Known Johnson

February 1, 2009

Twin girls, three years apart

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 11:31 am

Danielle at 2 months, at left, and Amanda at about 45 days, at right. Pretty weird, huh?

A happy girl 2005-10-15-033-s

January 1, 2009

Degonkulater plus

Filed under: Annoyances,Baby makes FOUR,General — Tom @ 9:58 pm

The Sick has descended upon our household. It wouldn’t be a major holiday season without disease. This time it’s a cold or some related type o’ bug, annoying, but not too disruptive. A couple of down days for Amanda and I, where we quarantined ourselves as best we could from the other two ladies, and things seem to be righting themselves again. Luckily it appears Alissa and tiny Danielle have eluded attack by rebel germs. Amanda and I, brave souls that we are, took the brunt of the attack for them, defending the household for them.

Speaking of Danielle, today she celebrated her first month birthday. Well, not really celebrated . . . we didn’t do anything in particular because I was still suffering from The Death for much of the day, but we noted it (“Hey, Danielle will be exactly a month old in a few minutes.”) You may note I haven’t said too much about her . . . I have found that I feel kind of weird saying too much. I feel a greater sense of privacy this time around and don’t feel appropriate posting everything about her life like I did with Amanda. I don’t know why, exactly. I’m just uncomfortable with it, perhaps because I do seem to have a much higher visit rate than ever before, and it seems weird to me to be talking about what is essentially very private stuff. It wasn’t so weird to talk about diapers and other weird issues when I knew who the 12 people who visited everyday were, but now that it’s 90, 100, sometimes 250 a day, it feels a little weirder broadcasting that stuff out to the world. As the saying goes, it’s not you, it’s me.

December 11, 2008

We’ve been a little busy . . .

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 2:29 pm

We’ve been home from the hospital for a week now, but I’ve had no time to sit down and write anything substantial about the whole experience. I can’t say that’s going to change at the moment, but I’m going to try later. I wanted to write a quick post and say that all is going very well, for those who were curious why the radio-silence.

We’ve got two beautiful little girls at home. For those of you with one child at home, contemplating another and worried about those rough first few weeks, the second time around is much easier. At least for us. Wow, what a difference experience makes. We’re “old pros” apparently, needing little intervention from the nurses in the hospital, and Danielle sleeps well at night at home, too. It’s been an amazingly simple week. Busy, but simple. Tiring, but simple.

You don’t know how many times I’ve been asked, “So, when are you trying for a boy?”

December 1, 2008

Introducing . . .

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 7:31 pm

Danielle Brooke, born at 8:31 am Dec. 1, 2008, weighing in at 8 lbs. 10 ounces and 21.25″ long.

Danielle Brooke

This was a strange morning, and I’m really tired, so I will keep this short – Alissa woke up at something like 4 am thinking she merely needed to pee, to which I just rolled over and started to go right back to sleep, but as soon as she was done, she felt the need again, and that’s when I got up and the thoughts started racing. It took a few minutes, and another trip to “not pee” before it really struck us that, indeed, her water had broken, albeit in a very modest and minimal way. Since Amanda arrived via an induced labor, this is all new to us, so what ensued was a subdued version of the kind of panic that you see in sitcoms, where the characters frantically try to throw everything together that they might need. And we didn’t. We hardly took anything with us, which is why I’m able to write you now – I’m home, here to gather some stuff to take back to the hospital. (I’ve got my Iphone with me, but no way am I trying to type that much with my thumbs.) And now it’s off to a quick shower, and a shave – I’ve got the George Michael/Kip Winger three-days stubble thing going on, and it’s so not happening on me.

On a side note, man, I forgot the amusing “arrival audio” that accompanies an infant diaper event. There’s no denying a newborn needs a diaper change when you hear that tiny cannon they pack go off.

Breaking news

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 5:32 am

A sign

4:32am: Water may have broken; off to the hospital we go . . .

(Watch my Flickr page for pics if I can’t update the site until I get back.)

November 18, 2008

What’s up?

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR,General,Ipod/Iphone — Tom @ 3:38 pm

It’s an adverb. But that’s beside the point. It’s been a while, and there’s been a lot going on. I’ll forget most of it as soon as I start typing.

If you’re not keeping tabs, in two weeks, we will someone be given access to another tiny little person who will, in the words of Amanda, our first tiny little person, “pop out” of Alissa’s stomach. And because I’ve been asked this a million times at work, yes, we actually finally have a name . . . but you’re going to have to wait a couple weeks to find that out.

Unless things change drastically, this tiny little lady will “pop out” in almost exactly two weeks. It seems she is breech and has chosen to stay that way. I’m not going to go into details, because they’re complicated and medically . . . stuff . . . but C-section is the way to go – no turning her around prior to birth. No worries, however, neither mother nor daughter are in any danger whatsoever. It’s just that things, as they are wont to do, got complicated, and she will be coming out “the other way.” Everyone is perfectly healthy.

Our Christmas tree is up. Yes, it’s early, but I’ve got to get the damned box out of the house so we can clean up before the baby arrives. Priorities . . . Hey, at least we waited to actually decorate it.

Speaking of decorating . . . with the economy the way it is, it looks like people really aren’t going to be out buying houses, so we’re going to have to settle in to dealing with our now over-small house for a while, which means I’ll be busy soon decorating our new resident’s room like I did Amanda’s three years ago. I had held off a while back because we had every intention of selling, but things just got worse and worse, and I think we’re just kind of stuck now for a while. I’m looking at it this way, however: how cute and irresistible to a young family is a house with two custom, hand-painted kids’ rooms? We’re just going to have to figure out how to deal with no storage, no space, etc. for far longer than we’d planned.

Now I know why they call it “commercial radio.” I installed a new CD player in my truck this weekend, one through which I can use both my Ipod and Iphone with one plug that also charges whichever is connected at the time (this is more difficult that it seems – Apple likes to change things up and screwed up car installs with the latest Iphones and Ipods) but also allows me to use USB flash drives, which is pretty neat-o. Anyway, I have been playing with Pandora internet radio on my Iphone the past few days and have to say it’s pretty great – very good sound quality, very good song choices, and free – and so have been taking my Ipod cable, used in my truck for sound, into work to charge while I listen. I went out at lunch today, grabbing my Ipod to listen while I drove . . . but forgot that cable. I was forced to listen to radio on the approximately 20 minutes of drive-time that I endured. Do you know how many songs I heard in that entire time? One full song, and one partial song. The rest of the time was commercials – most of them, strangely, for insurance or cars, two things I would think very few people are actually shopping for all that often. Oh, and beer. An interesting, possibly dangerous, mix, to be sure.

And, like I said, as soon as I started in on this, all my intended news would just go drizzling away. Such is life with my brain lately. I set out with good intentions, only to stand, confused, in the aisles of life’s grocery store, an empty cart before me, and no idea what I was there to put in it.

October 26, 2008

Family resemblance

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 3:53 pm

Tell me these two don’t look sisters, if not almost like twins . . .

Amanda, just hours after birth:

Amanda, day 1

And her as-yet-unnamed sister from an ultrasound a couple days ago:

 . . . and her sister, 6 weeks to go

The above 3D ultrasound was not intentional – it was just provided to us by a generous technician on Friday. It’s not perfect, either, as she was not cooperating and had her face “against the glass,” as the tech put it, so all that can be made out very well is the nose and mouth – but that’s more than enough to see how much she looks like Amanda did just hours after she was born. It was just thrilling to see our baby so clear and I can’t help but want to share. Six weeks . . . I can hardly believe it. We have so much to do . . .

July 13, 2008

It’s a . . .

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 8:51 am

No matter how interesting and engrossing you think something like an ultrasound of your upcoming child is, never underestimate the short attention span of a three year old. Within a few minutes of the scan starting, Amanda was growing bored, and it wasn’t long before she handed her stuffed dog to me and said, “Daddy, make my doggy talk.” I simply replied I was a little busy right now and we needed to be quiet, so she spent the rest of the scan shifting restlessly in her seat, asking what the blue light in the corner was, what the thing dangling from the ceiling was, what “that sound” was, hopping from her seat to my lap, asking again what the blue light was, asking again what the thing dangling from the ceiling was, pointing out the reflection of feet that appeared under the closed door . . . “What’s that sound?” “What’s that blue light?” Pretty much everything but the scan itself was interesting to her. She was bored. I guess at three years old, the mere implications of what you’re looking at are not enough to hold your interest. I can’t hold it against her. She is, you know, not even quite three.

We got a little more concentration out of her when they focused on recognizable things, like the head, or when the baby moved a lot, and when it came time to find out the sex, I thought I knew for sure her answer. She’s shifted a few times, but stuck mostly with “a girl.” Friday morning I asked once again just before the technician started looking, and she reported this time, surprisingly, that it was going to be a boy. Hmm!

And then the baby wouldn’t cooperate, crossing his or her legs at the feet and keeping the pertinent parts well hidden. The tech jiggled the scanner trying to get the baby to move but it wouldn’t budge for several minutes. I was began to think maybe we were going to be thwarted – a sure sign that perhaps we’re just the kind of people who should leave it up in the air – when she finally got it. “I don’t see anything sticking out,” she said. “This is a girl!”

Two girls . . . check in on me in 12-14 years or so and see how I’m doing. I might just be a nervous wreck. Amanda, however, is relieved because she’s going to be a big sister (as opposed to the big brother she thought she was going to be – she’s not quite totally clear on how this system works.)

A side view of her head
Baby feet

July 7, 2008

Decision 2008

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 10:57 pm

If you were around for Unknown Johnson Ver. 1.0, you may remember that we opted to play the guessing game when it came to finding out the sex. Well, three years, four months later and we’ve been goaded into the opposite decision by the now-Known Johnson (you know, Amanda). The time has come – Friday morning we’ll be off to see the New Unknown Johnson with the request to find out what we’ll be having. But I’m not leaving you high and dry – I’ve created this handy little poll so you can play along at home. Take a wild stab at what the outcome will be on Friday, or what you hope the outcome will be . . .


Minor Update: In case anyone’s wondering, if she could, Amanda would click “girl.” Daddy, apparently, is the only thinking it’s a boy – I’ll admit it, I voted twice (once from each computer I use.) Come on, someone else has to be on my side here! I’ll be happy with either, but my gut is telling me the symbol associated with The Who will dominate tomorrow.

June 19, 2008

Degrees of subtlety

Filed under: Baby makes FOUR — Tom @ 9:54 am

I like subtle, I prefer subtle. I think subtle is classy. Perhaps, however, I was too subtle? Or maybe no one read the whole thing? Or . . . no one cares? Here’s less subtle, and very little reading is required, if that was the issue – the caring, well, I can’t do much about that:


Due date: Dec. 5. Yes: the next unknown Johnson.

I thought the other piece was a much better way to announce it. Oh well, so much for subtlety and class.

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