles: One just opened up about 1 mile from our house.  That’s bad news for the wallet since I basically drive right by it on the way into work every day.

Pros:

  • Bojangles: One just opened up about 1 mile from our house. That’s great news for my stomach since I basically drive right by it on the way into work every day.
  • Ready to go Shopping!!!

    Ready to go Shopping!!!

    Stuff To Do: I should add “FOR FREE” here.  We’ve been to the outlets a few times since it’s opened and Nella absolutely loves it. She loves watching people, walking on the benches, and playing around the fountains. The great think about all of those activities is that they are free and a 10 minute walk from the house and…most importantly it wears her out.  By the time we get back she is exhausted and ready for her nap or bedtime routine.
  • It means more is on the way: From what I’ve heard the outlets is the first step of the area in growing up.  It’s not surprising since we are 15-20 minutes from up town, 5-10 minutes from the airport and 5 minutes from all the major interstates. The planned Berewick Town Center has started to clear ground so more restaurants and some local shops are on the way soon.  Here is what Pappas (the developer) has released recently regarding the town center.
  • Home Value (hopefully): Maybe most importantly I do believe this will help our home value.  With more stuff do within walking distance of the home I think our home price will go up.  It also helps that it’s around the corner but cannot be seen from our house.  We’ll see if this is true in the end and what they build.

Overall we’re happy to have the outlets open and have a little more around us.  There are cons as any area grows up but I think that’s to be expected as more people visit and drop in.  Hopefully the developers and city council continue to do what they can to keep people on the main roads and out of neighborhood to minimize the cons as much as possible.  Also, if you want to go to the outlet mall on the weekend…give us a call before you leave.   Parking is still crazy and you can probably park in our driveway and walk over.  Easy in-easy out and we get to see you!!

                       Nella soup for lunch

Nella soup for lunch!

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30!!!!!!!

I get to check a new box when filling out random forms now, holla!. I know it’s been a while but it’s time to get back on the blogging horse, especially since both Kate and I are pretty much off the Facebook wagon (Facebook is not for mature 30 somethings like myself). So here’s an update on the Dyksterhouse:

1. Nella is a raving lunatic. Don’t get me wrong, we love her to pieces…but she is crazy with CoolKidan extra does of cray-cray. She’s very verbal (watch what you say around her!), pretty clumsy, and hitting her turrble twos. This means she’ll routinely surprise us with a properly placed short phrase like “Daddy’s funny!” At this point we’re thinking (or at least me) I’m the best parent ever! Shortly after said genius moment she will proceed to run into the side of the couch and fall faster than a world cup soccer player. While those are the funny moments we can all laugh at she has plenty of her hissy fit moments due to major catastrophes such as:
– Putting on a shirt she “doesn’t like”
– Giving her milk in cup A when she wants cup B
– Not letting her open the oven

2. Kate is a saint. For those that don’t know (or have forgotten) Kate stays at home with Nella during the day. The common non-working mom stereotype is one of glamour and rest. I can tell you from the exhaustion I see each evening that couldn’t be further from the truth. She loves it and we wouldn’t have it any other way for our family but she’s not exactly eating bon bons and watching Real Housewives. I am extremely blessed to have her want to stay home and raise Nella each day. Outside of that she is helping with MOPS (Mother of Pre-Schoolers) and planning a lot of their fundraising events. Who knew Blackbaud knowledge would be this helpful 3-4 years later?

Lawnmower3. Jimmy…still has a job? For now…the question mark pretty much says it all. You’ve probably heard about the Comcast\TWC merger (and may have some pretty strong feelings towards it if you are a customer) and right now there’s really no change in my day to day. The FCC is reviewing the merger and I believe that ends in mid to late January. What happens after that no one really knows and I’m just taking it in stride while attempting to make myself as valuable as possible on a day to day basis so if my position is eliminated…it might buy me some time as they off board all my work onto someone else. Other than work stuff I’ve very much enjoyed checking things off my list, helping with the youth group at church and now counting down the days until college football starts (Season tickets just came in!!!).

Finally, here’s what everyone really wants to see. Pictures of the most popular member of the family. Hopefully I can update this thing a little more frequently and if you need to contact either Kate or I please don’t message on Facebook….em
ail, text or call is best.

I heart purses

I heart purses

Cousins on the Farm

Cousins on the Farm

 

On Uncle's farm

On Uncle’s farm

Mellow Mushroom with a friend.

Mellow Mushroom with a friend.

Ice Cream Face!!

Ice Cream Face!!

Cheezy Smile

Cheezy Smile

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