Monday, June 29, 2009

Little brother

Evan Reid Smith was born at 7:53 pm on June 28, 2009. He weighed 8 lbs. 13 oz. and was 20.5 inches long. He and Allison are doing well and worked brilliantly as a team all day Sunday. Until you meet him in person, please accept this yawny introduction. We will probably (certainly) write more here later.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

A philosopher's retort

Tobin can be a little impatient sometimes. I might attribute it to his age, but honestly, I know a lot of grownups who are less patient than he is. Still, I've tried to teach patience during walks (when he thinks he'll never catch up to Mama, who doesn't dawdle or play "kings on the mountain" like T does) and when building stacks of blocks to play with. He grasps the concept well and knows how to answer the question "How do you eat an elephant?" He'll confidently answer "One bite at a time."

I bridged to this question: "How do we catch up with Mama?" Again, a good answer: "One step at a time."

While we were eating yesterday, Tobin asked me the elephant question. I gave the stock answer. He frowned, then said something to this effect: "Yes, when the elephant is big I eat it one bite at a time. But sometimes the elephants are little and I can eat them all at once. So sometimes I eat little elephants in just one bite."

I can't argue with that.

Friday, June 19, 2009

What happens . . .

. . . when you mix Hot Wheels track, a new camera, and a dorky dad?


Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Such a serious face:

twinkle twinkle from matt smith on Vimeo.

Family of three

So here we are patiently waiting. Honestly, I feel pretty long on the patience right now. Since Matt is done with school and home, the three of us are having an especially delightful time. We wake up together around 6:30--perhaps a bit earlier than Matt and I would like, but it's hard to complain when Tobin wakes up especially funny and charming. We eat all our meals together at our table. We take morning walks with Hannah. We run errands together in the afternoon if we feel up to it. And Matt and Tobin often have some play activity scheduled, usually with our friend Bryon and his son Miles, which allows me some down time or "nesting" time, whatever I prefer. We've even enjoyed some movies on DVD (Cars and Wall-E thus far) in the afternoons when the weather has been oppressively hot or, like today, rainy.

Matt and I have steadily been taking care of our baby to-do list. The big items were arranging care for Tobin and Hannah in the event Baby Brother comes "early"--i.e., before Ashley arrives late on the 19th and Mimi, the 20th. With those plans in place, the other things seem easy, because after having a newborn once, we realize that our littlest one only needs so much stuff: a carseat, some clean clothes and diapers. We've made some space for him, mainly for his little clothes, in Tobin's room and might even get around to converting the toddler bed back to a crib, but there's no hurry about that.

I have my 39-week check-up this coming Friday. Wow. I realize that I've written very little about this pregnancy, but honestly that's a good thing because it's been very healthy and uncomplicated, much like my pregnancy with Tobin. Except for being slightly anemic and having to supplement iron, I've felt good. My weight gain is about the same as it was with T (30 lbs.) and I venture to say that this pregnancy has been easier on my body in its later stages. I'm not having the ankle swelling I had with Tobin, and I also feel like I'm sleeping more comfortably than I did the first time around. Emotionally, I feel considerably more peaceful and relaxed. I'm less fearful of labor and delivery. My greatest concern these days is how Tobin will handle being away from us for a couple of days and then the transition to big brotherhood. He seems to be looking forward to meeting his little brother, and often comes to talk to my belly and will spontaneously tell us, "I love my baby brother." The other night he even gave my belly a very gentle fist bump. Adorable.

There are no imminent signs that Baby Brother is coming soon, but things can change very quickly over the course of a day, or even a few hours. I'm been having Braxton-Hicks contractions for the last month or so, but nothing that resembles the increasingly painful pre-labor contractions I started having three days before Tobin was born. My official due date is this coming Sunday, the 21st. Unofficially, we consider June 26th my due date based on my 18-week ultrasound and our own calculation of our conception date, but my midwives didn't want to change it based on just a 5-day discrepancy. And it this point, it doesn't matter much, except that my midwives have tentatively scheduled me for an induction at 41 weeks (7am on June 28th). Given the choice of scheduling for 41 or 42 weeks, I chose 41 because Tobin was over 9 pounds. Assuming this baby is similarly sized, I figure it's better to have him sooner than later. My intuition tells me that he will arrive well before the induction date.

Again, right now we're really quite content to enjoy this precious time before the excitement (and work!) that will come with transitioning to a family of four. We appreciate so much all the inquiries and especially your prayers. And we will do our best to keep everyone posted on any changes.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Notice served

Tobin @ 1:54 pm on June 13, 2009: "Daddy, I'm going to write you a message. It will say 'Dear Daddy, I love you but don't bump into me.'"

Friday, June 12, 2009

Teacher Assistant

Today was my last workday before summer break. Tobin came along with me to tie up a few loose ends and bring a few things home. I didn't technically have to be there today, so we took the opportunity to go in late and leave early (and play and socialize a lot while we were there). Our morning got off to a great start with plenty of cars to see and talk about on the highway. Whenever we're on the highway (the "big road" in our family), Tobin calls out the makes of cars around us. For some manufacturers he can accurately call models, too. He reliably recognizes Ford, Chevrolet, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, and Dodge. This was our exchange as we were exiting the highway toward my school:
Tobin: That's a white Ford van.
Dad: Yes it is. That one is called a Windstar.
Tobin: A Windstar? I haven't seen those in years!
I've never heard him use that phrase before. I laughed for an entire block. We had a similar car-related conversation on the way home after finishing at school. It went like this:
Tobin: That is a Honda Civic in front of us.
Dad: Well, it's a Honda, but it's actually an Accord.
Tobin: Oh yeah. Yes it is. [sheepish grin and shaking head] Daddy, I'm sorry I said Honda Civic. That was silly..
While we were at school, we shot a video with the new camera Granddad and Grandma sent us (we're giving it a spin before Baby Smith arrives). Here it is:

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Three-year stats

I took Tobin in for his three-year wellness appointment this morning. Amazingly, we had not been to his doctor's office for a visit since his two-year check-up last June, except to get his flu vaccine in November. We feel fortunate that he has hardly been sick at all in the last twelve months, apart from a couple of ordinary colds. I suppose this is largely attributable to him no longer being in daycare--just one of the many reasons I am thankful to have spent the last ten months at home with him.

Tobin did wonderfully at what turned out to be a much more "grown up" check-up than he'd had before. He listened to the nurse and climbed up in the chair for her to take his blood pressure. He stepped up on the scale to be weighed and stood tall and still for his height to be measured. Tobin was a little bashful when taking his vision test. When the nurse pointed to a picture of an umbrella, he wouldn't say it was an umbrella, but instead whispered, "It's something you use in the rain." I think he really enjoyed the hearing test, and although he insisted on whispering, he smiled and told the nurse when he heard the beeping on his headphones.

We saw a new doctor this time, because our old pediatrician moved away about a year ago. She was very nice. Tobin answered her questions and climbed up on the examination table, while I sat a few feet away on a bench, for her to check his heart, lungs, ears, eyes, etc. I was so proud of him. Unprompted, Tobin spelled his name for the doctor. When I explained that he really seems to like letters and knows the whole alphabet, Tobin jumped in and said, "The whole alphabet goes like this . . ." and then went on to sing the alphabet song for her.

So Tobin is doing just great health-wise. He weighs 32.2 pounds and measures 37 inches tall, both of which are right at the 50th percentile. I can't say I'm surprised, but I also couldn't be happier to have had such a great report.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

It Just Is


Tobin's imaginative play has really taken off in the last six months or so. For example, he often pretends he's going to the store in his truck (toddler bed) or brown van (one of our two-door cabinets he has claimed) and will return with things he "buyed" for us. He also treats us to long stories about imaginary characters, complete with names he makes up. He recently told me a 20-plus minute yarn about color-changing baby foxes who eat little eggs and peanut butter and jam sandwiches, among other things.

Today after his "pretty nice" nap, he told me he dreamed about Curious George books, cabinets, and "clocks that are missing some of their numbers." Then he observed, "Dreams are kind of like funny jokes that I don't know."