Sunday, November 30, 2008

Max is on a cranky kick. Don't make Max angry. You wouldn't like him when he's angry.
Max smash!

Posted by JBB at 10:51 PM 0 comments Labels: ,

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Max was not named after anyone, but since picking the name I have noticed how many Maxes there are out there. It's like when you buy a certain make of car and suddenly you see them everywhere. To get this out of my system I'll be attempting to post a Max of the week.

  • Name: Max Fischer
  • From: Rushmore (1998)
  • About: Played by Jason Schwartzman, Max Fischer is the lead character in one of Wes Anderson's best movies. He stages plays based on famous movies like Serpico, compulsively starts clubs, and is such a bad student he ends up getting expelled and going to public school. He also falls in love with a teacher and convinces Bill Murray to build an $8 million aquarium for her, before meeting his true soul mate, the clever and earnest Margaret Yang.
  • Quote: "Maybe I'm spending too much of my time starting up clubs and putting on plays. I should probably be trying harder to score chicks."
  • Connection: At our wedding, we asked a string trio from the Capriccio Ensemble to play "Margaret Yang's Theme" as our recessional music. We still have the sheet music if anyone wants it.
  • Meta: For the 1999 MTV Movie Awards, the Max Fischer players did a series of very funny short plays based on the nominated movies. Here they are, thanks to YouTube:

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Friday, November 28, 2008

In response to your requests for more photos, we've loaded a bunch onto Flickr. Some are shown below -- click on any one to see it larger. You can also click here to see the whole collection. We'll eventually do some organized blog posts with captions & stuff, but hopefully this will sate your interim appetite for more Max.

finger in mouth Thanksgiving suit 2

Thanksgiving suit in car seat sleeping on dad

Grandpas and Grandmas:

IMG_1731 Max Just Says No to Being Carried Home in Mizz Karen's Purse
Jonathan's dad with Max Jonathan's mother with Max

Uncles and Aunt:

Jonathan's brother Adam Jonathan's brother Adam
Aunt Sharren Charlie holds baby!

A millisecond before Jen tells me to stop taking photos already and get back to taking care of the the baby:

Max was born Friday, November 21, 2008 at 9:34pm. He weighed 7 pounds 13 ounces, and measured 20 inches long. He and Jen are both doing great and are in good health. Here are some first photos from that night.

Max is brand new

Jen meets Max

Jonathan and Max in the hospital nursery

In the hospital nursery

Jen holds Max for the first time

Jen holds Max for the first time Sleeping in hospital basinette
Sleeping in hospital basinette Max looks at his mom

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Monday, November 17, 2008

Jen and I both like art and crafty stuff a lot, so we ended up with some neat art to hang on the walls of the kid's room. Here are the highlights.

Animal triptych
Jen got these great animal prints from Marisa Haedeke's Creative Thursday store on Etsy. You should all go to her site and buy lots of stuff from her. [BTW, advice for those of you playing the home game -- hanging three frames at exactly the same height is harder than it sounds.]

Bugs -- Chasin'
My parents got me this amazing original Bugs Bunny drawing a while back, and it seems totally appropriate (and maybe even classy) in the kid's room.

Mini Marvels
Chris Giarrusso did this awesome drawing of the Mini Marvels for me at San Diego Comic-Con this year. You should all go to his site and buy lots of stuff from him, too. Start 'em young! Fun fact -- when choosing who I wanted in the drawing, I ruled out the Human Torch because of a vague sense that the kid shouldn't get the idea that fire is good. But who do I choose instead? Hawkeye, who shoots pointy arrows, and Wolverine, who has knives coming out of his hands. I'll get the hang of this parenting thing eventually, I promise.

Top of bookcase
Tchotchkes on the top of the bookcase. From left to right:
  • Photo cube with photos of me as a little kid. If you zoom in you can see the spiffy bow tie.
  • Rock painted like a duckbill dinosaur I must've done when I was like 4 or something.
  • Mr. Toast and Joe Egg by Dan Goodsell -- awesome comic, he has an Etsy store too.
  • Supercool robot piggy bank my Mom got the kid at the baby shower. I had to be physically restrained from keeping it for myself. Thanks Mom!
  • Three squishy ghost lamps from IKEA in green, blue, and red. I need to take a photo in the dark with them lit up. They are eerie goodness.

Posted by JBB at 10:23 PM 0 comments Labels: ,

So where are we going to put the rugrat?

Baby room "after" part 1
This photo is a good comparison with the 'before' -- hard to belive it's the same room. The Best Chairs glider from Buy Buy Baby is about as super-comfy as it looks. Jen found the curtains at Urban Outfitters after an extensive search. They have neat stencil images on them, including pairs of bird sewing scissors.

Baby room "after" part 2
Check out all those books! Being married to a children's book editor has its advantages, massive discounts on printed matter being one of them.

Many thanks to Jen's parents for our Pottery Barn crib. The balloons are in there to freak out the cats if they jump in, thus training them not to jump in when there's a baby in it. We think it worked because there's a few claw marks on the crib that suggest a panicked cat getting the heck out of dodge. Also check out the rubber duck photos over the crib. Postcards from IKEA + a frame from Target = cheap coolness.

dresser/changing table
Dresser with changing stuff on it. Check out the monkey on the hamper. You can never have too many monkeys in a baby room. I would buy the baby a pet monkey if I thought Jen would let me get away with it.

Posted by JBB at 9:54 PM 0 comments Labels: ,

Renovating the kid's room was a team effort. Jen's mom Karen and friend Aimee did a bunch of work to help. I mostly kept Jen out of the room due to unfounded paranoia about paint fumes, but she ended up helping a lot anyway, esp the molding.

The Wallpaper, The
Step 1: all that wallpaper had to go. Washing the glue off the walls is pretty miserable and left my arms aching, but I did discover that I apparently have quite a talent for stripping wallpaper.

Where are the receipts? No, seriously, where are the receipts?
Step 1a: check out the splotches of brown paint under the wallpaper. Really gives you that crackhouse vibe. Seriously, where are the receipts?

Patching Aimee working on the walls
Step 3: patching. Jen's mom and Aimee patched innumerable holes and dents in the century-old plaster walls.

Step 3: priming and painting. Jen's mom is the all-time queen of painting ceilings (here she is scraping to make it extra perfect). Aimee is starting up the actual wall color, a pastel green. After the first coat it looked more like a lime green highlighter, but fortunately multiple coats and a good overnight dry made it look like we wanted.

Step 4: steam cleaning the rug. Jen borrowed her mom's steam cleaner and got out a bunch of old stains from the rug. Looks pretty damn good now.

Step 5: fixing the window. One of the windows was cracked and the ropes had broken so it couldn't be raised, so we got in a window guy to fix it up. (Thanks, Window Repairs In Your Home of Ramsey, NJ!)

Posted by JBB at 9:31 PM 0 comments Labels: ,

Here are some original photos of the kid's room from our house inspection and walkthrough.

Kid's room when we first moved in bedroom
Looks pretty normal, doesn't it?

Zoom in, though, and you can see some special wonders like
  • Three kinds of wallpaper
  • A border saying "Flowers Harmony and Love" over and over
  • Green picture molding
We pretty much ignored this when it was just a guest room, but if you know Jen and I you can imagine our kid is unlikely to be the Flowers Harmony and Love type.

Posted by JBB at 9:04 PM 0 comments Labels: ,

Saturday, November 15, 2008

You may be aware that our house is a bit of a fixer-upper which we've been working on steadily since we moved in. (We tried to get a houseblog going but it fizzled out, mostly my fault I am sorry to admit.) The reason I mention this is that having a baby meant we had to find a place to put the baby. Solving this issue involved a complex rearranging game like one of those number sliding puzzles.

The old guest room had to be turned into the baby room, which meant we had to relocate a guest sleeping area, our treadmill, and two full Billy bookcases. To have enough room for all that in my home office and Jen's craft room, we we needed to close up a large wall opening that had connected my home office with Jen's craft room, which meant calling back Tico's Carpentry, the reliable folks who moved a doorway and built an extra wall when we were renovating our kitchen. We had to buy a bunch of bookshelves -- more Billys for Jen, and a bunch of Elfa shelves from the Container Store for me.

The upshot was a couple months with the second floor in chaos -- I only got the new storage shelves into my closet last week. But the results were good. I'll put up a separate post with before & after shots of the baby room itself.

Posted by JBB at 3:18 PM 0 comments Labels: , ,

Hey, why wait to embarrass your kid until he's, you know, born? Thanks to the magic of ultrasound you can watch the kid's ontogeny recaptitulate his phylogeny in stunning time lapse photography. Soon he'll be leaving the womb and making his own way in the world. I hope he can find work in these challenging economic times.

March 28 -- 5 weeks 5 days -- the little blob on the right. The round bubble is the yolk sac I think.

April 4 -- the round thing is still yolk sac, not a head.

April 11 -- 7 weeks 4 days -- head and limbs.

April 25 -- big ol' head. For me this one gives off a kind of starchild-at-end-of-2001 vibe. Enlighten us, space baby!

May 7 -- 11 weeks 6 days, heart rate 141 beats per minute. The kid is a techno song.

May 14 -- ontogeny recapitulates technology as TV goes color.

June 25 -- 3D ultrasounds are the coolest things ever. Jen pointed out that this looks like a baby wrapped in spray foam insulation. (That thing in the front is not an insanely beefy arm.) Also this starts a few weeks of debate about whether the baby has my nose.

October 31 -- the kid wouldn't stop holding his arm across his face and scowling. Apparently he really wanted to go out for Halloween as Batman or Dracula. Either that or he's just mad that we tried to wake him up.


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