Thursday, September 28, 2006

Roly-Poly at 19 Weeks

This is the text of an email I sent to Allison this afternoon:
From: matt
To: allison
Date: Sep 28, 2006 3:45 PM
Subject: mark it down

at 3:40 PM on thursday september 28 2006, i watched tobin lee smith, from a position lying flat on his back, roll completely over onto his belly.

he celebrated by drooling, spitting up, rubbing his face in his spit-up, and then crying because he was on his tummy.


-proud dad.
Tobin and I were on the floor--he was on his playmat--listening to Willie Nelson's Red Headed Stranger like we've done every day this week (Yes, he seems to like Willie Nelson). He began to rock onto his side like we've seen him do before, then he tucked his knee underneath him and rolled all the way onto his stomach. At first, his left arm was still pinned under his chest, but another grunt and arch of the back brought both arms out. I was much more excited than he was. He stayed up for a while, then drooled a little. What happened after is described above, so I'll skip here to the part where I was so excited that I scooped him up and danced around the room.

He did a repeat performance for Allison when she got home from work a little later. I'm pretty sure our reactions were encouraging enough that he'll make rolling over a normal part of his routine. Tobin Lee is 19 weeks old today. Next step: crawling.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Best Intentions

Tobin was making really cute faces today. He was sticking his tongue out and blowing bubbles. It was adorable. Since it was just the two of us, I decided to try to take a picture to share with other people. As if by instinct, he would retract his tongue whenever the flash would go off. So, instead of getting "cute" photos, I got really funny ones, like these:
making faces
tobin, or is that winston churchill?

Since I wasn't getting the still shot I wanted, I decided to get the video camera out to record his face-making. Without the flash, I thought I'd have a better chance of catching the elusive tongue-wagging. Instead, Tobin was so intrigued by the camera that he just breathed heavily into the microphone and tried to grab the lens cap. No tongue-wiggling, no funny faces, just a cold stare into the lens of the camera punctuated by little grunts. He's a pretty funny kid already.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

New Pictures!

The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind, but I feel like I'm beginning to get my feet back under me a little bit. One of the things that hasn't gotten its due attention is the Toblog. To catch up, I posted quite a few pictures on our Flickr account.

Hopefully, as I get used to the new schedule, I can find time to post pictures and updates more often. It's a little easier to find blogging time during my summer schedule. So, for those of you that still check the site every day, I'll be making an effort to send out more news. Even if it means I neglect a few essays written by my students. Thanks again for reading. Below are some of my favorite new pictures at our Flickr page.

sir smiles-a-lot

excited for aunt bethany

uncle al is funny

press kit photo

Monday, September 11, 2006

Tobin's Daycare

I don't know much about daycare. I've heard really bad things before [thanks Local Eye-In-The-Skywitness News], and I've heard good things before. But nothing I've heard has done justice to how nice everyone is who I've encountered at Tobin's daycare. The workers there are always friendly and seem genuinely excited about seeing me pick T. up. We chat for a while every afternoon, and they brag about his day in a way that has really made it feel like leaving him for the morning with family and friends.

I definitely have the better end of the daycare responsibility when Allison is working. She drops T. off in the morning, so she has to leave him. I get to scoop him up and take him home to play and take Hannah on a walk after I get done with school. Allison mentioned that Tobin had taken the transition to Allison working again the best of the three of us. I'll second that -- he is happy and healthy and wonderful. We think he's near 17 pounds now, but what's more fun than his growth is his level of alterness. He often seems to be on the verge of saying something. He tracks people and Hannah and laughs at himself in the mirror.

I continue to be thankful for the blessing he is and has been. And I've added to my list of thanks the people that he spends part of his day with Monday through Friday.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The grind

So it begins . . . Today was my first full day of work and thus our family's first real day of what will be our daily routine until Matt gets out of school in June. We did a few test runs last week, but it goes something like this . . .
Matt gets up first (at 5:00) and showers and then takes Hannah out. When he gets back in, I shower while Matt makes coffee, eats breakfast, and listens for Tobin, who is still sleeping peacefully. Then I try to get as much done as possible while Matt is still home and Tobin is sleeping: put on my makeup, eat, pack a lunch, fix Tobin's bottles and diaper bag, etc. We try to make sure Tobin is up to eat by 6:30. Matt leaves shortly after that. Then I dress Tobin, finish dressing myself, walk the dog again, pack Tobin up, and we leave between 7:15-7:30. I drop Tobin off at school and start my 40-minute commute to Raleigh. Matt picks Tobin up shortly after 3:00. I get home around 6:30. We hang out with Tobin, he goes to sleep, we do a little extra work, and then go to sleep ourselves.

It's been a long day. Fortunately, I think Tobin handled it better than any of us, Hannah included. He seems happy and content, even though his parents are a bit overwhelmed by it all at the moment. We're hoping time will help the routine go a little more smoothly, but for now it's quite different from our relaxed summer days.

Friday, September 01, 2006

TL Smith, Stormhopper

In an escape worthy of a B-movie, Tobin and his mom and dad left home 2 hours before Ernesto hit North Carolina. As exciting as that sounds, it was actually a planned trip, not an evacuation. We're all spending Labor Day weekend with Allison's side of the family in Florida.

It's been a long time since my last blog post becuase it's been hard to prioritize it in my list of things to do. The beginning of school has gone really well. It's been fun to talk to old students of mine about Tobin and the excitement of the last few months. And like any good dad, I keep a stack of photos in my room for anyone who provides the slightest opportunity to show him off.

While it isn't the most productive thought, I find myself thinking ahead to future time off that I can spend with Tobin. I wouldn't have thought that spring and summer breaks could be more eagerly anticipated than they already were. For now, we're enjoying a few days in Florida before getting ready for Tobin's first experiences with chilly weather.