Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Joshua comes home...

(click here to see the flicker set of pictures which includes
the video clip above if it does not come in through the email)

There you have it, the entire Stewart clan stuffed in a 2004 Toyota Sienna. I have a bunch morre pictures here if you want to see them. What a joy this has been! It was a long journey with an extraordinary gift at the end. Now we are off on a new adventure. The Stewart Seven starts now!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Newspaper needed!

One of our traditions is having a few major newspapers from the day our child was born. If any of you have the ability could you grab a newspaper from 6/20/2009 and let me know? I will work with you on sending it to us or picking it up from you.

We want to make sure to get a New York Times and it would be great to get some others too. Just reply to this email or send an email to craigthedad@gmail.com


Saturday, June 20, 2009

Janice and Joshua


A nice shot of Janice and Joshua!!!

We proudly introduce...


We proudly introduce

Joshua Douglas Stewart

He was born today, June 20th at 5:37pm. He weighed in at 9 pounds 2.8 ounces and about 20 inches long (no "official" length measurement yet). Janice and Joshua are doing well. Woooo-hoooooo!!!!

Thank you for all your prayers!!!! More pictures to come soon!

Brief breather... Still working on it!!!

We are at 7 cm now, 100 percent effaced. Baby is down and ready. The time is close now. So anyone have any guesses on what we are having? Boy or Girl? You make the call! Name suggestions are fun too!! Let us know!!!

It has begun!!

When the grandparents arrived I had a plan: date night. Baby misinterpreted the plan and heard: birth date.

Fortunately we were a step ahead of baby. We made it through a nice dinner and we saw Star Trek. WHOOO-HOOOOO! Okay enough of that. Well one more time. WHHOOOO-HOOOO!!! Yeah, date nights are rare now on to the really big news.

Right now I am writting from the hospital and we have begun!!! Irregular contractions started last night around 7:45 pm (20-30 mins apart) but really kicked in at 5am this morning. We arrived a Saint Pete's around 9 am and at 10 am were officially at 5 cm, 90 percent and bulging. We are excited. Our newest addition is arriving today for baby's very first birth date. Okay, one more time: WHOOO-HOOOOOO!

I will keep you posted.

Monday, June 08, 2009

celebrating an un-birthday...

Ready and waiting...(so were we!)

Janice, Nathaniel and Evelyn all have summer birthdays. Nathaniel has for the last 2 years celebrated an "un-birthday" at his school. As a matter of fact we all have at least 364 un-birthdays. Of course with the exception of a good friend's mom who was born on Feb 29th meaning that she has 1459 un-birthdays between each calendar birthday.

Un-birthdays are everyday, every minute and every second. We actually celebrated our first 2009 un-birthday this last weekend. It started when I was at work Friday morning about 9:30ish when I got a nervous phone call. It was the call that says "Honey, I think it's time". Janice called to tell me that at 5:30am some solid contractions had begun. They were erratic but very different from the Braxton Hicks she had been experiencing for the last several weeks. It is always interesting talking to Janice while she has contractions. There is a focused pause every few minutes. She has a rather high pain tolerance and you would never really know she is having a contraction other than the pause. When Joelle was on her way my parents were in town. They came to the house and were perplexed by my most beautiful and vivacious Janice. Sounding a lot like a commercial for phone service my mom would say "are you having one now?" We get the same response in the hospital. The monitor is ripping up the page and Janice is casually asking the nurse about the ages of her children all the while commenting on the joy of having kids. (and remember this is without pain medication)

Yeah, I know. It's no wonder why we have five kids. I married super mommy! :)

After I hung up the phone with Janice I checked the train schedule. Amtrak had a 12:20 and I was in SoHo and it takes about 20 minutes to get uptown to the office on 33rd and then a 5 minute walk to Penn Station. The 12:20 puts me in Hudson at 2:20 and home at 3. I packed up my stuff and caught the R train (Broadway local). I thought for a brief moment I would make it to Penn by 10:20 until the speakers squawked something indistinct about waiting. I think MTA purposely garbles their announcements to render the crowds complacent. We stood for a minute or two expressionless and without chagrin clanked forward. After a brief stop at the office on 33rd I caught the 12:20 and took a bobble-headed ride up the Hudson. I could hardly stay awake or asleep. Never had the gift of instant repose.

Once home I was attacked greeted by Batman, an elegant blue fairy and a just home from school Nathaniel. Evelyn was sleeping and Tanta Willow was there with Saba (Uncle Doug) dropping off Nathaniel. Hoping to speed things up Janice decided walking the half mile to the mail box would be helpful - it was (we always get to the hospital and everything stops). She was VERY ready to go to the hospital upon her return. She started packing. While she was stuffing things in a suitcase Nathaniel asked "How do you know you are going to have the baby?" Janice replied "Because of a pain in my belly. The pain tells me that the baby is ready to come out." Nathaniel quickly replied "How do you know that's not just because you are old?" Janice smiled. I will have to work with Nathaniel on "Words men do not use around women - EVER".

We continued and packed up our suitcases, paused, packed the car, paused, hugged and kissed good bye, paused and started to St Peter's in Albany.

My most beautiful Janice in a "pause pose".

I thought this was funny considering our family will soon total 7

Upon arrival everything went as expected: the contractions were good and about 2 minutes apart eventually getting down to 1 minute. As usual Janice confounded the nurses with her clear and calm demeanor between pauses. Then we got tired, very tired. It was that moment when the adrenaline dries up and your brain wonders how you ended up at the hospital in the first place. It was late. I tried to sleep toppled over on a table with my bum flatly against my wooden chair and my head buried in my duffel bag. Half my body immediately lost contact with it's allotment of blood and fell to numbness. Fortunately our nurse had pity on me and found a recline-able and slightly more comfortable vinyl chair. The Doctor checked Janice finding her at 2 cm, the baby was head down but had not dropped. We all decided to wait it out. So Janice worked her way through rapid contractions and drifted through off and on sleep until the next morning.

With daylight came the realization that contractions had nearly stopped. Not to be deterred we pulled on the sneakers and walked around the hospital to see if we could get things moving again. We, well Janice, even ran around the hospital at times (I have video). Even with all our efforts baby decided that it was finished celebrating its un-birthday. The midwife and nurse sent us home with a kindly lecture on how to avoid un-birthdays and the alarming advice that Janice should call 911 with detailed instructions of what to do should her water break at home. We left thinking about how we really should clean the bath tub again.

So in the truest sense of the word we celebrated our first REAL un-birthday last weekend. Next time I am bringing cake and a real recliner.