Setting up the baby’s room

Originally uploaded by thetejon

We just finished round one of setting up the baby’s room. Pictures are here. We had “Before” pictures, as well, but we’re having memory card problems. Hopefully we’ll recover them eventually. The wife did a ton of work on this. I did some work, but, as usual, she did the bulk of it. The dresser is mine, which we recently replaced. It came with bunk beds my grandmother bought for me when I was 10 years old or so. We painted it with leftover paint from the rest of the house, and it looks pretty awesome (Even better in person). The room is pretty awesome. It’s loud and vibrant, and gender-neutral without being pastel green and yellow. We’ve moved the futon out into the sun room. I’m not sure how we’ll like it there. So far the cat seems okay with it, so there’s that. And I’m not sure how houseguests will like it. We’ve had tons of people stay with us since we moved in, and now we don’t have a guest room anymore. Only six weeks or so, and the baby will be here. And now it has a place to sleep.

Over before it began

The wife got me a big stack of baby books for Father’s Day. It was a great gift, as I’m already looking forward to reading to the kid when it’s born. In fact, we’ve already started reading to it a little bit before bed. Apparently babies are often calmed by hearing books that they first heard before they were born. One of these books is Where Is Baby’s Belly Button? by Karent Katz. The editorial on Amazon is glowing – “Karen Katz’s adorable babies play peekaboo in this delightful interactive book. The sturdy format and easy-to-lift flaps are perfect for parents and children to share.” Sounds great! Until you look at the cover. Ms. Katz has begun her suspenseful mystery story with one unanswered question – where is Baby’s belly button? But on the FRONT COVER of the book, we clearly see Baby with her shirt pulled up, exposing the missing belly button! Never mind the horrible lessons we’re teaching young girls about lifting their shirts in public. I’ve solved the mystery before I even open the book! Ms. Katz tries to pretend that we’re all stupid, and waits until page six to once again reveal the location of the belly button. At the mere halfway point in the book, we’ve twice revealed the culprit. What if the cover of The Sixth Sense was a picture of Bruce Willis, dead? And then an hour into the movie, we watch him die? That is the sort of nonsense that Ms. Katz thinks we’re looking for in a baby book. She tries to arouse our curiosity with other mysteries – where are baby’s feet? Where are baby’s hands? But I have to admit that I found these questions empty. Once the belly button had made its premature appearance, the rest of the story couldn’t hold my attention, and I quickly put it down.

Hooray for placenta migration!

Just got back from our final sonogram appointment. The wife’s placenta, which was too close to the cervix at the last appointment, has migrated into a perfectly normal spot. Had it not moved, we would have had to schedule a C-section, which we really didn’t want. I mean, sure, if it’s the choice between C-section and serious danger to mother or child, we’ll take the C-section. Anyway, we’re both quite pleased. Her more than me, I imagine, since she’s the one who would have had her stomach cut open.

Birthing Class

We went to our second birthing class today. I continue to feel ridiculous carrying a pillow down Columbia Road. Last week, someone wanted to buy the pillows from us. This week someone asked us if we were on our way to a pillow fight. He did congratulate us when I told him why we were carrying them, so there’s that, but still. Class today was about nutrition. It was a lot of stuff we already knew, and the wife is already doing most of the things that the instructor recommended, but it’s nice to get the reinforcement. The solo husbands from last week both brought wives this time. I imagine the class is more interesting with a partner.

Family tree building

Main Page – GRAMPS

GRAMPS is a Free Software Project for Genealogy, offering a professional genealogy program, and a wiki open to all. It is a community project, created, developed and governed by genealogists.

I’ve been trying to collect some family names in preparation for the baby. The wife and I wouldn’t mind using a family name for the baby if we can find one we like, so we’re trying to find one we like. A cousin of my grandmother gave her a copy of the Wolman family tree (My maternal grandmother’s maiden name is Wolman). And I spent most of yesterday evening entering it into GRAMPS, the above-linked genealogy program. It’s really just a graphical front end for some sort of custom database, it seems, but it’s a pretty cool product for creating a family tree. There are websites that let you do it, but they seem to want money. But since this program was developed for Linux (and is included in the Ubuntu packages, for those using Ubuntu), it’s free. I think the final count when I finished last night was 388 people in the tree. Some of them are unnamed, and there were a few guesses where the writing got cut off when it was photocopied. But it’s a pretty extensive picture of that part of the family. My next goal is to get something similar on my dad’s side, and then work on the wife’s family. And I’d like to get the important dates in – almost no one in the tree has a birth or a death date, and many of non-Wolmans don’t have last names. This is especially common for women who married in and stopped using their maiden names, and I imagine many genealogists have this problem. But it’s kind of fun to find out all this stuff. Even if we don’t find a name for the kid, I’d be happy with just having a big family tree to pass along.