I dropped off Hunter yesterday for his new first day of school. He’s in the first grade and his teacher is Ms. Fort. He had a great teacher last year with Mrs. Dale and we’re hoping for another good year this year.
School starts every day 8:15am and I’m pretty happy to get our morning routine back.
I just spent a week at our family cabin in the Poconos and thought i’d write a little recap as it was a great trip all around. Some highlights:
Mckenzie and Tracey
Over the past 10-20 years it’s been tough to see Mckenzie during the summer as he spends a good chunk of it in Europe leading archaeological digs. This year he was able to join us after the dig but before the fall school session begins. It was really great to see him. As we get older it’s good to get a good number of days with someone to get a feel for their daily habits and lifestyle.
The big event that occurred was the proposal between the two. One beautiful Thursday night Mckenzie and Tracey went for a walk after dinner. While the dishes were being washed in the Glass House (thanks mom) Mckenzie presented Tracey with a ring he picked up in Florence and asked her to marry him!
We continue to get to know Tracey and she is really awesome. A highlight for me was arguing with her about the differences between Canada and the US and discussing the problems we have here in the US and what some approaches might be to fix them (not a quick convo, as you could imagine). I liked it because the conversation got heated in a way it can between people who like to argue and are family.
Of course Georgia was in tow and it was really awesome to see Sasha and her (and sometimes Hunter) play together. Sasha and G are the same age (both 4) so they seemed quite comfortable with each other and their playing was incredibly cute.
Hunter did seem a bit left out sometimes but that’s to be expected when there’s only 3 (ahem, we need Reagan next time). But, the three of them did get some good play time in:
Kids and School
Now that our kids are getting older, we’re experiencing Summer break and the chafe that it is for two working parents. Hunter is between kindergarten and 1st grade and is off for the summer and we have to find things for him to do. We cobbled together a series of camps but this means that getting together as a family in the summer is much more logical than in years past
I haven’t been to my family’s cabin in the Poconos for almost a decade. It is so beautiful. The lake, the river and nature surrounding it are just awesome.
It’s also nice having my parents there and able to see and catch up with other semi-related folks. The cabins could be nicer (especially our Middle Camp) but it is great to have a place to go and have lots of family around.
Diane especially was a fan of the rustic nature of the cabins. Her childhood was spent traveling to Mexico every weekend and staying in half-built homes while they hung out with family and friends while enjoying the natural beauty of the ocean. She got the same feeling this past week, making the whole experience better for her.
We loved and plan on heading back again next year…
He’s really grown a lot of this year. He’s thoughtful and curious. He has a deep love of animals. His favorite animals this year, in order, were his 2016 favorites of the colossal squid, and then spent the bulk of the year idolizing bats (specifically the Somoan Flying Fox bat which has a wingspan of over 7 feet) and recently he’s super into dinosaurs. He continues to be more cerebral than physical. He’s much more content to sit on the couch drawing than kicking a ball or playing on the playground. We did get him riding a bike later this year. This is hard because it’s so hilly where we live that we can’t go out out front door and ride but rather have to drive to a school or area to do it. We had some issues potty-training him this year but he’s now past that and, in almost all ways, a big kid now.
Wow, what a year for her. She’s now talking and convening her thoughts and emotions so well. From a personality standpoint, she’s a force. She’s very strong. She wants what she wants and like what she likes. She’s not afraid to speak up and lead. She often loves to step up and start telling Hunter what to do. She’s super active. From the moment she wakes up, she wants to get out the door and go running and play. She likes to try to keep up with Hunter and does so pretty well. She doesn’t like fruit or vegetables at all (sorry about those genes, sasha). She loves the color pink and is very particular of what she wears and picks out her outfit everyday (Hunter, by contrast, does not care at all). She’s still a total daddy’s girl but increasingly is all about mom too.
With Sasha getting to 3, we are emerging out of infant zone. The four of us can now take a drive and all talk in one conversation. We can sit at a table in a restaurant and get through the meal without disaster striking. Heck, we’re even talking about a road trip and feeling excited about it. We’re starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel and it looks glorious. I think 2018 will be a great family year.
She had a huge year. She started a new job at a startup (30 people) called Peerspace. Peerspace is a marketplace similar to Airbnb that offers locations for offsite and events. She’s responsible for host expansion and is loving it. She also crushed being a mom this year. Hunter and Diane have a special bond that is truly great to see and Sasha is typically Daddy’s girl, she currently obsessed with her.
At Airbnb, there’s a new business unit and I’m running the product group for it. The role was quite a change for me as I am being stretched in new ways. It’s exciting but also exhausting. We have a launch coming up in 2018 so stay tuned.
Diet and Exercise
I ended last year strong and running a lot. That ended almost immediately in 2018. I injured my knee again in January/February and decided to take some time off. I also decide to try a new weight loss tactic. Over the past few years i had been steadily gaining weight and found myself at the beginning of the year at over 195 lbs, the heaviest i’d ever been. I have always relied on running and working out as a way to lose weight and with that being removed due to knee problems, i decided to focus on my eating. I knew I could limit my portions as that’s very hard for me to do. But, i knew that i could limit the number of meals I eat. That seemed doable. So, i started skipping breakfast starting in March. Surprisly, it wasn’t hard to do and it was very effective in cutting calories and thus weight. You can see from the graph below that 2017 was by far my most successful year as i dropped 20 lbs this year and ended at 175.
This was the first year i started to feel old. My knee gave out at the beginning of the year and other aches started to manifest as I went on. There’s more grey hair. Heck, there’s more hair everywhere (hello, ear hair). 40 is an interesting number as I now no longer feel i’m on the upward swing of my life. I’m hitting a middle plateau, at least physically. I’ve peaked. I’m sure i could get back to running 7 min miles, but i’m never going to again run 2 miles under 12 minutes again. I also am getting the least amount of sleep ever. With the kids waking up early and the job going late, i’m burning it at both ends. It’s been an exhausting 6-12 months, and i’m finishing the year feeling old.
That said, we had a fantastic outing to Jackson Hole with the extended family. Check out that video:
I thought we were time constrained when Hunter came along. Well, with two little ones this year, aged 1 and 3, time really got sucked away from me. Less sleep, fewer workouts, fewer books read. All the things I like to do just for me basically went out the door this year. But, they were replaced with more time with my family, which was just fantastic.
He really became a full fledged person this year. He’s now funny and clever. He has a bit of trickery and deviousness in him, but he’s shaping up to be a very kind person. His teachers at school regularly remark about how genuine and kind he is. Also, his super power this year is his drawing. He’s very creative and can draw ridiculously well. Continue reading “The Lewhouses in 2016”→
We had a big addition to the Lewis family last week. On 1/1/2015 we welcomed Sasha Linda Lewis to the family. She’s already changed our world quite a bit.
When we had Hunter in 2012 I published a blog post about the birth. It was a play-by-play of the entire day. At the time I thought it’d be a fun little look at the event but over the years Diane and I found ourselves referring to it more than we had thought we would. We found ourselves getting the time and events all wrong and were thankful that it was actually posted somewhere. Also, we heard that others found it useful to hear how things actually go once you’re at the hospital. Because of that, i’m posting again what actually happened at the hospital last week. Enjoy… Continue reading “Welcome Sasha Lewhouse”→
Well the time is cursing by and Hunter is growing up really fast. I thought i’d take another moment to reflect on how things are going. Some thoughts:
Man is he growing. The first year now seemed more about physical development. He was just getting bigger and learning how to use his limbs. Now he seems more about exercising his brain. He’s constantly trying to figure stuff out. How to open jars. How doors work. Why switching a light switch here changes the brightness over there. Lots of stuff like this are all the rage at our house right now. So much so that i have found that if you’re not challenging what he knows, he gets bored quickly and then things spiral out of control. He’s a high bandwidth kid. I have no idea if this is unusual or not.
Because this is now the norm, he’s much more of a little person these days. He has expressions and words and a personality. He’s definitely a human and, to me, he’s getting cuter and cuter.
I recently heard Shondra Rhimes’ Dartmouth commencement address where she talks about how she’s both a working woman and a mother and how she juggles it all. Her answer: she doesn’t. I know how she feels. Prior to Hunter, I would work pretty late almost every night. Now I like to see Hunter before he goes to sleep. There’s a struggle between being doing well at work and seeing my family, and I don’t think there’s a good answer. Ultimately, I’ll always be failing at one of them. I’m having to get used to that fact. It’s quite a change.
Shondra says it much better than I:
If I am killing it on a Scandal script for work, I’m probably missing bath and story time at home. If I am at home sewing my kids’ Halloween costumes, I am probably blowing off a script I was supposed to rewrite. If I’m accepting a prestigious award, I’m missing my baby’s first swim lesson. If I am at my daughter’s debut in her school musical, I am missing Sandra Oh’s last scene ever being filmed at Grey’s Anatomy.
If I am succeeding at one, I am inevitably failing at the other. That is the trade off. That is the Faustian bargain one makes with the devil that comes with being a powerful working woman who is also a powerful mother. You never feel one hundred percent okay, you never get your sea legs, you are always a little nauseous. Something is always lost.
I’m constantly amazed how similar babies are to old people. The drooling, the babbling, the lack of coordination. Just very very similar. Circle of life.
Default State of Happiness
When Hunter wakes up in the morning, he’s smiling. By default, he’s happy. He’s giggling and smiling unless something happens to make him upset. It makes me think that this is the default state for most humans. I often think about this. I wonder that if we have to have something negative happen to us to be in a permanent bad mood. I see people yelling at traffic or walking the street with a frown on their face. They weren’t born that way. Something has happened. When i’m feeling upset or sad, I try to remember that. It’s the world interacting with me that got me there. It’s not how I am by default. I like that thought.
I was visiting my grandmother last weekend. This is the same grandmother that was spotted on the streets of Manhattan at age 90 and asked to be a model for GNC (blog post: My Grandmother is Amazing). She was remarking about how she loves to see photos of the great-grandkids. I have one cousin who sends her an email of a picture every day. I left feeling like i was really laking in my picture sending.
Then, enter the Postgram App. With this app, i can grab any picture on my phone or in Instagram and send it as a postcard. You enter in a message and an address and it gets sent automatically. Viola.
Now, my grandma is getting mail all the time of pictures. Yes!
2013 was an interesting year. Here are a few of the things I’ll remember about it:
Diane and I bought our first house. After 3 years in Denver, we moved up to Boulder and bought a nice little house in North Boulder. It’s the perfect size and location. It’s close both to downtown (where we work) and the mountains so our commute is nothing and we can walk to the hiking trails. It’s a huge game changer.
My stint as a single parent. I’ll never forget the 10 weeks I spent taking care of Hunter. The baths, the feedings, the walks, the coordinating with the nanny – I got to really understand what it’s like to be responsible. I really think it’s made me a much better parent now having that experience. It also made Diane really happy which makes me happy. I love it when she shines – there’s nothing better.
I lost 20 pounds. During that time with Hunter, i got into a running routine and ate a bunch less for dinner, and as a result i dropped some serious weight. Although i put some back on over the holidays, it was game changing for me. I feel a lot better both physically and mentally. I’m still keeping to the 4x a week routine and should be able to keep the weight down to 170-175 (I was at 193)
This past year was a pivotal year for Kapost. We really grew the business and we hired some incredible folks. We went from 13 people to 42 and from under 400k in revenue to 1.8MM.
The Boulder flood was an incredible experience. Seeing that much rain and what i can do to a town is frightening. It destroyed our basement but nowhere near what it did to others. Seeing a rush of water crush down your front door is a nightmare. Here’s a video of a friend’s apartment building where they all had to be rescued from the second floor.
Becoming an uncle. I’m so happy for Liz and Mike. Knowing all the crap they went through to try to have a kid, then to finally get pregnant, then to have such a beautiful girl come into the world – I’m so happy both for them and for me. It’s really fun having that girl around and i can’t wait for Hunter and Reagan to become friends.
Those are the things that pop out in my mind in 2013. Here’s to a great 2014!