June 30, 2005

Battling Stereotypes

I had some end-of-the-month business to take care of at work while I’m still on paternity leave so I packed up Swee’Pea and we headed for the Y. After signing invoices and making sure all the finances were in order for the end of the month (doesn’t my job sound exciting!?), I stopped at the various programs to let my staff see Swee’Pea for the first time. My last stop was the pre-school where the kids are 3-5 years old and sooo cute. I love visiting the pre-school because I always get kids rushing up and hugging my legs. This day, they noticed I had Swee’Pea in the infant carrier and everyone gathered around to look at her. One of the kids asked if Swee’Pea was a boy or a girl. “A girl.” I responded.

Then a little boy right next to me said, in all seriousness, “Noooo. If that’s a girl, why does she have a boy haircut?”

June 28, 2005

Our babies don’t suck

Yesterday we had a home visit from a “lactation consultant” to help us figure out this breast feeding thing. You see, the babies can latch onto the breast and it even looks like they are sucking but they seem pretty hungry after breastfeeding so we have to continue supplementing the feedings with this syringe and feeding tube.

Needless to say, this tube feeding, while effective, is very time consuming and was getting old, fast. Jonathan was also having some trouble latching on and became fussy quickly when breast feeding. As a result, we knew we needed help. We called the hospital and they referred us to a lactation consultant. She arrived yesterday with her high-tech scale and, before we knew it, we were weighing the babies prior to feeding and then we weighed them after feeding. Everything looked fine until the weight of the babies showed they were not sucking in any milk. Ugh.

Then, it happened. The lactation consultant pulled out the best darn thing I’ve ever seen. She pulled out The Haberman Feeder, which is a phallic-looking bottle that can be manipulated to force the baby to suck harder to get it’s milk. The cost: $25 per bottle. I would have paid ten times that amount to get something that can be used in one sitting so easily. So now the babies are being fed with this gift from heaven and we’ll continue to put them to the breast to see if the training pays off. Keep your fingers crossed.

June 27, 2005

Things I didn’t know two weeks ago…

1) A fluid Ounce in the United Kingdom is different than a fluid ounce in the United States. (At least that’s what the baby bottles say)

2) The little snaps on a Onesie are so strong I’m thinking of using them when we fit Swee’Pea for her chastity belt.

3) Just about every television program has Closed Captioning for hearing impaired (and people with sleeping babies).

4) Baby poop after ingesting formula is WAY worse than baby poop after ingesting breast milk.

5) Surprisingly, one can operate on four hours sleep a night (Just don’t expect me to be all jovial. I mean, I AM operating on just FOUR HOURS SLEEP!)

6) Breast feeding is *&%#ing hard! I mean, it’s a wonder the human race survived this long! I’m certain that the population explosion on this planet must have coincided with the invention of baby formula.

7) You can pay someone to come to your house to give pointers on breast feeding. (So this is what all those Art History majors ended up doing after college.)

8) Ants like breast milk (you don’t want to know how we know this).

9) Once you have two newborn babies, the outside world ceases to exist. I have no idea what has gone on in the world in the last two weeks.

10) Holding two sleeping babies in my arms is even more awesome than I thought it would be.

June 24, 2005

Big Brother

We set up our baby monitor yesterday and finally ventured downstairs for the first time in a week. We turned the monitor on downstairs and went about preparing and eating dinner while listening for sounds on the baby monitor. The first noise heard on our monitor Not cries, not coos, not even whimpers. No, we heard the distinct sounds of babies passing gas. So, at least we knew we would need to change them after dinner.

We also put a receiver in our loft area which is just down the hall from our master bedroom where we currently are holed up with the babies. Andrea and I were changing the babies and getting them ready to feed when we heard the distinct sound of a baby crying. We looked at the babies in our arms and then at each other’s puzzled faces only to realize that the sounds we were hearing were not coming from our babies but from the baby monitor down the hall. I headed down the hall to the receiver and I could distinctly hear a woman singing to her baby as she fed him/her. It was a bit eerie to be listening in on an unknown neighbor so I quickly changed the channel.

Andrea and I will just have to remember not to discuss state secrets when holding the babies from now on.

Five Years

Today is my 5-year wedding anniversary. It’s hard to believe that five years have lapsed so quickly. We have accomplished so much in that time. We’ve changed cities, jobs, bought a house and had kids. Wow.

Eight years ago I got an email from a woman named Andrea from Colorado who happened to see a web page (now defunct) that said a bit about me. “We have a lot in common.” She said in the email. Indeed. But who knew that someday we would be holding our son and daughter and marveling at the randomness of the universe and how fate and destiny seemed intertwined in our lives in a way that only a higher power could comprehend I am grateful and humbled at the same time.

Today, I thank God for sending me my soul mate and I thank Andrea for being such a wonderful wife, friend, and mother.

Happy Anniversary Sweetheart. I love you.

June 23, 2005


Tuesday I packed up Jonathan in his infant carrier, double checked the items I had in my cool, manly backpack diaper bag and we headed out. I had an errand or two to run before I took Jonathan to the doctor or a, ahem, “male” procedure. Our first stop was to Kohls department store to pick up a second set of King size sheets for our bed. We had put off buying a second set and, instead, would wash the sheets and put them right back on the same day. Now, however, it quickly became apparent that we would be changing our sheets a lot more often due to baby spit-up and breast milk flying around our bed. So Jonathan and I found a shopping cart made specifically for infant carriers and off we went to shop. Jonathan, being the babe magnent that he is, got lots of attention as we made our way through the store. I stopped off in the women’s sport clothes section and picked up a couple of tank tops for Andrea to wear around the house. We then proceeded to housewares where I picked up the sheets. Everything was going well and I paid for the items and we made our way back out the car. Once to the car, I carefully loaded Jonathan back into the car, fiddled with the mirror we installed in the back so I could see him from up front, and got into the car and headed to the doctor’s office.

Upon a successful return home from the doctor, I brought Jonathan upstairs and was telling Andrea how great everything had gone when I suddenly realized that I didn’t have the Kohls items. I had left them in the shopping cart in the parking lot. So, I flew down the stairs and drove quickly to Kohls (luckily it’s only a five minute drive) and found the cart where I had left it. I looked inside – nothing. I hurried inside and inquired at the register and they directed me to customer service. It turns out that customer service had the shirts but no sheets. I feared as much and was prepared to re-purchase $80 sheets (on sale) when the young lady picked up the phone, told the manager my problem and asked if she could replace the sheets. I was very grateful when she said “yes.”

Upon returning home, a bit red-faced, I looked at Andrea and said, “Well, at least I remembered the baby and forgot the goods – not the other way around!”

June 18, 2005

Personal Hygiene

In the past 24 hours I have changed 19 diapers. Twelve of those have involved the proverbial “Number Two.” If I wasn’t there when these two were feeding, I would be asking them, “What are they feeding you” It’s funny how quickly you can become an expert in something you’ve never done if you just keep doing it. In the past week I’d like to think I’ve grown pretty savvy in the diaper disposal and tushy sanitation department. The volume alone of diapers changed would be an indicator of my experience. In the past 3.5 days I have gone through 95 baby wipes and almost two packages of diapers. This, I’ve decided is what parenting is all about – bragging about mundane things every parent does.

But there are casualties to my constant changing of diapers and that is my hands. My hands are becoming chapped from all of the hand washing I’ve been doing. I mean, I wash them after every diaper change, every time I use the restroom, before I “finger feed” the kids, after changing the kitty litter, I could go on. I have considered using the hand sanitizer gel but I don’t like the way that feels on my hands either. I’m not a big hand lotion person – especially since I’ll have to put my fingers in the kid’s mouths. Anyone got a suggestion for this one

June 17, 2005


Last night I partook in my new favorite pastime – watching the babies sleep. As I gazed at Swee’Pea, I told her how beautiful she is, how much I loved her and that she’ll always be Daddy’s little girl.

Only then did I realize I was talking to TheMonk.

I guess I do need more sleep.

June 16, 2005

Birth Day – The aftermath

Yesterday, we brought our two little ones home from the hospital. We could have stayed one extra day but, frankly, we needed some rest! This is a little-known secret of hospital stays that no one mentioned to us prior to our delivery – You don’t sleep for longer than 30 minute intervals because someone is always coming into your room to check on the babies or the mom or both. On Tuesday morning we had 11 people come into our room in a 4 1/2 hour span. These included doctors, nurses, nurses assistants, food delivery people, birth certificate person, lactation consultant, and some woman wanting to give Andrea Communion. So, once we were cleared we brought the babies back to our humble home. Last night we got more sleep than the previous three nights combined. I feel so refreshed! (I never thought I’d say that after only getting four hours sleep.)

Feeding two babies at once is a challenge but Andrea and I have settled into a routine and it seems to be getting better. The babies are still learning to suck at the breast so we supplement their breast feeding sessions with a syringe and a small thin tube placed along side our finger as we put our finger in their mouth. They suck on the finger while we squeeze the syringe. Very effective feeding method. Right now we have settled into a schedule of feeding them every two and a half to three hours. It takes us about an hour to feed them both but on the rare occasion when they have both fed at the breast at the same time (Thank God that He made two breasts), the time has been about 40 minutes. Andrea then has to pump for another 20 minutes after feeding them so by the time we’re done with the feeding cycle, We only have about an hour to an hour and a half before we start all over again. So far, all we’ve done is nap, eat and clean during that time. They sleep in between and the whole saying that all babies do is Eat, Sleep and Poop would pretty much describe our first few days. Of course while babies may Eat, Sleep and Poop – parents don’t always have that luxury. I’m tired but it’s a good tired and today has been a good day.

So far, so good.

June 14, 2005

New Arrivals

I am proud to announce the arrival of Swee’Pea and TheMonk on Sunday June 12, 2005 at 3:50 and 3:51 a.m. TheMonk is older – hopefully he won’t hold that over Swee’Pea for the rest of her life.

Babies and Mama are doing great. The babies are learning to breastfeed and Mom is recovering nicely from the C-Section. The little buggers came a couple days earlier than anticipated as we had a C-Section scheduled for the 14th. Andrea was in complete denial right up until they handed her the hospital gown and admittance bracelet.

Lots to tell but we’re not back from the hospital yet. Please check back later. You’ll also be able to see pics of the babies on their new photoblog on the right once we return.

Now, back to the mayhem…

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