Archive for July, 2011

Made it to Baltimore

Holy Moly – its been a busy few weeks. ¬†But we’re here. ¬†And we finally have internet ūüôā ¬†We are still unpacking boxes and figuring out life here in Baltimore, but things are going well. ¬†Ill work on some monster posts on the move and Wil this weekend!



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As most of you know, we are getting ready to move from New Jersey to Baltimore. We are moving because the research lab I work in is relocating and Friday was my last day, ever. They are completely shutting down the base and¬†transferring¬†the land to the county. I have been so incredibly busy trying to wrap things ¬†up in NJ while keeping things running in Baltimore (plus the whole ‘baby’ incident) it didn’t really hit me that Friday was my last day at the Fort… ever.

This my sounds like hyperbole but it really is the end of an era. A whole lot of amazing science/technology was developed at Fort Monmouth and at my building (McAfee Center in the picture above) in particular. The McAfee Center’s namesake, Walter Samuel McAfee was an¬†African¬†American¬†mathematician¬†and scientist who first calculated the speed of the moon relative to earth. At the time, when the official¬†announcement¬†of this scientific breakthrough was made it only mentioned Dr. McAfee’s white colleges.¬†Dr. McAfee was an integral part of Project Diana¬†(intellectual¬†forerunner of NRL’s Moonbounce program) which proved it was possible for radio waves to exit the ionosphere, bounce off the moon, re-enter the ionosphere, and be received at a monitoring station. This project is considered the birth of the US space program and fields of study such as radio and radar astronomy. This was the first time the human race had¬†purposefully ‘touched’ another celestial body. I could bore you (even more) with the technical details but I won’t, just trust me, the project was amazing.

I consider Project Diana to be the most interesting and advanced thing to come out of Fort Monmouth. However, other scientific breakthroughs and projects developed at the Fort include:

  • Major Edwin H. Armstrong developed frequency modulated (FM) wireless communication here. This is the same theory the radio in your car operates on.
  • Developed the first radio equipped weather balloon which led to the first air to ground wireless communications
  • In 1949 Fort Monmouth housed the 1st Pigeon Breeding and Training Center.¬†Hundreds¬†of these pigeons went on to serve with distinction in WWII and Korea . I swear this is a real thing, I have been told this book does a good job of telling the story.
  • In the 1950’s and 1960’s various night vision technologies were developed here which enabled US forces to operate 24/7 in¬†Vietnam.
  • Counter IED and counter mortar technologies (This is what I currently work on).

Overall, Fort Monmouth was a great experience and the history of the place is amazing. I cannot believe our congressman let the base shut down, especially since he has an advanced degree in science. The only member of congress who is a rocket scientist. Anyway, the family is looking forward to starting a new chapter in Baltimore. Hopefully, HOPEFULLY, moving out of Jersey will stop people from asking us if we know Snookie.

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Happy Birthday Phil

Happy birthday to my baby’s daddy. ¬†Here are Phil and Wil on Sunday evening, the last day of Phil’s baby beard. ¬†It was a like a playoff beard, but for paternity leave.


Hope you’re having a great day.

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Our little yellow baby

We are still fighting newborn jaundice!  He was a bit yellow coming home from the hospital and it usually dissipates within a few days Рbut Wil just keeps hanging on to that bilirubin!  We have to get his levels tested every few days, which involves a trip to the hospital and a heel prick.  Hopefully it will be cleared up soon.  But until then Рenjoy some pictures of our yellow child:

First doctors appointment. ¬†He was in the 25th percentile for length, 50th percentile for weight, and 75th for head size. ¬†Sooooo he’s short, stocky, and has a big head?

We think Barney has finally made peace with the fact that Wilek is here to stay.

Pics Ive randomly snapped:

Its hard to get a picture with his eyes open, because as soon as the flash starts to go off, he closes them.

We have gone on a couple walks around the block, but on Sunday we took Wil out to lunch with us.  It was nice to be out of the house for a while.  Not the best picture Рbut I was pretty pumped to have my baby all bundled up with me AND enjoying a nice cold beer.  Life was good:

Phil went back to work yesterday and Wil and I fended for ourselves.  We had a doctors appointment and a bili test Рso I had my first out-of-the-house diaper changes and feedings.  Then Phil came home early to watch Wil so I could run into the doctors Рthat was my first 1-2 hours being away from the baby. So there have been lots of firsts! So far, so good!

Other things that are surprising me:

  • I know this seems like a no brainer – but babies are MESSY. ¬†Like really messy. ¬†I didnt think something so small could cause so much laundry! We are getting better about catching spit-up and other things – so hopefully this will taper off. ¬†But in the mean time – I will continue to do laundry every day for this kid – even though Phil and I only required it once a week.
  • Wil seems happiest when hes curled up sleeping on my chest, so thats exactly how we spend a good portion of the day. ¬†But then I cant stop staring at him – so its making me go cross-eyed. ¬†Seriously – try staring at your chest for 5-10 consecutive minutes. ¬†It starts to hurt. ¬†Then do that all day long….
  • I can, in fact, survive without 9 hours of sleep a night. ¬†Two 3 hour stretches is more than sufficient at the moment!

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Happy Due Date, Wil

Well Wilek was due today and its surreal to think that this little guy could still be inside of me. I am sooooo thankful he is not. ¬†Yes, it was much easier to care for him on the inside. ¬†But its very nice to be able to ‘share’¬†the¬†responsibility¬†with phil. ¬†We had both sets of parents visiting this past holiday weekend, but it has been just phil and I since Tuesday. ¬†We’ve been getting into a groove and figure out this whole parenting thing. ¬† Here are a few highlights from his first week of life – He knowes his poses!

Chilling in the bouncer>>

Coming home from the hospital Wil was a smidgen jaundice so the pediatrician recommended keeping him in the sun for a while everyday to help regulate bilirubin levels. However, following in his fathers footsteps, Wil is not a fan of sunlight during naptime.

Once home.  Barney is still figuring the baby out.  The first few days he had enough distractions with the parents here, but now that they are gone and the baby has stayed Р hes much more interested in all the noises.  Wilek gets the occasional lick and sniff but mostly head tilts from barney.

First bath at home.  As you can see, Wil has also discovered his hands. Obviously he cant actually control his hand movements yet, but when his fingers happen to fall near his mouth, he is quite content.

Forth of July parade.  Luckily, this was about 10 steps out our front door, so we bundled Wil up and took him outside for a short visit.  He slept through the whole thing.

One week old.  We took this picture this morning.  Wil does not like to be on his back or unswaddled.  But we hope to get weekly pictures with his stuffed lion so we can see his growth over time.

Other notable items:

  • His stump fell off already – ¬†this morning actually. ¬†I was kind of sad, as he transitions from’ little-teenie newborn’ to just ‘newborn’
  • He probably thinks Neil Everett is his father. ¬†We have sports center on for hours every morning as we get ready for the day and dont think to change it until we see the top ten for the 4th time.
  • I made dinner last night! ¬†Like I chopped up vegetables and used the stove and everything!! ¬†This was a big step for me in the ‘feeling normal’ category.
  • Phil’s KDR is up to 1.54
  • The first two nights home from the hospital Wil was sleeping all day and wanted to be awake all night . We are getting him much closer to a realistic day/night schedule. Will keep you posted.
  • We are tentatively scheduled to move to Baltimore July 19 as long as Wil says its OK.

PS – Suck it jimi. From phil.

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Fatherhood by Phil

I assume this is how the next 18 years will go. No problem.

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He’s Here

Wil made his arrival at 6:00pm Thursday evening, June 30th, at 7lbs 7 .4 oz.  He was 18.5 inches long.  Mom, dad and baby are doing great.  We will give more updates in the next few days!






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