Saturday, January 10, 2009
I'm loving my Netflix - Thanks Noni & Popi!
So far I've watched:

Run, Fatboy, Run - I loves me some Simon Pegg.
Mamma Mia! - I'm still plagued with ABBA earworms. Enjoyed the movie though.
Vantage Point - I actually had to set the laptop aside and concentrate on that one.
In Bruges - Slow getting started but the payoff at the end was well worth it.
Don't Mess With the Zohan - Do not waste your time. Horrible self-indulgent vanity project.
Next up: Get Smart
Friday, January 09, 2009
A "poem" I ran across
I found this shortly after I knew I was pregnant a second time and thought about using it in announcing the news here. Obviously I didn't, but I thought I'd share it now. It kinda got

"Where did I come from?" the baby asked its mother. She answered, half-crying, half-laughing, and clasping the baby to her breast: "You were hidden in my heart as its desire, my darling. You were in the dolls of all my childhood games. In all my hopes and my loves, in my life, in the life of my mother, and in her mother before her, you have lived."

--Rabindranath Tagore
Thursday, January 08, 2009
Paging Meredith...
Hey, Brian R. found me on Facebook and is looking for email and/or snail mail addresses for you and Mike. When I went to my Yahoo contacts I found an address that I think might be dated. It began "atc..." or something like that. Don't you have a newer/better one I could pass along?

Also, we, the committee of two, think that both you and Mike should get Facebook accounts so we can bug you more easily/regularly. It's very disappointing to join Facebook to find your old friends and realize that all the cool kids haven't joined yet.

P. S. He also says Patti and Peyton are now in Roanoke.

Email me with your response if you want. Thanks!
Meet Jack

This is our son, with his feet in his face. The ultrasound doctor had a very difficult time getting the shot because of the two feet and umbilical cord in the way. You can see some of the bounceback from the cord as a line going down his forehead and on down.

I'm not sharing the standard u/s shots because they're nothing remarkable. A foot here, a leg here, and a blobby face. We did get the "money shot," the proof positive that we're having a boy, but I thought it might be nice to preserve my son's modesty for now.

So M was right. He saw it in a vision at eight weeks or so, and he was right. Personally, I still credit that whole 50/50 chance thing.

The appointment went really well. First the tech did her scans. I was thinking I had seen boy parts twice by the time she asked if we wanted to know the sex. Then she found "it" right away. They didn't give us percentages or anything, just "It's a boy!"

Both the tech and the doc who came in to do scans kept using words like "perfect" "pretty" "gorgeous" and "handsome" when checking out various vital organs. Makes a mama proud. No problems were detected. When the (male) doc went to check out the sex organ himself he said, "Ha! Look where his hand is. What do you think it's doing down there?" I said, "Ahh...pulling?" He laughed. He said he had a patient ask him once when they ever stop doing that. He told her "They never do, they just become more discreet." I told him to pity the poor girls who have nothing to play with in there.

We're naming him Jack Ellis. Jack is the name of my father-in-law, who died suddenly and unexpectedly two months before Emma was born. Ellis is Noni's father's name.

We had narrowed down our boy name choices to three. I told M I wanted my son to have a strong, masculine name that wasn't trendy or "popular." I wanted a name that would fit a "captain of industry," a name that wouldn't hold him back in the business world. Of the three names we were considering we both liked Jack the most. It's almost a bonus that it's a family name.

It's such a relief to finally know the baby's gender. Now we know that we do need boy clothes and can be better prepared. On the other hand I tried to explain to M that even though I got what I really wanted, I still mourn a little for what could have been with another girl. It's wide open dreams when you have the possibility of either and when you're narrowed down to one it's just a little bit sad. Maybe it's just me being weird. I dunno.
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Dangerous morning commute
On the way to work I can fall into the most difficult conversations with Emma. First, we're talking about coyotes. She got a cute little fuzzy coyote in her stocking from Santa. So we talk about the coyotes in the area, why she doesn't see them, how they kill the farmer's sheep so the farmers might shoot them if they see them. Then she naturally assumes that when the sheep die they go to heaven and see Baby Jesus. I didn't really feel like going into the whole thing where animals don't really go to heaven, but it didn't matter because she immediately switched topics.

"When people die how do they get to heaven?"

"Well, their souls, the part of them that is most special to God, goes to heaven and their bodies stay here."

"Then how will I walk around when I get to heaven?"

"God can give you a new body."

"Mama, am I going to die?"

Big sigh. "Yes, Emma, everybody dies someday. But most people don't die until they're really, really old."

"Mama, I want to stop having birthdays when I'm ten. Can you do that for me?"
(We've actually heard this solution to the "dying problem" several times before)

"Honey, I can't do that."

"Mommy, I don't want to die." The tears begin.

"Emma, you're not going to die for a really, really long time. Not until you're very old."

"How do I get back from Heaven?"

"Once you go to Heaven you never come back."

"You're there forever?"


"I don't want to get old." The tears are really flowing now.

Now we're at Mary's and her face is wet with tears. But she continues once we're inside.

"Mommy, I don't want to get old." (As she's standing near to 85 year-old Arnet)

"Honey, it's a blessing to get old. It means you get to live a long life and see lots of things."

Mary talks to her a bit and tries to distract her.

As I'm preparing to leave Emma looks at me,

"Mommy, when I go heaven I won't see you again. I don't want die and go to heaven."

Now I really need to go to work.

"Emma, please stop worrying. You're not going to die for a very, very long time. I will see you this afternoon. You're going to be all right, now please cheer up."

Thank goodness I'm leaving her in the hands of a devoted Christian woman who won't steer her wrong or make things worse. As I was trying to break away Mary was asking her about the little animals she was carrying and working hard to distract her. It's damned hard to walk away when all you really want to do is cuddle her in your arms and reassure her that you "will" be there for her. Forever, if you can.
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
One of my favorite photos...
From New Year's morning, when we finally celebrated Christmas with Uncle B's family.

And some others...Uncle B with his new Monkey Butt powder.

A big ol' stack of family.

A good day in BlogWorld
Andrew Breitbart, who used to help Matt Drudge run The Drudge Report, who then helped Arianna Huffington launch The Huffington Post (It hurts to link, Owww!), and then launched his own news aggregator, has now launched Big Hollywood, a web site about the entertainment industry and popular culture written by conservatives with conservatives in mind. His goal is to take Hollywood back for people who don't hate America, a worthy goal. I'll be checking it out.

Secondly, another blog that I love (and loathe a little) The Consumerist, was bought by the Consumer's Union, the Consumer Reports people. It was sold by Nick Denton, who owns Gawker Media, a collection of often useful, but editorially very snide and superior websites. That's where the loathe part comes from. The Consumerist is full of great articles about consumers fighting back against bad service or shady practices in the retail world. A perfect fit for the Consumer's Union. I look forward to lots of great new articles without the sneering tone.
Sunday, January 04, 2009
Now that the New Year is here...
It's time to turn my thoughts toward preparing for a new baby. The holidays seemed like a big hump to me and now that we're over it I need to start thinking more seriously about preparations. On my "to do" list:

1. Call Expedia and cancel my New York vacation in April (waaaaaaaa!) I did buy vacation insurance so hopefully I won't take a bath on it. I imagine the sticking point will be getting anything back from the airlines.

2. The household purge needs to kick into overdrive. Out with the crap!

3. We need to make room in Emma's room for another occupant. We had converted the crib to a daybed so now I just hope we can find all the parts to convert it back to a crib. We'll need a chest of drawers for Emma's stuff so we can use the old dresser/changing table for the baby. We'll add bars inside the top of the tall free-standing cabinet so that we can hang baby clothes in there. Let me tell sucks living in a house with no closets.

4. We'll need to go to the storeroom in M's store and find all the baby things we stowed away. We haven't gotten rid of a single thing. It's all there. The question is whether it's taken a beating in the storeroom and whether all the parts are there.

5. I need to figure out how to get health insurance for the baby. If I add her to my work insurance I'll be back to paying over $400 a month for one child. That's while already paying over $400 monthly for individual policies on M and Emma. I really hope I can somehow purchase an individual policy for the baby, but I'm not sure how you do that on a newborn and still have hospital pediatricians covered. More fun with insurance, yay!

Added note: This Thursday is finally the day we have our anatomy ultrasound and find out the sex of the baby. The anticipation is killing me!
New Year's Night
You can see the excitement in the air, eh?

Shortly after this photo we gathered at the dining room table to play games. That lasted until time for the VA Tech v. Cincinnati Orange Bowl game.

01-01-09 12:00 a.m.
She didn't quite make it. We were standing all around her toasting the New Year. Her cousins had her convinced she could stay up till "tomorrow." She gave it a good go.