Poem – Morning Routine 3

Morning light

Cascades across my face

Shades of blue, line the horizon

Night is breaking

I stir


Lift my weary head

Baby wakes

Time to start the stay at home day

The other two can be found here: http://wp.me/p2kmxm-Mq

Poem and Haiku – Happy Mother’s Day!

A blessing from God

True love within her kind heart

Soul full of joy

I wrote this poem a while back and posted it to this blog last year around this time.  I thought I would re-post it in honor of this special day.  

How to describe a mom,


it may be too hard to do,

without leaving out,

too many things,

that are true.

For a mom is a blessing,

a true gift from God,

her patience and virtue,

is something,

you could never prod?


Haiku – To Sleep, Perchance to Purr

Your purring rhythm

Putting me to gentle sleep

After a long day

I wrote this last night – tired and ready for bed.  It is tough being a stay at home dad, taking care of my son, trying to write, keep up the house, stay in shape, blog, etc.  I even have, not one, but two, grandmothers close by who help me out a few times a week and I still get worn out.  Staying home is one of the toughest jobs I have ever had, but you know what, I love it.  This is the best job in the world – even on the toughest of days.  My hats off to anyone who has done this job or who is currently doing this job.  So rewarding.

By the way, more of a cat man than a dog man.  Just me.  They put me at ease.  How about you? Cat or dog person. Just leave me your answer and a why attached to it.

Poem – Morning Routine 2

The monitor speaks

Static sounds wake me from dreams

My son is stirring

Wee hours or so it seems

I shuffle, zombie like

Sleep escaping, like a blast

Nursery door creaks open

Night, fading fast

I move to the crib

Peer over its edge

I watch his movement

Just beyond the ledge

His eyes scan mine

We bridge a gap, father to son

He smiles up at me

The morning has begun

Part 1 to this series:


Question: What are your feeding schedules for your child?

Our little one is between 4 and 5 months of age.  He is now moving up to solids with squash, carrots, and green beans already being a hit.  We do give him some oatmeal and rice cereal, which is also pretty popular, but he does love his vegetables.  We plan to introduce fruit a little later on, once he gets a little more used to his vegetables and fortified cereals. I know sweet potatoes are like candy to babies so we plan to introduce it really late.

This is where I am having a problem.  How do you introduce solids so he can still get his normal amount of formula?  Do you feed him his formula first and then wait an hour to do solids?  Do you do a little less formula and then try to add more solids?  I know formula is still his man staple of food and that solids are more of an introduction right now, but how do you get him to eat his solids.  My son seems to do better later on in the day, but he should be able to do some Oatmeal in the morning.

Anyone out there have any advice?  How did you handle this situation?  What are your current schedules if you have a child this age?  First time parent just needing some help.


Poem – Morning Routine

. . . Baby wakes

My heavy eye lids,

pushed open with the sound

Trudge down the stairs

Dry thirst in my throat,

from the long night’s sleep

Wife wakes,

stumbles like a zombie out of bed,

follows my created footsteps,

to the nursery

Baby’s eyes meet the day







Diaper change







Stomach full

Time for play

Time for sleep


peaceful dreams


Baby wakes . . .

Haiku – Sleep Island

Where ‘s the place you sleep?

Between the baby’s feedings

 Quite, warm – Sleep Island

I’ve started to notice that in between the baby feeding that there are these little magical pockets of time.  This is the time when he sleeps, usually an hour or three.  I have been calling these little pockets of time sleep islands.

Thoughts on Fatherhood

What a week and those three words believe me are an understatement.

I have had so many things running through my head since the birth of my son on Monday morning that I just want to write some of them down.

Let’s get started.

First off: sleep.

I honestly had no idea how bad it was going to be.  I thought I could handle it since I don’t sleep that much, but I am here to tell you this, I was mistaken.  The lack of sleep as I write this at 3:20 A.M. is something you just don’t know anything about until you have a newborn to take care.  Feedings every two to three hours, crying and soothing, working off of his schedule, and diaper changes.  It all adds up to sleeping no more than a few hours in spurts.  Wednesday night my wife and I managed to get in a couple of good solid hours of sleep.  I’m talking uninterrupted didn’t wake up until it was time to feed him sleep.  We were staying at the local hospital birthing center and they have a nursery there.  When we needed just a bit of shut-eye we would send him on down there so we could sleep.  We didn’t do it that often because we couldn’t stand having him out of the room with us, but we were about to come home so we wanted to get all the sleep we could get while we had the help.  I can’t believe how quick you fall into a coma when you do get to put your head down.  It is also hard to wake up as well because your body just wants to stay in dream land.  When you do finally get up you find yourself just nodding off at random times and your body just tries to shut down any chance it can.  You also start hallucinating and seeing things that aren’t there.  I even sat up the first night after I swaddled him while my wife slept and just watched him to make sure he was okay.  I just couldn’t sleep while he slept.  This has gotten better over the last few days, but even now as he rests in his pack and play I keep checking on him.  I know he is fine and safe, but I just have to keep making sure.

Second: changing diapers.

So far so good for me.  My wife had a c-section so she is recovering from that which means I have to take over on diaper patrol until she heals.  It is just so much easier on her if I help out with this part of it.  Right now it hasn’t been too bad, but once he starts feeding regularly the diapers are going to become a real challenge.  I am glad I have the chance now to get used to it before he really challenges me.

Third: breast-feeding.

Who knew it was like this?  Who knew it was this frustrating to watch?  It should be easy, right, wrong.  It is supply and demand so starting out you have to work him into a feeding schedule.  This will tell the body how much milk to produce.  The more he feeds, the more he gets.  Sounds simple enough, but let me tell you, as a man, this is hard to watch my wife go through.  She just has so many little things she has to do in order to get him to latch on.  I’m not going into TMI territory here because I am sure all mothers have to go through this who breast feed.  Not only is it hard for her to go through, but my son as well.  He is hungry and trying to get his meal, but there just isn’t that much there.  He’s crying and she’s trying, but it just doesn’t work instantly.  It takes time.  They actually have lactation consultants that help you learn how to breast feed.  It is just that complicated and difficult a task to learn.  Of all the things I have seen so far breast-feeding has to be the most frustrating one of all.  I just don’t like seeing my wife and son struggle in such a way.

Fourth: swaddling.

When we were at the birthing center my son was swaddled with blankets, binding him tight like he was in the womb.  It was always perfect when they brought him to us and it looked simple enough to do.  You see, I had to break this swaddle in order to change his diaper.  That meant I had to re-swaddle him myself and I learned quickly that I stink at swaddling.  I was always worried the blankets yes there were two of them would come loose and cause him harm.

Fifth: support.

I can’t tell you how much we have been blessed with my parents and my wife’s parents being able to help us out in a moments notice.  It really does take the pressure off when you just need a nap, a shower, or a bite to eat.  Our Douala birthing coach has also been in our corner and her advice is greatly appreciated.  I also have to give a shout out to Wake Med Cary’s Birthing Center – awesome place to give birth.  They were great in their care, time, and attention.

I know some of this above may make it sound like becoming a parent is a chore to go through, but it really isn’t.  Just to see him and to have him in my life makes it all worth it.  I can’t tell you how I felt when I heard his first cry in the delivery room or  I saw him for the first time.  It is just something I will never forget and tonight as I approach what day is this? the end of this great week I know I wouldn’t change a thing.  I am hooked on being a dad and I am looking forward to the challenges each day of his life brings.

8:11 A.M.

That’s right folks my son was born this morning, September 17, 2012 at the time listed above.  He weighed 10 pounds and 8 ounces and he came via a c-section.

Mom and baby are doing well after the birth this morning.

I tell you what folks.  This is one of the greatest events of my entire lifetime.  I couldn’t believe it when I heard his first cries and I saw him for the first time.

This is just an amazing day.

Week 39

Well folks the big day is almost upon us.  If all goes according to plan the c-section should be on Monday morning. I can’t believe all of our planning and prepping has come down to this.  I can’t believe we are so close to welcoming our son into the world.  I can’t believe so many things right now.  Just keep us in your hearts and prayers as we move on to this next phase of our life.  It will be challenging and it will be fun.  I honestly can’t wait to get started on it.

Here are some pictures of the nursery and all the stuff we have received.  A special thank you goes out to all those who have helped us along the way, either through gifts, support or both.  It is appreciated.

By the way.  I put together a lot of stuff and this turned out to be the hardest piece of all.  I can’t believe what it took to get it assembled.


Your Baby (replace the she for he)

One uncomfortable complaint of late pregnancy is frequent hiccups. No, not you, your baby. Because there is no air around your baby, when she practices breathing, it can cause amniotic fluid to get into her windpipe, resulting in those regularly spaced thumps that make you think you’re carrying a jumping bean in your belly. Other news this week:

The lanugo (an exotic word for soft, downy hair) that used to cover your baby’s body has mostly disappeared, but you may find a bit leftover on the shoulders, forehead and neck. Don’t freak and think you’ve given birth to a monkey: It’ll fall out soon.

The color of baby’s skin is changing from a red-pink hue to a white or blue-pink color (even in babes with dark skin). These changes are due to the amount of fat your little pudger is putting on. The circumference of your baby’s head and abdomen are about the same size now (though you may not be able to tell if your baby’s born with the common cone-shaped head!).

The placenta is lending your Mini antibodies that’ll keep him strong and healthy after birth. That said, it’s still a good idea to invest in that mega-size bottle of hand sanitizer.

At this point your little critter is about 19 to 20 inches long and weights about 7 pounds. That’s just around the size of a large rabbit. What’s up Doc?

39 Weeks Pregnant

via 39 Weeks Pregnant – 3D Pregnancy Calendar

Week 38

Well today (Saturday) we have the fourth and last baby shower before the baby is born.  We have been talking about a possible C-Section and yesterday (Friday) we found out that it was necessary.  The baby is measuring very large and he is currently sideways so that made our decision with getting the C-Section a lot easier.  We really had no choice.  It wasn’t a want to or not want to, but a have to.  We scheduled it for Monday the 17th of September.

Keep mom to be and baby to be in your hearts and prayers as we move on to this very important date – which I know is one of the biggest of my lifetime and mom to be’s lifetime.

That’s it for the week.

Your Baby

Your baby’s intestines have accumulated a considerable amount of meconium (the code name for black, tar-like baby poop), which is usually eliminated shortly after birth and gives you your first experience with the 100-wipe diaper change. Here’s what else is up:

Your baby might just scratch herself in the womb as the fingernails have grown over the fingertips now. Resist painting them hot pink when she arrives.

Baby’s lungs continue to mature and her brain and nerve function are working better every day. The latter two will continue to mature until Junior is a teenager, at which point she’ll know it all (or at least she’ll think she does).

Your baby weighs about 6½ pounds and is around 19 or 20 inches long—as long as a duffle bag (in case you needed an excuse to go shopping for a new bag for your labor gear).

via 38 Weeks Pregnant – 3D Pregnancy Calendar

Week 36

Your Baby

Your baby continues to put on weight at about ½ pound each week. This layer of fat will help your baby regulate his body temperature after leaving your climate-controlled womb. In fact, your baby will be 15 percent fat at birth (and you … well that’s another story). Even in the womb, your baby can listen, feel, touch and see. The only thing separating him from living in the outside world is a little thing called the birth canal. Other highlights this week:

His gums are firm with ridges that look somewhat like teeth, though his actual pearly whites won’t start breaking through until he’s between three months and a year old.

Your baby has definite patterns of sleep and wakefulness—opening his eyes while awake and closing them while sleeping. Your baby will become alert and turn his head toward light and sound just as a newborn would—except when you put on that Celine Dion CD. Then the baby puts his hands up, turns away and gurgles, “Oh no you didn’t!”

Your baby is now around 18½ inches long and nearly 6 pounds—just about as big as a breadbox!

via 36 Weeks Pregnant – 3D Pregnancy Calendar


Another pretty tough week, but we got through it.

We’ve learned of a new glucose test this week, the two-hour one.  Mom to be has had the one hour test, the three-hour test, and now the two-hour test.  What is the two-hour test you may ask?  Basically mom to be fasts from midnight until her appointment.  Then she goes to the lab and has her blood drawn.  We then go home and mom to be has what she normally has for breakfast.  When she takes that last bite of breakfast the clock starts ticking.  Two hours from the last bite we must be back at the lab in order for mom to be to get more blood drawn (no results as of today – Thursday).  So mom to be has now been through all three glucose tests and handled them like a star.  I am proud of her.

Mom to be is experiencing swelling in her legs so any mothers out there who have advice on how to correct it, we would be more than happy to listen to it.  Epsom Salt baths and cucumber water has helped so far, but nothing beats staying home and resting.  When mom to be has the time to just rest with her feet elevated her legs seem to respond well to that.

I guess that is it for this week.

Week 35

Long week – two words put together never meant so much.

First off.  We started off the week one car short.  I had to take mom to be to work each morning while we waited to get her car fixed.  By Friday the car should be fixed (I am writing this as of Thursday).

Then when we went to the doctor for mom to be’s checkup we were told on Tuesday that we needed to come back by Thursday in order to get a growth ultra-sound.  Mom to be was retaining a lot of water so they wanted to make sure baby to be was okay.  So from Tuesday till Thursday we were in a holding pattern and waiting to see why she was retaining so much water.  The mid-wife also put mom to be on bed rest for a couple of days to see if that would help.  It did and after our second checkup we learned that everything was pretty much okay, for now.  Baby to be is a big one – they weighed him at about seven and a half pounds (of course ultra-sounds are not always accurate, he could be this weight or smaller).  That’s at 35 weeks which I am finding out (being a man we don’t know these things) is big for a baby at this stage in the pregnancy.  Another check up next week, and another day of bed rest for mom to be on Friday.

Tonight (Thursday) we are scheduled for a tour of the hospital so we can get a feel for everything we may need the day of the birth.  That should help a lot.

Then on Saturday and Sunday we have what they are calling intensive child-birth classes.  Saturday goes from 9-4 and Sunday 9-1.

That’s it so far.  We are hoping and praying all goes well for the rest of the pregnancy.

As of writing the information above I have since been to the Birthing Center and the first day of the intensive child-birth classes.  

First off, the birthing center is super nice.  The rooms are almost like hotel rooms with beds that can be contorted to fit any kind of pregnancy position, just so mom to be can deliver as comfortable as possible.  They have all the amenities there as well, including a birthing ball, birthing tub, a refrigerator in the room for cold snacks, and various other things that will help with the before and after birthing process.  

The first day of intensive child-birth classes went off exceptionally well with a lot of useful information for dad and mom to be.  We thought we were well versed, but we learned even more stuff on Saturday.  On Sunday we will be there for a shorter period.  So the day won’t be so tough.  Mom to be is currently resting as I write this after Saturday’s session.  

I’ve included two things this week from the 3D pregnancy website.  The first is what mom to be’s body is going through – Your Body and the second is all about baby to be – Your Baby.  I thought this might give you a little more insight into what is going on with mom and baby to be.

35 Weeks Pregnant

Your Body

As Patrick Swayze put it, “Nobody puts baby in a corner!” Doubly true for your little tenant. Your baby has pretty much taken over your entire torso by now. Over the past few months, he’s squished and mushed all of your organs out of the way. Any day now, he’ll make a final move and shove your heart up and to the left to make more room for himself. (See, he’s got your heart in his hands already.)

Before all this pregnancy stuff, your uterus was a small ball the size of your fist and was tucked neatly away behind your pelvis. Today your uterus is the size of a small watermelon and reaches all the way up to your ribs.

At this point in your pregnancy all the blood has gone to your belly … literally. Nearly 1/6 of your body’s total blood volume is chugging around in the vessels in your uterus. So that’s why you feel so lightheaded all the time!

Starting this week you’ll visit your OB or midwife weekly. Every time you go you’ll probably beg her to tell you when she thinks your babe is coming. Unfortunately, her guess is about as good as yours. Even if you’re dilated, there’s no telling exactly when baby will make his appearance (unless you have a scheduled C-section, of course.)

Your Baby

This week the final touches are being added to your mini-masterpiece and most of his development is going to packing on the pounds. While baby’s movements may be becoming less jerky, he may do his final somersault in the womb soon—to put himself into the head-down position for birth. Other fascinating facts:

Your little Karate Kid can’t quite pack the punch he used to due to the limited space inside the womb these days. You’re likely to feel more wiggles, stretches and rolls than kicks and jabs. The extra layer of fat your baby is adding will create those cute dimples on your baby’s elbows and knees. His liver has begun processing his waste products, so you know which organ to thank when he has his first blowout up the back of his onesie.

Baby’s nails are growing so long they may curl over the tips of his tiny fingers and toes before he sees a pair of clippers. He’ll be in serious need of a mani-pedi once he’s born (as will you).

Your baby is now about 5½ pounds and over 18 inches long—about the size of one of those price-club sheet cakes.

via 35 Weeks Pregnant – 3D Pregnancy Calendar

Your thoughts.

Week 34

Babymoon 2

It has been nice getting away for a few days.  We’ve been fortunate enough to be able to have not only one, but two Babymoons this year.

The first one was at the beach and though it was relaxing, it wasn’t anything compared to what we have been experiencing in the mountains this week – colder weather or cooler weather I should say.  We haven’t had the air conditioning on at all since we got here.  The windows stay open all the time.  I can even sit on the deck in the afternoon and not die of a heat stroke.  Right now (Wednesday morning) I am sitting out on the deck in long pants, socks, and a tee-shirt.  Folks, I might just need to go grab a long sleeve until the sun comes up.  With the breeze it is down right chilly – fall like.

How has the trip been?  Mom to be has done a lot of relaxing, including a pedicure.  I am so happy to see that.  She needs it.  Baby to be seems to be enjoying the weather as well.  He’s been very active this week.  Two more full days left after today and then back to the heat of home.  Maybe the hot spell will have broken just a bit before we get back.

We didn’t go to the West Virginia mountains, just the Carolina ones.  This song seemed to fit the moment though.


(replace the she for he) Your baby kind of looks like she’s coated in a layer of cream cheese these days. The thick, white substance that protects her skin from pruning in the amniotic fluid is called vernix. When she’s born you’ll probably see some vernix lingering in her “hard-to-reach” places like under her arms, behind her ears and around her va-jay-jay, if she’s a she.. Other news from the womb this week:

The soft fur, lanugo, that covered your baby’s body for much of her stay in the womb is now almost completely gone. Your baby begins to develop her own immune system, instead of relying solely on antibodies received through the placenta. This will come in handy when some grubby relative manhandles the baby without washing his hands first.

This week, your baby measures about 17¾ inches, as almost as long as an American Girl Doll (!) and weighs almost 5 pounds, as heavy as a bag of sugar, minus the cup you put in your decaf this morning.

via 34 Weeks Pregnant – 3D Pregnancy Calendar

Yes my wife is pregnant, quit asking!

There is a trend that I am starting to notice when my wife (who is now 8 months pregnant) is out in public.   People always stop and comment on her belly.  Complete strangers just walk up and start talking to her about it.  I understand the curiosity factor, but people need to lay off.  I don’t mind family or friends saying things – don’t get me wrong there.  They are close to us and they know us, so we know how we are with each other.

I just can’t believe how rude complete strangers can be to her.  I don’t think they mean to, but would you walk up to an obese person and comment on their belly?  Of course not.  So why is it okay to comment on my wife’s belly?  I just don’t get it.

I don’t mind if someone comes up and asks if it is a boy or a girl, when is he due, etc.  Just don’t talk about how big she is or how big your daughter wasn’t when she was 8 months along or how huge she is for 8 months.  Use common sense and be courteous to her.

Recently, some random stranger just walked up and asked about her belly.  He didn’t say hello, didn’t say congratulations first.  He just went into some diatribe about how big she is and how she must be due soon.  It made her very uncomfortable.  I know he meant well and that his heart was in the right place, but take a clue.  Just leave her alone.

I guess the human animal has a certain curiosity about pregnant bellies.  I see people all the time looking at her with a little half-smile and I wonder what they are thinking.

We did have a cute moment in the park a few days ago.  A little girl walked by and pointed at my wife’s belly.  Her mom was embarrassed and explained to her that it is rude to point, and then told her to ask if there is a baby in my wife’s belly.  The little girl asked very sweetly, my wife invited her to touch her belly, and the mom was very thankful and apologetic.  Then the mom explained to the little girl something about a baby inside my wife and they moved on.

See, that’s the way you do it.  I wish more people would learn the proper etiquette when it comes to approaching a pregnant woman.