They call him Mellow Yellow

50% of all babies are born with jaundice, 80% of all preterm babies have it. The ailment is not uncommon. Jaundice, from the French jaune, or yellow, is when a neonatal system produces too many red blood cells, then "trashes" them or breaks them down into bilirubin (pronounced Billy Rueben) but the liver isn't capable of processing these garbage blood cells so the skin turns yellow. Traditional treatment includes exposure to sunlight and the use of a Biliblanket.

So the new one, who still doesn't have a good web name, has the jaundice. LMA had it but it was never an issue and had passed before we left the hospital. This new one (let's call him Giblets) has progressively gone from a pinkish baby with a face slightly tinged to a Turner Classic version of a baby during the colorization fad. White fuzz and yellow skin do not a neat looking baby make.

So we spent most of today at the hospital. We called the doctor's office, on a Sunday, and gave them the down low and they instructed us to hit the ER up in Round Rock. So we head up around noon. Now, I understand what triage means, but for the love of God, could we, a family of four that includes a 4 day old and an antsy 3 year old get some attention sooner then The Moaner or Broad With "Mental Illness?" We were there long enough for LMA and I to walk complete around the hospital building, come back, go do some grocery shopping, stop at Jack in the Box, come back, then go back outside to hunt for acorns. It was about 5 o'clock when we were released and what we got was a blanket delivered to us.

Really? You ask. Delivered? Yeah. Get out, eh? No way, Wet Head, they brought it to us. So let me get this straight. They knew the baby had The Jaunt before you left the original hospital, but then you had to go to another one and wait 5 hours so they could send you home and deliver a blanket? Yeah that's about it. So what was this 5 hours spent doing? Um, telling LMA to shut her noise hole.

Plus the blanket is all teched out like a James Bond diamond security trap with blue lasers. It's just begging us to steal this baby.

Lest we forget that this is the 2nd child. I'm doing my best to keep LMA occupied and played with and doted upon. I tell you what, she cries more than Giblets.

So yesterday I thought it'd be a good idea to take her out to the park and fly a kite. We had a dolphin kite that we bought at the kite fair but hadn't taken out yet. I packed it and a juice box and water and headed down to the school. It was a nice breezy day and we got the kite up no problem. After 10 feet of string, LMA lost all interest and decided she'd rather go play with rocks. So I was left in a peaceful state of watching a blue dolphin flying around with the grackles and doves.

It also gave me an opportunity to offer myself as an afternoon snack for what I think was a chigger. Now I've never had ticks or chiggers to my knowledge as a kid, my parents will probably laugh at that, so I don't know what the deal is. I know that mosquitoes make you itch and leave a welt, fire ants itch and hurt and leave a pimple looking thing. Chiggers apparently lay eggs? Someone correct me on this, please, because the hypochondriac in me is freaking out and I can't talk about it anymore with Mrs. Austin because she thinks I think the bug has laid a cancerous tumor in my finger and I'll be dead by the morn. At this point I have a pretty big white head on my finger and it burns. Don't know what else to do but keep it clean and take Benedryl.

But that's not why you're here. Goodness knows it's Giblets that people want, so Giblets people will get, even you 5th level vegans.

So take...take me home. Cuz I don't remember, take take me home...

Oh the wonderful thing about Tiggers is he doesn't charge $10 an hour to babysit.

Finally, a REAL passenger so I can take the HOV lane.


Welcome Gregory!

Gregory Powell Rollman was born at 1:07pm on Wednesday May 26th, 2004. He was 19 1/2 inches long and weighed 7lbs 4oz. There were no complications and both mom and baby are recovering wonderfully.

Rowan (LMA) and I are at home right now recovering ourselves. LMA misses her mom and new brother a lot and has to be constantly distracted from the fact that they aren't home yet. But, our vote was to try to keep her on her schedule of going to school and sleeping in her own room. I'm sure, like today, we'll go in a little later and I'll pick her up a little sooner, but she still needs to see her friends and interact. We'll have the weekend to bond.

So without further ado, some pictures. We took an assload of pictures, mostly the Conroe family took the pictures, but I did manage to get a few. In one of them the baby is just minutes old and still has some "stuff" so be warned.

Mrs. Austin doing much better after the epideral.

Here the little man is just minutes old. Since there were no problems, Mrs. Austin got to hold him right away.

Here's Gregory giving Grandpa Conroe his best Baby Crane Kung Fu style.

Close up, gotta cut them fingernails.

Welcome to the world dude.

I'm sure we'll have more pictures up soon. Mrs. Austin's recovery is 10x what it was with LMA, so we may come home sooner and we'll have pictures gallor then.

Anyway, that's it. Very exciting!


Last day of the single child parents.

This will be the last entry until, well, probably tomorrow. In slightly more than 24 hours, there will be a new little person in our family. Little Miss Austin will be a big sister. Grandparents will have another child to spoil. The parents will now officially not sleep for another 3 years.

It's a good day to be a daddy.

It is, really. Mrs. Austin has just about had it with this pregnancy. Above it all she just wants to see her new baby and start loving on it. That, and I'm sure she wants to sleep, so guess what I get to do for a few weeks.

That's right, play lots of video games.

No, in all seriousness, I'll be the care giver for a while as Mrs. A recovers and reverts to normal shape and size and sanity. Yet again, I'll be able to exert my influence over a young impressionable mind like a waffle iron on silly puddy. I will mold and shape and train this little one to be probably exactly the same as its older sister; a crazed, hyper, smiling, too smart for her own good, no sleep needing, spazoid. (Or as she says, spazowad.)

It also represents the end of the Tag Era. Before, if one of us was tired or busy or, let's face it, just not in the mood to scoop poop or wipe noses or feed mouths and tummies, we'd just shout TAG and the other, for some strange reason, would be obligated to complete the task at hand. Well what happens now? There will be no tag, and if there is it will be a lesser degree. "Tag! You change this diaper, I'll go pull the other one out of the dryer." Hopefully LMA will start to pull some weight. She's pretty self contained at this point and doesn't require a lot of hands on supervision. A few words and she's done. She's still needy and prone to tantrums, but such is a three year old's existence. We've started cracking down on the giving in all the time because she's cute, in essence creating more instability and cause for breakdowns. At just the right time I might add. Because what you need to do on the eve of a new birth is to start being more stearn with your toddler. Makes for a peaceful and sane household.

I'll wait for the laughter to subside.

So by tomorrow night, there will probably at least be an update. Maybe even pictures. Before you ask, nothing overtly "natural" or "revealing" or "squishy," just some shots of the new kid wearing stock hospital blanket, diaper and hat.

In the mean time, if you want, use the comment section to guess the time of the birth. I'm guessing 2:30pm. Mrs. Austin is guessing 12:00.

We'll also need ideas on what to call this one. If it's a girl, Little Miss Austin 2 will probably be a cop out. Maybe Big Sister and Little Sister. If it's a boy, Little Mr. Austin? That's still LMA. (The things I worry about, I mean really. What a goofy m*th*f*ck*r I've turned into.)

I think maybe Spazoid and Chuckles will work for now.

See you later.


Hip with Tech, Yo.

Just adding some bells and/or whistles to the site. You should see a place to add comments to if you'd like. If you like what you read, or you want to make fun of some photos.


Teetering. Frail, latent teetering.

I was going to use this entry to talk about another distinct separation between females and males; namely that chicks can't or won't or don't see an improvement in High Definition picture. However, I was shot down by my better half saying that was an unfair judgment. She does see an improved picture, but right now it's only on 3 of 1000 channels. Was that what we spent all that money on? Three channels? I tried to remind her that cable was expensive at the start and offered, maybe, 15 channels, but the attempt sounded hollow. Any time I try to justify technology it sounds hollow. It's probably because it's a luxury and not needed, so defending your property becomes an exercise in frivolity.

So, I can't write about that.

What I probably can write about is that we've one week, one week, until Austin #2 arrives. I stress the one week part because Mrs. Austin did her damnedest to convince her doctor that tomorrow was a better option then next week. It was pretty sad because she's in a lot of pain and discomfort, and having to stoop to the level of bribing a doctor just makes my heart pump blood to my lungs so I can giggle a little bit. She offered the man a new Harley, I mean, that's saying something about the level of wear her body has endured.

I got a fire ant bite, don't think I didn't bitch about it for a few days.

Some other good news, Mrs. Austin has a 4.00 so far at Austin Community College. That's right, another semester in the bag. I won't say this semester was harder than the last one, but I will say this time she got a little help. However, going to school and working while pregnant should be outlined in the Geneva Convention.

So imagine you've been flying a transatlantic route and as the flight goes along your chair gets smaller and smaller and the cloth cover starts turning to wood. Now imagine that the last hour of your flight is spent with someone sitting on your chest while someone else punches you in the kidneys. Now imagine that all this will stop once you land, and you now it, and you keep praying for the pilot to come on and tell you something. Just when you think you can't take anymore, the stewardess comes on the PA and says that she's sorry, but traffic is heavy and we'll have to circle for a while. We should be on the ground after another 20 mins of kidney punches.

We just heard the stewardess.

Yay for our side.

Oh, and I was going to post some pictures, but that will have to wait because we've got a few from Mr. and Mrs. Brighton I have to put. Plus I screwed up a picture of LMA's wicked cool castle cake, so I'll have to fix that. In the mean time, enjoy a day at the ball park.

Additional Thoughts

I wanted to update this in case anyone of a political mind is reading (I think maybe there are two.) I would watch for John Kerry to ask Ralph Nader to be his VP. Call me crazy. The conspiracy theorists among us still think Bush will ditch Cheney as his VP and pick up Guliani. What an unstoppable ticket there; a war time president and the hero of 9/11. But I still think Nader would be a good pick up for Kerry. Get the labor endorsements, all the working stiffs, and you're not losing any democratic votes.

Bruno Gianelli eat your heart out.

Nov. 2004

It's hard to find an image of Bush when he's not making a funny face or having his head put on a drag queen's body. Try it.


Good Things Come In Threes

Little Miss Austin is officially 3 years old as of Sunday. I'm writing this at work (actually, I write most of these at work) and I'm having to cram two days of work into a couple hours so I can take some time off to be with The Brighton Duo. Notice how I am taking the time to write even though I should be working. It's a theme that has saturated my work days. I like to work really hard for 15 minutes, then mess around for 10. In the course of the day I work probably about 3-4 hours out of the 8-9 I'm here. I'm wandering now, I meant to just put up some birthday pics, but instead I'm rambling on about me.

I'm sure I'll have more about "me" later. For those who are just here for the pictures, you can tune out after these.

On the pregnancy front, the kid has flopped over AGAIN into the breech position. With less than two weeks until arrival, it's looking like this may be a c-section. This is hurting Mrs. Austin for two main reasons. First of all, it physically hurts. This much movement is killing her, for real. Guys, if you plan on having kids, just grasp the fact that there is no pain or level of discomfort you can imagine in the course of your average male life that will compare to what your lady will or has gone through during pregnancy. Yeah, passing a stone I hear is pretty bad. Yeah getting nutmegged with a hockey puck is a little painful. But keep in mind, this is a 9 month endeavor. Could you imagine being wracked every 15 minutes for 3 months? I didn't think so. So just shut up and sit in the corner waiting for your summons to fetch food and administer foot rubs.

At any rate, LMA's 3rd birthday came and went. With some family coming in the next weekend we held off on the big to-do in favor of an inflatable pool-scape in the backyard on an overcast day. LMA doesn't really care one way or the other if her friends are over or not or if mommy and daddy are trying to ruin another grill as long as she can through things in a shallow pool of water and run around screaming at the dog.

Oh cabana boy? Bring me a koolaid.

Arrr! I'm the Littlest Pirate. Avast ye adultlike scallywags!

More toys should come with a water canon.

I cast you into the air. Fly! Be free!

I've nothing further to add. There's apparently something going in the Middle East, but I'm not qualified to even complain about. I'll vote my conscience in November, but until then I'll just listen to NPR and Air America Radio and be quiet.


Nothing new to report.

Seriously. Status Quo. You'll know when we do. Not that I'm tired of getting phone calls asking about Mrs. Austin's health, I'm just finding it hard to write about anything else. Frankly, there's nothing else going on.

To give you and indication of how little is going on, we have 1 new photo in the past 2 weeks.

I'll let you soak that up a bit. It's been a slow few weeks at work and Mrs. A's been going cuckoo at home by herself. The term "mow the roof" has come up a couple times, in jest, commenting on how she is looking for anything to do. The house has never been cleaner, Lil Miss Austin's lunches are all made the night before. Errands that have been put off for months have been done. It's like having a personal assistant. Well, it's like having a personal assistant that requires random naps and chocolate and might occasionally fall over.

Seriously. Those visiting will notice the front bathroom has some new tile and the hedges have been expertly trimmed.

Nesting my ass, this is Bob Villa shit. A blitzkrieg of home improvement on the eve of the New One's arrival.

Which leaves me to do little at all aside from trudging through the day to day and coming home to be a walking brace and answering service.

So now I have this place to update, so I will.

The Avs are out of the playoffs. They were stopped 2 games short of being only the 3rd team in NHL history to come back from a 3-0 game deficit is the playoffs. I have to tell you, unlike most years, I'm not terribly saddened or shocked that this happened. Most times I'd be grumpy for days, eschewing all hockey related news and events the moment the Avs were ousted. Not this time. I'm still visiting NHL.com to get the latest news on the CBA and to see if any other deals are being made. I'm actually quite hopeful the Flames will do well this time and bring the Cup back to Canada. I figure we killed a couple Canadians in the war, they can have the prize back.

But let's face it, the Avs were anything but a powerhouse this year. And it's the end of an era I believe. Detroit, Dallas and Colorado, perennial favorites each year, looked pretty sick this time around. The aging Red Wings barely able to keep up with the younger teams, the battered Stars not being able to generate offense and the scattered Avs having their team daily reconfigured so as to lose all cohesiveness. When I look at the teams that are left, I'm quite surprised, namely at the Southern California and Floridian teams. There's not even any ice for your drinks in these places much less to skate on. It's just not natural.

Forsberg is gone. Let him go. Stop being so clingy. The Kariya/Selanne deal was a bust. Cash them out and send them back to the Ducks. Abby is still a good prospect, Svatos looks promising. But dammit Lacroix, stop wheeling and dealing for a while. Let these guys get some chemistry. The CBA will expire, there will be no agreement and there will be no hockey so let it rest for a year, play with what's left when the dust settles. I'm ok with it. Denver'd be ok with it. We've already got two more championships than the Nuggets and the Rockies.

Moving on, what's left. Oh yeah. We tortured some foreigners. Heck yeah! Go America! Nothing like bombing the shit out of a country to free them from oppressive rule, then take the survivors to the same prisons and do worse things then the original dictator ever conceived. Saddam is in some Cuban safe house thinking, "Naked? A human pyramid? Sweet Fancy Allah that's creative!" But I won't comment on it any further. Others have, I'll leave it to them.

Hey, Friends is over. Lattes for everyone. I don't know. I can't get worked up over this. When you cancel Farscape because it's too expensive, but this show and its billionaire cast lives on for 10 years, I shed no HDTears for you. It's not good riddance, it's just riddance.

I have a beef about people not answering emails. Not people so much, like my friends or family, but people as in giant conglomerates. Embrace the technology you fools!! My whole point is if you put a Contact Us page up, and it has a phone number AND an email, well then answer the god damn emails! What does that say to you as a consumer? That you're voice should only be heard if it's just your voice being heard? Emailing a company larger than, say, a local florist, is like placing a phone call to the Byzantine Era. It's a slap in the face. We're supposed to swallow that bullshit form letter down and pretend we didn't send anything. If companies answered phones like they do email, there would be no companies. I'm going to start picking Fortune 500 companies at random and sending them emails from their web sites with questions like, "Greetings. I am quite interested in dropping inconceivable amounts of cash into advertising with or for your company. I am not the Prince of Syria, I'm an American citizen. Please email me back at your earliest convenience." Then sit back and wait for the Nothing to rear its vacant head.

Man. Need to get off that subject.

I'm still kickin' with the art. The funkiness attributed to not having the time needed to make a solid push into the industry comes and goes with each new issue Jeremy Dale puts out, but I did get my first commission. Someone saw my art and said, "I gots ta have me some of that." I'm a little worried that it's taking me so long to do it, but that's what happens when you've got 30 mins a day to draw. Half that time is getting set up. I know, bitch bitch bitch.

Well, that's about all I've got this time around. Sorry it was mostly blithe filler, but I'm sure soon enough you'll be getting tired of all the baby pictures and the longing for pithy commentary will consume you.

Until then...