The Son Also Rises

Our sec­ond child — a boy named Wyatt Paul — was born yes­ter­day morn­ing. Cur­rent­ly, every­one is doing very well and we’re still in the hos­pi­tal as my wife recov­ers from surgery. My in-laws are stay­ing at our house and watch­ing our daugh­ter.

All things con­sid­ered, it seems that this deliv­ery went even smoother than the first time. Angela has been in bet­ter health (minus hor­ri­ble heart­burn & nau­sea) and her recov­ery seems to be going even faster this go round. We have a very brief scare just before the sched­uled surgery time when it appeared her blood pres­sure had dra­mat­i­cal­ly dropped and his heart rate also dropped. After lit­er­al­ly run­ning my wife’s bed down the hall to the OR, they quick­ly real­ized all was okay and let us breathe again.


Calm Before the Storm
Operating Room

Moments lat­er, at exact­ly 8:17 am, we had a hand­some lit­tle baby boy. Angela, though heav­i­ly sedat­ed, got to spend a bit of time with him before I took him off to the nurs­ery (well, I fol­lowed the nurs­es, any­way). There, he was greet­ed by two of his grand­par­ents and his big sis­ter on the oth­er side of the glass.


Wyatt Paul Coleman
Meet Your New Baby Brother

He was weighed and mea­sured while I watched in the nurs­ery. His weight was 7 lbs. 8 oz. (exact­ly what Angela had guessed) and his length was 20 1/4 in. I went out to see my daugh­ter and talk to my fam­i­ly. I then went back to the room to wait on Angela and make some phone calls. Angela got wheeled back in to the room about 30 min­utes lat­er. And, much to our delight, Wyatt came in just moments there­after. He began feed­ing with­out much trou­ble and has been doing great ever since.


And In This Corner...
Happy Parents

Ange­la’s par­ents have been back by with Ains­ley a cou­ple of times since. Ains­ley is already point­ing at her lit­tle broth­er and say­ing “baby!” As I stat­ed ear­li­er, Angela has been recov­er­ing very well. We’re all set to go home as soon as we can.

In the mean­time, all the lat­est news and infor­ma­tion on Wyatt is over at his web­site.

The View Gets Better

Two Thou­sand and Eight is final­ly wind­ing down to a close.

Sit­ting at my desk, star­ing out the office win­dow over­look­ing the park. It’s hard for me to real­ly recall all that has gone on in the past year or so that got me here. I remem­ber being upset, frus­trat­ed — angry, even. A lot. How­ev­er, view now is so nice it all seems to have fad­ed into the dis­tance. Just one thing real­ly reminds me of all that.

I’m exhaust­ed.

Look­ing back over the past year, it has been one of extreme highs and lows. And I think that may be true for many more peo­ple than our fam­i­ly, even. The hous­ing mar­ket. A pres­i­den­tial elec­tion. The econ­o­my. It all seems to be swing­ing in such wild cir­cles.

When we decid­ed to move back to Ten­nessee, I knew it was going to be tough sell­ing out house on Fitzhugh in Rich­mond. I real­ly did­n’t know just how tough it was going to be. I had no idea that the coun­try was going to be hit­ting one of the worst hous­ing mar­kets in its his­to­ry. Add to that our ever increas­ing frus­tra­tions with our real estate agent and we had a rough time of it. We lost a very large chunk of the equi­ty we’d built up in the home. But then again, there are a lot of peo­ple in this coun­try who are in far worse cir­cum­stances with their homes and mort­gages1. We final­ly got aligned with the right agent — who sold the home in twelve days. A very large weight off of our shoul­ders.

We found a decent apart­ment when we moved down, but we knew it would­n’t be any place we could live for long. How­ev­er, hav­ing spent the past six years liv­ing in a pret­ty urban envi­ron­ment, mov­ing to Williamson Coun­ty, TN has been some­thing of a shock to us. We real­ly do love the place but we’re still adjust­ing to the peo­ple here. We found a new sub­di­vi­sion we liked and decid­ed to pro­ceed on hav­ing a home built back in April. How­ev­er, with the threat of not get­ting our home in Rich­mond sold by the end of the year, it was hard to get much enjoy­ment out of watch­ing our home be built.
Over the com­ing few months, we did mon­i­tor the progress of the new house. As it drew near com­ple­tion, we got the word that we had a buy­er in Rich­mond. All seemed well.

Then, we learned that some changes in the mort­gage indus­try which had come into place recent­ly were going to affect us. We had to move up our sale in Rich­mond to coin­cide with the sale here. Nor­mal­ly, this would­n’t be a prob­lem except we only were give four days notice. It took a mas­sive amount of phone calls to lawyers, banks, real estate agents, builders, etc. to get it to hap­pen; but it did. In the end, we turned in the keys to our apart­ment and closed on two dif­fer­ent homes all with­in about four hours. Oh, this was also the day after what has been called the largest finan­cial col­lapse in Amer­i­can his­to­ry since the Great Depres­sion. You might guess that added to our anx­i­ety lev­els a bit.
2

But, like I said, those have all passed now. As they were hap­pen­ing, I thought they’d linger much longer but they don’t even seem to phase me at all now. Things aren’t per­fect. My job demands even more of my atten­tion. There is a laun­dry list of things that need to be done in a new house. The dogs need walk­ing three times a day. Ains­ley is walk­ing now — which has cre­at­ed a host of new things to have to deal with. How­ev­er, none of it seems com­pli­cat­ed. All of it is won­der­ful­ly con­tained to us and our own abil­i­ties — not rely­ing on some per­son to con­sid­er pur­chas­ing our old house nor some under­writer to jug­gle all the dol­lar signs asso­ci­at­ed with our lives.

I’m exhaust­ed but I feel con­tent. It’s some­thing I haven’t felt in about a year now. I’m think I’m allow­ing myself to feel a lot things I’ve been sup­press­ing dur­ing all this. Being able to real­ly enjoy watch­ing Ains­ley learn and grow. The thrill of watch­ing our new home come togeth­er. Sad­ness of leav­ing our home in Rich­mond, which is now real­ly no longer ours. The bit­ter­sweet joy of open­ing a new chap­ter, but know­ing that the old one is closed. I miss our friends in Vir­ginia more than I have since we’ve been gone because now it feels final for this first time.

I don’t know that hav­ing all those feel­ings at once would be some­thing I could have dealt with, but I can say that drag­ging them out over the course of a year has been extreme­ly dif­fi­cult. We made it through it some­how, though. And I’m okay with all of it.

But, this roller coast­er ride of a year is now pret­ty much over. Here’s to even bet­ter thinks hap­pen­ing in 2009, minus all of the heartache and wor­ry­ing.Oh, and I almost for­got to men­tion one last bit of news: we’re going to have anoth­er baby in April. Good thing we got a big­ger place, huh?

  1. Ever found your­self think­ing rent­ing is throw­ing away your mon­ey? Imag­ine how it feels when you’ve bought a home — which every­one says is a sound invest­ment and not throw­ing away your mon­ey — only to learn you’ve pret­ty much been still throw­ing your mon­ey away. Rent­ing is pay­ing for shel­ter and is most def­i­nite­ly not throw­ing your mon­ey away. Sure you may not own any­thing at the end of it, but you also don’t have the strug­gle of ever hav­ing to sell the thing, either. []
  2. I should also point out that dur­ing all of this, I end­ed up hav­ing to pro­vide a pre­sen­ta­tion on some new soft­ware to beta testers for work. Putting togeth­er an hour-and-a-half pre­sen­ta­tion on soft­ware that isn’t even fin­ished also took up a large por­tion of my time, as you might well imag­ine. And though it got off to a very rocky start, I was pleased with the whole thing once it was done. It cer­tain­ly took my mind off all the oth­er issues going on around us. []

Bumbo Safety Mod

So Angela sends me a quick e‑mail note regard­ing a recall of our favorite lit­tle kids foam seat, the Bum­bo1. The recall is regard­ing the fact that sev­er­al chil­dren have been injured (some quite seri­ous­ly, I under­stand) top­pling out of the seat. Well, lit­tle tod­dlers being squirmy and all, they tend to do that. Espe­cial­ly just when mom or dad stepped away from the table and the lit­tle one gets bored.

…and they get bored in about two sec­onds, so this is easy to imag­ine and hard for me to place too much blame on the par­ents. We’re all only human.

For that mat­ter, I don’t blame Bum­bo, either. There’s a warn­ing on the back of each one. In red let­ters! It essen­tial­ly says that the Bum­bo should only be placed at floor lev­el and not on ele­vat­ed sur­faces. Appar­ent­ly, some lawyers (the nasty kind who see every­one as suable bank accounts and not human beings) got a hold of this and deter­mined that the warn­ing was­n’t clear enough and that the prod­uct need­ed to be recalledSeri­ous­ly, read the descrip­tion and rem­e­dy at the CSPC’s site. Fur­ther, tell me if there is some­thing I’m miss­ing here.

Bumbo Warning

Note: there’s no lead paint, no flam­ma­ble mate­ri­als, not even any mov­ing parts (the Bum­bo is one sol­id piece of foam, in case you did­n’t already know). And they’re recall­ing it because the warn­ing on it appar­ent­ly was­n’t big or sim­ple enough for peo­ple.

Frankly, I think this is going just a bit over­board. Fol­low the warm­ing label if you have any con­cerns or doubts. How­ev­er, I don’t see any rea­son why the Bum­bo is going to be a prob­lem to put on a table-top pro­vid­ed there is some more strict super­vi­sion. I’d hate it if Ains­ley got hurt, but that’s why we go out of our way to make sure she does­n’t go tum­bling off of things in gen­er­al, includ­ing Bum­bos. But, just to put this in per­spec­tive, 28 out of over 1,000,000 Bum­bos have result­ed in injuries from kids tak­ing a face-plate. That’s 0.0028 per­cent for the divi­sion­al­ly chal­lenged. Though I don’t have any hard num­bers, I’d be will­ing to bet a high­er per­cent­age have fall­en out of peo­ple’s hands.

Just in case you’re still wor­ried about your Bum­bo, here’s a solu­tion I came up with to help keep your child in the seat (though no word if the seat won’t go over with the espe­cial­ly roudy ones):

Bumbo Safety Mod

And just in case it needs say­ing, you take respon­si­bil­i­ty if you do this. Not me or Bum­bo. Of course, you could just buy the plas­tic food tray that would prob­a­bly accom­plish the same thing.

Also:

  1. Our friends Chris and Sal­ly first intro­duced us to the Bum­bo when their son, Mason, was using one. We’ve had sev­er­al oth­er friends since that have also expressed their love for the Bum­bo and it was one of the ear­ly gifts we received (as I recall, from C & S, even!). []

Baby Got Domain

Here’s a Yahoo! News arti­cle (via Life­hack­er) about the increase in infants with their own domain names, many of whom won’t be used for any­thing oth­er than a parked page for years. Per one par­ent “One of the cri­te­ria was, if we liked the name, the domain had to be avail­able.” I can’t say that this was actu­al­ly a require­ment for our daugh­ter; just that I’d have had to been more cre­ative in what domain name she did get.

July Has Thirty One Days

It’s been a long month that went by real­ly quick­ly. How­ev­er, I sus­pect in a cou­ple of weeks I’ll be long­ing for the good ‘ole days of July ’07. I know that I’ve com­plete­ly dropped the ball on writ­ing on this site this past month. I real­ly regret that as it’s only because way too much has been hap­pen­ing as opposed to just hav­ing noth­ing to talk about.

First of all, and most impor­tant­ly, Angela is doing fine. She is cur­rent­ly stay­ing the night in the hos­pi­tal, but there is no cause for alarm. Her blood pres­sure is a bit high and she has a cou­ple of oth­er signs of a very mild case of pre-eclamp­sia. Ains­ley is almost at full term, as of this Thurs­day (37–40 weeks is con­sid­ered full term) and the doc­tor has indi­cat­ed that she may be deliv­ered ear­ly, although not tech­ni­cal­ly pre-mature­ly, due to this con­di­tion (which goes away essen­tial­ly imme­di­ate­ly after giv­ing birth). While pre-eclamp­sia can be dan­ger­ous to both my girls, this case is not par­tic­u­lar­ly dan­ger­ous and we have a very easy fix: Ains­ley is sim­ply going to come ear­li­er than late August. Like I said, Angela is doing just fine and no one should be wor­ried at all; just excit­ed that our daugh­ter is com­ing a bit soon­er than expect­ed.

Angela has con­tin­ued to work, though she’s been instruct­ed by her doc­tor to not do any­thing else out­side of work, ever since she’s had the ele­vat­ed blood pres­sure (for a few weeks, now). This has led us to both make some sac­ri­fices around the house, as I’ve been work­ing a lot late­ly. That’s not gone over real­ly well with her, but she under­stands. Both mom and daugh­ter are doing well (I just left the hos­pi­tal where we could hear Ains­ley heart thump­ing away).

Okay, now that you’re up to speed on that sit­u­a­tion, I’ll explain why I’ve not been explain­ing all this soon­er. One of the oth­er two engi­neers at my office has moved to upstate New York to open a branch office for our com­pa­ny. This is real­ly excit­ing for him and it’s a great oppor­tu­ni­ty for him and the com­pa­ny. How­ev­er, this has increased my work load some­what. Add to this that the most com­pli­cat­ed build­ing struc­ture I’ve worked on to date is cur­rent­ly in it’s final stage of design, and you can under­stand why I’ve been work­ing a lot late­ly. For­tu­nate­ly, I work with some real­ly won­der­ful peo­ple who under­stand that when I need to go to the hos­pi­tal for Angela, I’m ful­ly expect­ed to drop every­thing. My boss is going on a week-long vaca­tion in a cou­ple of weeks and so our oth­er co-work­er has agreed to come back down from NY for sev­er­al days to help out dur­ing that time. Like I said, real­ly great peo­ple. So far, our clients have all been equal­ly under­stand­ing, as well.

It’s cur­rent­ly rain­ing and thun­der­ing like mad out­side the house right now, which is fine because I’m not real­ly con­cern­ing myself with water­ing the poor, neglect­ed lawn these days. I’m lucky to find time to come home and show the dogs some atten­tion. It’s going to be like this for a while, I’m afraid. I’ll try and make some time to keep every­one post­ed with what is hap­pen­ing in the future, though. Cer­tain­ly, you’ll all know when Ains­ley arrives.

The Number Two Most Asked Question Right Now

When you dis­cov­er you’re hav­ing a child, the first thing that every­one asks is “do you know if it’s a boy or a girl?” I know we do. Pro­vid­ed you have an answer to that ques­tion, oth­er than “we’ve decid­ed to not know the sex of the child,” the next ques­tion is always “do you have a named picked out?” (Note, if you aren’t going to deter­mine the sex, our sec­ond ques­tion to you will be “why the hell not?”)

So it has been ever since we found out we were going to have a lit­tle girl. We’ve gone through at least two of those gigan­tic Baby Names books and Angela has said aloud prac­ti­cal­ly every name in them. We kept com­ing back to one name that real­ly sound­ed nice to the both of us. We could­n’t say exact­ly why; it just was one we both liked. It became the default name we would use as code between us instead of ‘baby.’ It sound­ed famil­iar, though not com­mon (nei­ther of us have ever known any­one with this name). It seems, to us, both fem­i­nine and strong. We’ve even got­ten to the point of short­en­ing it to first syl­la­ble, which is an accept­able nick­name for us.

I won’t lie to you and say it’s got­ten uni­ver­sal accep­tance, but I sup­pose more pos­i­tive than neg­a­tive. At least those who did­n’t care for it (at first; they’ll get over it once they see how cute she’s gonna be) liked her mid­dle name. None-the-less, we feel like it’s a good name and it’s the one we real­ized we liked. A lot. So, with­out any­more stalling, get used to…

Ains­ley Claire Cole­man

I say ‘get used to’ because she’ll be your pres­i­dent some­day. Whether that is before or after she stops glob­al warm­ing and dis­cov­ers a cure for most forms of can­cer is entire­ly up to her. No pres­sure, Ainse.

I wish I had a bet­ter answer to the third most asked ques­tion (“oh, where did that name come from?”) than ‘a char­ac­ter on a tele­vi­sion show we both loved,’ but there’s no sense in lying to any­one. Whether or not you liked that char­ac­ter (I know, a lik­able Repub­li­can lawyer. Who knew such peo­ple exist­ed?) or Emi­ly Proc­tor, the actress who played her, does not mat­ter. You will for­get them all togeth­er as soon as our lit­tle Ains­ley is born.

Oh, the last name was Ange­la’s deci­sion, just like it was always going to be as far as I was con­cerned. While I’m proud enough of my last name, I’m far more con­cerned with pass­ing on oth­er things to her.

Last­ly, I hope you’ll all keep up with her at her new web­site: AinsleyColeman.com

Five Fun Things Friday — Mid-June Edition

Okay, so this is turn­ing out to be more of a bi-week­ly thing than any­thing else. I don’t recall ever promis­ing any­thing — as who would I promise it to?

Five things that have been on my radar ‘o fun over the past cou­ple of weeks:

  1. This is a great music video by a for­mer­ly-not-known-to-me Brit indie Bats for Lash­es. I like the kind of creepy, haunt­ing sound of the song which match­es per­fect­ly the Don­nie Darko inspired video imagery (via Boing­Bo­ing).
  2. Angela and I have been watch­ing Judd Apa­tow’s “Unde­clared” via Net­flix. It’s not near­ly as good as “Freaks and Geeks” but still bet­ter than your aver­age com­e­dy. Most of this, by Apa­tow’s descrip­tion is due to the fact that the real­ly good stuff that goes on at col­lege can’t be shown on net­work tele­vi­sion. True, that. Any­one want­i­ng to go see Knocked Up, please give me a call.
  3. Last night, we went to see Son Volt at Lewis Gin­ter Botan­i­cal Gar­dens. Last week was Big Head Todd & the Mon­sters. Two real­ly good bands. Frankly, I did­n’t have too high of hopes for the Son Volt show as the “reunion” of that band feels a lot like Jay Far­rar cash­ing in on the rel­a­tive suc­cess of the band as com­pared to his solo career (espe­cial­ly last mon­th’s new album, which I found dis­ap­point­ing). How­ev­er, I real­ly like Far­rar’s songs, be they Son Volt, solo career, or Uncle Tupe­lo – all of which got some play-time last night.
    Uncle Tupelo Cover
  4. Per every­one-I-know’s rec­om­men­da­tions, I read the late Kurt Von­negut, Jr.‘s “Slaugh­ter­house Five” recent­ly. Well, after hav­ing read the book, of course the next thing to do is see the movie (no, not real­ly – I think it’s a shame that the gen­er­al notion seems to be that the high­est sta­tus a nov­el can have is to be made into a film). So last week­end, I watched the 1972 movie based on the book. I was fair­ly pleased with how it got por­trayed and appar­ent­ly, Von­negut was, too.
  5. Last, but prob­a­bly the most impor­tant, Angela and I real­ly enjoyed the baby show­er our friends Hol­ly and Meg threw for us at also-friend Jes­si­ca’s house. It was great and we were sim­ply amazed at how gen­er­ous our friends are. We clear­ly have no idea what we’re doing with this whole baby thing (appar­ent­ly just like every­one else, knowl­edge that has kept us going). How­ev­er, in addi­tion to the real­ly great gifts that every­one went out of their way to get us (and mail us, too!), hav­ing peo­ple to count on is a big deal. Thanks, every­one.

Five Fun Things: Week of May 10th

Here’s a list of Five Fun Things I’ve been enjoy­ing late­ly, in no sig­nif­i­cant order (oth­er than No. 1):

  1. Feel­ing our baby girl kick for the first time last Sun­day morn­ing. That was awe­some.
  2. Super Paper Mario on the Wii – Not a very hard game, but loads of fun to play and very fun­ny, too.
  3. LostLast night’s episode was proof they haven’t ‘lost’ it. Pick­ing an end date means they’ll have a def­i­nite road map for the rest of the show to keep it great, unlike ear­li­er this year when it seemed to be flop­ping. (Watch it on ABC’s site) Heroes owes a lot to Lost, and has real­ly been build­ing up to a great sea­son finale. Both have been fill­ing the hole left in my heart when Sea­son 3 of BG end­ed.
  4. Pandora.com – All the recent news about the pos­si­bil­i­ty of los­ing Inter­net radio made me real­ize just how awe­some this site is.
  5. Freaks & Geeks from Net­flix. I wish I had caught this show when it was first aired, but I don’t think my watch­ing would have saved it for anoth­er sea­son.

So what about any of you? Leave a com­ment or post it on your own site (be sure to ping me, track­back or just leave a link if you do!).

New Bugaboo for the Size Conscious

An inter­est­ing new prod­uct from Buga­boo called the Bee (yes, a baby stroller). I still pre­fer the Frog, as it’s more ver­sa­tile. How­ev­er, I keep read­ing com­plaints about the size of the oth­er Buga­boos (as well as the cost, which is slight­ly more valid). Am I miss­ing some­thing, or is this still the same coun­try with peo­ple who sleep on Cal­i­for­nia King-sized mat­tress­es in their sub­ur­ban McMan­sions? Where soc­cer Moms dri­ve their two kids in Chevy Tahoes and peo­ple dri­ve solo, thir­ty minute com­mutes in Hum­mer H2s? But an aver­age-sized stroller is too big? That may be rea­son­able from a par­ent who dri­ves a Mini and car­ries their child in a cloth sling, but hard­ly from the aver­age Amer­i­can par­ent who thinks an SUV is a require­ment of par­ent­hood. (via Dad­dy­Types)