Monthly Archives: February 2009

Making a Statement…With Baby Clothes

So yesterday, I received in the mail a free onesie from Pampers/UNICEF. For every onesie that Pampers sends out to prospective parents and their babies, they will donate a certain amount of money to UNICEF.

Here is a picture of what we got:

Maybe it’s just me, but I think these kinds of baby clothes are perfect for Gen-Y parents. We’re such a ‘statement’ generation anyway, I think it’s quite appropriate and even…cute to dress our children in this stuff.

I’m looking around for more clothes like this for our baby to wear, but I really think that this onesie by Pampers/UNICEF is a great start.

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Wisdom Tooth Removal

I still hope to update tomorrow or Friday. But wanted give notice that due to the Vicodin-induced semi-coma I expect to be in after my wisdom tooth removal tomorrow, it may not happen.

If so, have a great weekend!

Week 17

Your baby is practicing sucking and swallowing as she gets ready for the real thing: a breast or bottle! As for Mom, you may be warding off some unwanted belly touching.  What’s up with your baby? She’s about the size of your palm, weighs about five ounces, and she’s developing some body fat (join the club, baby!). Her heart is now regulated by her brain (no more random beats) to beat 140 to 150 times per minute — about twice as fast as yours!

How a Baby Can Save a Life

In any given year, about 25,000 organ transplants are performed in the United States. At any given time, there are approximately 100,000 Americans on a waiting list for a transplant. And since 1995, 89,664 Americans have died while on a waiting list for a transplant.

Whether it be the inability to find a match, the lack of donors, or the serious progression of the disease, it’s hard to believe than so many lives have been lost when they could have been saved.

As parents, we look forward to bringing a life into the world. But what if, at the same time, we could use the birth of our child to help save another life? Enter cord blood donation.

The umbilical cord serves a crucial role in prenatal development, as it serves as the primary connection between baby and mother. Traditionally, after a baby is born, the umbilical cord and placenta is discarded (or, in Tom Cruise’s case, cooked and eaten). However, it has been found that the umbilical cord is rich in life-saving stem cells, and cord blood is one of the three sources of cells used during organ transplants. Additionally, cord blood has been used successfully in marrow/cord blood transplants in leukemia and childhood cancer patients.

For patients that need an organ transplant quickly, or have had difficulty finding a bone marrow match, cord blood can often be the difference between life and death. And in even in cases where the cord blood doesn’t have enough stem cells to assist in a transplant, it can be donated to ongoing research programs across the nation.

The National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) has 18 cord blood banks all over the country where interested parents can donate, for free, their baby’s umbilical cord blood for use in the national marrow donor registry. My wife and I are looking into the possibility of donating our child’s cord blood so that, maybe, a life can be saved.

I would encourage all expecting parents to look into the possibility of donating your baby’s cord blood to a cord blood bank. Many hospitals have partnerships with banks. And if not, there are several banks that will travel to pick up your donation from your hospital.

Hopefully the birth of our child can save the life of another. The newest generation of parents should make this their mission, and if even half of us can choose to donate our childrens’ cord blood, think of what a difference we can make.

Week 16/Second Appointment

With a whopping weight of anywhere from 3 to 5 ounces and a length (crown to rump) of 4 to 5 inches, your baby is growing up fast. Muscles are getting stronger, especially the back muscles, enabling your little one to straighten out even more. Your baby-to-be is looking more and more adorable, with a face that has eyes (complete with eyebrows and eyelashes) and ears in the right spots. What’s more, those eyes are finally working! Yes, it’s true: Your baby’s eyes are making small side-to-side movements and can even perceive some light, though the eyelinds are still sealed. Your baby is also becoming more sensitive to touch. In fact, he or she will even squirm if one poke’s your partner’s belly.

Our second appointment was on Friday. It was actually very quick. But we did get to hear our baby’s heartbeat. At 162 beats per minute, it was apparently indicative of a girl’s heartrate (in general, girls are thought to have heartbeats over 140 bpm, but it’s not that scientific).

We also learned that on March 16th, we should be able to find out the sex of our baby! What a long month this will be.

Apologies…

For the lack of updates.

This week was a week of personal/family issues that just left me exhausted. Our second appointment is on Friday, and I hope to come back in full force next Monday. Have a great weekend!

Working Parents

Only five countries in the world do not offer some form of paid parental leave: Australia, Liberia, Swaziland, Papua New Guinea, and the United States.

New parents in the United States, by law, are permitted 12 weeks of unpaid parental leave…as long as they work for a covered company and have worked at the company for at least one year.

As a point of comparison, women in the UK may receive 52 weeks of leave, 39 of which are paid, with the first 6 weeks at 90% and the remainder at a fixed rate.

Millennial couples are increasingly likely to both hold jobs. Nowadays, many households rely on two salaries, especially as costs increase, resulting in higher car payments, mortgage payments, and perhaps most relevant to millennials, educational loan payments.

But most unfortunately, the United States offers no law requiring paid leave to mothers or fathers. I am fortunate enough to work at a place where I am entitled, as a father, to three weeks of paid leave after the birth of my child. But isn’t it high time for the United States to fall the way of other major industrialized nations and offer mothers and fathers the opportunity to spend more time with their child, and not be penalized financially?

Even Iraq offers 62 days of paid leave to mothers. China offers 90 days.

Just sayin’…

Week 14

Beginning in the second trimester, fetuses start growing at different paces, some faster than others, some more slowly. Despite the differences in growth rates, all babies in utero follow the same developmental path. This week, that path is leading your baby–who is about the size of your clenched fist– toward a straighter position as the neck is getting longer and the head more erect. And on top of that cute little head, your baby might actually be sprouting some hair. Eyebrow hair is also filling in about now, as is body hair, called lanugo. Don’t worry, it’s not permanent. This downy coating of hair is there to keep your baby warm for now–like a furry blanket. As baby fat accumulates later on in your pregnancy, most of that hair will be shed–though some babies, especially those born early, still have a temporary fuzzy coating at delivery.

Also, this marks the start of the second trimester. We are officially one-third of the way there.