Sunday, December 30, 2012


The downside, a small one I will grant you, of having a kid that is reasonably well behaved is that you (I) can get a little spoiled.

Robbie is normally a pleasure to be around but he has a pretty bad cold and has been a holy terror today.  Throwing his toys at us, throwing his food on the floor and going after the wine glasses that make a lovely sound when they are crashed against each other.  Nothing like being in a battle of wills with a 16 month old and barely holding your own. 

Hopefully the bath we gave him will help with a good nights sleep (please, please, please).

Happy New Year everyone!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Village

While this doesn't even come close to capturing the awesome people in our lives, we've been lucky to have so many great friends stop by to meet Anna Helen.

Anna Helen has many awesome women around her to teach her how to be strong, confident, and caring.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Anna Helen in Black and White

AH is definitely an expressive baby... when she's awake.

But that's a post for another day.

For now, enjoy the many looks of Anna Helen and the happiness of Mom that these photos were caught at 9pm and not at 3am.

I think we may get a real smile out of this gal in the next couple weeks.  The last photo sure does look like one to me!

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Over 30,000.  The number of blog hits on Palmetto Baby as of a few days ago.

Welcome to all of you.  Most of you are family and friends.

And the person who got here googling "drunk giraffe"?

Welcome to you too.

Here's our little drunk giraffe who gets steadier on his feet every day.  We're not far off from running. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

It's the Holiday Season...

We had a little different of a Christmas this year, just feeling like it was a little too early to travel with Anna Helen (and brave an 8+ hour road trip with a 16 month old).

I spent a good part of maternity leave feeling sad and worried about it, but Christmas?  It was more than ok.

We had the Edwards in for a few days before the holiday to meet AH and celebrate, and ended up inviting 4 other families in the neighborhood to join us for Christmas dinner.

Robbie favored the boxes and paper over the majority of the gifts, and despite our promise to not get Robbie anything (Scrooges we are!), he loved our last minute purchase of a toddler table and chairs from Ikea.

Bought out of function for dinner, it was the best $50 we've ever spent.

The village?  It's never what you expected it to be.

But I'm so glad for the village we have.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

First Haircut

Grandpa and Grandma Edwards (along with Uncle Joey and Aunt Paula) were in town for a n earlyChristmas and to meet Anna Helen this weekend and a wonderful time was had by all.

One of the highlights of the weekend was "Man" morning on Saturday.  Grandpa Edwards, Uncle Joe, Robbie and myself made the journey over to Virginia to the fabled Bradlee Barbershop for Robbie's first haircut. 

We ate breakfast together and then headed to the Barber shop.  Robbie was a trooper for most of the time but he lost it right at the end.  It was a great moment for all the Edwards men and a good way to carry on a family tradition.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

What Comes Next?

What comes next when your infertility journey is over?

Is it ever really over?

Shawn and I would love to have more kids.  I know we're saying that only a couple of weeks into the second, but we would. 

The reality of DC, however, is that it probably just isn't feasible.  With all of our fertility treatments being out of pocket, in addition to child care, space in our house, hopes for a Virginia move on the horizon, college savings, weddings some day, etc., our reality is that our family building journey is probably over.

So where does that leave us? 

Our infertility, our loss... is it "cured"?  Is that part of your life ever really cured?  If you are successful, what do you owe back? 

I feel like we owe something back.

We were lucky.  We are lucky.

Jules and I were joking the other day that I seem to have a spidey sense of those struggling with infertility or loss.  Maybe it is my version of gaydar, but I pick up on those who aren't having as easy of a time as others. 

I want to be a safe place for people to talk.  I want friends, acquaintances, total strangers to ask question.  I want to be open with our journey. 

I AM open with our journey.  It doesn't scare me.

I've met several strangers-to-me through being open. Friends have referred other friends to me as somewhere to get honest advice and an open heart to infertility struggles. I thrive on that. 

But is it time to turn from being a passive recipient to be active?  And what does that mean?  Do I owe more than I talked about in this post?

Should I try to start a RESOLVE group?  Do I have time and the capacity for that commitment? 

Does my serving on the public policy board at RESOLVE resolve my hope to give back?  What else is out there?  What else do people need?

Everyone's journey is different.  The endings aren't always as happy as ours.  Most families have to spend a lot more money.  A lot more time.  Endure more loss and more heartache than I probably have the capacity for.

The other side? It is totally worth it. But not everyone gets there.

I don't need anything else for Christmas.  We have it all.

I'm glad we're there. 

Now I want to start repaying for the joy we have.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


The Duckling class meets Santa...

I have no idea where to even begin to take Robbie (and maybe AH) for a Santa photo.  I can't stomach the mall during the holidays, and there's no company holiday party this year to get a photo like last year.  So I guess last year's (awesome) photo will have to suffice.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Friends In High Places, v. 2

Mama got out of the house tonight to attend a party celebrating our favorite Senator's victory in this year's election.  Robbie met Senator Gillibrand when he was 3 weeks old... AH has him beat with meeting her at 15 days!

She's a working mom with two little ones of her own...

She's smart as hell and verbal on so every issue that I've spoken with her on...

... and for our family's sake, she's the Senate originator of legislation to promote a tax credit for infertility treatments.

This is the legislation the RESOLVE organization was pushing back on their Hill day in the spring, and I was able to thank her for her leadership on the effort.

We need more Moms in Congress!


With Robbie, September 2011:

Monday, December 17, 2012

Thank you Lord

Thank you Lord for giving Susuann and I two amazing children to care for and love.  When I think of the events of last Friday I can not help but to shed a tear for the blessings we have recieved and in sorrow and empathy for those who have lost so much.  I will do my best to welcome each new day with a smile and with joy in my heart knowing so well how much you have given our family.   When I leave this world, many days in the future, may my children be there to see me from this world into the next.  I pray that you grant Susann and I all the wisdom. patience and love that we will need to prepare Robbie and Anna Helen for the lives you have granted them.

Thy will be done.  Amen.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

In the pack

The one person who hasn't had a tough time adjusting around here is Daisy.

She and Robbie have started to "play" together (ie, chase each others/play catch), and she was always curious and gentle when he was a baby.

Fast forward to AH, and she's just as happy to be a "big sister" again.

We have a great dog.

Friday, December 14, 2012

FBC CDC Christmas Show

After the four year old class each did solos, the Ducklings and Koalas (one year old classes) came out for their performance debut. Robbie wasn't too interested, but did do some seat dancing.  We did our best to get it on video!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Rolling Prodigy

AH (no lie) rolled over tonight.  Three times.

She either hates tummy time (likely), or is the smartest baby in the history of time (unlikely).

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Did You Know?

Did you know that you don't really have to go to the pediatrician eight times in the baby's first 6 weeks of life? 

I knew our weight checks last time were somewhat of an anomaly, but today, at her appointment, AH made it back to her birth weight, something Robster struggled to do for his first month of life.  We don't have to go back to the doctor for four weeks!

Oh the things that second time parenthood teaches you.

That it's totally ok if your baby is losing more than 10% of her weight in the hospital and is starting to get jaundice to pull out the formula to supplement.  That it's totally ok to make your best effort at breastfeeding, and to do everything you can, but if the milk isn't there, it isn't there.  That a starving baby isn't the way to go?

That having written a blog back in September 2011 called "baborexic" is just sad.  And to have felt the guilt associated with it?  Also sad. 

That you are totally on TOP of it this time.  On top of avoiding PPD.  On top of speaking up against the evil pump because you know what it does to your psyche.  On top of taking the naps when the baby naps, and on top of even COOKING DINNER tonight.

I'm impressed with me.

We can do this.  Together, Shawn and I can do this.

AH, 5 days:

Robster, 3 weeks:

Sunday, December 9, 2012

She (they) stuck the landing

Done done and done.

Anna Helen Edwards was born at 10:09 on Monday, December 3rd.

I know full well people grow weary of of the "all I want is a healthy baby"routine, particularly those who don't have kids but there is no more dramatic moment than being in the OR for a c-section and seeing the amazing doctors (we heart you Dr. Mungman!) pull a child out of the person who you love more than life itself and being told that that "she looks great."

Like most people I love to complain but the reality is that I have so much to be thankful for.  I come from a loving family, I am married to an amazing lady and the Almighty has seen fit to bless us with two amazing children.  I can literally hear the words from on high - "Don't screw this up!" 

I just want to finish by saying how much I love and admire Susann.  She came through every trial of pregnancy with a smile on her face and I could not imagine raising Robbie and Anna Helen with anyone else.  I love you sweetheart!     

Thursday, December 6, 2012

GTL, v. 2.0

Robbie and Anna Helen?

Must be siblings.

Robbie, circa August 2011:

Anna Helen, circa an hour or so ago...