My Beaumont Hospital Brownie

After every delivery, I have enjoyed the savory sensation of eating the Beaumont Hospital Brownie. So, when I became pregnant for a third time, I couldn’t help but look forward to this tasty treat. Unfortunately, they ran out of brownies on Sunday, so I had to wait an ENTIRE DAY for a new batch. I was a little disappointed to find that the recipe had changed a bit, as there was no longer a frosting topping on the brownie. So, I saved it to take home and put a huge glob of chocolate frosting on it when I got home yesterday. Yum!

BIG NEWS!!!!!!

I just wanted to let everyone know that it’s been 20 MINUTES, and our son is STILL SLEEPING in his bassinet up in our room! This is incredible news since neither Katrina nor Elena were fond of sleeping alone, and as a result the bassinet was more of a diaper storage aid than anything else.

Everyone keep your fingers crossed! :)

Baby #3: Allan Patrick Town

Allan Patrick Town was born at 3:51 a.m. at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, MI. He weighed 7 pounds, 4 ounces and measured 20 3/4 inches in length.

Thinking we were in for the long haul when I discovered I was only 2.5cm dilated at 11 or 11:30p.m. (? I think), we set out to walk the various halls at Beaumont at midnight. We met Brad’s parents and my mom there as they had started driving from Stevensville at about 9:30pm. Of course my mom seemed to be taking it harder than I was during our walking extravanganza. I guess I’d feel the same if my daughters were in labor.

By 2 a.m. I was ready to return to the unit. I was dilated to 4cm/100%effaced/-2 station. Upon admission at 2:30 or so (once again, I have no idea of exact times), I was ready to shower in order to help ease the pressure. There was no time. Dr Hakim’s exam showed that I was 8-9cm. After a few of those contractions I was ready to begin pushing. Except for a small charlie horse(should have eaten that banana!) and totally forgetting how to push (you’d think I’d be a pro by now!), it wasn’t too bad. Brad’s coaching and Amy H. RN’s reminders helped A LOT!

As was expected, I’m having trouble sleeping due to the frequent visits by staff, and occasional grunts from Allan. He made me a bit nervous because he was choking on some left-over amniotic fluid. I suctioned him, and he was alright for a while. Then it started again, and VOILA!—-he coughed up a huge amount. I think he feels better now. Hopefully he won’t need to be deleed (suctioned out with a long tube) like Katrina needed to multiple times for 2 days after her birth.

Allan’s cries are a lot different than the kitten-like howls that Katrina and Elena had after delivery. He appears pretty content now that he has eaten and ridden himself of the mucous.

I think Allan has copper-colored hair at this point with a touch of blonde as well. Oh, and his body is really as soft as velvet! I feel bad touching him with my sandpaper-like fingers.

I think now that the boys are sleeping, I will follow suit. I can’t wait to introduce the girls to their new baby brother.

(Comments from old site:)


Congrats! We are so happy someone other than us finally had a boy! WOOHOO! Glad it is going so well. Keep the pics coming!

Allan Patrick

Congratulations to all of you! Welcome, Allan!

Jamie Lynch

Baby Allan

Congratulations and we are so glad to have a new baby boy in the neighborhood all the boys will be so excited to show him how to play baseball, etc. (ok maybe in a few months).MH


Now Robby will have a little sidekick when terrorizing his sisters and cousins :)


We are soooo happy for you. He looks wonderful. Have fun with his plumbing. Remember to cover him up.

Love, Juanita, Carmen, and Family

New blocks: "Google Custom Search" and "Recent pictures"

I’ve added two new blocks to the site.

  • “Google Custom Search” should make searching for information on this site a little easier.
  • “Recent pictures” will always show the latest pictures we’ve uploaded to SmugMug.

Updated list of my favorite charities

Charity Navigator, called by some the Consumer Reports of the non-profit world, has added the ability to share lists of charities. I’ve updated my list of favorite charities there.

Updated March 7, 2008: There are four charities I might consider that are not listed at Charity Navigator. They include:

Wireless access at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak

When Elena was born two years ago, Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak was considering providing a wireless network for patients, friends, and family, but it wasn’t yet available. There was a wireless network that had a name I’ve since forgotten that suggested it’d be for such purposes, but I couldn’t get it to work.

We all went to a class at the hospital today, a class to help Katrina and Elena understand more about having a younger sibling (and to prepare us for having another child, too). Using Helen’s iPhone I confirmed that there’s now an open wireless network there. Opening a browser window redirected me to a page asking for my first and last name and email address. Since I wasn’t actually going to use it, I called it quits at that point, but I was encouraged.

So, after Baby #3 is born, be on the lookout for up-to-the-minute baby coverage straight from the hospital. We’re just nineteen days away from the due date!

Free month of Netflix and $18 rebate for first-time Netflix customers

From Netflix:

We’re offering you a special opportunity to give your friends and family one month of Netflix service for FREE - that’s twice the length of our regular free trial!

When they redeem their free trial, you’ll get a bonus rental (up to 5 bonus vouchers per member) at no additional charge. This limited time offer expires 9/30/2007 so forward this email today.

The link in the message:

You might be able to combine this with the $18 rebate through FatWallet.

Katrina and verb forms

Wednesday evening Katrina was looking at one of her books, one with places for pictures of her when she was one year old and earlier. One of the pictures we put in the book was of her and me. In it, we’re in a pool — she’s sitting on the edge and I’m in the water next to her.

She looked at the picture. “Why amn’t…”, she started, then paused. (Her cadence for “amn’t” was more like that for “aren’t”.) She started again. “Why amn’t…”, she said. (This time her cadence for “amn’t” was closer to that for “isn’t”.) “Why amn’t I…”, she tried again. (The “isn’t”-like version must have sounded a little better to her, but she still seemed to sense that it wasn’t correct. She soldiered on.) “Why amn’t I swimming?”

“Why aren’t you swimming?” I offered.


“Say, ‘Why aren’t I swimming?’” She did.

I thought that was pretty cool. She knew the grammar rule (“put an ‘n’t’ sound at the end of the verb”), but she didn’t know the exception (nor, I might add, how to pronounce it in the absence of the exception). It does seem a little odd at first:

  • “Why are you” versus “why aren’t you”
  • “Why is he” versus “why isn’t he”
  • “Why are they” versus “why aren’t they”
  • “Why am I” versus “why aren’t I” (the exception she didn’t know)

What makes this even cooler is that I was reading The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature by Steven Pinker at the moment she asked me about the picture. If you find this kind of thing interesting, I highly recommend his books. The Language Instinct was the one that got me hooked.

I phone, you phone, we all phone for ...

… iPhone!

I got one for Helen (or, to be precise, I asked Helen to get one for herself). It’s her baby present. That means I’ll be taking over her mobile phone and number. She’s got a new number now.

I can honestly say I’m jealous. It is, to borrow a phrase from Ferris Bueller, “so choice.”

Planned downtime for Monday, September 10

Our host, NearlyFreeSpeech.NET, will be down on Monday.

On Monday, September 10, 2007 at around noon Arizona time (3pm Eastern, 7pm UTC), we will temporarily shut down our entire network to complete a migration of our equipment to a new datacenter. We anticipate that it will take four to eight hours to complete the move. All our services will be offline during that time.

If you’d like, you can read all the gory details.

Baby Birth Advisory System: Current Threat Level


Updated Sunday 9/23 11:44 AM EDT LOW: Allan Patrick Town was born at 3:51 AM. He was 7 pounds, 4 ounces and was 20¾ inches long.

Previous updates:

Updated Sunday 9/23 12:24 AM EDT SEVERE: Hard contractions, walking around, 2 1/2. Watch “Recent pictures”.

Updated Saturday 9/22 10:17 PM EDT HIGH: Vandana is here now. We’re heading to the hospital.

Updated Saturday 9/22 9:52 PM EDT HIGH: We asked our neighbor Vandana to come over and make sure Katrina and Elena are OK (they’re currently sleeping). We called the doctor and she said to head to the hospital. The last contractions were two minutes and twelve seconds apart.

Updated Saturday 9/22 9:07 PM EDT HIGH: Siblings have been called. We’ve asked our parents to come over.

Updated Saturday 9/22 8:41 PM EDT ELEVATED: Parents have been called to put them on alert. I’m putting our stuff into the Saturn.

Updated Saturday 9/22 8:00 PM EDT ELEVATED: Helen’s been having strong contractions every ten minutes for several hours now. She says they feel like the real deal.

Updated Saturday 9/22 12:34 PM EDT GUARDED: Helen had a few strong contractions this morning — strong enough to get her to lie down — but they’ve since subsided.

Updated Thursday 9/20 8:10 AM EDT GUARDED: Helen’s been having regular contractions, spaced about four minutes apart, all morning.

Updated Monday 9/17 2:30 PM EDT GUARDED: The doctor checked and says Helen is still at 1.

Updated Monday 9/17 10:39 AM EDT GUARDED: Strong contractions are few and far between again. Helen’s headed to the doctor for her weekly visit around noon.

Updated Monday 9/17 6:08 AM EDT ELEVATED: I, Brad, awoke shortly after 5 to the sound of the bathtub filling with water. I went in to check on Helen, and the first thing she said was, “Today might be the day.” Strong contractions every ten minutes for the past five hours. She’s getting everything ready again.

Updated Tuesday 9/11 12:04 PM EDT GUARDED: Helen was having some pretty strong contractions last night. They were so strong she ended up lying on the floor. From Helen: “Well, I had about five strong contractions that hurt my upper back, and then I went to bed. I don’t think that counts too much. When I woke up, I had a few more contractions that hurt my back, and then I was fine.”

Updated Friday 9/7 1:51 PM EDT GUARDED: The contractions have quieted down. Helen saw the doctor today, and she’s at 1. (We ended up watching TV with Sarah last night when we didn’t go to the hospital.)

Updated Thursday 9/6 6:38 PM EDT ELEVATED: Strong contractions. Helen called my sister Sarah to come down now and watch the girls in case we go to the hospital.

Three important rules of Hide-and-Seek

Elena and Katrina enjoy playing Hide-and-Seek. There are at least three rules of the game that Elena still needs to learn.

  • When choosing a hiding place, wait until the Seeker is not watching you.
  • It’s best to choose a new hiding place, not the same space behind the couch you always use.
  • When someone asks, “Elena, where are you?”, you shouldn’t yell, “Hiding!” (Actually, this one’s probably OK for safety reasons.)

How I got sick

Elena was the first of us to get sick. She started showing cold symptoms last week. I was trying to be careful around her so I wouldn’t catch what she had, but by Sunday night I wasn’t feeling great, and by Monday evening I had a full-blown cold.

So what happened?

On Thursday I was trying to get her to fall back asleep during her nap. While I was talking to her, she sneezed. In my mouth. There’s no getting around getting sick after something like that. I thought, “Well, now the clock’s ticking.”

True story.

My proposed fall TV schedule

TiVo’s gonna be workin’ overtime. Super-fancy hand-crafted table with a smattering of links follows.

Station 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30
Samantha Who?
Fox Prison Break
NBC Chuck Heroes Journeyman
ABC Cavemen Carpoolers
CBC Rick Mercer Report This Hour Has 22 Minutes
ABC Pushing Daisies
CBC Little Mosque on the Prairie
Bionic Woman Life
CW Smallville
NBC My Name Is Earl 30 Rock The Office Scrubs
CBC Royal Canadian Air Farce
Friday Night Lights Las Vegas

Desperate Housewives
CBS Viva Laughlin
Fox The Simpsons
Family Guy American Dad
Not yet scheduled
ABC Lost
Fox New Amsterdam
Fox 24

favorite, comedy, drama, comedy-drama, cartoon, fantasy, satire/news