September 30, 2004

Nature vs nurture

It is a sad fact, my darling pumpkin, that regardless of how hard you try in this life, there are certain genetic barriers that will prevent you from doing some things that you might want to. Having said that, the reverse is true, and you will be inordinately good at lots of things without trying very hard at all. This can be a problem, particularly in early years, because it can lead to a lacklustre work ethic, but I'm confident that we can beat that out of you.

Considering your two primary DNA donors, namely your mum and I, we feel that the best way to cushion the blow is to inform you now about things that you might have very little innate ability to perform. These include, but are not limited to:
  • Putting on a duvet cover - this is one of your mother's own handicaps, and means that I have sole responsibility for duvet cover application in our house
  • Cooking rice - for all of the many and varied culinary delights that will permeate your life that have been made by me, I can safely say at this stage that it's possible you will inherit my abject inability to cook rice. Even with a rice cooker. That's automatic
  • Being sick - People of a Dennis persuasion are notoriously bad patients. Penfords, particularly of the Penford-Dennis variety, are infuriating. It is likely that you will drive us to distraction at least several times
  • Ball Sports - Whilst your Uncle Tom is a professional soccer player, your mother and I both have very little capability in the department of catching and throwing / kicking /hitting balls and such pursuits
  • Singing - Please do not hate us for ensuring beyond doubt that you can never pursue a professional singing career. We're sorry.
Whilst these may seem like fairly earth shattering failures in terms of your ability to exist within and interact with society at large, there are a few upsides that are associated with being related to your mum and I. Some of these are as follows:
  • Culinary capability - Your mum is one of the world's great bakers, and I am famous for being able to conjure edible morsels from even the barest cupboard (although in extreme circumstances I guarantee only to provide "nutritious and filling" meals that may have ... interesting tastes.)
  • Eclectic musical good taste - It can be stated without fear of contradiction that Evey and I have a music collection that contains gems from many genres, and we listen to it in an equal opportunity manner that can, as with the food we cook, make for some.... interesting combinations of CDs in the changer
  • Linguistics - Whilst trying to ensure that we don't go down the road of parents who badger their children with multiplication tables when the kids are trying to run around in the backyard with no clothes on and make a mud castle, we are both people who speak English very well, and several other languages very badly (this is not true, pumpkin, by the time you're born we will both speak French as well). It is likely that you will be at least bi-lingual in your first couple of years
There are numerous other attributes that belong to only one of us (which is why we make such a good team) and it is up to the toss of the proverbial coin whether you will grow up with any of these:
  • Balance - now this one could go either way (*chortle chortle*). Notwithstanding your father's little creek excursion of a couple of days ago, it is generally held that your dad has good balance. I can still, at time of writing this (although I'm not sure that the same will be able to be said by the time you're old enough to read it) rollerblade with some skill, and ride a horse at frankly silly speeds. Your mother, however, pumpkin, is not so blessed, although she is clever enough to not try walking across stepping stones when they're a foot underwater.
  • Colours - again, the probabilities here are polarised (*chortle chortle*). Your mum is a professional artist of some standing, and therefore can recognise, categorise and effectively use a staggering number of colours with astonishing skill. Your dad has trouble picking a tie in the morning, and has to ask your mum to ensure that his shirt/tie combination won't induce epileptic fits in his co-workers.
Having said all this, according to most literature, you have at least a 50:50 chance of breaking free from these handicaps and becoming your own person. Just don't say, pumpkin, that I didn't warn you.

Love you.

September 29, 2004

And as we wind on down the road....

It is true, pumpkin, that your parents are, to phrase it mildly, discerning in their tastes. We (ok, I) have been known to indulge in lengthy rants, spiked with profanity in most cases, concerning the relative merits of various entertainment options that I find do not meet the requisite criteria that I have so carefully laid down.

To that end, Your mother and I are likely, at least in your formative years, to have fairly solid ideas about precisely what constitutes worthwhile entertainment and what does not. Whilst it would be inconsiderate of us to point blank say what you can or cannot watch/listen to (once you are old enough to decide for yourself), we (ok, I) will be likely to have fairly strong opinions on what you are watching / listening to, and reserve the right to make disparaging remarks about it.

There are, however, a few ground rules that should be of assistance to you:
  • It is likely that any recording star who pays inordinate attention to their dancing is not going to be a major force in the evolution of music, although there are exceptions (see Madonna, Kylie)
  • Artists with only one name often have a similar creative lifespan (three months) as those above, although again with notable exceptions (again, see Madonna and Kylie)
  • Movies advertised as "feel-good" and/or "charming" (usually a movie that would otherwise be advertised as "feel-good", but is set in Europe or Australia) are generally simplistic, boring and derivative, and have few redeeming virtues, although again, there are exceptions (Mostly written and/or directed by Richard Curtis)
  • Jimi Hendrix is the greatest guitarist of all time. There are no exceptions
  • Yes it is true that your maternal grandfather, your uncles and I have a fondness for late 1960s English electric blues and heavy metal. This is because it's some of the finest music ever made, and you would be doing yourself a favour by listening to some real music instead of that bloody infernal noise.
  • Playing YOUR music loudly in the expectation that you will be able to drown out MY music is a mistake. My stereo is far louder than yours (at least until your mother yells at me)
This is really just a starting point for you. Soon, I will give you a definitive list of Movies You Must See By Age 21.

love you.

ps whoops i almost forgot today's episode of names that will not be yours (apparently a crowd favourite):

Denver Kade Lional Karson Lorne Cody Walker Royal Hunter Maverick Maarten if you're a boy, and not:

Calaya Tanith Branwen Delphine Faerin Gwendolen Magdalen Mairead Niamh Roisin SiobhanTalwen Fainne if you're a girl

September 28, 2004

Back to work again.


A three day weekend was had, and lo, it was glorious. Several interesting things happened, that I think you might like to hear about.

On Friday night, the lovely Robyn and Braden came over for dinner. The (lovely) Robyn arrived bearing many gifts, including tim-tams, a bottle of lovely wine, dessert and your first item of baby clothing!

We were astonished, and it was an occasion that enabled me in particular to, for the first time, see with my own eyes something that encompassed what size and shape you will be. Being able to picture you in this outfit was an incredibly powerful experience for me. The (of course lovely) pair of yellow overalls will be just the thing for helping your dad in the garden. (click on the left below your ultrasound photo to see them)

Your mum is just starting, it seems, to feel just the tiniest bit better. She has had a bit of a hard time of it in the last week or so, feeling very nauseated but at the same time very hungry. It's been a real struggle for her to keep you fed while she feels so sick, and to come up with things that she CAN eat that are nutritious enough for you. The cravings are now running full force, and we bought our first jar of pickles yesterday (I tell you what, pumpkin, for someone who's the size of a grape, you sure eat a lot). She's such a trooper, I don't know if I'd cope being as sick as she has been.

The big thing for this long weekend was always going to be mowing the lawn. I have been successfully avoiding mowing the lawn all winter, and it had gotten to the ridiculous phase in its growth.

Bright and early on Saturday morning, we fronted up at Bunnings, thinking that, as it was grand final day, that no-one would be wanting to mow their lawn and thus we would be able to hire a mower. No such luck, pumpkin. As we arrived, the guy behind the counter was phoning around trying to find a mower for the person in front of us in line, so there was no way that we were going to get one. I decided that the time had come to take the bit in my teeth, as it were, and buy a lawnmower.

Now you'd think that this isn't such a big deal, I mean it stands to reason that someone with a lawn as large as ours would have a lawnmower, but no such thing is true. For some obscure and persistent reason, there was some part of my brain that kept insisting that this was the final straw in the domestification of your father.

It seemed, to this voice in my head, that our wedding, the purchase of a 'family truckster', the failure to actually leave the house for weeks at a time, nothing had made any impact on the ideal in my head that I was still some kind of rock and roll highway child, but that buying a lawnmower would be the end.

Still, I took a deep breath and bought one anyway, and the results will speak for themselves. We will take back the backyard, pumpkin, and you will love it.

Love you.

more names that will not be yours if you are a girl
Jayln, Ammie, Kesleigh, Cydnee, McKayla, Brinley, Rebekah, Ashlee, Makenna, Mackenzie, Nikola, Quinn, Madaline, Kaitlyne, Tayler

if you are a boy, your name will not be:
Kade, Kacey, Kahil, Kahlil, Kaleb, Kane, Karey, Karl, Karsten, Kristopher, Keenan, Kyle, Kelly, Kendrick, Kinsey, Kirkland, Kyler, Kurt, or Kurtis.

September 24, 2004

The train keeps rolling on

It's Friday, pumpkin. I know that means nothing to you, but it means something to your mother and I.

We're having a long weekend this weekend, and planning to spend it in our garden, launching "Operation Take Back the Backyard". By the time you get here, it will be late autumn, and beginning to get colder. Right now it's the beginning of spring, and beginning to get warmer. With the passing of the seasons, the imminence of your arrival makes more sense to me, and I become more driven to provide a comfortable, safe place for you to arrive in.

This weekend, that means that I am going to mow the lawn, weed the vegetable gardens and move my Large Planter Box (otherwise known as a bathtub) to a new place with a mind to making it block off a section of the courtyard that the dogs are particularly interested in, and simultaneously create a tropical herb garden that will do something to combat the smell of dogwee. Time alone will tell me if this change will do any good.

The end result of all of this work is ideally that we will once again have a backyard that we can use in the summer months. There's going to be loads of people here at that time of year from other parts of the world, and it will be nice if we can show them a bit of the way we live in Australia.

Working in the garden for us this spring is something akin to how we feel about you coming. There's a lot of work that needs to be done to adequately prepare, and then there's work to be done in making sure that the seeds we sow get the things they need in the right concentrations, but at the end there's a wonderful result that is all the more exciting because we've created it ourselves. In a way, the planting that we do this weekend will mirror your own development inside your mum. So here's to you arriving this autumn to find a beautiful blooming jasmine vine on the bungalow....

Love you.

September 22, 2004

A parental manifesto

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all pumpkins are created equal, that they are endowed with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, parents are instituted among people, deriving their just powers from the need of the pumpkin to be housed, clothed and fed. That whenever any single parent becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the pumpkin to telephone its grandparents, and to complain loudly, although it is unlikely that this will do any good.

To that end, certain rules, rights and responsibilities have been crafted that are designed to enable the harmonious functioning of the household. They include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Pumpkins must agree to remain cute until at least their third year, so that their father is not tempted to sell them when they misbehave later
  2. Parents hereby undertake to provide food, shelter and clothing to pumpkin, on the proviso that it is the food, shelter and clothing of parental choosing, rather than pumpkin's
  3. Pumpkin must agree to minimise the number of times that pumpkin undertakes activities specifically designed to induce cardiac arrest in caregivers to one per 24 hour period
  4. Parents agree to limit the number of comments referring to pumpkin's musical choices, although retaining the right to attempt to influence this by playing Jimi Hendrix very loudly
  5. Pumpkin must attempt to refrain from playing the following games with Purdey and Kudra:
    • Horsey
    • Ear pulling
    • Poking
    • Wakeup Hitting
nb: wakeup hitting is a game enjoyed by many, in which one quietly approaches a sleeping target, then begins hitting them, shouting "wakeup hitting! wakeup hitting!"

September 20, 2004

Aching and sore, but triumphant

Tonight, my embyronic one, I went to the gym, for what is, I think, the first time in 15 years.

One of the things I decided about getting my life into the shape that I want it to be before you get here is that I need to be fit enough to at least try to keep up with you. Coupled with the fact that I have recently gone up a pant size for the first time since I was 14, I decided that a regimen of exercise may be in order.

Now you know that your uncle David is immensely fit, and so I thought that my best bet would be to accompany him to his chosen place of worship and, as he would say, smash out some reps.

I can safely say that I think I feel better. Sure, my arms and back ache, but I feel like I made progress. One of the things about going to the gym that I have discovered in my tiny exposure to it is that you actually feel like your muscles have grown. I'm looking forward, when you arrive, to looking like I'm young enough to be your dad.

I read a comic website called Penny Arcade, that you're too young to read. One of the guys who writes it had a baby just recently who, in the photo he posted, is wearing a "onesie" (gosh, pumpkin, that's an AWFUL word, I'm glad you're the one who has to wear it) that says "I Can't Read" on it.

Seeing this made me think about what we're going to dress you in when you arrive, and luckily the internet has once again proven that it can provide an answer to almost any question.

I'm sure that, as a child blessed with several great grandparents, about nineteen grandparents and more than a few interested hangers on, you will be regaled with no end of amusing tshirts

and onesies.

Dad out.

September 19, 2004

Party favours

And so it went. The party of the century took place last night amid much fanfare, and as far as I could tell, went off without a hitch.

All of the usual suspects were in attendance, no doubt people with whom you will have the pleasure of sharing company in the not too distant future. Much food was eaten (one of the things you will notice about this family, pumpkin, is that we all love to eat. Some of us love to cook, too, so it's a good arrangement.

Your mother went home early, and your father stayed at the party late to take advantage of his rapidly dissapearing 'free time'. Let it be said that he took full advantage of the situation as it presented itself, and is therefore feeling slightly the worse for wear today.

The thing about these large family gatherings, pumkin, is that one gets a chance to see people that one only sees at these large family gatherings. Old acquaintances are renewed, and (particularly with our family) , there is a chance to get your head around who all of the 'players' are.

I'm too tired to write this, I'll edit it in the morning.

Seeya pumpkin.

September 17, 2004

boys and girls

According to all of the relevant literature, pumpkin, it is about now that you will be deciding whether to be a boy or a girl.

Personally, I can see little genuine reason for choosing either, given the enlightened society in which we are privileged to live, but here's a few pointers to help you make your decision.
  • Boys, it seems, are better at hand-eye co-ordination, enabling such pursuits as football and videogames to be undertaken more easily
  • Girls are able to see and differentiate between colours more effectively than boys, making them far better at dressing themselves and choosing which colour we should paint the living room
  • Men have greater upper body strength than women, which means that they are better at taking out the garbage and mowing the lawn
  • Women have a higher tolerance for pain, and more stamina than men, making them the perfect candidates for being pregnant, giving birth, and taking care of men
As you can see, the scales are fairly evenly balanced, so the whole thing's a bit of a cointoss as far as all that goes. I guess the bigger question is how your sex will effect your mum and I.

It's easy for us to say that as long as you're healthy, we're happy (that's Not True, pumpkin, you're expected to be highly intelligent and very pretty as well), but I don't have a preference as to your gender. Either way, you will be shown the spectrum of the wonder that the world has to offer you.

Your uncle Dave's going to take you to the footy regardless. (another expectation, however unrealistic, is that you will be required to barrack for Carlton) We will only ask of you that you don't allow anyone to place barriers on what you can and can't do because of your sex.

It's a fairly well known fact around the traps, my punkin, that your Dad owns a lemon yellow ballgown, and has been known to wear it in public. I guess what I'm saying here is that, if you need to be a princess every now and then, that's ok too.

Love you pumpkin.

September 16, 2004

of naming books and truffles.

So, my pumpkling, it's been some time since we last spoke. Events have unfolded thusly in the interim:
  • Your aunt and mother had their birthdays
  • I had my monthly work crunch
  • We went out for The Most Expensive Dinner I've Ever Had
  • We bought a "Big Book of Baby Names"
Your aunt Liz (we're going to have to come up with some kind of a numbering system for these two) had her 21st birthday, although her party is not until Saturday. Given that my Nana and Grandad will be at her party, I had to call them to tell them the good news about you so that they didn't inadvertantly hear it from some other source.

Of course, on being told that her first great-grandchild was on the way, your great-grandmother reacted in much the same way as your grandmother Linda. She paused for a moment and then proceeded to tell me that she would have to dig up her knitting implements and begin to make with the knitwear. Your mother has fairly strong ideas about knitwear, and I'm fairly sure that she's going to begin downloading knitting patterns willy-nilly and forwarding them to all and sundry along with colour charts and fabric samples in the not too distant future.

My work crunch occured much as normal, with frantic activity followed by tedium followed by more activity.

Dinner on Tuesday night was truly an astonishing experience. Now pumpkling, it is documented fact that your grandfather Phillip once stated pointblank that he would never take any of the children out to dinner again (admittedly it's my recollection that this was immediately subsequent to Your Uncle David putting a handful of his spaghetti into my coke glass). I think, therefore, that it may be some time before I take you to vue de monde (like maybe 20 years), but trust me, if it's still there, I'll take you one day.

It was the most expensive dinner that I've ever had (also one of the very best). I had one glass of (very nice) wine, and your mum drank mineral water, but let me tell you pumpkino, truffles, pheasant and foie gras do not come cheap. You can pay.

In a moment of weakness at the supermarket last night, I purchased a tome entitled something closely akin to "The Big Baby Name Book". We had a browse through its many pages last night looking for some assistance in choosing your moniker, and although we're still a bit confused as to exactly what your name WILL be, we can now safely say that it will NOT be any of the following:
  • Shaniqua
  • Blayze
  • Ace
  • Dhavydd
  • Abacus
  • Cobalt
  • Spruce
  • Fawnzelle
That is all for now.

Love you pumpkin.

September 10, 2004

early nights and ravenous hordes

Your mum's asleep.

She's going to bed earlier and earlier these days, her body's taken up with the business of fashioning you arms and legs, fingers and toes, eyes, noses (only one, please) and ears. She eats four or five meals a day, comes home, watches TV for about an hour and crashes.

I look over at her constantly to make sure she's ok, that she's comfortable, that she's awake.

It's her 31st birthday on Tuesday, an event that will likely almost be lost in the gathering behemoth that is your Aunt Liz's (my sister, not the puppydropper) 21st birthday party. I think we should give her one to remember, so I've made a booking at vue de monde, which is a french restaurant in Carlton. She won't be able to drink any wine, and we'll have to go home early so that she can go to bed, but I told them that she's pregnant and they're ready for the ravenous horde that your mum makes up all by herself.

I'm not sure what I'm going to get her for her birthday. She says she wants a watch, but here's a tip for you pumpkin, if you're a boy (if you're a girl you'll already know this): When a woman says she wants something, that means that that particular item should be included in the range of gifts that you provide.

Take my word for it. Never buy a woman just one present. Four or five is much, much safer.

We're going out to breakfast tomorrow with J and R, who are having their baby very soon. They got pregnant on their honeymoon in the Maldives, in January this year. Their baby will likely be one of your very earliest playmates, and I hope that you will become good friends.

Your mum says we have to go to Garth's Place, on High Street. She had breakfast there last week, and they had cherry pancakes. By the time your uncle Harry and I had finished looking at our breakfasts she had polished them off.

Your mum likes pancakes, pumpkin. Cherry pancakes doubly so.

September 09, 2004

of careful panic, followed by tedious waits, then pink muumuus

Sorry about the lack of a post yesterday, my pumpkin, things, as you will soon discover, began working against us.

Yesterday morning promptly at 830am (15 minutes early), we presented ourselves at the desk of the fine and lovely Dr Pete. Dr Pete, you'll be pleased to know, pumpkin, is your obstetrician, or rather ours. After a short initial consultation, in which Dr Pete outlined a couple of things in the increasingly complex series of 'things we must know', your mum told him about some pain she'd been having.

It turns out that the illustrious Dr Pete is every bit as calm and professional as we'd been led to believe. While making sure that we weren't too alarmed, he picked up the phone and muscled us in to an appointment at the ultrasound place down the road. Dr Pete, my pumpkin, was worried that you had taken up residence on the Wrong Side of Town.

After a leisurely breakfast on Lygon Street, and a couple of phone calls to respective places of employment, we were on our way to the ultrasound clinic for what is technically called a "viability and location" scan.

Your mother, after a wait that was probably brief, but to my by now fairly stressed out skull seemed to take about nine hours, was told to change into a gorgeous pink muumuu style gown, and we were off.

The lovely ultrasound technician, Maria, made sure that we were comfortable and then proceeded to take some pictures of you and your surroundings to make sure that everything was ok. It turns out that we had very little to worry about. Your place of residence for the next eight months or so is exactly where it should be, and there's a picture of it over there on the left if you want to click on it to see it properly. The big dark region is called your "gestational sac", and the small white circle within it is your "yolk sac". You're in there somewhere, but you're too tiny for us to see yet.

We can't wait.

Love you, pumpkin

September 07, 2004

Listeria: the silent annoyance.

There are many things in our house, pumpkin, that annoy me. Our two dogs, who you will meet soon enough, have an apparently inexhaustible capacity to produce destruction and carnage that I am sure will be seen merely as a challenge to you.

It is a fact that the wiring in our abode leaves much to be desired, and that many of our powerpoints are dodgy to say the least. Imagine my surprise on Sunday night when I opened the freezer to make your mother up a batch of my famous bolognese sauce (equal parts Neil Perry and Phil Kowalski) and found that nothing in the freezer, pumpkin, was freezing.

Operation "prevent the pregnant woman from ingesting anything that might be even slightly dangerous" commenced in earnest, and several lovely trevally fillets, along with about a kilo of premium mince and four chicken marylands, instantly became dogfood as if at the touch of some magic wand. The magic wand called "Listeria".

Installation of a hasty and ugly extension cord appears to have rectified the issue for now, but rest assured that the creation of today's dish, "Pasta Sausagenese", was not an isolated incident in your nascent childhood. Through the stomach of your fabulous mum, you will continue, for at least the rest of this week until we get to the market again, to enjoy "interesting and creative" highlights from my culinary skillset. It's probable that tomorrow night will feature "Tuna Pesto Pastabake", which earned three stars in the recent "Pantry Culinary Centre" awards.

September 06, 2004

your family, or: "dad, how many of these idiots am i actually related to?"

One of the things that you will discover as you grow older, pumpkin, is that you are blessed with a much larger family than most 'normal' people.

How large? Well, you have several great grandparents in various countries, sure, but that's not out of the ordinary. Where you will come out on top begins, methinks, with your grandparents. Most people will tell you that one who is born with a regular compliment of grandparents should be able to count around four of them, two for each parent.

At last count, you have seven people who will lay a full or partial claim to being your grandparent. This, by my reckoning, places you already ahead of the pack, particularly in terms of the number of gifts you are likely to receive at birthdays and christmases, but the real meat in the sandwich arrives when we start talking about aunts and uncles.

As of this weekend, from what we understand, you will have eight uncles and six aunts, but here's the kicker; two sets of your aunts have the same names. You will have two aunt Amys and two Aunt Elizabeths. This may prove difficult, especially when you start trying to work out which ones you are blood related to, and which ones just happened to be hanging around when you were born, proferring bottles of champagne and promising that they wouldn't drop you.

Here's the other fun fact for today: regardless of your gender when you arrive, you are likely to be named after one of your uncles. Which one? That's for me to know and you to find out.

Love you pumpkin

September 03, 2004

a teddybear with a sore head

Last night, pumpkin, your mum and I went to dinner at the lovely home of your aunt Jann and your grandfather, Ian. We had already spoken on the phone to your other grandparents and felt that it was time to bring them into the loop.

Jann was in fact the first person that we told that you were coming, and we told her as soon as we knew. I think, though, that when we first spoke to her, it was before we had really come to terms with you, when you represented to me an idea that a baby was coming, rather than the stage at which we are now (terrified).

We talked a bit to your grandfather and Jann about what your name might be, and I think that they were comfortable with it. I'm not going to tell you what names we have in mind yet, because it's entirely possible that you'll turn up looking completely different from the name we have picked out for you.

Dinner was lovely, and so was the beer. Your mum's very tired a lot of the time at the moment, so she was ready to crash out by about 9:30. Today she feels a bit nauseous and very tired. So do I, but for entirely different reasons.

Love you pumpkin.

September 02, 2004

frances perry house : site report

After a hurried dinner at Thresherman's, which is just off Lygon Street in Carlton, your mum and I went up the elevator to the 11th floor of the Royal Women's Hospital. The top floors of the Royal Women's are dedicated to a private hospital called Frances Perry House, which is one of the places we're thinking of going for your birth. You'll remember that I told you that your uncle Nicholas and aunt Liz were born there, and it's considered one of the best labour facilities in the country.

The tour was led by a woman called Cynthia, who told us in no uncertain terms that our days of making plans and calling the shots are well and truly over. From this point on, she said, our lives would be dictated by responding to your needs. She showed us around the facility, all the while dodging wheelchairs carrying women who had just given birth, and trolleys containing babies only minutes old. The movement and noises reminded me of a military installation, everything organised to within an inch of its life so that the movements of mothers, fathers, babies, visitors and nursing staff could occur.

We saw all manner of equipment, bright lights and competent looking people. I think that it was then, for me, that the reality of what we had done began to sink in. You're on your way, pumpkin, and there's nothing that will stand in front of you now. You have made your decision about when you will arrive, and we are just your vessels. Your mother and I joke about the person you will be - confident, precociously intelligent and constantly seeking knowledge. We know from our own childhoods how much of a handful you will be, and we're looking forward to it, albeit with trepidation.

September 01, 2004

of care models, obstetrics and labor wards

so here's how it works, pumpkin. When you find out that a little bundle of joy such as yourself is coming your way, apparently you need to work out RIGHT NOW
  1. Which hospital you want to give birth in, if indeed you want to give birth in a hospital
  2. What sort of "care model" you want to use (and there's about a hundred of them)
  3. Which obstetrician you want to use, if you want to use an obstetrician
  4. Several hundred other small details of which I am as yet unaware.
We're going to tour the labour ward at Frances Perry House tonight, which is where your uncle Nick and aunt Liz were born, and then on Saturday we're going to check out the Freemason's Hospital, which is down by the Hilton. Either one I think will be ok, and you haven't really expressed an opinion either way just yet, so in the end I guess it will fall to your mum to decide. I have a theory that she's going to go with whichever one has the comfiest beds and best food.

We're going to meet the guy who we think will be your obstetrician on Wednesday next week, so I'll let you know what he's like.

All this kerfuffle and rigmarole is difficult. In many ways it re-iterates the feelings I'm having of being in the dark and not really knowing how this all works. I have a theory that it's going to get better, and I certainly hope that by the time you get here I'll at least be able to maintain the semblance of knowing what I'm doing....

love you pumpkin.