June, 2011 Archive

Great Big Stuff

by Bryan Friedman in Daddy's Corner

45675.jpg“Everybody’s got a little place for their stuff. This is my stuff, that’s your stuff, that’ll be his stuff over there. That’s all you need in life, a little place for your stuff. That’s all your house is: a place to keep your stuff. If you didn’t have so much stuff, you wouldn’t need a house. You could just walk around all the time. A house is just a pile of stuff with a cover on it…and when you leave your house, you gotta lock it up. Wouldn’t want somebody to come by and take some of your stuff. They always take the good stuff. They never bother with that crap you’re saving. All they want is the shiny stuff. That’s what your house is, a place to keep your stuff while you go out and get…more stuff!”

-George Carlin

I love this routine. (I recommend you watch target=”_new”>the whole thing because it is truly a great piece of stand-up comedy.) I’ve been thinking a lot about “stuff” lately because, as you know, we’ve been acquiring quite a bit of it over the last few weeks. I know a lot of families live in a very small place, and while our little condo definitely does not fall into the “large” category, I consider us to be very fortunate that our daughter is able to have her own bedroom, her own bathroom, and a “place for her stuff.” The problem is, we are running out of places for our stuff.

More from George Carlin:

“Sometimes you gotta move, gotta get a bigger house. Why? No room for your stuff anymore. Did you ever notice when you go to somebody else’s house, you never quite feel a hundred percent at home? You know why? No room for your stuff. Somebody else’s stuff is all over the…place!”

I posted a status on Facebook the other day that said “It looks like somebody named Graco moved into my house, labeled all of his boxes and left them in my garage.” It’s true. We have boxes all over the place containing lots of things the baby will need during all her various stages of growth for the next 6-12 months or so. Also, while she hasn’t even arrived yet, she has already completely taken over our former office, which was also the place where we put everything we didn’t know what to do with. (Though the nursery is really looking great thanks to my talented wife. I’m sure she’ll share it here soon.)

I knew we’d get to this point and for the most part I’ve felt prepared to handle all the new stuff that we’d be accumulating. I pride myself in taking after my Grandpa Bobby who could incredibly maneuver things around so that he was able to fit entire piles of seemingly endless items into very small spaces. I guess he had to…he had so much stuff! But even with my grandpa’s genetics and the fact that we’ve been purging stuff for months, I finally looked around last week and came to the conclusion that we just didn’t have the room we needed. Our garage had gotten to the point where it was housing almost all of the overflow, but the stuff we need regular access to was being blocked by boxes or furniture, and it’s like one giant fire hazard in there. So, as all dads need to be able to do, I came up with a solution and moved it into action quickly: overhead storage.


I know it’s not exactly rocket science I came up with there, but solutions don’t need to be original if they are good. And this one is. I now have almost 2,500 cubic feet of storage available above my head in our garage. I literally cannot wait to put all our never-accessed bins of stuff from college, high school, and past relationships up there and start using the garage more efficiently.

My grandpa would be proud.

  1. Mom/ Sharon/Mimi-to-be
    6/30/2011 2:45 PM

    Great! Now you can come over and take all of Alison’s boxes of little girl “stuff” out of OUR garage! I’m sure there are lots of goodies in those boxes that Baby Girl Friedman would like to have now!

  2. Bryan
    6/30/2011 1:13 PM

    No, but we did consider leaving Princeton in there while we’re gone.

  3. Grandma Ellen
    6/30/2011 12:46 PM

    Yes….Grandpa would be proud indeed. Now, good luck storing all that “stuff”!

  4. Stuart
    6/30/2011 12:11 PM

    Have you considered using the storage devices as multiple playpens, leaving you that room for stuff?

Turn Baby Turn

by Alison Friedman in Mommy's Musings, Pregnancy

Yesterday I had my 33-week appointment with Dr. Fiiiiine and if I had the cast of GLEE following me around to convey the soundtrack of my life a) Bryan would hide under a rock and pray for an avalanche and b) Mr. Shu’s kids would be singing the 1960s tune by The Byrds, “Turn Turn Turn” and Finn would have a solo because I think it’s funny that he looks constipated when he sings.

Why “Turn Turn Turn?”

Okay, so we have time. A little bit of time, but time, nonetheless. Dr. Fiiiiine said she’s not going the C-section route just yet and this baby could decide to nose dive in the next three weeks, leaving us in good shape. Baby is doing some crazy ass Cirque Du Soleil shiz and is currently in the Frank breech position, which means her tushie is down and her feet are up by her ears, making a V. Our daughter has a future in yoga, apparently.

I asked Dr. Fiiiiine if when we reach 36 weeks and baby is still Frank, which, would frankly suck, does she subscribe to the turning method whereby she, or the perinatologist, literally turn the baby from the outside through some hard-core massage and other probably-unpleasant-but-worth-it techniques. Normally yes, she said, but it looks like I’ve been harvesting an anterior placenta and baby-turning is much less risky with a non-anterior placenta.

Record scratch.

Say what?!

So not only is this kid being difficult in her freaky position, but on top of that, I have an anterior placenta which pretty much guarantees a hell-to-the-no in regards to any doctor attempting to turn the baby due to probable rupture and separation of the placenta during such efforts. I get it. That would majorly suck. Look, I’m all for keeping things in tact for the sake of everyone’s health, but I’m still not liking the cards I’ve been dealt and would not take myself to Vegas right now.

We left with the plan that if by 36 weeks, baby has not moved, we book a surgery for 39 weeks. And if in that time between 36 and 39 she does move, great. And if not, I go under the knife. Dun dun dun.

So here’s the part where Alison cries. A lot. The thing is, I really don’t want a C-section. I know plenty of people who’ve had them and say it’s fine. But for some reason, I don’t want to miss out on this overly-hyped female experience of having a natural-but-with-drugs labor and delivery. Apparently, my radical hormones have made it so that I desperately want hours of pain, a needle in my back, numbness in my legs, likely damage from — as my friend calls it — the hoo-ha to the brown-eye, swear words, screaming, poop on the table, bleeding, ice packs, and that super sexy hospital underwear to keep it all tucked in. Yes, I crave all that instead of having an appointment and popping out a perfect kid in under 10 minutes. What is WRONG with me?!

Dr. Fiiiiine also informed me — after I sheepishly asked — that she’s not a VBAC-er, so that means that for any future kiddos, they also come out via surgery. So I quickly calculate that that means I’ll never know what it’s like to deliver a watermelon the old fashioned way (for which most normal people would say “lucky you!” but because of my insanity, I mope).

What can I say? I just always imagined a delivery like the ones in the movies: I am reading in bed, and Bryan is watching TV (or probably, more likely, he is playing Angry Birds on his iPhone while listening to something on Food Network), and suddenly my water breaks, we look at each other and laugh — ha, ha, ha, ha! — and we time contractions and then go to the hospital where he feeds me ice chips and holds my hand and tells me I’m still sexy despite the sweat mustache and perfectly messed-up ponytail and then the doctor comes in and I push three times and out comes a perfect baby and you never see the afterbirth or hear about the episiotomy and, oh yeah, my makeup isn’t smeared and there’s no double chin in our first family photo. That’s how it’s done in the movies.

Hollywood is on crack.

So whether it’s the real-life version or the Hollywood version, I’m still delusional enough to want a vajayjay delivery (in real life, by the way, I have no problem saying “vaginal” but I fear mockery from readers if I type it. I have some strange neuroses I need to get over). So here’s the deal: I’m going to choose to now believe in the power of Internet vibes and ask you to send all good turning energy to this baby. She’s strong and she’s stubborn, but I’d like to think if we all will her to aim her keppie to my crotch, she will obey. Otherwise, she is SO grounded and will have a 7:00 curfew on Saturday nights and not be allowed to have a CD player in her first car (oh wait, that was me).

Baby View Ultrasound – 6/14/2011

by Bryan Friedman in Videos

Baby View – 6/14/2011

by Bryan Friedman in Photos

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Baby Melon (Dad’s Rant-aloupe)

by Bryan Friedman in Daddy's Corner

Wow! We’ve reached Week 33, which means that, as we know from our trusty fruit-o-meter to the right, our little one is as big as a…honeydew! What an interesting choice for this week. Coincidence? I think not. In fact, while Alison is carrying our little honeydew, I have my very own personal honey-do list which seems to be growing at about the same rate as the baby. While I’ve already completed some of these fun items, like replacing the sink fixtures in the baby’s bathroom, moving furniture around, cleaning out closets and continuing to sort all of the generous shower gifts we are receiving, there is an endless list of things left to do.

While most of the fun stuff on this list is related to preparing for the baby (getting the walls textured, getting the house painted, getting the baby’s room painted, setting up the baby’s room, decorating the baby’s room, installing new stair railing, etc.), unfortunately it’s actually the rest of the list (work, school, work, work, take care of my wife, work, pay bills, work, take care of the house, work, and work) that is keeping my stress level high. For some reason, I’ve become consumed with the concept of “before the baby comes,” since I realize that while much of this stuff is hard to get done now, I know it will be near impossible once our focus shifts to this little human living in our house.

It’s not just about trying to get stuff done “before the baby comes” either. I’ve been much more aware with everything we do that it could be our last [insert event name here] “before the baby comes.” We’re trying to plan our last “vacation” before the baby comes. We just had our last anniversary before the baby comes and Alison’s last birthday before the baby comes. Even relatively insignificant events like our last Dodger game and our last July 4th before the baby comes are happening soon. Even worse, there are a number of things that happened one last time before the baby comes and we didn’t even know it (our last trip to Disneyland or our last Halloween before the baby comes).

The reason I’ve noticed these “last time before the baby comes” events so much more isn’t just because I’m trying to hold on to what our life is like without a kid, but also because I am just so super excited to start experiencing our “first time with the baby” events.

Alison and I just recently finished the classes offered by the hospital and they really helped me visualize everything. Things are so much more real for me now than they were months ago, and we’re getting so close to finally meeting our daughter that I can actually already start picturing us as a family unit. Because of this, I’ve realized that when I’m out in public, I’m noticing babies and baby stuff so much more than I ever have before. A trip to the mall or a restaurant now includes checking out strollers and baby accessories that moms are using. I feel like there are more babies now than ever before, but I’m sure they’ve always been there…I just know what to look for now. It’s like thinking there are more people driving the model of car you are looking to buy even though they have always been on the road.

For now, though, I’m planning to just enjoy every event that happens “before the baby comes” so that I can appreciate every event that happens “with the baby” that much more. Thinking about it is seriously getting me excited, (…well, excited and scared).

  1. Kate Potts
    6/18/2011 10:09 AM

    This is a pretty fantastic, rarely shared dad-to-be POV. Thanks for being so honest. =)

  2. Cathy
    6/17/2011 6:12 PM

    This is the last Father’s Day you won’t be a DAD!!! There will be so many “last times”. I always tell my soon to be a parent friends, “When you leave for the hospital, pause in the front doorway and look back into your home. Why? This is the LAST time you will see it, as it is, at that moment(Hell, take a before pic)”…Next time you cross the threshold together Bryan you won’t be carrying Alison. Chances are fo sho you will be carrying your daughter or a diaper bag!!!

  3. Mom/ Sharon/Mimi-to-be
    6/17/2011 2:34 PM

    I’m looking forward to hearing about and seeing you both experience many “with the baby” adventures! Great times ahead.
    After 9 months of being compared to fruits and vegetables, I sure hope your daughter enjoys eating them!

  4. George
    6/17/2011 11:30 AM

    I swear, lines from “Into The Woods” apply to EVERYTHING!