Wednesday, May 31, 2006

A friend of Tobin's is a friend of mine

Tobin doesn't realize it yet, but there are lots of people excited about him. We love to have people visit and share in the excitement of watching him sleep. That bit about "watching him sleep" should be an oxymoron, but one of the surprises I've had in two weeks of being a dad is that watching him sleep is one of the most enthralling experiences I've ever had.
another allison visits.

elizabeth says hi

Monday, May 29, 2006

Night time

Night time is my time with Tobin. During the day, with two grandmas, a grandpa, a dad, and usually a friend stopping by, I feed him and hand him off. My job is pretty easy during everyone else's waking hours. It's been really nice. At night, it's Tobin and me. Matt does wake up to help change a diaper or help position Tobin for nursing, but I usually have to be up anyway so I'm hesitant to wake him. The first few nights were kind of rough, but lately Tobin's been sleeping longer. I've also tried to re-frame my thinking about day and night. Tobin will sleep from 10pm to 9 or 10am. Of course, he wakes up anywhere from 3-5 times during that span. But I just try to think about how this is our time and be thankful for the time I have (kind of) alone with my son. It's a sweet sweet thing to have him fall asleep on my breast and watch his breathing change as he slips into deep sleep. Sometimes I'm not as thankful at 3:30am, but for now I am trying to treasure this time . . . I fear it will be too soon that I am worried about him being out past his curfew.

And all things considered, last night was a really good night. Tobin slept from 12:00 to 3:00 and 4:30 to 7:30.

Sunday, May 28, 2006


and he was a big baby?
As if I could feel any more joy after only 10 days with Tobin, it's been great to see him around his grandparents this weekend. In a week that I've been continuously reminded how blessed we are as a family, having them here has only added to that feeling. I don't worry about how our family will get along or worry that someone shouldn't be around the baby. Instead, it's just a feeling of love and . . . well, family. At least, what I've known and expect family to be.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Tobin Lee, the name

Many have asked about Tobin--how we came up with that name. It sort of just came to us. We tended to like Hebrew names, because many of them have Biblical ties and nice meanings. So one night we were looking at a list of Hebrew boy names and ran across the name Tobias, which means "God is good." We both liked the name a lot, but we worried that Tobias Smith sounded too much like a nineteenth-century fire-and-brimstone preacher (not that there's anything wrong with that), so we started looking at various forms of the name. Tobin seemed the perfect fit. One of our sources suggests it's a more Anglicized, modern version of Tobias. Plus it just sounds nice. And once we met our son, we knew it was right.

Tobin's middle name is in memory of Matt's maternal grandfather, Lee Yardley, who we lost shortly before last Christmas. Matt's Papa was a gentle giant who we miss tremendously and wish could have met his first great-grandson. We look forward to telling Tobin all about his great-grandfather Lee . . . and think that his wrinkly forehead favors him.

Friday, May 26, 2006


The website and the Toblog have been a lot of fun so far (if not as much fun as Tobin himself). I can't take all of the credit, though. I have to give some to my assistant art director.
tobin helps with the toblog
All entries here have passed muster with Tobin, who is quite the expert at passing muster -- among other things.

Speaking of that, I changed my first diaper (yes, ever) on Friday, May 19 and lost track of how many I'd done by Saturday night. I attribute my early successes to the on-the-job training program Tobin has instituted. He's a creative coach, using different techniques at irregular intervals to keep me on my toes. "Partial reinforcement" is a psychological concept I didn't learn about until well into my teenage years, but Tobin apparently practiced and mastered it in utero.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Professional Help

We're readers. In general, I find books and manuals helpful, but it seems like there's a theme among baby books that I've been consulting. Last night, Tobin was either fussing or eating for a four-hour stretch -- seriously fretting or ravenously eating. So . . . I check a couple of baby books. It seems like the books always say something like: "If your baby is fussy immediately after a filling meal, it could be an early sign of tripeptobribeosis, a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention or, he could be fine and especially hungry at this time of the day."

Hmm. So, it's either a) something really serious for which we should pack the car and call ahead to the hospital OR b) just relax and live with it because it's normal. I think I could write that book. Maybe I'll let other people ask me questions. Maybe the exchange could be something like this:
Worried Parent: "My baby has spit up three times in the last hour and has filled two diapers since I started looking for your email address in the helpful book you published."
Dr. Matt: "Hmm. Spitting up and pooping could be serious signs of a predilection for obstrepsopsis of the ductal tract. Of course, it could also be that he ate a lot and is merely going through normal digestive cycle. Beats me. Thanks for buying my book."
I guess that's part of parenting. Worrying and fretting over what is probably and hopefully nothing to worry about.

out cold

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Tobin's First Video

We've posted video of Tobin's room at UNC on our website. This was taken when he wasn't quite two days old. To save it to your hard drive, you should right-click on the link and choose "Save Target As." You can try watching the video live in your browser or streaming from our site, but I won't promise our server can make it stream evenly [edit: we uploaded at YouTube].

Here it is: Tobin's Room at UNC

Tobin's state 50% of the time

Monday, May 22, 2006

Feel free to leave comments.

One of the nice things about the Toblog is that you can leave comments for us and others to read. Just click the link that says "comments" preceded by a number. You don't need a blogger account. You can just list your name or post anonymously. That's the way most of the kids in my classes do it on my work blog.

In case you were wondering.

Hannah seems to be getting along fine with Tobin so far. I'm not sure she understands that he's here for good, but she's been really nice. Plus, in what I hope is a good sign, he's been able to sleep through her barking.
I think you can tell she's a little unsure by her face in this picture. All in all, ours is a happpy, sleepy excited family.

In a World . . .

I read and watched a lot of science fiction growing up. Last night (around 3:00), a science fiction line kept running through my head. I don't know if it's from the Twilight Zone or if that's my imagination . . .
"In a world where time has no meaning . . ."

Tobin's outfit for going home.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Spread the good news!

good news!


So, for four hours, the only way that Tobin would sleep was if he was feeding or sucking. If he wasn't doing those things, he was crying loudly, causing his parents to begin to question their fitness only 48 hours into this journey. Later the same night, he had to be woken up repeatedly to keep feeding. So, at two different times in the same five-hour span, you could have heard either of these conversations in our house:
"What's wrong?"
"He won't sleep. He wants to feed or suck."
"What's wrong?"
"He won't feed or suck. He just wants to sleep."
Tobin, my friend, I think that's what the grown-ups call irony.