Skip to main content


Showing posts from August, 2008

the boys

i love this series of photos of the boys! many thanks to our pal, jon for taking them.

"but i'm not tired...."

it always amazes me how the amount of sleep we get can so deeply affect our ability to function on a daily basis! the past few days left me feeling like i was swimming underwater, and frankly down in the dumps. piecing together a total of four hours a sleep a night, entertaining a three-year-old, and soothing/nursing a newborn seems to be a recipe for crankiness. anyhow, last night marcus gave me the best gift at the perfect time. he slept for a 5 1/2 hour stretch! meaning i got to sleep for almost that long! whew! i woke up this morning feeling like i had superpowers. i even got to brush my teeth by myself before owen woke up (not that i don't enjoy our daily discussions of bubble-gum toothpaste vs. "spicy" toothpaste). we had marcus' one month check up this morning, then met up with some of our favorite people on the island at the zoo. it was a low-key zoo visit, lots of strolling in the shade and sharing of a cream-cheese & jelly sandwich. we got home

Opening PDF files withing Firefox 3.0

Sorry, no news about Owen and Marcus in this post. They're doing great, but I just wanted to do a quick post about Firefox 3 which may save many of my fellow astronomers/Mac users some time and effort. I just spent most of my morning trying to figure out how to get Firefox 3 to open PDF files within a browser tab like Safari. I was about to give up and go back to my two-browser approach (Firefox for viewing with ad-blocking, Safari for reading astro-ph, etc.) when I finally came across this solution: It turns out all you have to do is install a simple PDF plugin and you're in business. Surprisingly this is not anywhere on the Firefox Support webpage, nor is it in the many Mac/Firefox forums I read through (most of these were all, "Just use Safari. Mehhhhh meh MEEHHH!") The only glitch I ran into is that the first PDF file I tried to open looked like a blank file with a huge horizontal scroll bar. The problem turned out to

It's all about the incentives

It was not our finest moment. Erin was sitting by the front door looking disheveled, distraught, very near tears. I was exhausted, embarrassed and shaken. Erin looked up at me and pleaded, "He's a good kid, right? Please tell me he's a good kid and it's going to be okay." Our team captain was down and the relief pitcher (me) was getting shellacked on the mound. Not a pretty situation in the Johnson household. The kid in question was down the hall splayed out in front of his room screaming his head off because he had been punished for refusing to put his shoes on as directed. As a result, I had just revoked his dessert privileges for the evening; this after revoking his DVD privileges for hitting me. In so doing I had exhausted two of our most important sources of leverage on the boy. Owen no longer had a reason to behave (or live, judging by his pitiful wailing), and I was seriously considering the "nuclear option" of paddling his butt. These liberal p

2 weeks & counting

we hit the 2 week mark on the 16th, and are feeling the effects of sleep deprivation. duh, right!??! it's almost humorous how i forget everything right now, and thinking of the words for things is absolutely a challenge. yet, i feel somewhat like a genius for remembering how owen slept much better swaddled at the beginning, and have started swaddling marcus for bedtime. we're trying to shorten those "witching hours" (lately from about 8-11pm) and i'm hoping the warm bath & then swaddling will prove to be our solution. speaking of baths, he lost his little umbilical cord nub at 1 week & can now take real baths- talk about some speedy healing! here's some more photos to tickle your fancy. thanks again to you all for your warm well wishes!

Elmo and Owen

Here are pictures of Elmo's Mother and Father. Notice anything? Elmo's mom is orange and his dad is red. Yep, Elmo and Owen are a lot alike. Owen is 1/4 black, and Elmo is 1/4 yellow!

while 1 do

Taking care of a newborn is a lot like debugging code. You try something new and wait to see if it makes things better. If not, try again. And just like with programming, there are only about 5 things to check, yet you spend hours before you figure out, "Oh! It's the same thing as before. Why didn't I think to check his diaper again?!" The things to check: 1) Diaper? Check it, change it. 2) Hungry? Give him to Mommy. 3) Gassy? Burp him. 4) Uncomfortable? Switch position (try other shoulder maybe). 5) Tired? Walk around the apartment bouncing lightly and patting his back until it feels like your arm is going to fall off. Somehow I always miss one of these. Or, it takes me an hour to cycle through them and by then it's another problem. Or it's the dreaded combo. I really thought I'd be a seasoned veteran after Owen just 3 years ago, but I feel like I'm starting over from scratch. Not that I mind, because I enjoy the problem solving aspect. Plus, Marc

Stochastic thought of the day

Did you know that the men of the Aka Pygmies in the northern Congo soothe their young ones by letting the babies suck on their nipples until the mothers come back from gathering food in the forest? Medical researchers think this may be why men evolved nipples, despite not having active mammary glands. So they're more than just decoration after all! Must have come in handy for our ancient ancestors when Mommy was away getting FroYo . Not that I know anything about that first-hand... Just sayin', s'all!

just can't get enough

here's little m, snoozing away daddy, baby-wearer extrodinaire owen likes to remind me that baby marcus' feet are smooth, while his own are bumpy. but not as bumpy as mommy's. proud big brother playing outside time for a big boy bed; toddler bed is lookin' mighty tiny owen's favorite things - getting ready for bed snoozing in the sling nonna's in love wide awake! stretch snuggling with big papi owen says "you wanna wear my crown, king papi" can you tell i'm a mommy in love?


Owen helped me clean the white board in my office, which Owen has adopted as his own for his drawings of water slides and smiley faces. He raced into the living room to tell Mommy about it, and when she came into the office to check it out, she said Erin: "Woooow! Look at how clean that white board is. I've never seen such a clean board!" Owen: (after a 5 second, very thoughtful pause) "Congratulations!" Next time you receive a compliment, you should try that reply. Then, the other night during bath time with Nonna (grandmother), who's in town helping out with the baby, Nonna: (singing) "Down at the station, early in the morning..." Owen: "No, no, no, no, Nonna, please stop singing!" Nonna: "Why?" Owen: "Because it's kinda scary for me." Nonna: "So you're saying I should keep my day job?" Owen: "Yeah." If you want to hear it like it is, just ask a 3-year-old.

More Pics

Here are some pics from Marcus's 2nd and 3rd days. The 3rd day (today) was his homecoming.

Marcus vs. Owen (t = 1 hr)

Here's a comparison of Owen's and Marcus' baby pictures at 1 hour old. Erin and I have differing opinions: one thinks the two boys look different as newborns, the other thinks they look very similar. Not that it matters too much, seeing as they're both perfect in every way. What do you think?

Introducing Marcus

Erin gave birth to a beautiful baby boy at 10:15am today. I'd like to introduce you to Marcus Asher Johnson. How 'bout some numbers: Weight: 7 lbs 3.7 oz Length: 19 3/4 inches Head Circumference: 13 inches Chest Circumfrence: 13 inches Cute factor: 11 out of 10 We sure were surprised when Marcus turned out to be 22% lighter than his 9 lb 4 oz big brother! I sure like the lighter package and slimmer form factor of the '08 model Baby Johnson. I'm home now for a short time while Marcus and Mommy sleep and eat at the hospital. Marcus is a champ with a breast. He latched on immediately when he was only 2 hours old. Johnsons are fast learners :) We should all be home together by Monday night. Thanks for all of you kinds words and well wishes! Here are some pics (more to come):