Tuesday, August 30, 2005

"How about tomorrow?"

We went to see Dr. P. this morning. We asked if he could induce labor on Monday. We were kidding.

He examined Tina and then asked, sort of out of the blue, whether we wanted to have the baby tomorrow. He was serious.

Everybody's fine and there's no health issue. He was just thinking about our convenience. The baby's big (8 1/2 pounds) and gaining about a pound a week, so he was thinking the sooner we deliver, the easier it will be. Which makes sense.

Unfortunately, tomorrow isn't convenient at all. My 3rd-year paper presentation (which was supposed to be in April, but that's a whole 'nother story) is on Friday, and I practice tomorrow. So inducing tomorrow doesn't help.

Our current plan is to induce on the 8th. The doc is out of town for the weekend and we'd all rather not induce when he's not around. So at least we know we're going early.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005


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Ask and ye shall receive

I guess somebody heard my whining about not getting my comps graded, because I got an email yesterday saying that all of us who took them passed. So that's good news. Now I just have to write a dissertation and I'll be done.

No big deal, right?

Sunday, August 21, 2005


Apparently one of the guys grading the comps is on vacation and will be back this week. So I have no idea when I'll find out if I passed. I asked for partial feedback - my grade on the part not being graded by that guy. But nothing yet. The funny thing is, I don't know if that guy even realizes he's supposed to grade it. He didn't know on the day of the comps.

Not that I'm all that worried. But I took it almost 3 weeks ago. It's getting stale by now. Oh well, whaddaya gonna do?

Digital pics

FYI, that digital pic of Tina was taken with our new Sony DVD handycam. The still picture quality isn't up to that of our Olympus D-520 Zoom, but it's passable. The video quality is really good, as is sound quality. It records in 5.1-channel surround sound. There's nothing I own that plays back in surround sound, so it's a bit of overkill...but it works. And it's very easy to use.

The Olympus takes good enough pictures for me. It's a bit finicky about when it takes them, and it seems to leave the shutter open for a while, so I take some blurry photos. But otherwise it's pretty good. It's a few years old, though, so there's probably something better on the market by now.

If you want digital photo software, I like Picasa. It's free from Google and has all the cool features you like on a digital photo program. (I get nothing for saying this, just trying to be helpful.) It tries to link to another program called, stupidly enough, "Hello," for putting pics up on blogs. But Blogger now has an easy "upload photos" feature, so just use Picasa for what it is.

Car seat

We had to buy a new car seat. We'd gotten an infant seat/carrier from Kathy, but the seat was pretty old (like 8 years) and was past the mfr's warranty. And we were going to have to buy a convertible seat soon anyway, so we went ahead and just bought the convertible seat. We got an Evenflo Triumph DLX, which has a cool leathery-suedey finish and pretty yellow knobs. That's how you can tell the quality - from the color of the knobs.

Actually, it gets pretty high marks from users on Amazon. Some people found it hard to use, because they're not very bright. (Just kidding.) Actually, the harness-adjusting knobs are a bit unique and were a little hard to figure out in the store - but once we figured it out I think it was fine. Plus, we'll have plenty of room in the momi-van to fight with the thing. At $130, it was a pretty reasonable deal - at least, compared to the rest of the market. I still want to know how much of the price of kiddie accessories is liability insurance. It has to be at least half. Seriously. It's some padded plastic with a seat belt, and it's over a hundred bucks? C'mon.

The downside of buying the convertible seat for the car now is that we'll have to unstrap the kid when we get him somewhere and dump him into the carrier or stroller, rather than using the infant seat as both a car seat and carrier. We coulda dropped another $100 for an infant seat that attaches right to the stroller. Maybe for the next kid, when convenience will be at more of a premium and the budget won't be so tight, we can do those things. For now, we'll just rough it like people have done for thousands of years.

Mommie update

Well, even if the doggie isn't sick (see post below), the Mommie is. We didn't make it to church this morning because somebody's tummy wudn't feewing vewy good.

Mostly we're OK...the 157-pound baby (see earlier post) is putting lotsa pressure on Tina's already-fragile digestion. So we've compensated by putting her on a strict diet of cheeseburgers. (I ain't kidding. Well, I'm exagerating a bit, but I think she's had a cheeseburger almost every day since like 1986 or something.)

I'm mostly waiting to give a presentation (on Sept. 2) and just kinda biding time.

We have the baby's room mostly done. Here's a pic of Tina and the crib with the really cool quilt her ma made, hanging up on the wall. Those are barnyard-themed quilt hanging clips, from the Toy House, which claims to be the largest independent toy store in the country. Right here in Jackson. Pretty cool place.

Doggie update

The dog's been fine. No pukie in the mornings, which makes my mornings brighter. And less pukier.

I'm wondering if the source of the problem was something we hadn't considered. I had to slay a mightly little beastie in the kitchen the other day...who may have been bringing some disease to the dog. I have to ask the vet about that. (By the way, I found that pic on the web...I didn't take it.) If anyone wants a good mouse trap, try the Rat Zapper. It works. Thanks to Alex for letting me borrow his.

Snickers' new veggie diet seems to be working, and when I reach in the bag to feed her, I get a whiff of what's actually a pretty pleasant smell - sort of like toasted cucumber, if you can imagine that.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Whee-doggies! Tha's a big 'un!

Tina went to Dr. P's office today for a routine checkup. Two items of note (well, one item of note that shows up in two ways):

First, she's measuring about a week early.

Second, the good doc estimates that the baby weighs 7 pounds. There are still over three weeks until the due date. And two weeks ago the baby was 4 pounds. So either the kid will stop growing or we'll have a 15-pound, three-foot tall baby. (Cue the World Weekly News here.)

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Animal names

I'm not sure I can in good conscience name anything, even something imaginary, Michael-ange-doodle-doo.

Leonardo Da Piggi might work. It's too bad Ottorino Respighi isn't better known, because naming the swine after him is a bit smoother. I guess I'll go with Ottorino Respiggi. Leonardo's already represented by the Moo-na Lisa, and this way we get a 20th century composer in the mix, too.

The rooster, I think, will be Papa Haydn and the chicks can be Wolfgang, Ludwig and Ignatz, for Mozart, Beethoven and Ignatz Pleyel, all students of Haydn's. (I never heard of Pleyel, but I like "Ignatz.") Since we have a ready-made Papa from the world of classical music, might as well use him, eh?

So that's it: Moo-na Lisa, Ottorino Respiggi, Johann Sebastian Baa-ch, and Papa, Wolfie, Ludwig and Ignatz.

Prizes for the winners to be determined later. Thanks for playing! (or Pleyel-ing, if you're Ignatz.)

Doggie update

The dog started her vomiting again, so she's back on antibiotics (for a month, not just 2 weeks this time) and is on a "novel protein" diet. The vet at Michigan State recommended Eukanuba Response KO, the K and O standing in for "Kangaroo" and "Oat." Indeedy.

Apparently, the idea is that poor Snicks may have developed an allergy to something in the Iams she's been eating for, oh, about 8 years, two meals a day...lotsa Iams. I guess (this is news to me) it's not uncommon for dogs who eat the same thing for all that long to get allergies somehow. So, if she has indeed developed an allergy, we need to get her eating something that's not in the food she's allergic to. And, to be sure, there's no kangaroo in Iams Weight Control Large Breed.

I didn't really need to pay over $2 a pound for dog food (Meijer usually has steak on sale for less than that!) just to get her on something "novel." So I'm trying Nature's Recipe Vegetarian food, for under a buck a lb. I got a free sample from Pet Supplies Plus of a different veggie blend, and the dog just loved it. So I went with the Nature's Recipe. I gave her her meds in a bit of the canned variety and she went nutso, even moreso than she did for the canned Iams she got her pills in last time. So I'm guessing she likes the veggie diet. Unfortunately, now she'll probably start voting Democrat and wearing hemp or something. I never trust vegetarians. It's just not natural not to eat meat.

OK, sorry again

I know I haven't posted much. I haven't had much to say. Tina's still getting by, still not sleeping well, still drinking lots of water and (lately) lots of chocolate milk.

We have our new video camera (thanks Dad!) and we'll have movies available somehow. Plus photos too. That is, when there's something to make movies and photos of.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Comps are done!

Well, my comprehensive exams are done (for now, that is...I won't know if I actually passed for a week or so, when the faculty gets back from a conference.). That means I can now devote almost all my time to making ready for the baby.

Wait...we're ready. Well, almost. I should probably start getting some stuff together for our trip to the hospital, and I need to hang the quilt on the wall still. And sleep. More posts as things happen, and after I sleep.

For now, all's well. Tina hasn't gained any weight in a month or so, but the baby is growing, so Doc isn't worried.

Gatorade is out. Chocolate milk still in.

Garlic is out. Sour candy is in.

Steak and pot roast are still in. Fish is out.

No-puke pills still de rigueur. (Why am I using French words? I guess today I'm a haughty Vietnam vet who also happens to be a junior Senator from Taxachusetts.)